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Games A Halogaf Community Thread: The Old Becomes New

Apr 28, 2020
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I wouldn't expect much, Halo Infinite will probably have some Doom guy armor you can pay for in the multiplayer.
That's realistically about what I'm expecting, although a Crucible skin for the Energy Sword (or vice versa) would be pretty cool.



I'll be honest, I'm still trying to process the fact this is even happening. Never expected both my favorite green space marines to be under the same MS umbrella.
 
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SCB3

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Probably a pipedream, but since we've already heard there's a bajillion studios working on this game, fuck it:

I wonder if it's possible id could assist on Infinite, in light of today's megaton news. If not the launch game, then post-game content.

At the very least some sort of Halo/Doom crossover needs to happen, and something is seriously wrong if it doesn't.

Unlikely, ID is still working on DOOM Eternals DLC and then probably off to do DOOM 666
 

Ozzy Onya A2Z

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Playing some MCC with a buddy and 4 Aussies in a 4v4 match...US west server.

FML.

Edit: revenant sniper passenger still works for heavy aim assist. Buddy just went 33 in BTB breakneck with that combo and me wheelmaning it for him. Good nostalgia times.
 
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Thicc Team Six

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Playing some MCC with a buddy and 4 Aussies in a 4v4 match...US west server.

FML.

Edit: revenant sniper passenger still works for heavy aim assist. Buddy just went 33 in BTB breakneck with that combo and me wheelmaning it for him. Good nostalgia times.
The game is destined to perpetually hang in a place of "wow, this is amazing" and "why won't it just work".

H1 and H2 still need a lot of tweaks to get them back to Xbox standards. I have no idea why MSFT doesn't seem to want use their AUS/NZ data centers for Xbox. I just checked a map-there are 5 of them. Last I heard the Xbox store for Australia uses on AUS data centers...I just don't get it.
 

Ozzy Onya A2Z

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The game is destined to perpetually hang in a place of "wow, this is amazing" and "why won't it just work".

H1 and H2 still need a lot of tweaks to get them back to Xbox standards. I have no idea why MSFT doesn't seem to want use their AUS/NZ data centers for Xbox. I just checked a map-there are 5 of them. Last I heard the Xbox store for Australia uses on AUS data centers...I just don't get it.
So true mate, very hit and miss. There is also a lot of trouble with randoms vs made squads/teams. I'm of the same opinion why the fuck MCC didn't use Azure region selection from day one, let alone all the recent updates to MMC in the last two years. At least it's on its way finally. My fear is from the community updates it sounds like you're not going to be able to zero down to just one region e.g. Australia only. I've posted a few times at Waypoint in the appropriate places, hopefully they realise nothing is close to Australia for region selection.
 
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Thicc Team Six

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If I were Phil Spencer for a day. I would put some time into reseting my shooter franchises. Borrow the Warzone/Valorant/Siege model for Halo, Quake, and Gears.

Refresh things at 343 + The Coalition and separate Halo+Gears MP from SP. Setup Doom and Quake as the sister franchises that they should be-Doom SP titles and true Quake Arena MP (no hero shooter).

Seriously, there isn't a good reason that Halo, Gears, and Quake should not be top tier competitive shooter franchises.

Microsoft now owns the legacy of Halo, Gears, Doom, Wolfenstein, Quake, Perfect Dark, and Goldeneye. They need to take care of those legacies with deliberate, thoughtful, and unique releases. Games that don't chase trends and a saturated market.
 

Bernkastel

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Microsoft now owns the legacy of Halo, Gears, Doom, Wolfenstein, Quake, Perfect Dark, and Goldeneye. They need to take care of those legacies with deliberate, thoughtful, and unique releases. Games that don't chase trends and a saturated market.
They don't own Goldeneye. But they have MechAssault(and the whole BattleTech IP).
 
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Thicc Team Six

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They don't own Goldeneye. But they have MechAssault(and the whole BattleTech IP).
Sorry I was speaking generally. Yes.

