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Halo 'No Longer Just a Game' For Microsoft

Zonk posted more than 6 years ago | from the hasn't-been-for-a-while dept.

XBox (Games) 115

News.com has a piece looking at the way that Halo has transformed from game to franchise for Microsoft and the Xbox. Despite the heavy advertising and branded products that seem to be everywhere in anticipation of next week's launch, the company is still trying to keep the IP as pure as possible. "Microsoft is wary of watering down Halo, meaning it would rather walk away from deals for Master Chief pajamas or Covenant sippy cups. Microsoft had little experience in talking to toymakers and others about how to transfer an onscreen experience to real objects. But such experts exist in the licensing arms of movie studios, so Microsoft partnered with 20th Century Fox to act as the main licensing agent for the Halo brand. Items that did not make the cut were a Halo-themed lottery ticket, lingerie modeled after a female hologram character, and toy guns based on the game's weapons. Instead, fans can expect high-quality action figures from McFarlane Toys, a tabletop game from WizKids, and replica weapons for mature buyers."

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115 comments

But toy guns DID make the cut (3, Funny)

Have Blue (616) | more than 6 years ago | (#20687913)

Re:But toy guns DID make the cut (1)

EggyToast (858951) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689615)

So did cups -- you can get your collectible official Halo 3 Big Gulp at 7-11.

Re:But toy guns DID make the cut (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20690653)

cups? Oh yeah... I thought you meant the kind you put inside a jock strap. Athletic cups.

Re:But toy guns DID make the cut (1)

Varvs (1105931) | more than 6 years ago | (#20691275)

if you read the article again, youll see that the TOY guns did not make the cut, but the replica, laser-tag system did. From above: Instead, fans can expect high-quality action figures from McFarlane Toys, a tabletop game from WizKids, and replica weapons for mature buyers."

Re:But toy guns DID make the cut (1)

steveo777 (183629) | more than 6 years ago | (#20695113)

Apparently, your sarcasm detectors have been replaced with replicas as well...

Re:But toy guns DID make the cut (1)

ILuvRamen (1026668) | more than 6 years ago | (#20692671)

personally I'd prefer a fuel rod airsoft gun. That's be awesome!

"MasterChief"? (1)

Recovering Hater (833107) | more than 6 years ago | (#20687929)

Just having a character named "Masterchief" always seemed like overkill to me.

Re:"MasterChief"? (4, Informative)

tacroy (813477) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688099)

Re:"MasterChief"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20690771)

naval rank? Oh yeah... I thought you meant "navel rank," referring to the stench of a navel.

i'm here to kick ass and make soup (4, Funny)

User 956 (568564) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688121)

Just having a character named "Masterchief" always seemed like overkill to me.

Well, it was supposed to be Masterchef [answers.com] , but they couldn't get Steven Seagal to sign on, so they had to change it at the last minute.

Re:i'm here to kick ass and make soup (1)

UbuntuDupe (970646) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688685)

Yeah, apparently, Seagal refused to do it unless they gave him another chance to deliver his "Nobody beats me in the kitchen" line.

Re:"MasterChief"? (2, Informative)

kurokaze (221063) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688295)

Because Master Chief (in actuality it's Master Chief Petty Officer, but Master Chief for short) is a rank in the US Navy, the highest non-commissioned officer rank.

And wouldn't you know it.... practically all space games use naval terminology.

Re:"MasterChief"? (5, Interesting)

paganizer (566360) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688809)

It never confused me at all; I'm ex-Navy and it made perfect sense to make the main hero a Master Chief.
They are godlike characters, answerable to no one; they can not be busted in rank in any normal fashion, Officers fear them, enlisted both fear them and are protected by them.

Re:"MasterChief"? (1)

kurokaze (221063) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689705)

It never confused me either (I'm army). The Master Chief would the equivalent to a Chief Warrant Officer of a Regiment, pretty much answerable only to the CO (although technically he is answerable to the officers, but that doesn't happen in practice).

Re:"MasterChief"? (1)

fractoid (1076465) | more than 6 years ago | (#20691185)

"Chief Warrant" doesn't quite have the same ring to it, somehow...

