Microsoft's usually not accustomed to leaving the release dates of Halo titles unspecified -- without a firm launch window, how would Peter Moore have known what to tattoo upon his rippling biceps? That's why we were surprised the drop date for Ensemble Studio's spartan-filled RTS entry, Halo Wars, had remained a vague "first half of 2009" for quite some time -- until now. Microsoft has finally solidified the game's U.S. release date: March 3, 2009.

Interestingly enough, we won't be the first region to strategically duke it out with the Covenant -- the game is dropping in Japan on Feb. 26, and in Africa, Europe and the Middle East the day after. Don't get too jealous, though, only the North American version allows you to command your troops to teabag your fallen foes en masse. We think it's worth the wait.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.

No doubt, No Doubt Rock Band DLC now available