A beta version of hotly-anticipated "Destiny" video game will launch on Internet-linked PlayStation and Xbox consoles this month.
The new science fiction shooter title by the studio known for global hit "Halo" is set for official release in September, but the test run for those who pre-ordered the title promises "a diverse sampling of major activities featured in the full game."
PlayStation console owners will be able to explore "Destiny" beginning on July 17, and the beta version will spread to Xbox consoles on July 23, according to publisher Activision and game maker Bungie Studios.
Playing the game will require redemption codes obtained by pre-ordering, along with subscriptions to online gaming networks for PlayStation or Xbox consoles.
"Destiny" will be officially released on September 9 for play on PlayStation 4 and Xbox One consoles as well as their predecessors, the Xbox 360 and PlayStation 3.
Along with encouraging orders of the game, beta play provides a chance to test online features allowing groups of people to challenge one another in the science fiction world.
The game's creator's are touting it as "the next evolution in interactive entertainment and an epic adventure."
"Destiny" puts players in the role of guardians of the last city on Earth, with enemies to battle, special powers to wield, and planets to explore.
"As we prepare to launch our first Beta on multiple console platforms around the world, we are excited and eager to open the flood gates," said Bungie president Harold Ryan.
The game is priced at $60, but special edition versions announced on Monday ranged in price from $90 to $150. Expansion packs promising added play were also offered for pre-order.
Console processing power and Internet capabilities have been taken advantage of to create "an unprecedented combination" of play options from spontaneous co-operative online skirmishes to immersive solo action.
Microsoft bought US-based Bungie in 2000 and the studio came out with "Halo" games that scored as a blockbuster franchise exclusively playable on Xbox.
Bungie split from Microsoft about seven years ago and went on to align itself with Activision Blizzard, the publisher behind "Call of Duty" and other hit franchises.
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