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Forums - Microsoft Discussion - Xbox Empire - Microsoft to Acquire Activision Blizzard | Game Pass Reaches 25m Subscribers

 

What Activision-Blizzard IP Should Xbox Bring Back First?

Blur 1 3.33%
 
Guitar Hero 4 13.33%
 
Hexen 0 0%
 
King’s Quest 1 3.33%
 
Prototype 3 10.00%
 
Spyro the Dragon 4 13.33%
 
StarCraft 10 33.33%
 
Tony Hawk’s Pro Skater 3 10.00%
 
Other 4 13.33%
 
Total:30

Well I'm trying to finish Yooka-Laylee and the Impossible Lair before it leaves gamepass on the 14th, but I want to play Halo Campaign when it launches tonight... Maybe I can finish Halo quickly lol.



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Machiavellian said:
Ryuu96 said:

Continues to look impressive from the small snippets, budget looks nice, nailing the tone.

But still worried about the story, Lol.

Why would you worry about the story.  I mean its going to be your standard basic invasion story.  You already have the backdrop so what really going to define the show is not the story but how they portray the Halo universe, its Heroes and its enemies.  I would not put to much effort in caring since the chance of the show being good are slim.  Usually these games to shows have limited budget, limited money for quality actors, writers well just about everything.

Cause it's non-canon and they've already made some changes that I don't like, often when someone decides to go non-canon they change things for the worse, I care about the quality of the show because it affects the quality of the IP that I love.

I'll be more broad and say that I'm worried about the writing in general which everything you listed falls under, I would also say that Halo is a lot more than just a typical run of the mill Alien invasion story, both in the games and outside of them, there's a lot of political drama in Halo 2 between the Covenant, a lot of mystery regarding the Forerunners, the ethical question of Spartans, etc.

Games can be adapted to TV successfully too, Castlevania and Arcane are two recent examples and there's decent budgeted films which are adaptations of gaming IP which I've enjoyed, also Forward Unto Dawn was good Imo. I'm fairly sure this Halo Show has a decent budget too, it was reported as the 2nd most expensive TV project in 2019, for the year of 2019 they had spent $41m on it and that only applied to what had been spent on the nine-episodes in Hungary.

Halo TV Series Spent A Ton of Money Last Year

So it's very likely that $41m is the absolute minimum.

Also, the price of an actor doesn't always equal quality, it's often simply marketing, I've seen many TV Show actors better than many Movie actors, if you take a look at the top paid actors in the world, many of them aren't even good actors or have a very small range.

Pablo Schreiber (Master Chief), Danny Sapani (Captain Keyes), Bokeem Woodbine (Soren) are all brilliant actors, I don't know the other actors so I can't comment on them but it doesn't mean they won't be good.

I want it to be good, I love Sci-Fi, I love TV Shows, I love Halo.

Last edited by Ryuu96 - on 08 December 2021

‎Halo Infinite (Original Soundtrack) by Various Artists on Apple Music

Spotify – Halo Infinite (Original Soundtrack)

Best Halo OST Available on Spotify and Apple Music Now.



shikamaru317 said:

Ugh, just saw what is going on in the comments of that Phil Spencer article. It's getting to the point anymore where I am starting to avoid posting in the comments of VGC articles, we have several people (who I won't name) who have paid for VGC supporter status in order to get multivote power on the article comments, and they they use that multivote power to go around ratioing anybody who speaks positively about Xbox or even slightly critically about Sony in any VGC article. Half the time I see my comments on articles that have nothing to do with Xbox or Sony getting 3 or 4 random downvotes at once from somebody who hates me and has either the 3x or the 4x multivote power. Sometimes I can post the exact same thing that other people in the comments are posting, but I will go from having the same number of likes as the others to having less likes or even a net negative of dislikes, due to being targeted by someone or multiple someones with multivote power. Honestly, this site would be better off if we got rid of the multivote power from the supporter system, I'm sure the admin likes the extra money it brings in, but it's not even remotely fair. 

Libara said:

At this point if you want to partake in civil discussion about Xbox that isn't flooded by desperate fanboys, you may as well just go to Xboxera.

