updated 12:28 am EDT, Sun October 14, 2012
Proof of physical copies, torrents of the game found
Microsoft has confirmed that the highly-anticipated Christmas-season release Halo 4 has been leaked three weeks before its release date. Not only have pictures of players viewing the game on their gaming console been seen, but several torrent sites are hosting a 16.28GB file claiming to hold the two-disc title.
"We have seen the reports of Halo 4 content being propped on the Web and are working closely with our security teams and law enforcement to address the situation," a Microsoft spokesperson told gaming enthusiast magazine Game Informer.
Jessica Shea, community manager for Microsoft's 343 Industries posted on Halo Waypoint that "We are working closely with our security teams and law enforcement to address the situation. Piracy is illegal and we are taking vigorous action against it. We have poured our blood, sweat, and tears into Halo 4, and we want you to have the best possible experience with our game, come November 6. If you're interested in staying spoiler-free, we encourage you to exercise caution when visiting various websites, social networking services, and forums. "
Halo 4 isn't the first Halo title to have been leaked prior to the release date. Halo 2 was distributed on piracy sites nearly a month before release, in French. Halo 3 was seen on torrent sites a week before release, after having been found sold early in some UK stores. Halo 3: ODST also was the victim of a French early release a month before release. Halo: Reach was allegedly acquired off of Xbox Live itself, from a copy of the game made available to game reviewers.