This is unprecedented, unacceptable(Theater)

This information is now official(according to the latest bulletin), therefore not leaked. Also, I believe the embargo is up.

Fitting Cutscene

Changing of the Guard

The main aim of this thread is not only to increase user awareness of the issue at hand, but to also point out to 343i that one of the most interesting community organizations is under threat from falling into the great abyss completely.

343i, if you don’t know, has taken the unprecedented step of removing any Campaign or Spartan Ops based theater mode, a mainstay feature in Bungie games, from Halo 4.

Alright, although this has been known for some time, it was officially confirmed today that Campaign Theater is out. Although there are also more features that aren’t in regarding Campaign which I currently can’t talk about, the main issue here has already been identified.

Loss of one of the sacred rings…

A lack of Campaign Theater is one of the biggest setbacks to any Halo, in history. It throws the game back to pre-Halo 3. How a 5 year old game can have better features than Halo 4 is beyond me.

-No more Campaign Screenshots
-No more exploring the Campaign in theater mode
-3rd Person View gone
-Speed Running is dead (I will explain why later)

Gone. Think about it.

Are you questioning my decision?

Have you guys ever heard of High Speed Halo? You know, the community organization that has been frequently posting speed runs on Waypoint’s front page for the past few months.

Well, their admin, NOKYARD, has this to say about the crisis at hand.

Note: This has been edited to fit the character limit.

Read the whole thread:
http://highspeedhalo.net/?page_id=3805/speed-run-general-discussion/if-this-is-true-halo-4-is-not-something-to-look-forward-to-here/

> The intention is to demonstrate how cutting legacy features can have a devastating effect on long time fan-based communities, similar to how removing the game’s API can shut down communities like HaloCharts. For those who are not familiar, the High Speed Halo site is graciously hosted by HBO and was started in early 2004 by HBO members shortly after the Going Nowhere Fast competition. The goal of the site may seem competitive in nature, but it is actually a source of highly entertaining and informative gameplay videos, where our stable of talented runners cooperate to bring the Campaign Mission times down, as an outlet to express our love of the game, the series, and the makers of the game.
>
> {PERSON WHO SAID IT WASN’T IMPORTANT}
> Originally Posted by Woorloog:
> Or a capture card.
>
>
> High Speed Halo has processed nearly 200 Reach speed runs. We had assumed CEA would bring back many of the old runners and a new breed of runners eager to bring down the old records. When it was announced there would be no Theater mode we were disappointed but figured we would still receive a large number of runs from players with HD capturing rigs.
>
> Do you know how many Halo CEA speed runs we received?
>
> Two.
>
> That’s right, TWO! Our entire gallery of CEA runs contains two Heroic runs submitted by ferlodergarnil.
>
> The next issue is barriers to entry and this includes video capture.
>
> With Halo CE and Halo 2 runners weren’t even required to subscribe to XBL. They would keep the VCR running while they made their speed run attempts. When you ran out of tape you would rewind and try again. Runners actually mailed VHS, Betamax, and DVD±R Halo CE and Halo 2 runs to Cody Miller and myself. Cody even had the means to read out of region DVDs.
>
> SD capture cards could be had for $20 to $30, and recordable DVDs could be ripped with MPEGStreamclip (free software) and other screen cap programs for Halo PC and Halo2 Vista. Halo 3 saw these devices tossed out and never replaced by the average player since we offered to capture and host their runs in 720p. With Halo 3 and beyond you were required to subscribe to XBL but with theatre available there were workarounds for players who couldn’t afford XBL.
>
> Now, anyone wishing to participate must purchase an expensive HD capture card (there is no way we are going back to SD quality) and have the bandwidth available to upload multi-gigabyte video files. Not to mention the fact that i would have to up my bandwidth cap (wtf!! Canadian ISPs) because i have to download the run and upload to the HSH YouTube account.
>
> Is this the end for High Speed Halo?
>
> Pretty sure it is, but i’m going to wait until the other admins get back to me.
>
> Who knows, there may be some compelling aspect of the game we’re not yet seeing.
>
> cheers
> nok

I shall relay your decision, to the council…

-High Speed Halo is one of the most beloved Halo community organizations.