VersusEvil said:

Yep, the vote power should be removed completely. The amount of times I've had to upvote a comment that's been completely nuked for literally no reason other than being a positive Xbox comment is common. Outside of the ability to block seeing users comments the supporter program is quite pointless and I say that as someone who's had it since pretty much day 1.

Guys (or girls), this downvoting business happens to literally everyone. Is this seriously what you're doing now? 

Anyhow, Halo is about to release: relax and spend time doing something you enjoy.



How Microsoft’s ‘​​​​​​​Halo Infinite’ Went From Disaster to Triumph - Bloomberg

In July 2020, Microsoft Corp. showed a nine-minute trailer of Halo Infinite, the latest installment from its blockbuster gaming franchise, which has sold more than 81 million copies and brought in almost $6 billion. Halo fans had been waiting to get a taste of the game since the company first told them about it two years earlier, and Microsoft was counting on their enthusiasm to propel sales of its newest Xbox, which it planned to release in the fall. The trailer showed an expanded playing field and new weapons, but gamers immediately fixated on the graphics, which were so blocky that cynical fans began to joke that Xbox must have mixed up its Halo and Minecraft franchises.

Even within Microsoft, there was wide acknowledgment that releasing a half-baked demo was a big mistake. “We should have known before and just been honest with ourselves,” Phil Spencer, Xbox’s head, said in a recent interview with British GQ magazine. “We were there not out of deception, but more out of ... hope. And I don’t think hope is a great development strategy.”

Microsoft reluctantly decided to push back the release date. It then tapped Joseph Staten, the lead writer for the first three Halo games in the early 2000s, to get things back on track. Staten had stepped away from the franchise in 2009 and was serving as a senior creative director for Microsoft, where he worked on other big games, including State of Decay and Crackdown. A month after the debacle with the demo, Staten rejoined 343 Industries, the Microsoft-owned gaming studio that makes Halo, as its creative director. One of the first things he did was remind the studio’s demoralized staff that the franchise’s long-running success had actually been marked by several bumpy introductions, including a disastrous demonstration of the very first Halo game in 2001 that almost doomed the series before it even got started. “We’ve had some rough demos over the years,” he says.

Staten also persuaded Microsoft’s leadership to give 343 as much time as it needed to fix things. Microsoft saw Halo as critical to influencing gamers to buy the new console, but releasing a buggy version could have soured players on the game.

The studio made that mistake once before, with its 2014 release of Halo: The Master Chief Collection, whose multiplayer version was so glitchy that 343 ended up making multiple public apologies. Serious gamers still remember the episode as a significant breach of trust that Microsoft couldn’t afford to repeat. “There’s nothing worse for a game than to release it and have all sorts of bugs or things that are going to ruin the gameplay experience,” says Jason Brown, who once competed in Halo’s professional e-sports league under the name Lunchbox.

The risky decision to slow down seems to have transformed a potential disaster into a real success. In November, 343 surprised fans by releasing a free multiplayer mode of Halo Infinite on the 20th anniversary of the release of the first Halo game. By the next day, the game had set an Xbox record for most concurrent players on the online gaming platform Steam. The full version went on sale Dec. 8 to positive initial reviews. “Halo Infinite can’t just be another Halo. It needs to be the Halo that exists in your imagination,” wrote CNET reviewer Mark Serrels. “And incredibly, against all odds, it pretty much is.”

Gamers, notoriously difficult to keep happy, seem ready to forgive Microsoft for its false start. “I don’t want to say the Halo community has done a 180, because gamers now are just kind of skeptics, but they’ve turned maybe 130 degrees,” says Matt McDonald, moderator of a Halo forum on Reddit.

Halo pits a genetically modified Marine—the Master Chief—in a battle against a religious cult of aliens, with the future of humanity on the line. Coming into being alongside the first Xbox, it’s been produced in-house at Microsoft since its inception. In 2007, 343 took over production of Halo from Bungie, the studio that made the earliest versions. The Microsoft-owned studio has been characterized by flawed internal tech tools, infighting, and high turnover, according to interviews with more than 20 current and former employees, who requested anonymity because they weren’t authorized to speak publicly.

