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HMV to launch in-store Xbox 360 multi-player centre

Gaming Zone to open in Edinburgh

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If your missus nags you about spending too long on your Xbox 360, then HMV’s establishing a safe haven for you. On Friday, it’s opening its first in-store gaming room, allowing gamers to try before they buy or just giving them a place to relax while their other-half hits the High Street.

Called the HMV Gaming Zone, it will contain 27 Xbox 360 consoles connected to Samsung HD TVs. Users pay either £3 (€4/$6) or £5 (€6/$10) for a one- or three-hour slot, respectively. Gamers can either play alone, with up to 16 others in the Zone, or over Microsoft’s Xbox Live service.

HMV said it plans to host tournaments, with one scheduled soon for Halo 3. It claimed players will have access to "all the latest games".

Little 'uns won’t be able to use the Gaming Zone as a way of playing age-restricted games, though, because HMV will be asking for ID or parental consent before allowing players in.

The Gaming Zone opens in HMV’s Princes Street, Edinburgh store on 19 October. A spokesman for the retailer told Register Hardware that the firm may expand the Zone into other stores - and to additional consoles - if it proves popular.

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