Voyage Into Microsoft PC Games’ Imaginative World This Holiday Season

REDMOND, Wash., Nov. 6, 2002 — Microsoft Game Studios heats up the holidays with a season full of highly anticipated PC games, making the world of fantasy a reality for anyone who’s ever wanted to pilot a war plane, create a zoo or save an ancient civilization. The expansive collection of games appeals to audiences of all interests and skill levels and offers some of the most creative and entertaining experiences available this holiday season.

Age of Mythology

Poised to be one of the most exciting PC game titles released this year,
“Age of Mythology(TM)”
envelops players in a world where heroes battle mythological creatures and gods meddle in the lives of mortal men. Survival is ensured by harnessing the powers of Greek, Norse and Egyptian gods and more than 40 mythological creatures, including Cyclopes and the Minotaur.

Lush cinematic scenes take
“Age of Mythology”
players on an epic journey of heroism, action and excitement as they delve into a vast 3-D world featuring beautiful waves and water, lifelike terrain, realistic sunlight and verdant forests. Varied game modes and settings suit fans of all ages and experience levels. (Genre: Real-Time Strategy; Rating: Teen; Estimated Retail Price: $54.95 U.S.)

Combat Flight Simulator 3: Battle for Europe

Aspiring aviators can climb into the cockpit and fly more than 34 World War II planes, including the first jet fighters and other leading-edge aircraft that pushed combat aviation technology to the limits.
“Combat Flight Simulator 3: Battle for Europe”
features an advanced graphics engine designed to showcase realistic low-level terrain, ground objects and superbly detailed aircraft during high-speed, down-and-dirty combat missions.
“Combat Flight Simulator 3: Battle for Europe”
also introduces cooperative multiplayer action, enabling friends and family to tackle missions together. (Genre: Simulation; Rating: Everyone; Estimated Retail Price: $49.95 U.S.)

Zoo Tycoon: Marine Mania

“Zoo Tycoon(TM): Marine Mania(TM)”
is the newest addition to the top-selling1
“Zoo Tycoon”
franchise. The
“Marine Mania”
expansion pack works with the existing
“Zoo Tycoon”
game, enabling players to add more than 20 aquatic creatures, ranging from sea lions to giant squid, to their zoos. The family-friendly PC game challenges players to use their imagination and create the ultimate aquatic adventure, including customizable aquatic shows such as a killer whale performance and attractions such as a dolphin ride, where guests can swim with dolphins.
“Zoo Tycoon: Marine Mania”
also includes all the prehistoric content available in
“Zoo Tycoon: Dinosaur Digs.”
Players now can combine land, marine and prehistoric animals in a quest to build and manage the ultimate zoo . (Genre: Family Entertainment; Rating: Everyone; Estimated Retail Price: $29.95 U.S.)

Dungeon Siege

“Dungeon Siege,”
developed by Gas Powered Games Corp. and Chris Taylor, who created the award-winning
“Total Annihilation,”
combines the strongest elements of fantasy role-playing with over-the-top intensity and nonstop action.
“Dungeon Siege”
features advanced graphics technology that showcases a lush 3-D world with unprecedented realism and handcrafted detail. From a flourishing, vibrant forest to a deep, subterranean cavern,
“Dungeon Siege”
allows players to journey through breathtaking landscapes in a completely seamless world. Players are never removed from their immersion in the game to stop and watch a loading screen.

“Dungeon Siege”
is a great holiday gift for spouses or college students — it’s easy to understand, simple to control and quick to learn, letting players concentrate on the fun stuff such as battling monsters, exploring dungeons and developing characters. (Genre: Role-Playing; Rating: Mature; Estimated Retail Price: $49.95 U.S.)

