Halo 3 is the third game in the popular Halo series developed by Bungie Studios. Halo 3 also holds the record for the highest grossing opening day in entertainment history, making $170 million in its first twenty four hours on sale. An upscaled version of this title was later re-released as part of Halo: The Master Chief Collection on the Xbox One.
Halo 3 is a first person shooter game which contains elements of vehicular combat and melee combat. Players also have the ability to dual-wield, where he forgoes grenades for a pair of weapons. Most of the weapons are from the two previous games of the Halo series, Halo: Combat Evolved and Halo 2. If a player takes a secondary weapon the secondary weapon will be stored and shown on the character's back (for larger, two-handed weapons) or on a leg holster (for smaller, one-handed weapons) making it impossible to hide a powerful weapon to surprise enemies. Enemy AI also has non-combat behaviours to make them feel more alive and realistic. Each type of enemy exhibits a distinct style.
Halo 3 introduces "support weapons" and new equipment to the Halo series. Support weapons are often weapons mounted on an emplacement with heavier firepower and unlimited ammo. The player can rip the weapons off of the mount and use them, but he must give up some combat options and his speed will be reduced significantly. There are four support weapons the machine gun turret, the plasma turret, the missile pod, and a Flamethrower. The equipment is a new item class in Halo 3, items have various effects and functions ranging from defensive effects, objects which blind or confuse the enemy, or items that can actually harm and defeat. A player can only carry one equipment item at a time and equipment items can be destroyed on the battlefield by gunfire and explosives.
In the campaign mode the player assumes the role of Master Chief. Hidden throughout the campaign levels are several "Marathon Terminals," named after the plot-driving terminals found throughout the Marathon campaign. Accessing these terminals offers cryptic text messages from within the Halo Universe. There is also a campaign scoring mode called the "meta-game", in which a player is awarded a numerical score based on their performance while completing a level in the campaign. Points are obtained defeating enemies, with extra points being awarded for stylish moves such as headshots, finding and activating Skulls, with multipliers given for progressing through a level quickly. In co-op mode, players can lose points for accidentally committing suicide, dying, or killing a cooperative team-mate. Players are awarded gamerscore points for successfully reaching a certain score in each level, and medals are awarded for specific accomplishments.
The Cooperative play of Halo 3 supports up to four player. Originally Bungie confirmed Co-Op play on a system with two player split screen. For plot reasons, instead of having each player be an identical Spartan as in previous Halo games, the first player plays as Master Chief, the second player plays as the Arbiter and the other two players play as Covenant Elites named N'tho 'Sraom and Usze 'Taham, each with their own backstories. Each player has identical abilities, but the Arbiter and his Elites have different starting weapons from Master Chief.
In the Multiplayer mode, up to four people can participate in multiplayer match on a single Xbox 360 in Halo 3 via a split screen layout and up to sixteen may participate in a single match over a LAN or Xbox Live. The game also supports a combination of LAN, Xbox Live or split screen. The game uses the TrueSkill ranking system for its online matchmaking facilities which is based on skill and experience that is determined by Rating Points. The player obtains one point for each win in the online and loses two points for each game he quits. The player can choose from 9 different multiplayer gametypes: Assault, Capture the Flag, King of the Hill, Oddball, Juggernaut, Slayer, Territories, VIP, and Infection. Assault is a game where the objective is to deliver a bomb into the enemy's base. Capture the Flag is a game where the player must steal the enemies' flag and bring it back to a pre-determined area. King of the Hill is a game where the player attempts to stay on a hill for the longest period of time to win. In Oddball the player must find a skull and hold it for the greatest amount of time. Juggernaut is a game where the goal is to kill as many people as you can if you are the juggernaut, and to kill the juggernaut if you are not. Slayer is a free for all game mode in which the player must kill as many of his opponents as possible. Territories is a game mode where player battle for control of the map. VIP is a game where each team is assigned a "VIP" which they must protect while trying to kill the other team's VIP. Infection is a game where the human team attempts to stay alive while the zombie team tries to infect the human team or kill them. Players are also able to customize their own games. Player can also customize their characters with Character permutations which can be unlocked by playing the campaign mode.
- Forge, a tool that allows the players to place weapons, items, and vehicles on an existing map
- Saved Films allows players to save and replay videos and screenshots. Saved films can be shared online.
