BEVERLY, Mass.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Nov. 16, 2004-- The franchise that spawned the top-selling fighting video game of 2002 and 2003 returns in '04 as Atari (Nasdaq: ATAR - News) today announced it has shipped Dragon Ball ZÃ‚Â®: Budokai(TM) 3 for the PlayStationÃ‚Â®2 computer entertainment system, with a nationwide retail in-store date of November 23. In support of the launch, Atari is also introducing a Budokai 3 Limited Edition, which includes an exclusive BrolyÃ‚Â® Chibi toy; a behind-the-scenes bonus DVD featuring Behind the Screams: The Making of Budokai 3; the Budokai(TM) 3 "Super Trailer" video, and access to exclusive information on the first-ever Dragon Ball ZÃ‚Â® action game, Dragon Ball ZÃ‚Â®: Sagas coming to U.S. video game consoles next year.
According to data from the NPD Group, Dragon Ball ZÃ‚Â®: Budokai(TM) was the top-selling fighting game in 2002 and 2003, with Dragon Ball ZÃ‚Â®: Budokai(TM) and Dragon Ball ZÃ‚Â®: Budokai(TM) 2 combining to sell more than 2.9 million units in the U.S. - (according to NPD's August 2004 report, includes PS2 and GC SKUs.)
"The Budokai(TM) series of Dragon Ball ZÃ‚Â® games has established itself as a successful fighting franchise in part because its in-game features have consistently become more sophisticated and authentic with each new product introduction," said Matt Collins, Director of Brand Marketing for Atari's Beverly Studio. "This year's installment takes the biggest gameplay leap forward yet with the introduction of the Saiyan Overdrive Fighting System, making Budokai 3 the best DBZÃ‚Â® fighting game ever made."
Via this new Saiyan Overdrive Fighting engine, Dragon Ball ZÃ‚Â®: Budokai(TM) 3 more faithfully replicates the epic Dragon Ball Z battles that define the animated series, allowing players to:
Go airborne at all times (Bukujutsu Flight)
Defend with Teleportation Counters
Pinball opponents with Teleportation Tornado Combos
Launch the most cinematic DBZ assaults ever with Dragon Rush Attacks
Dragon BallÃ‚Â® Z fans can customize more than 40 of their favorite characters from Dragon Ball ZÃ‚Â®, Dragon Ball GTÃ‚Â®, and DBZÃ‚Â® movies in single-player modes, or challenge a friend using multiplayer mode.
Dragon Ball ZÃ‚Â® airs on Cartoon Network's Toonami Block and is the top-rated cable program among tweens 9-14 and males 12-24. Web sites for the Dragon Ball franchise receive more than 8 million hits per day and the term "Dragonball" was a Top 10 search term on the Lycos 50 Daily Report for 200 consecutive weeks. With more than $3 billion in related merchandising worldwide and over 15 million home videos sold, the Dragon Ball brand has created a new standard for animated action series.
Created by DIMPS, the successful developer of the two previous Budokai(TM) games, Dragon Ball ZÃ‚Â®: Budokai(TM) 3 and Dragon Ball ZÃ‚Â®: Budokai(TM) 3 Limited Edition is rated 'T' for Teen and is available for the suggested retail prices of $49.99 and $59.99, respectively.
For more information, visit www.atari.com/dragonballz..
Focusing on providing the best in high-quality entertainment properties, FUNimation Productions, Ltd. is a full-service brand management company with in-house production, licensing, Internet and marketing departments. FUNimation is also one of the nation's leading independent home video entertainment companies. In addition to the international phenomenon Dragon Ball ZÃ‚Â®, the company also manages brands such as Dragon BallÃ‚Â®, the prequel to the Dragon Ball Z saga; Dragon Ball GTÃ‚Â®, the long awaited sequel to Dragon Ball Z airing on Cartoon Network's Toonami block; Yu Yu HaskushoÃ‚Â®, the popular spirit detective saga also airing on the Toonami block; the mega-hit series Case Closed known in Japan as Detective Conan, currently airing on Cartoon Network's Adult Swim; and many other fan favorites including Fullmetal Alchemist, which is currently on Cartoon Network.
New York-based Atari, Inc. (Nasdaq: ATAR - News) develops interactive games for all platforms and is one of the largest third-party publishers of interactive entertainment software in the U.S. The Company's 1,000+ titles include hard-core, genre-defining games such as DRIV3R(TM), Enter the Matrix(TM), Neverwinter Nights(TM), Stuntman(TM), Test DriveÃ‚Â®, UnrealÃ‚Â® Tournament 2004, and UnrealÃ‚Â® Championship; and mass-market and children's games such as Backyard Sports(TM), Nickelodeon's Blue's Clues(TM) and Dora the Explorer(TM), CivilizationÃ‚Â®, Dragon Ball ZÃ‚Â® and RollerCoaster TycoonÃ‚Â®. Atari, Inc. is a majority-owned subsidiary of France-based Infogrames Entertainment SA (Euronext - ISIN: FR-0000052573), the largest interactive games publisher in Europe. For more information, visit www.atari.com.