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Developers Support Windows as Gaming Platform

Windows Continues to Grow in Popularity as a Development Platform With Availability of DirectX 6.1

SAN JOSE, Calif. - March 17, 1999 - Today at the Game Developers Conference (GDC), Microsoft Corp. announced that independent software vendors are embracing the Microsoft DirectX 6.1 set of APIs, a mature and comprehensive set of system services in the Windows operating system, making Windows a preferred platform for game development.

Growing numbers of game developers are taking advantage of the DirectX 6.1 APIs, including the widely heralded DirectMusic API, as evidenced by the more than 30,000 downloads of the DirectX 6.1 software development kit (SDK) since it was made available last month. In addition, the DirectX 6.0 and 6.1 run-time components have been downloaded over
15 million times since the release of DirectX 6.0 last August. This unprecedented number makes DirectX one of the most downloaded software components offered by Microsoft today. With more than 2,600 game titles currently in development, the Windows platform is poised to continue its role as an industry leader.

"Since the introduction of DirectX in 1995, we've seen an incredible community grow around the creation of games for the Windows operating systems, involving software developers, hardware manufacturers and consumers," said Kevin Bachus, group product manager for DirectX at Microsoft. "Ultimately, the users of Windows will reap the benefits of unparalleled entertainment experiences produced by this fast-paced, dynamic and very creative industry."

"At Gremlin, all of our PC games are developed using DirectX," said James North-Hearn, development director at Gremlin Interactive Ltd. "Considering the problems we had with hardware compatibility and the time wasted developing for individual hardware components prior to DirectX, it would just be impractical to develop a game in today's world of advanced PC features without it."

Microsoft's Presence at the Game Developers Conference

In addition to hosting the Main Event Party at the GDC, Microsoft executives will participate in several panel discussions, speak during presentations and host one-on-one interviews in the company's booth during the conference. Microsoft is a co-sponsor of the 3Dfx Immersion Conference and the Computer Game Developers' Association (CGDA) Spotlight Awards. Microsoft executives will also take the opportunity to speak with independent hardware and software vendors at the conference about DirectX 7.0, which is scheduled to enter beta testing during the second quarter of 1999 and ship later this year.

Microsoft's activities at the Game Developers Conference are being sponsored in part by Advanced Micro Devices Inc., ESS Technology Inc., NVIDIA Corp. and the Microsoft SideWinder joystick game pad. Microsoft's activities at the conference are also being supported by 3Dfx Interactive Inc., 3Dlabs Inc., ATI Technologies Inc., Caligari Corp., Diamond Multimedia Systems Inc., Immersion Corp., Kintetix, Matrox Graphics Inc., The Motion Factory, MultiGen-Paradigm Inc., NxN Software, Rendition division of Micron Technology Inc., S3 Inc., Soundelux Media Labs and VR-1 Inc.


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