- Character permutations allows the player to play with a different skin other than Master Chief. The different permutations have no effect on gameplay.
- Online File Share allows the player to share Saved Films, screenshots, custom gametypes and Forge settings.
- Support weapons and new equipment
Halo 3 is set in the year 2553, during a bitter struggle between humanity and a collective of alien races known as the Covenant. The game takes place after Halo: Uprising which bridges the story gap between the ending of Halo 2, and the beginning of Halo 3. Covenant loyalists (Brutes, Drones, Jackals, Hunters, and Grunts), led by the Prophet of Truth, have laid waste to most of the planet. Covenant ships are hovering over an excavation site a few miles from the ruins of New Mombasa and have uncovered a large artifact. The game starts with in the African Jungle with the screen on the sky during nighttime with Cortana describing why she chose to be with Master Chief. Cortana narrates that the UNSC let her choose to be with any SPARTAN and after doing research she picked Master Chief because he had luck. While Cortana is narrating this, a fireball comes towards the screen and crashes.
A group of marines lead by Sergeant Johnson discovers that the fireball was Master Chief who fell two kilometers. They inspect Master Chief and discover that his armor is locked up. After trying to search for signs of life on Master Chief, Sergeant Johnson takes Cortana's chip out of Master Chief's helmet and tells a marine to radio for VTOL, heavy lift gear to transport Master Chief away, but Master Chief suddenly gets up and takes back the chip from Sergeant Johnson. Johnson ask Master Chief where Cortana is and Master Chief tells him that she stayed behind. Master Chief then suddenly looks around, grabs a pistol and uncloaks an Covenant Elite by putting the pistol to his mandibles. Johnson tells Master Chief that the Arbiter is with them and Master Chief hesitantly lowered his gun. The Arbiter explains that there are brutes who have their scent and that they must leave. Johnson then gives Master Chief an assault rifle.
They walk into the forest and a marine discovers an enemy phantom dropship about to land. Sergeant Johnson tells Master Chief to go with the Arbiter and head towards the river and they will meet up at the landing site. They progress through the area, securing landing zones for Pelican Dropships and defending them against enemy Banshees fighters and ground forces. The two Pelicans try to land but get shot down by Banshees. Then Master Chief's HUD flickers and experience disturbing broken transmissions from Cortana for a moment and disappears. A marine then tells him his vitals pinged KIA for a moment.
Master Chief and Johnson escapes from the African jungle and lands in an underground UNSC base. The meet up with Commander Keyes on a Pelican and she tells them that the Covenant destroyed most of their ships. They then go to the command center where they meet with Lord Hood in a transmission. They discover that the Prophet of Truth was after the Ark, which he will use to activate all the Halo Rings and destroy the universe. Shortly after they reach their destination, the Covenant jams the communications and interrupts Lord Hood with a message from the Prophet of Truth. Keyes orders the UNSC to evacuate the outpost as the Covenant mounts an attack on it. Lord Hood tells them to clear a way into the African city of Voi, and destroy all anti-air Covenant defenses in preparation for an all-out assault on Truth and the artifact. As the troops retreat from the outpost, Miranda Keyes activates a bomb that was placed in the operating room which goes off in the base. All the remaining troops and Master Chief escape to the garage of the base.
He then makes his way to the Tsavo Highway which is blockaded by Covenant Loyalists. After making his way through the Tsavo Highway Master Chief and the UNSC makes their way to the Ark, a massive and ancient Forerunner artifact.
The UNSC sends a Warthog convoy to destroy the Covenant Loyalist anti-aircraft defenses that surround the Ark to allow Lord Hood's small fleet of ships passage to the Covenant's ships. On the ground, UNSC troops lead by Master Chief makes their way through warehouses and factories in the industrial zone of Voi, fighting Covenant forces and Armor. After making his way through the industrial area of Voi, Master Chief meets up with a brigade Mongoose ATVs to secure a landing site for the UNSC. But they immediately engages in combat with Brute Choppers, Anti-Air Wraith tanks, and Ghosts which are reinforced by Phantom dropships from the Covenant Loyalist. Above them Hornets and Banshees engage in a dogfight for control. After securing a landing site the UNSC Marines were attacked by a scarab. After destroying the scarab the UNSC forces make their way to a Brute controlled warehouse. With reinforcements from The Arbiter, Sergeant Johnson and volunteer civilians from a nearby factory, the UNSC was able to take control of the Anti Aircraft site allowing UNSC airforces to freely move through.
