Bungie have called time on their support for Halo stats, releasing a new infographic that shows just how much love and devotion has been pumped into the multiplayer aspects of the games over the years.
"We have followed your careers with great interest here on Bungie.net, and you have gifted us a mountain of heroic moments to memorialize," wrote community manager DeeJ.
"It is with a sense of awe that we step back and admire the impact that you have had on our games, and upon our studio. Thanks for sharing your stories with us."Click here to read more...
Microsoft has launched a limited-time promotion to attract new subscribers to Xbox Live Gold (the full Xbox 360 online service). The offer, which is available directly through the Xbox 360 dashboard, gifts new customers Halo: Reach, Fable III, Kinect Sports, The Gunstringer and Toy Soldier for free when they buy a six month Xbox Live Gold subscription for £26.66.
This might seem pricey, but the five games would normally cost £125 if downloaded via Xbox Live.
The promotion is not available to current Xbox Live Gold users and ends on April 3rd 2012. [Gamerzines]
You would have thought Microsoft's marketing campaign for Halo Reach might have calmed down a bit now, considering its been eight months since the game released. But according to Microsoft, 200 million dollars on opening day and countless million since just isn't enough, as they've released a three-pronged demo onto Xbox LIVE, featuring a slice of the campaign, multiplayer and Firefight.
And in related news, Microsoft will drop the price of Halo Reach to £40 through their Games on Demand service; although please just check here for a much better deal. But if you really do need convincing, the demo features the pretty spectacular 'Long Night of Solace' mission, where Noble Team break through Covenant forces to reach a UNSC facility and commandeer spacecraft. The multiplayer level on offer is Powerhouse, a fan-favorite, although the Firefight map remains unnamed. [Halo Waypoint]
What to say about Halo Reach? Bungie’s prequel delivers massive thrills, a great campaign, one of the best multiplayer suites to have ever graced a videogame… and a credits system that blends it into one holistic experience. On the other hand, it was also uniquely disappointing to fans of the series, who were dismayed to find much of the traditional vehicle-based insanity replaced with good ol’ fashioned ground pounding. I’d still heartily recommend it to any and all, but for the love of God, play the campaign on Heroic. ‘Normal’ just doesn’t do it justice.
Oh, and feel free to share your best file shares with us! If you can beat my epic overkill (above)…
Here's a deal if you're looking to update your old 360 and grab a pretty good game in the process, in fact I wish I'd waited and not rushed ahead and updated mine a couple of months ago! The £159 price tag should make you a saving of almost £11 if you're grabbing the console with Fable 3, and almost £9 if you're a Halo fan, so get yourself down to Currys whilst stocks last! Thanks to flasm1 @ HUKD.
Looks like chocolate's not the only thing you should be buying this Easter, there are some pretty tasty Xbox 360 slim deals over at Game. You can get a 250 Gb console with Kinect for £219.98, which'll save you around £10 over picking them up separately. The other 250 Gb consoles come with games; grabbing one with Halo Reach'll save you almost £8; one with Forza 3 Ultimate Edition'll save you almost £2; and one with Fable 3'll save you almost £10. Happy shopping! Thanks to Sholeo @ HUKD.
The multiplayer support for Halo: Reach continues with 3 more maps dropping today, including the first ever downloadable Firefight map. The maps include a giant orbital station set above the burning, ruined planet, an abandoned civilian mining complex and a military training facility hidden deep within woodland. As per usual, these three will set you back 800 MSP, which is either daylight robbery or relatively cheap, pixellated crack.
You can expect to earn a few Achievements though, with the map pack throwing an additional 150 potential Gamerscore points into the mix.
The map pack was developed in conjunction with Certain Affinity and its release today also marks the availability of Halo: Reach on the Games On Demand service.Check out the press release after the jump for more details on the three maps...