Re:"MasterChief"? (2, Interesting)

paganizer (566360) | more than 6 years ago | (#20692697)

Actually it's the same as Sergeant Major (E9), rankwise. in practice it's different, A Navy command Master Chief is differed to by everyone but the actual Officer in charge of the command, and they will be darned polite.

  Navy also has warrant ranks, the only difference is in the navy you have to be a Chief (E7+) before you make warrant, while in the Army you can get there from E5+.

maybe it's not overkill (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20688371)

since Master Chief [wikipedia.org] is an actual rank. Maybe it's not so much overkill as it is.. not different than any other military reference. My roomate was ROTC and he refered to their Master Chief as simply "Master Chief". It's not that unusual.

Re:"MasterChief"? (1)

njfuzzy (734116) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688399)

Ah, but you haven't seen his daughter from the adult-only sequel they have planned.

Re:"MasterChief"? (4, Informative)

powerlord (28156) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688447)

Well ... I haven't played any of the Halo series (not my cup of tea), but I always assumed that Master Chief was just the guys title. Similar to how you see the some characters referred to just by title in Books/Movies, I assumed that referring to this faceless character by title only was a plot device to help draw the player into the world, since the dialog would refer to someone/something they could be, instead of using a third parties name (that wasn't theirs).

In the "Real World" U.S. Navy & Coast Guard [wikipedia.org] "Master Chief Petty Officer is the ninth, and highest, enlisted rank (E-9) in the U.S. Navy and U.S. Coast Guard, just above Senior Chief Petty Officer, and is a non-commissioned officer. They are referred to as Master Chief in most circumstances."

From the bottom of the same Wikipedia page: "In the Halo video game series, SPARTAN-117 (John), more commonly called the Master Chief, the protagonist of the series, holds the rank of Master Chief Petty Officer in the United Nations Space Command."

Re:"MasterChief"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20691723)

Well ... I haven't played any of the Halo series (not my cup of tea), but I always assumed that Master Chief was just the guys title.

It is, and the rest of the game reminds you in various dialog points that he's not regarded by everyone as human. Some soldiers even refer to him as "a Mk. 5" (and a Mk 6 in Halo 2). Then the obvious hiding of his face when he removes his helmet.

I always found the start of Halo 2 kind of funny, with the armory officer calling you, a seven foot tall walking can of whoop-ass, "son".

Re:"MasterChief"? (1)

MBraynard (653724) | more than 6 years ago | (#20692149)

I don't think that language denotes they didn't consider him human. The suit may be what they were referring to.

The 'son' thing is an age thing, I'd guess.

Re:"MasterChief"? (1)

StarvingSE (875139) | more than 6 years ago | (#20694627)

Or they can go by way of Metroid and we'll find out Master Chief is female...

Re:"MasterChief"? (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20692081)

I just have to say, both my father and grandfather acheived the rank of Master Chief in the Navy. When I was growing up and I told kids that my dad was in the military, they always asked me what rank he was. I always felt a little let down when I saw that "Master Chief" never got the same recognition as "Master Sergeant" or even "Corporal", because I felt that it didn't accuratley describe what a tough son-of-a-bitch my dad was.

Thanks to Halo, however, the title "Master Chief" gets the name recognition it deserves. It's not an easy, everyday thing to acheive. My brother, who was in the Navy for 16 years, saw less than 5 Master Chiefs during his service.

So all hail the Master Chief from Halo, because an E-9, no matter the service, is a motivated, intelligent, bad-ass individual and deserves to be recognized.

Re:"MasterChief"? (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20688547)

Overkill? More like Overlame.

It is hard to think of another gaming mascot or character that is lamer than a guy completely covered in shiny green metal.

Are there people who still think seeing 'shiny metal' on stuff in a video game is somehow still cool? Maybe back in the late 1990s or even early 2000s. But now with state of the art character graphics having flowing hair, accurate skin lighting, realistic facial animation, flowing dynamic clothing.

A character completely covered in the cheap to render shiny metal material with no face or hair or clothing is just pathetic.

