Over One Million Consumers Join Forces With SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs Extending The Popularity of PlayStation®2 Online Gaming

First-Ever Console Online Military Shooter Reaches Unprecedented Sales Figures in Six Months; Killer Application Leads Consumers Online via PlayStation 2


Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. today announced that sales and online usage of SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs for the PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system has reached an industry high and set a new standard for online console gaming. Since its release on August 27, 2002 in conjunction with the Network Adaptor (Ethernet/modem) (for PlayStation®2), the gateway into the world of online gaming, the company has sold more than one million units of SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs nationwide.

(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20000510/SFW104-a )

Market reaction to SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs demonstrates the broad appeal of its authentic military gameplay and underscores consumers' commitment to online gaming on PlayStation 2. More than 30 percent of all users are active online, racking up around 8.5 million player hours since the beginning of the year alone. In the past week, online gameplay exceeded 1,000,000 hours just for SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs. On a daily basis, between 50,000 and 60,000 people host online sessions, with up to 13,000 users playing simultaneously for three hours on average. Currently only available in North America, the global company is preparing to release SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs in Europe, Japan and Korea.

"With the USB headset bundled in with SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs, PlayStation 2 consumers are provided with a unique tool to begin their online experience for SOCOM and many more online titles to come," said Jack Tretton, executive vice president, Sony Computer Entertainment America. "This strong demand demonstrates the popularity and mass appeal of SOCOM while reinforcing the fact that millions of consumers are making PlayStation 2 their first choice in online gaming. Due to the engaging multi-player gaming experience found in SOCOM, we expect demand to remain high and continue to be a driving force for sales of the Network Adaptor for PlayStation 2."

"Due to the solid gameplay and revolutionary features such as 16-player gameplay and voice-chat, SOCOM has been one of the driving factors leading people online with PlayStation 2," said Pete Roithmayr, vice-president, EB Games. "Since its release, SOCOM has been flying off our shelves and influencing sales of the network adaptor while establishing a new standard for online console games and proving that online gaming is definitely in high demand for the next era of software titles."

Developed exclusively for the PlayStation 2 computer entertainment system by Zipper Interactive, Inc. and Sony Computer Entertainment America's Foster City studio, SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs allows users to experience realistic intense, military team combat action by becoming an elite SEAL commander trained to take down hostile forces throughout the world. As one of the first titles developed to capture a console online gaming audience, SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs supports up to 16 players per game via a broadband connection. In an online environment, teamwork is crucial and one of the product's key features is the ability to communicate with other players and artificial intelligence using voice-recognition technology through the use of the SOCOM USB headset over the Internet, as well as in offline gampelay. Gamers can experience the technological capabilities of PlayStation 2 by playing in a thrilling simulation of the U.S. Navy SEAL experience, through revolutionary voice-chat technology in both on- and off-line gameplay.

The independent Entertainment Software Rating Board (ESRB) has rated SOCOM: U.S. Navy SEALs a "M" for Mature. For more information about the ERSB visit www.esrb.com.

About Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc.

Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc. continues to redefine the entertainment lifestyle with its PlayStation® and PS one™ 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 family of products and develops, publishes, markets and distributes software for the PS one 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.

Visit us on the Web at http://www.playstation.com/ .

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SOURCE: Sony Computer Entertainment America Inc.

CONTACT: Patrick Seybold, +1-650-655-5904, or
patrick_seybold@playstation.sony.com, or Ryan Bowling, +1-650-655-3657, or
ryan_bowling@playstation.sony.com, both of Sony Computer Entertainment America

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

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