CATAPULT ENTERTAINMENT LAUNCHES XBAND PC BETA
On-line gaming pioneer utilizes new RAPIDsm technology to launch first phase of national Internet-based Multi-player Network
CUPERTINO, CA--February 27, 1996--Catapult Entertainment today announced the launch of beta service for XBAND for the PC which will provide gamers accessing the Internet through different service providers with the fastest multi-player PC gaming experience available.
"In creating a road map of Internet latency domains*, we can effectively navigate areas that hinder responsive performance." said Adam Grosser, president and CEO of Catapult Entertainment. "We are able to provide Reduced-latency And Predictable Internet Delivery, which we call RAPID, because it delivers unparalleled gaming to a wide audience of Internet users."
Catapult's RAPID system is implemented through a unique and proprietary combination of a private IP service with an ATM backbone, high speed connections between Internet service providers and strategically-placed game servers. RAPID allows Catapult to remove game traffic bottlenecks from the Internet quickly and thus provide customers with an unrequited urge for "twitch" gaming the ability to play a variety of latency sensitive games including Ultimate DOOM, DOOM II, Hardball 5, Hexen, Locus, MechWarrior 2 and Super Street Fighter II.
Catapult, creator and operator of the popular on-line XBAND Network for Sega Genesis and Super Nintendo which delivers national low latency gaming today, will use this expertise in building and operating a multi-player on-line service to facilitate uninterrupted operation of the XBAND PC Network from the start. The service will bring Catapult's state-of-the-art interface to the Internet including one-button matching, statistics/rankings, electronic newspapers, chat/matching rooms, paging, custom player pictures with animation and sound.
Extensive server capabilities and a seasoned server team will allow for the seamless integration of complicated, but critical functionality, including customer service (custom IVR and tracing system), billing, database/system monitoring, automatic stats, pager system, fraud detection/prevention, wide area links, national tournaments and the most user friendly multi-player matching system.
With over 1,000,000 games played per month, Catapult has a proven track record in providing both a technological and marketing showcase for games. Developers will benefit from private web access, technical support and use of XBAND test servers and compatibility lab. Developers need only to support the XBAND API and use the XBAND Software developer's kit including DirectPlay service provider to create compatible games.
To register as a beta tester, interested parties should contact Catapult's Web site -- www.xband.com. CD beta versions of the Windows 95 software-only solution will be available in March. Client software will be available through a variety of distribution channels including game and OEM bundles as well as web site downloads. XBAND for the PC will support any native Windows 95, Win95 DOS-Box games with modem support. Compatible games will sport the "Play It On XBAND" logo on, or in, the game boxes.
Catapult Entertainment, Inc. was formed to create premier products and services to support networked multi-player real time interactive entertainment for all platforms. XBAND for the PC, a collaboration between Intel Corporation and Catapult, brings low latency gaming to the Internet. The XBAND Video Game Network, in operation since November 1994, is the only on-line gaming service for the Sega Genesis and Super Nintendo platforms. Equity partners include Viacom Corp, Blockbuster Entertainment Corp. and Nissho Iwai, whose wholly owned subsidiary, Catapult Entertainment Japan, will launch XBAND for the Super Famicom in Japan in March 1996. Catapult is a private company based in Cupertino, California.
[*To access the Internet latency domains map, visit our Web Site at www.xband.com/XBAND/exposure/releases/latencymap.html]
# # #