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Final Fantasy XI Online Beta available exclusively through Official Xbox 360 Magazine

Deal sees global trial of Square Enix epic distributed through Future’s international Xbox network

19/12/05 -Square Enix Ltd. and Future, the international special-interest media company are delighted to announce a deal that sees the next issue of Xbox 360: The Official Xbox Magazine exclusively covermounting the FINAL FANTASY® XI Beta version for Xbox 360TM

As the biggest covermount in the five-year history of Xbox magazines, the beta disc will only be available with Future's Xbox 360: The Official Xbox Magazine in the USA, UK, France, Italy and Germany, joining the title's existing monthly coverdisc.

The exclusive disc is completely free for the duration of the beta test and will give fans of the Final Fantasy series and readers of Xbox 360: The Official Xbox Magazine an exciting opportunity to be the first to sample the next-generation version of Final Fantasy XI. Square Enix will be opening their beta servers for a limited-time, enabling gamers to help them fine-tune the Xbox 360 version, which includes support for high-definition screens, before the retail version goes on sale.

Players will undertake multiple adventures in the world of Vana'diel - a gaming universe packed with the award-winning visual content, innovative gameplay and deep storylines which have made the Final Fantasy series million sellers across the globe. All gamers need to experience the beta version of Final Fantasy XI is an Xbox 360 with Hard Drive and broadband connection.

"The Final Fantasy XI development team are delighted to welcome Xbox 360 adventurers to Vana'diel," said Hiromichi Tanaka, Producer of Final Fantasy XI. "With this powerful system, these new members of the Final Fantasy XI community have a fantastic journey ahead. The beta tests will give players a taste of the excitement that is Final Fantasy XI."

James Ashton-Tyler Group Publisher for Xbox 360: The Official Magazine added:

"I'm delighted that Square Enix chose Future as their partner for this pioneering international project. The readers of Xbox 360: The Official Xbox Magazine readers are amongst the most passionate and hardcore gamers on the planet and are therefore ideal to test a major game of this magnitude before release. It's fantastic that our magazines, on sale in multiple markets, can give readers the chance to play a truly immersive Xbox 360 game months before anyone else and we look forward to joining our gamers on this exciting adventure."

Issue 4 of Xbox 360: The Official Xbox Magazine hits UK news stands on Thursday, 5 January 2006 and is packed with the latest reviews, previews and playable demos, as well a second disc, featuring the FULL Xbox 360 Beta version of FINAL FANTASY® XI with a coverprice of £5.99.



FINAL FANTASY XI is a massively multi-player online role-playing game (MMORPG) with over 1.5 million characters to date. Players undertake multiple adventures through Vana'diel®, in a gaming universe that contains same the award-winning visual content, innovative gameplay and deep storyline that the FINAL FANTASY series is known for. The Rise of the Zilart® and Chains of PromathiaTM expansion packs expand the storyline and open up a variety of higher-level skills and abilities. The upcoming third expansion, Treasures of Aht UrhganTM will include the exciting introduction of the long-awaited job class, Blue Mage.

With the release of Xbox 360 version, Square Enix will be expanding its cross-platform strategy, making FINAL FANTASY XI available to a much wider audience across the world. The powerful next-generation capabilities of Xbox 360 will provide a much more dynamic and visually impressive gateway to Vana'diel.


CHAINS OF PROMATHIA, FINAL FANTASY, RISE OF THE ZILART, SQUARE ENIX, TREASURES OF AHT URHGAN and VANA'DIEL are trademarks or registered trademarks of Square Enix Co., Ltd. in Japan and/or other countries. Xbox and Xbox 360 are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corporation in the United States and/or other countries.

About Square Enix

Headquartered in Tokyo, Square Enix Co., Ltd. (Square Enix) develops, publishes and distributes entertainment contents including interactive entertainment software and publications in Japan, North America, Europe and Asia. Square Enix brings two of Japan's best-selling franchises - FINAL FANTASY®, which has sold over 60 million units worldwide and DRAGON QUEST which has sold over 40 million units worldwide - under one roof. Square Enix is one of the most influential providers of digital entertainment content in the world and continues to push the boundaries of creativity and innovation. More information on Square Enix can be found on the Internet at .

About Square Enix Ltd.

Located in London, Square Enix Ltd. handles operations in Europe and other PAL territories including sales, marketing and publishing of Square Enix titles. More information on Square Enix Ltd. can be found on the Internet at .

About Future

Future plc was founded in the UK in 1985. Today, it publishes over 150 special-interest consumer magazines worldwide with strong portfolios in the computing, games, music, automotive, sports, crafts and leisure sectors. It is the fifth largest magazine publisher in the UK. Future employs 1,450 people in offices in the UK, US, France and Italy. Over 100 international editions of Future's magazines are also published under licence in 30 other countries across the world. The company is listed on the London Stock Exchange (symbol FUTR).

About Xbox and Xbox 360

Microsoft revolutionized the gaming industry with the November 2001 launch of Xbox (, its first-generation video games and entertainment system, now sold in 26 countries around the world. This Christmas season Microsoft debuts its next-generation system, Xbox 360, in Europe, Japan and North America, to be followed by availability in Australia, Colombia, Hong Kong, Korea, Mexico, New Zealand, Singapore and Taiwan in 2006. Xbox 360 is the most powerful video game and entertainment system, delivering the best games, the next generation of the premier Xbox Live online gaming service, and unique digital entertainment experiences that revolve around you.

For more information:

Will Guyatt, Media Relations Manager, 07788 576505

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