Halo Wars goes gold, demo hits in just 13 days

The highly anticipated fourth Halo video game, Halo Wars, has gone gold.

Halo Wars.

Halo Wars.

The highly anticipated fourth Halo video game, Halo Wars, has gone gold Friday, meaning that the game has been finalized and shipped off to the manufacturing plant. Halo Wars will be released February 27, 2009 on Xbox 360, two years after Halo 3 came out. Microsoft has also announced that a playable demo will be released on Xbox Live in just 13 days.

The playable Halo Wars demo will include two full missions from the game's campaign and one multiplayer map.

Here's the official press release:

Genre Defining Xbox 360 Exclusive "Halo Wars" Goes Gold New video documentary series and Xbox LIVE demo details revealed

Microsoft Game Studios and Ensemble Studios announced today that "Halo Wars," the highly anticipated action strategy game based on the legendary "Halo" universe, is finished and sent to manufacturing! Created from the ground up for the Xbox 360 console and controller, "Halo Wars" combines a peerless control scheme and gameplay with an incredibly rich, epic story set 20 years prior to the story told in "Halo: Combat Evolved." The result is a commanding experience that is a must-have for "Halo" fans and a title that is sure to become a classic amongst fans of strategy games.

As fans eagerly await launch day, a video documentary series announced today will explore defining themes of "Halo Wars" and give viewers a behind the scenes look at the game's development and some of the people involved in its creation. The premier episode captures key elements that frame "Halo Wars" gameplay: the controls, perspective and strategy. The "Halo Wars" video documentary is available for download on Xbox LIVE and can be viewed at Xbox.com/Halo.

In addition, the recently announced Xbox LIVE public demo for "Halo Wars" will be available beginning on Feb. 5 at 2 a.m. PST in Xbox LIVE enabled regions worldwide. In the demo, players will be able master Ensemble's groundbreaking control scheme in optional beginner and advanced tutorials or jump right into the action to experience the beginning of the "Halo Wars" story with the first two campaign missions. The demo will also include "Chasms," one of "Halo Wars'" 14 multiplayer maps, wherein players can battle it out in Skirmish mode vs. A.I., playing either as the UNSC with Captain Cutter's leader powers, or as the Covenant with the Prophet of Regret's own unique abilities. Don't forget to set your Xbox to download this demo!

"Halo Wars" is rated T for Teen by the ESRB and 16+ PEGI, and will be available starting Feb. 26 in Asia, Feb. 27 in Europe and March 3 in the Americas. For more information, visit Xbox.com/Halo or HaloWars.com.

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