Play the Xbox 360 before anyone else

This press release landed in my inbox a few moments will give you something to do while we all wait for Xbox Live to come back online after the upgrade. By they way, I just dropped by the Xbox Live Operations War Room…and things are progressing nicely.

“The Beginning is Nigh?
Microsoft Reveals True Nature of ?oHex 168? Online Contest and Secret Xbox 360 Launch Event
360 Lucky Winners Will Get VIP Trip to the Not-Yet-Unveiled Xbox 360 Launch Event and
Xbox 360 Console Package 6 Days before the World

?oSome of These Things are Not Like The Others. Some of You People Are Not Like the Others.?
?” Dr. Jason Q. Lutz, ?oThe Principles of Hex?

Xbox confirmed today the true nature of the mysterious online competition that has grabbed the imagination of web surfers and game enthusiasts across the Internet and spawned a flurry of message board activity. ?oThe Sign of the Hex? was created by Microsoft and 42 Entertainment to be a fun, tongue-in-cheek contest to engage the gaming community in the weeks leading up to the launch of Xbox 360.

Visitors to the site are introduced to the fictional character ?oDr. Jason Q. Lutz? (a specialist who has dedicated his career to analyzing the phenomenon known as ?oHex 168?) and are enlisted as ?ofellow truth-seekers? in the quest to research and catalog this anomalous global occurrence. In the spirit of the outlandish stories and farcical photos appearing in supermarket tabloid the ?oWeekly World News,? entrants are asked to submit photos or short videos capturing ?omanifestations of the power of hex? which are posted on the site for public voting. Entrants have until November 4th to submit entrees and voters have until November 7 to rate each individual evidence submissions as ?oHexed or Not? and determine the semi-finalists. A panel of pre-qualified judges will then determine the grand prize winners in each category.

A total of 360 grand prize winners will be chosen from the competition. The prizes are a veritable gamer’s dream come true:

Hex 168 Grand Prize

A three day/two night VIP trip to the not-yet-unveiled Xbox 360 Launch Event in November

Microsoft Xbox 360 gaming console?” received six full days before launch!

Copies of three top Xbox 360 games ?” ?oPerfect Dark Zero,? ?oProject Gotham Racing 3,? and ?oKameo: Elements of Power?

(1) year Gold membership to Xbox LIVE

The Xbox 360 launch event will take place in a yet-unnamed, secret location shortly before the North American launch. Xbox fans from around the world will have the opportunity to join this invitation-only festival and be among the first in the world to experience Xbox 360. Gamers will have the opportunity to play the complete launch lineup for the first time and get ?osneak peeks? on several never-before-seen games. In addition, all attendees at this exclusive event get a chance to celebrate the final hours leading into launch with musical performances, participate in special event entertainment and get a one-of-a kind Xbox 360 gift. Participants have until November 4, 2005 to post their Hex submissions and become a part of pop culture and video game history.

For more information, or to enter the competition, visit