UK gamers will be able to test Microsoft's X-box console four months before they will be able to buy one.
Two days after the US launch on 15 November, London gamers will be able to try out the console and games such as Project Gotham Racing, Halo, and Oddworld: Munch's Oddysee.
Billed 'Xperience', Microsoft will then tour the UK's major cities to showcase the console.
Should gamers be sufficiently impressed, they can then pre-order consoles, which will be available in the UK on 14 March 2002 priced at £299.
It appears at London's Nutopia from 17 Nov-16 Dec, with weekend appearances at Birmingham's The Custard Factory (24-25 Nov), Manchester's Freemasons Hall (1-2 Dec), and Glasgow's The Lighthouse (8-9 Dec).
But thanks to X-box's March 2002 date, Microsoft has handed rival Sony a two-Christmas head start for its rival PlayStation 2 machine.
Sony recently made price cuts giving the PlayStation 2 a street price of around £199, and the company has promised 90 additional games for the console before Christmas 2001.
Sony claims it has now shipped 20 million PlayStation 2's worldwide.
Microsoft is making 1.5 million X-box consoles available in Europe between 14 March and mid-June 2002.
Unlike its rivals, it has features such as a hard drive and broadband-ready connections to allow more PC-like gaming, such as data-intensive strategy games and online game playing.
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