A demo of Halo Wars, the eagerly awaited real-time strategy game set in the Halo universe, has been released on Xbox Live. The 1.4GB demo is available to Xbox Live members in all regions. Read on for our impressions.

The demo consists of a tutorial mission, which is short and sweet, and two missions. The controls seem to work well, which is no surprise given the game was designed from the ground up for the Xbox 360, but at no stage was I required to keep track of, or command, multiple groups of units - building 30 units, hitting LB to select all, putting the cursor over the bad guys and hitting X or Y was pretty much all there was to it.

So it's hard to tell at this stage whether the game will actually require strategy, or just a brute force approach - hopefully this is just a matter of selecting the appropriate difficulty level in the retail version rather than the entire game being dumbed down to suit a one-eyed fanbase.

Having said that, the Halo Wars demo is definitely worth a download and playthrough - the buzz on Twitter is still overwhelmingly positive even after the general public getting their hands on the game.

Tim Hanlon (Follow Tim on Twitter)