You can now get your hands on Halo Reach, and enough Microsoft Points to grab a map pack, for £24.85, which is just over £5 cheaper than the deal from Sendit that Felix posted almost a month ago. Whilst the story behind Reach isn't anything special, it's crammed full of action! However, the single player's just a distraction from the multiplayer, which is where you'll spend the majority of your time and once you jump into the online world it's hard to pull yourself away. If you've not played Reach yet, then now's your chance.
It’s taken almost 6 months, but even the mighty Halo: Reach has now fallen below the £20 price mark. It may have not been the instant classic some were hoping and it didn’t win any GOTY awards, but it’s an incredibly solid shooter that took the Halo franchise in a more gritty direction and included a well-rounded multiplayer experience. For the price, it’s a great deal for those that skipped it at launch, or for those that traded it in and want to get back in the action. Thanks to machinegooner @ HUKD!
Okay, we admit it. Microsoft's showcase was nowhere near as big enough as we- or anyone- predicted. Surprisingly, no new titles were revealed and the industry isn't reeling from earth-shattering revelations. There's still some interesting developments, mind: including a date for Halo Reach's Defiant Map Pack, some new Fable III DLC and several games offering 3D on the Xbox 360. We've rounded it all up into one place for your comfort and convenience.Click here for more details...
While it's not quite the cheapest deal for game itself, Send It's offer of Halo Reach + 800 MS Points for just £29.89 is a chunk of generosity we just couldn't resist sharing. All in all, it's a pretty good saving if you purchased each item separately. Not to mention, Reach has just some DLC out, the Noble Map Pack, which just so happens to be 800 MS Points. A coincidence? I think not. Superstitious suspicions aside, this is a great deal for anyone who has yet to sample Bungie's Halo swansong.
It's a dark day for Activision... as well as the last few dedicated fans who still cling to their plastic guitars. During their annual financial statement, Activision CEO Bobby Kotick has confirmed that the Guitar Hero, DJ Hero and True Crime: Hong Kong franchises have been completely axed (along with their studios) in order to concentrate on the Call Of Duty franchise.
Due to continued declines in the music genre, the company will disband Activision Publishing’s Guitar Hero business unit and discontinue development on its Guitar Hero game for 2011. The company also will stop development on True Crime: Hong Kong™. These decisions are based on the desire to focus on the greatest opportunities that the company currently has to create the world’s best interactive entertainment experiences. - Activision's Bobby Kotick
With Rock Band's future all but destroyed by Harmonix's departure from the Viacom family, this practically marks the death of the music game as we know it... along with around 5000 job losses. See you at the crossroads, Guitar Heroes.
Perhaps the most bizarre decision to come out of this recent press release is the canning of True Crime: Hong Kong. My sources (and our previews) tell me that the project was nearing completion- but Activision COO Eric Hirshberg apparently feels that the franchise is not "good enough" to compete in the open world genre. Time to cancel your preorders, folks.
There also won't be any Tony Hawk titles in 2011, though it's unclear whether the franchise has been ditched altogether.
Like a phoenix rising from the flames, Activision also confirmed that their year-long Beachhead Project has blossomed into a fully-fledged studio. Their remit and objectives are still incredibly vague, but Activision CFO Thomas Tippl suggests that the outfit is currently engaged in creating a new online venture set in the... you guessed it... Call Of Duty universe.
Beachhead will create the best-in-class online community, exclusive content, and a suite of services to supercharge the online gaming experience like never before.
We'll hear more in the "near future," but current speculation suggests that they may be hard at work developing an online dashboard that brings together the Call Of Duty games (much like a mix between Halo Waypoint and Battle.net). We'll keep you posted.
UPDATE: THIS IS HAPPENING.
French fansite Halo Destiny have reportedly snagged some details of a new DLC map pack for Halo Reach. Entitled the Defiant pack, it may offer three new levels: "Condemned," "Unearthed" and "Highlands." Condemned is rumoured to take place on a Covenant Frigate, while the Highlands map apparently takes its cues from High Ground (prominently featuring a covenant cruiser that's in the process of glassing the planet). The original details and pictures have been pulled by Microsoft's request... though a very authentic Flickr account still exists.
