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Halo:CE Anniversary Announced (MS Conf, Nov 15th 2011, $40)

Sanic

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New OP:

GarthVaderUK said:
- Includes Halo: CE campaign remastered and the Halo: Reach multiplayer suite with 7 maps (6 multiplayer map remakes from Halo 1+2 and 1 new Firefight map, playable from the disc or they can be added to your hard drive to play as additional maps for Reach). Doesn't include any previous Halo: Reach maps.
- RRP: $39.99 (US), £34.99 (UK).
- Release Date: November 15th 2011 worldwide (exactly 10 years since Halo: CE's US release).
- You can switch between classic and new graphics in real time, and the campaign has the same gameplay and physics system that the original had.
- Music re-recorded, sound remastered. Animations and cinematics are being reworked.
- New matchmaking options for a more classic multiplayer experience.
- Lots of new Easter Eggs and other surprises have been added, including motion comics.

343 podcast discussing Anniversary and Halo 4: http://halo.xbox.com/Content/assets/en-us/Podcast/343Sparkast_004.mp3

Trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=F1J3z_2Uep8
343 ViDoc: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=riJUuSq4MZ4
GT interviews Frankie: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=npGE9Nc0WY0
Vid showing main menu: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Mm7Rd9kabAo

PR:
Product Overview:
“Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary” is a spectacularly remastered version of the original “Halo” campaign, created in celebration of the 10th anniversary of one of the most beloved franchises in gaming history. With a bounty of new features including cooperative play over Xbox LIVE, a bundle of some of the most beloved multiplayer maps in “Halo” history reimagined for Xbox LIVE, new challenges and a new story to uncover, “Halo: Anniversary” is a must-have experience, coming exclusively to Xbox 360 on Nov. 15, 2011.

Developed by 343 Industries in collaboration with Saber Interactive and Certain Affinity, “Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary” immerses you in the landmark campaign and genre-defining multiplayer game that helped revolutionize the first-person shooter genre and sparked one of the most iconic science-fiction universes of all time.

Features:
- Stunningly remastered campaign. Relive the award-winning adventure that defined “Halo: Combat Evolved” as one of the best games of the decade with breathtaking next-gen graphics and audio remastered for the Xbox 360. Engage in epic-scale battles against the backdrop of the eponymous “Halo” ringworld, and relive nostalgic memories with the ability to toggle Classic mode to play the original version. (change between old and new graphics in-game with a button press)
- Online campaign co-op. For the first time, experience the story that started it all with a friend on Xbox LIVE and launch a cooperative assault against the Covenant, whether you live across the street or halfway around the world.
- Classic “Halo” multiplayer maps reimagined. Wage battle on six detailed remakes of some of the most beloved “Halo” multiplayer maps of all time, and bring the fight to the Covenant on a stunning and resonant new Firefight map. Remastered in the “Halo: Reach” engine and inspired by maps from “Halo: Combat Evolved” and “Halo 2,” these iconic battlefields reignite the heart-pounding multiplayer action of the original favorites and let you relive epic confrontations like you’ve never experienced them.

Developed in collaboration with Certain Affinity, the new multiplayer maps are included on the “Halo: Anniversary” game disc, which means players will not need to own the original “Halo: Reach” game to play. The first of the new remakes to be revealed at E3 Expo 2011 will be the fan-favorite map Damnation. (confirmed MP maps: Battle Creek, Hang 'Em High, Damnation)

New challenges and enhanced story. Unlock up to 1,000 Achievement points as you clash with online opponents and battle through the campaign, and uncover never-before-revealed backstories told in motion-graphic form that foreshadow new mysteries in the story of “Halo 4.”

More information on “Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary” will be revealed at Halo Fest, which coincides with PAX Prime 2011 Aug. 26 through 28 in Seattle, Wash.
343 Halo Bulletin: Inaugural Frankie Edition

I’d just like to precede the inaugural 343 Halo Bulletin with a note to say that it’s very, very nice to be back, talking to Halo fans directly, after a couple of years of relative quiet. And today, you’re going to find out what we’ve been doing, with all that quiet.

In the first ten years of Halo, Bungie created a universe so compelling, gameplay so absorbing, controls so natural, that a phenomenon was birthed, raised, and honed into Spartan caliber. And to celebrate that decade of innovation, excitement and involvement from a community like no other, 343 Industries finds itself tasked with continuing that franchise and building upon its strong foundations.

