Halo 3 is a huge media phenomenon, not just your average gaming hysteria... Its huge sales, that brought Microsoft and Bungie $170 million on the first day had a negative impact on all launches in that period, including those of movies and music albums. One of the victims of Bungie's blockbuster was "The Hearbreak Kid", Ben Stiller's latest movie, which cost $60 million to produce and only brought $14 million in the first weekend, instead of the predicted $20 million.
The problem is that audience of the game fits in the 18 to 34 year-old demographic, which basically covers most of the public of any media phenomenon trying to escape the Halo 3 mania unharmed. It can be called a true "Harry Potter" of all game launches, since we all know that a new chapter of the teenage wizard's adventures can instantly create a giant commotion.
Halo 3 has now sold over $300 million worth copies, leaving behind Spider-Man 3's (the movie) sales in a trail of dust. You should take into consideration that Peter Parker's latest adventure was the best-selling movie of the year and still it lags behind Halo 3. Maybe if you sum up all the cash brought by the entire Pirates of the Caribbean series plus games you'll get a decent comparison with Bungie's hit. Microsoft had seen this coming, as they've marketed their product like a movie, according to Josh Goldberg, product manager working for Halo 3's producer.
Master Chief's last stand also stormed into Xbox Live, considering that more than a third of its subscribers were reported playing Halo 3 online. Of course, the whole thing boosted the sales of the Xbox 360 consoles and the Halo collectibles, pumping up cash into a hungry industry that revolves around the final chapter of the acclaimed FPS trilogy.