Re:"MasterChief"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20688827)

It's an FPS, why does it matter what the Master Chief looks like? I recall secondary characters from the series that aren't in your hated "shiny metal" armor.

Re:"MasterChief"? (1)

provigilman (1044114) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688987)

Yes, so much better to have a scantily clad woman with long flowing hair and (un)realistic "upper body physics" that just so happens to be able to flip over tanks and absorb a grenade or rocket at almost point blank range. In other words...Samus without the (all metal covering her entire body BTW) armor.

Of course, if Master Chief looked like that I'm sure you'd be here complaining about how "it's totally unrealistic".

Re:"MasterChief"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20692357)

Don't forget we're talking about XBox here.

Re:"MasterChief"? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20690603)

shut yer commie piehole, you OSS fruitloop.

Why don't we have licensed bedsheets anymore? (1)

tarun713 (782737) | more than 6 years ago | (#20687993)

Why don't game companies capitalize on their characters? With increased game development costs this could offset those greatly. Back in the 80s there was tons of Nintendo gear around - action figures, pillow covers, sheets, cups, t-shirts, etc. Really, I don't understand why they don't have stuff like this. It would sell like mad.

Re:Why don't we have licensed bedsheets anymore? (2, Funny)

Drinking Bleach (975757) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688087)

Probably the #1 reason Mario even got popular :)

Re:Why don't we have licensed bedsheets anymore? (4, Funny)

Gropo (445879) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688157)

I miss my Pac Man sheets. I wonder if anyone sells retro ones in Queen size these days.
Oh, never mind I share that bed with a female. Yes, I'm new here.

Re:Why don't we have licensed bedsheets anymore? (1)

brjndr (313083) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689531)

I used to have a transformers tent that attached to my twin bed like sheets. My mom gave it away after we got older, but during my freshman year in college when I shared a room in the dorms I thought about how useful that would have been when a girl stayed over.

Re:Why don't we have licensed bedsheets anymore? (2, Funny)

markbt73 (1032962) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689725)

Do you really think Transformers sheets would have helped you to get a girl to stay over?

No, I'm New Here (1)

New Here (701369) | more than 6 years ago | (#20690499)

No, I'm New Here

Re:Why don't we have licensed bedsheets anymore? (1)

ucblockhead (63650) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688163)

They have to be very careful in today's political environment. For instance, a "Halo" lunchbox, pillow-case, etc. opens them up to the "marketing to children" charge, not something they want to face for an M rated game.

Re:Why don't we have licensed bedsheets anymore? (1)

tarun713 (782737) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688251)

Yeah, I know this story is about Halo, but speaking from a wider perspective about licensing in general for even the characters aimed at younger kids - Mario, Sonic, Crash Bandicoot, Ratchet & Clank, Jak, basically anyone from Smash Bros., or heck, to target an older demographic, Liberty City shot glasses, t-shirts can be made with any characters, with inside jokes from games and things.

Piñata Crossing (1)

tepples (727027) | more than 6 years ago | (#20691883)

For instance, a "Halo" lunchbox, pillow-case, etc. opens them up to the "marketing to children" charge, not something they want to face for an M rated game.
Then do it with characters from Piñata Crossing [wikipedia.org] or Banjo-Kazooie or some other Rare game (but not Conker, as that's M too).

Double standard alert! (1)

PhoenixOne (674466) | more than 6 years ago | (#20694071)

You're right, and me without mod points

In today's political environment (in the US at least), a lunchbox based on a M-Rated game would cause hell. But you can have a lunchbox based on an R-Rated movie [amazon.com] that tells you 3rd grader that he's dining in hell.

Re:Why don't we have licensed bedsheets anymore? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20688207)

Back in the 80s there was tons of Nintendo gear around - action figures, pillow covers, sheets, cups, t-shirts, etc. Really, I don't understand why they don't have stuff like this. It would sell like mad.
Halo 3 is rated M if I am not mistaken? I am sure lots of parents would bitch and moan about childrens toys for M games. I on the other hand would like an official Hot Coffee Cup!