After the Master Chief and the Arbiter destroy the defenses, The Prophet of Truth activates the artifact and creates an enormous slipspace portal. As the UNSC ships prepare to attack the Covenant ships, they ships retreat in the space portal. As the humans regroup their forces, an infected Covenant ship controlled by the Flood arrives by slipspace and crash-lands nearby. The Flood quickly spreads throughout the city, infecting and killing UNSC forces. Lord Hood orders Master Chief and the Arbiter to overload the crashed cruiser's engines, which wipes out the entire city and the Flood with it. With the aid of an Elite fleet, Master Chief and the Arbiter was able to defeat the Flood.
After defeating the flood, Keyes, Master Chief, the Arbiter, and the Elite fleet decide to follow Truth. The UNSC forces use the slipspace portal and find themselves near an immense artificial structure, which later is revealed to be the Ark. They find out that the Ark is located outside of the Milky Way galaxy. 343 Guilty Spark arrives by an Elite dropship to aid Master Chief in any way he can, since he has no more pre-programmed duties because his ring has been destroyed. The Chief and the Arbiter decide to kill the Prophet of Truth who is protected by a shield. While making their way to deactivate the shield they encounter a large Covenant force with two Scarabs. Master Chief and the Arbiter team up with the Flood to fight off the Covenant and stop the rings from being activated.
Meanwhile Sergeant Johnson gets captured by a Brute Chieftain and is held by the neck. Johnson attempts to taunt the Brute Chieftain to kill him, but the Prophet stops the Brute. Suddenly Keyes crashes a Pelican into the window and comes out with a shot gun attempting to save Johnson. Keyes gets surrounded by Brutes and shoots some of them with the shotgun. The Prophet of Truth tells her that she can't kill them all. Keyes points a pistol at Johnson and gets shot with several spiker shots by Truth. With the guidance of Guilty Spark, Master Chief and the Arbiter deactivate the shield and push their way to the control room of the Ark, where they manage to stop the Prophet of Truth from activating the rings. Sergeant Johnson tells Master Chief to stop the rings and then he lifts Commander Keyes body into the Pelican and flies off. The Arbiter then executes the Prophet of Truth with an energy sword. The flood then betrays Master Chief and The Arbiter and they get attacked by tentacles of the Gravemind.
A flood-infested High Charity, a previously mobile capital city of the Covenant arrives by slipspace. The Arbiter and the Master Chief discover that a replacement ring has been constructed by the Ark to replace the one destroyed by Master Chief. The Chief decides to activate the ring to destroy any chances the Flood have from spreading even further. They go to High Charity to rescue Cortana, who was previously captured by the Gravemind. When Master Chief finds Cortana, he retrieves the activation index from Installation 04, the first Halo ring destroyed by Master Chief. Master Chief puts Cortana into a chip and they destroy the Covenant city as they make their escape, apparently killing part of the Gravemind in the process.
Sergeant Johnson, Master Chief and the Arbiter go to Installation 00, the newly built halo ring and attempt to activate the ring. In the Installation, Master Chief is attacked by groups of flood controlled by the Gravemind. After opening the control room door for Master Chief, 343 Guilty Spark realizes that this will destroy his new ring because it is not fully ready yet and kills Sergeant Johnson before he activates the ring. The Master Chief destroys Guilty Spark, activates the ring, and barely manages to escape with the Arbiter using a warthog with Master Chief as the driver and the Arbiter as the gunner. The Warthog jumps on to a UNSC ship called Forward Unto Dawn.
On the ship, the Arbiter runs to pilot the ship as Master Chief uploads Cortana to the ship and guides it out towards the slipspace portal located above the Ark. The firing mechanism in the Installation destroys both that Halo and the Ark, as well as launching the pulse that destroys sentient life, eradicating the Flood. Master Chief clings to the ship as the explosion pulls a Warthog and a Scorpion tank out of the ship and in to space. The front half the ship makes it through the portal with the Arbiter, while the second half of the ship with Master Chief floats in space, having made it through the portal just as it collapsed. As the second half of the ship drifts in space, Cortana sends out a tracking beacon, while Master Chief puts himself in a cryogenic chamber and tells Cortana to wake him when he is needed.
