Kim: Halo 3 to be System Seller, Beta FactsFollowing the conclusion of the Halo 3 beta, Microsoft has chosen to release a number of stats concerning player participation. Since the beta launched in lackluster fashion because of the Crackdown issue on May 16 through to its conclusion, Microsoft reports that in excess of 820,000 unique participants racked up more than 12 million hours of online gameplay. “The participation in the Halo 3 beta was staggering,” said Shane Kim, corporate vice president of Microsoft Game Studios. “Witnessing such a great reaction to a small portion of the game has been inspiring. It’s a testament to the fervor and anticipation that surrounds Halo 3. We’re confident that on Sept. 25 Halo 3 will drive an unprecedented wave of new gamers to the Xbox 360 platform and Xbox Live.” From early September new Halo 3 merchandise will be released in the form of two Xbox 360 limited edition wireless controllers, designed by Spawn and McFarlane Toys creator Todd McFarlane, and an Xbox 360 limited edition wireless headset.