Microsoft has yet to officially comment on the matter- but the speed with which they attempted to shut the rumour down is extremely suggestive. For now, file it under watch this space. [Halo Destiny via Joystiq]
We haven't forgotten about the ongoing legal battle between Sony and a cabal of hackers who managed to crack the PS3's tough security. The biggest obstacle facing the software giant is finding out exactly who these individuals are behind their online aliases- and requested Subpoenas from Google, Paypal, Twitter and Youtube in an effort to discover names and home addresses.
Unfortunately for Sony, US District Judge Susan Illston believes that their request represents a gross breach of online privacy and legally denied access to their accounts.
To be honest, this is probably a sound precedent. The idea of billion-dollar companies being able to legally rifle through our PayPal details is chilling to say the least. For Sony, however, it will unfortunately be back to good old fashioned cyber-sleuthing. [PSX-SCENE]
Reach wasn't the triumphant success I was hoping for, but it was a solid, enjoyable effort with - mostly - great visuals, pitch-perfect combat and occasional sparks of typical Bungie brilliance. If you've yet to sample Reach's multifaceted delights, then I think you should click on the link above and check out Amazon's deal. For £17.99, you'll get a six to ten hour campaign, multiplayer with limitless appeal, a newfangled Forge mode that allows you to tinker with maps to your heart's desire, and quite a few little easter eggs.
Let's be clear. we don't necessarily mean dedicated multiplayer games here, but rather the game that offered the best multiplayer experience this year. Unsurprisingly, a good number of nominees came from the FPS side of the room, though it should be noted that Red Dead Redemption and Kane and Lynch 2 came close to making the shortlist. Business as usual for Bungie and Activision, though Ubisoft threw us a curve ball by introducing multiplayer into Assassin's Creed....and making it awesome. Vote for your favourite below...
Click here to see our own shortlist and best multiplayer game of 2010...
Once again we've been rather spoiled for choice when it's come to FPS titles this year. EA kicked things off with a slightly belated attempted at stealing away Modern Warfare 2's crown with Battlefield: Bad Company 2 and most months of the year saw at least one cracking shooter find its way onto the shelves. This was the year of Bungie's Halo swansong, the year that Treyarch stepped out of Infinity Ward's shadow, the year that saw the Medal of Honor and GoldenEye franchises return too. We had a hard time narrowing down our shortlist - and we've expanded the list slightly for your votes - but really when it came down to it, this one was decided after the first couple of rounds of voting.
NB. Hit the thumbnail for price comps and the title for our full reviews where applicable.
Busting out with Frostbite 2.0 and offering a more team-oriented experience than some of the other shooters this year, it was arguably BBC2, more than Medal of Honor, that really challenged Call of Duty's dominance in 2010.
Perhaps not quite and groundbreaking and spellbinding as its progenitor, Bioshock 2 was nevertheless a much better FPS, with some fantastic action and a multiplayer that proved more than a mere afterthought.
After the onset of the Infinity Ward soap opera, all eyes were on underdogs Treyarch to produce something magnificent. Black Ops was certainly that - making tonnes of noise, refusing to take itself too seriously, and mopping up a number of sales records in the process.
Bungie's farewell to the Halo franchise was certainly a Noble effort indeed. As absorbing for five hours as it was for five minutes, Reach came stuffed with something for all comers, delighting fans and newbies alike.
Brooding, atmospheric and idiosyncratic, Metro 2033 impressed many of our writers simply by having the balls to do something a little different. Offering one of the finest FPS experiences of the year it more than made up for its technical shortcomings with an abundance of character.
The little game that no-one saw coming, Singularity essentially took all of the best bits from the best FPS titles of the last ten years and stuck them all into one game. The result was sheer enjoyment for fans of the genre. Derivative? Sure. Fun? Undoubtedly.
