29 December 2007

Project Revolution Terran Demo released

Project Revolution is a Total Conversion that recreates the Starcraft-experience on the Warcraft 3-engine. After years of development, a public demo, with the terran race playable, has been released. Both Frozen Throne and Brood War are required to play. Get more infos and a download-link on the official site.

23 December 2007

Starcraft-Source interviews Karune

I'm down with the flu (actually I'm playing Aliens vs. Predator 2, but that's not the official word) so I'll make it short: read the news-title, then click here. You might want to scroll down a bit.

18 December 2007

And the prize for the ugliest new unit goes to...

the TF-620 Nomad!

Well, I'm no Art Director. Frankly, I suck a lot at drawing stuff. But this model of the Nomad looks a bit too simple and functional to me. The SCV is like that too, but I guess, with units like the Thor or the Battlecruiser, I thought units that were a bit higher in the tech-tree would look a bit sleeker. Now I am in no way suggesting that Blizzard return to the toy-models fans have been angry with since SC2's announcement. And hell, its a lot better than the Soul Hunter. So, I guess I could live with it. I am looking forward to using its skills though. As far as I was told it will have an automatic repair mode next to the mini-turrets we can see on the website.

Anyway, I am quite happy that Blizzard has updated their SC2-Website again. There is also some new concept art for this 'beauty'.

15 December 2007

Q&A Batch #24 and December Discussion

Luckily a reason for me to update my blog.

Karune: Here we are with our latest batch, answering a little something different for each fan site. Furthermore, one of the most talked about subjects in the community is about the Thor and what will happen to this robust unit. Luckily we've tracked down Dustin for his latest thoughts about this unique Terran unit.

Chat with Devs: The Thor has been the unit that just hasnt quite fit in, in terms of role, but it might have found its own little place it can call home. After the Devs tried out several things with the Thor, including making it a super unit, they have now decided to have it replace the Cobra, as the heavy and air unit counter. Additionally, they may be adding a new mechanic, in which the Thor will need to be killed twice, once to make it immobilized, due to its large size, and then the second time to kill it for good. When immobilized, the Thor will still be able to fire at ground and air units. Additionally, while the Thor is immobilized, a SCV can repair it back to full health, having it regain mobility.

As always, feel free to give the Devs and I a w00t if your enjoying these Q&As!

1. Will there be a way for fan sites to parse replays uploaded to their website so they can pull information such as race, player names, map, etc.? (

Exact details have not been finalized, but we do plan to create a much more robust way of being able to search and share replays in game.

2. The Soul Hunter was considered a good counter unit against the Zerg; why did you remove the Soul Hunter from StarCraft II?

There were a couple of reasons, but one of the more important ones is that it was difficult to make it easily readable in big battles when the Soul Hunter had upgraded. Another reason is that this unit was way too targeted against the Zerg, since they have so many low hit point units, as opposed to other factions.

3. Has the Merc Haven been removed since the Reaper is built from the Barracks? If so, whats replacing it (if anything)? (

The Merc Haven has been brought back in for the current build. It currently needs a Factory as a prerequisite, and is a prerequisite building to build Reapers from the Barracks.

4. Will "Unlockable Content" be included with the game, such as Art Packs, Secret Maps and Missions, Extra Units, and Special Sounds and Movies? (

We are exploring the possibility of having various types of art unlockables, which may include some in-game decals.

5. Is it possible to build Phase Cannons, turn them into energy and then move them across the map to your opponents base or an expansion, redeploying them using a Phase Prism? (

Yes, this tactic will be possible.

6. How does a Zerg Overlord fly? (

To fly, the Zerg Overlord uses gas sacs (filled with helium) combined with a weak telekinetic psi-ability for lift and motive power.

---End of Transmission--- Karune

I find it a bit strange that such a big unit as the Thor is supposed to be a designated anti-air fighter, but I'd rather have it this way instead of having the unit cut from the game. It just looks too cool. I also think the idea of having to destroy it two times is great.

December Discussion Topic: Artistic Direction of StarCraft II

Karune: As everyone has already seen, StarCraft II has brought the world of StarCraft into 3D and added many new units, landscapes, and effects that have never been seen before. On this journey of consistent artistic evolution, we have seen Warp Rays changed to escort ships, the infamous Carrier brought back into action, and even the Siege Tank get a makeover. There is still much left to this artistic journey and now is the community’s chance to let us know what you love about StarCraft II visually and what you would change.

