Microsoft: No Console Exclusive Is Bigger Than ‘Halo 4′

Mar 12, 2012 by  

Halo 4 Biggest Console Exclusive

While every genre of gaming these days is jam-packed with high quality properties, that doesn’t mean that it’s become a level playing field. Not many franchises have had their brands or characters break into larger popular culture, but one undeniably iconic gaming figure is the man, the myth, the legend – the Master Chief.

The development team behind Halo 4 is well aware of the Chief’s significance to not just the strength of the Halo brand, but to the Xbox 360 as well.

Occasionally a series dealing with science-fiction that spans multiple alien species and interstellar conflicts can grow a little too big for its britches, but that just doesn’t seem to be the case for Halo 4. The team at 343 Industries may not be the team that first created the character of Master Chief Petty Officer John-117, but the value of the character isn’t lost on them.

Since the first look at Halo 4 story and gameplay showed how the personal history of the Chief would be taking center stage over the enemy types or weaponry, it’s been evident for some time that 343 is looking to take the series in a new direction. The series may have become less of a straightforward property with spin-off titles Halo Wars, Halo 3: ODST and Halo: Reach, but the return to the quintessential space marine also means a return to what first made the Microsoft Xbox a legitimate console.

In speaking with MCV, Xbox global marketing director Steve Beinner explained how Halo and its hero are in elite company in the world of video games:

“Bringing Master Chief back is huge…Honestly, there’s not many franchises that have done what Halo has. There’s not many that have broken through and sold that much. You named two of them, GTA and Call of Duty. But if you look at platform exclusives, nothing is bigger than Halo.”

While some Halo fans may disagree with Microsoft in claiming that the series had “lost its way” in straying from the Master Chief, there’s no denying the fact that his absence has been noticeable to say the least. Executive Producer Kiki Wolfkill also emphasized the significance of his return, and how building a new trilogy of games around his life was the right choice:

“Halo has missed Master Chief a little bit. And that’s not to take anything away from the games that were off the main line. But we’ve built so much equity in Chief and really such a strong icon in Chief, that I do think people missed a little bit not being able to see what he was doing next. He is such a strong focal point.”

With the shift from absolute mystery concerning the game to hearing that the campaign is already completed, it’s hard not to get excited for what Halo 4 could bring. It’s even harder to disagree with Microsoft that Halo is the king of console exclusives, so returning to Master Chief seems like a no-brainer. But even though Bungie’s co-founder trusts 343 to deliver a quality game, there will no doubt be naysayers until the game is released.

Do you think the development team is right to return to Master Chief, or would you have preferred to see more of the expanded fiction incorporated into the game series?

Halo 4 is scheduled to release in 2012, exclusively for the Xbox 360.

Follow me on Twitter @andrew_dyce.

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Source: MCV

38 Comments

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  1. Nothing is bigger than Halo, huh? And Microsoft said that? MY MIND IS BLOWN!

  2. Well Microsoft would say that, wouldn’t they?

  3. I agree. For the Xbox, at least

    • No kidding. I mean Sony has Uncharted and the shadow of the colossus not to mention God of war games.

      And need I mention Mario? Zelda? Those 2 are pretty big. Honestly I think one of the biggest though, would probably be Pokemon. imo.

      • Well Nintendo is on a whole other planet, but it’s pretty clear that PS3 exclusives can’t hold a candle to Xbox 360′s. Not just my opinion, that’s sales numbers.

        • heh yeah they are in that area.

          I honestly thought Uncharted did better. I mean with the constant posts about the latest one I thought it did better then it did. Every gaming site was posting rave reviews about the game. I asked friends about it too, they all said it was a fantastic game. I guess I figured it would have sold more.

          It’s funny if you look at what the major Titles like Call of Duty sold, (according to vgchartz.com) you will see that CoD was dwarfed by Pokemon, it’s about 1/3 the amount of sales it did when compared to Pokemon, if I remember correctly.

          • Yeah I agree Uncharted was way different. Its a good game to play when youre sick of all the shooters. and Pokemon? I dont like the new ones, Iv played up to Silver version on GB Color and not passed that. But

        • Wow, I hadn’t realized how huge the Halo franchise’s sales have been compared to anything on PS3. And they’ve really milked it for all it’s worth.

