Was there ever any doubt? After 343 Industries gave us a taste of Halo 5: Guardians multiplayer late last year, I knew Halo was back on the right track. And the Xbox team is out with a press release touting Halo 5: Guardians as the “biggest Halo launch in history.”

From the press release (emphasis mine):

One week after launching worldwide, Halo 5: Guardians has made history as the biggest Halo launch and fastest-selling Xbox One exclusive game to-date, with more than $400 million in global sales of Halo 5: Guardians games and hardware, pushing the franchise to over $5 billion lifetime. With the highest week one attach rate for a Microsoft first party title on Xbox One, the game was the most played of any game on Xbox One, as well as the most played on Xbox Live.

It would be nice to see hard numbers on copies sold, but those days are coming to an end. Hell, we all know Destiny is huge, and Activision still refuses to give hard numbers. It’s no surprise the Xbox team is opting for a similar approach. Still, $400 million is nothing to scoff at – even with the inclusion of hardware in the $400 million figure. At the end of the day, money is money and Halo 5: Guardians is making a ton of it.

Here’s Phil Spencer, head of Xbox, on the launch of Halo 5: Guardians:

“The success of Halo 5: Guardians is a testament to the innovative work from the entire team at 343 Industries to bring this installment to Xbox One and the incredible community of fans who have come to love the story, characters and gameplay central to the franchise,” said Spencer. “The game represents all the possibilities of Xbox One and has earned its place as the anchor title in the greatest holiday games lineup in Xbox history.”

Unsurprisingly, digital sales also saw a spike with Halo 5: Guardians. Yep, I was one of them. Why wait at Gamestop when I could play at 11 p.m. CT. Or, so I thought. I was one of the unlucky ones with a 55 GB patch waiting for me as the game unlocked. According to the Xbox team, Halo 5 became the best-selling digital game ever in the Xbox Store for an opening week.

A Halo fan’s journey through the first week

Don’t listen to anyone who says Halo fans don’t love the Halo story. Fans spent 21 million hours playing Halo 5 over the past week. 12 million of those hours were spent in campaign. The campaign was decent but short. It should have focused more on Master Chief and Blue Team reconnecting in the beginning, instead of just throwing them together. It’s jarring to people who don’t follow all the other Halo media.

Halo 5 Warzone multiplayer

9 million hours were spent across nearly 7 million multiplayer matches (half of which were probably played on Orion). And, more than 45 million REQ Packs were acquired with more than 568 million REQ cards. More than half a billion REQ cards and I still can’t get a DMR or Scorpion certification to drop. I swear if I get another Mongoose card…

The future is bright

Forge is coming in December (and hopefully Grifball). Competitive Halo gets fired back up with the Halo World Championship next month as teams across the world battle it out. And 15 new DLC multiplayer maps are coming by June 2016.

It’s great to see Halo back on the right track again. Congrats to 343 Industries for delivering a great game and for the well-deserved success they are seeing. There isn’t a better time to be a console shooter fan. I don’t know how I’ll find the time to play Halo 5, Call of Duty: Black Ops III and Star Wars: Battlefront, but it’s a great problem to have.

When I’m not playing Rocket League (best game ever), you can find me writing about all things games, space and more. You can reach me at alex@newsledge.com

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