EverQuest® Experiences a Record Number of Simultaneous Players; More Than 100,000 EQ Players Swarm Norrath Over Weekend


Sony Online Entertainment Inc. (SOE) announced today that EverQuest®, the most successful online PC role-playing game in history, hosted a milestone number of simultaneous players over the weekend. More than 100,000 clerics, half-elves, gnomes, and other fantasy characters created one of the largest assemblies of game players to date.

(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20011203/LAM002 )

"Reaching such an important milestone is proof that EverQuest continues to enjoy wide popularity bringing people together from all over the world," said John Smedley, senior vice president and chief operating officer, Sony Online Entertainment. "As we continue to expand EverQuest, most recently launching in the Korean market, we expect to surpass even greater milestones in the future. The EverQuest phenomenon is just beginning."

"EverQuest currently has more than 430,000 active subscribers with new fans logging on daily," said Scott McDaniel, vice president of marketing, Sony Online Entertainment. "With recent free additions to the game, including a new user-friendly interface, and more areas to explore, we are confident that EverQuest will continue to dominate the online role-playing game segment."

Since its initial launch in March 1999, the massively multiplayer online game EverQuest has laid the foundation for the successful model of online gaming, spawning three expansion packs and inspiring more than one hundred internet fan sites.

Sony Online Entertainment plans to introduce its fourth EverQuest expansion pack, The Planes of Power™ this fall. Meanwhile, fans continue to demonstrate their enthusiasm at EverQuest Fan Faire events, the periodic gatherings of the most passionate EverQuest fans that began in November 2000. Since then, over 10,000 people have assembled for seven face-to-face Fan Faires across the United States with an eighth sold-out Fan Faire taking place August 2-3, 2002 in Boston, Massachusetts.

Continuing to grow with top-selling expansions The Ruins of Kunark™, The Scars of Velious™, and The Shadows of Luclin™, EverQuest proves to be the largest fantasy world ever created online. The active global EverQuest subscriber base is comprised of players from various countries throughout the "real" world, including the U.S., England, Canada, Japan, Taiwan, Korea, Germany, France, Italy and Australia.

The Station® ( http://www.station.com/ ) is the official provider of EverQuest, with software updates and news about the game, message boards and other community features, as well as an easy-to-use billing system for EverQuest's monthly subscription fee.

Sony Online Entertainment Inc. (SOE), the online gaming division of Sony Pictures Digital Entertainment, is a worldwide leader in massively multiplayer online gaming that creates, develops and provides online entertainment for the personal computer, console, wireless, and online markets. With more than 13 million registered users, SOE's award-winning website, The Station ® ( http://www.station.com/ ) hosts a variety of entertaining games and player communities spanning numerous genres. In addition to blockbuster hits EverQuest® and Jeopardy! Online, SOE has an array of cutting-edge online games in development such as PlanetSide™, Star Wars® Galaxies™, EverQuest® II, and the world's premier online-only console game for the PlayStation®2, EverQuest® Online Adventures™.


Photo: NewsCom: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20011203/LAM002

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SOURCE: Sony Online Entertainment Inc.

CONTACT: Tamara Sanderson of Sony Online Entertainment, +1-858-577-3362,
tsanderson@soe.sony.com; or Brandon McCormick of Access Communications,
+1-415-844-6218, bmccormick@accesspr.com, for Sony Online Entertainment

Web site: http://www.station.com/