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An entirely new version of the Internet's premier
3-D multiuser environment

SAN FRANCISCO, Calif., June 24, 1996 -- Worlds Inc., the worldwide leader in Internet Virtual Reality, today released a completely updated version of Worlds Chat, the popular 3-D multiuser online community. Worlds Chat 1.0 Gold offers bold new artistry, four new virtual worlds, an extensive avatar gallery, unlimited simultaneous users and numerous advanced features.

Worlds Chat enables almost any Internet user to abandon the flat text-and- pictures world of traditional Web pages and explore a giant virtual space with thousands of other real people. Users interact with one another through online personifications, or "avatars," and it all works on equipment no more exotic than a personal computer connected to the Internet.

"The true value of Worlds Chat is the dramatic context it provides for people to meet and talk with each other online, which is one of the biggest uses of the Internet today," says Don Fowler, president and CEO of Worlds, Inc. "We've responded to our users' comments and requests by creating a stimulating environment that welcomes visitors and encourages them to return again and again. We've added more worlds to explore, more features to enhance interactivity, and exciting new graphics to make the whole adventure much more enjoyable."

Worlds has developed an underlying scenario for Worlds Chat 1.0 Gold in which the courageous and capable Captain Javinda Ushad discovers an abandoned space station and decides to reopen it for exploration. Worlds Chat users are encouraged to embark upon a pioneering effort to explore and repopulate the space station.

"Worlds Chat is designed to bring people together, so it's always been very easy to use," said Rich Abel, director of business development at Worlds, Inc. "Worlds Chat's clear and simple user interface allows visitors to jump right in and start chatting and exploring."

Worlds Chat 1.0 Gold provides the following enhancements to previous versions:

Artistry - The greatest -- and most notable -- improvement in Worlds Chat 1.0 Gold is a far more visual and realistic representation of the worlds through which users navigate. The quality of graphic images has been greatly enhanced, and approximately 20MB of new art, sound and music has been added.

Size - Worlds Chat has grown substantially, now boasting approximately 500 rooms compared to 50 rooms in previous versions.

New Worlds - In previous versions, users could teleport between two worlds named Sadness and Glee. In Worlds Chat 1.0 Gold, four new worlds have been added; named Sky, Desert, Gothic, and Garden. These worlds, unlike the still surviving Sadness and Glee areas, are actually external to the central space station and each offers its own unique look and feel.

More Avatars - Previous versions of Worlds Chat had 15 avatars to choose from; the Gold edition offers 40.

Persistent Unique Identity - Users can set a password that restricts other Worlds Chat visitors from using their name, thereby enabling unique identities to be established.

Placemarking - Users can now easily return to places they enjoy and track where they've been.

Unlimited Number of Simultaneous Users - Worlds Chat 1.0 Gold uses distributed server architecture to allow scalability and provide a world that grows as quickly as the population. Users will never see the message, "Sorry, this room is full."

Crowd Control - Worlds Chat 1.0 Gold uses a crowd control algorithm that lets visitors see and hear only the nearest six people in a room. This algorithm helps maintain a high frame rate and low memory requirements for all users. Crowd control also eliminates visual clutter.

Point-And-Click Whispering - Users can participate in private conversations by simply clicking on the avatar they wish to address and choosing "Whisper to" from a pop-up menu. The message will only be heard by the avatar specified. Users can whisper to people in other rooms and worlds, regardless of location.

Point-And-Click Group Whispering - Users can select up to 20 avatars to include in a group discussion. Only those avatars selected will hear what is being said by anyone else in the group.

Whisper History - This feature lets users track with whom they've spoken.

Point-And-Click Muting - Users can quickly and easily mute other users when subject matter is no longer interesting or appropriate.

Older versions of Worlds Chat have been tried by over a hundreds of thousands of Internet users around the world since April 1995, while concurrent logins are about 500 at a time.

Worlds Chat Pricing and Availability
Worlds Chat 1.0 Gold ships on CD-ROM and is available direct from Worlds, Inc. for $32.95 plus $5 shipping and handling. A demo version is available free by downloading it from the Worlds web site ( Worlds Chat 1.0 Gold requires a 486/66MHz or faster PC running Windows 3.1x, Windows 95, or Windows NT with 8MB RAM minimum (16MB recommended) and 24MB available hard disk space. Users also need a 256-color display, SLIP/PPP or direct Internet connection running at at least 14.4 kbps, 2x CD-ROM drive for installation, a 16-bit sound card (optional).

About Worlds Inc.
Worlds Inc. is the worldwide leader in Internet Virtual Reality through its licensing, production, and development efforts. Worlds Inc. has been leading the trend toward a new online paradigm, from being one of the first to work on and embrace VRML 2.0, to enabling online banking with Visa, to creating a virtual playspace for children in pediatric hospitals in conjunction with the Starbright Foundation. Through the convergence of the computer, the telephone, and the television, Worlds Inc. technology represents a whole new metaphor for interaction and connectivity. Using Worlds Inc. enabled applications, people interact through their computers rather than simply with them. Worlds Inc. helps people from around the world communicate through seamless communications links tied to an interface they can readily understand because it mimics the physical world. This ability to create shared 3-D virtual environments that run on today's technology has been described as "astonishingly cool" by the New York Times, "the hottest innovation the Internet will see this year" by the Dallas Morning News, and "the next step in the evolution of online communication" by the Wall Street Journal.