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Microsoft Unlocks Game Development and Encourages Everyone to "Dream-Build-Play"

Microsoft challenges developers to bring ideas to life on the Xbox 360 and Windows platforms.

SAN FRANCISCO - March 5, 2007 - Providing the opportunity for game developers to create visions in a world where they make the rules, shape the characters and create the evolution of the story, Microsoft Corp. today kicked off the Dream-Build-Play game development contest, offering a USD$10,000 grand prize and the opportunity for a winner's game to be published on Xbox LIVE® Arcade, the premier destination for digitally distributed, high-definition original and classic games. Enabled by its XNA developer tools, the Dream-Build-Play contest was announced at the Game Developers Conference (GDC) 2007 in San Francisco.

Delivering on its commitment to offer the best and most accessible hardware, software and services for game developers on the Microsoft® gaming platforms, Microsoft and its partners also showcased a suite of new products that will help developers of every level turn their dreams into reality. From the hobbyist to professional developers in the largest studios, Microsoft's investments in game development technologies are helping to spark a new creative era while ensuring the best games are being built for Microsoft platforms.

Dream-Build-Play XNA Contest Offers USD$10,000 Grand Prize

Dream-Build-Play is a contest that offers aspiring game developers the opportunity to showcase their innovation and talent to the world. More than 20 winners will be selected to win fantastic prizes with a total value of more than USD$40,000 from Microsoft, Alienware, Advanced Micro Devices (AMD) Inc., Autodesk Inc. and Softimage Co.

The contest will culminate in the extraordinary grand prize that includes an opportunity for the winner to receive an Xbox LIVE Arcade publishing contract, providing a chance to showcase the winner's game on Xbox LIVE Arcade. Dream-Build-Play is open to any user of XNA Game Studio Express, including the GarageGames Torque X platform. No purchase is necessary to compete. The contest ends July 2, 2007, and winners will be announced Aug. 13 at Microsoft Gamefest 2007 in Seattle. Additional contest details, including detailed eligibility and entry requirements, are available at

Great Games by Great Storytellers Using Great Tools

Also at GDC this week, Microsoft will spotlight the ways that some of the most innovative game creators in the industry are bringing their visions to life on Microsoft gaming platforms. On Tuesday, March 6, Microsoft Game Studios will present "The Evolution of RPG Development," a panel discussion hosted by journalist Geoff Keighley that will feature Hironobu Sakaguchi of Mistwalker, Peter Molyneux of Lionhead Studios and Ray Muzyka of BioWare Corp., the creators of the most highly anticipated role-playing games of the next generation.

In addition, to celebrate the launch of the Dream-Build-Play contest, Microsoft will showcase a new era of game creators through the XNA Game Studio Express Challenge. GDC attendees will have a chance to see some of the brightest beacons in game development from around the world gathering at the XNA lobby bar at the Moscone Center in San Francisco to create four games in four days using XNA Game Studio Express tools.

The power of the XNA tools is demonstrated with today's announcement of "Schizoid" (Torpex Games LLC), an upcoming game that will be the first Xbox LIVE Arcade title built using XNA Game Studio Express. "Schizoid" is a co-op action game in which teamwork matters like never before, as gamers and their friend or AI ally protect each other from barrages of glowing enemies. The title is scheduled to launch on Xbox LIVE Arcade before the end of 2007.

New XNA Tools for Game Developers of All Levels

In December 2006, Microsoft launched XNA Game Studio Express, a set of free software tools for use on Windows® that enables anyone to build, play and share their amazing game creations. Microsoft simultaneously launched the XNA Creators Club, enabling the development and playing of XNA Game Studio Express games on the Xbox 360 system as well. Microsoft also announced new software tools that will work with XNA Game Studio Express to make game development for Windows and Xbox 360 even easier.

GarageGames Torque X Engine. Members of the XNA Creators Club will receive a license to the Torque X Engine, including the Torque Game Builder toolset for Torque X, as a free membership benefit. SOFTIMAGE|XSI. Softimage is developing new 3-D solutions based on its XSI 3-D software for game creators and exclusive content for members of the XNA Creators Club to support the XNA platform scheduled for release later this year. Allegorithmic ProFX. In addition to the free MapZone 2-D texture editor, Allegorithmic is developing an enhanced version exclusively for XNA Creators Club members that will offer support for procedural textures, additional texture libraries and custom content processors for use with the XNA Framework Content Pipeline. The enhanced version of MapZone will be made available to active members of the XNA Creators Club at no additional cost and will be available later this year.

The XNA Creators Club is available on Xbox LIVE Marketplace for $49/49 for a four-month subscription or $99/99 for an annual subscription.

About Xbox 360

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 network and unique digital entertainment experiences that revolve around gamers. Xbox 360 has a catalog of more than 160 high-definition games and is available in 37 countries. More information can be found online at

About Microsoft

Founded in 1975, Microsoft (Nasdaq "MSFT") is the worldwide leader in software, services and solutions that help people and businesses realize their full potential.

Microsoft, Xbox LIVE, XNA, Windows, Xbox 360 and Xbox are either registered trademarks or trademarks of Microsoft Corp. in the United States and/or other countries.

The names of actual companies and products mentioned herein may be the trademarks of their respective owners.

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