Halo 4 studio 343 Industries wants to bring the franchise to as many formats – both digital and physical – as possible, according to a new interview with Halo: Spartan Assault lead designer Mike Ellis.
It follows confirmation that Halo: Spartan Assault will launch on Xbox One, December 24. Hit the link for more details.
Speaking with VentureBeat, Ellis said, “343’s looking to have Halo experiences in as many formats as possible. You can look through our portfolio now. We have games. We have books on the New York Times bestseller list. We have toys and things like Mega Blocks and McFarlane figures. Halo is bigger than any one game. We see it as an entire universe of experiences.”
While off-shoots of the Halo brand on other formats must retain the franchise’s core elements, the games must still feel purpose-built for that platform. It’s a wise move, seeing as shoe-horning a console experience into a touch device like a tablet has often proved a recipe for disaster.
Ellis added, “The games have a lot of the same values. A lot of the building blocks of the core gameplay are the same. It was just a matter making sure that this version of the game was appropriately native to the console. We went in and looked at it as if it was a console game from the ground up, and evaluated what changes needed to be made to make it a successful console shooter.”
The game’s coming to Windows 8, Xbox 360 and Xbox One, but Ellis stressed that parity of experience was important to 343. “If you’re a casual gamer who’s never experienced playing on a console, you might be happier with the phone or tablet versions,” he explained. “A PC gamer would be more comfortable with a keyboard and mouse. Our console fans should be very happy with the controller.”
Regardless of platform, Ellis feels, “We’ve created a game that looks like Halo, sounds like Halo, and plays like Halo. We see it as another part of the Halo universe.”
What’s your view?