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Full Q&A on Pages 2 and 3.
We recently got a chance to sit down and talk to some of the guys that have been working tirelessly on the upcoming, hugely anticipated Halo 4, and we got plenty of interesting insight and information.
Our editors Kartik Mudgal and Shubhankar Parijat interviewed Lead Designer, Chris Haluke and Studio Producer, Che Chou, and had a nice long chat about the upcoming first person shooter that will be kicking off an entirely new Halo trilogy.
Chris Haluke started off the interview by giving us a detailed summary of Halo 4 and some of its biggest innovations. “So as you may know, Halo 4 is back,” he began. “Halo 4 is soon to be released, and after three and a half years, we at 343 are extremely excited to finally take the lid off this thing and let players get their hands on it.”
But what story does Halo 4 exactly follow? When’s it set in the Halo fiction? How long after Halo 3 does it take place? “Halo 4 is a story that is going to take place and kick off right after the events of Halo 3,” Chris detailed. “Master Chief and Cortana are adrift on the Forward Unto Dawn. It’s a derelict UNSC frigate that has been orbiting a mysterious planet in the background. That is how we left off with Halo 3, and we’re kicking it off right at that point in Halo 4.
“And what we’ve been really excited about is that Halo 4 marks the return of humanity’s greatest hero in the Master Chief. Chief is going to face all new challenges In this mysterious new world, as well as new enemies. “
And what about Cortana? Halo 4’s hype has hugely been centered around Cortana, her relationship with the Chief and her lifespan. What role will she play in Halo 4? “Cortana is not only Chief’s best friend, but also his A.I. companion,” Haluke explained. “She’s approximately 8 years old, and in the Halo fiction, AIs tend to break down after the seven year mark. So the two of them will have to overcome these issues together, and that will be uncovered and told in the narrative of Halo 4.”
But that is not the only new experience Halo 4 will be offering to longtime Halo fans- we all know about the Forerunners, the mysterious new enemies. “This is something at the studio that we’re really excited to bring,” said Haluke. “We’re bringing a new element into the Halo sandbox. This is gonna give players new opportunities and new challenges, and they’re gonna have to learn how to deal with these threats in new ways. So ultimately we’re expanding the sandbox, and we’re extremely happy to do so. There’ll be new enemies, there’ll be new weapons that these enemies will have that the players can now use against them.”
And what about the multiplayer? Well, it turns out the multiplayer will be focusing on the narrative as well. “This is where we’re beginning to tie narrative into multiplayer,” Haluke continued. “It’s something that we as a studio are extremely passionate about- really telling stories not only through our main campaign, but also in multiplayer. We want to bring people in, we want this to be an immersive experience, and we want it to be as accessible as possible to all fans.”
Spartan Ops, the new co-op mode of Halo 4, will deliver episodic missions and 6-7 minutes long CG cutscenes. What story will those episodes tell? “This is going to tell the story about life on Infinity and beyond, six months after the events of Halo 4’s main campaign,” Haluke told us. “This gives us an incredible opportunity to build off of the fiction in Halo and drive it forward in new ways.”
And Spartan Ops will be far more loaded with content than you could have imagined. The co-op mode will give us 10 episodes of the CG series and it will have 50 missions. “That’s an incredible amount of content that makes up season 1 of Spartan Ops,” Haluke boasted.
He then went on to talk about the multiplayer modes and how they all tie together. How everything that you do in Halo 4 makes a difference. “We want to continually drive fiction and narrative forward,” he said. “We are going to tie in narrative layers and components from Halo 4’s main campaign in to Spartan Ops. We are going to have characters that recur that you are gonna have met in the main campaign that will play roles in Spartan Ops. So of all these narrative threads connect and players will learn more of these players and settings as Spartan Ops drives forward.”
“Players will be following the story of a group of Spartans entitled Majestic squad,” he continued. “So lot of the CG series that you will be watching at home deals with their exploits and what they are up against. You as the player with your friends will be playing as Crimson Squad, and they also help drive the narrative forward. So as you play and as you watch the narrative weaves between both between gameplay and the CG series.”
“This is something that we are extremely excited about as well as the fact that to make our immersion even more is that fact that your character for the very first time when you play multiplayer you get to create your own custom Spartan,” he went on. “This Spartan is persistent across both War Games and Spartan Ops. So as you play and earn points and modifications and upgrade your Spartan in Spartan Ops, you can then use that same character in War Games to play online competitively, so everything you do does matter.
“And we truly believe that this is a new way that we can open up doors and make it more accessible to fans, by given them an option to use their Spartan in either Spartan Ops or War Games. So at a very high level, that is a look at the campaign some of the high level threads and describing the infinity multiplayer experience and giving you a little more information on Spartan Ops.”
With Chris Haluke having given us great details on the several modes and plotlines of Halo 4, we then went on to ask the devs a few questions of our own.
Go over to Page 2 to read our full Q&A with Lead Designer, Chris Haluke and Studio Producer, Che Chou.
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