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XBox (Games) The Almighty Buck

Halo 2 Developer Talks Story 25

An anonymous reader writes "With any luck, Halo 2 will supplement hours of fragging and warthogging with some more good sci-fi story. In an interview with Bungie's studio manager Pete Parsons talks about the larger Halo world, the influence of fan fiction and Halo novels on Halo 2, and the widespread appeal of the game." Thanks also to GameConnect for the link to their article talking about Microsoft's heavy hand when it comes to pre-orders.
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Halo 2 Developer Talks Story

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  • Better Link... (Score:3, Informative)

    by Anonymous Coward on Thursday October 28, 2004 @10:46AM (#10653436)
    Printable version [howstuffworks.com] of the article, so you don't have to wade through six pages of ads just to read a paragraph or two on each page...
  • Have there really been enough significant changes to make it a new game?
    If it were pc only game, dual weilding, vehicle boarding and new guns could really have been a patch, mod or expansion pack at the most.
    Not to say I didn't thoughourly (sp?) enjoy the first Halo, but it just seem this is a bit devoid of anything new and exciting to warrant a AUD$100 purchase (I'm a poor student).
    • The continuation of the story is certainly welcome, and the addition of xbox live is great.

      But, if you don't play online, have lan-parties or care about the story, then you might not want to consider this title.

    • Re:Changes? (Score:2, Interesting)

      Actually, Halo 2 has better graphics, a new story, and a completely new server-choosing system, in addition to all the new vehicles, weapons, and ability. It's 100% a new game.
    • by Anonymous Coward
      Unlike a lot of developers, Bungie doesn't make new games for the sake of "changes." Granted, there are lots of graphical improvements, online play, better gameplay and level design, etc.

      Halo 2 is a new game because it's a new story--a continuation after Halo ends.

      Do movie sequels come out because of "new features?" Does Toy Story 2 merely upgrade the rendering of Toy Story?
      • Do movie sequels come out because of "new features?" Does Toy Story 2 merely upgrade the rendering of Toy Story?

        The comparison of movies to games in this case is a poor one, since the entire point of a movie is to tell a story or give a perspective on an issue. If you remove this, you are left with something highly abstract, and frankly, most likely something that no one will waste their time watching.

        That being said, I find myself these days becoming more and more annoyed by games that sell soley up

  • Wow, he gets through a whole article about the Halo 2 story without actually telling us any of the Halo 2 story. I'm impressed.
    • He should be. Part of what was so devistating to Bungie about the leak was that in doing so they were worried that the plot lines would get released without people experiencing the twists and turns on their own.
  • Ho Masta Chief!

    Try grab me one primo cuz!
    We talking story bout Halo
    and my mout' stay all dry from
    da kine cuttlefish!
  • Fluff piece... (Score:5, Interesting)

    by CaptMonkeyDLuffy ( 623905 ) on Thursday October 28, 2004 @11:47AM (#10654239)
    I'm sorry but any article about the story from Halo that doesn't touch upon the Marahon series(to which Halo is the spiritual successor, though not a direct sequel) really misses what could be a far more interesting discussion.

    Breif history on the Marathon subject: Could be considered Bungie's first 'hit'(Yes, Pathways into Darkness may qualify to some, but since that game is in the same 'universe' as Marathon, it could be considered a prequel and we'll just lump it in with Marathon for now, okay.) The Marathon series was a first person shooter from around the same point in time as the original Doom and Doom 2. It could be considered one of the first FPS games with a significant 'plot.' At first glance the plot was an alien invasion of a colony ship, throw in some human created AI's that are helping organize the defense against the invasion. The plot was fairly intricate for the time, and at first glance wouldn't stand up to plots today(since the focus on plot has been increasing), but certainly very notable for its time.

    What made Marathon interesting, was that if you looked close you'd realize there are a lot of unanswered questions. If you looked closer, you'd realize the game is littered with hidden messages and clues to fill in all those gaps. The amount of analysis and reading between the lines was in essence an entirely separate game in and of itself. The amount of effort that's gone into interpreting Marathon's story [bungie.org] is impessive. I can't think of any other game that has a story with this kind of depth(not to say other games don't have deep stories, just no others that have depth in this particular manner). This aspect of the Marathon series is its one truly unique aspect that sets it apart, and the reason why it's a favorite of mine to this day.