The first celebration, and the one with which opened the Halo conversation at E3, is the game that started it all, albeit reimagined, retouched, remastered and remade. Halo Anniversary, as we call it for the purposes of brevity, is that game.

It’s been a long time coming – and frankly, the single most requested item from the Halo community. More, even, than the legendary, mythical Grunt Plushy. But we couldn’t just remake it, there’d be no point. For starters, the game Bungie made in the first place is practically perfect, and it’s available, verbatim, on disc and Games on Demand for Xbox 360. It runs smoothly and at a higher resolution.

What we had to do was modernize it in meaningful, useful, exciting, practical and valuable ways. And we had to honor it, properly. So how to do all that?

Firstly, we had to consider what it was people truly loved about Halo. And so we did. For months. The main list is obvious – gameplay, story, universe, physics, controls. Bam. But there were other, less objective things. Atmosphere, music, tension, joy, acrophobia, agoraphobia and claustrophobia. Feelings, in other words. So all of those had to be replicated, retained and somehow enhanced.

So we did not DARE touch the gameplay in Halo. As a matter of fact, the gameplay engine, the physics, the controls (with some minor changes for the 360 controller and the aspect ratio) are identical. It is, in short, the Halo CE engine, but with a second graphics layer, a separate engine in fact, running on top. You can see this phenomenon yourself by pressing the back button at any time. The game will switch from old graphics to new, and back again, in real time. That in itself, is a bizarrely fun feature – one we constantly used to check to see if things truly were identical, or more frequently, simply to compare the two generations of hardware and see how far things had come. Although perversely, sometimes we switched back only to remember how good the original looked.

We’ve definitely made some changes in how the new graphics affect the game. For example, the Library is still scary, eerie, dangerous – but now, with some clever use of textures and colors and lighting, it’s a bit easier to navigate. There are visual cues to orient yourself by, as you battle the bad guys who now inhabit that space.

There are tiny little differences that do in fact make the experience fresh, even where it should be verbatim – subtleties that deep, hardcore fans will notice, like extra vegetation making headshots just a shade more challenging, or the remastered audio making some encounters a bit more shocking.

And on the subject of audio – everything has been remastered – sound effects beefed up and remixed, but more importantly, we took Marty O’Donnell’s industry-changing soundtrack and gave it some deep, smoove loving, with a re-orchestration and brand new recording with the Skywalker Orchestra. So the perfect melodies, the movements and the themes are intact, but just glowingly more rich and lavish (and expensive). Anyone who’s heard the similar project with Halo Legends will know sort of what to expect, but expect it to be better.

All the work on the improved graphics layer for Campaign (and a ton of other elements, not to oversimplify things) was created in partnership with our friends at Saber Interactive and we’re incredibly proud of the work they’ve done and the hurdles they’ve overcome.

And multiplayer! Well that was the challenge. We ached over this one. Do we build peer-to-peer netcode for Halo 1 and simply update the graphics? Do we disrupt the Halo: Reach player base and community ecology? Or do we invest in the loyalty of those players, and the amazing new features Reach has brought to the table? It was a super hard decision, but ultimately the thing that tipped the balance in Reach’s favor was this simple fact: If we added netcode to Halo CE’s console gameplay, it would change it irrevocably. It would NOT be the same game you remembered – it would be a compromised vision of it, with the pros and cons that lag, latency and more can bring. Oh, and everyone would whore the pistol 24/7.

So Reach it is. And that helped us define which maps to choose. Obviously Blood Gulch would be a bit redundant. And obviously Beaver Creek was a no-brainer. You’ll also see a new Covenant-themed version of Damnation, a glimpse of another old fan favorite from Halo CE, and one map that while famous and awesome, has never been seen on console before. I’m sure you’ve figured it out by now.

There are seven total multiplayer maps, and we’ll reveal them over the next few months. But one of them and another factor that pushed us towards the Reach engine is a Firefight map – a Firefight map unlike any you’ve ever seen before. One thing I can tell you is that this one is particularly appropriate to Halo: Combat Evolved but will do things that no Firefight map has done.

