Can't wait to play Mass Effect 3? Neither can we. In a move that underscores just how big an event the game's March 6th launch has become, GameStop stores across the United States will open at midnight. Eager fans who find it impossible to wait until Tuesday morning will be able to pick up the game at one of more than 3600 locations nation-wide.
Despite taking place in the normally quiet (for games, anyway) month of March, Mass Effect 3's imminent launch is creating the kind of hysteria normally reserved for big holiday titles. Both Gears of War 3 and Modern Warfare 3 benefited from high-profile launch events last Fall -- in fact, 1.5 million gamers flocked to stores at midnight to snatch up copies of Modern Warfare 3. Will Commander Shepard's final adventure abord the Normandy be able to drive similar numbers of players into the cold, dark night? We'll know soon enough.
For players who would rather virtually participate in the celebration of Mass Effect 3 launch day than actually head out of the house, BioWare will be broadcasting a live stream from events in Edmonton, West Hollywood, Chicago and Boston on its BioWare TV channel. Members of the game's development team will be on hand to share in the festivities.
Mass Effect 3 fans who have already pre-ordered the game, in either its standard or N7 Collector's Edition version, can look forward to some cool bonuses, like the N7 Valkyrie Assault Rifle and a suit of N7 Defender Armor. But, in classic infomercial style, that's not all! For pre-order holders who pick up the game by March 11th, GameStop will knock $50 off the price of Kinect. If you were wondering whether Mass Effect 3 really is better with Kinect, here's your chance to find out.
When it's time to head out and pick up the game, be sure to bring along some extra cash. A wide variety of Mass Effect 3 merchandise is available (action figures, novels, controllers, console vaults and more), and nearly all of it includes vouchers for DLC, but scoring one of everything won't come cheap. You have been warned.
Ranters, will you be attending one of GameStop's midnight openings for Mass Effect 3? Find a participating location here.
Mass Effect 3 releases March 6, 2012, for Xbox 360, PS3, and PC
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