September 25th was fast approaching and a bus load of community members were on there way to Best Buy in Bellevue, Washington. Having played Halo 3 for the past 12 hours and armed with a ton of swag to give away to fans, the folks on the bus weren't quite sure what to expect when we pulled up. As the bus pulled up it became quickly obvious that this night was going to be insane as the 150-200 already in line (as of 9:30) began to cheer and go crazy. I think they thought we were Bungie or something. So we got off the bus and began working the line giving out T-Shirts, Lanyards, and Stickers. The crowd had a great energy and would do just about anything for a free piece of swag. After a few passes through the line the t-shirts and lanyards were gone, but Microsoft armed us with another goodie to giveaway, $5 Burger King CreditCards. So off we went to find people to do a "Halo jig". And many Halo jigs were done. Bobby Blackwolf from the Bobby Blackwolf show had a monk chant competition, getting groups of 5 folks together to perform the famous Halo theme.
A little later we got to sneak inside Best Buy where a game with fame session was going on with two folks from the Seattle Mariners baseball team. We also got to see the stack of games and systems available for sale. It was all quite impressive with with a line of Master Chief boxes that seemed to stretch endlessly. After a few of the folks from the community event finished beating the Mariners, we walked back outside to a crowd eager for Halo. Soon 3 giant buses pulled up and out came the Bungie folks. The crowd cheered at these gaming celebrities, and they worked the crowd once again giving out free swag.
Finally as the hour approached the man himself, Mr Bill Gates came out of Best Buy to sell the first copy of the game and shake hands with those in line. For someone being the richest man in the world, my first impression of him was that he looked incredibly humble. Honestly if you'd see him on the street and didn't know him, you would never know how much money this guy is worth. Of course, as soon as he exited best Buy news crews and people flocked. Soon he was lost in a sea of reporters. Finally at 12:01 the doors opened and the game officially went on sale. We left around 12:40 and the line still wrapped a long way around the building. It was going to be a while before the folks at Best Buy got to go home. It was a crazy night with a ton of energy. It almost felt like a sporting event for a college football team. And so the Halo trilogy came to a close. I'm not sure if I'll ever see a game so hyped up, so loved, and a launch event for a game so large as the one for Halo 3. The fight is finished.
Wow... that looks and sounds like it was crazy. But again, a tasteful kind of crazy--not the over the top embarassment that was the MTV Xbox 360 special. Just a ton of geeks and gamers lined up to purchase the most anticipated game in years. It looks like MS hit about the right tone here. Too much flash, and they risk losing the sizzle. This seemed more like a fan-driven buzz.
It's Bellevue, not Bellvue. I go to that Best Buy all of the time. I can't believe they sent the penguin out here for a Best Buy Midnight thing. I missed the 360 launch with Gates at that same BB 2 years ago as well. Silly since up until 2 months ago, I lived 5 mins from that very store.
On April 11, 2007, Forbes reported that telecommunications magnate Carlos Slim Helú had risen to become the world's second richest man. Later, the Wall Street Journal on August 4, 2007 and Fortune Magazine on August 6, 2007 reported that Carlos Slim Helú had topped Bill Gates' position as the wealthiest person in the world. Due to exchange rates, stock valuations, and the overall impossibility of selling all shares at an equal price, the top three placeholders are statistically indistinguishable. The combined net worth of the list is US$3.5 trillion, a US$900 billion increase from 2006.
Statistically though, not much of a difference. The wallmart family though... wow... combined they're richer than God.