Xbox Erupts on the Scene

John Winkle and hundreds of others waited for hours to be among the first in their town to buy the new video game system, which went on sale at midnight Wednesday. Photo by Andy RogersClick the photo for a larger image. (200dpi)

REDMOND, Wash., Nov. 15, 2001 — Today the Microsoft® Xbox™
video game system rocks the continent with its arrival on store shelves at thousands of retailers across North America.

With the best graphics and audio power of any gaming system, and a launch portfolio of games that has been heralded as more impressive than any in the history of the industry, Xbox kicks open the door to the most explosive, engrossing and intense games experiences on the planet.

“The future of gaming starts today, and it starts with Xbox,”
said Bill Gates, chairman and chief software architect of Microsoft Corp.
“Xbox is a key part of our strategy to drive the digital entertainment revolution and deliver the future of interactive entertainment to the home. It’s a great example of how Microsoft is innovating. But most important, it’s incredibly cool.”

“Together with our partners, we created Xbox to change the way people think about video games,”
said Robbie Bach, chief Xbox officer at Microsoft.
“Today’s launch of Xbox is a giant step toward achieving that goal. Over the next few weeks and months, you can expect new Xbox games that further demonstrate the power of Xbox through unprecedented levels of realism, gameplay and entertainment.”

The Best Launch Lineup Ever

Graphics matter, but it’s great gameplay that excites gamers, and Xbox has the strongest lineup ever to debut in a new video game system. Today’s generation of gamers sees video games as a form of entertainment in the same league as music, movies and television.

“Xbox allows the game artists at Tecmo to create stunning, movie-like experiences in games like they’ve never been seen before,”
said Tomonobu Itagaki, creator of
“Dead or Alive 3”
at Tecmo Inc.
“‘Dead or Alive 3’ has been called the best-looking video game ever, and it’s all thanks to the tremendous power and flexibility of Xbox.”

The powerful Xbox launch lineup includes these five video games:

  • Halo

    an epic action game that takes place in a science-fiction universe fresh out of a Hollywood movie

  • NFL
    Fever 2002, an officially licensed football game that combines fast and hard-hitting action with stunning TV-quality graphics

  • Oddworld: Munch’s Oddysee
    ™ , the game its creators said they couldn’t make on any other system

  • Project Gotham Racing

    which lets gamers jump into Ferraris, Porsches and BMWs and race with blazing speed through the streets of New York City, London, San Francisco and Tokyo

  • Dead or Alive 3

    said to be the best fighting game ever, which showcases the full potential of 3-D combat with the largest, most interactive environment ever

These must-have games are just part of the Xbox launch lineup. Nineteen games are available for Xbox during launch week, and another 10 to 15 games will hit store shelves before the end of the holiday season. Many more are in development from some of the best game developers, including Electronic Arts, Sega of America, Konami of America Inc., Activision Inc. and Namco Ltd.

Xbox Online: The Future of Gaming

In the coming months, Xbox gamers will enter an online theme park full of thrilling rides beyond their imaginations. The built-in hard drive coupled with the built-in Ethernet port for broadband connectivity will connect living rooms to create global playgrounds. The online capability of Xbox will allow players to access new levels, new characters and new games, all from the comforts of their couch. No other system has this built-in capability. (Broadband is scheduled to go live in summer 2002.)

“With a built-in hard drive and Ethernet port, Xbox is the only system designed from the ground up to deliver a complete online gaming experience. Online is our secret weapon,”
Bach said.

Excitement Heating Up at Retail

Retailers feel the rumblings of an imminent Xbox arrival, and they are excited too.
“As the first Xbox units arrive from the factory, our biggest challenge is making sure that gamers don’t buy them faster than we can stock the shelves. This is a hot one,”
said Dan DeMatteo, chief executive officer at GameStop Inc.

Xbox, with an estimated retail price of $299,* can be found at more than 15,000 retail locations across North America. A list of retailers can be found at .

About Xbox

Xbox is Microsoft’s future-generation video game system that delivers the most powerful games experiences ever. Xbox empowers game artists by giving them the technology to fulfill their creative visions as never before, creating games that blur the lines between fantasy and reality. More information on the technical specifications for Xbox is available at .

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.

* Retail prices may vary.

Microsoft, Xbox, Halo and Project Gotham Racing are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

Note to editors: If you are interested in viewing additional information on Microsoft, please visit the Microsoft Web page at on Microsoft’s corporate information pages.

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