Though I do think it would be great if they could work something out with Nintendo and the other party (parties?) to get a proper Goldeneye HD release with XBL support on Xbox+PC+Switch.


And yes, Mech Assault absolutely needs to comeback. I was also really fond of the Shadowrun FPS title-that game was really ahead of its time. A f2p/Game Pass variant of that tile could really do well in 2020.
 

Ozzy Onya A2Z

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Seriously, there isn't a good reason that Halo, Gears, and Quake should not be top tier competitive shooter franchises.
This is where I take issue. Halo was and remains popular without the competitive razor focus. Default Halo and 6-10 other playlists totalled magnitudes more population and sales than the competitive portion. 343 continue to drive this hyper competitive focus and it alienates players, gametes, maps and more e.g. developer and marketing esources equating to lost opportunities.

Look at MCC and H3 BTB being super popular again, it's Halo sandbox and 343 need to realise between 4 and especially 5 they have placed too much focus on the competitive and esports elements.

Just create a great and engaging game first. Modes and maps for differing segments are great but take a look at the track record of H4, H5 and management of MCC to see it's missing developer focus and sustain for classic "default" Halo. I'm talking 4v4 OBJ, 4v4 slayer with light vehicles and not so much epsorts, forge and small symmetrical maps.

Halo only ever needs brilliant maps, fresh content and solid networking backed with matchmaking local players to you. Everything else is a distraction, including hyper competitive esports.

The rise of battle royale highlights how much more wider audiences want of out tps and fps games away from esports.

Literally regular sweaty teams drive populations away when the masses are forced to play mostly those maps and modes. Competitive and fun does not have to equate to hyper esports to be good and retain players in large numbers. In turn this equates to better game experiences and close region and skill matching, which is literally where hyper competitive players should also shine.
 
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Thicc Team Six

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They really need to do an "adult" Halo game, extrapolate the helmet cam Flood reveal from CE and just go full on R rated Halo for the campaign. This franchise is almost 20 years old, cater for you aging audience already.
The Halo games are a vehicle to sell action figures now.
 

Compsiox

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As someone who has been a huge lifelong Halo fan I just have to say backtracking makes some parts of the games hard to play through these days.

Also it feels like they used flood levels to increase the amount of time it takes to beat the game.

With this being said I think Halo 2 is my favorite campaign because I feel like the backtracking is minimal or at least made fun. Flood levels weren't too bad either.
 
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voidenberg

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I've been playing Halo MCC on PC.

Finished ODST couple of days ago. I was either annoyed or bored most of the time.

Playing Reach right now. And i'm loving it. The covenant feels intimidating instead of being cartoony. Even the grunts. It really feels like war.
I wish destiny campaigns could be more like this.
 
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Very happy to hear about the FOV slider, it feels like shit going back to console right now after playing on PC.

I really hope they fix the performance issues too because some H2A levels are pretty fucking bad, even on PC.
 
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Thicc Team Six

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Halo can be and should be F2P. I think there are a handful of devs that have really proven out the F2P shooter model (Warzone, Valorant, Siege*). That said, I wasn't expecting Halo's F2P model to go over well especially after Halo 5's decision to cut BTB and create an entire mode dedicated to selling Req packs. Neither 343 or The Coalition has figured out how to do micros-both Gears 5 and Halo 5's models are complete disasters.

Saw this the other day. Marty is great. I still remember doing this back in 2007. Really cool way of unlocking the armor.
 
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Thicc Team Six

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Did he leave or was he fired? There's a difference. I wonder how many more are going to abandon ship?

Thicc Team Six Thicc Team Six Apex Legends does F2P brilliantly.
Another great example. There are a lot of great free or nearly free to play models out there.

Both Halo and Gears should be F2P MP but neither studio seems to have a good grasp on how to handle micros. They haphazardly copy what other titles on the market do. There is no one size fits all model. Look at what others are doing and think about how it may or may not fit your game. Adjust the model to fit the game, not the game to fit the model.
 
