Halo 5's story needs a postmortem from 343i

Lets be honest here, Halo 5 probably has the or at least one of the weakest campaigns in the series. Sure the gunplay and level design was great(but not without several issues) but the actual story, plot and pacing were pretty bad and I don’t think thats really a controversial statement.

To anyone who has played Halo 5’s campaign its clear that something happened during development. The game just feels like large chucks of it are missing, the plot itself feels very rushed along. The big Cortana reveal is thrown at us in the second mission and a big bad from previous media is killed in the first. The “greatest hunt in gaming history” effectively ends in mission five and the rest of the game is simply hitching a ride and then all drama is shoved in the final three missions. The cutscenes themselves too feel rushed and cut off suddenly and without notice, the most obvious ones to me are Roland’s sudden rant in the beginning of mission three(that never really goes anywhere and is never brought up again) and a moment between Locke and Halsey that just sorta happens and then ends without mush build up or emotion(1:37:04 - 1:37:35).

No matter how you cut it it seriously seems that the entire campaign was apparently reworked before release, the strongest evidence of this has to be the concept art and the marketing for the game. Its no secret that what feels like the majority of concept art for Halo 5 shows something we didn’t get, a game with a lone Chief usually wearing a poncho wandering and fighting though the lands alone, left with seemingly only his emotions. These pieces are too many to simply be abstract concepts and ideas, it feels like this was going to be the major theme and tone of the game at one point. It would explain the E3 2013 trailer very well and would explain the years and years of talk from 343i about tackling Chief’s emotions and finding his humanity(something that Halo 5 oddly enough seems to have almost nothing of).

There is also the marketing campaign for Halo 5, one that hyped up a game with themes and story elements we never really got. The “Hero or Traitor?” tagline was one pushed around for months and months and yet that was barely there in the game. Yeah Chief does go AWOL which in the military is a pretty big deal but as a story element, to the players playing the game its seems so minor its ridiculous. All Chief does is leave…thats it. Thats the big, questionable action that was supposed to make us rethink him? Thats the moment that starts off the “greatest hunt in gaming history” and causes people to question their savior? Thats crazy. There is also these themes of a darker story with ONI coverups and the players being forced to question “what is real?”. Remember the two Locke and Chief ads?

And even if you somehow missed all that, something that literally everyone who has played the game has seen is that for a game that is supposedly all about two sides to the same story, a galactic game of cat and mouse with themes of duality we have a 80/20 split. Literally 80% of the game we play as Locke and Osiris thats 12 out of 15 misisons. Chief and Blue Team(you know half of that whole two sides thing) get 3 missions, a mere 20% of the game and one of those missions isn’t even relevant to the plot in any way, shape, or form. Halo 2 had duel protagonists but the split was a solid 50/50, no one hogged the screentime.

Thats the thing, Halo 5 gets a lot of comparisons to Halo 2. And say what you will about who is the better second protagonist Locke or Arbiter thats a story for another day. What is important however is after Bungie faced a now legendary development cycle of time constraints, scrapped concepts and ideas, and more rewrites than you can shake a stick at. Bungie straight up told everyone what happened. The only reason we know any of that is because Bungie owned up to it, they were like “Yeah we had a lot of issues here and here so thats why this is like this” etc. They didn’t have to but they did and I feel like thats not only respectable but also the right thing to do, we know why Halo 2 was a mess in certain areas because Bungie told us why, and now 11 years later we are facing a similar event. I seriously feel that at some point 343i should be upfront and show some transparency with what went on during Halo 5’s development. Its only after all this kind of introspection that best helps someone learn from their mistakes and do better in the future and isn’t that what we all want? A better Halo?

I agree with everything you said… This campaign was horrible…

> 2533274842298668;2:
> I agree with everything you said… This campaign was horrible…

Storywise, but the gameplay was awesome

I have a feeling that the campaign in Halo 5 isn’t over yet. The story pretty much just started at the end of Halo 5. The ending to it was not a traditional cliffhanger, it was the climax of the story and we did not get to see it resolved yet. Bonnie Ross mentioned that there is going to be big Halo news sometime in 2016, which is not related to Halo Wars 2. I have a strong feeling that this big Halo news piece is going to be a second act to Halo 5’s story, since Guardians felt like just half of a story.

I couldn’t agree more. I have always been a huge Halo fan in every area. I received Halo CE as a gift and never looked back! I bet I’ve played through the original at least 50 times. I own all of the novels (which I’ve read numerous times each!), Graphic novels, movies and even a covenant sword hanging on my wall. Hell, its the only reason I buy gaming consoles. I have just now bought the Xbox One just where I could play the newest Halo game. I can honestly say I haven’t been this disappointed in a long time. Halo 5 is a slap in the face to Halo fans like me. They have taken something original and creative and turned it into another Freaking Call of Duty game. I really don’t care for multiplayer other than the Spartan Ops which I could play with my son when he was at his moms house. I’m not sure how many other fans feel the same as me, but I play Halo games for the story and the ability to connect to the characters. 343 has completely taken that away. To me the game feels like half of a game just to make sure that you have to spend another $50-$60 dollars to finish what they’ve started. The trouble with that is I don’t think I’ve invested enough to actually give a -Yoink- any more. I’m sure everyone else has their own ideas as to what went wrong with this release, but in my opinion all of the other issues would be more palatable if the game designers had stuck with the original formula as far as story telling and character development. That’s what made Halo a step above every other gaming franchise.

