Thursday, June 27

343 does some Q and A on Halo: Spartan Assault

Kevin Grace and Graeme Jennings have answered some fan questions on Halo: Spartan Assault!

Will there be any new weapons to use in this game or only weapons from previous games? -Cizlin

We have a suite of the old Halo favorites whilst adding some new turbocharged versions of existing weapons.

Will our profile for Halo: Spartan Assault carry over between Windows 8 PC and Windows Phone 8? -bfett9

Cloud saving is enabled in the game, allowing players to carry their profile over between Windows 8 (Tablet or Desktop) and Windows Phone 8.

How long will it take to complete the main Campaign in Halo: Spartan Assault? -TashiGAF

The main campaign contains 25 missions plus mission-specific and weekly challenges, which add to the gameplay duration.

Where does the story fit in the Halo timeline? -jesse7456

The story of Halo: Spartan Assault takes place in the hectic time between Halo 3 (where it looked like things were calming down as far as intergalactic warfare was concerned) and the start of Halo 4 (where said hopes were quite thoroughly dashed). Anybody who played Halo 4 met Commander Sarah Palmer and the idea of Spartan Ops, and Spartan Assault lets you go back and see where Palmer and this new Spartan mission structure got started.

How much will the game cost? -monkeyisbest

$6.99 USD.

Is 100% of the save data and game progress saved to the cloud? -Falcon 304

Games are saved locally and also saved to the cloud when the user is connected to the Internet.

While the Covenant forces seem to be that of the original empire, with Sangheili and Jiralhanae together, the inclusion of the Spartan-IVs and characters such as Parg Vol indicate that this might be a post-war splinter faction. Any clarification on who we're actually fighting? -Dark Auk
It's a bit too early to head down Spoiler Lane on this one, but you'll be fighting some familiar faces with interesting new motivations.

Will there be a large difference between the price (hulls) for each platform, or will it cost the same regardless of platform choice (PC, phone and tablet)? -SpiritHawk7

Price is the same across all platforms.

For the PC platform, will there be a physical disc for the game that one can pre-order and purchase from retailers, or is it download only like on the phone and tablet? -SpiritHawk7

Halo: Spartan Assault is available from the Windows 8 Store or the Windows 8 Phone Store; there is no physical disc.

Can we earn awards in-game that will benefit us in Halo 4, such as weapon skins, XP, Emblems and Armor? -a live dinosaur

Halo: Spartan Assault players will indeed receive extra content in Halo 4, including an Emblem and some XP.

Will we play Palmer as an ODST at any point in this game? -DecepticonCobra
No disrespect to the ODSTs, but once you make it to the Spartans, you stay a no; this story focuses on Commander Palmer's early days as a Spartan-IV.

Is there any significance to Palmer's armor being silver while Spartan Davis’ is gold? -HaloFanForLife1


Is Halo: Spartan Assault going to become a platform to explore more corners of the vast and rich Halo universe? -erickyboo

We've definitely thought about visiting other important moments in the Halo storyline in a Spartan Assault kind of way, but all attention right now is on getting this first effort finished and as awesome as we can make it.

When will Halo: Spartan Assault release? -The Little Moa

July 2013. We have not yet nailed down the specific date. We’ll announce the date just as soon as the details are finalized.

What's the story with the Brutes in Halo: Spartan Assault? Are they part of the Covenant Loyalists? Are they allied with Jul's forces? If so, why? -Toa Freak
We'll have lots more to say about who is or isn't in Halo: Spartan Assault once the game is out in the wild (and what we have to say will make a lot more sense then, too). On the upside, though, there's not long to wait!

Tuesday, June 25

Halo Reclaimer Trilogy is now simply a saga and Halo 5 is probably called Halo 5: The Second Search for Cortana or How the Chief got his groove back?

Halo 5: The Second Search for Cortana or How the Chief got his groove back? 

There seems to be some changes in the wind regarding how Halo is framed or presented or portrayed in the market place.

The new Halo game was announced at E3 by way of an introduction video which showed a battered and tired Master Chief trudging through the desert to come face to face with a winged mechanical monster that some have suggested is the legendary mendicant Bias. At the end of the video trumpets and Angels declare there's a new Halo coming. 

It doesn't have a name or a number. This is clearly a deliberate thing. You don't make expensive videos and forget to add the '5'. It just doesn't happen (Recon v. ODST issues aside) so what's going on?

This article shares some insight from Phil Spencer, a big shot at Microsoft. Spencer said :"While we originally said trilogy, we've actually expanded this to more of a saga, so we don't want to limit the Reclaimer story within a trilogy.

So the current Halo series is no longer called the Reclaimer trilogy. It's a saga (like Star Wars?) That much is clear but where this announced Halo game fits is unclear. Is it simply the natural successor to Halo 4 or is it a side quest? Was the true name of halo 5 to embarrassing - that being Halo 5: The Second Search for Cortana or How the Chief got his groove back, that they had to hide it?

I'm probably stepping off the ledge a bit. I do wonder that this change up is due to what some might say was a less than stellar sales performance of Halo 4. I thought it was a great campaign and it looked amaze balls - certainly it was better than Reach but it was no Halo 3 so perhaps sales adjusted accordingly. It just didn't capture the hearts of a lot of casual gamers to reach a mass tipping point of success (sales wise that was H3).

Not so many people appear to be playing  multiplayer - I hardly play that mode these days (which is probably due to being a new father more than anything) but I gather its more widespread - Spartan Ops was awesome but again, I understand it didn't perform as expected.