    An interesting comparison between Halo and Marathon that I really wish would be discussed is that a lot of the 'hidden depth' found in Marathon's plot could be attributed to how the plot was told(which was via text 'computer terminals'). I'm curious if someone who was involved in both could offer any discussion as to whether it would even be possible to form a plot similar to Marathon's using the 'cinematic' style of game that is released today... Would you have to create a game with a similar text heavy storytelling to reproduce the effect(which wouldn't fly today)? Could(with enough effort) a cinema style game actually contain that amount of misdirection and hidden clues and whatnot? Or would some 'happy medium' have to be found(the necessary plot bits are done cinematically but there are optional plot bits to be found that are text...)?

    Maybe I'm just a pessimist, but somehow I feel the requirements to sell a 'modern' game will make it so we'll never see another game with a plot like Marathon. Pity.
    • An interesting comparison between Halo and Marathon that I really wish would be discussed is that a lot of the 'hidden depth' found in Marathon's plot could be attributed to how the plot was told(which was via text 'computer terminals').

      The recent Doom 3 had text (also video and voice) PDAs lying around with additional material driving the plot. You can play it as a dumb shooter, or read everything for a bit more background on the events in the game - although I've played the Doom 3 demo and the writing d
      • Bungie has stated that its next project is not going to be set in the Halo universe. Although an entirely new franchise/series or something to with Myth is more likely a new Marathon is not totally out of the question.
        • Re:Fluff piece... (Score:1, Insightful)

          by Anonymous Coward
          Bungie can't make a Myth or Oni game. They sold the rights to Take Two in 2000.

          One of the Bungie Weekly Updates talked about their being no current plans to continue the Marathon universe, but someone else can dig up that link.

          - [Andrew Nagy]
    • Re:Fluff piece... (Score:3, Insightful)

      by hunterx11 ( 778171 )
      Oh but they do have a backstory [ilovebees.com]. And quite an engrossing one at that.
    • I know this is not a game, but I cannot stop mentioning the comic masterpiece "Watchmen", which has a lot of depth, put in by various comic tricks, like newspaper lying around, the names of the companies or products that appear, the people that move inthe background, etc.

      I guess that it could also be done in this way.
    • Re:Fluff piece... (Score:4, Insightful)

      by Have Blue ( 616 ) on Thursday October 28, 2004 @02:17PM (#10656038) Homepage
      Halo is already pretty close to that "happy medium"- there are a series of tie-in novels, developed with Bungie's close supervision, that provide a backstory for the game.
    • Metroid prime did this to a large degree. Almost the entire 'story' was told by reading computer terminals or ancient glyphs. Very little, aside from the introduction/escape to the planet/boss introductions/endgame was done with scripted cut-scenes.

      It creates an interesting mix, because it allows players to skip the story entirely if they just want to blow crap up.

      --Jeremy
      • Deus Ex 1 had a lot of backstory you could read in terminals, newspapers, books, etc.

        Deus Ex 2, however, repeated the same five pieces repeated over and over again, until I quit bothering to read them. Yet another place where Deus Ex 1 was great and Deus Ex 2 flopped.
    • ...and if you love Marathon as much as CaptMonkey here, don't forget about Marathon:Aleph One [bungie.org].

      I haven't checked it out in a while, personally...but I loved Marathon, mostly for the same reasons the good 'ol Capt just talked about.
  • Simmons: "Seriously though why are we out here? As far as I can tell it's just a box canyon in the middle of nowhere. No way in or out."

    Simmons:"The only reason we set up a red base here is because they have a blue base over there. And the only reason they have a blue base there is because we have a red base here."

    Griff:"Yeah, that's because we are fighting each other."

    Simmons:"No no but I mean even if we were to pull out today and they would've come take our base, they would have two bases in the midd
  • Halo wasn't a big sucess for their story- It was the multiplayer aspect. Maybe it's just my small town, but my friends and I set up 8-16 player halo parties all the time. We don't play halo because of the plot, but because of the physics, vehicles and guns. It's just the best multiplayer game for any console. I think everyone was disapointed in the singleplayer (i beat it in a day), and the emphasis of halo 2 should be on the multiplayer game.

There must be more to life than having everything. -- Maurice Sendak

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