Your First Look at Halo 4

Last week at Microsoft's Spring Showcase, I and a whole bunch of other reporters got our first look at this fall's Halo 4. The fourth proper entry in the franchise (not counting ODST and Reach) will be released this fall, and will feature longtime series star Master Chief in an all-new adventure.

Halo 4 will be the first Halo game not made by Bungie, who created the series ten years ago. Instead, the game is being created by 343 Industries. At the event, 343's Frank O'Connor and Kiki Wolfkill showed us the above video, and shared some information about the coming game. Vague information, but information nonetheless.

The first thing they showed us was Master Chief himself, whose armor has been slightly redesigned for the new game. (If you recall, the armor he was wearing in the game's E3 debut last year wasn't his final, official look.) We'd already seen an action figure depicting Chief's new look, and this screenshot confirms his lighter, more flexible new armor.

Illustration for article titled Your First Look at Halo 4

The video above is mostly a bunch of the Halo 4 team talking about (surprise!) how totally awesome they think Halo is, but you can get a sense of the multiplayer from watching it. It sounds as though multiplayer will be tied more to the fiction this time around, with a story-based reason explaining why so many spartans are duking it out all over the galaxy.

The maps won't be lifted from the campaign but rather have been created specifically to allow for balanced gameplay. When asked about balancing the multiplayer for MLG pro-gaming, O'Connor said that they are taking MLG seriously, but didn't go into detail as to what exactly that meant.


In multiplayer, characters will control Spartan 4s, which are a new type of Spartan super-soldier; there will be a wealth of customization options for your Spartan. Some of those options will be cosmetic, but some will be functional.

Illustration for article titled Your First Look at Halo 4

As for the solo campaign, O'Connor and Wolfkill remained tight-lipped. O'connor did say that this is going to be "a more personal sory," but that he "wouldn't expect Master Chief to start chatting people up or anything." They repeated several times that they have ripped everything apart and all of the game's features had been either rebuilt from the ground up or massively overhauled.

There will be new sound effects, some of which we got to hear as Wolfkill walked around an empty multiplayer level—the guns sounded punchy and clear, and her Spartan's footsteps were loud and metallic. Longtime Halo composer Marty O'Donnell isn't on the game, and they said that there will be more information about the composer soon.


They also hinted at some sort of coming announcement that will be a "crossing of the rubicon" for the Halo series. While hype is hype and blind items are blind, it did sound as though they are convinced that some aspect of Halo 4 will be seen as a large change to the core of the series.

This game, O'Connor said, would "define the next ten years of Halo." Sounds ambitious. We'll have more information on Halo 4 as it slowly…trickles…out… leading up to release of the game this fall.


Good to see ya chief
still finishing that good fight;
dig the kicky duds

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So now that we are about to get our 7th game (I think i'm correct on that number Halo, Halo 2, Halo 3, Halo: ODST, Halo Reach, Halo Wars) in the Halo universe, I have to ask....

Does anyone still highly anticipate this games release? I remember enjoying Halo very much, I played Halo 2 the most that I have ever played a competitive shooter. However, after Halo 3 came out the series began to become very stale to me. I still bought every game just to see the story and play a little multiplayer, but I have become much more uninterested.

My prediction will be that this game will come out to a somewhat ill received launch, and a year down the road another poor halo game will be put out and that will be the end of the franchise.

It's unfortunate too, Halo and Halo 2 are on the top 50 list for my favorite games ever. This shows what milking a franchise dry does.