back to article Halo 3 UK launch fails to fire

Despite the sort of marketing hype usually extended only to film releases and console-style early opening hours, the Halo 3 UK launch was notable for the absence of gamers and large piles of unsold copies. Halo 3 Public Beta gameplay movie at Gametrailers Halo 3: the game everyone's been waiting for? The game officially …


This topic is closed for new posts.
  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    A sign of Intelligence

    I think this goes to show the intelligence amonst the gaming community. Turn up at a high street shop at 8am to get a game you can get delivered by post?

    Why on earth would any sane person buy a game at HMV etc in the first place? Everyone with access to a net connection knows that various online retailers are at least 10 quid cheaper than the high street chains.

    So that's where the british gamers are, they're at home having breakfast awaiting their preordered game arriving through the letterbox!

  2. Tetsugaku-San

    Could it be that it's just massively over rated?

    Because Halo 1,2 and 3 are massively outclassed by dozens of other titles, this year alone Bioshock and Team fortress 2 are known to be far better titles than Halo3.

    I can't see the fuss over a vapid, oversimplified FPS that you have to be handicapped to play (by using a controller - not a mouse and keyboard)

    Ho hum , as usual the news of the death of gaming on the PC is premature.

  3. Paul Darcy

    Hollow 3

    Well the hype went into hype-rspace then. Shame really. Reckon if it was a warmer night it could have been better.

  4. Chris Simmons


    ...Halo passed its Half-Life?

  5. Darryl Ashton

    Early release

    The Gamestation near me (in Greater London) appeared to be selling copies at 5pm yesterday (day before release), despite advertising a midnight launch at the same store. The shelves were full, and I can't imagine that being any different today...

    I went to the World of Warcraft: The Burning Crusade release in Oxford Street and that was absolutely heaving. Strange world, where a hotly-anticipated and heavily-promoted Xbox 360 shooter gets much less interest than a PC MMORPG...

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Most anticipated game ever? Hmmm....

    I think the over-hype killed it, much in the same way that a big budget film feature is over-hyped prior to release... or maybe it's just not that good.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Finish the Hype!

    Well I will be playing the game at some point but I'm not exactly bothered about it. If anything all the hype has made me want to avoid it. I was/am really tempted to get the legendary edition just for the spartan helmet, not because I'm a fanboy but just because it will look cool in my study. (George Lucas take note for the 6 Movie Star Wars Special edition we all know will be here soon).

    Anyway, I'm just glad all the hype is done with so I can get back to Bioshock till I can buy Halo 3 cheap.

  8. Steven Batchelor

    Halo 3

    Bought a copy for my son LAST Wednesday (19/9) fron Argos, I dont know how many other people have done the same. May account for the lack of people for the launch. BTW he has finished the single player and is looking forward to online multiplayer tonight.


  9. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Deliberate supply shortages coming back to haunt?

    Hopefully this is a clear sign that gamers are sick of the deliberate shortages in supply experienced time and again with the Xbox 360, Nintendo Wii etc. People won't turn up to a big launch if they expect the game to be as short in supply as the console first was.

  10. Malcolm


    ... everyone pre-ordered it from an online store and had it turn up in the post yesterday, as I did :)

  11. Jimster71

    People got them on mail order

    I think a lot of the gamers who were waiting for Halo 3 would have pre-ordered the game from mail order companies.

    Most of these people, like me, would have received the game yesterday.

    Why queue up at midnight?

  12. David Evans

    Why queue?

    Let's face it, you've got to be fairly retarded to queue up at midnight (or at all). I bet if you could see the detailed ELSPA day one figures most Halo 3 sales will be web pre-orders, especially as the likes of GAME have been promoting the fanboy-pleasing special editions online for ages.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    It's not pay-day yet

    They should have launched it at the beginning of the month, not the end. I'm skint so I have to wait till the end of the week before I've got the ridiculous quantity of cash they require.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    over 50 people

    in Brighton outside Game at 11.45

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    big surprise?

    Where's the surprise in there being no queues? If the selected shops were open at midnight then I'd imagine there would have been queues but if it's generally availably in all shops from 8am, why would people make a special trek to the west end?

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Erm, post?