Re:Why don't we have licensed bedsheets anymore? (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20688239)

Licensed bedsheets? The game is rated MA. Nothing says virgin quite like a 21 year old with Cortana plastered across your bed.

Re:Why don't we have licensed bedsheets anymore? (1)

the_tsi (19767) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688415)

Nin. ten. do. It's a cereal, now!

Nin. ten. do. For breakfast? WOW!

Re:Why don't we have licensed bedsheets anymore? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20690933)

We're not kids anymore and might not beg our parents for a set of Halo sheets.

Re:Why don't we have licensed bedsheets anymore? (1)

rtb61 (674572) | more than 6 years ago | (#20691807)

It was a thinner market back then, with less quality games to draw consumer attention. This article comes of more as a fluff marketing piece to keep Halo and the xbox in the news, in the public mind space as yet another boring marketing exercise.

Halo has only a fraction of the game identity that Doom, Quake or even Half Life had or even non FPS like Starcraft or Command and conquer, and where are they now.

All it really has is a ton of M$ marketing B$, any bit of crap journalism is good as the game nears it's release date, what ever happened to the good old dishonest it's already sold out marketing campaign, oh that's right.

Re:Why don't we have licensed bedsheets anymore? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20694375)

Halo has only a fraction of the game identity that Doom, Quake or even Half Life had or even non FPS like Starcraft or Command and conquer, and where are they now.

Honestly, if Halo does even half as well as all these, it'd be doing great. Doom is in its third iteration, with a big movie under its belt, Quake is on its fourth iteration and well loved, and Half Life 1 and 2 are in the top 5 best games ever, according to metacritic. Starcraft has almost an entire nation worshiping it and its soon-to-be sequel, and Command & Conquer is also doing well.
And to be honest, Halo is more well known than perhaps most of these Titles. It's truly a really well-known game.

Items that did not make the cut were... lingerie (4, Funny)

trdrstv (986999) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688035)

Items that did not make the cut were a Halo-themed lottery ticket, lingerie modeled after a female hologram character...

WHY the HELL NOT?!?!?!

Re:Items that did not make the cut were... lingeri (1)

SnoopJeDi (859765) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688077)

Don't forget the lottery ticket. THIS IS MADNESS

Re:Items that did not make the cut were... lingeri (5, Funny)

PJ1216 (1063738) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688573)

Madness?! This is Sparta!

Re:Items that did not make the cut were... lingeri (2, Interesting)

C0rinthian (770164) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689161)

Madness?! This is Sparta!
You know, this is strangely appropriate for the Halo franchise...

Re:Items that did not make the cut were... lingeri (1)

pushing-robot (1037830) | more than 6 years ago | (#20690495)

Madness?! This is Sparta!

You know, this is strangely appropriate for the Halo franchise...
More than you know. Near the end of the third game, the Master Chief takes off his helmet and... Well, I guess I won't spoil it.

Re:Items that did not make the cut were... lingeri (1)

SnoopJeDi (859765) | more than 6 years ago | (#20694663)

More than you know. Near the end of the third game, the Master Chief takes off his helmet and... Well, I guess I won't spoil it.
Snape kills dumbledore.

Re:Items that did not make the cut were... lingeri (1)

jollyreaper (513215) | more than 6 years ago | (#20690633)

Madness?! This is Sparta!
I think the appropriate response is "Not selling out for the fast buck? I thought this was Microsoft!" (balmer kicks a chair down a well)

Re:Items that did not make the cut were... lingeri (1)

Tofystedeth (1076755) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688081)

Come to think of it, some purple/blue and black striped underwear or swimsuits or something wouldn't be half bad.

Re:Items that did not make the cut were... lingeri (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20688275)

I would so buy Cortana (I assume) Lingerie for the GF

Re:Items that did not make the cut were... lingeri (1)

Cyclon (900781) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689163)

Because anyone that would actually buy Halo-themed lingerie would have no chance of ever seeing it in action anyway.

Re:Items that did not make the cut were... lingeri (1)

Allison Geode (598914) | more than 6 years ago | (#20691233)

I'm not really a "fancy underwear" kind of girl, but I would totally buy that.

