MADDEN, Miss. — Aug. 22, 2006 — Microsoft Corp. and Electronic Arts Inc. today declared “Maddenoliday” in Madden, Miss. (pop. 74), joining forces to celebrate the launch of “Madden NFL™ 07” on Xbox 360™, the only next-generation console available at the beginning of the football season for fans to experience the new and exciting features of the most popular sports game in the country. As part of the celebration, NFL greats Jerry Rice, Warren Moon and Marshall Faulk surprised the town by giving away free Xbox 360 units to all Madden residents in a small-town ceremony, while hundreds of families from surrounding communities were among the first in the country to play “Madden NFL 07” on Xbox 360 kiosks.
“After 16 years of fanaticism for the ‘Madden NFL’ franchise, Xbox 360 felt that Madden, Miss., was the perfect place to memorialize the annual pigskin tradition of fans rushing to get the latest version of ‘Madden NFL’ before football season starts,” said Peter Moore, corporate vice president of the Interactive Entertainment Business in the Entertainment and Devices Division of Microsoft. “Madden, Miss., has enormous enthusiasm for enjoying football with friends and family, and now all the residents of Madden can enjoy ‘Madden NFL 07’ as it was meant to be played: on Xbox 360.”
“The ‘Madden NFL’ franchise continues to be the most authentic and best-selling sports game on the market and is a cultural phenomenon,” added Chris Erb, marketing director at Electronic Arts. “With more than 51 million copies of ‘Madden’ sold to date, fans are eager to experience the significantly enhanced gameplay and new running game features of ‘Madden NFL 07,’ providing them the closest in-game experience possible beyond actually playing in the NFL.”
The town of Madden, located in Leake County, shares the same name as the popular video game. Nestled between Carthage and Philadelphia in central Mississippi (70 miles northeast of Jackson), the rural community, whose main industries are chicken and dairy farming, provided a middle-America backdrop to the launch of an all-American video game that continues to reign supreme as the pre-eminent sports title in the video game industry.
Joining the celebration was seven-term Rep. Bennie G. Thompson (D-Miss.), the longest-serving African-American elected official in Mississippi and whose congressional district includes Madden.
“Madden, Miss., may be a small town, but today we feel like we’re the center of the football universe with Microsoft and Electronic Arts visiting our community,” Thompson said. “The entire state of Mississippi is thrilled to be part of the festivities for ‘Maddenoliday’ on a day that will put Madden, Miss., on the map forever.”
New “Madden NFL 07” Features on Xbox 360
This year’s game on Xbox 360 is loaded with all-new features that provide fans with a much deeper gameplay experience:
New Run to Daylight features. The running game is made more authentic, easy-to-use and fun through innovative blocking controls and a highlight stick that allows player-specific running styles and moves to match those of their real-life counterparts in the NFL.
Mini-Camp, including create-a-player.
NFL Superstar, Hall of Fame Mode.
Madden Gamer Level.
Xbox Live online integration. New head-to-head challenges are part of the “Madden NFL 07” franchise mode.
About Xbox and Xbox 360
Microsoft revolutionized the gaming industry with the November 2001 launch of Xbox® (http://www.xbox.com), its first-generation video game and entertainment system, now sold in 26 countries. Microsoft introduced its next-generation system, Xbox 360, in the 2005 holiday season in Europe, Japan and North America, and launched the system in Australia, Colombia, Hong Kong, Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Singapore and Taiwan in 2006. Xbox 360 (http://www.xbox.com/xbox360) is the most powerful video game and entertainment system, delivering the best games, the next generation of the premier Xbox Live® online gaming network, and unique digital entertainment experiences that revolve around gamers.
About Xbox Live
Xbox Live is the first and only unified online entertainment network seamlessly integrated throughout the entire console experience, making it easy for people to find the friends, games and entertainment they want from the moment they power on their Xbox 360 system. Xbox Live connects millions of members across 24 countries to enjoy hundreds of multiplayer games, downloadable games via Xbox Live Arcade, free and premium playable game demos, music videos, and movie trailers, as well as new game levels, characters and vehicles for all their favorite retail games. More information can be found online at http://www.xbox.com/en-us/live.
About Electronic Arts
Electronic Arts Inc. (EA), (Nasdaq: “ERTS”), headquartered in Redwood City, California, is the world’s leading interactive entertainment software company. Founded in 1982, the company develops, publishes, and distributes interactive software worldwide for videogame systems, personal computers and the Internet. Electronic Arts markets its products under four brand names: EA SPORTS™, EA™, EA SPORTS BIG™ and POGO™. In fiscal 2006, EA posted revenue of $2.95 billion and had 27 titles that sold more than one million copies. EA’s homepage and online game site is www.ea.com. More information about EA’s products and full text of press releases can be found on the Internet at http://info.ea.com.
Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq “MSFT”) is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.
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.mspx.