Halo 4 nearing completion

343 Industries entering "super crunch time," says campaign playable from start to finish, Spartan Ops missions and multiplayer maps now being polished and bug-tested.

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More than four months separates today from Halo 4's November launch date, but it appears Microsoft is nearing completion on the new shooter. According to the latest Halo Bulletin report, developer 343 Industries is entering "super crunch time" on the project, now focusing on bug-smashing and polish.

A first look at Halo 4's Longbow multiplayer map.
A first look at Halo 4's Longbow multiplayer map.

According to Microsoft, the Halo 4 campaign is playable from start to finish, with some levels approaching "near-complete" status, while others remain in need of polish and bug eradication. Additionally, Microsoft said the first wave of Spartan Ops mode missions find themselves in a similar state, as is the case with the 10 multiplayer maps that will ship with Halo 4.

Not only is Halo 4 nearing completion, but the new live-action series Forward Unto Dawn is wrapping up. Microsoft said the cast and crew for the series recently finished their last day of shooting in Vancouver and are now entering the final stage of production. Forward Unto Dawn launches in October, and more information on the series will be shared at Comic-Con 2012 next month, Microsoft said.

Also in this week's Halo Bulletin, Microsoft shared news on Halo 4's newest revealed multiplayer map, Longbow (pictured). The company explained that it has a long history of snow-themed maps, specifically calling out Snowbound and Avalanche from Halo 3, and that this theme will continue with Longbow in Halo 4. This map will showcase one of Halo 4's unannounced game modes and saw a number of revisions before Microsoft decided on its final setup.

Longbow is a mid- to long-range map that supports vehicles like Warthogs, Mongooses, and Ghosts in its current form, and sports a number of close-range combat opportunities around base structures. For more on the map, check out the full, detailed blog post.

Halo 4 is due out on November 6 for the Xbox 360. It is a direct sequel to 2007's Halo 3 and has players taking on the role of supersoldier Master Chief. For more on the project, check out GameSpot's latest preview.

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