Re:Items that did not make the cut were... lingeri (1)

PhoenixOne (674466) | more than 6 years ago | (#20693989)

I'm not really a "fancy underwear" kind of girl, but I would totally buy that.

Me too... ah, wait. The other guys still haven't recovered from my Princess Leia outfit... ;)

Crap (2, Funny)

FauxPasIII (75900) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688139)

My wife would have _loved_ a Cortana teddy.

Re:Crap (5, Funny)

Tofystedeth (1076755) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688165)

I would have _loved_ my wife in a Cortana teddy.
Fix'd

Re:Crap (1)

FauxPasIII (75900) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688185)

You're not wrong. =)

Re:Crap (1, Funny)

Surt (22457) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688767)

I would have liked to have _loved_ my wife in a Cortana teddy, had she not left me over it.
Fix'd
You missed a couple minor typos. Fix'd.

7-11 Slurpees (1)

samuraiknight (897383) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688215)

So what are those Halo 3-branded Slurpees at 7-11 then? And the copies that will be sold at gas stations?

Next week's launch?!? (1)

StikyPad (445176) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688261)

Hmm, I just assumed it launched yesterday. What? Oh.. no reason.

Re:Next week's launch?!? (1)

sjpm (30128) | more than 6 years ago | (#20690723)

Yes, almost funny that their #1 exclusive got leaked again. At least this time it's only a few days. If I remember correctly Halo 2 was leaked WAY in advance (but, oddly enough, in French, made for a very humorous game - "Ah Oui Chef!"). But even so, MS is probably fuming at all the (dumb) people playing it on live already...

Uh huh (3, Funny)

MBCook (132727) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688307)

I've got to say, when I first started to see all the marketing crud they are doing for Halo 3 I thought it was pathetic. The "game fuel" thing really clenched it for me.

I think Ctrl+Alt+Del captured it [cad-comic.com] .

Re:Uh huh (1)

Ant P. (974313) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689821)

IMO Penny Arcade nailed it better.

Re:Uh huh (2, Informative)

Hotawa Hawk-eye (976755) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689869)

So did Penny Arcade [penny-arcade.com] .

Re:Uh huh (1)

i.of.the.storm (907783) | more than 6 years ago | (#20690937)

Yeah, I'd like to second PA's take being much better. PA just has that awesome style.

Re:Uh huh (1)

MBraynard (653724) | more than 6 years ago | (#20692317)

They were both pretty lame.

Halo Marketing - Pathetically Desperate (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20688395)

Four years ago or so Microsoft let the gaming world know that they were on notice that Halo 2 was about to ship and everyone better start making plans to just deal with the fact.

> Millions in online and print media hype was bought by their marketing types
> Xbox fans were on the net 24/7 warning the rest of the gaming world that Halo was coming
> All sorts of 'marketing arrangements' aka $$$ were made with various online gaming sites for over the top previews

Halo 2 was released.

> Microsoft declared victory
> Microsoft's marketing team went into overdrive figuring out was to put out new press releases "Fastest selling game ever that begins with an H..." and the like

And the Xbox continued to flounder with overall worldwide sales unchanged with sales being primarily to a fairly narrow US fanbase of some 10-15 million people.

The Halo games are viewed as average at best by the fps gaming community at large. The only thing notable about them are the absurdly large marketing money Microsoft is able to put into the games. If the Halo games were normal PC games they would be your usual forgettable 7/10 or so fps games.

Instead of spending time and resources diversifying their first party lineup Microsoft appears to have some crazy idea that if they go to unprecedented lengths to hype Halo 3 that gamers who never had any interested in the Xbox or Halo games will suddenly find a desire for the game.

In the end Halo 3 will probably come in somewhere between the first and second Halo games in sales due to the only 10 million or so installed base for the 360. The first Halo was only 5 million or so in sales, Halo 2 was about 7 million with a much larger installed base.

Compared to the real heavy hitters Halo 3 will be fairly insignificant. The GTAs, Marios, Pokemons, Gran Turismos, Final Fantasies are all in the 11-17 million or so range.

