Spencer: MS not looking to turn Halo into annualised franchise

Tuesday, 14 June 2011 10:05 GMT By Johnny Cullen

Microsoft Studios boss Phil Spencer has said the company isn’t looking to turn Halo into an annualised franchise despite the release of several Halo games in the past couple of years and in the future.

Following a two year-long gap after the release of Halo 3 in 2007, three Halo titles have released in two straight years: Bungie’s Halo 3 expansion ODST and Ensemble RTS Halo Wars – the developer’s final game – in 2009 and Reach from the former last year.

With Reach being Bungie’s final contribution to Halo after creating the series in 2001 for the original Xbox, this year will see the release of Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary Edition this November from Saber Interactive, followed by the main event next year: Halo 4 from 343 Industries.

Despite that, Spencer says Microsoft won’t get into the habit of annualising the series further.

“People shouldn’t look at Anniversary as part of an annualized franchise,” Spencer told IGN at E3.

“I love the fact we’re doing the Anniversary edition because I loved Halo 1. We just looked at it and thought it needed to be refreshed. It wasn’t part of us trying to get into an annualized rhythm with the franchise.

“It will be done in time for this holiday that is the 10th Anniversary for Halo. It felt like a good time to celebrate it.”

With the release of Halo: CE Anniversary Edition, will it open the way to more HD reboots? Spencer didn’t rule it out, adding it has talked about a Halo 2 release.

“Obviously Halo 2 is one that we’ve talked about. I wouldn’t say this is a strategy for us to go back and remake Xbox 1 games,” he said.

“This was the 10th Anniversary of Halo so it made sense. We don’t really have a “remasters” program that we’re kicking off with this launch. There are obviously some great Xbox 1 games that would be nice to see, but we’ve focused most of our resources on creating new things. I’m not putting it in or out of bounds right now, though.”