Hardware / Video Games Consoles

Halo 3 comes to Xbox 360 in US spring, some fans disappointed

It's been five years since the launch of the original Xbox, and one year since the Xbox 360. To celebrate, Microsoft has announced that Halo 3 is coming to you as a multiplayer beta on Xbox Live in the US spring, with the game still due to come sometime in 2007, disappointing millions of Halo fans.

With the Xbox 360 already a year old, and Halo 3 promising to be another massive hit for Microsoft and games developer Bungie, some Halo fans are disappointed to discover there's still quite a wait yet before they can get their hands on the final, full game.

While the consolation prize is a multiplayer demo due early next year, with a 60 second TV commercial appearing once on ESPN's "Monday Night Football" (and predicted to be available for download via the Xbox Marketplace not too long thereafter), what gamers really want is the real deal, especially when they see the commercial which promises "a unique and compelling look at Master Chief and the world of Halo 3."

But a beta of a multiplayer version is better than nothing, and at least when you are playing the demo, you are playing what is Halo 3, with the final product aiming to eliminate as many bugs from the game as possible before it gets burnt to shiny Xbox 360 discs.

With Halo 2 still an enormously popular game, they'll also get the surprise of some premium new maps to play in, although this is a far cry from a whole new game. At least it's something for impatient Halo players to keep them occupied in the meantime – but only if you're playing it on an Xbox 360, as original Xbox classic owners miss out on this update.

Microsoft's PR documents say that in Halo 3, "Master Chief returns to finish the fight, bringing the epic conflict between the Covenant, the Flood and the entire human race to a dramatic, pulse-pounding climax".

No doubt Microsoft would like there to be a pounding climax to the next-gen race, with Xbox 360 the clear winner, but especially with the PS3 and Wii nearly here (and in the case of the PS3, already available in limited quantities) there's no clear winner at all as yet.

According to Microsoft, Halo 1 and Halo 2 have sold over 14.7 million copies worldwide, resulting in nearly $700 million in sales.

Which goes to prove that even if you're selling your games console at a loss, as long as you can make it up in sales of game software, you might, as a console manufacturer, start enjoying some real profits instead of the massive losses being incurred now in the race to be the undisputed leader in next-generation of personal entertainment technology for the home.

Suorce: iTWire
Authorr: Alex Zaharov-Reutt
Date: Thursday, 16 November 2006

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