Although many PlayStation fans are wondering what Sony has planned for their triple-A fall slate, Xbox fans are well aware of the looming launch of Halo 5: Guardians. It’s true that The Master Chief Collection’s poor matchmaking at launch (and for the following months) may have soured the franchise’s reputation, but there’s no denying Halo 5 will be huge for Xbox One at the end of the year.
Still, with so little known about Halo 5: Guardians, it’s hard to drum up more than a general sense of enthusiasm. We know that the game features a new playable character in John Locke, who was first introduced in the Halo: Nightfall series, but outside of that, details are fairly slim.
Luckily, John Locke’s voice actor Mike Colter, who was also the face of Locke in Nightfall, has shed some light on his character’s role. Granted, it’s not anything too revelatory, but worth highlighting all the same.
In an interview with IGN, Colter explains that Halo 5: Guardians will feature Locke’s transition into a super soldier Spartan. As we know, Locke is in pursuit/searching for Master Chief, but Halo 5 trailers have already shown Locke in full Spartan gear.
"When he goes into Halo 5, you'll see him transition into a Spartan, a super soldier. It's a prominent role within the game. Obviously Master Chief will be involved, Cortana, but Locke will be one of the playable characters in Halo 5. He'll have a prominent role. He's one of the new additions that will be featured throughout the next couple of video games. So you'll see a lot of Commander James Locke."
The more intriguing tidbit from the above quote, though, is that Cortana will return for Halo 5: Guardians. Up until now, the female A.I.’s involvement was a mystery; with many wondering whether or not the events of Halo 4 finished her story. At the same time, there has been rampant fan speculation and hope that Halo 5’s core story would feature Master Chief’s hunt for Cortana after she sacrificed herself to save Chief.
In addition to questions of Cortana's role in Halo 5, we’re also still left wondering how Locke’s existence as a playable character will work out. From Colter’s quotes it sounds as if the character is a major player of the Halo 5 story, which could be a contentious design decision. Halo 2 did it successfully (arguably) by splitting the narrative between Master Chief and the Arbiter, but that was still a bold choice at the time. Locke could offer something unique to players, but Halo 5 developer 343 Industries knows that’s it’s also a big risk deviating from the norm.
Whatever Locke’s role may be, there’s no doubt Halo 5 will be a huge release this fall regardless. Expect big numbers from Microsoft on both the software sales and console sales fronts at the end of 2015, even more so depending on what Sony has to offer.
Are you happy to hear that Cortana will definitely return for Halo 5? Do you like 343’s approach to splitting the narrative?
Halo 5: Guardians releases in fall 2015 for Xbox One.