989 Sports'™ NFL GameDay™ 2001 Kicks Off for the Playstation® 2 Computer Entertainment System

Original PlayStation® Game Console Football Franchise Leaps to PlayStation 2 With Realistic Graphics, Detailed Player Models and Advanced GamePlay


Continuing the tradition of delivering intense NFL football action through amazing gameplay and stunning visuals, NFL GameDay™ 2001 from the 989 Sports™ development team hits store shelves this week for the PlayStation® 2 computer entertainment system, Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. announced. NFL GameDay 2001 features NFL teams and players, 3D player and stadium models scaled with incredible detail and realism and more than 1,100 position-specific motion-captured moves from 14 NFL players. Longtime favorites Dick Enberg and Phil Simms add to the GameDay experience with their famous and significantly broadened play-by-play commentary.

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The gritty football action and award-winning gameplay that GameDay fans appreciate and love is brought to life like never before with new visual breakthroughs including the exclusive new ProTalk™ feature. Gamers can now actually see animated lip-service offered up by players and referees, adding to the total NFLexperience. NFL GameDay 2001 sports realistic graphics with each NFL player depicted in amazing detail as they are scaled to their actual size, weight and body style. Utilizing the technology afforded by the new PlayStation 2, details such as actual player faces, skin tones, face mask styles, jerseys, arm bands and neck rolls make the players on the field appear to be as close to the real thing as possible. Stadium interiors are richly detailed and enhanced by animated backgrounds and historic landmarks and during the game, players will actually experience wear and tear on the playing field.

"NFL GameDay 2001 for the PlayStation 2 will thrill fans of the franchise as the 989 Sports development team has brought the integrity of the GameDay experience to a whole new level," said Ami Blaire, director, product marketing, Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. "The 989 Sports team is tapping into the capabilities of the PlayStation 2 to create an amazing looking title with great gameplay and true-to-life, gritty football action."

NFL GameDay 2001's unprecedented 60 frames-per-second gameplay allows gamers to feel the smoothest and most responsive gameplay ever created. For the first time, each player occupies their own personal, 3D space, allowing gamers to move around the field like a true ball carrier during an NFL game. Smarter Artificial Intelligence (A.I.) has computer-controlled opponents exposing tendencies on both the offense and defense. The signature Total Control Passing™ feature allows players to lead or under throw receivers in any direction by simply pressing the directional buttons putting gamers in total control.

Now, NFL GameDay 2001 features animations including drag downs, shoves, gang tackles, low and high-wrap tackles, upending tackles, across-the-body "shoestring" catches, sideline "tip-toe" catches and one-handed catches that help capture the intensity of real NFL action. Players can even break ankle tackles and drag would-be tacklers on second and third efforts.

NFL GameDay 2001 reflects the latest NFL trends through actual NFL player input -- from motion-captured animations to plays designed with the help of real NFL players. Players motion captured for the NFL GameDay series are among the game's top names, Buccaneers FB Mike Alstott, Steelers RB Jerome Bettis, Raiders WR Tim Brown, and Giants CB Jason Sehorn. Among the more than 55 NFL pro stars creating the authentic playbooks for NFL GameDay 2001 were Buccaneers DL Warren Sapp, Vikings QB Daunte Culpepper, Bengals RB Corey Dillon and Dolphins LB Zach Thomas.

GameDay includes many of the features that gamers have come to expect such as the "General Manager Mode" that lets the gamer play in multiple seasons as a coach, player or general manager. The "Draft War Room" feature provides the gamer with a report of team weaknesses allowing players to determine needs on draft day. Gamers can control the everyday activities of a team over several seasons while drafting, trading and signing free agent players. The revolutionary "Play Editor" lets the gamer design custom plays and save them to a playbook.

Players can also direct how and where each player will move by assigning individual routes, blocking schemes and defensive alignments and assignments. NFL GameDay 2001 has also refined the "Create Player" feature, allowing gamers to customize a player's physical appearance, salary and mental makeup.

Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. is supporting the product launch with television and print advertising, direct mail, national promotions and online efforts. A dedicated thirty-second spot will air on national network, cable and syndication programming, and major print advertising in the form of four-color spread and full-page advertisements will appear in major sports, consumer and gaming publications. At retail, NFL GameDay 2001 will be showcased with point-of-purchase displays including posters, oversized dummy boxes and tent cards.

NFL GameDay 2001 for the PlayStation 2 Computer Entertainment System Key Features:

  -- Award-winning signature gameplay including a new feature that allows
     gamers to see and listen to the emotion of the NFL like never before
     with the exclusive ProTalk™ feature, where timed, lip-synched
     animations bring athletes, coaches and referees to life
  -- Hundreds of new plays designed with the help of 55 NFL players
     containing the latest trends, formations and plays
  -- All-new 3D player and stadium models and tons of motion captured
     animations from 14 different NFL players
  -- NFL teams and players scaled to actual height, weight and body style
  -- Amazing visuals including accurate player details such as visors,
     wristbands and gloves
  -- New action-moves such as across-your-body catches, sideline "Tip-Toe"
     catches and one-handed catches help add to the excitement of the pros
  -- New flip tackles add excitement and extend the intensity and dynamics
     of true pro football
  -- Actual NFL stadiums feature historic landmarks and grass that
     experience wear and tear as the game progresses
  -- Play-by-play legend Dick Enberg and color commentator Phil Simms return
     with broader and more conversational commentary and insight
  -- In-depth NFL player ratings and updated 2000 team rosters, including
     rookies, free agent signings and trades
  -- "GM Mode" lets the gamer be the coach, player or general manager over
     multiple seasons, operating with a salary cap.  The new "Draft War
     Room" feature alerts player to team weaknesses.  Create, draft, sign,
     trade and release players and free agents -- just like a real GM
  -- In-game help menus assist new users who are unfamiliar with the in-game
  -- Team match-ups detail offensive and defensive strengths and weaknesses
  -- Design plays and save them to a custom playbook with the revolutionary
     "Play Editor" allowing gamers to direct how and where players move by
     assigning pass routes, blocking schemes and defensive maneuvers
  -- Create a player with the updated "Create Player" feature -- customize a
     player's physical appearance, such as face style, face mask, neck
     rolls, salary and mental makeup
  -- Players perform as in real-life:  Marshall Faulk jukes to elude
     flailing arms, Eddie George punishes would-be tacklers and Randy Moss
     elevates over shorter defenders to grab the deep ball
  -- Multiple weather conditions including wind, snow and rain as well as
     player injuries affect gameplay, testing gamers true skills and
  -- Comprehensive season statistical tracking in 163 categories -- for
     either a team or a player
  -- Gameplay modes include preseason, 2000-2001 NFL season play, playoffs,
     Super Bowl™ and Pro Bowl™
  -- Pro Bowl selections are based upon the current season with weekly
     voting updates
  -- "Throwback" uniforms let gamers relive the past with a favorite team
  -- Includes every past Super Bowl team such as the '75 Steelers, '85 Bears
     and '94 49ers
  -- Genuine NFL stadium, game and crowd sounds
  -- Four playing perspectives and a free-floating 3D camera for dynamic
     TV-style presentation
  -- Four levels of difficulty -- Rookie, Veteran, All-Pro and Hall of Fame
  -- Complete substitution capability
  -- Up to 8 players with Multitap (for PlayStation 2)
  -- Officially licensed by the NFL and PLAYERS INC

The independent Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) rates NFL GameDay 2001 "E" for "Everyone." For more information about the ESRB visit http://www.esrb.org/.

989 Sports is the sports software brand of Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. Known for its top-selling sports franchise titles such as NFL GameDay™, MLB™, NBA ShootOut, NHL FaceOff™, NCAA® Final Four® and NCAA® GameBreaker™, 989 Sports is committed to developing authentic and innovative sports games to appeal to both the professional athlete and hard- core sports videogame fan.

Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. continues to redefine the entertainment lifestyle with its PlayStation® game console and the 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 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: Jamie Tica of Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc.,
858-824-5854, or jamie_tica@playstation.sony.com; or Chris Overholser of
Fleishman-Hillard, 213-489-8239, or overholc@fleishman.com

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

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