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MS: No game is bigger than Halo

Predicts Star Wars: Episode 1-esque launch.

Microsoft has confidently proclaimed "no game is bigger than Halo" just hours before Bungie's last entry in the science fiction shooter series, Halo: Reach, goes on sale around the world.

The console manufacturer reckons the launch of Reach will be 2010's "biggest entertainment event", and likens it to the release of film Star Wars: Episode 1.

"When it comes to the size and scope of a franchise and especially the dedication of the fans, no game is bigger than Halo," said Phil Spencer, corporate vice president of Microsoft Game Studios.

"With Halo: Reach we're delivering on our promise to redefine blockbuster entertainment experiences and ultimately help make this year the biggest ever in Xbox history."

Halo: Reach will go on sale at tens of thousands of retailers around the world at a minute past midnight tonight.

In the UK HMV will open 70 stores to accommodate what it expects to be intense interest.

GAME's Westfield Shopping Centre store will hold an event beginning at 9.30pm.

Buried within a gushing press release are some interesting Halo-related statistics.

More than 2.7 million players played the Halo: Reach beta, which ran earlier this year, making it the largest console videogame beta test on record and more than triple the size of the Halo 3 beta.

To date, more than 34 million copies of Halo games have been sold worldwide, driving more than 3.3 billion hours of gameplay by people connected to Xbox LIVE.

But is it any good? Yes sir soldier. Oli absolutely loved it.