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Microsoft Xbox Set For Japanese Debut

Microsoft Corp.s future-generation game console Xbox will go on sale at retail outlets throughout Japan on February 22, 2002 at a price of 34,800 yen (US$265). 50,000 Xbox Special Edition consoles designed exclusively for the Japanese market will also be available. The special console will be greenish-black with a translucent textured casing. The jewel portion of the box will have a silver logo with black lettering. A silver-plated key chain with an engraved serial number and Bill Gates signature will be included with the console as well. The Xbox Special Edition will be available for an estimated retail price of 39,800 yen (US$303). Preorders of Xbox Special Edition and the standard Xbox console can be made through Japanese Xbox retail stores beginning February 2. Twelve game titles will be available to Xbox customers at the time of the launch, including games from Sega, Konami and Microsoft. After the initial launch, a quick succession of games will be available, with an expected 22 titles in Japanese stores by the end of March. On average, Xbox games will be priced between 6,800 yen and 9,800 yen (US$52 and US$75).