With less than 5 weeks to go until Microsoft’s E3 2014 press conference, it won’t be long until we get our much-longed-for Halo news. In anticipation of this, we’ve put together a selection of our wishlists for features, changes, improvements and more in Halo: Xbox One. Given that we’re all very passionate about the future of Halo, it’s quite a long read – so I have included a summary at the bottom if you just want the barebones of it. Either way, enjoy!
1. A fantastic campaign, and more story content.
Halo 4 delivered in ways I couldn’t anticipate with it’s campaign. My only gripe would be the length, but that could just be me speaking from a perspective of wanting as much story content as possible. Other than that, it was amazing. The depth of Halo lore it went into was superb, and I’d love for that to continue. I would also like to see a continuation of Spartan Ops, but better executed. It was laggy in Halo 4, and that drove people away. Provide a more engaging experience, one with more interesting missions, bug-free and you’ll have it sold. Especially if more of the gorgeous cinematic “episodes” are included.
2. Open Beta is necessary.
There were a lot of server issues, bugs and the such in Halo 4. No testing team can possibly replicate the number of unique scenarios that will be created by the thousands of players on launch.
3. Don’t cut out modes with a big fan base.
Provide an amazing campaign, an improved and more engaging Spartan Ops, a bigger and better Firefight mode, multiplayer that incorporates “casual” and “competitive” players, a Custom Games mode with plentiful options, Theater in all modes and a solid Forge mode.
4. Forge Mode Evolved.
Forge needs to have the limits removed. No out-of-bounds areas on maps, BIG Forge maps, no budget. More options and more interesting pieces need to be included, with all the features we have seen in past games returning.
5. Fix the multiplayer.
Infinity is all well and good, but it’s not core Halo. I can see a place in Halo for it, but it’s not the standard. Have a standalone playlist where all Infinity modes can be found, with ordnance and the such enabled. Core/Classic Halo should be the focus and should be the majority of playlists.
– Improved Ranking System
A skill based ranking system should be visible in-game, as well as a separate system that gains you customisation unlocks. Nothing should be tucked away in Waypoint.
This is one of the things I love Halo most for. I want as many armour types available in the next Halo as is humanly and creatively possible. Additionally, I’d like to see more armour colours, and I’d like to have the Reach-esque attachments for armour pieces return. I also came across a really neat idea a while back which I’d love to see: different helmets giving you a differently laid-out HUD in-game. It makes sense, as I can’t see all helmets having the exact same shape HUD, were it real.
1. Halo 5 NEEDS An Open Beta Before Launch – Halo 4 launched with too many imbalances when Microsoft and 343 had over 40 million people at their disposal. Halo 5 should NOT be a repeat of this.
2. Halo 5 NEEDS To Step Its Vehicle Game Up – Halo 4’s vehicles felt sluggish and underpowered, which has never been the case in Halo. Reach didn’t do a lot of things right, but the one thing it did above and beyond most Halo games was have vehicles that were fun and fair to use.
3. Halo 5 NEEDS To Bring Back The Classic Gametypes – This one is inexcusable, HOW do you ship a Halo game without an assault gametype is beyond me. And omitting Invasion, the one gametype that made Halo: Reach awesome, was a bad idea. It didn’t have to be Spartan Vs. Elites, Spartan Vs. Spartan would have been fine, it was the large scaled multi-tiered objective based gameplay that made Invasion the most badass gametype Halo has ever seen.
4. Halo 5 Needs Better Gun Reticles – This might be a minor thing to some but it’s the world to me, I despise most of the gun reticles in Halo 4. To me, the BR and Pistol have the single worst reticle for precision weapons I’ve ever seen in a game. I’d be MUCH more happy with justa dot in the middle of my screen as a point-of-aim.
5. Halo 5 Needs To Look Back At Its Roots – I’m not saying don’t do new things, but at the same time that is kinda what I’m saying; Halo once rewarded players for a skilled performance, now it rewards the person or team who has the luckiest Ordnance roll. Bring back weapons and power ups on map and leave the loadouts to Call of Duty, please.
– Skill Based Ranking System
People want to be able to see it IN-GAME, none of that only on Halo Waypoint stuff. I don’t care if I’m only 30 material, I’ll wear that badge proudly!
1. A beta that was just as fun as the Halo: Reach beta.
2. Forge mode to be “dumbed down” to Halo 3’s Forge, but with rotation snaps and coordinate alignments. Only the best forge maps will be produced and allowed into regular multiplayer.
