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Atom Ent. Launches NewsGames Channel

Atom Ent. has opened the first NewsGames channel (www.addictinggames.com/newsgames.html) at the fast-growing online games destination, AddictingGames, and will develop dozens of new titles each year plus promote the best user-generated games that mock the most popular headlines and cultural topics of the day.

Games are increasingly becoming another form of expression and communication in our daily lives, said Mika Salmi, ceo of Atom Ent., recently acquired by Viacom. Games that make us laugh at what we see in the newspaper, in the news or online, are among the most explosively popular online games. We created the NewsGames channel on AddictingGames to create a space for consumers to find an escape that lets them laugh at the events in the news or pop culture.

Atom Ent. is encouraging gamers to submit their own user-generated games that parody the headlines and happenings of the day. Most of the content at the NewsGames channel will be harvested from users and online gamers. Nowadays, users may create games just about as quickly and easily as they can shoot, edit and publish video.

Atom Ent. also has a new business relationship with game developer Persuasive Games, a leader in developing, producing and distributing electronic games for persuasion and instruction. Persuasive will create titles around newsworthy themes to be available exclusively at AddictingGames.com and Shockwave.com.

The videogame is a great medium for showing how things work in the world or how they dont work, about whats wrong with them, said Ian Bogost Ph.D, founding partner of Persuasive Games. The news is constantly changing, and games give us a new way to understand current events.

Initial titles at NewsGames will include the new AIRPORT SECURITY game (www.addictinggames.com/airportsecurity.html) that has players take on the role of an airport security guard and see if they can keep track of rapidly changing baggage prohibitions. Sparked by the terror scare in London, this game is typical of how online content can create an escape or at least a laugh around serious issues in the news.

Other titles in the NewsGame channel have already proven to be hits. The ZIDANE HEADBUTT game was an international sensation, generating almost four million games plays in just a few weeks online. CHENEYS FURY, a game that mocked the vice presidents errant shotgun blast has seen 1.4 million gameplays and will also be available here. BUSH BACKRUB, a game that lampooned the presidents awkward massaging of a European head of state has seen more than 1 million gameplays and is available at the new destination.

The popularity of these games has driven tremendous growth for AddictingGames.com. According to MediaMetrix, traffic at AddictingGames.com doubled from 4.5 million unique visitors to 9 million since Atom purchased the site in October 2005.

The AddictingGames website (www.addictinggames.com) offers free online games, including user generated and Flash games, serving a large, growing audience of young online game consumers. AddictingGames has a library of more than 1,600 free online games, spanning a variety of genres, including sports games, action games, adventure games, strategy and RPG games, puzzle and board games, shooting games and, now, NewsGames.

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