In March of 2553, on earth, a monument is dedicated to the war and all those who have fallen during the war. A memorial is held by Lord Hood on a hillside which is left to remain barren as a dedication to those who have fallen. After Lord Hood makes a speech, the soldiers do a gun salute. It is shown that the Arbiter crashed the section of the Dawn on to Earth and that Master Chief never returned. The Arbiter attends the memorial service pledges his friendship with humanity as they and Lord Hood tells the Arbiter that it is hard to believe that Master Chief is dead. The Arbiter then answers cryptically, "Were it so easy," and leaves for his homeworld. The numbers 117 is carved on the memorial. A section of the Dawn is seen after an unknown period of time drifting towards what resembles the night side of a planet covered with a network of city lights.
Halo 3 was first previewed in E3 2006 with the trailer "Finish the fight". The Halo 3 engine was built off of the Halo 2 modified Havok engine. The improved engine uses High Dynamic Range, global lighting, real-time reflections and depth of field effects. The new lighting effects enabled real-time reflections and casting of real-time shadows from the dynamic objects on to the environment.
The objects used normal, bump, and parallax mapping to give surfaces more detail without dramatically increasing the number of polygons. The draw distance of the game is in excess of ten miles (sixteen km). Water effects were visually and physically improved to cause refractions and splashes when a character interacts with the water. Foliage in the game is physically reactive and some may be destroyable. The foliage will react to wind, bullets, and explosions.
Halo 3 fully supports 5.1 surround sound audio and contains over 50,000 pieces of audio, with nearly 40,000 of those being NPC dialogue. Separate recordings have been made for nearby and distant gunfire to make for a more believable sound experience.
On March 16, 2007 Microsoft and Bungie announced the prices for Halo 3, its Legendary edition, and its Limited edition. The announcement included details of each edition of Halo 3. The standard edition is set to be $59.99.
On April 10, 2007 Bungie released a documentary on Halo 3 multiplayer. It show the map design of Halo 3 multiplayer and new features such as the man cannon and the ability to replay in slow motion.
On May 16, 2007 the release date for Halo 3 was announced to be September 26, 2007
On August 29, 2007 Bungie announced that Halo 3 has gone gold.
Target gave away two free ActionClix figures for any preorder of Halo 3.
On November 15, 2006, Bungie Studios announced that the public beta test would be available in Spring 2007, with the full game coming out sometime afterwards in that year. They also provided new Halo 2 maps exclusively for Xbox 360 owners. The first segment of beta testing closed on January 24, 2007 and then Microsoft confirms that every copy of Crackdown will contain an invite to the Halo 3 beta. On April 11, 2007 Microsoft announced that beta testing will begin at 1 p.m. GMT (5 a.m. PDT) on May 16, and will end on June 7 at 7:59 a.m. Bungie announced that on April 2, 2007 all copies of Crackdown did not have invitations to the beta testing, and that a patch was needed for it. As compensation for those with Crackdown, Microsoft pushed the beta closing time 3 days further. The Beta only has 3-4 multiplayer maps and will not contain any campaign data. The beta ended on June 10, 2007 at 11:59 p.m. PDT.
In Microsoft's press conference of E3 2006, Microsoft showed a trailer which ends with the tagline "Finish the fight". In the trailer, the Master Chief is seen holding a new MA5C assault rifle, an upgraded version of the MA5B rifle used in Halo: Combat Evolved. He walks towards the space elevator where Covenant dropships are headed.
On December 4, 2006, a sixty second CGI commercial for Halo 3 was aired on ESPN, followed by a release on Xbox.com and Xbox LIVE. The commercial starts with two children wondering whether they will ever meet beings from "up there". The scene then changes to Master Chief waking from unconsciousness on Earth, in the middle of the Covenant invasion. The scene shows him using a Bubble shield to block a mortar shot. The Chief then engages the brutes below and the scene ends with "HALO 3", "FINISH THE FIGHT - 2007".
