New article with some fun Halo 4 info

Link

Some cool stuff, I’ll let you read it and make your own judgement. Though it does confirm that the planet is a shield world (OMG WHAT A SURPRISE! Oh wait… It was obvious…).

Still, take it with a grain of salt.

Thanks for posting this. Every little bit of info raises my excitement level for the game!

No problem! I figured it was worth showing to you guys and girls.

I couldnt get the link to load can you copy the article to this thread?

> I couldnt get the link to load can you copy the article to this thread?

Well it’s a long article, 3 pages long, but sure.

Page 1 :

Crucially, though, Halo 4 will still bring back the awesome sandbox action that made the original such a cult classic and - through Halo 5 and 6 (which have already been planned) - it’ll carry the Xbox’s biggest series into the next generation.

That’s where all the evidence is pointing us based on Microsoft’s reveal at E3 2011, careless dev quotes, and mini-leaks, which have seeped out this year… But it all starts with an ending. Just days after the release of Halo 3, Bungie became an independent studio in exchange for an unspecified sum and the promise of two new Halo games.

This was 2007, and Bungie would hammer out ODST and Reach within three years, forcing Microsoft to hand Halo 4 on to a third party or build a new team from scratch. It’s rumoured Gearbox were briefly in line for the job, having ported Halo CE to PC, but instead Microsoft took the same path that made Forza the world’s best driving game and set about assembling a bespoke, all-star studio: 343 Industries.

Bungie’s content manager Frank O’Connor was headhunted to oversee the Halo franchise, joining staff drawn from Gearbox, Kojima Productions, Treyarch, Lucasarts, id, Rockstar, 2K Marin and more. “We have the unique luxury that every one of the 200 people we hired came to the studio because they wanted to make a Halo game,” says O’Connor, talking with Xbox World. “We’re here to take ownership of a franchise and a universe that we all love.”

The three new Halo games - informally christened the Reclaimer trilogy - are going to be more than a retread of former glories. “We have things to add. That’s going to be one of the difficult transitions for fans of the Bungie games”.
IN WITH THE OLD

Everyone already knows how Halo 4 will handle, after all. “It plays like Halo,” says creative director Josh Holmes, speaking at August’s Halofest event. "That was really important to us and we wanted to maintain that magical Halo feel. At the same time, it

was important for us to take risks and evolve the gameplay so it’s fresh and different.

We had to maintain that commitment to the sandbox nature of Halo gameplay - making sure we’re empowering players to make choices in how they approach each problem instead of giving them only one solution. That was one of the things we held at the core of everything we did." So far, so familiar.

Those new sandbox battles will be deliberately like the ones fought in Halo, rather than the similar-yet-somehow-different firefights from Reach. “Halo’s original campaign was kinda under-designed,” says O’Connor. He means it as a compliment:

“You learn the sandbox at your own pace, and I kinda miss that. It’s something I would like to see come back to the Halo universe. I sometimes feel that modern games are overdesigned - they funnel you into fights when really what you want to do is smell the roses. Halo used to let you do that. As it got more modern, it tended towards more defined encounters and experiences. Reach tries, I think successfully, to make you use all the elements of that sandbox in a very certain, rigorous, action-packed fashion.”

Page 2 :

George Lucas’ obsession with making his two Star Wars trilogies ‘rhyme’ saw him make three stinking movies then return to the Blu-ray release of Return of the Jedi and mess that up, too, but the idea is sound. Matching the story beats of Halo 2 might eventually lead 343 down a dark road, but for now, following the template established by the original Halo will make 343’s take on the series feel like Halo in spite of the changes.

Like the original Halo trilogy, the new Reclaimer trilogy kicks off with an unplanned arrival on an ancient construct unlike anything you’ve seen in a videogame before, as teased by Microsoft’s pre-rendered E3 trailer. Immediately after waking from suspended animation, Master Chief pops thrusters from his armour and jets off through the surviving half of the Forward Unto Dawn.

“There’s some fairly radical modifications to his armour” says O’Connor. “Some of those are an artistic evolution, but some are connected to the story. We just can’t talk about it yet. He’s been in space for a long time.”

