Microsoft Secures Exclusive Worldwide Rights To Publish “Oddworld” Games for Xbox

Microsoft Secures Exclusive Worldwide Rights To Publish
Games for Xbox

Four Titles in Globally Lauded Action/Adventure Game Series to be Developed Exclusively For Xbox Video Game Console

REDMOND, Wash., Oct. 23, 2000 — Microsoft Corp. today announced that it has signed a deal with leading interactive entertainment publisher Infogrames Inc. to obtain the exclusive worldwide publishing and distribution rights to the best-selling
game series, created by Oddworld Inhabitants. Beginning with the much-anticipated game
“Munch’s Oddysee,”
Microsoft will exclusively publish the next four installments in the
“Oddworld Quintology”
for its Xbox video game console. Scheduled to launch in fall 2001,
“Munch’s Oddysee”
will be available only on Xbox.

“The opportunity to bring the full force of our publishing and marketing resources to bear on such a popular game series as ‘Oddworld’ is a major coup,”
said Ed Fries, vice president of games publishing at Microsoft.
“This maps perfectly to our longstanding strategy of working with the world’s best game designers to create experiences that will excite the imaginations of gamers everywhere.”

Since its debut, the
game series has become one of the most globally popular game franchises of all time, with more than 4 million copies worldwide, garnering more than 100 industry awards and gracing the cover of more than 35 magazines. The two previously released chapters,
“Abe’s Oddysee”
“Abe’s Exoddus,”
have been heralded as revolutionary for their mix of brilliant graphical artistry, unique personality and compelling gameplay. The upcoming
“Munch’s Oddysee”
continues the inventive spirit.

According to Lorne Lanning, president and co-founder of Oddworld Inhabitants, the choice of the Xbox platform was an easy one.
“Our goal with ‘Munch’s Oddysee’ and future installments in the ‘Quintology’ has always been to create an immersive experience that pushes the boundaries of reality. Only Xbox gives us the graphical muscle and intense digital sound to unleash our creative juices and allow us to bring the imaginary world and rich characters of Oddworld to life.”

The popular
series was originally published by Infogrames. According to Yves Blehaut, senior vice president of Infogrames Inc., allowing Microsoft to exclusively publish the next titles in the
series will further strengthen its worldwide popularity.
“The ‘Oddworld’ franchise lends itself to cutting-edge technology such as that provided by the Xbox system. We feel Microsoft’s marketing plans for the Xbox launch coupled with its first-party publishing support will provide tremendous value for ‘Munch’s Oddysee’,”
Blehaut said.

Oddworld Inhabitants joins an impressive list of development studios — including Lionhead Satellites and Stormfront Studios — that will create exclusive Xbox content under the Microsoft label.
“Teaming up with Microsoft also gives the opportunity to combine the talents of two great companies,”
Lanning said.
“We were impressed with Microsoft’s marketing and distribution muscle, but what really won us over was its commitment to and vision for producing the best games.”

Today’s announcement is the latest in a series of momentum-building events solidifying industry support for Xbox. More than 150 of the world’s best game companies recently pledged their support for the platform because its future-generation technology will allow them to realize their creative visions for games.

About Oddworld Inhabitants

Formed in 1994 by special effects and computer animation veterans Sherry McKenna and Lorne Lanning, Oddworld Inhabitants ( ) is dedicated to creating the next generation of interactive entertainment. Its unique facility in San Luis Obispo, Calif., has attracted top video game and animation talent from all over the world.

About Infogrames

Based in New York, N.Y., Infogrames Inc. (Nasdaq
) is a majority-owned subsidiary of Infogrames Entertainment SA (Paris Bourse
“SICOVAM 5257”
), a worldwide leader in interactive entertainment software. The company is known for its best-selling franchises, such as the popular
“Unreal Tournament,”
available on leading video game platforms. For more information, visit Infogrames’ U.S. Web site at .

About Xbox

Scheduled for release in fall 2001, Xbox ( ) is Microsoft’s future-generation video game console that delivers superior graphics, better audio and the most intense, action-packed gaming experiences available. All this is possible because Xbox has at least three times the graphics performance of the newest generation of game consoles. Features will include a 733MHz CPU, a custom-designed graphics chip capable of processing more than 1 trillion operations per second, an 8GB hard drive, 64 MB of total memory, an audio processor with 256 audio channels, and broadband connectivity for online game play. Xbox uses familiar architecture and DirectX® development tools so game developers will be able to create better games faster.

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq
) is the worldwide leader in software, services and Internet technologies for personal and business computing. The company offers a wide range of products and services designed to empower people through great software — any time, any place and on any device.

The information contained in this document relates to a prerelease product that may be substantially modified before its first commercial release. Accordingly, the information may not accurately describe or reflect the product when first commercially released. This document is provided for informational purposes only, and Microsoft makes no warranties, express or implied, with respect to this document or the information contained in it.

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