GDC 07: Halo 2 Single-Player Hands-On

The middle game in Microsoft's flagship franchise arrives on the PC later this year and we got a test-drive at GDC.

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Even though Halo 2 shipped for the original Xbox in 2004, Microsoft sees plenty of potential in the upcoming PC version to spur its new Games for Windows initiative. Halo 2, after all, was the biggest-selling Xbox game ever made, and it remains incredibly popular on Xbox Live even today. The PC version is being developed by Hired Gun, an internal Microsoft studio working in cooperation with Bungie, and executive producer Jo Clowes was on hand at Microsoft's showcase event at the Game Developers Conference to give us our first hands-on time with the single-player portion of the game.

Considering the sheer popularity of Halo 2, Microsoft and Hired Gun haven't tinkered at all with the gameplay. The single-player and multiplayer content in the PC version are taken directly from the Xbox game, and it will also feature all the various downloadable map packs that were released afterward. The major difference is that it will look a lot nicer on the PC thanks to the vastly improved resolution and some higher-resolution textures. We had a chance to see it for ourselves by playing the Delta Halo level, and the visuals were so sharp that you could read the fine print on the Master Chief's rocket launcher. The gameplay was pure Halo, as we shot, rifle butted, and plasma grenaded the alien horde that faced us.

The control scheme has been tuned and balanced for the mouse and keyboard, though you can also plug in an Xbox 360 controller to your PC, and the two are integrated so seamlessly that you can start playing with the mouse and keyboard and then pick up the gamepad midlevel. Interestingly enough, Clowes told us that the developers have been a bit surprised to see some players use both the mouse and gamepad at the same time, using the analog stick on the gamepad to move and the mouse to aim and shoot.

The system requirements for Halo 2 are a bit high considering the Xbox version ran on 2001-era hardware, though you've got to factor in the higher graphical resolutions and OS overhead in the PC version. However, they're fairly modest for a Windows Vista machine. You'll need a 2GHz CPU, 1GB of RAM, and a decent DirectX 9 video card. The game will not use DirectX 10, so you won't need the latest video card to play it. However, you will most definitely need Windows Vista, because Halo 2 will only run on Windows Vista PCs. According to Clowes, that's because the game takes advantage of many Vista-only features, such as rapid install. When you first insert the Halo 2 disc into your PC, you won't have to install the game like you traditionally would a PC game. Instead, like a console game, Halo 2 will begin to load up and you can play immediately while it installs in the background. The PC version will also have support for Games for Windows Live, the PC version of the popular Xbox Live online service that allows for matchmaking, friend tracking, gamerscore, and much more.

If you're currently an Xbox Live gold member, then you needn't worry about signing up or paying for a separate service, because we're told that the Xbox Live membership is universal with your Games for Windows Live membership. And if you don't have Xbox Live, signing up for Games for Windows Live will also set up your Xbox Live account. The two are basically one and the same. There will be two levels of Games for Windows Live, silver and gold. Silver is the free, limited service, while gold is the full subscription service. Clowes said that you will not need to be a gold member to play Halo 2 multiplayer, and that players can set up open dedicated servers that anyone can play on, just like dedicated servers for other PC shooters. However, Halo 2 for the PC will be the first game to let players set up dedicated Live servers.

One advantage of this system is that players can use the official map editor that ships with Halo 2 to easily create and share maps. The map editor is the major--and pretty much only--new feature to appear in the PC version, and it's based on the level editor that Bungie used to create the game. Using the map editor, you can create custom levels and even unique gameplay modes. Clowes showed us a huge soccer stadium that she built, with a giant metal ball that served as a "flag." The goal for each team is to "score" by moving the ball into the opposing goal, but the trick is that the ball is so large it can only be moved by being nudged by vehicles. Toss in weapons such as the rocket launcher, and you essentially have combat soccer. And the cool feature is that once you're done, players can automatically download your map when they connect to the server.

