Microsoft Corp. (MSFT) on Wednesday said it will invite gamers to test the online multiplayer features in its long-awaited "Halo 3" video game in spring 2007.

The "Halo 3" test will be available to Xbox 360 consoles and accessed via Microsoft's Xbox Live online game service.

Microsoft said it will take feedback from testers and use it to put finishing touches on the third installment of its blockbuster game series.

Microsoft and "Halo" maker Bungie Studios said they also will offer new downloadable "Halo 2" content for the Xbox 360 in spring 2007.

Sony Corp.'s (SNE) PlayStation 3 — a rival to the Xbox 360 — makes its U.S. debut on Friday. Nintendo Co. Ltd. will unveil its new Wii console on Sunday.

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