Bungie: Story of Halo Held Them Back

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Bungie: Story of Halo Held Them Back

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A creative director at Bungie said that Halo Reach has the benefit of not being stapled to a story like Halo 2 and 3 were.

Because the first Halo was such a huge hit, said Bungie creative director Marcus Lehto, the designers felt they had to continue with the story in the sequels. There were many gameplay ideas the designers wanted to implement but couldn't because the story didn't support them. Bungie is avoiding that problem with Halo Reach, which focuses on a smaller event in the backstory of the Halo universe. The designers were able to come up with fun scenarios and missions for the campaign and then mold the story around them. But there are parts of the game which may piss off "hardcore fans" of the series. Halo Reach is due out sometime this year.

"[Halo Reach] doesn't have the burden of continuing a story like Halo 2 and 3 had to carry," Lehto said. "It was a true burden for us when we were making those games, because we sometimes wanted to do something but couldn't because the story wouldn't let us, or we had to support this giant steamroller of a story."

"The approach we took to the campaign is a major turnaround from how we did it before," added Bungie executive producer Joseph Tung. "Earlier on we came up with a modular story, a wrapper, and instead of trying to write a linear narrative for the story that missions have to adhere to, we lived with the wrapper for a while and came up with a bunch of crazy ideas for missions and then fit them into the wrapper."

Lehto added, "We are very sensitive to the Halo canon, and we are careful not to be stomping on the Halo timeline. We're playing to the events of the book." The book refers to the novel Halo: The Fall of Reach by Eric Nylund which was released shortly after the first Halo and details the story of Master Chief's orgins and the vitrification of a planet's landmasses, turning them into glass, by the Covenant.

"There might be certain things the hardcore fans will take issue with [in Halo Reach]," Tung said. "But there will be other things that will make them absolutely delighted."

Source: Edge

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Well, that's certainly a unique take on that interview Greg Tito.

Most people seem to be focusing on the "may anger hardcore fans" aspect.

EDIT: Hopefully you haven't doomed this thread to elitists feigning surprise that Halo has a story while more enlightened or open-minded individuals calling their surprise unfounded and troll-like, with the discussion quickly escalating to a battle filled with more flames and unfounded self-righteousness than the Human-Covenant War.

As long as its not a complete waste of $60.00 like ODST was I think I will let Bungie/Microsoft live to see another sunset.

At least now we may get some innovation and something to prevent Halo from being identical to umpteen other generic FPS.

What story? Halo's "story" is "here is a generic space marine shooting aliens." That's it.

All the money from the second and third games was a burden?

All joking aside, it would be nice to see some character development, or at least gameplay variety, in the next Halo game. I wonder if different Spartans will have different abilities.

I can't wait until they do something that isn't Halo. Bungie is such a great studio, and Halo has so much love poured into it, but it's time to do something new.

I'm excited to see any new IP come from them. Halo in general I'm kinda burned out on.

I don't get why developers don't write out the whole story (or, at least, the basics of it) when designing a trilogy. Surely it will make the process smoother as you don't need to worry about story when making the new games, as well as avoiding confusing plotlines?

I'm genuinely shocked. I never played Halo 2, but Halo 3's narrative was an incoherent, incomprehensible mess. I just figured that the design of the story went something along the lines of "Something, anything, to stick to this money-printing, guaranteed-popular mulitplayer game." The idea that they cut out what they thought were interesting ideas for the sake of the story is just...wow.

To most people in thread:
Yes, Halo had a story.
We weren't allowed to know it though, they kept it to themselves.

Which makes the whole thing kind of ridiculous...

You cant say all that, and not say anything about these new feature. It's pointless otherwise!!!

RanD00M:
Halo has a story.Well,I guess you learn something new everyday.

I call your surprise unfounded and troll-like.

Seriously though, for all everyone like's to slag off Halo's lack of story, it really is no way near as lacking as other games like Gears or Killzone. The dialogue's sharp and quotable, the universe is interesting, and I think a lot of people don't give enough credit to Bungie for the way they worked in all the religious symbolism, and its implications on matters such as blind-faith, dogmatism, holy wars, etc.

awww boo who. you felt you had to make a sequel, well isnt it your job to make games?

Oh, the people making jokes about how suprised they are that Halo has a story. Aren't you so witty? Aren't you so marvelous?

OT: Sounds good to me. I'm looking forward to them exploring more possible scenarios in the game.

j-e-f-f-e-r-s:

RanD00M:
Halo has a story.Well,I guess you learn something new everyday.

I call your surprise unfounded and troll-like.