The PC version of Halo 2 will be the first Halo game to ship with achievement points, which are used to build up your gamer score by performing certain feats. That may not sound like much to PC gamers, but trust us when we say that building up achievement points can be addictive. Alas, Clowes wouldn't get into specifics regarding Halo 2's achievements, as they're usually one of the last things to get finalized. As its, Halo 2 is on track for release sometime before the halfway point of the year.

Discussion

295 comments
arnaob
arnaob

Its very frustrating that it only runs in windows vista.Microsoft you can't do that !

BloodMist
BloodMist

Requiring Vista+service that does everything i've been able to do for years already, for free(Windows Games Live)+gamer points i don't give a crap about=boooooring.

mdcw9
mdcw9

i agree with you too dogsound, but leepower is right... Many pc gamers have never seen a move like this before. This applies to people whom have lived with xp and have not touched 98, as the exact same thing happened between 2000 and xp. A move has never happened this quickly before, usually, games will be able to play on older operating systems for about a year, and then the newer games will be taken onto the newer OS. It is a rare occasion to see a new game only limited to an operating system which has only been out for a matter of months. Sure its been in production for about 6 years but thats really not the point. Hardly any PC gamers have had to worry about not being able to play games due to better operating systems unlike consoles. This a very new move by Microsoft, and of course it is not going be liked.. Other produces like EA, Ubisoft, etc have never attempted this because there is simply no reason to. But that has the attitude what gamers have got used too, and changing to the ways of consoles is not going to be liked as i said before. Personally im not fussed as i don't like Halo, but im very agree over a few things. The fact that they are not including directx 10 (a huge feature to vista) and improving upon halo 2 is a very bad move. If they want people to buy vista in order to play a game, they should include new things that will attract people, not just produce a copy which has been around for 2 years.

LeePowers
LeePowers

i agree with ya mr doghounds, but remeber pc gamers dont have too deal with with console ppls problems such as buying a 360 for gears because with normal pc games you can use them on multi platform OS's. but since they are realisin HALO2 which is a very very old but great game back in its day, there will be people who want to play it but dont have the money to buy a OS or a comp to handle the very demandin vista. surely there must be a part where ya think holdin back halo2 to not go on xp is a bit stupid and shootin themselevs in the foot. It wont have revalotionay gameplay, old graphics, a phsyic system which will be laughable... they should have pushed halo3 for vista instead of halo2 or even GoW (gears of war)

