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Brier Dudley offers a critical look at technology and business issues affecting the Northwest.

October 10, 2007 at 5:52 PM

Watch out for The Orange Box, Halo3

Hot on Master Chief’s armored heels is The Orange Box, another blockbuster game from the wilds of the Eastside.

Bellevue’s Valve released the game on Tuesday and it’s already looking like one of the year’s top games on the Xbox 360, PC and PlayStation 3.

Valve isn’t sharing sales details, but spokesman Doug Lombardi said it’s the fastest selling title ever on Steam, the company’s PC game network.

The Orange Box includes the landmark Half-Life 2, two extensions of HL2, the multi-player Team Fortress 2 and Portal, a quirky single-player puzzle game.

From IGN’s review: “If there’s one must buy game of the year, it is, without a doubt, The Orange Box.”

I was a big Half-Life fan but had to cut back. After a few marathon sessions, I caught myself yearning for a crowbar when I walked by big air vents on buildings near the Times.

(In the game, you play a scientist who sometimes uses a crowbar to whack open vents and crawl in, hunting for aliens).

UPDATE: IGN called out Orange Box in its research newsletter yesterday. An excerpt, provided by analyst Nick Williams:

Based on the latest awareness and purchase intent data generated by visitors to IGN.com, we expect that the Xbox 360 version of The Orange Box will move between 750,000 and 850,000 units in the U.S. by the end of November, making it our fourth highest Xbox 360 projection of the year behind Madden NFL 08, BioShock, and Halo 3.

Williams said they projected Halo 3 would sell about 4 million units in its first two months, about five times what it expects for The Orange Box in its first two months, so Master Chief may actually have some breathing room.

Comments | Topics: Games & entertainment, Microsoft

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