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Microsoft unveils new TV tie-in game from Rare

Microsoft has teamed up with development studio Rare and TV company 4Kids Entertainment to produce a new Xbox 360 game based on the forthcoming animated series, Viva Piñata.

Microsoft has teamed up with development studio Rare and TV company 4Kids Entertainment to produce a new Xbox 360 game based on the forthcoming animated series, Viva Piñata.

The game is described as a "customisable, social and spontaneous" title that is designed for gamers of all ages and skill levels. Players are tasked with creating and maintaining their own ecosystem, which grows in real time.

To begin with, players have only a few basic tools, but eventually they can create a habitat for more than 60 types of wild piñata and watch them evolve. They will also be able to play, trade and interact with other gamers via Xbox Live. Viva Piñata is being developed by Rare, the studio behind Xbox 360 titles Perfect Dark Zero and Kameo.

The Viva Piñata TV show will be broadcast on Saturday mornings in the US on Fox as part of the channel's 4Kids strand. 4Kids Entertainment already owns various hit children's brands such as Yu-Gi-Oh!, Cabbage Patch Kids and Pokîmon.

"The potent combination of Microsoft Game Studios and 4Kids will ensure that the Viva Piñata world, including the videogame, television series and merchandising program, attracts a worldwide audience," said 4Kids CEO Alfred R. Kahn.

Microsoft's Peter Moore added: "With Viva Piñata, we are introducing a revolutionary brand that will entertain, inspire and excite children, families and creative minds around the globe.â

"With Rare and 4Kids Entertainment we will best showcase the vibrant world of Viva Piñata, enabling a mass audience to have an immersive experience via the animated television series, the Xbox 360 title and related merchandise.â

The Viva Piñata TV show will begin broadcasting in the US this autumn, with the game down for a global release in time for Christmas. An additional licensing programme will see a range of merchandising launched in 2007.

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Ellie Gibson

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Ellie spent nearly a decade working at Eurogamer, specialising in hard-hitting executive interviews and nob jokes. These days she does a comedy show and podcast. She pops back now and again to write the odd article and steal our biscuits.

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