At its E3 press conference Monday, Microsoft-owned 343 Industries announced two new “Halo” titles, including a next-generation makeover compilation of the first four games and a brand-new game to be released in late 2015.
“Halo: The Master Chief Collection” will include the first four “Halo” games optimised for the Xbox One console and remastered at 1080p HD and 60 frames per second.
The single-disc anthology will release on November 11 for $US59.99, and it will feature a new prologue before the first game, “Halo: Combat Evolved,” and a new epilogue after “Halo 4.”
The collection will also feature all of the multiplayer content from all four games, including all previously released download-only maps.
The November release of “The Master Chief Collection” will coincide with the premiere of a live-action “Halo” television series, called “Halo: Nightfall,” which will be executive produced by Ridley Scott. (Another live-action “Halo” series, this one by executive produced by Steven Spielberg, is still in the works.)
According to 343 Industries General Manager Bonnie Ross, the first “Halo” TV series, “Nightfall,” will lead into the next official “Halo” game in 2015, officially titled “Halo 5: Guardians.”
“Halo 5: Guardians” will be the second “Halo” title helmed by 343 Industries, which took over the franchise after the original developer Bungie split with Microsoft in 2007. 343 Industries’ first full-length “Halo” game, “Halo 4,” received positive reviews from critics after its release in November 2012.
“When we first started 343, we made sure we actually paved and deepened the foundation of the universe,” Ross said. “I feel that’s critical to have success and people loving the universe over the next 10 to 20 years.
“This is about a universe worthy of devotion, of being able to tell hundreds of stories. At 343 we put a ton of emphasis on the fiction, the foundation.”
The “Halo” games, to this point, have generated more than 50 million units in sales.
Microsoft will certainly welcome more “Halo” content — both the games and the TV series — as its fledgling Xbox One console aims to compete with Sony’s better-selling PlayStation 4.