FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
5th May 2005, Woking UK - THQ Inc. (NASDAQ: THQI), a leading publisher of video and wireless, today announced it has signed a major agreement with Vodafone, one of the world's largest mobile network operators.
This innovative agreement is set to include Vodafone live! in the video-game Juiced for PlayStation®2 computer entertainment system, the Xbox® videogame console from Microsoft and PC systems. This is the first time that a mobile operator brand is fully integrated into a mass market game allowing players to both use mobile phones as part of the game action as well as download the game via their mobiles. Through this integration, thousands of gamers around the world will potentially see will the Vodafone live! logo within the game.
Juiced is the only racing simulation that totally immerses players in the lifestyle and culture of the real street car-modification scene. Players aim is to build up your own crew of 'driving gods' and dominate the established street racing scene of Angel City. By showing off your modding and driving skills, you'll gain 'Respect' from the rival crew chiefs, and will soon be invited to their race events, challenge them to race 'for pinks' via video calling and bet against them for cash. As your notoriety grows, new drivers will call you up to ask to join your crew, opening up the never before seen 'crew races' where your skills at managing your drivers while you race are key to beating your rival crews.
The main information channel within the game for players to get their news and race challenges is through the use of mobile phones. Six handsets have been positioned within the "modding" section of the game. When the user "mods" his car with engine upgrades, new stereo, new paint job they can also select which phone to use to communicate with crews between races.
- Users can select from 6 Vodafone handsets
- Prominent Vodafone live! Logos displayed throughout the game
- Users will see the live! Logo all the time
- Choose a specific Vodafone handset so that this is the phone that will be displayed when other crew members are calling you in the game
Additionally, under the terms of the agreement, THQ Wireless' version of Juiced will be available for download by Vodafone's consumers in sixteen countries worldwide. Gameplay will be similar to the console games - where gamers can experience a thrilling simulation of street racing on their mobile phone, as well as being able to modify cars, adorn and spraypaint them, and race for the respect of fellow Juicers.
Juiced will receive unprecedented marketing support across Europe, with Vodafone, THQ and THQ Wireless combining efforts. In particular, THQ's heavy-weight marketing campaign for Juiced includes:
- Heavyweight TV, radio, print and outdoor advertising
- Editorial and advertorial promotion with Fast Car magazine for 7 issues where the editorial team modify a Mazda RX7 into the ultimate street car, culminating in readers having the chance to win the Juiced car
- Sponsorship of MTV's Pimp My Ride including the first ever UK shows fronted by Tim Westwood
- MMS with retailer and student promotions
Also, the front cover of the UK's Mobile Gamer magazine is heavily Juiced branded, with 500,000 magazine copies being inserted into the UK's Official Xbox, Official PlayStation 2 and Games Master magazines.
Adam Comiskey, General Manager, THQ Wireless said: "This is a significant agreement for THQ Wireless and a strong endorsement of the quality of THQ console and wireless game alike."
Tim Harrison, Head of Games for Vodafone Group, said "Juiced is the first Gold game released under Vodafone's new Global Games Marketing and Distribution Program announced last month. The title represents an unrivalled opportunity to reach out to our customers, and to maximise the brand and marketing synergies across the title's release in Europe."
Juiced is scheduled for launch on PlayStation 2 and Xbox consoles as well as exclusively on Vodafone live! from the end of May 2005. For more information please go to http://www.juiced-racing.com
About THQ Wireless
THQ Wireless Inc., a subsidiary of THQ Inc. (NASDAQ: THQI), is a global leader in mobile entertainment, offering a wide range of wireless products, including games, personalization products, information services and messaging based on top licenses such as the WWETM, Star Wars, popular Nickelodeon properties and professional sports leagues including the NFL, NBA, NHL, MLB and the NHRA. In addition to wireless entertainment products, THQ Wireless' controlling interest in MINICK gives the company access to one of the largest premium messaging networks in the world in order to offer a broad range of services from content distribution to mobile marketing campaigns and place the company at the forefront of this rapidly growing messaging market. Headquartered in Los Angeles County, California, THQ Wireless has offices worldwide, in addition to distribution agreements through wireless carriers across the globe. Further information can be found at www.thqwireless.com.
THQ Inc. (NASDAQ: THQI) is a leading worldwide developer and publisher of interactive entertainment software. The company develops its products for all popular game systems, personal computers and wireless devices. Headquartered in Los Angeles County, California, THQ sells product through its global network of offices located in the United States, United Kingdom, France, Germany, Spain, Korea and Australia. More information about THQ and its products may be found at www.thq.com and www.thqwireless.com. THQ, THQ Wireless and their respective logos are trademarks and/or registered trademarks of THQ Inc.
Vodafone is the world's largest mobile community, with equity interests in 26 countries and Partner Networks in a further 14 countries, serving over 150 million proportionate customers worldwide.
About Juice Games
Juice Games is a development studio based in Warrington, comprising a talented group of individuals headed up by industry veteran Colin Bell. The Juice team has an unprecedented track record in creating highly entertaining and challenging games, and is renowned within the UK development community. With a history that spans games like TFX, EF2000, eRacer, Total Air War, Typhoon and the critically acclaimed but unreleased Lamborghini, Juice Games has an enviable back catalogue. Utilizing their own leading-edge technology, Juice Games has developed the high profile and well received Juiced street racing simulation over the last 18 months for Xbox®, PlayStation®2 and PC. The company is also enjoying success with a number of titles for ID TV and mobile platforms. Juice Games consists of over 30 development staff with industry experience that rivals the world's most established and successful development studios.
This press release may contain "forward-looking statements" within the meaning of the Private Securities Litigation Reform Act of 1995. These forwardlooking statements are based on current expectations, estimates and projections about the business of THQ Inc. and its subsidiaries (collectively referred to as "THQ"), and are based upon management's beliefs and certain assumptions made by management. Such forward-looking statements, including statements related to Juiced and THQ's agreement with Vodafone, are subject to risks and uncertainties that could cause actual results to differ materially from those expressed or implied by such forward looking statements, including, but not limited to economic, competitive and technological factors affecting the operations, markets, products, and pricing of THQ. Unless otherwise required by law, THQ disclaims any obligation to update its view on any such risks or uncertainties or to revise or publicly release the results of any revision to these forward-looking statements. Readers should carefully review the risk factors and the information that could materially affect THQ's financial results, described in other documents that THQ files from time to time with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its and Quarterly Reports on Form 10-Q and Annual Report on Form 10-K for the fiscal period ended March 31, 2004, and particularly the discussion of risk factors that may affect results of operations set forth therein.Readers are cautioned not to place undue reliance on these forward-looking statements, which speak only as of the date of this press release.
THQ Wireless - Public Relations
+ 44 77 47 488 198
Vodafone Group Plc
+ 44 7717 663366