Put another way, this might be the first time players have seen the Chief since Halo 3 but it’s not the first time the Chief has been out of that tube. Somewhere between the Ark and the Forerunner world of Sigma 7, The Chief has seen some modifications - but that’s a story for another time and a secret to reveal later. Halo 4 is about restoring a feeling of the unknown to a universe well-exposed by comics, novels, animated movies, and six different games.

The strangely alien Forerunner architecture on the three Halos and the Ark has grown familiar, and it’s only by surprising us visually that Halo 4 will set out its stall as a true successor to the original trilogy. “The most important thing for me in the whole series is the sense of wonder and mystery,” says O’Connor. “We’re definitely going back to that air of exploration, and putting in some surprises that I think people will like.”

The surprises are new weapons, new vehicles, and a brave new world - one that’s been a part of Halo lore from the very beginning. When the Forerunners were building Halos to stop The Flood, they also built Shield Worlds to protect their civilisation and others from the 25,000 light year-range of the seven Halos’ blast.

A colossal Dyson Sphere-like construct, a Shield World is a planet inside another larger sphere. It gives Halo’s new art director Kenneth Scott the chance to draw an entirely artificial sky, to build towers so tall they touch the clouds and, and to hang mile-long structures from the outer sphere itself.

“It’s a different aspect of Forerunner architecture” Scott explained at August’s Halofest event. “The thing that connected people to the first Halo is that mystery, so that’s where a lot of our pressure on the art team is going right now. We want the player to feel that initial experience of discovery.” And there’s lots of room to explore; early art shows a Forerunner world that’s alive and thriving - a world never exposed to the first and only mass Halo activation 100,000 years ago.

Sorry for the double post, I had too many characters in the first post so I needed to put part 3 in its own.

Page 3 :

Halo 4’s official blurb warns of a new but ancient enemy. With the Covenant now allies and the Flood exterminated, that means we can expect to see the rise and fall of an all-new threat in Halo 4, but the Chief won’t be alone in his fight on the artificial planet.

Forza 4’s Autovista Warthog is a model lifted straight from 343’s work on Halo 4 with voiceovers by Cortana, confirming the UNSC’s involvement on the battlefield and Jen Taylor’s involvement as a voice actor.

Somehow, before the Chief even arrives on Sigma 7, the UNSC are already in place, isolated from Humanity’s forces and their new Covenant allies beneath the Shield World’s impenetrable exterior. And if there are Covenant forces stranded on the Shield World too, who’s to say anyone got the memo about the war being over? The Covenant and humanity are all smiles and handshakes elsewhere but beneath the steely shield, both factions will be isolated and alone.

And Cortana? Like Master Chief, she’s been through some changes since we saw her in the last Halo, and in her case they’re not for the better. “Seven years is the lifespan for a smart AI before it enters a state called rampancy,” O’Connor says.

“Cortana was getting close to the end of her natural lifespan at the end of Halo 3 but she has been exposed to far more information than any other AI in existence. She’s going to develop some muscle from that process but it also contributes to her rampancy - that much information makes things worse.”

Expect the “worse” part to play out in Halo 5. If Combat Evolved is the standard then Halo 4 (A New Hope) will climax with the destruction of Sigma 7 itself - a major victory before the inevitable setbacks of Halo 5’s (Empire Strikes Back) bleak middle and Halo 6’s (Return of the Jedi) triumph against all odds.

It worked for Star Wars, it worked for Halo’s first trilogy, and it’ll work again as another Halo trilogy plays out over two console generations. Like the originals, it’s a story you’ll start on one generation of Xbox but finish on another. However, even with a new team, a new story and a whole new world, Halo 4 retains that grand sci-fi opera feel, and that’s what excites us the most.

I <3 Frankie

Although none of that was new, it was wrapped up in a nice package. Good read.

And I like the Star Wars refernces

> Although none of that was new, it was wrapped up in a nice package. Good read.
>
> And I like the Star Wars refernces

I had a feeling that it was all old stuff, though there were a few things I hadn’t heard before that I figured others might want to check out in case they missed it too.

And yeah, the Star Wars reference really gave it an interesting touch.

I believe pretty firmly that the writer of this article has no idea what he is talking about.

Campaign should be fun if we can explore. They might even get rid of these ridiculous soft kill zones in Reach.

