Microsoft has announced that its Halo Wars: Expanded Universe video series will be releasing via Xbox.com and Xbox Live later this month.

Halo Wars is out this week and the video series will give you the entire historical background from the original Halo trilogy through the this latest outing in the franchise.

The Halo vids will be released in three separate instalments, the first releasing tomorrow along with the game itself.

Act 1, Scene 1

"Universe Expanded: Act I" looks at the story and art elements that make up Halo and how they are presented in Halo Wars and previous titles starring Master Chief. Download the vids via on Xbox.com/Halo with two more acts to look forward to in early March.

The vids introduce you to the game's new characters Sergeant Forge, Captain Cutter and AI Serina, describing how the latest game takes place two decades before the events of Halo: Combat Evolved.

The first episode examines the story and art elements that make up Halo and how they are presented in Halo Wars and previous titles starring Master Chief. Watching it won't make you dominate in Xbox LIVE matches, unfortunately, but it'll give you a much clearer idea of the reasons for you repeatedly cutting bloody swathes through chirpy gangs of waist-high aliens.

Halo Wars is finally out tomorrow. Check out T3's review of the game for more details.