Microsoft lost its way with Halo

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MasterChiefnew

Microsoft’s  Phil Spencer, head of Microsoft Game Studios has said that the company “lost our way” with recent entries to the Halo franchise, ODST and Reach.

“The key question for me in managing the studio and the creatives is ‘what is Halo?’, making sure Halo lives up to what I think gamers fell in love with [playing Combat Evolved],” Spencer said to OXM, referring to the upcoming Halo releases, the remake of Halo CE and Halo 4 from 343 Industries.

“What does that mean? Playing Master Chief. We kind of lost our way a little bit, I’ll say. And that’s why I wanted to make sure that at the unveiling of Halo 4, you knew you were playing Master Chief, that John was back. Because Master Chief is the John Wayne character of that universe, and that’s who you want to play.”

“If you were a Halo fan for Halo 1, 2 and 3, Reach made sense to you, but fundamentally there are a ton of players on our box right now that didn’t start with Halo 1. What we said was: ‘let’s get back to what Halo is about’”

“I loved Reach as a game – as a fan of the fiction, I totally love the story in Reach, Reach is one of the best stories in the Halo universe. But it made more sense to you if you were a Halo fan. If you were new to Xbox 360, 360′s where you started playing on Xbox, you understood what Halo 3 was. ODST and Reach, maybe you weren’t as centred.”

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"We really spent time thinking about the story arc that we want to tell, in the world, to get back to Master Chief," Spencer said. "Make it simple – it’s not Halo-anything, it’s Halo 4. You’re not going to be confused about what it is. Halo 4, playing as Master Chief, beginning of a new trilogy.
"That’s the role I want Halo to play, to be what Halo [already] is. It’s not about re-enacting previous wars, it’s not the kind of comic-booky pulp that Gears of War is, which obviously I love. Halo is a very story-driven, immersive experience, centred around Master Chief."

So Halo is all about being Master Chief, a voiceless cipher man of few words in a fancy green suit? Maybe it is, but I curiously enjoyed ODST and Reach far more than any of the other Halo games. Halo 4 is coming – and if you believe the rumour mill might even end up being a launch title for the new, as yet unrevealed Xbox successor.

Source : OXM

Last Updated: July 12, 2011

Geoffrey Tim

Editor. I’m old, grumpy and more than just a little cynical. One day, I found myself in possession of a NES, and a copy of Super Mario Bros 3. It was that game that made me realise that games were more than just toys to idly while away time – they were capable of being masterpieces. I’m here now, looking for more of those masterpieces.

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