NEW YORK, Feb. 17, 2004 — Adults and kids alike will walk with the animals when a new, graphically stunning 3-D version of America’s best-selling* virtual zoo debuts on store shelves this fall. Microsoft® Game Studios today announced it will launch “Zoo Tycoon (TM) 2,” the long-awaited sequel to the award-winning “Zoo Tycoon” game for Windows®
from Blue Fang Games LLC in time for holiday gift-giving. “Zoo Tycoon 2” adds a spectacular new chapter to the wildly popular franchise, which has earned accolades from Child Magazine, Children’s Software Revue and the Parents’ Choice Foundation, and was awarded the prestigious Bologna New Media Prize for its fusion of education and entertainment.
Microsoft’s “Zoo Tycoon 2” cranks up the excitement, challenge and fun of building the ultimate zoo, with 30 animals in incredible detail with more fun animations and a dazzling array of building tools and objects, including easier terrain-altering options, scenery, foliage, themed buildings, animal shelters and moats. Gameplay has been enhanced from that of the original title, with a new zoom feature and 3-D graphics that allow players to keep a closer eye on the action and craft more-creative zoos.
Easy to start and easy to play, “Zoo Tycoon 2” gets players up close and interacting with the animals and zoo, offering intuitive controls and fun tutorials that allow players of all ages to enjoy the game right out of the box. Players are immersed in the zoo experience with new features including the Zoo Guest mode, in which players can walk around and enjoy the game like visitors on a day at the zoo; Zoo Keeper mode, which allows players to interact with their animals as never before; and a new Photo Mode. Players can take pictures of their favorite animals and guests and share them online with friends. A Zoopedia, chock full of entertaining and interesting facts about animals, rounds out the new and improved features of the upcoming game.
Unlike the original “Zoo Tycoon,” the new version allows players to participate in up to three challenging gameplay types: Campaign, Freeform and Sandbox.
“‘Zoo Tycoon’ has been a perennial top-10 game since its launch in 2001. ‘Zoo Tycoon 2’ raises the bar for all ‘Tycoon’ and simulation games and is a truly revolutionary step for the franchise,” said Adam Kovach, product manager at Microsoft Game Studios. “Players of all ages and at all skill levels can experience and enjoy a level of detail and immersiveness that just hasn’t been available in simulated zoo games before.”
About “Zoo Tycoon”
“Zoo Tycoon” has been the top-selling “Tycoon” game title in dollars since its launch in 2001.* Simple to play yet challenging to master, “Zoo Tycoon” offers engaging gameplay for animal lovers and simulation game fans of all ages. The captivating imagery, clever gameplay and interactive tutorials in the vibrant and appealing “Zoo Tycoon” make it easy to play right out of the box. “Zoo Tycoon” has something for everyone, stimulating creativity and imagination as players respond to the needs of the animals and guests. Additional information is available at http://www.zootycoon.com/ .
About Blue Fang Games
Blue Fang Games LLC is a computer game development company located outside Boston. The company was founded by Adam Levesque and John Wheeler, two former Papyrus Design Group veterans who led the development of the best-selling and critically acclaimed NASCAR racing series. Formed in July 1998, Blue Fang developed the best-selling game for Windows, “Zoo Tycoon,” as well as the “Zoo Tycoon: Dinosaur Digs” and “Zoo Tycoon: Marine Mania®
” expansion packs. Blue Fang Games is located on the Internet at http://www.bluefang.com/ .
About Microsoft Game Studios
Microsoft Game Studios is a leading worldwide publisher and developer of games for the Xbox®
video game system and Windows and online platforms. Comprising a network of top developers, Microsoft Game Studios is committed to creating innovative and diverse games for Windows ( http://www.microsoft.com/games/ ), including such franchises as “Age of Empires® ,” “Flight Simulator” and “Zoo Tycoon”; Xbox (http://www.xbox.com/), including such franchises as “Halo® ,” “Project Gotham Racing® ” and “NFL Fever”; and Zone.com (Error! Hyperlink reference not valid. the official games channel for the MSN® network and home to such hits as “Bejeweled” and “OutSmart®
Founded in 1975, Microsoft Corp. (Nasdaq “MSFT”) 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.
* NPDFunworldSM, Jan. 26–Feb. 1, 2004. Based on total U.S. retail sales.
Microsoft, Zoo Tycoon, Windows, Marine Mania, Xbox, 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 Web page at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/ on Microsoft’s corporate information pages. Web links, telephone numbers and titles were correct at time of publication, but may since have changed. For additional assistance, journalists and analysts may contact Microsoft’s Rapid Response Team or other appropriate contacts listed at http://www.microsoft.com/presspass/contactpr.asp .