The direct reference to the forerunner world, Sigma 7 was pretty interesting.

> The direct reference to the forerunner world, Sigma 7 was pretty interesting.

People,

DON’T GET EXCITED.

This is complete speculation based on lousy sources. Until 343 will say otherwise, this article means nothing. The things that are written there are silly at best.

“Halo 4 will bring Master Chief back from the dead, see Cortana start to lose the plot, and feature alien worlds the likes of which you’ve never seen on any console ever - where bitter wars between the Covenant and humanity are still raging.”

This is the most uplifting thing I’ve read in many, many years.

I’m not excited, I just think its interesting the writer named it specifically.

> I believe pretty firmly that the writer of this article has no idea what he is talking about.

Agreed, hence why I said to take it with a grain of salt :wink:

I definetly got my hopes up after reading that finaly halo will return to what made it awesome, also when he was talking about it following a star wars format that seemed very interesting and would be awesome in the new halo trilogy, also I am definetly telling my friends using ps3 to get the xbox 720 when/if it comes out

> “Halo 4 will bring Master Chief back from the dead, see Cortana start to lose the plot, and feature alien worlds the likes of which you’ve never seen on any console ever - where bitter wars between the Covenant and humanity are still raging.”
>
> This is the most uplifting thing I’ve read in many, many years.

That part specifically (and Sigma 7) showed me that the whole article is speculation.

I thought Sigma 7 was fake… interesting. And also interesting, is how the Covenant could somehow be involved in Halo 4. The UNSC and Covenant, trapped under the surface, not having word of the war being over at the destruction of the Ark. Another interesting thing in the article was that it said the Chief had been out of his cryopod while the ship has been drifting. Can’t wait for a game or book to explain this (if its true).

It was a great article. I posted a reply as there were some mistakes. I am lazy so here is the cut and paste. It is written directed at the article writer so it may sound odd:

For anyone not wanting spoilers of Halo: Glasslands, and somewhat Halo: Cryptum you have been warned.
When you talk about a new ancient threat, you are correct in that the antagonist(s) will be “new” to the games, but probably not new to the universe. The likelihood is that the Precursor “race” will become far more involved this time around, and likely an enemy. Yes, Precursor, not Forerunner. Forerunners will likely make an appearance in some way, but I doubt they will be fully flushed out, at least not in the first game. I expect that the Forerunners will bee explained greatly, but that the Precursors, the equivalent of the Forerunners to the Forerunners, or some aspect of their time in the universe, will be the enemy. We learn in Halo: Cryptum that the Forerunners had captured and imprisoned what was believed to be the last precursor, and that he/she/it is very angry. Though thought of as deities to the Forerunners via their history, the evidence in Cryptum is to the contrary via this imprisonment.
That said, one could also argue that the Forerunners, if they have survived in the sphere this long, have split into factions, and that their is a Forerunner civil war raging on within the sphere. Forerunners could both be ally and enemy. Either way, expect involvement of both the Forerunners, and likely the Precursors, where new “races” may be introduced, but their overall existence falls within established cannon, at least distantly.
Another point to make is against the Covenant being buddy-buddy with humans. Glasslands shows readers the exact opposite, and that, although some are working towards peace, members of both sides are attempting to stage coops and finish the other off. Do not expect to see humans and elites fighting side-by-side. If anything, expect a race against a common enemy, while still fighting each other (similar to the flood). That is not to say that isolated UNSC/Covanant forces unknown to the war ending are not still fighting, but the explanation to this argument in your article is likely false.
Which brings me to the last point. When the warthog appears in Forza 4, it is indeed from the Halo 4 “make and model”. This does not directly connect the UNSC to the battle in the sphere. John is on a UNSC ship, or at least half of it, and the vehicle hangar is his half. It is likely a Hog from his ship. It is unlikely that the UNSC is fighting already inside this sphere, because the plan for the sphere in Halo 4 is discovery, mystery and unknowns, much like you have written. If the UNSC is already there, if John meets up with them there won’t be much mystery after his briefing, or at least a lot will be flushed out.
I greatly enjoyed the article, but only wanted to make some clarifications from Glasslands and some points derived from Cryptum.