Gears of War 3 stomps 3 million in first week

Epic Games' Xbox 360-exclusive third-person shooter goes triple platinum in seven days as lifetime series sales eclipse $1 billion.

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Over the summer, Gears of War 3 designer Cliff Bleszinski said he hoped the third-person shooter would reach sales of over 6 million units in its lifetime. Just a week after launch, the gritty game is halfway there.

Marcus Fenix does his best Carnac the Magnificent impression.
Marcus Fenix does his best Carnac the Magnificent impression.

Microsoft today said the Xbox 360-exclusive Gears of War 3 has sold through more than 3 million units since its worldwide launch on September 20. Microsoft also trumpeted sales of the Gears of War series as a whole, revealing the blood-soaked franchise has hauled in more than $1 billion in lifetime sales.

Strong sales of Gears of War 3 come as little surprise. In May, Epic Games said 1.29 million gamers in 145 countries tried out the beta for the game, which ran from April 18 to May 15. At the same time, Microsoft confirmed Gears of War 3 reached 1 million preorders faster than any previous Xbox 360 exclusive, beating high-profile games Halo: Reach and Halo 3.

Gears of War 3 is primed to expand in November, with the release of the first of four expansion packs. If purchased separately, those packs will cost players 3,600 Microsoft points ($45). However, players can enlist for the long haul, purchasing a "Season Pass" to preorder all four packs at the discounted price of 2,400 Microsoft points ($30). In addition to the downloadable content add-ons, Season Pass holders will receive an exclusive "liquid metal weapon set."

Gears of War 3 begins with the last human city having been obliterated and series hero Marcus Fenix trying to protect the remaining humans from the Locust horde and from newer, deadlier foes: the mutating Lambent.

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