Those are the types of game Microsoft should have spent the last few years working on creating for the 360, not this pathetically desperate attempt to make the gaming world want a game they just aren't interested in.

In a month Halo 3 will have come and gone and Microsoft will be still be facing the 360 with worldwide sales that are slower than the first Xbox. And realizing once again that outside of the same people that bought the first two Halos the rest of the gaming world watched in disbelief at the hype over such a mediocre franchise.

Re:Halo Marketing - Pathetically Desperate (2, Informative)

Amani576 (971730) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689149)

It doesn't matter how good of a FPS HALO is... it just doesn't. Because I know myself and some of my friends aren't that good at HALO, or FPS's in general. We play games for stories, and the massive attention to detail that the creators have put in things. And yes, I know, even when it comes to stories HALO may be a bit shallow, but, even still... that's only in-game. Bungie has done a fantastic job of elaborating on the story outside of the game. If you'd look beyond HALO as a mediocre FPS, and more as a diverse, well articulated universe... you'd get over your obvious fanboy-ism to whoever it is you support.
Sure, Microsoft may be funding them (and thus it means they are suckling the teet of Statan *rolls eyes), but, it doesn't mean that Bungie is a bad company, or that they themselves are getting complacent in all the hype. I mean, HALO 2 was over-hyped from the moment it was announced, yet, I still found a very compelling game, all because of the story.
So, shut up - please - about it being an "OK" Shooter, we know that.
It's a story, and IMHO a very deep story.
GR

Re:Halo Marketing - Pathetically Desperate (4, Interesting)

cowscows (103644) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689315)

Bungie's been doing that sort of story driven universe for a while. Halo shares a lot in common with the storyline that ran through the Marathon series, years ago when Bungie was a Mac only developer. I played the original marathon way back when, but never got around to the rest of the trilogy (I think it was a trilogy). But a few years ago I came across a website that basically listed all of the text from the game, almost as a screen play, and reading through it all was a reasonably entertaining story.

The Halo universe might not be 100% original, but it's got a lot of background and detail, and as such has a good bit of potential for future projects. A RTS game of some sort could certainly be interesting, or maybe one day an MMO that finds a way to combine individual soldier combat with large scale spaceship combat and all that. There's nothing insurmountable stopping anyone else from making games like that, but having a reasonably well known and already partially described universe to place the game in gives it more legitimacy and hopefully can give players a more immediate connection to a game.

Re:Halo Marketing - Pathetically Desperate (2, Interesting)

EggyToast (858951) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689673)

Agreed. Halo (and Marathon) may not be divinely inspired, and it may not be The Best Sci-Fi ever. In fact, I don't think anyone would seriously argue that it is. But it has a huge leg-up that many stories that extend into series (or franchises) lack -- consistency. Bungie has a "Halo Bible" and it sticks with it. It presents the sci-fi and then does a pretty good job of avoiding the deus-ex-machina that's exceedingly easy in sci-fi works. You fight against bad guys and, using strategy, tactics, and the things at hand, you win.

Most games can't even stay consistent from start to finish. Halo can be accused of copy-paste level design in spots, but at least the story and actions follow an arc and are internally consistent.

Re:Halo Marketing - Pathetically Desperate (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20689797)

Ah yes, the "My console only has one big name franchise so in my mind I pretend it is something other than an overhyped but dreadfully mediocre set of games" bullshit...

The first Marathon was decent as far as fps go, but unless you are talking to only hardcore Xbots talking about 'teh Halo universe and story' will get you laughed at by gamers.

Re:Halo Marketing - Pathetically Desperate (1)

nuzak (959558) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689767)

Don't forget all the backstory they put into the two Myth games (the third wasn't a Bungie work).

Still, I think Bungie should just change their name to Halo. Microsoft will never let them write another game.

Re:Halo Marketing - Pathetically Desperate (1)

nuzak (959558) | more than 6 years ago | (#20689847)

Incidentally, there is already a Halo RTS coming out. Called, originally enough, Halo Wars. It's made by Ensemble, the Age of Empires guys. Long as they use Bungie's writers, it should come all right. I hope they're not dumb enough to release it at the same time as Starcraft 2 though.