dogsounds
dogsounds

You know, reading these comments really does amaze me some times. It's scary that some of you don't even have the ability to write. Anyway, I don't want to veer off topic... Some of you are reacting like Vista has just popped out of nowhere. It hasn't. It has been in the works for years. Microsoft have made no bones about this. Now, for a little Economics 101. Vista is Microsoft's new OS. They are a business, and the entire point of a business is to make money. End of. And, like every other business out there, attention of resources will shift from the old product to the new one. Show me a company that invests as much money in old products as their new ones, and I will happily eat my own head. Microsoft are doing the same as any other company - Sony included. So to say "OMG Microsoft are TEH EVIL for forcing us to buy Vista"...well, no, not really. They are simply doing like every other successful business out there and maximising the potential of the resources they have by attaching Halo 2 to the Vista platform. Ultimately, Halo2 will ship with Games for Windows - Live capability. This is not being built into XP because - guess what? XP is the old product. No point building Live into XP when they have spent untold millions and many years developing Vista. And as you all point out, Halo 2 is an old game. What point is there in releasing two versions - Vista and non-Vista - in a game that is already out of date? That's more money spent on development. May as well juice it up for the new system and leave it at that. It makes more business sense. Really, some of you folks seem to think that software and hardware companies exist solely to give you what you want, and that they have no financial restrictions upon them. The basic economic model applies to big corporations with untold billions in reserve just as much as the owners of your little local mom and pop store, who have to earn enough to get by. It's about profit, get that into your heads. Here's another thing to think about. Some of you moan that you have to buy Vista to play this game, and that is not fair. Well, no you don't. No one is forcing you to go out and buy either Vista or this game. You can buy an old Xbox fro £50, why not buy a second hand one of those? Or, if you can afford it, get a 360? Or you can excercise the ultimate consumer choice and not buy either. See, you have CHOICES, if your only motivation is to play Halo 2. Many years ago I bought a Playstation 2 because I wanted to play Half Life, and my PC was not up to the job. Did I complain because Half Life was not available on the old Playstation? No. Sony made sure the game was PS2 only, because at that point they were promoting their new product, the PS2, and were not pushing hard to sell PS1's. Does this sound familiar? It should, because it is the same scenario as XP/Vista. They did exactly the same as Microsoft, and any other right-minded business - focussed on the new product. Do you compain because Gears of War requires you to buy a 360 and doesn't work on the old Xbox? No, because it is a 360 game. Do you complain because Resistance: Fall of Man doesn't run on the PS2 and needs you to buy a PS3? No, because it is a PS3 game. So why is this any different? With Halo 2 they are simply taking an exisiting franchise and adapting it to the new product. Sure, Gears and Resistance could have been released for the older consoles, but what is the point? They were designed to add to the new product and enhance its market presence. So it is pretty canny, in a way, to take what is arguably Microsoft's biggest and best -known franchise and attach it to the new product. Any other company with such a profitable brand would do exactly the same. You have to shift focus yourselves for a minute and remember that the whole animus for Vista is not just Halo 2. Whether it was being released for Vista or not, the marketing machine woud still be shifted in favour of Vista. But as both are Microsoft products, it kinda makes sense to leverage as much potential from both, don't you think? Now I am no Microsoft loyalist - I am not loyal to ANY company, apart from perhaps the one that pays may wages. And I am not arguing Microsoft's corner here, far from it. I am trying to address the people here that seem to have no concept of marketing or business, and think that these companies are charitable organisations. Get over yourselves. One thing that I tire of on these news story posts, and forum, is the whole Microsoft vs. Sony arguments. Who cares? They are both businesses, are motivated by profit, and that is that. They have different products, both of which have good and bad points. I have a 360 because I wanted to play certain games, not because of the brand name on the box itself. If a game came out that got my juices flowing, I would buy a PS3. I don't give a damn who makes tha damn console, I just want to play games. And it really gravels my ass that EVERY SINGLE topic ends up in a Sony/Microsoft battle. Jeez, grow up, for the love of God.

draak3000
draak3000

Man you just proved you don't know much about computers when you said it cost thousands of dollars each year. Seriously when your knowledge is that low its not even worth debating with you.

Evanrocknuma
Evanrocknuma

I think eventually computer game companies will merge with the consoles because at some point the consoles will be so cought up to computers ( they kind of are already) that ppl won't want to keep upgrading when it would make a lot more since to pay one fee of 400 dollars or more instead of thousands each year. The only road block is that computer gamers ( man I wish I could afford it) dont want to give up their mouse and keyboard because it just feels more right to them. I do like the mouse and keyboard but I would choose a console over a computer upgrade any day. Don't look forward to it now because any convincing stories will take forever to go through every game company out there for computers and then it would be atleast at the next generation of consoles after our precious 360 and wii (sorry ps3 but not this time why...why!)

draak3000
draak3000

You know for the price of vista you could instead just buy an original xbox and play halo 2 on there...

galduke
galduke

Why, oh why is there so much bickering between console and PC gamers? PC is a neutral territory with content from both Sony and Microsoft, hell I even saw some Pokemon software half a decade back (not a screen saver...I think)! It just doesn't make any sense...

rokkuman09
rokkuman09

Why do they require Windows Vista? Gosh Microsoft is just evil sometimes, but then again I'm not buying Vista just to play this. I could run this at 100+ fps with my current setup why does Microsoft have to be nazis sometimes.. It's not like this game is even that good anymore. The PC platform has many FPS games that are much, much better than any Halo game. Like Half Life 2 for instance. What is Microsoft thinking?!

chris_36824
chris_36824

This is really stupid that they are forcing you to have Windows Vista. If they can make a massive multiplayer game fit on Windows XP than there is no excuse as to why they cannot make Halo 2 fit on it. I was very exited for this launch because Halo:Combat Evolved for the PC rocks and I still play it all the time but I do not know that I can afford the new Windows Vista and then have to dish out another fifty dollars for Halo 2. They should try harder to make this game for Windows XP.