At E3 2007 a promotional video titled "A Hero Must Rise" was shown. The video featured cutscenes from the game. The video begins with a black screen with the voice of Prophet of truth making a speech. During his speech, scenes of Covenant warships descending and attacking planet and Brutes attacking Marines. It is followed by images of Master Chief fighting back, sometimes alongside the Arbiter, and large scale vehicular battles. There is also a brief cameo of Miranda Keyes, swinging both her pistol and shotgun defensively to protect herself, and Cortana collapsing in pain before Master Chief, the Arbiter, a Forerunner "Monitor" and another unknown Elite. Another shot reveals Master Chief grabbing the Arbiter, holding a pistol between his mandibles. In yet another scene, the Forerunner ship can be seen on Earth in the background. The battles intensify to the point of brutal space battles and even a Scarab being utterly destroyed. Vehicles such as the Brute Chopper, the Hornet, and a Warthog variant was previewed in the trailer.
Three Live action videos directed by Neill Blomkamp were made depicting the Halo universe in a live action setting. The videos were made with a collaboration between Weta Workshop, Neill Blomkamp, Origami Digital LLC, and Bungie Studios. The videos features two ODST Bravo-21 (T. Rymarr) and Bravo-22 (S. Hartley).
The first live action Halo 3 video was titled Halo 3: Arms Race and was shown during E3 2007. It features live action and CGI scenes of UNSC Marines arming themselves as Pelicans and Warthogs were being manufactured in preparation to "Finish the Fight"
The second live action video titled Halo: Combat was released on August 28, 2007. The video features United Nations Space Command Defense Force and Orbital Drop Shock Troopers fighting across a wasteland, being engaged by Covenant Loyalist Brutes armed with Spikers and Banshees. The ODSTs had a Warthog delivered to them under fire by a Pelican and attempted to escape, but a Spiker round penetrated the windscreen and wounded the passenger, leading the Warthog to crash into a wall at which point the video ends. The video was 1:33 minutes long.
The third short video titled Halo: Last One Standing was unveiled on September 24, 2007 on the Discovery Channel's website. The video continues where the previous video left off, the two ODSTs are traveling in a Warthog with a salvaged Spartan Laser. One of them is wounded with a Spiker round and is directed to a bunker where the injured soldier is treated by a combat medic. He uses the Spartan Laser targeting system to obtain landing coordinates for the vehicle that Master Chief is using to return to the planet's surface. Meanwhile, a platoon of Brutes skirmish with several marines. A Brute spiker rifles pin a marine to the wall by his arm and a spike grenade is hurled at a marine and sticks to a wall, but the marine rips it off and hurls it a passing Banshee, destroying it. The uninjured ODST goes on to snipe down several brutes before a Brute Chieftain wielding a gravity hammer violently kills the ODST. At the end, with the landing coordinates secured and several casualties inflicted on the UNSC, the recovery team retreats into the bunker and uses a rocket launcher to defeat the charging Brute Chieftain.
After E3 2006, Bungie made a video which they discuss the challenges they faced in producing Halo 3, as well as offering commentary on what was shown from the perspective of a viewer. There are also several shots of different angles of the area shown in the E3 2006 trailer.
On December 20, 2006 Bungie released a video titled "Et tu, Brute?" which was a documentary on the redesign of the brutes and the classes of the covenant. The AI has also been updated to incorporate the new idea of a Brute pack where they attack in a group. The video also shows new gameplay elements such as Spike grenades and dual wielding of the energy swords.
On April 10, 2007 a video titled "Is Quisnam Protero Damno!" which show the multiplayer aspect of Halo 3 was released. The documentary showed items such as the bubble shield, tripmine, and portable gravity lift and how they were used in gameplay. Bungie also featured saving played games to be later viewed and showing the Man Cannon which was a gravitational lift to help players travel across the map.
A ViDoc titled "Cinema Paradiso" was released on September 20, 2007. It shows how the camera controls on the replay feature of Halo 3. It shows that you can see what people saw in the third person perspective and follow them or use a orbiting cam. The forge feature was also featured. It showed how people can manipulate maps by replacing items, vehicles, spawn points, and objects.
