Justin Lee On September 21, 2011 at 1:00 pm

At the stroke of midnight last night, the blockbuster holiday season officially ignited with a bang, as “Gears of War 3” hit store shelves with more than 20,000 retailers worldwide marking the occasion with midnight madness events. At the blockbuster game’s marquee Canadian launch events in Toronto and Vancouver rabid fans flocked to the launch events to be among the first to experience the year’s highest-rated Xbox 360 exclusive.

“Today’s launch of ‘Gears of War 3’ kicks off the biggest holiday season of blockbuster games in the history of Xbox 360,” said Microsoft Corporate Vice President Phil Spencer. “The team at Epic Games has raised the bar yet again and we’re extremely excited to see fans around the world get their hands on the game and jump into the action.”

Featuring cinematic storytelling penned by New York Times bestselling author Karen Traviss, a campaign reviewers are calling “one of the most exciting on any system,” and a multiplayer experience that “feels more like four fully-formed and polished games3,”  “Gears of War 3” is being hailed by fans and critics as this holiday’s first must-have and “everything a triple-A blockbuster should be4.”

“This is our biggest ‘Gears’ game yet, and even though it’s the third instalment in the trilogy, it’s the easiest to jump into if you’re a new fan,” said Epic Games Design Director Cliff Bleszinski. “We’ve added more cooperative gameplay options and built in accessibility features throughout the game to make it approachable and fun for new players and series veterans alike.”

Developed by renowned studio Epic Games exclusively for Xbox 360, “Gears of War 3” is the climactic conclusion to one of the most celebrated and memorable sagas in gaming history. The last bastion of humanity lies in ruins, and amidst the shattered remnants of civilization and ominous whispers of almost certain extinction, Marcus Fenix and Delta Squad must take up their Lancers and make one final stand for survival against the cataclysmic threat of the infected Lambent horde.

Developed exclusively for Xbox 360, “Gears of War 3” is available worldwide (except in Japan, where it will release on Sept. 22), and is available in three distinct editions – Standard ($59.99 CAN), Limited ($79.99) and Epic ($149.99). For additional details on the game, please visit: gearsofwar.xbox.com.

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