As much as 343 Industries may not like it, there is, and has always been a large portion of Halo players whose interest begins and ends with the singleplayer campaign. There’s nothing wrong with being more interested in taking on computer-controlled Covenant throughout the fiction the developers have concocted, than facing the looming threat of online griefers.
But for Halo 4, 343 is doing everything they can to change up multiplayer, from adding a brand new co-op, story-based episodic campaign in Spartan Ops, to applying an overarching persistence via the UNSC Infinity. A new video walkthrough provides a closer look at how traditional multiplayer modes will work on the newest revealed map, Abandon.
The new video walkthroughs come courtesy of IGN, who got a chance to see the Abandon multiplayer alongside lead multiplayer level designer Kynan Pearson. A smaller 4v4 map, Abandon, like every multiplayer map within Halo 4, has been created with specific fiction and backstory. Compared to every other multiplayer map we’ve seen in screenshots and gameplay footage, it is clear that 343 has challenged themselves to not use the same aesthetic twice, and the swampy, overgrown style of Abandon is evidence.
Where the previously detailed Longbow map is built around a UNSC magnetic launcher, Abandon centers around a science facility, established to investigate ‘unfortunate circumstances.’ The title is fitting, considering the deteriorating man-made structures overgrown with alien plant life – not helped by the single player navigating the space in the walkthrough video. Whatever happened on Abandon, and whether it has anything to do with The Flood, it sure helps set the mood.
The same basic story of genetic research on live specimens gone bad was implied in the Lockout map, as Halo 2 players will recall, but the extent to which players will be exposed to each of Halo 4‘s map-fiction isn’t yet clear. Will Abandon’s attached meaning stretch beyond implications, or not? What is obvious is that the carnage encouraged by the small, uneven map’s layout will work exceedingly well for straight-up Slayer, or even the new Flood Mode as well.
The map is chock-full of seemingly random boulders and passageways, so those hoping to be effective on day one would be wise to study the walkthrough video at great lengths. And try to decipher exactly what mysterious creatures those are being studied in the facility’s lab…
If you’ve got any theories on their exact nature, or how you think 343 will bring the multiplayer maps into the larger fiction, we’re eager to hear them. The developers have made it clear that they’re already thinking years down the line, so keeping these hints in mind going forward may pay off later.
Are there any notable features or potential concerns you noticed in the walkthrough? Share them in the comments.
Be sure to check out the series of video walkthroughs released in the lead up to launch:
- Ragnarok Multiplayer Map Walkthrough
- Meltdown Multiplayer Map Walkthrough
- Adrift Multiplayer Map Walkthrough
- Complex Multiplayer Map Walkthrough
- Flood Mode Multiplayer Walkthrough
- Forge Mode Walkthrough
Halo 4 will be released on November 6, 2012, exclusively for the Xbox 360.
Follow me on Twitter @andrew_dyce.