In the start of Halo 6, Fred, Kelly, Linda, and Osiris (except for Locke) will all die in a horrible battle, leaving Arbiter, Chief, Locke and Half-Jaw. Then the missions will be slit 50/50 between Chief and Arbiter and Locke and Half-Jaw. That would be fun. Or go a three way split between Arbiter, Chief and Locke having each third be the length of a full Halo game, that would please me to make up for the lack of content we got in H5.

Unfortunately, I think the campaign was intentionally designed the way it was designed. I feel they kept it light on content to push more stuff back into later Halo’s. They first said this was a new trilogy, then they retraced their steps and instead said it was a saga. So I feel they are just dragging out the story to make more than just a trilogy.

> 2533274866723773;4:
> I have a feeling that the campaign in Halo 5 isn’t over yet. The story pretty much just started at the end of Halo 5. The ending to it was not a traditional cliffhanger, it was the climax of the story and we did not get to see it resolved yet. Bonnie Ross mentioned that there is going to be big Halo news sometime in 2016, which is not related to Halo Wars 2. I have a strong feeling that this big Halo news piece is going to be a second act to Halo 5’s story, since Guardians felt like just half of a story.

I am feeling something along these lines. They mentioned they wouldn’t be doing story DLC but I don’t think I believe that. Or maybe they said that because it was already in plans and they won’t be doing more after what we get later this year.

I hope, whatever they do, they show some kind of love for campaign soon.
Theater Mode
Scoring (team and ffa)
Matchmaking on Heroic (because achievements and the fact the game was designed for coop)
Bandana Skull (please, it would be fun with the legendary weapons, and 343i invented it in the first place)
Commendations for campaign
Earning EXP in campaign for your SR
Earning RP points (based off of campaign score probably? have to make it not easy to farm like Reach credits)
Oh, and of course, LEGENDARY armor attainable only by beating campaign on Legendary. Possibly even another armor for Solo Legendary.

Adding those things alone will put life back into the campaign, or at least give us an incentive to play it again. Right now, there is not love at all for campaign and I honestly feel that they are discouraging from even trying to play campaign.

I think there will be a second Halo 5 with hopefully a shared multiplayer. After all it does have a subtitle. Why else would it have that? It’s sory only felt like half of a much bigger story.

> 2533274812436771;5:
> I really don’t care for multiplayer other than the Spartan Ops which I could play with my son when he was at his moms house.

Spartan Ops was in Halo 4 not Halo 5.

> 2535463247373246;8:
> I think there will be a second Halo 5 with hopefully a shared multiplayer. After all it does have a subtitle. Why else would it have that? It’s sory only felt like half of a much bigger story.

This is why.

I love Spartan ops

Still a better campaign then Halo 3…/.

I was merely saying that Spartan Ops was really the only type of online gaming I enjoyed. I never specified Halo 4 or 5. Clearly I know it was Halo 4, because we enjoyed it so much. There’s no need to be so pedantic. Jeez.

> 2533274866723773;4:
> I have a feeling that the campaign in Halo 5 isn’t over yet. The story pretty much just started at the end of Halo 5. The ending to it was not a traditional cliffhanger, it was the climax of the story and we did not get to see it resolved yet. Bonnie Ross mentioned that there is going to be big Halo news sometime in 2016, which is not related to Halo Wars 2. I have a strong feeling that this big Halo news piece is going to be a second act to Halo 5’s story, since Guardians felt like just half of a story.

They already sad that they are not going to be adding anything to Halo 5’s campaign they will be focusing all on multiplayer

