NEWS - Monday, May 12, 2003

MS's Innovative New Features and Titles

Rare announces details on the return of Conker and two new titles: - "Grabbed by the Ghoulies." Rare's first Xbox-exclusive game since Microsoft acquired the company in September 2002, "Grabbed by the Ghoulies" is a fun and chaotic beat-'em-up game that pits the brave and endearing Cooper against the Ghoulies that have captured his girlfriend. It ships holiday 2003. - "Conker: Live and Uncut." Rare's "Conker" is back in an all-new Xbox Live-enabled team-based shooter focused on story-driven scenarios. With a wide variety of customizable multiplayer scenarios, teamwork and fun) is what "Conker" is all about. Each scenario has its own objectives, rules, environment and back story, adding emotional context to the genre. It ships in 2004. - "Kameo: Elements of Power." This is an action-adventure game set in a fantastic kingdom of monsters and magic. Players become "Kameo," a princess on a mission to rescue her three Elemental Ancestors from the Dark Troll King, who has plans to dominate the fantasy planet's wildlife. It ships in 2004. Along with the announcements from Rare, Microsoft released some details on its methods to further expand its popular Xbox Live service. - Xbox Live Alerts. Gamers can receive invitations to play on their personal digital assistant (PDA), cell phone or PC with MSN(R) Messenger Service. - Xbox Live Web. Xbox Live stats and friends lists will be available to view through a new Xbox site that links to the service. -- Xbox Live Aware Games. More games will allow users to be "logged on" while playing, even as a single player, so they can receive invitations and keep up with what their friends are doing. -- Teams and Competition. New features on Xbox Live will make it easy for gamers to form teams with friends, and create and participate in structured competitions on the Web and in games. -- Xbox Live Now. Gamers will have a place to meet and can use voice chat to determine where to begin their gaming experience. They can decide which game to play and how to team up, and chat after the game. XSN Sports, appears to be one of the first of its kind, allowing sports fans to compete beyond the game. - Virtual leagues. Teams, leagues and schedules can be organized easily from a centralized Web site, - Check stats on a virtual sports page. Xbox Live will automatically broadcast up-to-date scores, standings and stats to every 15 minutes. For the first time, gamers can scout the career stats of their next opponent. - Competition for the digital lifestyle. XSN Sports will keep gamers plugged in -- on the Web, on their cell, on their Xbox -- where their game is the center of the action. - Train to be a multisport champion. The XSN Sports lineup will enable gamers to be a one-sport star or even an eight Microsoft's "Music Mixer" will help to turn the Xbox into more of an entertainment system, than purely one for gaming. - With digital lyric-stripping technology, "Music Mixer" will provide a limitless karaoke experience, letting Xbox players sing along to millions of songs. - Players can mix, match, shuffle and customize soundtracks, setting the mood for any situation. Players can enhance the music experience with the addition of interactive 2-D and 3-D on-screen visualizers. - With PC media sharing, Xbox players will be able to easily transfer their digital music and photos from their PC to their Xbox system, creating the ultimate multimedia library to be enjoyed in the social center of the home: the living room. In the next few days expect many more announcements as E3 progresses.

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