-Unless Waypoint and the rest of the Halo community pressure 343i into putting Theater back into the Campaign, we WILL see the demise of High Speed Halo.

-Please share your thoughts and/or support.

-Yoink- This -Yoink-

Walks Away From Halo 4

First of all, I understand and know very well that Theater is a Convenience, not a Need, for speed running. There are problems with this, but these are problems we MUST face with Halo 4.

If you want a ton of good things, you need to sacrifice it. I’m sure they gave it much thought then they kicked out theater for campaign and SO for more RAM.

I don’t think we even need to complain to see it back on Halo 5 and 6.

However, to the problems we have right now - Take your example of the CEA Speed run. (Ignoring the fact that we have a thing called youtube.) HighSpeedHalo, a community <mark>I’ve never heard of till now</mark>, runs speed runs. They submit them using theater mode, because most people don’t have/can’t afford capture cards here. My first point (Not trying to be Mitt Romney, but…) is that if people were really dedicated to speed runs (Naked Eli, for example), or any type of video creation using game software, use capture cards. I have a Dazzle, and I have a Blackmagic Intensity. On your site, you had 2 speed runs from a guy with a capture card.

Wait. What?

Your site was formed by Speed runners, right? So why exactly aren’t the site creators uploading? Is it because you’re too poor? In which case, how did you afford the game and all the other stuff? Or is it because they aren’t speed runners?

Next, campaign screenie’s, exploring, all those stuff. We lose’em. That is sad. But this doesn’t stop people from making video’s. People who glitch the game, they use capture cards. Machinima makers, they use capture cards.

In the end, it comes down to ‘Either you’re dedicated to this, or you wait for Halo 5 and 6 so your casualness can finally be used.’

Personally, I don’t see the problem with putting a iPhone 5 camera in front of your screen as you speed run. If you can’t do it with a phone below your chin, you won’t do it.

So while I think it was sad they had to take it out for more space, I also think of it as a necessity. It’s like getting ‘worse’ internet, but this causes you to still ahve internet, instead of losing it. Trust me, 343 aren’t stupid, nor do they ignore your cries. But they are creating a game not just for speed runners, but for everyone, even President Barack Obama in his spare time.

Don’t worry; Halo 5 and 6 will be back. And if you simply aren’t dedicated enough to buy a capture card, I don’t see why you would want to continue.

BS Angel stated in the newest Bulletin that there’ll be an update in the future adding that option to theatre.

> First of all, I understand and know very well that Theater is a Convenience, not a Need, for speed running. There are problems with this, but these are problems we MUST face with Halo 4.
>
> If you want a ton of good things, you need to sacrifice it. I’m sure they gave it much thought then they kicked out theater for campaign and SO for more RAM.
>
> I don’t think we even need to complain to see it back on Halo 5 and 6.
>
>
>
> However, to the problems we have right now - Take your example of the CEA Speed run. (Ignoring the fact that we have a thing called youtube.) HighSpeedHalo, a community <mark>I’ve never heard of till now</mark>, runs speed runs. They submit them using theater mode, because most people don’t have/can’t afford capture cards here. My first point (Not trying to be Mitt Romney, but…) is that if people were really dedicated to speed runs (Naked Eli, for example), or any type of video creation using game software, use capture cards. I have a Dazzle, and I have a Blackmagic Intensity. On your site, you had 2 speed runs from a guy with a capture card.
>
> Wait. What?
>
> Your site was formed by Speed runners, right? So why exactly aren’t the site creators uploading? Is it because you’re too poor? In which case, how did you afford the game and all the other stuff? Or is it because they aren’t speed runners?
>
>
> Next, campaign screenie’s, exploring, all those stuff. We lose’em. That is sad. But this doesn’t stop people from making video’s. People who glitch the game, they use capture cards. Machinima makers, they use capture cards.
>
>
> In the end, it comes down to ‘Either you’re dedicated to this, or you wait for Halo 5 and 6 so your casualness can finally be used.’
>
> Personally, I don’t see the problem with putting a iPhone 5 camera in front of your screen as you speed run. If you can’t do it with a phone below your chin, you won’t do it.
>
>
> So while I think it was sad they had to take it out for more space, I also think of it as a necessity. It’s like getting ‘worse’ internet, but this causes you to still ahve internet, instead of losing it. Trust me, 343 aren’t stupid, nor do they ignore your cries. But they are creating a game not just for speed runners, but for everyone, even President Barack Obama in his spare time.
>
> Don’t worry; Halo 5 and 6 will be back. And if you simply aren’t dedicated enough to buy a capture card, I don’t see why you would want to continue.