lordvulcan
lordvulcan

the halo games have always been one run-through games. Updating old games is not worth the effiort. anyone who wnated to play it did so on the xbox. when it is released it will be comparible to all of the other games that have ever been releasedfor the Pc and my opinion is that you can get at least a hundred more hours out of Ut2004. it will run on XP and costs less than £5 now. give me Unreal tournamnet 3 or crysis i would buy vista but i won't waste teh cash on an old game that takes a very short amount of time to complete. every game worth its chipc gives you an editor nowadays. UK prediction - PS3 only console with systems on shelves on launch day -due to lack of interest and an additional £150 on tiop of the US price.

lordvulcan
lordvulcan

the halo games have always been one run-through games. Updating old games is not worth the effiort. anyone who wnated to play it did so on the xbox. when it is released it will be comparible to all of the other games that have ever been releasedfor the Pc and my opinion is that you can get at least a hundred more hours out of Ut2004. it will run on XP and costs less than £5 now. give me Unreal tournamnet 3 or crysis i would buy vista but i won't waste teh cash on an old game that takes a very short amount of time to complete. every game worth its chipc gives you an editor nowadays. UK prediction - PS£ only console with systems on shelves on launch day -due to lack of interest and an additional £150 on tiop of the US price.

Valiant1
Valiant1

seems like Microsoft is the Emperor Bush Likeness in commanding the Vista software be incorporated into mainstream of PC gaming. To Bad ..it will be a loss in $$$ and interst with these requirements and after reading all the other comments..well it's just to bad everone is is just finding anothe avenue to fullfill the 'HALO" need. As for me well I've lived with Halo 's original and it was great while it lasted, all good things must come to an end. Cee YA!

dancingdudesean
dancingdudesean

I don't have a gig of ram or windows vista, no Master Chief for me. Ah well, I don't need his crappy pistol or stupid ending.

Sokol4ever
Sokol4ever

Playing first Halo of PC was a good experience. It was a good shooter. It wasn't really properly polished for PC release however.(The game required quite a beast to play it without dropping fps, for a game that didn't look near as good as PC standards were and are.) However, with good enough system game was fun to play. After dusting of my old x-box I rented Halo 2 which was fun and enjoyable experience as well. After barely two days, it came to an end. I was disappointed that the length was so short, leaving me at cliffhanger by the end. Halo was definitely fun to play, but was extremely short. It does not warrant 50+ dollars mark. For a hardcoded FPS player, this would take less then a day to finish. I don't mind Halo 2 for PC one bit, I believe good shooters are always welcome. Vista being a requirement is a very bad move in my opinion for PC gamers. I see it only as a Operating System sell out bribe. If Halo 2 doesn't bring anything new to the game, and still remains as short of a game play as it was, I hardly believe any smart PC gamer will be looking into purchasing it until it's either available for XP, or after year or two when Vista becames more affordable and reliable for PC gaming with Halo 2 price range drop.

mdcw9
mdcw9

I cant believe it. From the moment i read: "The game will not use direct x 10" i was annoyed. Its going to be strictly for vista is it... so why on earth are they not including the most powerful and incredible direct x engine out? Wow, so the only benefit is Quick Install.... and the graphics is going to be just as good as counter strike source. I buy every new game thats worth the money, but this is a disappointment, a sad attempt to get gamers to buy vista. STALKER is out in 3 days, and will have the most powerful game engine to date, but 7 days after that, Crysis will be top dog and halo 2 will be but a mere shadow of physics magnificence. Apparently "Halo 2 for the PC will be the first game to let players set up dedicated servers." Thats wrong, one word, "Steam" Why o why, is gamespot making halo 2, an ancient game, sound better then it is, its rubbish, ok, the story-lines good, but so? There are many games which are far better then this...

TruB
TruB

a reason not to get vista.