Community Questions for Fans:
1. Do you like the new look of the landscapes?
2. How does the Terran faction look visually?
3. How does the Protoss faction look visually?
4. Additional Feedback you would like to give

I will not directly answer these questions, instead I will comment on the overall mood of the community, as I've seen due to wasting a big amount of my spare time on various community websites' forums.

I am very pleased, since most people agree with me that, the landscapes look stunning for the most part, especially the detail with the doodads as can be seen on most jungle-set screenshots. But we'd like to see more screenshots of desolated places like Char, the iceplanet to be able to comment on these. After all StarCraft is supposed to be about dirty fights.
Same goes for the general feel of the Terran. Although the units look good the buildings are a bit too shiny. An idea was brought up to have them get rustier and more scratches over game-time. Protoss look good all in all, I just wish there was a little more detail in the texture and less bright player-colors. The Dark Templar looks 'unfamiliar' and the Archon should have no legs (though last I heard there were none).
The few Zerg we have seen look OK so far. I like the Mutalisk, I love the Nydus Worm. The model of the Overlord looks ok, but could need more work on its texture. The zergling should not be messed with, please bring back its old form!

07 December 2007

Blizzard: Next-Gen MMO in the works

Blizzard has opened new job positions for an unannounced Next-Generation Massive Multiplayer Online "thing".

A Blizzard Poster has already stated that the new game will not be another Expansion Set for WoW. All the gaming-websites are now spinning their heads of course, because that can only mean one thing, another subscirption-based Online-RPG! Well, not really. My experience has taught me that by Blizzard's books MMO could mean anything (as Blizzard Posters have stated, too bad I can't find a link to confirm), anything that connects a large amount of players over the internet, which includes every Blizzard-game that is supported by Battle.net. Blizzard employees have also said that they have not even started thinking about WoW 2 (here they specifically mentioned a sequel, not a World of Diablo, World of Starcraft or any new IP). My money is on a classic, pure, Diablo-sequel, with fully a functional singleplayer-mode.

SC2 Q&A Batch #23

After a long wait we finally get some more infos to the upcoming StarCraft II.

It has been an exciting week of business related headlines about the new company 'Activision Blizzard.' Many have asked me about how this would affect products like StarCraft II, and the answer is that it won't. We still have our extremely talented development team on this task, working exactly like they have been over the past years. Furthermore, StarCraft II will still be branded as Blizzard Entertainment, meaning you will not see Activision Blizzard logos on the product or introduction. StarCraft II is still set to rock the PC gaming stage!

If you have more questions about the proposed merger, please visit our FAQ at:

Chat with Devs: After my chat with Dustin this past week, he wanted me to remind everyone that there are still several new units being created and tested for all three factions. What you have seen of the Protoss and Terran factions are in no way finished and more new units will be introduced, as well as the likeliness of current units being replaced. As always, feel free to give the Devs and I a w00t if your enjoying these Q&As!

---StarCraft II Q&A - Batch 23---

(chat with devs) Reminder that fans havent seen everything and there are still several new units in development for all three factions.

1. Will the Campaign have as many videos as the original Starcraft? (

There will be several more in-game cutscenes, which are at a much higher quality than the original StarCraft pre-rendered movies. And while StarCraft II s single player will likely feature a few less pre-rendered movies, they will be much longer and more epic than anything seen in the original StarCraft.

2.Is the ghost unit going to be able to use the EMP Shockwave and -within short time interval- the Nuclear Strike as well? (starcraft2.4players.de)

Currently, there is no restriction to when you can follow up a special ability with another, as long as there are available energy points.

3. Will the Ghost's EMP affect building shields and energy? (

Yes, the Ghosts EMP ability currently affects both building and unit shields, as well as casters energy. It is important to note that there is a possibility the Ghost may lose its EMP ability due to balance.

4. Will there be some sort of wall structure in StarCraft, for any of the races? (vilegaming.com)

Aside from building current structures close to each other to form walls, such as a line of Terran Supply Depots, no, there will not be walls that can be built. On the other hand, there will be some new wall structures in the single player mode and these doodads can also be accessed in the map editor.

5. Will the game feature a mechanic similar to Warcraft 3 where if a selection of units contains more than one unit type then the whole selection will move at the speed of the slowest unit to maintain cohesion? (sclegacy.com)

No, units in the same selection will not move at the same speeds. The slower units will need to be micromanaged by the players to keep up with the larger group.

