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PlayStation®2 online gaming is about to hit NZ

For Immediate Release 15 March 2004


PlayStation®2 online gaming is about to hit New Zealand with PlayStation Net™!


PlayStation®2 has the biggest online console gaming community in the world and New Zealand is about to join it. Now, not only will you be able to play your friend in your living room on your PlayStation 2, soon you will be able to play your friends from across the road, across the country and across the Tasman.

Following successful beta trials over summer, Sony Computer Entertainment New Zealand (SCE NZ) is pleased to announce the launch of PlayStation 2 online gaming - PlayStation Net™ - in New Zealand. This exciting entertainment phenomenon will be released to the NZ gaming public on 2 April 2004, with the launch of the PlayStation Net Starter Pack.

The Starter Pack is the gateway to PlayStation Net, and will come bundled with a Network Adaptor (Ethernet) and a copy of the arcade combat game Hardware™ Online Arena. The pack will retail at $79.95 (RRP).

Also launching on April 2nd is SOCOM II U.S Navy SEALS™, the most popular online console game in the world. This game has set the standard for online console game-play and is the most thoroughly designed online experience to date.

SOCOM II: U.S. Navy SEALS joins the current selection of over 20 PlayStation 2 titles that gamers will be able to play online at the time of launch. These include Destruction Derby Arenas™, Medal of Honor™: Rising Sun, Need for Speed™: Underground and Tony Hawk’s Underground.

Many titles can be used with a USB headset (sold with SOCOM, SOCOM II and separately) to enhance the online experience even further.

With a stellar lineup of online-enabled PlayStation 2 games releasing throughout the year, including the highly anticipated Gran Turismo 4 and Syphon Filter: The Omega Strain, PlayStation Net offers a great new entertainment option for New Zealand gamers.

The cost of the service will make it highly attractive to gamers – SOCOM: U.S. NAVY SEALS, SOCOM II: U.S. NAVY SEALS, Hardware Online Arena, Destruction Derby Arenas, and a host of other titles are all free to play.

SCE NZ is further enhancing the experience by hosting local servers in Australia for latency-critical games, ensuring a great fast game-play experience for New Zealand players. PlayStation 2 is the only online console gaming platform to do this.

SCE NZ is partnering with major New Zealand ISPs paradise.net, Xtra, ihug and Orcon Internet for the launch - each is excited about this new online arena.

Michael White, Web Marketing Manager, TelstraClear comments, “We are extremely excited about this new online initiative; with a brand as powerful as PlayStation behind this we are looking forward to seeing a shift in how people look at broadband, bringing it out of the office and into the lounge. We have worked very closely with SCE NZ to make sure that our customers will experience the best PlayStation Net experience possible.”

Margaret Hawker, Online Marketing Manager of SCE NZ also comments, “As market leaders, with over 200,000 PlayStation 2 consoles throughout New Zealand we expect online gaming to be extremely popular with our core market of New Zealand gamers.”

“This new online initiative is set to be a milestone in redefining home entertainment as we know it”.

PlayStation 2 is New Zealand’s highest selling next generation computer entertainment system. With 200,000 consoles shipped in New Zealand, by December 2003, and over 70 million consoles worldwide, this is one of the most successful computer entertainment products in history. With both CD and DVD capabilities, PlayStation 2 offers consumers a diverse range of computer entertainment solutions and is supported with over 550 high quality software titles.
What’s Required to Take Your PlayStation 2 Online?
First you need an established broadband connection with a minimum speed of 256/128kbps and the Network Adaptor (Ethernet) for PlayStation®2. This device enables PlayStation 2 owners to access network multiplayer games through any broadband ISP. It plugs into a dedicated bay at the back of the PlayStation 2 designed specifically for this purpose, then links via an Ethernet cable (supplied) to a broadband connection.
The PlayStation Net Starter Pack will go on sale on as of 2nd April, costing $79.95 (RRP) and will be bundled with the game Hardware Online Arena.
PlayStation Net Starter Pack includes:
 Network Adaptor (Ethernet)
 Ethernet Cable
 Network Access Disc
 Hardware Online Arena (full copy game)
For more information go to: http://www.nz.playstation.com/network_gaming
Low res images attached.

~ Ends ~
About Sony Computer Entertainment Europe

Sony Computer Entertainment Europe, based in London, is responsible for the distribution, marketing and sales of PS one and PlayStation 2 hardware and software in 102 territories across Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Oceania. By the end of December 2003, over 39 million PlayStation and P one units had been shipped across these PAL territories and over 99 million worldwide. Between its European debut on 24 November 2000 and 13 January 2004, over 24.5 million PlayStation 2 units have been shipped across the PAL territories, over 70 million world-wide, making it one of the most successful computer entertainment products in history.

PlayStation and the PlayStation logo, PS one and PS2 are trademarks or registered trademarks of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

About Sony Computer Entertainment New Zealand

SCE New Zealand, based in Auckland, is responsible for the distribution, marketing and sales of PlayStation®, PS one® and PlayStation®2 software and hardware in New Zealand. Over 200,000 consoles have been shipped in New Zealand, by December 2003. With both CD and DVD capabilities, PlayStation®2 offers consumers a diverse range of computer entertainment solutions and is supported with over 550 high quality software titles.

PlayStation and the PlayStation logo, PS one, PS2 and PSP are trademarks or registered trademarks of Sony Computer Entertainment Inc. All other trademarks are the property of their respective owners.

More information about PlayStation products can be found at and http://nz.playstation.com and http://www.scee.com

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