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Microsoft Gearing Up To Major Halo 3 Launch

Halo 3 will go on sale exactly six weeks from today, on September 25, and Microsoft is gearing up for a major launch. Microsoft has reportedly set a goal of first day sales of $155 million, not only more than the $125 million Halo 2 made on launch day, but more than the $151 million Spider-man 3 made in its first weekend. It was a huge deal for Microsoft and the entire industry when Halo 2 beat Spider-man 2’s weekend in a single day, and Microsoft wants to repeat that feat.

Microsoft’s Major Nelson said late last week that pre-orders had topped 1 million copies. At $60 a copy, that’s already $60 million, and that’s completely ignoring gamers who buy the $70 and $130 special editions. Halo 2 picked up 1.5 million pre-orders, which Halo3 has oodles of time to top. There’s an outside shot of Halo 3 beating Halo 2 on pre-orders alone.

Here’a Wall Street Journal article about the marketing storm being built around the launch:

August 14th, 2007 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | Halo 3, Halo, Xbox 360, Xbox | no comments

Deals On Super Xbox 360 Elite Bundle, Dead Rising, Holiday 360 Bundles, Canada Price Drop, Accessories Un-Deal

Lots of deals worth checking out.

Amazon.com has put together an Xbox 360 bundle that is damn near perfect. For $600, the same (real) cost as a PS3, you get an Xbox 360 Elite, HD DVD drive with King Kong in HD DVD, the coupon for five free HD DVD movies, and an HD DVD copy of 300. Considering the Elite is $450 and the HD DVD drive is officially $180, you save thirty bucks and get a free copy of 300. Standing next to a PlayStation 3, that looks damn good.
(via Joystiq)

Dead Rising has been re-released as a Platinum Hits title, meaning the regular price is now a mere $30. I loved Dead Rising, though my disk got all scratched up, so the new status means I should soon be able to get a used copy for less than I’d pay to get a new disk from Capcom (which charges something like $20-25 to replace a scratched disk). I completely recommend picking it up if you haven’t played the game already.

Kotaku discovered two Xbox 360 bundles that will be available in the next few months. In both cases, you can get a copy of Forza Motorsport 2 and Marvel Ultimate Alliance in the box when you buy either an Xbox 360 Premium or an Xbox 360 Elite. No word on pricing yet or when it will be in stores, but I certainly hope for a chance to work my Best Buy warranty to get all sorts of cool stuff when my console bricks.

Looks like Canada got a really nice deal when the 360 price drop came down. While the U.S. got a $50 drop on the Premium, Canada got a drop of 100 (Canadian) dollars. Their console is still $26 more than the U.S. version, but the big drop brings it a lot closer and erases most of the gulf between the U.S. and Canadian prices.

Best Buy, on the other hand, is doing a sort of reverse-deal on Xbox 360 accessories, raising the price of almost all of them $3 above the regular retail price. Not only are you not getting a deal, you’re paying more than you’d pay anywhere else. The consensus is that they are trying to bilk Halo 3 buyers, which is just scummy.

UPDATE: Buy.com has the Xbox 360 Wireless Adapter for just $88.99 with free shipping, over thirty dollars off the regular price. With it, you’ll be able to connect your 360 to the internet wirelessly, all with a tiny peripheral. If it’s your first time using Google Checkout, you can get it for a mere $78.99.
(via GamingDealz)

August 14th, 2007 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | Xbox 360, Xbox | no comments

MSN Makes You Into A Cartoon

msn-cartoon-faces.png

MSN China is running a hugely cool MSN Cartoon beta that will take any photo of you and turn you into a cartoon. Really, really sweet, and the cartoons that come through look great. It’s all in Chinese (as it should be), so you’ll need to do exactly what you see in this video to get through it, but when you’re done, you’ll have your cartoon face with 14 different facial expressions.


Video: MSN Cartoon Beta screencap

Just a note: The cartoon above is based on my regular hair, not my post-marriage long hair. I’m considering chopping off the pony tail anyway…
(via LiveSide)

August 14th, 2007 Posted by Nathan Weinberg | MSN | 4 comments