We plan to support these maps fully and appropriately in matchmaking – making sure that the nature and nostalgia of those maps are honored in how they’re included. We haven’t finalized all those decisions yet, but think about how “classic modes” work now. All of our multiplayer work is done in partnership with the incredible folks at Certain Affinity, including of course, Max Hoberman, who is himself a walking celebration of classic Halo.

I can also admit we’ve been spying on you guys a bit. A forum question here, a thread there. Trying to gently find out what Halo players, both current and lapsed, really wanted from a renewed, revitalized Halo experience, without sending those questions into the sterile environ of a focus group. This game is a gift to the fans and a celebration of ten years of epic community. We wanted that to be enveloped in the product itself.

And it’s a great value – something else we wanted to be sure about. At $39.99 I personally feel you’re getting more than a full-priced game’s worth of content – and without the slightest risk that after spending sixty bucks, the game simply isn’t fun. But we dogpiled on the value. What else have we added? Well, lots. Some we’ll talk about, some we won’t. There will be Achievements – hilarious, easy, hard, cool. There will be Terminals – but on a scale of ambition you might not expect. These Terminals will add a really fascinating glimpse into the deeper heart of the Halo universe and make important connections between our past games, present novels and future titles.

We’re adding tons more too. Including Easter Eggs and surprises. We’re adding functionality that will give players reasons to replay time and time again. And there are a few other tidbits we’re saving for later. And we’ll share more of those at Halo Fest, during Pax Prime in Seattle in August. That will also be the first chance for players to get a hands-on experience. And Halo Fest is coming along just fine. There’s going to be amazing stuff there – panels, tournaments, contests, exhibits, discussions, surprises, celebrities and celebrations. And more information about our other announcement from E3.

Halo 4. Phew. As news leaked slowly about Anniversary, we smiled rather than cried. Because it helped obscure the real secret we’ve been keeping. A game that a very large and very talented team has been working on for quite some time. The beginning of a new trilogy and the return of the Master Chief.

The teaser is, as tradition demands, brief and titillating, but the Halo hardcore will see an awful lot of detail in the vacuum and chaos. They will understand where our story begins and they’ll have some questions answered. But just as many raised. What’s that weapon the Chief has? What has happened to him? Where is he? All of these questions (and more) will be answered in good time.

I’ll be back from time to time, probably to talk about water technology, but for the most part, your regular Halo updates in the Bulletin will come from the infinitely smarter and more nicerer, bs angel.

By the way, I think we’re just getting started…

-Frankie
http://halo.xbox.com/en-us/news/headline/the-halo-bulletin-inaugural-frankie-edition/59856

Box art:


Original OP:

Conference trailer: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0PqUQKe7BaQ

HQ Screens post #134 courtesy of Lyphen

No separate MP component, Halo 1 maps are a Reach map pack. Developed by Saber Interactive and Certain Affinity. Uses the Reach engine.
Can switch between classic and new graphics in real time. Uses the same gameplay and physics systems that the original did.



 

Sanic

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Would appreciate it if a mod could remove the extra parenthesis at the end.
 

Rodeo Clown

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Lyphen said:
Campaign looked...well, like a remake. I'm excited for the maps though. REACH compatible DLC?
What it looked like, and what I'm hoping for. They showed an assassination pretty clearly. I think the only way this works is if the multiplayer is just maps for Reach.
 

MrDanger88

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Mar 6, 2010
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Awesome. Definitely be getting this. My bro and I used to play co-op campaign like crack back in the day.
 

Ken

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May 27, 2010
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The character models and some of the stages shown in the trailer looked really ugly, so I'll just hope it was an early build and not indicative of the final product.

Seemed like the developers weren't sure whether to keep the look of Halo CE on Xbox or go for a new coat on everything, and ended up somewhere in the middle.
 

bobs...onGaf

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Rodeo Clown said:
What it looked like, and what I'm hoping for. They showed an assassination pretty clearly. I think the only way this works is if the multiplayer is just maps for Reach.

Yeah, dissapointing really, looks like the classic multiplayer will never be playable over live.
 

Anth0ny

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Trailer looked horrible. I thought this was going to be a real remake, not just HD textures on a 10 year old game.

Regardless, I'll pick it up because I love Halo CE too much.
 

Rodeo Clown

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Mar 1, 2007
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Blueblur1 said:
I'm calling it right now: The '7 new multiplayer maps' are totally just new Reach maps.
Yeah, the assassination was straight up Reach and the way it was worded made it sound like it. And they should just be Reach maps. Don't splinter the player base only a year after Reach.
 