Theater was a crucial part of speed running. It only required several people, or maybe just one person, to have a capture card.

And now you all need a capture card.

That’s really…it, for speed running. You guys are thinking a bit more like you’re at the center of the world. If you aren’t dedicated enough to get a capture card, don’t do speed runs until Halo 5.

I know machinima makers who’d be mad, and they can cope.

I just read there’s a possibility these things will be added in future updates.

> First of all, I understand and know very well that Theater is a Convenience, not a Need, for speed running. There are problems with this, but these are problems we MUST face with Halo 4.

It is a need for speed running. A need.

Most people do not have capture cards, and timing/editing adds hours of unnecessary effort. People won’t bother, like CEA.
You cannot easily verify to time a run anymore.

The community manager has clearly stated all the major problems, please read his posts again. The community cannot survive in 2012 without theater mode at the minimum.

> And now you all need a capture card.
>
> That’s really…it, for speed running. You guys are thinking a bit more like you’re at the center of the world. If you aren’t dedicated enough to get a capture card, don’t do speed runs until Halo 5.
>
> I know machinima makers who’d be mad, and they can cope.

No, it isn’t.

Please read both NOKYARD’s post on NeoGaf and the High Speed Halo post.

A capture card not only is very expensive, but it requires special software for conversion, a timer that must be perfect, post game carnage report to confirm its legitimacy etc

None of these are in Halo 4, at all. How can they even do LASO runs? Someone can easily edit out two different games, stick them together during a black screen, and no one will notice. I.e, turn on all the skulls, and switch with fewer skulls turned on in his attempt. Very hard to notice with a number of skulls.

How they record this game play?
Who will verify it?

Speed Running is not machinima. Machinima is done via capture card because the makers have no other choice. Speed running is different. It is where random community members should be easily able to send in game play.

Speed Running requires a group of people who like a game to be able to send game play videos of campaign missions.

By removing all these features, you have successfully killed off 97% of the community from posting. Most people won’t even bother, can’t afford it, or can’t even accept the speed run because there is often very little way to tell whether it is fake or not. People have tried, the post game carnage report was often what stopped them from succeeding.

That is what happened with CEA, and that is what will happen with Halo 4. No incentive to beat the times when the submission process ends up becoming crazily hard.

CEA had none of these features, like Halo 4.

Reach had most of them.

Number of Reach submissions: 200
CEA: 2. Yes, only 2.

Without theater, timer, pgcr etc, Speed Running will die.

I don’t care about this or enjoy it.

But I support your case. It’s foolish to offer a feature people like then just take it away, with no good reason.

Just when I thought that Theater mode could be even more downgraded from Reach…

> > First of all, I understand and know very well that Theater is a Convenience, not a Need, for speed running. There are problems with this, but these are problems we MUST face with Halo 4.
>
> It is a need for speed running. A need.
>
> Most people do not have capture cards, and timing/editing adds hours of unnecessary effort. People won’t bother, like CEA.
> You cannot easily verify to time a run anymore.
>
> The community manager has clearly stated all the major problems, please read his posts again. The community cannot survive in 2012 without theater mode at the minimum.