Links 2003

Expanding on the best-selling2 golf simulator franchise ever,
“Links® 2003”
continues the tradition of creating the most realistic golf experience on the PC. Virtual golfers will feel as if they truly are on the course surrounded by lush trees and vegetation. Fairways and greens are so detailed that even the blades of grass and grains of sand look like the real thing. Additional features include the new Real-Time Swing;
Match Maker, an online service that enables players to join friends for a round of golf inside
“Links 2003”
; E-mail Tourney, which lets players set up tournaments via e-mail; a new single-player career mode; and an updated 3-D course designer that gives golfers the freedom to create their dream golf course and share it online with friends. (Genre: Sports; Rating: Everyone; Estimated Retail Price: $49.95 U.S.)

RalliSport Challenge

The critically acclaimed off-road rally racing game for the Xbox(TM) system speeds onto the PC, offering gamers and racing fans a comprehensive, action-packed racing experience that is captured in unbelievably detailed, photo-realistic graphics. Pulse-pounding excitement envelops players as they experience four types of rally competition in one game: Hill Climb, Traditional Rallies, RallyCross and Ice Racing. The fast-paced game challenges players to race 29 fully licensed cars on 48 tracks and all types of terrain, putting driving expertise to the test. Players also can engage in wheel-to-wheel grudge matches against friends or foes in multiplayer mode. (Genre: Racing; Rating: Everyone; Estimated Retail Price: $39.95 U.S.)

Asheron’s Call 2: Fallen Kings

“Asheron’s Call® 2: Fallen Kings,”
the sequel to the popular multiplayer online role-playing game
“Asheron’s Call,”
features a new 3-D graphics engine that delivers some of the most sophisticated graphics available on a PC. The fantasy game features a dynamic, evolving world that plunges players deep into exciting quests and adventures. The title boasts a revamped combat system as well as in-depth crafting system that gives players a chance to pursue noncombative skills. (Genre: Role-Playing Game; Rating: Mature; Estimated Retail Price: $49.95 U.S.)

MechWarrior 4: Mercenaries

Gamers can travel into the 31st century and pilot a 100-ton robot in
“MechWarrior® 4: Mercenaries.”
Players lead a band of money-hungry guns-for-hire through a distant land on an unscrupulous quest for riches and acclaim, choosing from more than 30 menacing walking tanks for more than 40 new missions in a distant universe.
“MechWarrior 4: Mercenaries”
adds an edgy stand-alone game to the highly popular
action-simulator franchise, allowing players to explore new worlds to satisfy an insatiable appetite for money and power. (Genre: Action; Rating: Teen; Estimated Retail Price: $49.95 U.S.)

Impossible Creatures

Microsoft Game Studios also will roar out of the gates in 2003 with
“Impossible Creatures,”
set to launch in early January. Building on the popularity of traditional real-time strategy games, the fast-paced
“Impossible Creatures”
allows gamers to create an army of
units by mixing and matching various animal parts. Employing the powers of each animal they’re composed of, the creatures set out to protect an unsuspecting world from a horrible fate.

All these titles can be acquired through authorized Microsoft PC games distributors, as well as from .

About Microsoft Game Studios

Microsoft Game Studios is a leading worldwide publisher and developer of games for the PC, Xbox video game system and online platforms. Comprising a network of top developers, Microsoft Game Studios is committed to creating innovative and diverse game portfolios for the PC ( ), including such franchises as
“Age of Empires® ,” “Flight Simulator”
“Zoo Tycoon”
; Xbox ( ), including such franchises as
“Halo(TM),” “Project Gotham Racing(TM)”
“NFL Fever”
; and ( ), the official games channel for the MSN®
network and home to such hits as

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.

1 NPDTechworld, October 2001–September 2002. Based on total U.S. retail sales.

2 NPDTechworld, August 1992–September 2002. Based on total U.S. retail sales.

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

Microsoft, Age of Mythology, Zoo Tycoon, Marine Mania, Links, Xbox, Asheron’s Call, MechWarrior, Age of Empires, Halo, Project Gotham Racing, MSN and OutSmart 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®
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