> 2533274825022855;1:
> Lets be honest here, Halo 5 probably has the or at least one of the weakest campaigns in the series. Sure the gunplay and level design was great(but not without several issues) but the actual story, plot and pacing were pretty bad and I don’t think thats really a controversial statement.
>
> To anyone who has played Halo 5’s campaign its clear that something happened during development. The game just feels like large chucks of it are missing, the plot itself feels very rushed along. The big Cortana reveal is thrown at us in the second mission and a big bad from previous media is killed in the first. The “greatest hunt in gaming history” effectively ends in mission five and the rest of the game is simply hitching a ride and then all drama is shoved in the final three missions. The cutscenes themselves too feel rushed and cut off suddenly and without notice, the most obvious ones to me are Roland’s sudden rant in the beginning of mission three(that never really goes anywhere and is never brought up again) and a moment between Locke and Halsey that just sorta happens and then ends without mush build up or emotion(1:37:04 - 1:37:35).
>
> No matter how you cut it it seriously seems that the entire campaign was apparently reworked before release, the strongest evidence of this has to be the concept art and the marketing for the game. Its no secret that what feels like the majority of concept art for Halo 5 shows something we didn’t get, a game with a lone Chief usually wearing a poncho wandering and fighting though the lands alone, left with seemingly only his emotions. These pieces are too many to simply be abstract concepts and ideas, it feels like this was going to be the major theme and tone of the game at one point. It would explain the E3 2013 trailer very well and would explain the years and years of talk from 343i about tackling Chief’s emotions and finding his humanity(something that Halo 5 oddly enough seems to have almost nothing of).
>
> There is also the marketing campaign for Halo 5, one that hyped up a game with themes and story elements we never really got. The “Hero or Traitor?” tagline was one pushed around for months and months and yet that was barely there in the game. Yeah Chief does go AWOL which in the military is a pretty big deal but as a story element, to the players playing the game its seems so minor its ridiculous. All Chief does is leave…thats it. Thats the big, questionable action that was supposed to make us rethink him? Thats the moment that starts off the “greatest hunt in gaming history” and causes people to question their savior? Thats crazy. There is also these themes of a darker story with ONI coverups and the players being forced to question “what is real?”. Remember the two Locke and Chief ads?
>
> And even if you somehow missed all that, something that literally everyone who has played the game has seen is that for a game that is supposedly all about two sides to the same story, a galactic game of cat and mouse with themes of duality we have a 80/20 split. Literally 80% of the game we play as Locke and Osiris thats 12 out of 15 misisons. Chief and Blue Team(you know half of that whole two sides thing) get 3 missions, a mere 20% of the game and one of those missions isn’t even relevant to the plot in any way, shape, or form. Halo 2 had duel protagonists but the split was a solid 50/50, no one hogged the screentime.
>
> Thats the thing, Halo 5 gets a lot of comparisons to Halo 2. And say what you will about who is the better second protagonist Locke or Arbiter thats a story for another day. What is important however is after Bungie faced a now legendary development cycle of time constraints, scrapped concepts and ideas, and more rewrites than you can shake a stick at. Bungie straight up told everyone what happened. The only reason we know any of that is because Bungie owned up to it, they were like “Yeah we had a lot of issues here and here so thats why this is like this” etc. They didn’t have to but they did and I feel like thats not only respectable but also the right thing to do, we know why Halo 2 was a mess in certain areas because Bungie told us why, and now 11 years later we are facing a similar event. I seriously feel that at some point 343i should be upfront and show some transparency with what went on during Halo 5’s development. Its only after all this kind of introspection that best helps someone learn from their mistakes and do better in the future and isn’t that what we all want? A better Halo?

I agree with a lot of what you say about things seeming rushed with characters like Roland and "Mdama. However, I might just throw it out there that with all the “Hero vs. Traitor” marketing, the tagline was always #huntthetruth, not #huntthechief. From what I can tell “the greatest hunt in gaming history” was the hunt for the truth (which we got throughout the story, mostly on the Blue Team missions).

Would love to see a story expansion or Spartan Ops Season 2 to help fill in a bunch of the blanks left by the story.

This is the first campaign in a long while that legitimately angered me. So disappointing as I thought all of the previous Halo campaigns were excellent.

It will be called Halo 6.
It will be 60.00 'merican.
It will come with guns, but no bullets.
It will only come with Breakout.
It will give you a starter Req pack of bullets.
It will pop up a message in game, giving you an opportunity to purchase more bullets/req packs, every time you reload your weapon.

> 2535449389447310;14:
> > 2533274866723773;4:
> > I have a feeling that the campaign in Halo 5 isn’t over yet. The story pretty much just started at the end of Halo 5. The ending to it was not a traditional cliffhanger, it was the climax of the story and we did not get to see it resolved yet. Bonnie Ross mentioned that there is going to be big Halo news sometime in 2016, which is not related to Halo Wars 2. I have a strong feeling that this big Halo news piece is going to be a second act to Halo 5’s story, since Guardians felt like just half of a story.
>
>
> They already sad that they are not going to be adding anything to Halo 5’s campaign they will be focusing all on multiplayer

They’ve lied and lied and lied before, so who knows.

I totally agree with OP. The campaign feels half-baked and rushed at its best, and was without a doubt the worst in the series. It fails to live up to any of the promises the marketing made. Several 343 devs straight up lied about what we were going to see. Unless there really was a huge last minute rehash like what happened to Destiny, which I honestly kind of hope is true because I don’t want to believe this was the best they could come up with in 3 years. We as a community need to demand that we receive the story were promised before they sweep it under the rug for Halo 6. And this time around they need a new writing team, because Brian Reed has already demonstrated that he is no good for this franchise numerous times. He needs to go. Bring back Joseph Staten or have the guy who wrote Hunt the Truth pen the new Halo 5 script. As long as they are a proven good writer.

> 2533274799557323;17:
> It will be called Halo 6.
> It will be 60.00 'merican.
> It will come with guns, but no bullets.
> It will only come with Breakout.
> It will give you a starter Req pack of bullets.
> It will pop up a message in game, giving you an opportunity to purchase more bullets/req packs, every time you reload your weapon.

Please drink verification can to continue.