3. Infection that’s a lot like Halo 3’s Infection.
4. A custom gametype playlist where you’ll join a custom gametype lobby.
5. It needs to be Halo 3.
1. Well, there’s no doubt that Halo 5 desperately needs to include an open beta to polish out any imbalances that it may include.
2. Halo 5 needs a revamped forge mode; players should be allowed to build anywhere on any given map without any “out of bounds” messages popping up restricting the player to designated areas. Remove the limit for how many of a certain object players can place down. Players should also not be restricted to a certain budget. (modders have proven that maps with hundreds of given objects will work just fine, and with a new hardware, 343 shouldn’t have a reason to limit players anymore.)
3. Halo 5 needs a larger array of vehicles. When I realized there wasn’t a single UNSC flying vehicle to choose from, it immediately dumbed down the vehicle gameplay for every match on a large scale map.
4. Halo 4 lacked in vehicle gameplay as players either ignored every opportunity to use a warthog, or completely ditched the idea of getting into any vehicle unless it was a mantis. 343 needs to beef up the vehicles for both the UNSC and Covenant in order for players to find entertainment and satisfaction towards killing their opponents alone, or with their teammates. (Also, the Ghost shouldn’t be allowed to spam the plasma rounds without heating up)
5. Halo 5 needs a better rewards program that showcases and displays players for their work in-game or in forge mode. 343 needs to bring back the idea of an MVP for every game, as well as what Bungie did for Halo 3 where they displayed their six favorite user-created content. As well as including an in-game ranking system to allow players to illustrate their dedication. (maps, photos, film clips)
1. I’m sure many of the other staff and RULers are in agreement with this, and so am I. Halo 5 NEEDS a beta, 343 made a mistake by publishing their first AAA title without a beta and they suffered from it. Halo 4’s launch could have been much better than what it was. I believe if Halo 5 wants to succeed from the get-go an open beta is a must.
2. Some form of constant progression system. Halo Reach had a fairly decent system with the progressive rankings, there was always something to work towards and when you finally hit Inheritor it felt like such an accomplishment. Halo 4’s progression system lacked heavily, it was of no effort to reach SR-130 and when you did, there wasn’t any motive to keep you playing the game except for commendations. Halo 5 needs to have a ranking system that will take an incredible amount of time and effort to hit max rank, but also have the availability of low levelled ranks to keep the ‘not-so-hardcore’ fans continuously interested.
3. Gametypes. There needs to be the full availability right from launch, the includes Race, Assault and classic Infection. Having every possible game type (old and new) available will allow the Custom game / forge community to get to work and constantly produce new and amazing custom maps and game types for the community to enjoy.
4. Do not ‘encourage’ modding. I know there have been some amazing game types to come out of modding, but when you allow the general public to openly hack your game, it just creates a bad image of the game and developer in my opinion.
5. I’d like for old Vehicles and Weapons to be brought back, like the SMG, Hornet, Falcon, Grenade Launcher etc. Some of these that were removed made custom games unique and enjoyable due to original game types that were based off of these weapons and vehicles.
1. Halo 4 needs a clearly defined Matchmaking. Not “Click on Infinity and then War Games” That seems small, but people just want the word matchmaking. General navigation in the Halo 4 UI was sloppy in places it needed to be tight, and expansive in places that were completely unnecessary.
2. Power Weapons & vehicles need to make you feel powerful. Every vehicle in Halo 4 was almost useless because of being able to spawn with sticky grenades; in past Halo’s you knew where Stickies spawned, and knew to stay away or control that area, now you just die within 30 seconds of getting in your vehicle. Power Weapons are far to easy to acquire – remove personal ordnance completely.
3. Meaningful BTB maps. There are quite a few BTB maps in Halo 4, but they either don’t fit their size (Exile comes to mind, too much in too little space) or are generally too small. Some Forged maps fixed this, but these are out of the box needs. Hemorrhage will always come to mind as a great BTB map. I’m not saying I want that map back, but I can’t deny it had the space it needed for vehicles to be strong, while helping footmen with the ducks, hills, and caves to navigate.
4. The ranking & progression system needs to be meaningful. There needs to be an in game, track-able, ranking system. No doubt about it, any game I play now has one, and I continue play it for the fact there is one. Progression needs a total revamp. I hit SR-130 in under a month after Halo 4 launched, while after playing Reach for 3 years never hit Inheritor. (I was close, mind you! Only half left of the last rank before it.) Being SR-130 is meaningless in Halo 4, being Inheritor in Reach meant something, and when a party of 8 Inheritors met up with another party of 8 inheritors in matchmaking, those matches would be insane.