    Everyone I know who bought Halo 3 (and that's many, many people) bought it online and had it delivered so they'd have it when they got back from work. It was significantly cheaper online than in shops (unsurprisingly). Why would anyone wait on a freezing September morning when they could have it delivered? It fact, who apart from parents even buys 1st hand games from high street shops? Not many, if e-Play's demise is anything to go by.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Halo 3 Hype and release

    meh. Give me a Wii instead!

  18. Duncan Smith

    I Q'ed Up For It

    I read that Game decided to keep Oxford Street closed for fear of people being mugged, so a bit unfair really to say there was no-one waiting outside!

    I headed to my local Asda in Bristol, and at 11.30pm there were at least 20 people ahead of me, and by midnight there was maybe 100 people waiting.

    As for the game, I prefer MoH: Airborne ! Oh and I got the Special Edition with the scratched disks :-)

  19. Steve Sutton

    Halo what now?

    Clearly I have missed something. I have certainly missed all of the hype. Perhaps somehow I have fallen through a wormhole and traveled instantaneously from three months ago to November 5th today, I mean today. It was only yesterday, when I even heard that Halo 3 existed, when I was reading about all the hype on BBC News.

    Still, never mind, I'm quite sure that I'm not missing much. *whistle*

  20. Tim Lake

    BBC report on Halo 3... or is it Killzone 2!

    For those who haven't seen out glorious BBC in a gigantic cock up:

    For those less geeky than myself, the game footage they show (startinon the screen outside the Odeon) is in fact, the cinematic trailer of Killzone 2 for PS3!


  21. John Dow

    It's all about the price

    I don't think lack of queues is representative of gamers' lack of interest in Halo 3[0]. I think it more accurately reflects the insane prices high street shops charge for new releases. Most people I know who are buying it have pre-ordered it only and paid as much as a tenner less.


    [0] Although, I must confess that my own personal interest in Generic Sci-Fi Shooter Rev C is less than - well - none.

  22. Nick Leverton


    Our lad is definitely a victim of the marketing hype for Halo 3 and has himself up into a tizzy over wanting it yesterday (not that our local outlets are likely to open all night in any case !)

    Unfortunately he's forgotten that we told him if he insisted on having an expensive Xbox 3 for his birthday last month, there would be no money left in our kitty to buy extra games for it.

    Shame eh ?


  23. Steven Dick

    People are Sheep

    I don't understand why people would queue up for any consumer gadget (iPhone) or console/computer game. I'd really like to see a write-up on this type of phenomena from a physiologist, because I find it bizarre.

    It's not like these things are rare or rationed.

  24. Hedley Phillips

    Doesn't look that great

    After all the hype I was expecting something pretty amazing but when I saw the clips of it on the news last night I was less than impressed.

    Just looks like Unreal Tournement.

    I am sure I am wrong because it is a very popular game witha huge following, but it just didn't look that brilliant.

  25. Iain

    Why bother?

    Without knocking Halo 3 at all (although I'm not rushing to get it myself), why would people queue up?

    Everyone who has preordered will get their game, so coming down early to pick it up before work, where it will sit on your desk all day is pointless.

    Everyone who wants to save themselves a tenner will have ordered online. Some of whom will have found it falling into their letterbox yesterday, thanks to the vagaries of the Royal Mail ensuring that everyone had to ship it in plenty of time to avoid offending customers with a day-late delivery.

    The really rabid fanboys will no doubt have been exploiting either the Argos or Tesco slip-ups. Even if you're not lucky enough to have your Tesco slip up, finding a 24-hour supermarket willing to hand it over at midnight (and mostly at something like web prices) isn't hard, either.

    So who were all these people you expected to see queued outside Virgin at 8am?

  26. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Maybe their Xbox's are all broken?

  27. Ian Hunter

    I'm in shock and awe...

    I received my pre-ordered copy yesterday morning. I fired it up last night, and found a glorious looking menu screen. My anticipation levels crept up and up. Unfortunately, my 360 decided it was time to die, and flashed up the Red Ring of Death.

    So, I don't know if the game is good or not, but I will be able to post a full review in 'up to 25 days' - as the nice MS support chap said it could take for the machine to be repaired.


  28. Mike

    UK vs US

    Gamers in the UK just aren't as "fanboyish" towards the Xbox as their American counterparts. It's something I'm surprised Sony hasn't tried to capitalize on more with aggressive PS3 pricing and marketing.

  29. John Stag

    They bought a Wii...

    What novelty does this bring to a saturated market?