The community can survive. Take Naked Eli for example.

He uses a capture card. Tons of people view his stuff. Those ‘tons of people’ are a community, and Naked Eli is like, 1 person. But he still uses a capture card.

And then, take you for example. Instead of complaining about something that 1. Won’t be in the game anyways 2. Will be in Halo 5/6 unless 343 are monkeys, why don’t you get a capture card?

> Most people do not have capture cards, and timing/editing adds hours of unnecessary effort. People won’t bother, like CEA.
> You cannot easily verify to time a run anymore.

A community that is lazy because people are saying ‘pics or -Yoink-’ doesn’t seem to be a good community. If people won’t bother, then obviously Speed Running is gonna be doomed to die.

Unless, of course, everyone made an effort and actually got a cheap capture card, made a video, and uploaded it. Timing? Oh, right. Didn’t know you could use a stopwatch. Naked Eli gets support from tons of speed runners, and yet, you are sitting here claiming that Speed Running will die without theater.

Trust me, it won’t. What YOU really want is a bit of laziness in speed running. That’s the truth in it.

Sigh

I’m not saying Theater gone is a good thing, but know that if speed running dies, it’s not gonna be because of Theater being gone, but because people aren’t making the effort. Timing? We have clock’s. Verification of no edits? All you need is a camera that records both you, your controller and the screen.

> The community can survive. Take Naked Eli for example.
>
> He uses a capture card. Tons of people view his stuff. Those ‘tons of people’ are a community, and Naked Eli is like, 1 person. But he still uses a capture card.

A few people having capture cards is not a community. You are conveniently forgetting that hundreds of other submissions that can no longer occur or be verfied.

If getting a capture card was so easy, why did only 2 CEA runs in total get submitted.

Answer: It isn’t.

> And then, take you for example. Instead of complaining about something that 1. Won’t be in the game anyways 2. Will be in Halo 5/6 unless 343 are monkeys, why don’t you get a capture card?

I’m not a speed runner, I don’t need a capture card. Instead of making a personally aimed comment, why don’t you address the overwhelming amount of information against your argument?

> A community that is lazy because people are saying ‘pics or Yoink!’ doesn’t seem to be a good community. If people won’t bother, then obviously Speed Running is gonna be doomed to die.

Are… you serious? Accusing a community for being lazy when verifying speed runs? Accusing them of being a bad community?

> Unless, of course, everyone made an effort and actually got a cheap capture card, made a video, and uploaded it.

If you actually read NOKYARD’s post, you would know it is nowhere near as simple as that.

> Timing? Oh, right. Didn’t know you could use a stopwatch. Naked Eli gets support from tons of speed runners, and yet, you are sitting here claiming that Speed Running will die without theater.

Again, you have clearly failed to read NOKYARD’s post.

A stop watch is a terrible way to time. Did you read his example? Flood gate, where two runners had the same time, but one was actually a lot longer overall because his Xbox lagged in black screen? Halo 3 had an excellent timer which did not include this. Are you seriously expecting people in a highly close and fast community such as this to use a stop watch when it can never give an truly accurate reading?

> Trust me, it won’t. What YOU really want is a bit of laziness in speed running. That’s the truth in it.

No, it isn’t. Speed Running after Halo 3 exploded. Despite having only a few runners with SIMPLE SD capture cards pre Halo 3, almost anyone could do it there after.

The community isn’t lazy, don’t generalize an entire community because you think that putting hours and hours of effort into a 3 hour speed run is worth it.

Nobody will have the incentive, the random gamer can’t participate. The community will die.

> Verification of no edits? All you need is a camera that records both you, your controller and the screen.