1. An incredible campaign where the Chief has his Spartan abilities pushed to the limit.
2. Solid continuity with minimal retcons or inconsistencies.
3. Large battles in said campaign. (Think Scarabs – Halo 3)
4. Pretty much all the multiplayer suggestions laid out by my compatriots.
5. More advanced Forge mode with a significant boost to creative options to improve variety of what can be made, how it can be made, and where it can be made. Reduce limitations and improve functionality.
1. A return to balance. The standard Halo playlists need to be the traditional gameplay. No goofy loadouts, armor abilities, sprint, ordnance. Those items should be relegated to a separate playlist. They are not balanced and not conducive to consistent gameplay.
2. Expand gametype selection, don’t shrink or replace it. Assault, Invasion, Race, and all the old gametypes need to return along with the new ones. Gametype variety keep the game interesting for longer. Objective playlists can encompass them all. No worries about population per type.
3. A progression system that is long and purely cosmetic. You have a rank based on XP gained that gets you ‘rewards’ in the form of armor and weapon skins. Weapons should not be ‘unlockable’. Everyone should have access to the same equipment from day one. Always. Balance.
4. A skill rank that is visible in game and dynamic. This includes penalties for losses, quitting, and not playing for long periods. This rank should mean something.
5. Custom Emblems.
1. An Open Beta Test
- The lack of one for Halo 4 proves why this is needed and there is no excuse for there not to be one this time around.
2. Segregated Playlists
- Ranked and Social hoppers have worked well in the past for games like Halo 2 and Halo 3, so bring them back. Allow players to choose between highly competitive ranked matches, such as 4v4 Slayer Pro or FFA, and more relaxed social matches like BTB or Action Sack.
- The Ranked playlists is where you would find your “MLG” style gametypes and settings.
- The Social playlists would allow all manner of settings and custom gametypes for a more laid back and relaxed experience. These playlists would be where you would find such things as custom loadouts and AAs, if they were brought back at all. The goal being, to create a place for “casual” gamers to enjoy the Halo experience, but still allow Halo to become the amazing competitive shooter that we all know it can be. That we all want it to be.
3. Classic Weapons, Weapon Sets and Weapons ON Map
- Totally get rid of the ordnance system from Halo 4. Being able to call in a power weapon on the fly, rather than have to fight for it when it spawns, totally ruins map flow AND gameplay. Fights become unbalanced and eventually the entire match can become one-sided, with zero hope for the losing team. Bring back on-map weapon spawns along with power-ups.
- Bring back “weapon sets” and make it a changeable option for every map – such as: Map Default, Classic, UNSC, Covenant, Promethean, Heavies etc.
- Give us back all those lost weapons that we miss so dearly. They would be included in the “Classic” weapons set and contain such things as the Plasma Rifle, Needle Rifle, Mauler, Brute Shot, and Spike Grenades.
4. Heavy Customization Options
- Give us back ALL of the emblems from every single Halo game and then add even more. Also, allow the community to submit their own ideas for emblems much like Bungie has done in the past, but make it far more frequent. We should have HUNDREDS of options to choose from.
- Allow us to place our emblems on different pieces of our armor, not just the left shoulder and allow us to scale them as we see fit.
- More armor options at launch, which includes every armor option from Halo 4.
- The ability to add attachments to your armor much like Reach did with it’s helmets, legs, and forearms.
5. A Compelling and Epic Story
- What kind of Halo fan would I be if I didn’t wish for this? I have no doubt this will happen and I have complete faith in 343i to deliver in this department, but it’s still on my wishlist. For the longest time, Chief has fought for humanity. In Halo 4, we were shown a bit more of his own humanity… especially in the end. This time, he needs to start fighting for not only Cortana, but for himself.
Putting together all of these ideas, and taking the most popular points, the overall wishlist for Halo: Xbox One from the RUL team is as follows:
1. Some form of Open Beta
2. Improved implementation of vehicles, with better balance and a wider variety.
3. Return of classic game types, often considered standard in a Halo game i.e. Assault, classic Infection, Race. Better organisation of playlists and game types in matchmaking menu.
4. An improved Forge mode, with limitations removed, more varied pieces and more creative/functional options.
5. A visible ranking/progression system. There should be a skill based rank, and potentially a standard progression system à la Reach/4 that allows players to unlock customisation pieces and the such.
These are, of course, not our only wishes for the next Halo, but they are definitely among our highest concerns.
What do you think should change for Halo: Xbox One? Is there anything that should stay the same? Have you got a brand new idea you’d like to see added? Let us know in the comments!