Natural

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Can't wait for this. Especially for the multi-player. Graphics looked quite dodgy in some areas, and fine in others.
 

Sai

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Man, I hope this is early. Master Chief looked weird, framerate's pretty terrible, and it looks like they just re-used all of the animations from Halo CE.

On the plus side, some of the remade enviroments looked really nice. Silent Cartographer was purdy~
 
Feb 18, 2010
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Natural said:
Can't wait for this. Especially for the multi-player. Graphics looked quite dodgy in some areas, and fine in others.

It's weird. The environments look great, but MC's visor actually looks worse than the original.
 

Ken

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May 27, 2010
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Blueblur1 said:
I'm calling it right now: The '7 new multiplayer maps' are totally just new Reach maps.

They showed Damnation, Battle Creek, and Hang Em' High in the trailer already.
 

Poyunch

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Dec 29, 2009
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Anth0ny said:
Trailer looked horrible. I thought this was going to be a real remake, not just HD textures on a 10 year old game.

Regardless, I'll pick it up because I love Halo CE too much.
It's funny since you have an OoT 3D avatar.
 

Shake Appeal

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Oct 26, 2006
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rasberryjam said:
Kind of excited that they're keeping the classic Halo flailing death animations.
Well, all the animations are Halo 1 animations, so...

It's a nice lick of paint with a Reach map pack attached.

And it will be $40.
 
Oct 4, 2007
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the1constant.mlblogs.com
http://xbox360.ign.com/articles/117/1172870p1.html


"Halo CE Anniversary is being developed in conjunction with Timeshift developer Saber Interactive and Certain Affinity, known most recently for their work on the second Map Pack DLC for Halo: Reach. Anniversary uses the Halo: Reach engine to present an updated look for the original campaign, as well as a Classic mode featuring the original assets from Halo: Combat Evolved.

Six multiplayer maps from the original Halo: CE are making the jump to Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary, along with "Damnation" from Halo 2. Multiplayer will feature the full sweet of options that players have come to expect from the series - including Firefight mode."
 

rasberryjam

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I wouldn't mind them pulling another ODST. Getting an awesome campaign coupled with a multiplayer disc with all the maps would be pretty sweet.
 

GhaleonEB

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Blueblur1 said:
No, I'm saying that the included multiplayer mode will be Reach's MP with it's maps plus the 7 additional maps.
That's what I've been expecting. I assume it's not Halo 1 MP, but Reach with MP maps.

(Those maps won't play well with Reach's sandbox, but nevermind.)
 

Shake Appeal

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Oct 26, 2006
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Blueblur1 said:
No, I'm saying that the included multiplayer mode will be Reach's MP with it's maps plus the 7 additional maps.
Yeah, people don't seem to grasp this, so I will repeat:

There is no Halo: CE Anniversary multiplayer via Live. None. Whatsoever.

It's just a map pack for Reach. Same as ODST, where there was a second disc that was just Halo 3 MP with more maps.
 

GloveSlap

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Dec 28, 2007
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Where is the pistol and why the hell are there assassinations? They need to keep the multiplayer exactly the same, that is the whole reason people wanted a remake in the first place. Halo 1 with online, thats it.
 

Sai

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Shake Appeal said:
Yeah, people don't seem to grasp this, so I will repeat:

There is no Halo: CE Anniversary multiplayer via Live. None. Whatsoever.

It's just a map pack for Reach. Same as ODST, where there was a second disc that was just Halo 3 MP with more maps.
Huh...

Well, I'll finally get Damnation at least.
 

op_ivy

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Amazin86er said:
http://xbox360.ign.com/articles/117/1172870p1.html


"Halo CE Anniversary is being developed in conjunction with Timeshift developer Saber Interactive and Certain Affinity, known most recently for their work on the second Map Pack DLC for Halo: Reach. Anniversary uses the Halo: Reach engine to present an updated look for the original campaign, as well as a Classic mode featuring the original assets from Halo: Combat Evolved.

Six multiplayer maps from the original Halo: CE are making the jump to Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary, along with "Damnation" from Halo 2. Multiplayer will feature the full sweet of options that players have come to expect from the series - including Firefight mode."


damnation from HALO 2!? wow