Before Halo Wars released, there was as much anticipation for it as there was skepticism. After playing it post-release, those who doubted it initially quickly became the ones who advocated for it the most. It featured an interesting campaign that shed some light on a point in the Halo universe that wasn't previously covered in a game. It used a sensible difficulty curve that taught players resource management, unit typing, strengths and weaknesses of factions and locations, and the essentials to strategic play that became integral in Halo Wars' addictive multiplayer. All the while, it retained elements of what makes Halo what it is, despite it being the first real-time strategy game in the franchise.
With its level of success and critical acclaim, it was thought that Halo Wars would continue as a series well beyond the first, but in 2008, developer Ensemble Studios announced it would be closing after Halo Wars released in 2009. It wasn't until August 2015 that Microsoft announced a sequel was being made by Creative Assembly with help from 343 Industries. Halo Wars 2 has been set for a Q3 or Q4 release in 2016, but according to a leak from NeoGAF forums, an open beta will become available as early as next week.
Originally posted on the Italian Xbox news site MondoXbox, a tip was received from a player who noticed Xbox's Major Nelson following a "Halo Wars 2 open beta". This information was entered into the store, where an entry for a Halo Wars 2 open beta will run from June 13 until June 20. The open beta will amount to just over 13 GB of storage space.
Halo Wars 2 will release for Xbox One and Windows 10 in Q3/Q4 2016, with the open beta running from June 13 to June 20.