A Halo 4 Launch event taking place hours before release that could be streamed both online or even on the Xbox 360 dashboard that would feature a tournament style gameplay environment with live commentary over the gameplay as well as explanations of the new game mechanics by the 343i developers themselves.
How it will work:
The top 4 teams from MLG’s Winter Championship or whichever top teams can make it will be flown out to a certain location where the tournament will be held. Round robin style play will seed the teams for a double elimination tournament. Various settings for the gametypes will be hand picked by 343i to show off the amazing competitive merit of Halo 4!
What it will do:
This will not only bridge the gap between the competitive and casual communities, it will give new players and old players alike a certain familiarity with the game upon picking up their copies at midnight, so they can hop right into the amazing, jaw dropping experience that is Halo Infinity.
The tournament will build massive amounts of hype around the once skeptical design changes made by 343i, and will settle those competitive nerves that have been rattled by the somewhat controversial changes and additions to the Halo series.
Please tweet this amazing idea to @Xbox, @HaloWaypoint, @DavidEllis, @bsangel, and whoever else you might think would be interested!
Recently on The Halo Bulletin there were some details about the map Wraparound. I quoted the entire story below.
Clouds billow past. The sun is blinding. And your mind cannot even begin to comprehend the monstrous scale of the imposing towers that surround you. As your eyes follow the flowing lines of the Forerunner architecture, your body picks up the implied movement and your mind suddenly asks, “Where am I?” The answer comes to you, a subtle whisper hidden within the whistling of the wind: you’re inside a tower, suspended in the atmosphere….
You’re on Wraparound.
Wraparound was one of the first maps we worked on for Halo 4, and because it was done early in the development process, it went through a few different reboots. From a design perspective, it stayed the same. Visually, though, it became more ornate with each successive iteration.
When the first iteration didn’t meet our vision for the Forerunner style, we (literally) went back to the ol’ drawing board. Significant progress was made between the second and third iterations, and that’s when this particular multiplayer map became an integral part in helping define the visual style of the Forerunner geometry found in Halo 4.
Some of the things we really wanted to push were the impossible scale of being on colossal towers, the complexity of the high-reaching structures, and the familiar yet foreign sky. We also felt it was important to capture a feeling of movement. When you look at a still image of Wraparound, the form pulls your eyes in different directions. Players follow those guiding lines, which helps with traversing this two-tiered playspace.
Stylistically, the philosophy behind the layout of the map is closer to some of the small, symmetrical arenas in Halo: CE, 2, and 3. We wanted something balanced and tuned for competitive play, and something that supports Halo in its purest form: aiming, running, shooting, and jumping.
Jump gaps that you use to get into the center are there so if you find yourself on the losing side of combat, you can drop down, recharge your shields, and regain your composure. Those very same jump gaps also give you that adrenaline-filled moment when you’re charging into combat and leaping over the center, confidence soaring that you are, in fact, going to finish the fight.
Yes, you’re a humanity-defending, ancient-evil–fighting, codpiece-wearing, cybernetically enhanced super-soldier. And yes, you should have those hero moments where you feel every single bit of that, too.
Back to the map, though. Halls in the center provide long lines of sight. This map is not as powerful for long-range weapons, but, if you look hard enough, you can still find locations where you can use those weapons effectively. The bulk of the combat, as you would expect from a smaller-sized map, is close to mid. But, no matter what happens in the sandbox, this level tends to play out consistently.
The center is a rally point, with the rear disconnected from the front and middle. While you can get there on foot, man cannons are also available to launch you directly into this high-occupancy area. In addition to the established lines of travel, there are a few secret routes that lead from the lower level to the upper center for players who are observant about the angles of the pillars leading to the upper deck.
I can neither confirm nor deny that fancy-schmancy jumping may be involved in those routes. I can say, however, that fancy-schmancy jumping is definitely involved in those routes.
Speaking of confirming and denying, you may be wondering why I’m not sharing new Wraparound in-game screenshots with you. While many of you would say (and have said, AHEM) I enjoy torturing you, the truth is that when we withhold information, there’s always a reason why. The two most common reasons are we prefer to only share that which is close to final or final (in order to minimize disappointment if things get changed or potentially pulled) or there is a plan which involves its usage in the future. I’ll let you reread the first few paragraphs and determine which one is applicable in this case…
Here is a picture I found of the Master Chief prototype and his assault rifle. What do you guys think of it? I put the pictures of the assault rifles from previous Halo games below it for comparison.
Recently the Finnish magazine Pelaaja announced that Microsoft will be holding a Spring showcase on February 29th that will finally reveal Halo 4. Currently this is only a rumor and hasn’t been confirmed by Microsoft.
McFarlane Toys has been working with Microsoft and 343 Industries since the release of 2008’sHalo 3 line. For the past three years, wave after wave of Spartan and Covenant soldier have frequently packed the shelves wherever toys are sold. It should come as no surprise then that McFarlane Toys has just confirmed that they’ll be producing action figures based on Halo 4starting this August. “Halo 4 marks the return of the Master Chief and Cortana,” said Todd McFarlane. “Plus the introduction of new characters, weapons and locations sure to excite long-time fans.” Though the only confirmed figures at this time are Master Chief and Cortana, there are two waves announced, and each will consist of four figures. There are also plans for boxed figures that will come with larger accessories, such as Master Chief boxed with a Cryotube.
As if that wasn’t enough to get Halo fans excited, McFarlane also announced a new line of mini-figures based on Halo Avatar items. Coming this fall, the 2 ½” blind box figures will feature the clothing items that are featured on the Xbox Live Avatar marketplace. Fans will be able to hunt down miniature versions of Master Chief, Carter, a Warthog, and more. Todd McFarlane added, “With an avatar figure, each one is a surprise. And collecting a full series of our standard figures can be a significant investment, but an avatar figure is something any fan can afford.”
The Halo 4 figures will retail for around $12, and the Avatar minis will be sold for $3 each when they release later this year. How many of you will be adding to your collection when these lines arrive?
We have added a link to the top of our site that allows you to pre-order Halo 4 from amazon.com.
On how much focus Halo: CE Anniversary took away from Halo 4:
“Out of 200-plus people working at our studio, roughly 200 are working on Halo 4.”
On whether they will collaborate again with Certain Affinity, the studio founded by former Halo 2 lead multiplayer designer Max Hoberman:
“Certain Affinity will absolutely be working with us again. They’re a part of our family.”
Clarifying whether or not that means Certain Affinity will be doing multiplayer maps forHalo 4:
“We are definitely building Halo 4 multiplayer stuff in-house, [but] would we consider working with [them] on that stuff? Of course. They’ve done some of the best maps for everything since Halo 2.”
On whether or not they’ve been fighting an uphill battle with fans simply because they’re not Bungie:
“When people see what we’ve been able to achieve technologically, and how both careful and ambitious we’ve been with the gameplay — those things sound contradictory but they’re not — I think they’ll become more and more confident [in us].”
On whether or not any of the new engine technology from Anniversary will make its way into Halo 4:
“The technology in Halo: CE Anniversary is really cool, but it has nothing to do with the technology that [the Halo 4 team] is working on.”
On just how different Halo 4 will be from Bungie’s games:
“The core of what’s going to make Halo 4 great is some of the universe building and gameplay creation that Bungie seeded way back in Halo: CE.”
On where changes might be most visible:
“Now is the time when we really need to do something fresh and new and re-inject some new life…at least in multiplayer.”
On how lost you’ll be, storywise, if you play Halo 4 without having ever played Halobefore:
“If Halo 4 is your first [Halo] game, that’s fine — don’t worry about it.”