Guess Apple boss Steve Jobs had a very good reason for being upset at Microsoft's purchase of Halo creators Bungie: according to a former Bungie staffer, Apple had itself been on the verge of buying the now-famous developer.
Former project lead Tuncer Deniz has told Develop that Bungie's big cheese had, around the turn of millennium, "asked Apple if they were interested in buying us". Former Microsoft man Ed Fries says this was because the developer "was in a bit of financial trouble". This was a decade ago, before Halo, when Bungie's main claim to fame was as the developer of the Marathon series, a cult favourite shooter franchise on the Mac.
Although Steve Jobs initially passed on the offer, Deniz says the Apple boss quickly changed his mind, and had his senior vice president of worldwide product marketing Phil Schiller get in touch with Bungie to seal the deal.
It was only then that Schiller found out Bungie, who had been in talks with more than just Apple, had already signed a deal with Microsoft. Cue Steve Jobs, who had assumed Bungie was his to buy, going bananas.
Interesting. This is definitely one of those watershed moments in gaming history. Imagine an Xbox without Halo. Or an Apple with a super-talented video game studio under its roof. It'd sound like a bizarro world had it not come so close to actually happening!