Seriously though, for all everyone like's to slag off Halo's lack of story, it really is no way near as lacking as other games like Gears or Killzone. The dialogue's sharp and quotable, the universe is interesting, and I think a lot of people don't give enough credit to Bungie for the way they worked in all the religious symbolism, and its implications on matters such as blind-faith, dogmatism, holy wars, etc.

*facepalm* Sorry but I forgot to add at the end of my post "/sarcasm".

I was being sarcastic.

I do know that there is a story. But it's so not present that you could just as well skip it.

T'Generalissimo:
I never played Halo 2, but Halo 3's narrative was an incoherent, incomprehensible mess.

Is it unreasonable for writers of direct sequels to expect familiarity with the plot, settings, and characters from previous installments?

If you missed Halo 2 you also wouldn't know about the Arbiter, Commander Miranda Keyes, the Prophet of Truth, the Brutes, Delta Halo, the Great Schism, the Forerunner Keyship, or the Gravemind and Cortana on High Charity before playing Halo 3. I can see why you'd be confused.

RanD00M:

j-e-f-f-e-r-s:

RanD00M:
Halo has a story.Well,I guess you learn something new everyday.

I call your surprise unfounded and troll-like.

Seriously though, for all everyone like's to slag off Halo's lack of story, it really is no way near as lacking as other games like Gears or Killzone. The dialogue's sharp and quotable, the universe is interesting, and I think a lot of people don't give enough credit to Bungie for the way they worked in all the religious symbolism, and its implications on matters such as blind-faith, dogmatism, holy wars, etc.

*facepalm* Sorry but I forgot to add at the end of my post "/sarcasm".

I was being sarcastic.

I do know that there is a story. But it's so not present that you could just as well skip it.

No worries man. I was joking around with something Eldritch Warlord said anyway. I'd never argue that Halo has a 'great' story, but there's a lot to be recommended about the universe and the way Bungie constructed it.

Can we please suspend everyone that says Halo has no story? Most of these people probably haven't even played all of the trilogy, so therefore can not comment.

Anyway, I'm happy about this, I'm a Bungie fanboy, I must admit, and I'm happy they've got freedom some to do some cooler stuff with the gameplay and such.

Also, anyone seen the leaked photos? Elites still make me facepalm, want my Halo 2 Elite back.

j-e-f-f-e-r-s:
but there's a lot to be recommended about the universe and the way Bungie constructed it.

I will not deny that the Halo universe in interesting,and it could be so much more then Bungie makes it.

I'm sorry but Bungie need to run more ad campaigns and showcase these "new features" for their new game for their own good. I haven't seen any Halo reach trailers and I have no idea how it is different from the other games. The halo 3 trailer was shown in every channel from Cartoon Network to the ones your parents don't know you have access to.

And why the hell was Bungie so concerned with not ruining the Halo story yet they fucked up the weapon balance, too much concentrated efforts?

Oh Halo Reach! You had me at "may piss off 'hardcore fans'"

Nothing like the smell of troll bait in the morning

In terms of the article, its nice to see Bungie taking Halo in a new direction. As long as it improves on whatever ODST was supposed to be, I'll check it out....probably

Not worth a buy in my opinion. Got 1, 2, and 3 but i dont think i will be able to buy this one. I played a friends copy of ODST, and that was awful. I dont think i can trust bungie again.

Dayum rite, it was about damn time they dropped master chief...
Oh wait, they didn't.
Goddamnit.
Anyway, I hope they at least do something different this time.

slowpoke999:
I'm sorry but Bungie need to run more ad campaigns and showcase these "new features" for their new game for their own good. I haven't seen any Halo reach trailers and I have no idea how it is different from the other games. The halo 3 trailer was shown in every channel from Cartoon Network to the ones your parents don't know you have access to.

This info isn't all that hard to find you know.

But since it apparently is click this link to reveal a comprehensive catalog of Halo: Reach information.

The_ModeRazor:
Dayum rite, it was about damn time they dropped master chief...
Oh wait, they didn't.
Goddamnit.
Anyway, I hope they at least do something different this time.

Halo: Reach doesn't have the Master Chief.

Eldritch Warlord:

T'Generalissimo:
I never played Halo 2, but Halo 3's narrative was an incoherent, incomprehensible mess.

Is it unreasonable for writers of direct sequels to expect familiarity with the plot, settings, and characters from previous installments?

If you missed Halo 2 you also wouldn't know about the Arbiter, Commander Miranda Keyes, the Prophet of Truth, the Brutes, Delta Halo, the Great Schism, the Forerunner Keyship, or the Gravemind and Cortana on High Charity before playing Halo 3. I can see why you'd be confused.

