117 things I love about 343’s Halo

Somehow, 2020 is almost over. I could’ve sworn it was July just last week, but here we are…

It’s been a long and difficult year, one that has kept us all at arms length and also brought us closer together in unconventional ways. To close out 2020, I thought it would be nice to go out on a positive note as we look to the release of Halo Infinite next year.

So, here are 117 things I love about 343 Industries’s past decade with Halo.

Read More 117 things I love about 343’s Halo

Halo 2’s original ending revealed – how Bungie was going to finish the fight

The development woes of Halo 2 have been well documented over the years, Bungie has been very transparent about how much they had to cut from the final game. One of those things was the ending, intended to close out the series as a whole, which was replaced by that infamous cliffhanger.

We’ve never truly known what the original ending to Halo 2 was meant to be. Until now.

Let’s dive in and see how Bungie originally imagined this story’s conclusion, and how it stacks up to what we got in the end…

Read More Halo 2’s original ending revealed – how Bungie was going to finish the fight

ONI Archives story explained – what they mean for Halo’s future

INCOMING TRANSMISSION

ONI-Archive>>>>Updated.
SUBJ>>>>The future of Halo.

The Master Chief Collection is now complete – each major title has come to PC in what stands one of the most spectacular collections of games of this generation.

Alongside each release, 343 Industries has also released a new instalment in a video series named ‘ONI Archives,’ which is an in-universe recap of the events of each game.

These ONI Archives conclude with a short narrative audio drama (not unlike Hunt the Truth) that has slowly unfolded over the last year, and – at last – we know what it’s all about!

Read More ONI Archives story explained – what they mean for Halo’s future

I just want to gush a bit about what Halo 4 means to me…

Halo 4 recently celebrated its eighth birthday. Today, it releases on PC as the final piece of the Master Chief Collection.

Between the visual enhancements, the addition of an FOV slider, in-game integration of the Terminals and Spartan Ops cinematics (no more Halo Channel!), the new Forge items, and everything else the team at 343 has lovingly delivered – this is the definitive way to experience Halo 4.

This game is one that means a great deal and has strongly resonated with me over the years, so I just wanted to gush a bit about it…

Read More I just want to gush a bit about what Halo 4 means to me…

Jameson Locke – A study of Halo’s most underappreciated character

“Show our friend here that there’s more to a soldier than his armour.”

Five years. Five long years. That’s how long it’s been since Halo 5 released…

On this particular anniversary, I wanted to write a long overdue character study that pulls together things I said four years ago in my novel-length analysis of Halo 5 and my two-part Halo: Nightfall dissertation back in 2017, as well as all the time in-between.

Jameson Locke is one of my favourite Halo characters. He deserves so much better.

Let’s dissect what really works about him, what doesn’t, why he’s woefully underappreciated, and what future role Fireteam Osiris could have in Halo Infinite.

Read More Jameson Locke – A study of Halo’s most underappreciated character

Debunking the false ‘leaks’ about Halo Infinite and 343 Industries

Following the delay of Halo Infinite to 2021, you may have heard some allegedly ‘leaked’ reports about the state of the game and 343 Industries from Brad Sams, which has been making the rounds, uncritically reported on by various news outlets.

I know, it’s 2020 and facts don’t matter any more, but it’s completely false information and easily debunked.

Read More Debunking the false ‘leaks’ about Halo Infinite and 343 Industries

Why Installation 07 is the perfect setting for Halo Infinite

“It was known as Installation 07. It has become a sacred tomb for millions, though some may still live. I do not know.”

It’s been known since 2018, but we have finally received concrete confirmation: Halo Infinite is set on Installation 07, ‘Zeta Halo.’

While this is a brand-new Halo ring for the games, fans of the expanded universe will no doubt be well-acquainted with it from Greg Bear’s masterful Forerunner Saga.

Let’s delve into the known history of Installation 07, and explore why it’s the perfect setting for Halo Infinite.

Read More Why Installation 07 is the perfect setting for Halo Infinite

Let’s analyse the Halo Infinite demo’s approach to storytelling

“Spartan, we thought you dead, yet here you stand…”

Now that we’ve had some time to digest everything we were shown for the Xbox Games Showcase, let’s analyse what 343 Industries had to show for Halo Infinite.

From the characterisation of the Master Chief, to the parallels and references to previous games, to our new antagonists – there’s a lot to discuss.

Step inside!

Read More Let’s analyse the Halo Infinite demo’s approach to storytelling

I was invited to a Halo Infinite media briefing with 343, here’s what I learned… (campaign insight, new composer, and more!)

“Set a fire in your heart, Spartan! Fight hard. Die well.”

Two years following its announcement, we have just seen our first glimpse at campaign gameplay of Halo Infinite!

I was lucky enough to be invited to a media briefing with 343 Industries’ own Chris Lee (Studio Head) and Paul Crocker (Associate Creative Director), who provided insight into new characters and features, along with the announcement of Halo Infinite’s second composer and more.

Here’s everything I learned…

Read More I was invited to a Halo Infinite media briefing with 343, here’s what I learned… (campaign insight, new composer, and more!)

How Mendicant Bias has shaped the Halo universe to finish the fight (and failed)

“I am Mendicant Bias. This is what I have done.”

Some of the greatest, most enduring mysteries of the Halo universe are instantly called to mind and summed up by that strange name. Beggar after knowledge. Mendicant Bias.

Where their (co-)creator, the Didact, sought vengeance for 100,000 years, Mendicant Bias has single-mindedly sought atonement.

This quest for redemption has made them a pivotal character behind the scenes, to the point where their actions set into motion all the major events of the Halo story (because they couldn’t find the brakes).

With Halo 3 now on PC, this is the perfect time to examine the full extent of Mendicant Bias’s involvement in the past, present, and what potential lies ahead for them in the future of Halo in their ongoing efforts to finish the fight.

Read More How Mendicant Bias has shaped the Halo universe to finish the fight (and failed)