Halo: Reach multiplayer beta trailer debuts

New video shows Bungie shooter will offer assassinations and jetpacks; Spartans vs. Elites, Headhunter, Arena, and intense-looking Invasion mode also on display; full trailer inside.

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Though the Halo: Reach multiplayer beta is exactly two months away, an early peek is now available, courtesy of a new trailer from developer Bungie. Enclosed with last year's critically acclaimed best-seller Halo 3: ODST, the beta will apparently offer a wide variety of modes and new weapons included in this fall's sci-fi shooter.

Viewable below, the trailer showcases Halo: Reach's vastly improved graphics. The mayhem-filled clip also flaunts new items like jetpacks, as well as new options such as customizable weapon loadouts and assassination moves. Among the new modes showcased are Spartans vs. Elites, Headhunter, and the intense-looking Invasion mode, which sees massed teams of Spartans storming enemy positions with both air and ground support.

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First announced at the 2009 Electronic Entertainment Expo, Halo: Reach will depict some of the same events that took place in the novel Halo: The Fall of Reach by Eric Nylund. The book portrays the siege of the titular fortress planet by the Covenant, which preceded the events of the 2001 game Halo: Combat Evolved.

The game will follow a squad of six Master Chief-like Spartan soldiers as they try to protect Reach's human inhabitants from the Covenant's relentless onslaught. A source who has seen Halo: Reach firsthand described it to GameSpot as "Gears of War with Spartans" and "very bleak and violent." For more, check out GameSpot's preview from Microsoft's X10 event, held last month in San Francisco.

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