Yes, lets have 3 cameras now. Never-mind the speed runners, it’s not like hours of editing, timing, submission, and verification was enough, now you want them to video themselves.

Because for a 3 minute speed run where someone beats the previous record by 1 second is going to work without the features missing in Halo 4.

lol how do u think they made all the trailers for spratan ops

> lol how do u think they made all the trailers for spratan ops

Developer recorders? Also, Spartan Ops trailers are CGI.

And the latest bulletin ruled out Campaign and Spartan Ops from Theatre compatibility completely.

Unless an update comes…which is what this thread is trying to push.

Ya, I hope it is included in an update like Frankie hinted.

The only thing I’ll say on this is that there are TWO Discs. So why would theater be cut from Campaign/Spartan Ops?

Seriously, with two discs they should have easily been able to do this. I LOVE going into campaign and just exploring the missions for fun, without having to fight. And my gawd, the screenshots and films we could capture from this? It would be epic indeed.

I/we shouldn’t have to by a capture card for this.

I"m on board with everything else 343 has done. This just makes me sad for losing this facet of campaign…

I truly hope there is an update down the road. Vital or not to some for whatever reasons, theater in campaign is just plain FUN!

Okay, onto the next topic…

> Loss of one of the sacred rings…
>
> A lack of Campaign Theater is one of the biggest setbacks to any Halo, in history. It throws the game back to pre-Halo 3. How a 5 year old game can have better features than Halo 4 is beyond me.
>
> -No more Campaign Screenshots
> -No more exploring the Campaign in theater mode
> -<mark>3rd Person View gone</mark>
> -Speed Running is dead (I will explain why later)

Not entirely. When I used to live with no Theater in Halo 3 (I didn’t have a hard drive), I would use a vehicle for the 3rd person perspective. Granted my choices in battle were limited but I was able to get a lot of decent footage.

Though most of the time, I had to spend my time with the setup work due to the difficulty in managing AI. For instance, 4 Arbiters on Legendary. If I want them to fight the Brutes, I have to hide since they often get knocked off (and won’t respawn unless I’m looking away) and the enemies can easily kill me. Now imagine this in Halo 4. It’d be lame having to miss out on the action.

Anyways, I am certainly disappointed with the lack of campaign theater. This player’s tricking work wouldn’t have nearly been as thorough if it weren’t for Theater (of course, he’d still probably manage it since he’s been doing this stuff since CE, but it’d have taken some time).

The lack of campaign theater means we have to spend a lot of time developing the setup, and that’s bad because setup work can be inconvenient, time consuming, frustrating, etc.

I.e. moving a bunch of AI from one location to another

The real fun is getting a result out of the setup and refining our methods.

This Neogaf post sums up my thoughts quite well:

> There is a lot of entertaining content that comes from campaign theater. Between speedruns, fail videos and plain odd things happening, if you don’t have something recording at all times, it didn’t happen. Our friends at Rooter Teeth have people send in tons of content using theater that ends up driving tons of traffic to their videos that is basically free marketing for Halo.
>
> One of the coolest features of theater was that at any comedic fail you could look at different angles that would help explain puzzling things that happened. That is gone, even if you have a great capture card/device.
>
> It is odd that they have really seemed to promote things that utilize these features on Waypoint (Fails of the Weak, HSH) and yet they are pulling the rug out at the same time.

It’s not just speedrunning, it’s everyone who likes using Theatre in Campaign. What a horrid, illogical decision of the part of 343i. I shouldn’t be surprised. They’ve been sacrificing quite a few things we’ve all come to enjoy from the previous games.

> Ya, I hope it is included in an update like Frankie hinted.

Me too.

For some reason, ever since Halo 3, Theatre seems to get worse, like in Reach, and now Halo 4.

Games such as Black Ops 2 are vastly improving their theatre modes at the same time.

It is a big disappointment, unfortunately. Campaign screenshots would have been incredible.