--- End of Transmission ---

Interesting to see that it is still undecided which units may or may not make it into the final game. But also udnerstandable since they are probably going to be the main selling point of the game, at least to people who care mostly about multiplayer-battles, instead of the singleplayer-campaign or graphics.

Also good to hear that the Vivendi-Activision-merger will (officially) not influence the way Blizzard operates.

02 December 2007

Top 10 reasons of why Half-Life: Portal is a girl's game

I came to a conclusion while attempting to build my own Weighted Companion Cube. Half-Life: Portal is a girl's game! here are my reasons why (and a sad attempt of trying to be funny):

10. The protagonist is female. Although, from my World of Warcraft-experience I get the impression that boys kind of like that.

9. The protagonist is not sexy

(This one is generally prefered by the male audience)

8. The portals are orange and blue, every women's favorite make-up color.

7. A cube with hearts on it is the player's best friend.

6. There are no real female hardcore-gamers, so the game is just about long enough with 2-3 hours playtime.

5. Cute turrets are the only effective menace in the game.

4. Thanks to the portals women can marvel at themselves from every possible angle.

3. Portal picks the female inferiority complex as central theme.
(GLaDOS: "You have no friends! Nobody likes you!")

2. Women like it more complex, that's why there is never a direct exit route.

1. The game is not really violent :-(
(Shit! Wrong picture!)

Here's a link to someone who actually agrees with me, with a little more insight on the actual gameplay. (Click!)

Vivendi and Activision become Activion Blizzard

Link to the Article

SANTA MONICA, Calif. & PARIS--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Activision, Inc. (NASDAQ: ATVI) and Vivendi (Euronext Paris: VIV) today announced that they have signed a definitive agreement to combine Vivendi Games, Vivendi's interactive entertainment business -- which includes Blizzard Entertainment’s® World of Warcraft®, the world’s #1 multi-player online role-playing game franchise -- with Activision, creating the world’s largest pure-play online and console game publisher. The new company, Activision Blizzard, is expected to have approximately $3.8 billion in pro forma combined calendar 2007 revenues and the highest operating margins of any major third-party video game publisher. On closing of the transaction, Activision will be renamed Activision Blizzard and will continue to operate as a public company traded on NASDAQ under the ticker ATVI.

Activision, one of the world’s leading independent publishers of interactive entertainment, is best known for its top-selling franchises, including Guitar Hero®, Call of Duty® and the Tony Hawk series, as well as Spider-Man™, X-Men™, Shrek®, James Bond™ and TRANSFORMERS™. Blizzard Entertainment, a division of Vivendi Games, has projected calendar 2007 revenues of $1.1 billion, operating margins of over 40% and approximately $520 million of operating profit. Blizzard owns the #1 multi-player online role-playing game franchise, World of Warcraft, which currently has over 9.3 million subscribers worldwide. Blizzard’s World of Warcraft, Warcraft®, StarCraft® and Diablo® games account for four of the top-five best-selling PC game titles of all time. Vivendi Games also owns popular franchises, including Crash Bandicoot™ and Spyro™. Pro forma for calendar 2007, Activision Blizzard expects to generate approximately 70% of its revenues from owned franchises. As a result of the business combination, Activision Blizzard expects to have the most diversified and broadest portfolio of interactive entertainment assets in its industry, positioning the combined company to capitalize on the continued worldwide growth in interactive entertainment.

Jean-Bernard Lévy, Chairman of the Management Board and Chief Executive Officer of Vivendi stated: “This alliance is a major strategic step for Vivendi and is another illustration of our drive to extend our presence in the entertainment sector. By combining Vivendi’s games business with Activision, we are creating a worldwide leader in a high-growth industry. We are excited about the opportunities for Activision Blizzard as a broader entertainment software platform. We believe this transaction will create significant value for Activision Blizzard and Vivendi stockholders. In Activision, we have found a partner with a highly complementary business and strong operating team. Bobby Kotick and Brian Kelly are industry pioneers, well known for creating shareholder value. The combined strength of the existing management teams at both companies will set the stage for further profitable growth of Activision Blizzard. We look forward to being an active and supportive majority stockholder in a company that is poised to lead the worldwide interactive entertainment industry in the years ahead.”

René Penisson, Member of the Management Board of Vivendi and current Chairman of Vivendi Games, added: “We are very confident that by combining forces, Activision Blizzard will set the highest standards in quality, reputation and profitability, and will bring together the best creative teams in the industry. The combination of this unique product portfolio with highly professional employees gives us great confidence in the growth prospects for Activision Blizzard.”

