The Bungie-developed Halo 3 is designed to be hand-in-glove compatible with the Xbox 360, right? A federal lawsuit filed against Microsoft and Bungie last week attempts to throw some serious doubt into the mix. The suit alleges that Halo 3 "routinely, consistently, and systematically 'froze,' 'crashed,' or 'locked up.'"

The suit then claims that these issues "disrupted game play," which, if these issues are as terrible or widespread as the suit alleges, is an understatement. The plaintiff, Randy Nunez, is seeking seeking class-action status along with $5 million in damages plus costs and attorneys' fees.

The suit claims that "many consumers" have these issues, making their console "totally inoperable." The court papers cite "industry Internet websites, weblogs, and message boards" to prove that this issue is a common one. It also alleges that Microsoft and Bungie have "received numerous complaints" from consumers on their phone lines and service forums without admitting these alleged Halo 3 issues to the public.

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