Wezker619
Wezker619

cjkreiger omg the ps3 is not going to be at the tops of its peak. BTW who the hell surfs the net on a console. Not to mention the Sony lies to you everyday saying whatever to give you the hype. A lot of stuff Ps2 and the HDD able to save music on it and play LIE Supposedly internet gaming better on the PS3 LIE. The ps3 will never be at the top of the peak. PC>X360>Wii>Ps3

snipercomplete
snipercomplete

cjkreiger-go look at stalker, and crysis as js said, and then look at projectoffset on projectoffset.com. now go home to your pure evil. sony.

cjkrieger
cjkrieger

In a few years time the PS3 is going to be at its peak and its entry level games at release arent to shabby either. Theres alot going for the PS3 in terms of internet surfing, Blu-ray player & decent audio for a console but most important for me is KB/Mouse ingame/OP-system. PS3's new Home idea looks quite fun too and if I wanna new game I'll just download it...saves me a car trip. So yeah the PS3 will be outdated but within that time you're gonna spend an arm and a leg in the upgrade department far far more than what I've paid out. Its been a long long time since I seen somthing in the PC gaming market thats blown me away eveythings just the same but better eye candy and at the moment the eye candy is good so I welcome the change....im just glad im outta this pay to play scenario. Dont get me wrong the PC will always be the daddy and leads the way but at a heavey cost. At the end of the day tho Im just a gamer and as long as its got a KB/Mouse for me to shoot you in the face im a happy bunny.

pot-noodle
pot-noodle

cjkrieger - you would much rather go out and pay for a console that in a few years, will be out of date. and one that costs far more than that DX10 card? Herbs84 - Microsoft has had vista in the works for over 4 years, it was project longhorn, and now it is upon us, and Microsoft are dropping all support for the old Windows XP OS, in favour of Vista, it seems to come as some surprise to you? Sorry, but they are in business, just like Sony, Sony no longer make the PS1, support for PS2 has started to drop in-favour of the Ps3, its business, everyone is in for the money, Sony / MS / Nintendo, they are all doing the same. If you don't have Vista, get it, its as simple as that. MS haven't kept it a secret that Vista was getting released. or the fact they had a new OS in the works. if you are unprepared, why complain at the company that just wants to support there new product. As for the game not working on Xp. Its a Microsoft game, they are trying to support and show off there new OS. Just like games for the new consoles do not work with the older systems. Sony do not make games for the PS3 that work on the PS2, they want you to upgrade. weather its a New OS or a new console. I cant wait for Halo 2, its been a long time coming. it should have hit the PC along time ago. but then, i understand that they needed it to sell XBOX's. I'm a PC gamer, upgrading comes with the territory. If upgrading is not your thing. stick to consoles.

cjkrieger
cjkrieger

God I cant wait for PS3 to bring out ingame KB/Mouse. Instead of upgrading my PC with a £300-£400 DX10 card I went and bought the PS3 and im actually happy with the damn thing apart from software houses ignoring the ingame mouse option Sony have given them....ARGH!. Vista & Mircosoft can kiss my *** this time tho, they are demanding upgrade if your a gamer where as in the past it could be done when our pockets could afford it. Give em hell SONY!.

bashcash007
bashcash007

I agree with Herbs84, Gamespot is biased to Microsoft, not just in this article, but in many others, and also on On The Spot. Oh well, there is always ign.com.

Herbs84
Herbs84

Jesus, this'll be the first time I've ever commented on one of these threads but gamespot is FORCING a long time only-reader into opening his mouth and actually post something. I can NOT believe what I am reading here. Now, I own neither a Playstation 3 or Xbox360 but I read around plenty on the consoles on this site and others. I am actually considering purchasing one but have yet to make up my mind. This article is verging on being outright lying propaganda on Microsoft's behalf by gamespot. Microsoft in this case are GUILTY of the very things gamespot insists on slaying sony for regularly. But because this website is obviously in Bill Gate's backpocket the story is spun and sugar-coated so badly a politican would be proud. I can't believe you all can't see this. I can and I'm completely neutral on the whole console-war debate. Believe me, I am no fan-boy, I just hate seeing the general public being lyed to in this round-a-bout fashion by those who are supposed to be giving an un-bias journalistic opinion.

jaggy_12
jaggy_12

AWESOME!! I HAVE VISTA AND I CAN'T WAIT TO PLAY HALO 2 ON IT!!!

elrod92
elrod92

Dear scottyh, you clearly have some issues worth looking into. Or, you are the perfect example of the audience this marketing campaign aims to.