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I'll be honest. I've heard from some people in the know who've visited 343 before that Chris Lee was one of the (possibly few) people there who actually seemed to know what he was doing and had a clear vision for where he wanted to go with this game/franchise.

So him leaving like this is a bit... worrying.
 
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Ozzy Onya A2Z

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I'll be honest. I've heard from some people in the know who've visited 343 before that Chris Lee was one of the (possibly few) people there who actually seemed to know what he was doing and had a clear vision for where he wanted to go with this game/franchise.

So him leaving like this is a bit... worrying.
Fair comment mate. All of us being external it's obviously conjecture to who is worth having stay and who to go but worrying to hear the person who knew his shit and had a vision left of his own accord.

Halo just does not have a streamlined studio for production of Halo games.
 
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The only sliver of hope I have left is Staten's involvement, but who knows how much of this he can actually salvage between now and whenever this game actually releases.

One thing I'm more and more certain about though is that the other leadership at 343 needs to go. Whenever these gaming development stories pop up (Destiny, Andromeda, Anthem, etc.) it always seems like bad management is one of the main causes. And 343's top leadership has been a constant throughout their entire tenure and as far as I can tell haven't really had any changes or consequences for their fuckups. I just can't imagine Spencer being okay with the Series X's big flagship game kind of falling on its face like this and being delayed out of launch, so... yeah. I think he needs to take a good hard look at the current state of things and make a few hard (or maybe not so hard) decisions.

Hell, I would LOVE to see id take a crack at Halo, even if it's just a spinoff. Some of the things in Eternal are controversial but IMO both it and 2016 blow everything 343's done out of the water.
 

Thicc Team Six

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Compilation of my posts from the Gaming side thread. Figured I would post them here as well for a little calmer discussion.
___

This one actually strikes me as a loss for Halo fans. Chris always struck me as one of the more passionate people at 343, a big fan of the series. It is a wonder to me that he is leaving but other longtime 343 leaders have stayed in their roles for such a long time. I think the problems at the studio are larger than the problems on this game. The game is just shining a light on the underlying issues at the studio. There is a serious leadership problem and a lack of a cohesive vision for the franchise as a whole.

In my opinion Chris was placed in a no win situation. When the inevitable happened he was the only one left standing when the music stopped. Maybe I am wrong, but just my take as someone who has watched the circus around Halo since Bungie left this franchise in Microsoft's hands.
___
Let’s not turn this into a Phil thread.


Jim Ryan doesn’t micromanage Naught Dog or Santa Monica. He trusts them to deliver great games. Phil does the same. Playground, Mojang, Turn 10, Rare all seem to be able to do that without Phil holding their hands. 343 is seemingly the outlier. When a studio fails to deliver then Phil and Jim need to make hard decisions. Let’s hope that is what is happening now.
___
I want to offer my comments re: Bonnie Ross as I feel she is being characterized a bit too harshly.

I have respect for Bonnie. She stepped up to the plate and took on Halo when Microsoft was considering farming it out to Gearbox. Microsoft needs a proper studio to care for Halo, not just outsourced games. She had a long career at Microsoft before taking the lead role at 343. She's been involved in a number of successful game projects and I don't want to discredit that.

She has a lot of enthusiasm for transmedia and merchandise. I think that she has spent too much time focusing on that and not enough time tending for the narrative and the FPS titles-the two most fundamental components of the series. 343 has put out dozens of books, toys, live action features, animated features, a handful of spinoff games, and other licensed content. Meanwhile the core FPS series has faded from relevance in the past decade.

She also has some different views on gender than I do. I support and agree with her that there are opportunities for women to get involved in the industry. Where I disagree with her is the idea that Halo is exclusionary because it appeals predominately to men. No amount of additional women creatives will get more women interested in Halo. Similarly no amount of male creatives will get me interested in Twilight. Men and women gravitate to different types of media and that is ok. I see where this has bled into the game's stories which have attempted to add a new roster of Spartans to make the game more inclusive. There has also been a big focus on Cortana's sexuality and her relationship with Chief. Halo, and Chief by extension were never exclusionary. The brilliance of Chief is that nearly anyone can self-insert. We do not need 10 new Spartans that take away from Cheif's story to make sure that people feel represented by the game. Halo can make everyone feel included without having to become the Justice League. These new elements have not brought new fans into the series but they have alienated older fans.

