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Sony Online Expands Operations With SOE-Seattle

(February 03, 2005)

Sony Online Entertainment Inc. (SOE), a worldwide leader in massively multiplayer online (MMO) gaming, announced today that it has expanded operations with the formation of a development studio in Seattle, Washington. SOE-Seattle will further increase Sony Online Entertainment's global market share and will strengthen the overall planning and production of premium games.

Matt Wilson will serve as Executive Producer of SOE-Seattle.  Wilson had been with Microsoft for over 10 years, leaving to form FireAnt, Inc. with John Smith, Alex Pfaffe, Craig Link and Ed Fries in order to create cutting-edge massively multiplayer online games.  All the members of FireAnt will be joining the new studio full-time, with the exception of Ed Fries, who will serve in an advisory role for SOE-Seattle game design and studio management. The SOE-Seattle team has a diverse history of game development, having worked on titles such as Dungeon Siege, Ultima Online, Wing Commander, Asheron's Call, and many others.

    "As our business grows, so does the need for more diverse titles," said Russell Shanks, chief operations officer, Sony Online Entertainment.  "With the core team's expertise in the video game industry and their passion for making games, we are confident that this new studio will allow us to maintain and expand SOE's position as one of the world-wide leaders in online gaming."


    About Sony Online Entertainment

    Sony Online Entertainment Inc. (SOE), a subsidiary of Sony Pictures Digital Inc., is a recognized worldwide leader in massively multiplayer online games, with a subscriber base of over 800,000 active accounts around the globe.  SOE creates, develops and provides compelling entertainment for the personal computer, online, game console and wireless markets.  Known for its blockbuster franchises, EverQuest(R), EverQuest(R) II and PlanetSide(R), as well as for developing Star Wars Galaxies(TM): An Empire Divided(TM), SOE continues to redefine the business of online gaming and the creation of active player communities while introducing new genres on various entertainment platforms.  Headquartered in San Diego, CA, with additional development studios in Austin, TX, and Seattle, WA, SOE has an array of cutting-edge online games in development.


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