Re:Halo Marketing - Pathetically Desperate (2, Informative)

Stormwatch (703920) | more than 6 years ago | (#20692069)

Halo shares a lot in common with the storyline that ran through the Marathon series, years ago when Bungie was a Mac only developer. I played the original marathon way back when, but never got around to the rest of the trilogy (I think it was a trilogy).
Would you like to play the rest now? Bungie made the series open-source and freely distributable; also, it runs on Windows/Linux/MacOSX. Get it HERE. [bungie.org]

Re:Halo Marketing - Pathetically Desperate (1)

blahplusplus (757119) | more than 6 years ago | (#20692949)

"The Halo universe might not be 100% original, "

The story doesn't matter, Halo sold on gameplay, period. The awesome vehicles, the cool bad-assness of you being "master chief", ultimate soldier. I mean come on.

The master chief soldier aesthetic is near universally appealing to males.

Re:Halo Marketing - Pathetically Desperate (1)

bheekling (976077) | more than 6 years ago | (#20693079)

The Halo universe might not be 100% original,

Ya think? [wikipedia.org]

Re:Halo Marketing - Pathetically Desperate (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20689475)

I don't know how you can spin a game that is platinum before its released as a desperate failure.

You are correct, Halo 2 was outsold by a few PS2 games, and a good number of assorted Nintendo titles. The highest selling PS2 title was GTA: Vice City at 13 million. That's 4 million more than Halo 2 at around 9 million. So that's 1.35 times the total software sales of a console that sold 5 to 6 times the number of consoles. You can't ignore the success that Halo 2 has achieved.

, Wiki's list of bestselling games [wikipedia.org]

Re:Halo Marketing - Pathetically Desperate (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20689751)

Wake silly fanboy, neither Halo game is even in the top twenty all time sellers on consoles.

The only thing notable about the franchise is it is the only thing Microsoft has to talk about. That is an amazing failure after being on the market for some six years now.

And the next four years looks like Microsoft has absolutely nothing that will change that. Microsoft's first party racing games are fiascos, their first party rpgs have turned out to be fiascos.

Bragging about Halo sales when it is the only franchise worth mentioning is nothing more than a stinging indictment of just how bad Microsoft's first party lineup has been and will continue to be over the next few years.

Re:Halo Marketing - Pathetically Desperate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20691003)

you replied to a link showing that halo 2 is in fact, in the top 20 with a statement that it isn't? it's number 18. follow his link and check. I don't even play games much, but i'd say the person willing to ignore presented facts for the sake of his argument is likely the fanboy.

Re:Halo Marketing - Pathetically Desperate (1)

fractoid (1076465) | more than 6 years ago | (#20691283)

So that would make Super Mario Bros. the best game of all time, would it?

...well, yes, actually it would, but that isn't the point!

...well crap. :(

Re:Halo Marketing - Pathetically Desperate (0, Troll)

MBraynard (653724) | more than 6 years ago | (#20692287)

The only thing notable about the franchise is it is the only thing Microsoft has to talk about.

You're a moron. There are several successful franchises for the Xbox- two racing, KOTOR/Bioware, and a bunch of well received hits like Crackdown and Pinanta.

On the other hand, you're just some fat slob posting as an AC of all things on the internet. Maybe if you did something with your life you'd be worth listening to.

Re:Halo Marketing - Pathetically Desperate (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20689671)

Gran Turismo's not quite in the 11-17 million range. The original Gran Turismo was close, but Gran Turismo 4 sold 9 million.

Final Fantasy isn't quite in that range either. Final Fantasy VII sold 10 million. Final Fantasy X sold 8 million. The others have sold less than that. Final Fantasy is a big series, but it's not quite the superstar that internet fanboys make it out to be.

Super Mario Sunshine only sold 6 million, although Mario 64 was a little over 11 million and New Super Mario Bros. is close to 11 million and still selling. Of course all of the older Mario games were much higher than than 11 million.