I seriously hope the best for Bonnie and I appreciate the fact that she stepped up to manage Halo when nobody else would. I don't know what state the series would be in without her. I also support her efforts to get women involved in the industry-I think it is important that gaming grow to reach new audiences. With that said, I think that her talents (she is a talented individual and has a long career to prove it) would best be suited in another role at Xbox. I'm not going to point at her and say she ruined Halo. It's not that simple and she's not that singularly powerful.

I think there is a lot of talent at 343; it is just a matter of making sure that people's talents and passions are matched with their roles. That is where I believe 343 has dropped the ball and why we haven't seen Halo thrive in the past decade.
 

Ozzy Onya A2Z

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I agree with Phil taking a hands off approach but Xbox should be checking in regularly and assessing the progress or results are on track. The Xbox marketing team honestly thinking the big Halo next gen reveal was going to be well received is laughable, let alone 343 putting that in as their contribution to next gen Xbox launch. It's a weak foundational element in an otherwise brilliant multi-year roadmap and comeback story for Xbox as far as other areas and studios go.

I respect and enjoy hearing Bonnie Ross talk about diversity and wanting to get women into gaming/industry more. That's all good stuff in its own right. Here's my take on things at this point in time regarding Halo/343 though; the track record shows the studio and Bonnie helming the studio haven't delivered in terms of games and broke this next gen launch as well. Awesome work on things like Halo 4 terminals, Forward Unto Dawn and books as well as loot crates and clothing etc. I've always hated Mega-crap-bloks, they're expensive for cheap shit toys. When I look at the games and what happened to my hardcore friends (non-mlg/hcs) Halo has objectively failed since 343 took over, at best it has been a marked decline. The sales pale by comparison, the player retention pales by comparison, games released that don't work (one could argue they're just keeping Halo 2 traditions alive) and above all this dogmatic approach the studio has leads me away from Halo. When I reflect on the idea of my wife or daughter wanting to play Halo with my son and I it's a zero sum game; they're just not interested. My daughter will play Apex Legends (taking turns) with me as there is a wealth of things to do even though she cannot compete against the gunplay elements of online multiplayer. She and my wife enjoy other games such as Rayman Legends or Sims or Jackbox games etc. My son and his friends had Halo for about a 3 month run and things like Forge in Fortnite or Apex Legends or Ark or playing new games all dropped Halo right out of the picture.

Why does Halo have to push the game and studio towards the lower percentages of its audience? Promote and grow worthy elements, such as diversity, but not to the detriment of the games themselves and majority of your fan base. Just jump into game chat on PC or Xbox and see how very little Halo players there are outside of males. 343/Bonnie have introduced new modes, new art, new sounds, new characters, new studio/staff etc and it's all objectively failed to grow the Halo fanbase in any meaningful way, male or female. I say this as a circle of near 20 hardcore Halo fans who annually LAN, paintball and generally play games together in party chat. Specifically there are 2 ladies amongst us, neither played Halo for very long at all. Both played Destiny PvE content a shit ton. Ask yourself where is this new audience and why aren't they staying with Halo? We've had countless books, figurines and a number of game releases by 343 now.

I don't replay Halo 4 or 5, I never want to go back and play Halo Wars 2 and I'm often quitting out of MCC matches due to friends not playing anymore and the mismanagement of what I wish to play out of MCC. Fuck esports, I could give two shits about it. I understand there's a market for it but again 343/leadership at 343 have catered to a diminishing returns segment of the audience and literally alienated the majority e.g. default Halo 1-3 players such as BTB or light vehicles 4v4 or objective. The facts of how they manage MCC today speaks volumes about the importance they still place on esports in game. Fuck midship and small MLG maps, I've had enough.