It's been one hell of a year- and a fantastic time to be a games journalist. We've had scandals, hype and a ludicrous amount of controversy to sink our teeth into... but it's time to move past all that. We're here because we love games- so without further ado, I'd like to present my personal highs and lows of 2010.
Wait, what? WhaaaAAAAaaat?!
I can hear the incredulous shrieks from here. Sure, I've given games a higher score, but Deadly Premonition breaks every game design rule in the book and still manages to deliver a completely unique and worthwhile experience. The storyline is one of- if not THE- best ever told in a videogame to date, with perfect quirky characters and hilarious dialogue jarring with the overtly mature themes and horrifying exposition. Not to mention that Agent York is one of the most interesting and relatable protagonists in gaming history. There's nothing even remotely like it out there. It isn't so bad that it's good- rather, it's just damn good at what it does.
Put simply, Deadly Premonition is 2010's Killing In The Name Of; an alternative masterpiece that deserves to be lauded above the trendy coiffured hipsters that tend to dominate the scene at Christmas time.
Just go rent it already. So says Mr. Lester.
With so many great Indie titles to consider as my favourite game of the year, I've been under a lot of pressure to come up with an experience that's genuinely monopolised most of my time and affection. I decided to spend some time in my comfort zone: tense games of Team SWAT on Halo Reach where muscle memory and reflexes could let my mind wander onto the subject at hand. And that's when it hit me. By becoming my go-to game, my home away from home on Xbox Live, Reach has become my favourite game of 2010.Read on to find out WHY, as well as the rest of this year's picks
Christmas is almost upon us, so why not make someone's day with this cut-price deal for Halo Reach at Play? £17.99 for perhaps the most successful single console IP. You can brush up on Reach with Jon's review above, where Noble Team, an elite group of Spartans, are forced to halt the Covenant invasion of Reach. You'll venture into the misty mountain peaks, the rain-swept skies and even Reach's atmosphere aboard a space-ship! The multiplayer is Bungie's usual brand of addictive nonsense, with the added inclusion of Armor Abilities like Jet-Packs and Holograms making matters more chaotic and fun than ever before.
If you missed out on Play’s rather excellent deal for the Limited Collector Edition yesterday and still want to get your hands on Bungie’s final entry into the blockbuster FPS series, then this bargain price for Halo: Reach should sort you out. Included with the game is a DLC code for a Spartan Recon helmet variant for you to customise your character both online and offline ahead of grind for unlocks in the eternal quest to pimp out your armour. As for the game itself, while the storyline doesn’t quite live up to the legacy left by the Master Chief, it’s an entertaining and good looking affair, even when the Covenant are coming at you every which way, and if you’ve managed to hold off getting it until now then this price point definitely makes it worth a look.
I've never been the biggest Halo fan but I can't deny the appeal of this lavish collectors' edition of the newest instalment to the series. The obligatory fancy packaging is actually tied in with the game and made up to look like an ONI black box and the game comes bundled with an "artifact bag" which contains Dr. Halsey's personal journal and other bits and pieces which illuminate some of the more murky areas of the Halo world. While the game is considered a disappointment to many Halo fans, it's well worth playing and at this price the special edition would make an excellent birthday gift. Thanks to ezypc at HUKD!
What to say about Halo Reach? Bungie's prequel delivers massive thrills, a great campaign, one of the best multiplayer suites to have ever graced a videogame... and a credits system that blends it into one holistic experience. On the other hand, it was also uniquely disappointing to fans of the series, who were dismayed to find much of the traditional vehicle-based insanity replaced with good ol' fashioned ground pounding. I'd still heartily recommend it to any and all, but for the love of God, play the campaign on Heroic. 'Normal' just doesn't do it justice.
Oh, and feel free to share your best file shares with us! If you can beat my epic overkill (above)...