        • i lol’d at that, ofc they have bigger sale numbers because they have more systems sold. besides if you think halo is a good game, then you must have not played them because IMO they are rather boring

      • I have to agree with you pokemon mario and zelda are all way bigger than halo.

      • I agree with you, I think Pokemon or Mario are gaming’s biggest exclusives. Zelda is awesome but not as known by the public as the other two. Plus most people think Zelda is the guy

  4. Mass Effect series is bigger and better, well thats excluding the Mass Effect 3 endings

    • They’re talking about exclusives. The Mass Effect series isn’t exclusive, only Mass Effect 1 is.

  5. haha bi**ch Microsoft i thinks they didn’t see GTA V and MAX PAYNE 3 or HITMAN or RESIDENT EVIL 6 or MASS EFFECT 3 or ASSASSINS CREED 3 . again bit*h mirosoft !

    • number 1, he said halo is the biggest “Exclusive” game, not any of those games you listed are exclusive to a single platform

    • I think you overlooked the word “Exclusive.” None of the games you just listed are exclusive

    • Yeah overlooked Exclusive and also the fact that ALL of those (Except GTA) are smaller than Halo. Also, the games you mentioned aren’t even out besides ME3, and the article was talking about what Halo has previously done for the Xbox. AGAIN BITCH ROCKSTAR GAMES LOVER!

  6. Stop posting s*** about ME3! This is halo 4! I haven’t played ME3 yet mostly because I haven’t found a N7 Collector’s edition yet (but I have!) Anywho, yes Master Chief is iconic now. And I mean, up there with Mario. As for Halo 4, The series wouldve been pitch perfect if Master Chief had died. Why? Because he sacrificed himself and joined his fellow spartans. It wouldve showed the amount of dedication he had to preserve life. Of course, Microsoft needs dat moneyz so he lived.

    Whatever, I’ll still play it and see what comes of it.

  7. So psyched for this. Halo 4 is what I’ve been waiting for since halo reach

  8. Halo isn’t even all that great IMO. To be honest I think Halo 4 should be next-gen, and returning to Master Chief (an icon with no character) seems kind of dumb, considering Halo 3′s ending (if I remember correct).

    Not being a fan boy, I’d probably buy an Xbox 720 with the right price and exclusives. I just think Master Chief should rest, bringing him back seems like a dairyng move (see what I did there?) We don’t want Master Chief taking a trip to the MILKY way.

    Considering Microsoft has so little exclusives and less memorable, of course Halo takes the cake. But I could be wrong and I’m MANY others will disagree.

    • Excellent wordplay, sir!

    • You do not remember correctly. The legendary ending to 3 showed Chief floating off to a mysterious planet. You also mention MC as having no character. While that was true, 343i says they’re gonna be exploring his personality. Plus in about 10 years they’ve had 4 main games. I don’t consider that milking.

      • When trying to determine whether a franchise is being milked or not, you can’t just disregard the “side” titles. Having a bunch of side titles is kind of a definitive aspect of milking.

        • Good point, but I still don’t think it’s milked, even with Wars and ODST. I really wouldn’t add CEA, seeing as it’s the exact same thing as CE, but I guess some would. At least it’s not a yearly franchise.

          • Yeah, it ain’t no Assassin’s Creed or Madden, or Mario Party, but it’s still a pretty well-milked franchise. And that’s not necessarily something to be frowned upon, as these games have all been of very high quality (except maybe ODST?), from what I’ve read. MS found something people really want with Halo, and it’s good of them to capitalize on that without halfassing it.

