With a poor October box office, some film executives are convinced that Halo 3 has kept movie audiences home.
According to an Advertising Age article, total industry ticket sales were only USD 80 million for the weekend of October 5, down 27 per cent from the prior year.
That's the worst performance for an October weekend since 1999.
Halo 3 launched on September 26, and has earned sales of well over USD 300 million. Xbox Live players racked up more than 40 million hours of game play by the end of the first week.
"The audience on this game is the 18-to-34 demographic, similar to what you'd see in cinemas," said Mike Hickey, an analyst at Janco Partners, adding that "this could last for several weeks."
"We marketed [Halo 3] like a film," said Josh Goldberg, a Microsoft product manager, "and now, we're just as big or bigger than film."
In terms of revenue, the launch of Halo 3 set the single-day record for an entertainment product, beating films such as Spider-man 3 and Pirates of the Caribbean: Dead Man's Chest, books such as Harry Potter and the Deathly Hallows, and games such as Halo 2.