343 at E3/Gamescom
Here is a little information for the community about the upcoming Halo games to be released. Although there is not a substantial amount of information available to us right now, 343 Industries confirmed that there will be a Halo 5: Guardians beta on December 27th, 2014. The beta will be playable for three weeks, ending on January 18th, 2015. The beta will involve 4v4 combat, with all eight players having the same loadouts. The players will also be able to choose from seven different armors for the spartan character customization. Tim Longo, creative director for 343 Industries states that there will be a total of 11 weapons to play with during the beta. During their video teaser there were a number of weapons shown. Although there are a couple that I am unfamiliar with due to the image being cropped short. Below are a few of the weapons that are confirmed.
Frank O' Connor stated that there will not be traditional armor abilities like in Halo: Reach and Halo 4, but that there would be spartan abilities such as dual wielding and vehicle boarding. If you are a member who really enjoys getting limited time specials for upcoming games, Halo 5: Guardians will have those opportunities during the Master Chief Collection, as well as in Halo: Nightfall. Also by playing the beta you will be able to unlock content for the full game when it comes out. The rank system for Halo 5 has yet to be revealed to us, but there will, indeed, be one.
So far there has been speculation of three new abilities, although there might be more.
343i has released more information to us about the new character in the storyline, Agent Locke. 343 has not given much information about Locke, but we do have a little information on him that might help us determine if he is a good or bad guy. Halo: Nightfall is the story that takes place between Halo 4 and Halo 5: Guardians with the main character/actor being Jameson Locke/Mike Colter; sent on a journey to find Master Chief. Locke and his team are agents of the Office of Naval Intelligence (ONI) who must fight to survive, and evidently end up choosing between their loyalty to ONI, or their own life.
Onto some other debatable content that 343 is holding above us, arena multiplayer. The Halo games have always been arena, but from what is understood 343 has been angling at making Halo 5: Guardians into a less “Call of Duty” feel, and more into it’s own unique tradition with no other game like it. Bradford Welch (design director for 343) states that they are trying to give Halo 5: Guardians a more competitive focus with level playing fields, and map control. Halo 5: Guardians will also feature better frame rate with almost twice the frames per second.
Master Chief Collection
Dan Ayoub producer at 343 Industries has announced that Halo: The Master Chief Collection will have a ranking system almost identical to the one in Halo 2. Another thing to note is that players will be able to connect using system link. During the Gamescom tournament, players will be using this method to play. Keep in mind that you will still need a connection to xbox live in order to system link. Saved films and forge will make a return in the MCC as well. Although they will only be available to the games that already have that option, ie: Halo 3, and Halo 4. There is however going to be six maps that you can forge on created by the original multiplayer map designer from Halo 2. 343 has only given us the names of 4 out of the 6 maps to be remade for forge: Zanzibar, Shrine (Sanctuary), Zenith (Ascension), and Coagulation. The Halo 2 Anniversary will also feature the original visual effects, and let you switch between the new visual effects way faster than in the original Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary. On top of being able to switch between the visual effects you will be able to also switch between the original sound effects created by Bungie, and the new sounds 343 created specifically for MCC.
Every multiplayer map that has ever been created by either Bungie or 343 will be in the MCC. With that said, every game will be on its original engine. There will be a few number of updates to Halo 2 multiplayer modes as well. Swat will be getting updated, similar to what it was in Halo 3. They are implementing Ricochet from Halo 4, and infection too! The biggest thing I believe everyone on HaloTracks will be excited for is RACE!!! They will be taking the race gametype from the original Halo: CE and putting it into Halo 2. Although it will not be perfect, as it never is, it will be better than not having race at all! Another new feature to the Halo 2 Anniversary is a vehicle! It is called the M274-M Ultra-Light All-Terrain Vehicle, nicknamed the "Gungoose".
Although there are less than three months until the release of the Master Chief Collections we are still being left in the dark about many of its features. Hopefully those of you who are anxiously waiting for the arrival have learned a little bit more today. I will keep you all posted as we get more information with the upcoming PAXPrime announcement of forge. Maybe they will unveil the last two maps remade for the Halo 2 Anniversary. Thank you for reading, and I hope you all stay tuned for any upcoming information.