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1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 = £4.99

Sold Out, the UK's premier publisher of value PC titles, will have the nation's legion of avid Sudoku fans staring hard at their screens with the addition of The Sudoku Challenge to its £4.99 range this August.

Sudoku is the frightening addictive craze that's sweeping the world. Originally published in Japan in the late 1980's - Sudoku means 'number allotted' in Japanese - puzzles can now be found in every British national newspaper and hundreds more worldwide. The puzzle consists of a 9x9 grid divided into nine 3x3 boxes and the only rule is that every row, column and 3x3 box needs to contain the digits 1 to 9. The appeal of the puzzles is obvious - no maths skills are required, just logic, cunning and common sense.

Whist Sudoku has swept all before it in the world of newspapers and books, PC users wanting to tackle their favourite puzzles have not been well-served until now. The Sudoku Challenge goes far beyond the traditional offerings, with thousands of puzzles to solve. Beginners can use the feature that checks whether each number is correct as they enter in into the grid, to help them get a feel for the puzzles. Each member of the household can create their own profile and save their high scores to see who is the sharpest of them all!

In the midst of such innovations, one feature will be instantly recognisable to all experienced Sudoku solvers - the ability to jot down tiny numbers in the game squares, narrowing down the possible solutions for each cell. With difficulty levels ranging from 'simple' to the innocently-named 'hard', gamers will be pleased to know that there's always an electronic eraser on hand as well! And for those who don't have laptops, the program will print out puzzles for the gamer to solve whilst on the move.

The PC game will also be offering the addicted Sudoku enthusiast the facility to purchase a daily puzzle fix direct to their mobile. MAD4G, the mobile phone arm of the Mastertronic Group will launch Mad4Sudoku alongside the release of The Sudoku Challenge making this highly sort after game available on both formats.

"It's not hard to work out why Sold Out are the market leaders," commented Peter Ball, Sales Director for Sold Out. "A book with a measly few hundred puzzles costs more than £4.99. Sold Out is offering over 10 thousand puzzles for only £4.99. We have placed the best version of the game on the market at around half the price most of our competitors are charging."

About Mastertronic Group Limited

Mastertronic is one of the best known electronic entertainment brands in Europe. It pioneered the European console market with its launch of the Sega Master System, invented the budget retail sector and built an international development and publishing operation under the Virgin Mastertronic label.

The brand was subsequently relaunched as The Mastertronic Group Limited in 2003 by founder Frank Herman, together with Andy Payne and Garry Williams.

The Group now leads the European value publishing sector through its retail brands M.A.D. (Mastertronic Added Dimension), Sold Out (the UK's largest-selling budget operation, acquired by the Group in 2004) and PC Gamer Presents, a unique quality-assured brand in association with the leading games magazine publisher Future Publishing.

The Group also offers, through its wholly owned subsidiary The Producers Limited (also acquired in 2004) a 'cradle to grave' total turnkey service for physical product, from marketing through packaging and warehousing to retail and electronic distribution. In addition, MAD 4 Games, a wireless channel for content delivery to mobile phones was established first quarter 2005.

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