Basketball video game aims for one last hurrah

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The Independent Tech

NBA Live 07, a video game released in late 2006, is due to have its online multiplayer hosting switched off on February 2, but not before a record number of players attempt to play the game simultaneously between 18:00 and 19:00 GMT on January 31 in a turnout organized by website

Many sports games are reissued yearly with incremental improvements and squad updates, and, as a result, older versions see less play over time, eventually making it financially unwise for the developer to keep their online components running.

NBA Live 07 is somewhat unique in that it has an otherwise trivial in-game achievement that is notoriously difficult to complete: that of waiting online for a multiplayer game to start at the same time as 1,000 other Xbox 360 users do the same.

Widely regarded as a task included by over-optimistic developers, especially considering that a superior Xbox 360 basketball videogame was released at exactly the same time, the "Online with 1,000 people" achievement has gained a mythic status due to the unlikelihood of ever obtaining it.

Reviews website Giant Bomb, which matches up Xbox achievements with their members' completion records, assigns the "Online with 1,000 people" a designation of 'rare', with less than 0.1% its 70,000-strong userbase able to unlock it prior to the event. That number is sure to have increased by the time the game's servers are shut down on February 2.

One hour has been set aside by Xbox360Achievements for NBA Live 07 owners to get online and stay online until the digitally assembled mass hear a distinctive Xbox chime that marks the unlocking of an achievement.

Many users of Xbox360Achievements have made plans to purchase or rent the game specifically for the event. Members have also been busy inviting other Xbox 360 owners to join the fun.

Event: NBA Live 07 1,000 People Online
Day: January 31, 2010
Venue: Online lobby, NBA Live 07, Xbox Live's online service
Time: One hour from 10:00 US Western / 12:00 US Central / 1:00 PM US Eastern / 6:00 PM GMT / 7:00 PM Central European