One of the Most Highly Anticipated Games in Entertainment History Will Launch at More Than 1,300 EB Games Stores at Special "Midnight Madness" Events
EB Games (Electronics Boutique Holdings Corp.)(NASDAQ:ELBO) will launch "Halo 2(R)," the successor to the largest selling Xbox game to date, at midnight on Monday, November 8th. The title will launch at more than 1,300 EB Games storefronts across the nation, giving hundreds of thousands of diehard fans the opportunity to be among the first to purchase "Halo 2" at EB Games' special "Midnight Madness" events. EB Games' premiere "Halo 2" launch event will be held at its recently opened flag ship store location on the famed Universal CityWalk in Los Angeles.
"Halo 2," the long-awaited sequel to the legends of "Halo: Combat Evolved(R)," has eclipsed 1.5 million in pre-orders worldwide. It will be released exclusively for the Xbox. With more than five million units sold worldwide, the Halo franchise, which includes the first release of "Halo" (2001) and now "Halo 2" (2004), has received worldwide recognition and critical acclaim -- raising the bar for first-person shooter games.
The title's launch before crowds of excited fans at the EB Games' Midnight Madness events is expected to attract the core of the dedicated game fan community from cities across the U.S. Pre-order customers, who are expected to line up by the hundreds at each store location in anticipation of the midnight launch, will be able to enjoy a true gaming environment as they eagerly await a sneak peek at the coveted title with other fans and peers.
The "Halo 2" midnight launch event in Los Angeles -- one of the largest expected gathering of any of the chain's locations -- will mark the first major video gaming community celebration for the new EB Games CityWalk location. The store, which is located in the heart of Universal's famed entertainment and shopping mecca, is recognized by the video gaming community as the interactive gaming "hub" of the West Coast. "Halo 2" fans at the CityWalk location will be able to enjoy "Halo 2" game play, preview never-before-seen upcoming Xbox games on the Xbox Console Coach, listen to live DJ music from one of the city's most popular local radio stations, and participate in the opportunity to win prize giveaways.
"EB Games prides itself on being one of the first national retailers to consistently deliver the industry's hottest and most eagerly awaited titles to our loyal gamers," said Debbie Mola, divisional vice president of merchandising for EB Games, the leading global specialty retailer of interactive entertainment products and the premier gaming retailer for game consumers of all ages. "`Halo 2' is one of the most sought-after gaming franchises and we expect it to be one of the biggest launches in our company's history. We're pleased to give the video gaming community its first chance to experience the title's critically acclaimed graphics and intense multiplayer action sequences."
"Halo 2," which is developed by Bungie Studios and published by Microsoft Game Studios, delivers game play scenarios that are sure to please the massive Xbox fan base. In "Halo 2," the saga of the Halo series continues as Master Chief -- a tenacious, heavily armored super-soldier -- is the only thing standing between the relentless Covenant and the destruction of all humankind. The sequel includes many of the features players have been begging for, including all-new and significantly improved graphics, new environments and locations, new weapons, vehicles and full support for Xbox LIVE multiplayer action.
Pre-order fans participating in the special EB Games' Midnight Madness events will have the opportunity to purchase either the regular "Halo 2" game, priced at $49.99, or the special limited edition two-DVD disc set, priced at $54.99, which includes "The Making of `Halo 2': Behind the Scenes at Bungie Studios"; added featurettes on game design, animation, and music; more deleted cinematic and character background; art gallery anecdotes; and commentaries from the development team.