Yes, I think that a game should be able to stand entirely on it's own merits, particularly when the previous installment was on a different platform. If, without Halo 2, Halo 3 makes as little sense as it did to me, they probably should have just been two halves of the same game. I much preferred the original Halo's story, which was something like "Humanity is fucked. Survive" and everyone's desperate actions grew out of that. I really liked the ending of everyone except you being dead and considering it a victory. I suppose it made the Master Chief seem like a hero, but not a god; there's really only so much he can do and it made him much more human.

I don't know, maybe you're right, maybe the story is OK with familiarity of Halo 2, but to be honest, Halo 3 doesn't really compel me to find out.

slowpoke999:
I'm sorry but Bungie need to run more ad campaigns and showcase these "new features" for their new game for their own good. I haven't seen any Halo reach trailers and I have no idea how it is different from the other games. The halo 3 trailer was shown in every channel from Cartoon Network to the ones your parents don't know you have access to.

And why the hell was Bungie so concerned with not ruining the Halo story yet they fucked up the weapon balance, too much concentrated efforts?

But the game is being released in Fall, over six months from now. They're hardly going to start advertising it now.

Not a big fan of the Halo Franchise, however I am wary of modular stories. You leave things too seemingly open and develop whatever seems like fun or the fans want at any given time and eventually when the time comes to wrap everything up there will be no way of making everyone happy or even being consistant, and any fan base you achieved will backfire.

I think HALO succeeded in part because of the ongoing storyline and consistincy. The new franchise might very well see some success, but I'm not sure how well it will be thought of in the long run. What's more when messing around with an established universe and doing things "that might upset the fans" dismissively assuming them to come around anyway, is typically a bad idea. I point to the Star Wars prequel trilogy. In the very first movie there was a question about how a couple of Jedi on a planet due to an unlikely series of events, could possibly recognize the potential in Anakin, not to mention his potential power level and such. Especially given the rarity of Jedi and they weren't intentionally looking. Thus mitochlorian [SP] were invented, and at that was arguably the beginning of what turned into a pretty substantial fan backlash.

The death of all the "Spartans" is a downer, but integral to the story and what makes "Master Chief" special and able to do the stuff he does as a single "only you can save the galaxy" hero. Just going by the implication here, the idea seems to be to set things up so not all the Spartans died. This would of course begger questions as to why they weren't involved in the central HALO storyline especially when things really got intense. No way you could do that would truely maintain the canon... and I think that's what they are getting at.

Still it would be kind of cool to see Nicole (The Spartan from Dead Or Alive) to be inserted into the canon. Perhaps even time travelling <winks>.

So they are basing Reach on a fanfict book? Maybe it is me, but doesn't this seem like a lazy approach to developing a new game? I'm glad they want to release a different Halo game and I'm all for them doing so to incorporate a different view of the story, but the first Halo did drop us into a situation with no prior information. You were a space marine with a shield, they pointed you at the enemy and told you to kill them. Cortana was introduced as some sort of AI to aid you, and you had the various red shirt lower level marines to use as human shields.
I don't think any of us will argue that this sounds like just a plot to continuing to make money on the Halo franchise, but hopefully it will be a lot better than ODST. We like to play as the hero in games, not one of the faceless and nameless guys who are there as backup.

So they are basing Reach on a fanfict book? Maybe it is me, but doesn't this seem like a lazy approach to developing a new game? I'm glad they want to release a different Halo game and I'm all for them doing so to incorporate a different view of the story, but the first Halo did drop us into a situation with no prior information. You were a space marine with a shield, they pointed you at the enemy and told you to kill them. Cortana was introduced as some sort of AI to aid you, and you had the various red shirt lower level marines to use as human shields.
I don't think any of us will argue that this sounds like just a plot to continuing to make money on the Halo franchise, but hopefully it will be a lot better than ODST. We like to play as the hero in games, not one of the faceless and nameless guys who are there as backup.

That being said, I also have to say this: Poor Bungie. Just because they made a hugely successful console game series, they have had to butcher their original intentions because Microsoft wants moar money and then get spurned by their original audience, the computer gamers, because they feel the need to be elitist jerks.
Money doesn't change how it feels to ruin your work of art because of a whim of another.

yes.......yes they will

Vigilantis:
As long as its not a complete waste of $60.00 like ODST was I think I will let Bungie/Microsoft live to see another sunset.

I thought ODST was the best in the series. It's short campaign wasn't worth 60 dollars, no, but it was still the funnest campaign.

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