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Halo 4: 343 remaster the universe

Discussion in 'Halo General Discussions' started by Noles, May 12, 2012.

  1. Noles

    Noles Guest

    John’s been asleep for four years, seven months and ten days, in the rear end of a spacecraft that’s been snipped in half by a slipspace portal. That’s a pretty long time. Nearly a lifetime, if you’re a smart AI like Cortana, but we’ll get to that later. When he awakes it’s to a familiar threat: Elites and Grunts. Lead designer Scott Warner explains: “We’re grounding players in familiar Halo. We’re getting them reacquainted with what they know, before everything is turned on its head and all the rules are changed.”
    Don’t get too excited yet – 343 Industries aren’t going to tell us about that in detail… yet. What we know: Halo 4 will be set on the mysterious world that appeared at the end of Halo 3, assuming you were playing on Legendary difficulty. It’s called Requiem, and it’s the home of a whole new class of enemy. If the phrase ‘Elites and Grunts’ made you wince, it changes when you get to the planet’s surface.
    It’s already different, in subtle ways. John-117 is a lot more physical; climbing walls, leaping sideways to avoid falling debris. Not world-changing moves, but new for a guy who’s traditionally been visible only as a first-person hand and a pair of legs. His armour has been redesigned to allow animators to move him around. The solid bulk of the upper torso has been replaced with sectioned panels. This means that for the first time, the Xbox’s biggest hero can lift his arms in the air, giving the impression that he just don’t care.


    At some point, the Chief will come across the UNSC Infinity. If you’ve slathered yourself in the extended universe, you’ll know that the Infinity was first mentioned inthe Glasslands novel written by videogame sci-fi specialist Karen Traviss. It’s a huge ship, with SPARTAN-IV soldiers among its personnel.

    The UNSC Infinity is also the location of the competitive multiplayer, and a separate, epic side-campaign. Red vs Blue battles aren’t just spontaneous, arbitrary battles between differently painted super-soldiers. They’re training in the Infinity’s Combat Deck. And “included in the price” of the game – a specific phrase that almost certainly means “you won’t get it if you buy second-hand” – are the episodic instalments of a full co-op campaign.
    These weekly instalments will see you enrol as a SPARTAN-IV on board the Infinity. There’ll be a full-length campaign, broken into weekly chunks of five missions each. And with those missions comes an animated CGI series, featuring the tales of four other recruits. 343 Industries clearly want to tell more stories in their world, to bring the lore out of the extended universe and into the game. Sometimes you just can’t get enough story into an FPS.


    Your progress in the co-op campaign (which you can play solo, misanthropes) will be persistent in the competitive multiplayer, giving beginners a chance to power up before they dive in. And 343 are aware that many players dip into the more hostile multiplayer, only to log out and never return. So that’s being made more accessible, in small ways.


    A phrase that executive producer Kiki Wolfkill has used a few times is that they’re trying to recreate the ‘awe and wonder’ of the first Halo and tell an emotional tale. But with Chief being a faceless man of few words, it’s left to Cortana to bring out the feelings. Her status as a Smart AI means that she’ll only have a lifespan of seven years before she undergoes rampancy. That’s a kind of extreme midlife crisis, when AIs think they’re gods and make peculiar life decisions. It happened in the past to Forerunner AI Mendicant Bias, and that **** went and joined the Flood. It’s going to be an unpredictable, exciting and quite possibly heartbreaking time for Cortana.
    We haven’t seen that yet – like they said, the opening few moments of Master Chief’s campaign were designed to be familiar. They’re holding Requiem’s secrets close to their chests at this point. But the scale of the Infinity side-campaign, the number of winks to the extended universe and the classic fast-paced rhythm of the multiplayer will almost certainly make this a hit with huge Halo fans. The exotic new planet and the completely secret new race? Well, hopefully they’re the blood transfusion that the series needs. We’ll soon find out.

    source: http://www.computerandvideogames.com/

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