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'Halo 2' the book also a best-seller

Book publisher Random House said first-day sales of the strategy guide for video game "Halo 2" were its biggest since the launch of Bill Clinton's book "My Life."
Prima Games
/ Source: Reuters

"Master Chief" entered the record books close behind the former Commander-in-Chief this week, as book publisher Random House said first-day sales of the strategy guide for video game "Halo 2" were its biggest since the launch of Bill Clinton's book "My Life."

"The Official Halo 2 Guide" sold 270,000 copies on Tuesday, the same day the game launched with retail sales of more than $125 million, or more than 2 million units.

Random House set an initial print run of 1.1 million copies for the "Halo" guide, which a spokeswoman said was about five times normal for a strategy guide, and it has already ordered another run of 100,000 units.

Editors at Prima Games, the unit that publishes the strategy guides, played the game in secret in locked and secured rooms at the headquarters of developer Bungie Studios before the game's release.

While the first day for the "Halo" guide was not enough to match the 400,000 copies sold of Clinton's autobiography, it did outsell the first days of notable books from Random House like Kitty Kelley's "The Family: The Real Story of the Bush Dynasty" and Donald Trump's "Trump: Think Like a Billionaire."

"Halo 2" features a super-soldier called Master Chief who has to defend the earth from alien forces. The original "Halo" game sold 5 million units and remains the best-seller to date for Microsoft Corp.'s Xbox video game console.

The "Halo 2" video game's initial sales figure would make it the biggest single-day debut in entertainment history, eclipsing even Hollywood's loftiest box-office premieres.

The book also looks set to break records, as Random House said a typical top seller in the strategy guide market goes up to about 500,000 units.

Random House is a unit of Germany's Bertelsmann AG.