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Konami Signs Deal With Marvel, Set to Release 2 New Sports Games

Konami Digital Ent. Inc. announced a multi-year agreement with Marvel Enterprises Inc. and Upper Deck Ent. that gives Konami exclusive worldwide interactive rights to develop games for current and next-generation videogame systems based on Upper Decks best-selling Marvel Trading Card Game. This is the latest addition to Konamis collection of interactive trading card based properties, which also includes the tremendously successful YU-GI-OH! series.

This announcement comes on the heels of Konamis announcement that it is set to release two new sports titles wrestling game RUMBLE ROSES XX and soccer game WORLD SOCCER WINNING ELEVEN 9. The Marvel Trading Card Game is a trading card game (TCG), which uses the highly popular Vs. System game engine designed to support traditional one-on-one dueling competitions with popular Marvel comicbook characters. In addition to the rights for developing this property into a videogame for both online and offline formats, Konami also secured the license to incorporate Marvel character content into the game including content based on The Incredible Hulk, Spider-Man, the X-Men, the Avengers and the Fantastic Four.

The Marvel characters are among the most recognizable icons in popular culture, with a significant presence across all media, said Kazumi Kitaue, chairman/ceo of Konami Digital Ent. Inc. When combined with Konamis experience in developing successful video games based on trading card properties, this will give consumers a powerful new way to interact with some of their favorite Marvel characters, especially as the online community expands.

"The Vs. System utilizes the strengths of the Marvel characters and universe in a unique and compelling way," said Jerry Bennington, vp of entertainment at Upper Deck. "Upper Deck Ent. is excited to be working with industry giants such as Konami and Marvel Enterprises on this amazing project."

Given the vast popularity of the Marvel Vs. card game, we are very excited to be working with both Upper Deck and Konami in bringing Marvel Vs. to the world of interactive gaming, said Ames Kirshen, vp, interactive at Marvel Enterprises. Since its release in 2003, the Marvel Trading Card Game has been one of the top-selling TCGs in the market, and has been honored with such awards as INQUEST GAMER MAGAZINEs 2005 Fan Award, and GAMAs 2005 Gamers Choice Award. As for RUMBLE ROSES XX, the title will be release in North America for the Xbox 360. The follow-up to last years smash hit female wrestling videogame, RUMBLE ROSES XX will feature a full lineup of incredible looking wrestlers along with all-new moves, gameplay modes, tag team action and online play.

Set to be the best-looking game for the new console, RUMBLE ROSES XX features more than 20 playable characters, including all the popular ladies from the original game such as Reiko and Dixie. Additionally, just like in the original, each characters alternate persona will be included, allowing for players to play the hero, or the heel. Modeled in revealing outfits, the look of the wrestlers in RUMBLE ROSES XX will defy the imagination as the polygon count for each of these models has increased substantially from the original. Each wrestler will also have a variety of costume changes, new moves, different crowd reactions and attitudes depending on their persona.

New gameplay modes bolstering a number of solo modes where players can pummel their way through the games many characters and unlock additional foes turn up the heat on the action. Foremost is the new Tag Team option, which allows two women to team up to fight two other women. The Tag Team mode allows for special team combo moves, mistaken attacks and the drama of team breakups. A Battle Royal mode and an Elimination Match mode also increase the games depth and replay value. Additionally, RUMBLE ROSES XX will include online play so competition from around the country can team up with one another or go toe-to-toe. No matter which mode, the number of moves at the players disposal has been expanded greatly, providing a more realistic wrestling experience.

RUMBLE ROSES XX has not yet been rated by the ESRB.

WORLD SOCCER WINNING ELEVEN 9 will be released in North America for the PlayStation 2, PSP and PC CD-ROM. Slated for a Winter 2006 release, the new edition combines the attention to detail that has been the series hallmark along with new formations, Master League enhancements and for the first time ever online play. WINNING ELEVEN 9 will feature full team rosters and official kits for all clubs playing in the Italian Serie A, Spanish La Liga and Dutch Eredivisie leagues, and also some of the worlds biggest clubs from famous European leagues. New additions include English champions Chelsea and runners-up Arsenal, while the Old Firm Scottish clubs of Rangers and Celtic will also be included. Norwegian Champions Rosenburg will also be joined by Portuguese giants FC Porto, Turkeys Galatasaray SK, Denmarks FC Kopenhagen, Ukraines Dynamo Kiev, and Djurgarden from Sweden. Players will also be able to compete on a more global level with the games new Online Mode. With this option, players from around the country can go head-to-head, using Master League teams if they choose. Online players can even qualify and play in tournaments they put together themselves. The Master League mode has been tweaked, primarily when it comes to player conditioning. A new training system adds more depth while player development has more variation than ever before, giving virtual managers more ways to build their team for success.

A series of all-new features include additional formations to be employed on the pitch such as Wing Back and Second Striker. Through the use of all-new motion capture, WINNING ELEVEN 9 will also boast new player motions that will imitate the moves and look of the players down to the smallest detail. Additionally, those who have mastered the previous versions harsh weather including rain and scorching heat, will have an all-new obstacle from Mother Nature to overcome: snow. In the freezing cold, players can actually see their breath as they fight conditions down the frozen field. Rounding out the new features is the Memorial Match, which allows gamers to save results from non-AI VS. matches. Cumulative match records and winning points can be logged for up to 20 people. WINNING ELEVEN 9 has not yet been rated by the ESRB.

Konami Corp. is a leading developer, publisher and manufacturer of electronic entertainment properties, specializing in the home videogame market. Konami Corp. is a publicly traded company based in Tokyo, Japan with subsidiary offices, Konami Digital Ent. Inc. in the U.S. and Konami of Europe in Frankfurt, Germany. Konami Corp., the parent company of Konami Digital Ent. Inc. is traded in the U.S. on the New York Stock Exchange. The latest information about Konami can be found on the Web at

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