LIMEBOB
LIMEBOB

i cant wait... all i need now is Vista :(

stefan90
stefan90

Ohhhh nooo whay, whay VISTA only!!!????!?!?!

scottyh777
scottyh777

Iv'e been playing halo pc and halo2 on the 360 since it came out a few years ago.I upgraded to Vista just for Halo2 PC.Thats right I spent $$$$$ just to play Halo2 PC for Vista and im glad I did.This is going to be great.Im sorry that many of you can't afford a the VISTA upgrade or a $50 PC game.NOT!!! Have fun playing your tired and old XP games.LOL

iseeundead
iseeundead

Halo? Great game. Vista only? Well...looks like somebody has selling problems....

Evilfixxor
Evilfixxor

This game is as entertaining as playing a box of rocks.

MorkkiTH
MorkkiTH

I'm waiting Halo 3. If I want to play Halo 2 I play it on my 360. No need for vista.

trinitytx
trinitytx

please.. low poly is still low poly.. no matter what shaders you throw at it. Any Halo fans will already have an xbox and the two games. PC owners could be getting sold a white elephant here. However lesser things have sold well. But as it stands that they've picked an old classic to showcase new technology. I could be proven very, very wrong ;)

nazraq
nazraq

I like the idea of earning achievements on my pc. I don't like the idea of playing through Halo 2 again. The single player was so weak, and I'm done with it online. But like I said, the live for windows aspect makes me want this game. So, I would pay $20 for it. No more than that. Too bad Microsoft will probrably charge $50. I'll wait for the bargain bin. And I'm still waiting for a DX 10 game, or a patch.

Barneys_Soul1
Barneys_Soul1

Haha, Microsoft are really trying to plunder us PC gamers....while I for one have a computer good enough for Vista, XP has PLENTY of games left on it, and still being released, and why would I want DX10 if the first DX10 game isn't even out yet? Microsoft shoulden't have done this - 99% of users still have XP, and if Microsoft wanted us to upgrade to Vista then they should have AT LEAST PUT DX10 INTO A GAME THAT'S 3 YEARS OLD!!!!!

GolgoThirteen
GolgoThirteen

Another case of Micro$quish bottlenecking you into buying their new OS if you wanna play this game. I'll stick to S.T.A.L.K.E.R.

natedogr
natedogr

Yawn. Halo 3 is what I care about.

KingovGames
KingovGames

It's very disappointing to see Gamespot not saying anything about it even being suspect that Halo 2 has to work with Vista. Just taking part in the deception.

earlthecannibal
earlthecannibal

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

earlthecannibal
earlthecannibal

[This message was deleted at the request of the original poster]

e_boulanger
e_boulanger

A Vista game that is not DirectX 10? Why? DirectX 10 is the only reason for a game to be a Vista exclusive. Obviously, Microsoft thinks PC user will buy Vista just to play Halo 2. They will find that we are more intelligent that their marketing department (meaning that we are not that stupid).

DarkRecruit
DarkRecruit

"The game will not use DirectX 10, so you won't need the latest video card to play it." Then it says..... " However, you will most definitely need Windows Vista, because Halo 2 will only run on Windows Vista PCs." Shows how greedy Micro**** is.