A series of videos directed by Rupert Sanders with a massive diorama called the "The John-117 Monument" over twelve thousand square feet in size and over twelve feet tall, with handcrafted human and Covenant figures each standing eight to twelve inches high. The set and vehicles were built by New Deal Studios and the figures were supplied by Stan Winston Studio. The diorama was large enough to fill an entire studio. On September 14, 2007 an video titled "The Making Of" was released which features how the diorama was made. The video explained how the "The John-117 Monument" was made and that it was housed in the Museum of Humanity. It describes that the Monument was started in the year 2607 and used boot camp scans of marines which were in the battle and recovered corpse of covenant soldiers. On September 24, 2007, at the Best Buy location of the Halo 3 launch party, figurines from the diorama were being given away as prizes
Microsoft also launched a special "Believe" website, allowed people to explore the diorama freely, and use a camera icon to take their own pictures of the diorama to create wallpaper screenshots with the Halo 3 logo. Special "hotspots" contained information and 3D models of various combatants, personal accounts of the battle from individual soldiers, and videos.
The first video titled "The Museum" debuted on September 11, 2007 and appeared on television on September 14th. The video features Maj. Pawel Czernek, a surviving combatants who fought in The Battle of New Mombasa in the The Museum of Humanity. Czernek explains his role in the battle while examining a diorama of the battle in a glass case. He tells the audience that he was in the back of a overturned warthog firing a M41. He describes that Master Chief gave the Marines hope in the battle. The video ended the word "BELIEVE" on a black screen.
The second video titled "Believe" features a camera sweeping across the battlefield showing the action to the audience with the piano melody of Frédéric Chopin's Raindrop Prelude (Op. 28, Prelude No. 15 in D-flat major) playing. The video then showed Master Chief being held in the air by a Brute Chieftain in the middle of the battle depicted in the diorama. The Master Chief is then suddenly animated briefly, as he activates a plasma grenade in his hand, and raised his head towards the camera. The scene faded to black, it ended with the words: "BELIEVE IN A HERO" A special extended 90 second version appeared on Xbox.com on September 14, 2007, featuring more specific incidents and violence during the battle. The video also differed in that it just said "BELIEVE" at the end.
The third video titled "Hunted" was released September 22, 2007 and features Lt. John Tippett in a forest area being interviewed about his experiences during the war. He describes that Master Chief was unable to rendezvous with his platoon until later and his men were forced to 'Go Dark'(remove any electronic, equipment and any thing that will give away their position) because they were being hunted by the Brutes. For seven hours they sat waited for Master Chief to arrive. The video ended the word "BELIEVE" on a black screen.
The fourth video titled "Enemy Weapon" was released on September 22, 2007 and features two retired Marines, Maj. Roland Huffmann, a sniper, and Sgt. Tomas Navarro, who used a shotgun, inside the Museum of Humanity explaining weapons. Hoffman examines the Covenant Type-25 Carbine weapon and explains that it was called the "Spiker" and that it was used by the Brutes as a handgun. Huffmann stated with some disbelief, "If you had told me a couple years ago we'd be here in this place talking about this, I would say 'No way, not gonna happen...' If there's one reason why we're here, I would say it's the Chief." The video ended the word "BELIEVE" on a black screen.
The fifth video titled Gravesite was dated to appear on October 1, 2007 but appeared on October 8, 2007. The video was an interview with Lieutenant Niraj Shah at a previous battlefield site. Shah finds a sniper shell and describes that there was a ceremony held here for Master Chief who is M.I.A.
The Halo 3: Limited edition includes the making of Halo 3 and a Halo fiction and art book. It is packaged in a metallic case. There will also be a Halo Collectors Source Guide that provides information about the factions and storyline. The price for the Limited edition is set at $69.99.
The Legendary Edition of Halo 3 is priced at $129.99. There is storyboard art, two bonus discs with the game, the first of which will include both a high-def 'Making of Halo 3' documentary and an audio-visual calibration tool. The second disc, exclusive to the Legendary Edition, will include remastered cinematic material from the first two volumes in the Halo series with developer commentary, Red vs. Blue, and This Spartan Life. It also comes with a model of the MJOLNIR Mark VI helmet.
On July 31st 2007, Pepsi-Cola announced a new variant of Mountain Dew called Game Fuel. It is a limited edition citrus-cherry flavored drink. Eight fluid ounces of Game Fuel contains 48 milligrams of caffeine, 120 calories, 45 milligrams of sodium, 31 grams of carbohydrates, no fat, no protein, and no significant source of other vital nutrients. The packaging ties in with Halo 3, sporting images of the Master Chief. A Slurpee version of Game Fuel has also been developed and sold at Seven Elevens with three collectible Slurpee cups. Following the release of the game fuel was a commercial which was released on the same day. The commercial features people in different countries playing Halo 3 on Xbox Live and screaming "no!" in their native languages. At the end it shows an man saying "yes" as he takes a sip of Mountain Dew Game Fuel.