They have also failed to deliver new innovative ways to play. Spartan Ops is hardly worth mentioning. Warzone was fun for a very short while and Firefight was a long time coming post launch. They're netcode and region support is not AAA, it's barely second rate in the current market. A studio so closely aligned with their platform and Azure should be helming innovative gameplay, the reveal and track record of 343 does not instill confidence in such areas. What we saw of the Slipspace engine was ridiculously not next generation by consoles alone, lest we even compare against current/next gen PC releases. So when I talk about gutting the leadership at 343 it isn't just directed at Bonnie for being a woman, it's directed at the decision making and lack of creativity at the studio based on what I see in games, what my friends choose to play and my/family level of enjoyment from sustain. Where was anything such as innovation in genres such as battle royale or sparks of brilliance from fun forge maps/games by the community or Bungie's raids/strikes/shared world events. What Infinite and 343 has shown us to date is pathetic and most certainly unacceptable in terms of next generation.

Why not a live mix of campaign, coop and PvE elements akin to Destiny's Gambit built from the ground up on Azure and using fallback to bots when players aren't available to deliver something unique? Even having that as PvE modes such as post end game content. How about a live dynamic world that is real time shaped by community games played or alignments you have from campaign. How about a weapon crafting/customisation system for campaign so you can play how you like e.g. skill tree like Jedi Fallen Order. Why not a single universe Halo where everything is driven in the cloud?

Fuck me the more I push beyond just analysing 343's output from their track record into a realm of "what could be" for next generation I just get upset at the lack of leadership at 343. They're very firmly not inspiring this Halo fan to dream, it's more an anxiety of please just be good and functional.

When I look at the key art I'm full of love for Halo again, brilliant work. When I actually see the game I just want to quit and play something else. Currently when I check my friends list Halo isn't what is being played to join up, unless I'm grinding some achievement for a mate to tick a box.
 
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Oh, Bonnie isn't the only one I'm saying should go. I'm talking about the entire leadership. Her, Frank, Kiki, and whoever else in a leadership position allowed it to reach the shambolic mess it seems to be in - and yeah, maybe including Chris Lee if he also did a shit job despite what I've heard about him (he HAS been at 343 for a long time, after all, and did work on the other 343 games which obviously had a lot of controversies behind them.)

It's been shitstorm after shitstorm with this company; hell, we've barely even SEEN any of Infinite (only like 10 minutes of gameplay!) yet we're already being inundated with controversies. What's gonna happen when the rest of the game is revealed? Especially if - and I sincerely hope this isn't the case - that gameplay slice they showed was the best they thought they had? Something's gotta give eventually, and changes have to be made if shit like this is still happening after a decade of them having control of the franchise. Sounds cold, but it is what it is.

The ones doing the grunt work are rarely to blame in these situations. Hell, I've heard there's people there who actually do have good ideas, such as returning to classic gameplay, but they just repeatedly get cockblocked by higher-ups. So you give Ross, who already pretty clearly wasn't a great leader before all this, a metric shitload of "disposable" contractors and apparently entire other studios she has to coordinate with, and yeah, I can see why the whole thing is such a disorganized mess. Too many cooks etc.

I'm not saying you have to completely cut these people out. Give them other positions within Microsoft if you have to. But they shouldn't be leading 343 anymore, not after all that's happened. Hell, I'm baffled why it took them so long to bring Joe Staten on. Him, Eric Nylund, Marty, etc. should've been signed up for this studio the instant they became available.

As for Spencer, I agree with him not micromanaging the hell out of the studios... but he's gotta put his foot down at some point. As soon as 343 showed him that demo, he should've said "I'm not opening my next-gen show with this". Or even better, yeah, he should've been checking in along the way. I just refuse to believe he legitimately thought it'd go over well, something must've happened behind the scenes.

It's just a shame. This franchise has so much potential, and it feels like it's being squandered. I actually liked Halo 4, but to me it all fell off a cliff immediately after that.
 
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