RushNcrush
RushNcrush

The whole vista upgrade seams to be a bad decision. first vista doesn't have enough of a base to justify releasing halo 2 on it. second there are huge issues with DRM management that vista is controversial for, PC gamers aren't crazy about halo in general, considering it weak compared to some of the stuff thats native on the PC, I don't know the statistics but gamers aren't really jumping into that whole vista thing, and halo 2 isn't going to convert them. It's a good game but it's more of a console thing than PC. Now if Microsoft is trying to expand it's Halo franchise they should have released this game back in 2004 it's too dated now compared to whats out, Half Life 2 episodes for example. All stuff coming out is way better graphically and game play wise than halo 2 can ever be. So making halo 2 a vista exclusive just puts more and more road blocks for the PC gaming community to appreciate the game. I think Microsoft is shooting themselves in the foot with this.

unreal6666
unreal6666

The problem with all of this is that a lot of people are not ready to move to vista yet. They would need major upgrades and some computers simply cannot run vista because some of the drivers are simply non existent. Plus a lot of people KNOW that while vista seems cool it is buggy and needs to mature a bit more. Companies need time to adjust their devices drivers to make vista work with different computers parts they sell. Vista is also a bigger OS to run so it needs more ram and hardrive resources, So for those who are just making it barely with enough ram on xp and room to spare on ram and on your hard disk you are out of luck. You would need a new PC. To move to Vista is a big decision because you are looking basically at having no choice to get a new rig if your computer is not that old cause other wise you won't have enough resources to do what you need to do and play on your pc. Security and other issues wise a lot of people will wait until they see at least a service pack to upgrade to vista. That way at least people know that some of the major bugs have been ironed out. While Halo 2 for vista only seems intelligent on the tehcnical side of things it reeks of stupidity on the money making side. Yes People will want Halo 2 but because of the VISTA exclusive only Halo 2 will lose sales on the initial run. Does Bungie care? Apparently not...they made their money with the Xbox version of halo 2 and to them it is just a port to PC and a few extra dollars to boot. On the other side of the coin If bungie would have been a brand new company, they would have made the game xp compatible cause otherwise they know it would have been dangerous to do so and an unwise money making decision at this time. I ranted a lot on the bungie board about this situation (vista Exclusive) and all i got was bungie dishing out BS as to why Halo 2 needs vista. Bungie does not care if the sales of Halo 2 are not that fantastic because halo 3 is coming out within a short time after halo2 for pc. This show to People that The halo 2 situation and the situation surrounding it is based on a money making decision and nothing else. It is not based to please fans and frankly why is that? If you are a business your goal is to attract more customers by offering a product they like. Bungie is dropping the ball on this and it is a really poor executive decision at this time made by Bungie's top brass who are obviously in league with Microsoft to get people to buy Vista even tough they claim the opposite. Dwon the road I could clearly understand that Halo 3 (wich is coming out on the 360) might need vista to run but not halo 2 since the game was based on pre vista programming. But what Bungie is forgetting is that even if they want to please Microsoft and try to make them sell vista fans are really vindictive and will remember this. Also Halo 3 is supposed to be the last chapter of the halo saga and sincerely unless they come up with some incredible new selling game concept i can see bungie vanishing into nothingness because of bad business decisions on their part. I have yet to see anyone even gamespot or any other gaming magazine defend the point of view of gamers who are upset about being "forced" to immediately upgrade to vista to play halo 2. Kind of sad. People will just skip that game and get another one that plays on XP...after all there is tons of competition out there. And if you have a 360 why you can get the game cheap now and still pay the core story. People will move to Vista it is a given fact but not for just one game! I hope that companies that are publishing games remember this and do not try this stunt for a a while at least... MMMMM...probably not...they don't wanna hara kiri themselves like bungie seems to want to do.... Bottom line is : Does Bungie wanna sell Halo 2 or do they wanna sell Windows Vista to the crowd? For my part i always tought Bungie was a game making company not an OS making company. R.I.P Bungie 19??-2009 ( after halo fad is gone) ...... .

Unstoppable_1
Unstoppable_1

Hah good riddance Vista. About time Micro$oft started listening to the masses. Why force a Vista upgrade for Halo 2? Would of cut profit margins by half if not more. Good if not great news. Woohoo look at that blubber fly!

dontbehatin45
dontbehatin45

jordan evidently u cant read, its a dx9 game, gg on actually reading the article