          • Yep. Plus I think people have different definitions of milking. I think some people consider milking to be when devs make a game yearly. While that could be, I think milking is when they add nothing in terms of gameplay and stuff. Tak the first Halo and compare it with Reach. You can obviously tell it’s way different; Forge, theater, multiplayer, everything. Plus from Halo 3 to Reach they made a completely new engine. I don’t know, I guess I’m just rantin now. There’s my 2 cents

          • Hold it right there all of you! ODST was not a “milker” title to a Halo history fan can tell you! And while its not the same thread of game as the traditional Halo titles it has a place in the franchise that no other Halo game COULD fill. The human element. MC (who is and always will be icon) is MR Super soldier and no matter where he is he always kicks butt. But when you drop into ODST shoes you better pick your battles! Especially legendary! Shields never WERE such a comfort zone before! Also I don’t see how you all see MC as a “faceless” hero. Maybe having read the begining storys (not the comics though, to bland) a fanboy has more feel for this, but the one thing that 343i can do is let us see how the MC has reacted to who and what he is, because the books don’t leave him lots of time for introspection, even though he is clearly not just your average grunt!

            Best way to sum this all up, just cause you bunch don’t understand ODST (its written like a 1960′s mystery novel) don’t bash it. Its true to its roots, unlike some “reimagined” titles like Mechassault over Mechwarrior (shudder) ODST and Halo Wars are there own place, and the thing that gamers need to realize is that there are more than just one shade of good game out there. Personally, ODST for me was the best one untill Reach, beacause it showed the sacrifice and the loss that lead up to the big win. It made the win more meaningful. Just play from Reach through to Halo 3 and when Arby runs the sword through The Prophet of Truths back you might have the rather suprising and unbidden thought “that was for Six and all the rest you bastard!” like I did!

          • Hey I wasn’t bashing ODST. I liked it, especially because of firefight. I thought it was pretty cool to play as someone other than Chief.

          • I just see ODST getting dragged through the “not Halo” mud all the time and no one seems to ever stand up and say something. It gets me irritable because it was such a intelligent idea to flavor the series with something really unique, and if all it gets it trashed than game devs won’t do things like that very often. I see you were not bashing it, so I should have clarified my comment was more aimed at Androol, and anyone else reading and trying the old smile and nod thing. Allow for some diversity and imagination in a game universe, you don’t know how it might positivly affect the storyline.

          • Alex:
            I wasn’t really bashing it, either. I said “maybe ODST?” because that’s pretty much the only Halo game about which I’ve ever heard more than a couple negative opinions. Never played it (or any Halo game) myself, nor do I really even know anything about it; I’ve just seen a bunch of people talk trash about it in comment threads (and so have you, I gather).

            It’s nice to know that it wasn’t actually a bad game. I guess that means the negative reception is more based on it being the first MC-less game, then?

          • Androol, ODST departed in 2 major ways from Halo proper. It had no MC (like you figured) and it did not visit tons of exotic galactic locations, in fact the whole game takes places in and around one city. But the way the story plays out, a film-noir style mystery told chapter by chapter both from the gumshoe prespective and the subjects the detective/trooper is trying to find, is very entertaining. You really get into the Rookies (the main character) head, wondering what has happened to his team, and at the same time you know and want to be able to tell him his lost team is actually Ok. And the cast of voice actors made all the difference. Nathan Fillion makes a good ODST Sergent with complicated storylines, if you ever watch Castle or Firefly you already have a good idea as to what he can do.

            It was a great game, but if ever you pick it up please play Halo CE and Halo 2 up to the Arbiter level FIRST, otherwise it won’t make any difference. And actually Reach is the right place to start. Reach, CE and Halo 2, then ODST.

          • Cool. Thanks for the guide, Alex. You do make ODST sound pretty interesting, and I love me some Nathan Fillion.

    • haha very witty. the first time you did it, it was great.. the second one was overkill though. keep it subtle mate :)

  9. I’ve always appreciated the weight and feel to the controls in Halo. It’s something that was implemented really well. I thouroughly enjoy Halo as a series, I absolutely loved Reach. I hope 343 can do it justice, but MS does need more exclusives I feel. But with console popularity and multi-plat games selling better with their console I can see that. But as far as Halo 4 goes I hope it’s a success and carries on the legacy.

  10. Prefer Gears of War and Modern Warfare over Galo!

    • Gears of War is good; but COD? seriously?

  11. Do like Master Chief though!

  12. I dont know this is like the seventh halo game i have a felling This game isn’t going to be that great

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