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Microsoft Announces New 'Xbox Live' Features & Titles

by Rainier on June 16, 2004 @ 11:32 a.m. PDT

This summer is going to be a scorcher with the addition of three new features and highly anticipated hits from distinguished third party publishers. With this unrivaled line-up, we plan to deliver on our promise of taking the online gaming experience to an unprecedented level. Read more for new features and 20 upcoming titles supporting Xbox Live!

New Xbox Live Features :

  • MSN Messenger Integration
    • Now there is a greater incentive to sign up on MSN Messenger. Xbox Live members in the United States will see a new Xbox tab along side tabs for shopping, games, news, travel, etc. They’ll find links to Xbox.com content on the latest games, downloads, articles, interviews, tournaments, and events — all updated weekly.
    • In addition, if you hit the My Xbox Live tab up top — and you’re Gamertag linked — you’ll be able to see your Friends List along with links to My Live exclusive content.
  • Xbox Live Alerts
    • When Xbox Live members in the United States and Canada sign up for Xbox Live Alerts, they will be notified when their friends sign on to Xbox Live and when they get a friend request or game invite. Xbox Live will even let them know when new downloads are available and when hot new games are released. To sign for Xbox Live Alerts members will simply visit the website at http://www.xbox.com/en-us/live/default.htm.
  • Xbox Live Arcade
    • Xbox Live is driving the market forward with new and innovative offerings, such as the recently announced Xbox Live Arcade, which will provide fun, engaging digital entertainment to gamers of all levels and interests.
    • Xbox Live Arcade, coming this fall, is a new casual game experience that will bring an added social dimension to the online console environment. A virtual destination within Xbox Live, Xbox Live Arcade will enable Xbox Live members to try out different types of games, download them and then play them with their friends and family around the world. Xbox Live members will find puzzle games, card & board games, social sports, pub games, and classic action/arcade favorites such as “Galaxian,” “Dig Dug,” “Poker,” “Bejeweled” and “Feeding Frenzy.” These games are tailor-made for a quick five minute fix or endless hours of intense fun.

It’s not surprising why members have flocked to the service. Xbox Live supports one Gamertag, voice chat, and MSN alerts across all Live-enabled titles. This unified service offers a number of innovative features to enrich gamers' online experience:

  • Voice Chat. Using the Xbox Communicator headset that comes with every Xbox Live Starter Kit, friends can talk, laugh, strategize and taunt in all Xbox Live games, or in the Xbox Live Now lobby. They can even leave Voice Messages as attachments to game and friend invites.
  • Gamertag. On Xbox Live, players have a single persistent identity across the entire service, making it easy to build and grow their online reputation.
  • Friends List. Using their unique Gamertags, players can find their friends online and invite them to a game, no matter which Xbox Live game they’re playing.
  • Live Alerts: Players can receive a game invite on their PDA, cell phone or PC with instant messenger through MSN Alerts – something only available through Xbox Live.
  • Live Web: Live stats and friends lists are available to view through a new Xbox site that links to the service – something only available on Xbox Live.
  • Live Aware: More games allow players to be “logged on” while playing, even if playing single player so they can receive invites, and keep up with what their friends are doing.

Blockbuster Titles:

At the E3 press briefing on May 10, 2004, we announced an exciting partnership with Electronic Arts (EA) that will bring many of EA’s award-winning, critically acclaimed major franchises to Xbox Live. The first EA title to make its debut on Xbox Live this July is the highly anticipated “NCAA® Football 2005”, quickly followed by the hugely popular “Madden NFL 2005” in August.

In addition, more than 20 titles are expected to hit Xbox Live in the next few months that will incorporate the great features listed above:

  • “Full Spectrum Warrior” (June 2004)
  • “MLB SlugFest: Loaded” (June 21, 2004)
  • “ESPN NFL 2K5” (August 2004)
  • “NCAA® Football 2005” (July 2004)
  • “Madden NFL 2005” (August 2004)
  • “Rainbow Six Black Arrow” (August 2004)
  • “NASCAR® 2005: Chase for the Cup™” (August 2004)
  • “NHL® 2005” (September 2004)
  • “Mortal Kombat: Deception” (October 2004)
  • “NBA LIVE 2005” (October 2004)
  • “FIFA Soccer 2005” (October 2004)
  • “Star Wars Battlefront” (September 21, 2004)
  • “Burnout®3: TakedownTM” (September 2004)
  • “Tiger Woods PGA TOUR® 2005” (September 2004)
  • “Outrun 2” ( October 2004)
  • “NCAA® March Madness™ 2005” (November 2004)
  • “ESPN College Hoops 2K5” (Nov 2004)
  • “ESPN NHL 2K5” (November 2004)
  • “ESPN NBA 2K5” (November 2004)
  • “Unreal Championship 2” (Holiday 2004)
  • “Halo 2” (November 9, 2004)
  • “GoldenEye: Rogue Agent™” (Fall 2004)
  • “Need for Speed™ Underground 2” (Fall 2004)
  • “Forza” (Winter 2004)
  • “Call of Duty” (Q4 2004)
  • “MechAssault 2” (January 2005)
  • “Doom 3” (When it’s done)

With more than 150 Live-enabled games planned for availability by the end of the calendar year, there is no question why Xbox Live has the undisputed best online games available on the market. Xbox Live is the evolving, dynamic gaming service that continues to bring people together to share experiences, from social gameplay to healthy competition.

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