A Halo 3 inspired Zune developed in partnership with Bungie was announced at a Halo 3 event in May 2007. The Halo 3 Zune comes in either dark brown or black, and features a Halo symbol on the back. Both versions are pre-loaded with Halo content, including a custom episode of the popular series Red vs. Blue and were designed to feel like something from that came from the game. The Halo 3 Zunes can be purchased only at Gamestop.
A Halo 3 edition of the Xbox 360 was released on September 16th, which contains a wired Halo 3 headset, a twenty gigabyte hard drive along with the standard cabling of the Pro package as well as an HDMI port. It is priced at $399.99USD.
Halo 3 set records for pre-orders, topping the one million mark.
From September 25 through September 30, 2007, Microsoft offered free downloadable content exclusively for Xbox Live Gold members. The content includes Halo 3 dashboard theme and gamerpics. (Available September 25, 2007.), Inside Bungie: "Halo 3 – The Story" video (Available September 27, 2007.), and Inside Bungie: "Halo 3 – New Features" video(Available September 28, 2007.) The first video was an interview with the Bungie team that developed Halo 3 and the second video was the about the Halo 3 game features.
Burger King announced a special promotion starting September 24, 2007 in which Master Chief, the Halo 3 logo, and the new "Believe" slogan would appear on large cups and French Fry wrappers.
Microsoft will also be sponsoring the #40 car driven by David Stremme for Chip Ganassi Racing in the Dover 400 Nextel Cup Series. The car will have a Halo 3 inspired paint job featuring the title for the game printed prominently on the hood and rear bumper, as well large pictures of Master Chief on each of the rear fenders.
Pontiac announced a sweepstakes with a Halo 3-branded Pontiac G6 GXP Street and being the first to play the game on an IMAX screen as prizes.
BD&A issued specialized Halo 3 licensed carrying cases and bags with the Halo 3 logo set to be released on September 25, 2007, the day of launch. They released the Halo 3 SPNKr Missile Case and the Halo 3 Console Bag. The missile case can carry four discs, a Xbox 360 controller and a headset. The Console bag can carry several disc, a Xbox 360 and several controllers.
Halo 3 has received critical acclaim from critics. On the first day of launch, Halo 3 made $170 million USD generated more money in twenty four hours than any other American entertainment property ever. The game also drew over a million Xbox Live members to play online in the first 20-hours, making it the biggest day for Xbox Live gaming in history. The game was praised for its level design, plot, environment, and graphics. The combat system is smooth and well polished. The game runs on the Havok engine and features stunning graphics such as reflection of the environment off of Master Chief's visor.
- GameSpot: 9.5 of 10
- IGN: 9.5 of 10
- MetaCritic: 96
- Game Rankings: 95
- GameSpy 5 of 5
- 1UP.com: 10 of 10
- Edge: 10 of 10
- Eurogamer: 10 of 10
- Game Informer: 9.75 of 10
- GameTrailers: 9.8 of 10
- Famitsu: 37 of 40
- Kotaku: 87.5%
- Official Xbox Magazine:10 of 10
- On September 22, 2007 Jack Thompson tried to declared Halo 3 a public nuisance in Florida which would have had the Florida court forbid its sale.
- Initial batches of the Limited Edition came in a DVD case that was prone to scratching disk. Some sources claimed that close to one in two copies were scratched to the point of unplayability.
Halo 3 was also criticized for the fact that saved film footage does not rewind well.
- Halo 3.com
- Halo 3 on Bungie's site
- Believe Halo 3 monument
- Halo 3 on Halopedia
- Halo 3 Manual at Microsoft
- Halo 3 on Xbox.com
- Halo 3 on Wikipedia
- Halo 3 Custom Match Finder
- Xbox.com's link to Halo 3 videos and wallpapers
- Halo 3 Announcement Trailer
- Halo 3 Trailer 2
- Halo 3 E3 2007 trailer