It wouldn’t be a Microsoft press conference without Halo, and sure enough, fans of the flagship Xbox series can expect more Master Chief than ever with the announcement of Halo: The Master Chief Collection for Xbox One. The rumoured compilation of Halo-history was confirmed by 343 Studios head Bonnie Ross, who presented a mix of gameplay and CG trailers to give an overview on what looks to be the most fully-featured Halo experience ever.
The single disc game will include Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary, Halo 2, Halo 3, and Halo 4, all running in their original engines at 1080p, 60FPS, and on dedicated servers. The annoucnment was kicked off with a Keith David-narrated CG trailer, in which the memorable moment from Halo 2 that saw Master Chief giving the Covenant back their bomb was shown from a new angle that connects to Halo 5: Guardians. The gorgeous update of a 10 year-old scene also hinted at the collection’s graphical update of Halo 2, which is getting the same treatment that Halo: Combat Evolved got with Anniversary Edition.
A sampling of the updated Halo 2 was shown as pro-player presenters battled it out on a visually updated version of the classic map Ascension, one of six Halo 2 maps remade with Xbox One technology. Those familiar with the map will find the action plays just as they remember, with Spartans and Elites dual-wielding, Banshees howling and flipping in the background, and, of course, tea-bagging. In total, over 100 multiplayer maps will be playable from across the franchises’ history. Single-player fans will be excited at the game’s interface, which allows you to jump between all four included titles, and even create custom playlists across multiple games. Dreams of a Flood-less Halo can now be a reality.
While the collection will no doubt tide-over fans looking to replay all the core Halo entries (minus the jazz-infused, underrated ODST), the future of Halo was not ignored, as an on-disc Beta for Halo 5: Guardians was also announced. Shown off with a short CG trailer that features classic Red vs. Blue combat, the same 60FPS, dedicated server standard was promised with Halo 5: Guardians, along with new Spartan abilities, and “Next Gen Arena Multiplayer.” Launching in December, the Beta isn’t the only extra in The Master Chief Collection: the new, Ridley Scott-produced digital series, Halo: Nightfall, will also be included on the disc.
Halo: The Master Chief Collection will release on November 11th for the Xbox One.