All those factors played a role in the difficulties with Halo Infinite, which the studio began planning in 2015 just after Halo 5, the last full installment of the game, was released. After kicking around various formulas, the developers landed on an idea that stuck: Halo as an “open world” game. Rather than progress through a series of levels, players would explore a giant land mass, completing missions in any order, as they did in Nintendo Co.’s 2017 The Legend of Zelda: Breath of the Wild, which is considered one of the greatest games of all time.

Video games are built using software tools called gaming engines. The engine used to build Halo was one that 343 had based largely on old code from Bungie. Parts of the engine, a set of tools called Faber, became infamous at the studio for being buggy and difficult to use. Within engineering, there’s a concept known as “tech debt,” which refers to problems one puts up with because the previous programmers of a system chose quick, easy solutions over more sustainable ones. Faber’s code, some of which dated to the early 2000s, had so much debt that some 343 engineers mockingly referred to its “tech bankruptcy.”

The staffing at 343 was also unstable, partially because of its heavy reliance on contract workers, who made up almost half the staff by some estimates. Microsoft restricts contractors from staying in their jobs for more than 18 months, which meant steady attrition at 343.

Halo Infinite’s creative direction was also in flux until unusually late in its development. Several developers described 343 as a company split into fiefdoms, with every team jockeying for resources and making conflicting decisions. One developer describes the process as “four to five games being developed simultaneously.”

By the summer of 2019, Halo Infinite was in crisis mode. The studio decided to cut almost two-thirds of the entire planned game, leaving managers to instruct some designers to come to the office and do nothing while the studio figured out the next move. Eventually the game’s open world was cut back from a vast, Zelda-like experience into something far smaller. It soon become clear to some on the team that, even with the compromises, getting Halo Infinite into decent shape by the following fall would be impossible. Still, the timing of the release didn’t seem up for discussion. Microsoft told 343 that it had to be a launch game for the next Xbox, which meant releasing it in November 2020.

The demo changed all that. Microsoft said on Aug. 11, 2020, that it would delay the game, though it left the exact timing vague. When Staten arrived, he pushed his bosses to let 343 take its time, presenting them with a list of features that would make Halo Infinite a success if time weren’t the only factor. “Here’s a list of all the things we could do to make this game excellent,” he recalls telling them. “Here’s what more time buys us.”

As a player, Staten liked how computer-controlled Marines in earlier versions would join up with him on his battles. At the time he took over, he says, Marines in Halo Infinite were programmed to stay frustratingly close to the spots where the player first encountered them. “Every once in a while I run into a couple of Marines,” Staten says. “But they kind of stay where they are, and they don’t join me on my adventure, and they’re not part of that heroic feeling that you get from classic Halo games.”

In the end, 343 fixed the graphics problems, and Staten got his roaming Marines. But Halo Infinite isn’t yet a finished product. That’s OK in a way that wouldn’t have been true for past versions. Since the release of the last full version of the game, the industry has moved more toward regularly updated games than periodic releases of entirely new titles. The studio is planning to add some key features as updates, including co-op mode, which lets gamers play the campaign with a friend, and forge, which allows for the creation of multiplayer maps.

For now, Halo players are content to play the version 343 is releasing. “It just has a really good balance of new and old, which can cater to classic and newer fans alike,” says Marcus Lovejoy, who competed in Halo’s professional e-sports league under the name “Elumnite” before becoming a team manager. “That has been one of the biggest game changers.”



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Well...That was sorta, boring? Lol. It was a lot less than I expected after all that waiting, it doesn't sound too damning to 343i or Microsoft and a lot of it we already knew or made educated guesses on.

1. Sounds like the toolset/engine was one of the biggest issues, as we suspected, they've had to revamp a toolset/engine used since Halo CE for an Open-World environment which has support across Xbox One, PC and Xbox Series, of course that would be complicated. I only hope now that the engine/toolset are in a good place for stable updates across the entire generation and they don't need another revamp.

2. Microsoft's damn contract rule sound like another major issue for 343i, almost half of 343i is made up by contract workers and with Microsoft's rule, they can only stay for 18 months, you're basically at some point going to lose almost half your staff workforce and IIRC they can't re-apply to work at Microsoft again without first waiting a few months, that would absolutely destroy team cohesion.

