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    Best-Selling Age Franchise Tops 15 Million Mark
    Age of Mythology: The Titans Price Reduced to $19.95 on May 12
    May 7, 2004

    Microsoft Game Studios and Ensemble Studios today announced that the award-winning Age franchise has sold over 15 million copies worldwide. The Age titles, comprised of the Age of Empires and Age of Mythology series, have been consistently in NPD's top ten sales charts throughout the life of the franchise. According to NPD, Age of Mythology has been a top 10 best-selling PC game title for 26 consecutive weeks, 18 months after its initial ship date*. The latest Age release, Age of Mythology: The Titans expansion pack, will reduce its estimated retail price on May 12 to $19.95 (U.S.).

    The Age franchise consists of three series of hugely successful real-time strategy (RTS) games, all developed by Ensemble Studios. Age of Empires, this first series, helped revolutionize the RTS genre with its random maps and strategic gameplay elements. It also spawned an expansion pack, Rise of Rome; as well as two compilations, Age of Empires: Gold Edition and Age of Empires Collector's Edition. Considered by many to be the best RTS title ever, Age of Empires II: The Age of Kings captivated gamers with its compelling economic model, massive army and battle system, unequaled artificial intelligence, intuitive gameplay and extreme attention to detail. The Conquerors expansion pack added new civilizations, new technologies and new campaigns to an already enthralling mixture. Age of Empires II and The Conquerors expansion are also available in a Gold Edition. The third game in the series, Age of Mythology, departed slightly from the Age of Empires series with the addition of mythological units and powers. More information about these titles is available at http://www.microsoft.com/games/, or on the Ensemble Studios site at http://www.ensemblestudios.com/.

    Ensemble Studios is one of the world's premier entertainment software developers. Ensemble Studios is best known for its blockbuster Age of Empires game series. Ensemble's titles are distinguished by the highest-quality art and gameplay dynamics applied in familiar historical settings, and appeal to hard-core gamers and mass audiences. Ensemble Studios is based in Dallas, Texas.

    Microsoft Game Studios is a leading worldwide publisher and developer of games for Windows®, Xbox® video game system and online platforms. Comprising a network of top developers, Microsoft Game Studios is committed to creating innovative and diverse games for Windows (http://www.microsoft.com/games/), including such franchises as Age of Empires®, Flight Simulator and Zoo Tycoon®; Xbox (http://www.xbox.com/), including such franchises as Halo®, Project Gotham Racing® and NFL Fever; and Zone.com (http://www.zone.com/), the official games channel for the MSN® network and home to such hits as Bejeweled and OutSmart™.

    *The NPD Group/NPD Techworld®, Week of 9/28/03 – Week of 3/21/04. Based on total U.S. retail sales.
     
     

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