343 Giving Free Game & More As 'Master Chief Collection' Apology

Master Chief Collection ODST Gift

Although it took some time for 343 Industries to respond to the numerous problems with Halo: The Master Chief Collection, when they eventually did the developer made a straightforward promise. Not only would the team work diligently to get the game's online experience in a playable and enjoyable state, but also once that was done 343 vowed to “make it right” with some form of goodwill gesture.

But while Halo: The Master Chief Collection is still having its struggles, 343 has today detailed what their goodwill gesture will be and it's pretty substantial. Anyone that played The Master Chief Collection between launch and December 19 will get a 1-month Xbox Live Gold credit, a special name plate and avatar item, and a digital copy of Halo 3: ODST.

This isn't just any old copy of Halo 3: ODST either, but an HD remake that 343 Industries is working on as we speak. They hope to have the revamped game out sometime in spring of next year, at which point Master Chief Collection owners will be able to play it for free.

The one caveat to unlocking the free goodies is that MCC owners must have logged in sometime between now and launch to acknowledge their ownership. We're sure that there will be some way to prove you bought the Xbox One collection if problems arise, but those who did log in should be fine.

Apparently, 343 was already working on an HD update of Halo 3: ODST when this entire Master Chief Collection situation arose. And so, rather than release the game either as paid DLC for MCC or as a standalone product, they are offering it as a goodwill gesture.

Here are the four goodwill gesture items:

  • Halo 3: ODST Campaign: The original Xbox 360 game campaign will be upgraded to run at 1080p and 60 FPS. Development on this "just started," but 343 says we can expect to see it in Spring 2015. It has no plans to include the co-op Firefight mode. The campaign will be delivered through a free download token, and you'll launch it through MCC.
  • One month of Xbox Live Gold: This will be delivered as early as mid-January 2015. 343 will either apply one month of Gold directly to your account or send a redeemable token through the Xbox One message center.
  • Exclusive In-Game Nameplate and Avatar: These will be delivered before 2015 in an upcoming content update. As a thank you to early adopters, they will not be available anywhere else.
  • Remastered Halo 2 "Relic" Map: The re-imagined version of the Halo 2 map Relic will be available in Spring 2015 as part of a free update for all players in Halo 2 Anniversary.

As far as whether non Master Chief Collection owners might be able to pick up ODST some time in the future, 343 Industries has some plans but nothing to announce yet. So, if you didn't get Master Chief Collection in time there's still likely a chance to pick up a copy of Halo 3: ODST in HD. You also have no idea the matchmaking problems players have had to deal with over the past month.

Halo Master Chief Collection Patch Causes Bugs

Those who do eventually pick up Halo: The Master Chief Collection won't be without their goodies, though, as 343 also confirmed the release of a seventh Halo 2: Anniversary map for free. They plan to give the Halo 2 map Relic the same revamp treatment they gave to the six H2A maps included with the Master Chief Collection. Like with ODST HD, the Relic remake should be released sometime in spring 2015.

Despite some serious bumps at launch, it appears that Halo: Master Chief Collection is finally headed towards stability. It was a shame to see such a comprehensive package ship with so many problems, but in a strange way those problems have helped The Master Chief Collection turn into an even bigger deal, boasting every Halo game except for Reach.

How do you feel about 343's free offerings as an apology? How has your experience with the Halo: The Master Chief Collection been recently?


Source: 343 Industries

Follow Anthony on Twitter @ANTaormina

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