Said Robert Kotick, Activision's Chairman and Chief Executive Officer: “This is an outstanding transaction for Activision and our stockholders, as well as a pivotal event in the continuing transformation of the interactive entertainment industry. By combining leaders in mass-market entertainment and subscription-based online games, Activision Blizzard will be the only publisher with leading market positions across all categories of the rapidly growing interactive entertainment software industry and reach the broadest possible audiences. By joining forces with Vivendi Games, we will become the immediate leader in the highly profitable online games business and gain a large footprint in the rapidly growing Asian markets, including China and Korea, while maintaining our leading operating performance across North America and Europe. Activision stockholders will benefit from significantly increased earnings power and the recurring nature and predictability of subscription-based revenues, while also having the opportunity, if they choose, to receive $27.50 per share for a portion of their shares in the post-closing tender offer.”

Kotick continued: “Vivendi Games provides Activision with unique strategic and financial benefits and will allow us to leverage our franchises into emerging online opportunities as Blizzard has done so successfully. Activision has been very focused on margin expansion, and this transaction will meaningfully increase our overall operating margins as we expand our franchises online and in new geographies. Diversifying our revenue base among subscription-based online, console and PC formats, as well as wireless and casual emerging opportunities, gives us the broadest platform to capitalize on industry growth. With Blizzard’s successful franchises, such as World of Warcraft, StarCraft and an exciting pipeline of yet-to-be announced titles, Vivendi Games’ and Blizzard’s management team will join with Activision’s strong and experienced leaders to become an even more powerful force for innovation in online and offline interactive entertainment across a wide range of platforms. This transaction also provides a unique relationship with Universal Music Group – the world’s largest music company – which will benefit Guitar Hero and further extend our sizable leadership position in music-based games.”

Mike Morhaime, President and Chief Executive Officer of Blizzard, added: "Blizzard's industry-leading PC games business, with a track record of nine consecutive bestsellers and a global subscriber base of more than 9.3 million World of Warcraft players, is an exceptional fit for Activision's highly profitable console games business. From our interactions with the Activision team, it is clear we have much in common in terms of our approaches to game development and publishing. Above all, we are looking forward to continue creating great games for Blizzard gamers around the world, and we believe this new partnership will help us to do that even better than before.”

Structure & Terms of Transaction

Under the terms of the agreement, Vivendi Games will be merged with a wholly owned subsidiary of Activision. In the merger, shares of Vivendi Games will be converted into 295.3 million new shares of Activision common stock. Based on the transaction price of $27.50 per share of Activision common stock, this implies a value of approximately $8.1 billion for Vivendi Games. Concurrently with the merger, Vivendi will purchase 62.9 million newly issued shares of Activision common stock at a price of $27.50 per share – a premium of 31% to Activision’s average closing price over the past 20 trading days – for a total of $1.7 billion in cash. As a result of these transactions, Vivendi will own an approximate 52% ownership stake in Activision Blizzard on a fully diluted basis.

Within five business days after closing the transaction, Activision Blizzard will launch a $4 billion all-cash tender offer to purchase up to 146.5 million Activision Blizzard common shares at $27.50 per share. The tender offer will be funded by Activision Blizzard’s cash on hand at closing, including the $1.7 billion in cash received from the Vivendi share purchase. In addition, Vivendi has agreed to acquire from Activision Blizzard additional newly issued shares for up to an additional $700 million of Activision common stock at $27.50 per share, the proceeds of which would also be used to fund the tender offer. Any remaining funds required to complete the tender offer will be borrowed by Activision Blizzard from Vivendi or third-party lenders. If the tender offer is fully subscribed, Vivendi will own an approximate 68% ownership stake in Activision Blizzard on a fully diluted basis.

The transaction is expected to be immediately accretive in its first year post-closing for Activision’s stockholders and slightly accretive for Vivendi’s stockholders. Activision Blizzard is targeting pro forma operating income of $1.1 billion and pro forma earnings per share (EPS) in excess of $1.20 in calendar year 2009. The transaction is expected to be at least $0.20 accretive to Activision stockholders in calendar year 2009.


