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Study: Halo 3 Finding Heavy Casual Gamer Interest

A new report from online market research group BrandIntel analyzed casual game consumers' sentiment surrounding Halo 3, and found the title has significant appeal among that audience, indicating broader support from the casual base for the Xbox 360
A new report from online market research group BrandIntel found that while Halo 3 has historically appealed to a more hardcore gaming audience, it has recently generated significant awareness and engagement among casual gamers, both prior to and after the title's September 25th, 2007 release. The BrandIntel report, titled "Halo 3: Consumer Insight Monitor," analyzed consumer sentiment and discussion share around Halo 3 in addition to Guitar Hero 3: Legends of Rock a game BrandIntel says "appeals to the more casual gamer." The report found that while Halo 3 performed as expected in the hardcore community, it "over-achieved" in the casual gaming community, generating results that BrandIntel says indicate the game's success in generating a broader interest for the Xbox 360 platform as a whole. The report analyzed consumer-created content spanning January 1, 2007 to October 4, 2007, and found a number of interesting trends in the lead-up to the game's release. In the months leading up to the title's launch, says the analyst group, there was a positive correlation between Halo 3's and Xbox 360's discussion levels -- as Halo 3's discussion increased, so too did the Xbox 360's engagement with the casual community. BrandIntel also found that sentiment for the Xbox 360 also improved, indicating that gamers who were previously unsure about purchasing the console were more convinced that it would make a worthy purchase. Finally, the group found that sentiment in the casual community for both Halo 3 and Guitar Hero 3 was very positive, with an average of 3.9 and 4.0, respectively. But, BrandIntel concludes, while Guitar Hero 3 has the advantage of generating traction on casual gaming sites, Halo 3 still managed to generate a greater amount of discussion among casual communities. In August and September 2007, Halo 3's casual discussion more than doubled discussion volume around Guitar Hero 3.

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