LONDON ? April 18, 2007 ? Microsoft Corp. and NAMCO BANDAI Games Inc. today made video game history by announcing the first-ever Xbox 360? ?Pac-Man? World Championship, presented by Quiznos. From 25th April to 9th May, fans of one of the world?s most beloved video games of all time will compete on the classic arcade game via Xbox LIVEŽ Arcade on the Xbox 360 video game and entertainment system, evolving ?Pac-Man? gameplay from the local pizza parlours and arcades of the ?80s to the Xbox 360 and its online gaming community with more than 6 million members. The top finalists from participating countries around the world will be flown to New York City for the finals on 5th June, with the winner being crowned the Xbox 360 ?Pac-Man? World Champion by Toru Iwatani, the creator of ?Pac-Man.?
Since launching in 1980 in Japan and in 1981 around the world, ?Pac-Man,? its host of ghosts and the famous ?wakka wakka wakka? sound have become global pop culture icons. This arcade game played an instrumental role in establishing the video game industry in the ?80s, while the launch of Xbox LIVE in 2002 was a key factor behind the rapid growth in popularity of online gaming. Today, Xbox LIVE Arcade is the premier online destination for digitally distributed, high-definition games ? with more than 25 million downloads ? offering fans of ?Pac-Man? across the globe a great opportunity to connect, compete and enjoy the fun through the Xbox 360 ?Pac-Man? World Championship.
?NAMCO BANDAI Games and I are proud to partner with Microsoft on the Xbox 360 ?Pac-Man? World Championship, which celebrates how popular ?Pac-Man? remains to this day,? said Toru Iwatani, creator of ?Pac-Man? and currently a professor at Tokyo Polytechnic University. ?The success of ?Pac-Man? stems from its fun gameplay and host of characters that have been enjoyed by families for generations. It will be exciting to see ?Pac-Man? fans from around the world compete on Xbox LIVE Arcade to become the first-ever ?Pac-Man? World Champion.?
??Pac-Man? reached an iconic status in the ?80s across multiple generations and cultures, so the Xbox 360 ?Pac-Man? World Championship provides a great incentive for fans old and new to fall in love with the game all over again,? added Jeff Bell, corporate vice president of Global Marketing for Microsoft?s Interactive Entertainment Business. ?We are thrilled to be partnering with NAMCO BANDAI Games and our sponsor, Quiznos, to invite ?Pac-Man? players from around the globe to join in the fun.?
A total of nine finalists in the Xbox 360 ?Pac-Man? World Championship will advance to the finals based upon the highest Xbox LIVE Arcade leaderboard scores. There will be one finalist from each of the following countries and geographic areas: Asia, Australia/New Zealand, Canada, Japan and Mexico; and two finalists from Europe and the United States. This group will also be joined by the winner of the ?Pac-Man? FANatic contest, a competition that will encourage ?Pac-Man? fans from the United States and Canada to submit a video that demonstrates why they are the ultimate ?Pac-Man? fan. The winning entry will be flown to New York as a wildcard entrant in the final round of the tournament. Details are available online at http://www.xboxlivetournament.com starting 25th April 2007.
The Xbox 360 ?Pac-Man? World Champion will receive worldwide acclaim from being the first-ever Xbox 360 ?Pac-Man? World Champion and gain a place in gaming history. The winner of the finals will also receive other great prizes, including 26 years of free Quiznos toasted subs (one sandwich a week for 26 years, a $13,520 (U.S.) value), 100,000 Microsoft Points for games, movies and other fun content available on Xbox LIVE, and a one-of-a-kind Xbox 360 featuring a special design inspired by ?Pac-Man.?
?Great food and entertainment go hand in hand, and we expect international gamers to connect with Quiznos food with the same passion that they bring to their gaming,? said Steve Provost, executive vice president and chief marketing officer for Quiznos. ?The Xbox 360 ?Pac-Man? World Championship promises to be a milestone moment in video game history, and we?re thrilled that we can help make it into a reality.?
Xbox 360 ?Pac-Man? World Championship, Presented by QuiznosParticipation Information and Timeline:
- Gamers who want to start practicing can download ?Pac-Man? (400 Microsoft Points) now from Xbox LIVE Arcade on the Xbox 360.
- Starting 25th April 2007, at 00:01GMT/ 01:01 CET, gamers can visit http://www.xboxlivetournament.com to register and review full eligibility criteria, regulations and rules.
- Also on 25th April 2007, at 00:01 GMT / 01:01 CET, the worldwide competition will officially kick off on Xbox LIVE Arcade.
- Previous leaderboard scores for ?Pac-Man? will be deleted to provide a clean and fair slate for all gamers participating in the Xbox 360 ?Pac-Man? World Championship.
- Concurrently, ?Pac-Man? fans in the United States and Canada can also enter the ?Pac-Man? FANatic contest and receive an invitation to compete in the finals in New York City. Starting 25th April 2007, they can visit http://www.xboxlivetournament.com for more information on how to submit a creative video that best illustrates their love for ?Pac-Man.?
- On 9th May 2007, at 23:59 GMT / 00:59 CET, the competition will officially cease and nine finalists from the identified regions, based on the top leaderboard scores,* will advance to the Xbox 360 ?Pac-Man? World Championship.
- Before 1st June 2007, the top nine finalists will be announced.
- The nine finalists will also be joined in New York City by the winner of the ?Pac-Man? FANatic contest, and compete for the Xbox 360 ?Pac-Man? World Championship title on 5th June 2007, in New York City.
For a complete list of participating countries and country-specific eligibility criteria, rules and regulations and to sign up for the Xbox 360 ?Pac-Man? World Championship, gamers can visit http://www.xboxlivetournament.com starting 25th April, 2007.