    The Wii on the other hand...hasn't lost sight of what a "game" is - it's about playing.

  30. Nigel Wright

    It's just a video game!

    Good grief! it's just a video game and certainly not worthy of headline news on BBC tv as it appeared last night.

    People who feel they have to queue in the early hours to get a copy really ought to get out more, get a life and, get some perspective. Me? I'd much rather be at home under the duvet with my girlfriend or getting some real thrills by thrashing a fast motorcycle on the Queen's highways whilst breaking every traffic regulation I can get away with.

    And of course it will be cheaper in a month or two.

  31. Chad H.

    Ho Hum

    Wow. Generic Shooter number 3's launch didnt go well.

    Maybe its because, at the end of the day, its just an average FPS. Nothing special here. No new concepts, or gameplay additions from the old move and shoot forumla.

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Halo 3.1417

    I was involved in the launch of Halo 3 by selling it at midnight in Aus.

    For our area, the turnout was actually bigger than the launch of the 360 console itself and some of the people had actually bought a console merely to play Halo 3. But considering the Oz crowds will ALWAYS buy something simply because of the marketing, look at sales of Colin McRae Dirt vs Need for Speed. Enter The Matrix vs....well I really could mention any game, it really was crap.

    The next day a couple of the guys who had bought it at midnight came into the shop, it had taken them until 8 that morning to finish the game on the hardest level.

    Ok, I'm not a pure console gamer, I like the flexibility and power of a PC, but I know that the 360 is capable of a LOT more than Halo gave out.

    Also, 8 hours of gameplay on the hardest difficulty? seems like a bit of a gyp, I know I won't bother borrowing someone's copy until all the fuss has died down.

    In a positive note, CO-OP MODE IS BACK! I loved to play co-op back in the days of Doom and Duke3d, but since the world went deathmatch mad only a few games have bothered with it, especially in the shooter world. It's nice to see a bit of coolness salvaged and at least the game kicks the arse of Quake Enemy Terriotory (or it's demo anyways).

    Add to this, the fact that the game had already been leaked and I can understand the UK's non-turnout.

  33. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Thats probably because....

    you can already get the torrent..... why wait in the rain??!

  34. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    FPS on console.

    No thanks.

  35. Paul Charters

    It's a game!

    Halo 3 is just a game at the end of the day. It'll be available at the end of the working/school day and people can go buy it then.

    They could also be waiting until after payday, which is traditionally the last Friday of the month, before picking it up.

    The 'midnight launch' push that so many companies try to do in the UK are just pointless. Now that everyone in the UK has realised that they won't be one of the first to play and that the US gets EVERYTHING earlier, and that full reviews, spoilers and walkthroughs will be available before the UK shops even get hold of the game (Bioshock, anyone?) there isn't a big rush to be one of the first any more.

    It's like TV series - they wonder why so many people download TV programmes's because there is no valid reason for the release dates in the UK to be the same as the US.

  36. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    No comments yet?

    Well, I suppose it stands to reason. Anyone wanting to vehemently defend Halo 3 will most likely be at home on a day off playing it...

  37. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Not queuing up?

    Not really surprising, straw polling the office, many people have had this on pre-order since March, so why would they buy a second copy at the shops in the middle of the night?

  38. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Frankly if I'm going to up at midnight, and not at home, then I'm going to be in a pub.

  39. One Van

    $1Billion and counting...

    ... is tidy sum to spend to create you own market share. M$ need to sell as many games as possible to break even, let alone make a profit.

    I sold my XBOX 360 after realising that most of the games come out for my PC at $25 dollars eventually. You can even play Halo ;)

  40. Ramzi Yakob


    To be honest - the whole idea of standing outside a shop for hours before a midnight launch seems pretty ridiculous to me.

    Take a game like Team Fortress 2 - absolutely fantastic game - available to download and play through Steam even before it has been released officially. I paid $49 for the Orange Box even though the only game I was interested in was Team Fortress 2. And I did it from the comfort of my own home.

    Waiting in the wet and the cold is yesterday's news when it comes to proper gamers - those who are clued up wait in front of their monitors looking at their broadband connection download a 5 gig game in 2 hours whilst making themselves some pasta and putting their feet up.


    Ramzi Yakob

  41. Stephen Nicol

    Hype does not a good game make

    The Halo series has always been an average shooter title. It can never hope to live up to PC classics such as Quake or even Doom and has done nothing exciting to move the genre forward.