But I agree Halo is overblown. It has very strong sales, but it's nothing earth shattering.

If they're not making licensed merchandise, (2, Insightful)

joeflies (529536) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688493)

then isn't Halo still "just a game", much to the contrary of the highlighted link?

halo players, mature? (3, Funny)

inzy (1095415) | more than 6 years ago | (#20688595)

"replica weapons for mature buyers"

haha. yeah right, it's so mature and grown-up walking round with a plastic copy of a virtual weapon from a computer game

kudos to MS though, for not putting the brand on anything. the lingerie sounds plain tacky

Re:halo players, mature? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20690599)

Are you kidding? Can you imagine Arielle Kebbel [google.com] (Or Natalie Portman) in Cortana Lingerie... man. I gotta go... uh... just go.

Re:halo players, mature? (1)

Ringthane (415537) | more than 6 years ago | (#20691153)

"haha. yeah right, it's so mature and grown-up walking round with a plastic copy of a virtual weapon from a computer game"

      You don't "walk around with it." You play with the replica BR55 Battle Rifle when no one's around (your office, den, or basement), and then hurriedly put it back on its altar when someone approaches. If you're going to walk around with it, you'd need to put on your home-made $15 Mjolnir Mark VI assault armor. As in:

http://halo.bungie.org/misc/cb_mcsuit.html [bungie.org]

and

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QAF5FxzZ17E [youtube.com]

and

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QAF5FxzZ17E [youtube.com]

I had jumping Marios in my Happy Meal. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20689235)

I grew up with Mario Bros underwear [jivepuppi.com] , Mario Brothers fruit snacks, and little jumping goombas [gamespot.com] in my Happy Meals.

Maybe Microsoft had better leave it to the pros though, how many kids are going to have any clue what the Battlefront hint [gaygamer.net] means?

(sorry, only decent article google could find, no homosexual references on that page if you're afraid)

Ballmer and Gates in Red Versus Blue (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20689823)

Steve Ballmer: Bill! You team-killing fucktard!

Re:Ballmer and Gates in Red Versus Blue (1)

fractoid (1076465) | more than 6 years ago | (#20691317)

Random office sycophant: look out billg! sballmer just picked up the chair-o-nator!

Halo'ed be thy name (1)

theolein (316044) | more than 6 years ago | (#20690077)

Halo is the one Microsoft product that has seriously quality, and, indirectly, they got it from Apple (Bungie used to be a mainly Mac game developer, until Microsoft bought them out in 2000. I bet Steve Jobs is pissed about that one.)

Re:Halo'ed be thy name (1)

Kalriath (849904) | more than 6 years ago | (#20691109)

Uh, no, they didn't get it from Apple. They got it from Bungie. There's a difference.

It's a TRILOGY (1)

solar_blitz (1088029) | more than 6 years ago | (#20690775)

Since this is the last game in the Halo series, how do they expect to keep the franchise afloat on spin-offs alone?

Re:It's a TRILOGY (1)

Conception (212279) | more than 6 years ago | (#20692335)

You know... I'd really wait on calling it the end of the trilogy before it comes out... with their track record and all.

Re:It's a TRILOGY (1)

revengebomber (1080189) | more than 6 years ago | (#20693647)

Maybe CAPCOM will lend them some advice, and we'll end up with things like Super Halo 3 Turbo Deluxe Remix.

"Covenant sippy cup?" (2, Funny)

Allison Geode (598914) | more than 6 years ago | (#20691119)

I think you mean "Official Halo 3 Covenant Grunt Food Nipple(TM):" For when you've worked up a big grunty thirst.

Past toy experience (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20692039)

Microsoft had little experience in talking to toymakers and others about how to transfer an onscreen experience to real objects.

I think Microsoft is just in denial about past humiliations, as usual. [microsoft.com]

"Action" requires more than 2 joints (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 6 years ago | (#20694623)

"high-quality action figures from McFarlane Toys"

Anything from McFarlane these days seem more like cheap plastic statues than high-quality action figures, but I digress.
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