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NEW YORK ( -- Microsoft Corp. is planning a 48-hour video-game marathon in New York and Los Angeles Nov. 2 and Nov. 3 to support the launch of its Xbox game console.

The event, dubbed "Xbox Unleashed," gives gamers a chance to compete to try to win a variety of top prizes including a console and games before the system's official Nov. 15 retail launch.

Gamers will play "Amped: Freestyle Snowboarding," "Halo" and "Project Gotham Racing," among other titles during the tournament. Cumulative scores for each competitor will be tracked, and at the end of the marathon the gamer with the most points in each location will be crowned "Ultimate Xbox Gamer."

Winners will receive one of three prize packages: The grand prize is a customized Ford Explorer Sport Trac with Pioneer Audio/Video systems and an integrated Xbox system. The second-place winner receives an Xbox console and Xbox games, as well as a spring break trip for four to San Felipe in Baja California, Mexico, sponsored by the Official Xbox Magazine. Third place is an Xbox console and Xbox games, and a year's supply of food from Tricon Restaurants' Taco Bell and beverages from SoBe.

Taco Bell and SoBe will also conduct product sampling at the event.

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