    I for one have tried so hard to get into Halo & Halo 2 but find them to be a mere distraction when I have nothing else to do. A bit like watching the umpteenth rubbish Steven Seagal movie on a rainy Sunday afternoon.

    Bioshock and Gears of War were far more entertaining and provided something new to the shooter genre.

    I hope Halo 3 will prove me wrong but like the first two in the series I fear I will find myself bored after a days play and fire up Forza or GOW to find something more stimulating.............but then again it's been raining constantly so I might find myself stuck with the Steven Seagal of games...........argghhhh.

    Please Halo 3 prove me wrong.

  42. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Halo 3 - Better than expected.

    I bought Halo 3 expecting to be disappointed as I did not like the first two. It has a slightly boring single player game (with an incredibly vague plot - made even more difficult because I didn't play Halo 2). The cooperative is passable (it gets better as you get further through the game) but multiplayer deathmatch is excellent and has more than enough game modes to keep it interesting.

    As a side note I have Gears of War, and whilst the graphics may be slightly better in GOW I would say that Halo 3 is far more enjoyable in the deathmatch style games. I just feel the levels are better thought out and balanced. I have only played this with friends locally on one xbox so it might be different online.

  43. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Sorry, I was one of the "suckers"/"fans" that pre-ordered the Legendary Edition, and waited for the post to deliver it. I just can't see the point in queueing when GAME etc will quite happily deliver it, (I know I'm lazy!).

    Also, since I refuse to be forced (by "Games for Windows") to buy a new PC to run Vista (barf, puke, retch,....) I've got the version for the Xbox360, (and apologies if some out there figure I'm a hopeless Redmond fanboi as a result). Got to say that I'm pretty pleased with the extras, although the packaging round the helmet was pretty disintergrated, and there's one or two pieces of it rattling around in the helmet - I'll get those out when I can be bothered. The extra ("directors edition"?) disks were also pretty good, nice to see they put in Halo and Halo2 cinematics, rather than assume that everyone had played the previous editions. Oh, and I liked the "how to setup a network" piece, plus the behind-the-scenes on the music and sound effects, (yes, I'm that much of a nerd!)

    I've played Halo on the PC, but never (until now) on the console and I managed to miss out Halo2 completely. Again, it may get me lynched but - hype aside - I think it's actually a pretty good game. Okay, Bioshock may (or may not, I don't own that) have better graphics and there's others that I know probably have a better storyline.

    I'd count myself as a Halo novice, but I found the latest one actually pretty enjoyable to get into. Okay I've only had about 90 minutes solid play, but it seems to have a relatively shallow learning curve. And I'm not really bothered if the experienced players can complete the single player in 5-8 hours - from the articles on the Bungie website the focus is on *multiplayer*. It'll be interesting - once I get tired of playing Medal Of Honor: Airborne - to see how quickly I can go through H3, and then see whether I can get some reasonable online play, (when I played the beta I think I was in the group marked "Cannon Fodder" and it'd be nice to have a game that lasted longer than 3-4 minutes).

    I'd recommend that it was in any self-respecting XBox360 gamers collection, (along with Gears Of War of course), but I don't think it'd be one to get if you could only get one Xbox game.

    Meanwhile, I think I feel the need for an extended Call Of Duty session.... ;-)

  44. chris

    HALO 3 far better than expected.

    So I did not wait in long lines for my copy, yet I did reserve it. I have owned an XBOX and last year decided to get the 360. I never purchased the previous Halo's. I saw them and really did not find the graphics that stellar. The primary reason I decided to make my most recent purchase was: Technology. I have seen older mediocre XBOX titles get transformed to vivid works of art.

    Now i know there have been other titles that you can not tell the difference. But faith has helped me once again.

    From the start of the game I knew I was in for a treat. Even the loading screen is a masterpiece. I read the comment about it being similar to "Unreal Tournament". I think that you can say all FPS' are similar. What I find stands out is the storyline . Ya it's cart blanch. And no matter how you play as long as you get through you'll move forward. But I find that the details in the ships, vehicles, The Prophet, even the Master Chief have definitely made me happy with my purchase.

    And yes............... I have been up for six days playing Halo 3. ;-)

This topic is closed for new posts.

Other stories you might like