Activision Blizzard’s board of directors will be comprised of eleven members: six directors designated by Vivendi, two Activision management directors and three independent directors who currently serve on Activision’s board of directors. René Penisson, currently a member of the Management Board of Vivendi and Chairman of Vivendi Games, will serve as Chairman of Activision Blizzard. Brian Kelly, currently Co-Chairman of Activision, will serve as Co-Chairman of Activision Blizzard. The three independent directors will be Richard Sarnoff, Robert J. Corti and Robert Morgado. Other Activision Blizzard directors will be Robert Kotick (President and Chief Executive Officer of Activision Blizzard), Bruce Hack (Vice-Chairman and Chief Corporate Officer of Activision Blizzard), Jean-Bernard Lévy (Chairman of the Management Board and Chief Executive Officer of Vivendi), Doug Morris (Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of the Universal Music Group), Philippe Capron (Member of the Management Board and Chief Financial Officer of Vivendi), and Frédéric Crépin (Senior Vice President, Head of Legal, Vivendi).


Following the completion of the transaction, Robert Kotick will be President and Chief Executive Officer of Activision Blizzard. Bruce Hack, current Chief Executive Officer of Vivendi Games, will serve as Vice-Chairman and Chief Corporate Officer of Activision Blizzard, accountable for leading the merger integration and the finance, human resources and legal functions. Mike Griffith will serve as President and Chief Executive Officer of Activision Publishing, which after closing will include the Sierra Entertainment, Sierra Online and Vivendi Games Mobile divisions in addition to the Activision business. Mike Morhaime will continue to serve as President and Chief Executive Officer of Blizzard Entertainment. Thomas Tippl, currently Chief Financial Officer of Activision, will be appointed Chief Financial Officer of Activision Blizzard and Jean-François Grollemund, currently Chief Financial Officer of Vivendi Games, will be appointed Chief Accounting Officer of Activision Blizzard.

Conditions to Closing

The transaction has been approved by the boards of directors of Vivendi, Vivendi Games and Activision. The transaction is subject to the approval of Activision's stockholders and the satisfaction of customary closing conditions and regulatory approvals, including expiration of applicable waiting periods and receipt of applicable approvals under the Hart-Scott-Rodino Antitrust Improvements Act and European Union merger control regulations. Pending regulatory and stockholder approval, the companies expect the transaction to be completed in the first half of calendar year 2008.

Financial and Legal Advisors

Activision’s financial advisor on the transaction is Allen & Company LLC and its legal counsel is Skadden, Arps, Slate, Meagher & Flom LLP. Vivendi’s financial advisor is Goldman, Sachs & Co. and Gibson, Dunn & Crutcher LLP is acting as legal counsel to Vivendi.

Conference Call and Webcast Information

The management of both companies will host a joint conference call and live webcast on Monday, December 3, 2007 at 8:30 a.m. ET, 2:30 p.m. Paris time, 1:30 p.m. London time to discuss this announcement. The companies welcome all members of the investment community to listen to the call live by dialing into (888) 765-5554 in the U.S. or (913) 312-1235 outside the U.S. The live webcast of the call can be accessed at www.vivendi.com and www.activision.com.

For those unable to listen to the live conference call, an audio replay of the call will be available through December 17, 2007, approximately two hours after the call’s conclusion and can be accessed by calling (888) 203-1112 in the U.S. or (719) 457-0820 outside the U.S. and entering the pass-code: 5648597. In addition, a webcast replay also will be archived on the Investor Relations section of each company’s website.

Activision Broadcast Media Center

Broadcast quality video and web-streaming video is available in PAL and NTSC formats on Activision's Broadcast Media Center at http://activision.pondserver.com. Pathfire users can download video to their Digital Media Gateway by choosing the Pathfire Enabled file. All video is free of charge and its use is unrestricted.

About Vivendi

Vivendi is a global leader in digital entertainment with activities in music, TV, cinema, mobile, internet, and games through its ownership of Universal Music Group, Canal+ Group, SFR, Maroc Telecom and Vivendi Games. In 2006, Vivendi had revenues of over €20 billion and a global headcount of 39,000. Listed on the Paris Stock market, Vivendi is a member of the CAC 40. More information about Vivendi is available at www.vivendi.com.

About Vivendi Games

Vivendi Games is a global developer, publisher and distributor of multiplatform interactive entertainment. The company is the leader in the subscription-based massively multi-player online role-playing games (MMORPG) category and is building on its position in the PC, console and handheld games markets. Vivendi Games has a global presence, a history of franchise success, development teams around the world and a catalog of its own original and licensed material. Vivendi Games has approximately 4,000 employees and is driven by four creative divisions: Blizzard Entertainment, Sierra Entertainment, Sierra Online and Vivendi Games Mobile. Irvine, California-based Blizzard, creator of the Warcraft, StarCraft and Diablo games series, is by far the largest of the four entities with approximately 2,300 employees.