3. Teams being split and competing for resources is another issue, has been an issue with almost every Halo title though.

4. Almost two thirds of the game was cut in 2019, damn. Now I'm curious what that Halo looked like, although bigger isn't always better, their Open-World could have been a bloated mess and reviewers have been praising their current Open-World so I think they maybe made the right decision.

5. Microsoft telling 343 that Halo had to be a launch game is something we already knew too, they told us it had to be a launch game, Lol.

Sorta...Boring? Like, a lot of this we already knew, a lot is typical Halo development, the best part of the article is the snipper on Joseph Staten and what he did for the team after joining, Lol.

IN JOE WE TRUST!

Please stay.

Last edited by Ryuu96 - on 08 December 2021



...to avoid getting banned for inactivity, I may have to resort to comments that are of a lower overall quality and or beneath my moral standards.

twintail said:
shikamaru317 said:

Ugh, just saw what is going on in the comments of that Phil Spencer article. It's getting to the point anymore where I am starting to avoid posting in the comments of VGC articles, we have several people (who I won't name) who have paid for VGC supporter status in order to get multivote power on the article comments, and they they use that multivote power to go around ratioing anybody who speaks positively about Xbox or even slightly critically about Sony in any VGC article. Half the time I see my comments on articles that have nothing to do with Xbox or Sony getting 3 or 4 random downvotes at once from somebody who hates me and has either the 3x or the 4x multivote power. Sometimes I can post the exact same thing that other people in the comments are posting, but I will go from having the same number of likes as the others to having less likes or even a net negative of dislikes, due to being targeted by someone or multiple someones with multivote power. Honestly, this site would be better off if we got rid of the multivote power from the supporter system, I'm sure the admin likes the extra money it brings in, but it's not even remotely fair. 

Libara said:

At this point if you want to partake in civil discussion about Xbox that isn't flooded by desperate fanboys, you may as well just go to Xboxera.

VersusEvil said:

Yep, the vote power should be removed completely. The amount of times I've had to upvote a comment that's been completely nuked for literally no reason other than being a positive Xbox comment is common. Outside of the ability to block seeing users comments the supporter program is quite pointless and I say that as someone who's had it since pretty much day 1.

Guys (or girls), this downvoting business happens to literally everyone. Is this seriously what you're doing now? 

Anyhow, Halo is about to release: relax and spend time doing something you enjoy.

Oh I agree, opinion based downvoting and upvoting is inevitable in any comment system that allows upvotes and downvotes, and it has caused issues for people of all fanbases. My issue is not with the voting system itself, it's with the whole selling multi-vote power to VGC supporters thing the site did several years back. It has proven increasingly problematic as time has gone on. Why should one person's opinion be valued more than any other person's opinion just because they pay the site? It's the website equivalent of a pay to win microtransaction in a multiplayer game, I criticize those and I will absolutely criticize this multi-vote system. 

Last edited by shikamaru317 - on 08 December 2021

Engine/toolset sounded like a nightmare, Lol, I really hope it's fixed.

I really hope Joe stays forever, Microsoft needs to throw huge amounts of cash at him.

But I think most importantly, something has to be done about this contract shit, it's stupid, it's hurting 343, why are full time positions at 343 rare? Are they unable to do it? Do they not have the space or resources? Seems weird...Microsoft either needs to adjust this contract rule or invest more into 343 to put them in a position to be able to hire a lot of full time workers, maybe expand their studio or open a new one? Idk...Or just change the dumb rule.

Maybe they should create an entirely new engine, like a whole engine from scratch, completely split from Slipspace/Blam during this '10 year Halo Infinite' plan if Slipspace and its toolset still has issues.

Last edited by Ryuu96 - on 08 December 2021

Honestly this contract rule is not good for game development as a whole, not just 343, this could cause issues at all Xbox studios, especially larger ones, Phil needs to convince Satya to adjust it, especially when they're in a time of mass expansion to their gaming division.

Also does this rule now apply to Bethesda? Lol.

Last edited by Ryuu96 - on 08 December 2021