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Yu-Gi-Oh! Goes Online

Company: Konami
Product: Yu-Gi-Oh! Official Card Game

Konami has announced that it will launch an online version of the Yu-Gi-Oh! Official Card Game, Konami?s global strategic product. The new online service is scheduled to start in a beta test phase on December 18th. Full-scale service will be launched in Japan, U.S., and Europe in Spring 2005. Konami Group?s companies will collaborate on network infrastructure, services and operations, as well as content development, to further enhance the internationally popular Yu-Gi-Oh!.

In the Yu-Gi-Oh! Official Card Game, two players face off in an all-out battle, armed with a deck of cards consisting of Monster Cards, Spell Cards, and Trap Cards. A player wins when he or she reduces his or her opponent?s Life Points to zero. Yu-Gi-Oh! Online will authentically recreate the Yu-Gi-Oh! duel field on the Internet. It will not only offer online matches beyond international borders, but online chatting and trading.

In Japan, Konami will distribute the Yu-Gi-Oh! Online CD-ROM bundled with the December 18th issue of the Shueisha magazine, ?V Jump.? The CD-ROM lets users install the Yu-Gi-Oh! Online application on their PCs, and access the official site for registration to get an ID and password. The service will be provided free of charge during the beta test through Spring 2005. The CD-ROM will be distributed similarly in the U.S. through ?Shonen Jump,? German magazine, ?Banzai? (both to be released in January 2005), and Swedish ?Shonen Jump? (to be released in February 2005) for release in the Japanese, U.S., and European markets.

Yu-Gi-Oh! is based on the comic series by Kazuki Takahashi, which was first published in Weekly Shonen Jump in 1996. The series quickly achieved sales of 23 million copies and more than 33 million copies including related books. Konami has sold video games and Official Card Games based on the comic series Yu-Gi-Oh!, also authored by Kazuki Takahashi, since 1998. It made its way into the U.S. and European markets in 2002. The deep strategy, along with the game?s content, which overcomes language barriers, has gained the support of children worldwide. Yu-Gi-Oh! is one of the strongest brands in children?s entertainment.

-Red Dawg, GameVortex Communications
AKA Alex Redmann

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