Coming To America: Eagerly Anticipated Duel Masters Trading Card Game Arrives On
U.S. Shores This Week
The game thats topped the charts in Japan for much of the past year hits U.S.
toy and hobby stores this week. The DUEL MASTERSTM
Trading Card Game, published by Wizards of the Coast, a subsidiary of Hasbro, Inc.
(NYSE: HAS), already has a fan base in the U.S. among trading card game players and
retailers, who have been chatting about the game online since last fall. The DUEL MASTERS
Trading Card Game officially arrives on store shelves nationwide today, and will be at
the center of an event at Toys "R" Us Times Square this Saturday, March 6, from
1:00 p.m. to 5:00 p.m.
When the first DUEL MASTERS comic books were released to a U.S. audience a
couple of months ago, they quickly sold through their first print run. Last
weekend, Cartoon Network aired a special 90-minute preview of its "DUEL MASTERS"
TV series, which will air weekly beginning later this month. Online, at
www.duelmasters.com, thousands of players have already signed up for
D-MAXTM, the official DUEL MASTERS club.
Following its successful trading card game model, Wizards of the Coast will
release expansion card sets to build on the DUEL MASTERS starter game releasing
this week. Three expansions are planned this year, with more on the way for
2005. Kids will also soon be able to find DUEL MASTERS video games. Atari is
developing two Game Boy Advanced titles and a PlayStation 2 title. This fall,
Hasbro will release a line of DUEL MASTERS action figures and board games.
"With our success in Japan and here in the U.S. the brisk sell-out of the Duel
Masters comic books and great reaction to last weeks sneak preview of the TV
show on Cartoon Network theres a lot of momentum thats been building to this
weeks release of the trading card game," explained Chuck Huebner, Wizards of
the Coasts president and chief executive officer. "Duel Masters has strong
support within Wizards of the Coast and Hasbro and among our licensing and
retail partners." To support the launch, Toys "R" Us will host a DUEL MASTERS
"Learn to Play Day" in all stores nationwide on March 20 as a featured activity
for the new Geoffreys Fundays program.
DUEL MASTERS was jointly developed by Wizards of the Coast and Shogakukan, Inc.,
and Mitsui & Co., Ltd in Japan. DUEL MASTERS game-play is fast and intense.
Players do battle with fantastic creatures that hail from five distinct
civilizations. Each creature has unique powers and characteristics that enhance
strategic play. Players start with a 40-card deck, laying five cards in front of
them to serve as "shields" and holding five cards with which to begin the
battle. They take turns casting cards in an attempt to break through all five of
their opponents shields and win the game.
Wizards of the Coast will initially release DUEL MASTERS in a two-player starter
game ($9.99 MSRP) and booster packs ($3.49 MSRP). Kids will be able to learn how
to play DUEL MASTERS in several ways: online, at www.duelmasters.com, at their
local hobby and game retailers, many of whom are planning to host DUEL MASTERS
events, and through a 15-city mall tour hosted by Wizards of the Coast.
Source: Wizards of the Coast Inc.
Date: March 5, 2004
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