About Blizzard Entertainment, Inc.

Best known for blockbuster hits including World of Warcraft and the Warcraft, StarCraft, and Diablo series, Blizzard Entertainment, Inc. (www.blizzard.com), a division of Vivendi Games, is a premier developer and publisher of entertainment software renowned for creating some of the industry’s most critically acclaimed games. Blizzard Entertainment’s track record includes ten #1-selling games and multiple Game of the Year awards. The company’s online-gaming service, Battle.net®, is one of the largest in the world, with millions of active users.

About Activision, Inc.

Headquartered in Santa Monica, California, Activision, Inc. is a leading worldwide developer, publisher and distributor of interactive entertainment and leisure products. Founded in 1979, Activision posted net revenues of $1.5 billion for the fiscal year ended March 31, 2007. Activision has more than 2,000 employees worldwide.

Activision maintains operations in the United States, Canada, the United Kingdom, France, Germany, Ireland, Italy, Scandinavia, Spain, the Netherlands, Australia, Japan and South Korea. More information about Activision and its products can be found on the company's World Wide Web site, which is located at www.activision.com.

Calculation of Certain Estimates

All financial information relating to Activision, Vivendi Games and Blizzard Entertainment included in this press release, including pro forma estimates for calendar year 2007, and projections for future periods, represent the companies' respective estimates and projections and were not prepared in accordance with U.S. Generally Accepted Accounting Principles. These estimates exclude the impact of expenses related to equity-based compensation and related tax benefits, potential one-time restructuring charges of up to $100 million that may be incurred in connection with the transaction, and the potential impact from non-cash intangible amortization resulting from purchase price accounting. In addition, these estimates assume continued net revenue growth as well as expense reductions and other synergies that may or may not be realized. Estimates for future periods are subject to significant inherent uncertainties, which increase with periods farther into the future. Actual results may differ materially and are subject to risks, including the risks described in the Cautionary Note below. To the extent that the estimates for calendar year 2007 are based on the historical performance of Activision and Vivendi Games through September 30, 2007, not all such historical information has been audited, the accounting policies of the companies may differ, and the two companies have different fiscal years. The financial information for Blizzard Entertainment contained in this press release is presented on a stand-alone basis and does not reflect the results of operations of other Vivendi Games divisions.

Cautionary Note Regarding Forward-looking Statements

Information in this press release that involves expectations, plans, intentions or strategies regarding the future are forward-looking statements that are not facts and involve a number of risks and uncertainties. In this release they are identified by references to dates after the date of this release and words such as "outlook," "will," "will be," "remains," "to be," "plans," "believes", "may", "expects," "intends," "should," "continue," and similar expressions. Factors that could cause actual future results to differ materially from those expressed in the forward-looking statements set forth in this release include, but are not limited to, the timing and successful completion of the transactions described in this release (including the timing and receipt of stockholder and regulatory approvals and the satisfaction of other closing conditions), the combined companies’ success in executing planned strategies and achieving assumed synergies and cost savings, sales of each company’s titles, shifts in consumer spending trends, the seasonal and cyclical nature of the interactive game market, the ability of Activision Blizzard to predict consumer preferences among competing hardware platforms (including next-generation hardware), declines in software pricing, product returns and price protection, product delays, retail acceptance of the company’s products, adoption rate and availability of new hardware and related software, industry competition, rapid changes in technology and industry standards, protection of proprietary rights, maintenance of relationships with key personnel, customers, vendors and third-party developers, international economic and political conditions, integration of recent acquisitions and identification of suitable future acquisition opportunities, and foreign exchange rate changes. Other such factors include, without limitation, the additional risks identified in Activision's most recent annual report on Form 10-K and in the documents Vivendi has filed with the Autorité des Marchés Financiers (French securities regulator) and which are also available in English on Vivendi’s website (www.vivendi.com). Investors and security holders may obtain a free copy of documents filed by Vivendi with the Autorité des Marchés Financiers at www.amf-france.org, or directly from Vivendi.

The forward-looking statements in this release are based upon information available to Activision and Vivendi as of the date of this release, and neither Activision nor Vivendi assumes any obligation to update any such forward-looking statements. Forward-looking statements believed to be true when made may ultimately prove to be incorrect. These statements are not guarantees of future performance and are subject to risks, uncertainties and other factors, some of which are beyond the companies’ control and may cause actual results to differ materially from current expectations.