So I'm thinking given that while Halo 4 was a good game, it wasn't the GREAT AND ULTIMATE Halo game 343 wanted to make and have others perceive as such - so I think they may have gone back to the drawing board in an effort to make the next Halo game able to be conceived as a GREAT AND ULTIMATE Halo game rather than simply being Halo 5, the sequel to the good but not GREAT and ULTIMATE Halo 4.

Wednesday, June 12

Halo: Spartan Assault Achievement Points List

spartan assault

Halo: Spartan Assault is a new game to the Halo series for Windows PC and Tablets - it will still feature Xbox Achievement Points, and here's the list

spartan assault achivement point logo
Complete Operation A
10 Points
Switched On
Complete Operation B
10 Points
Switched Off
Complete Operation C
10 Points
Complete Operation D
10 Points
Complete Operation E
10 Points
Escort Service
Keep all Wolverines intact in Operation A, Mission 3
5 Points
Nowhere to Hide
Prevent all Jackals from regenerating their shield in Operation B, Mission 3
10 Points
Never Knew What Hit Them
Kill a convoy target with every stationary gun in Operation C, Mission 3
10 Points
Brute Force
Finish the objectives using only the Brute Shot, melee and grenades in Operation D, Mission 1
10 Points
Foot Soldier
Finish the objective without using any vehicles/turrets in Operation E, Mission 4
10 Points
Earn a star of any type in an operation mission
5 Points
Earn your first Gold star in an operation mission
5 Points
Earn all Gold stars in all operation missions
20 Points
Distinguished Service
Earn all medals in the game at least once
15 Points
Weapon of Choice
Score a kill with every handheld weapon (excluding Rocket Launcher and Spartan Laser)
5 Points
Powered by MJOLNIR
Use every ability at least once (excluding Overshield and Seeker Drone)
10 Points
Skull Combo
Complete any mission with the maximum number of Skulls active
10 Points
Vidmaster Challenge
Complete Operation 5, Mission 1 with the Hollow and Black Eye Skulls active
15 Points
Extra Credit
Complete 75 challenges
10 Points

Monday, June 10

Spartan Operations is coming back - we've got the date

Did you play the full season of Halo Spartan Ops? Did you LOVE it? Do you WANT more? It's coming back on 25 July:

Four screen shots of the new Halo game

Here's four screenshots released at E3 today on the occassion of the Halo 5 reveal.

halo 5 master chief

Halo 5 announced for Xbox One, could be a Transformers universe crossover !

Halo 5 has been announced and the promotional trailer below suggests that the Master Chief has taken a leaf from Megaton's fashion style book from his appearance in The Dark of the Moon.

Halo 5 will feature at least one new enemy, a big giant bird which could easily be mistaken for Lazerbeak thus completing the long awaited Halo / Transformers universe cross over...

Here's the short trailer:

Technically Halo 5 doesn't have an official name yet!

Tuesday, June 4

Halo Spartan Assault Revealed by 343 - it's a Windows 8 based game

spartan assault halo

Our questions have been answered, Spartan Assault is a new Halo game!

Is this the Halo universe finally becoming like a Mario Kart cash in? It's up for debate as Halo is finally (!) jumping beyond the Xbox console on to the Microsoft Windows 8 platform. What does this mean? There's a new Halo game for PC and tablets that use the MS software.

Is this a good thing for Halo fans? Probably. Will this make the cynics roll their eyes at the cash grab that Halo is? Yes but does any one really care when there is more Halo to be had?

Halo: Spartan Assault looks to be a modern day arcade adventure game - as a watched the trailer I was reminded of the game Commando which I used to play for hours on the Commodore 64 - and if Spartan Assault is half as fun as that game, Halo fans should be well pleased with this latest offering.

343's official description of the game:

Available only for Windows 8 and Windows Phone 8, Halo: Spartan Assault is a new top-down action shooter that brings a Halo video game to touch-based devices for the first time in franchise history. Developed by 343 Industries in conjunction with Vanguard Games, Halo: Spartan Assault provides an accessible, pick-up-and-play experience for fans and newcomers alike.

  • Original "Halo" gameplay. An action-packed, single-player campaign spanning 25 missions in battles never before experienced in the Halo Universe, all played from a top-down camera view
  • New and immersive storyline. An original story set between the events of "Halo 3" and "Halo 4," experience a new war with the Covenant, the first missions of the Spartan Ops program and the rise of Commander Sarah Palmer, all with best-in-class graphics and audio
  • Built for simplicity. A unique fusion of touch and consolelike controls for easy pick-up-and-play gaming, with the added flexibility of keyboard and mouse controls on Windows 8 PCs and tablets2
  • Integration with "Halo 4." Earn experience points (XP), all-new Achievements, and unlock emblems for your "Halo 4" Spartan career, with additional integration features available after launch
  • Nonstop competitive fun. Compete against friends in Leaderboards or hone your skills against an onslaught of Weekly Challenges while collecting more than 40 in-game Achievements and Medals
  • In-app purchases. Grind to earn upgrades or speed up your training by purchasing credits for boosts, unique weapons or armor abilities
  • Only on Windows. Available only on Windows 8 PCs and tablets and Windows Phone 8 devices.

Monday, June 3

What is Halo Spartan Assault?

Spartans like to party!
First there was Halo: Bootcamp rumors emanating from Korea, now Fusible has found that Microsoft has obtained domain name registrations for various titles which we'll collective call Halo: Spartan Assaullt

So what's going on? Is this tied to Halo 5 which punters are punting on 343 Industries announcing at E3 Expo in a couple of weeks? Is this a new game? Is this related to Halo: Bootcamp?

Time will tell.

Here's the domain names secured: