Spyro: Year of the Dragon ™ Heats Up the Holiday Season on the PlayStation® Game Console

Third Installment of the Popular Franchise Is the Biggest Adventure Yet


Sony Computer Entertainment America announced today the nationwide release of Spyro: Year of the Dragon™, available exclusively for the new PS one™ console and the PlayStation game console. The third installment of the popular, multi-million-unit selling, Spyro the Dragon™ franchise, Spyro: Year of the Dragon combines the signature style of the first two games in the series with a new cast of characters and a variety of new gameplay elements, delivering the most exciting adventure in the series yet!

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Spyro: Year of the Dragon features four all-new playable characters, 30 completely new worlds and more than 37 levels in all. The game boasts a wide variety of mini-games-including skateboarding and boxing-hidden within the levels, as well as a slew of mini-bosses that will test the mettle of our fire-breathing friend.

Developed and designed by Insomniac Games and produced in association with Cerny Games, produced by Universal Interactive Studios and published by Sony Computer Entertainment America, Spyro: Year of the Dragon is an extension of the first true, free-roaming 3D action platform game for the PlayStation game console.

"Spyro: Year of the Dragon is the best game in the series yet," said Ami Blaire, director, product marketing, Sony Computer Entertainment America. "Gamers will certainly appreciate the true signature style gameplay of the Spyro the Dragon series, but this time, they will also enjoy new playable critters and completely new and more challenging gameplay elements."

Since 1998, the combined Spyro franchises have sold over 3.2 million copies in the U.S. and over four million copies worldwide. Spyro: Year of the Dragon maintains all the key elements of the popular hit series by providing strong fundamental gameplay, broadly appealing characters, entertaining lip-synched animation and a friendly learning curve that will appeal to gamers of all ages and skill levels.

In Spyro: Year of the Dragon, Spyro and Sparx are back and ready to take on an eggs-cellent new adventure! Every twelve years, the Dragon Kingdom celebrates its most coveted event: the "Year of the Dragon" Festival. As the celebration begins, fairies deliver a new batch of 150 dragon eggs, and dragons come from all around to dance and feast until everyone drops from ... eggs-haustion.

Unbeknownst to the dragons, however, a sinister plot is hatching somewhere far away -- on the opposite side of the world -- in the kingdom long since forgotten by dragonkind. So forgotten, in fact, that even the legends about these "Forgotten Worlds" have now been forgotten. This kingdom is ruled by an evil Sorceress who has frankly, become quite fed up with being forgotten. Sitting on her forgotten throne, the Sorceress has hatched a fiendish plan. A plan to restore the fading magic to her forgotten realm. A plan to conquer the dragons once and for all. All she needs is a little help from her army of horn-nosed 'Rhynocs', the cooperation of her mysterious disciple Bianca and of course, those 150 magical dragon eggs.

The kidnapped dragon eggs have been scattered by the Sorceress throughout the four Forgotten Worlds. Now it's up to Spyro and Sparx to recover all of the dragon eggs and restore peace and harmony to Dragon Shores. Along the way, Spyro must enlist the help of his new critter pals, including Bentley the Yeti, Sheila the kangaroo, Sergeant Byrd, a flying penguin and Agent 9, an intelligent lab-monkey!

  Key features in Spyro: Year of the Dragon include:
  -- Exciting single-player action-platform adventure
  -- Challenging new gameplay with a deeper and more complex dynamic that
     will keep gamers enthralled as they explore more than 30 completely new
  -- Experience totally new mini-games:  boxing, skateboarding,
     sharp-shooting and more
  -- All-new Critter challenges offer a whole new level of gameplay.  Four
     brand new playable Critters you control, each with their own special
     abilities to solve puzzles, accomplish new tasks and to come to the
     player's aid when fighting Bosses
  -- The return of favorite characters including Spyro, Sparx, Hunter, the
     Professor and Moneybags, along with a mysterious new Sorceress, Bianca
     and tons of new Critters
  -- All-new vehicles and moves: go deep underwater in a submarine, drive a
     tank, ride a speedboat, pilot a hovercraft and launch to new heights
     with a rocket
  -- Power-ups galore!  Pick up tons of treasure, super-charge your flame,
     spit, speed, gain extra lives and other bonus treats
  -- Completely new structure for the Speed Rounds - the classic Adventure
     mode contains all new power ups including rockets and turbo.  The new
     Race modes challenge players to race against opponents for hours of fun

The independent Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) rates Spyro: Year of the Dragon "E" for "Everyone." For more information about the ESRB visit http://www.esrb.org/.

Founded in 1994, Insomniac Games, Inc. is a multimedia software developer with an exclusive multi-title contract with Universal Interactive Studios, Inc. Insomniac specializes in creating cutting-edge games that break the boundaries of available technology, using real-time 3D technology, graphics and gameplay. The company is based in Universal City, Calif.

Cerny Games is a consulting company providing production, game design and programming services to the videogame development community.

The Spyro the Dragon characters and likenesses are owned by Universal Interactive Studios, Inc. Universal Interactive Studios, Inc., (UIS), develops, produces and licenses original and existing Universal Studios movie and television brands across multiple gaming platforms.

UIS is most noted for producing the best-selling Crash Bandicoot™ and Spyro the Dragon™ franchises for the PlayStation game console. Universal Interactive Studios is a division of Universal Studios (http://www.universalstudios.com/), a diversified entertainment company and a worldwide leader in motion pictures, television, home and location based entertainment. Universal Studios is a unit of The Seagram Company Ltd., a global entertainment and beverage company.

Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. continues to redefine the entertainment lifestyle with its PlayStation® game console and the upcoming PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system. The PlayStation 2 computer entertainment system is set to revolutionize the home entertainment market, offering the most compelling interactive content and the capability to be used as a network terminal in the coming broadband era.

Recognized as the undisputed industry leader, Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. markets the PlayStation game console and develops, publishes, markets and distributes software for the PlayStation game console and the upcoming PlayStation 2 computer entertainment system for the North American market. Based in Foster City, Calif., Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. serves as headquarters for all North American operations and is a wholly-owned subsidiary of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc.

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SOURCE: Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc.

Contact: Charlotte Panther, 650-655-3542, or
charlotte_panther@playstation.sony.com, or Ryan Bowling, 650-655-3657, or
ryan_bowling@playstation.sony.com, both of Sony Computer Entertainment

Website: http://www.universalstudios.com/

Website: http://www.esrb.org/

Website: http://www.playstation.com/