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Microsoft: Halo: Reach Beta, Exclusive DLC For Modern Warfare 2, Dead Rising 2, More

Microsoft has nailed down the Halo: Reach beta date, announced exclusive Modern Warfare 2, Dead Rising 2, and Final Fantasy XIII partnerships, and plans to kick off an "Xbox Live Arcade Block Party" promotion this March.
Today in San Francisco, Microsoft is holding its X10 showcase event for the press, and alongside it, the company has made announcements about the next wave of content and partnerships coming to the Xbox 360 system. Notably, Microsoft has partnered with Activision Blizzard and Infinity Ward for an exclusive Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 content pack to be released to the platform this spring. It is also partnering with Capcom for exclusive Dead Rising 2 DLC, titled Dead Rising 2: CASE ZERO. These moves seemingly cement a strategy begun with Grand Theft Auto IV of locking down exclusive DLC as platform-exclusive titles become increasingly difficult to come by. The company has also confirmed that the public beta of Bungie's Halo: Reach will begin May 3. The beta codes are distributed via last year's Halo: ODST. Microsoft has also announced a partnership with Square Enix to release a Final Fantasy XIII console bundle which includes an Xbox 360 unit with a 250 GB hard drive, two controllers, and the game, for $399. While there was an FFXIII PlayStation 3 bundle in Japan with a specially decorated version of the console, Microsoft has scored the exclusive console bundle in the West. The game releases in Western territories March 9. The company has also announced an Xbox Live Arcade Block Party promotion this March. It appears to be similar to its successful "Summer of Arcade" promotion which launched such hits as Braid and Shadow Complex, among others. This Spring, Microsoft will launch Toy Soldiers, Perfect Dark, Scrap Metal, and its Game Room service to Xbox Live. There are also updates on previously-announced games, including a May 18 North American release date for Remedy's Alan Wake and Ruffian's Crackdown 2 "later this year."

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