Wingnut unscrewing new 360 Halo franchise

<i>Lord of the Rings</i> director Peter Jackson announces his film studio is launching a new Interactive division--and a game set in the Halo universe will be his first project.

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Today at the X06 conference, Microsoft announced that it is developing Halo Wars for the Xbox 360. The announcement confirms months of rumors that the best-selling first-person shooter franchise would enter into the real-time strategy realm--a return of sorts, since the game was originally conceived as an RTS based on the Myth engine.

Peter Jackson talks Halo in Barcelona.

However, Halo Wars and Halo 3 aren't the only games in development to feature the far-future conflict between humanity and the multiracial religious-fanatic horde known as the Covenant. During today's X06 briefing, Microsoft announced that an entire new Halo series is in development--under the supervision of a once-obscure horror-movie director who has become a household name.

To rapturous applause in Barcelona, Peter Moore--corporate vice president of Microsoft's entertainment and devices division--announced that Microsoft is partnering with Lord of the Rings director Peter Jackson on an all-new "Halo series" for the Xbox 360. Details were slim, but Moore did say that the games would make for "amazing interactive entertainment experiences on Xbox 360 and Xbox Live," meaning, presumably, that the games would have an online component.

As Moore spoke, Jackson himself took the stage to illuminate the crowd about the franchise, which will apparently not consist of the average Halo game. "It's a form of entertainment that's not a game and it's not a film. It's a filmic game experience," Jackson told an enthusiastic crowd. "I think we're on a threshold of a new way to tell stories. With that in mind, we discussed a way to do it, and with that in mind, we decided that the first title should be something that will allow us to not have to devise a whole new world but to allow us to tell the story."

The new Halo games will be codeveloped by Bungie Studios and Wingnut Interactive, an all-new subdivision of Jackson's film production company, Wingnut Films. Not so coincidentally, Wingnut is currently making a big-budget big-screen adaptation of Halo, which will be directed by South African filmmaker Neill Blomkamp. Jackson is executive-producing the project, which is having its special-effects work done at the director's Weta Digital postproduction house. Weta Digital is also doing effects work for Avatar, the forthcoming sci-fi epic from James Cameron (Titanic, Terminator), which is also being made into a massively multiplayer online role-playing game.

"Given the fact we are making a little movie called Halo at the moment, and we're in partnership with the nice guys at Bungie, we decided the Halo universe is the best place for us to start," said Jackson. "It's not Halo 3 or four. It's not the film. But it is based on that amazing world."

No release date was given for the unnamed Halo game, though it will presumably be released after Halo 3 hits next year. It will also be the first game in a "long-term partnership" between Microsoft Game Studios and Wingnut Interactive to create "all-new and original interactive entertainment series." The deal will also cover all-new Xbox 360 games created by Jackson and his life partner Fran Walsh and writing collaborator Philippa Boyens.

"I wouldn't even call these games in my mind, because I'm not a game designer," Jackson said. "What I'm really interested in is taking ideas that could become films, but maybe they won't be films ... They'll be steered into this technology that the Microsoft Game Studios people have developed."

Discussion

229 comments
RantNavv17
RantNavv17

Never knew about the secret halo game, but in a way im glad they did stop it, too many halo games can ruin it, 5 is good enough, 3 which is about story line and 2 which fills in the gaps :D. i don't want it to be like GTA, yer the first few was good but now they just boring.

ffviiifreak
ffviiifreak

everything this cat touches turns gold so it should be good

TheSargeGuy
TheSargeGuy

i hate how good these people are at keeping secrets about the halo franchise its driving me insane

Shishio817
Shishio817

I wish Mr. Jackson would reveal some more about this "game".

Evanrocknuma
Evanrocknuma

I am more excited for halo 3 but I already know the basis on how it will be played... however I am more interested on how Halo wars will turn out. The peter jackson part scares me though. He wants to make the game PLAY like a MOVIE, wait did he just combine those two words... oh god. If you guys havn't noticed he kind of screwed up the story line of king kong and goes a little overboard on digital animation which most ppl would think is good but no If you go to high above the bar it ****s up the story line and can make the game pretty much unplayable. For instance I watched my friends dad play Dreamfall which was pretty much the same concept to add a movie feel to a game... yea good and great but I was up there for like an hour and only saw cutscenes after cutscene. Too much movie for my taste. Hopefully since he is the lord of the rings film creator he will make this game play a bit more like battle for middle earth 2 but better because I am still debating whether I want to pay 50 bucks for an RTS that can get boring after a while and the camera can not zoom in far enough... but I cant really complain either because it is probably one of the best games out of its kind. Halo wars go for more of that feel but better get it than you will have a better game that doesnt have cutscenes as long as it took me to freaking write this. XD

games_master123
games_master123

wow this should be quite gd seein how as microsofe studios and wingnut are sum of the biggest retailers out there

GeigerdolylWodd
GeigerdolylWodd

Yeah this'll be interesting. Iwonderifitwillbe firstperson like King Kongoramixture like King Kong

DARK3NDGAM3R
DARK3NDGAM3R

I cant wait to see what Jackson has in store for the Halo franchise.

kasalisk
kasalisk

This is actually an idea I thought up a while back, not surprized my favorite director, the guy who got me into filmmaking myself is the first to get into this. Long live Peter Jackson!

_Sam_
_Sam_

I'm sure he'll do a good job

goose_uk
goose_uk

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

patmacfad
patmacfad

That's a lot of Halo to take in this week.

gagan21
gagan21

Halo is mindblowing ,awesome ,superb,gr8, the best of the best,i love halo,its my favourite of all times

gforce85
gforce85

Sweet. Good for Pete. I'm a little dissuaded by the Microsoft-specific allegience, but Jackson is innovative and adventerous, so there's likely to be something interesting comin up.

God_father_87
God_father_87

Peter Jackson will not ruin the the industry wih Bad games he is a gamer himself meaning he is one of us and he is setting it up in my Home town I wish him all the best. also i like King Kong alot.

The1stFishBone
The1stFishBone

[This message was deleted at the request of a moderator or administrator]

krispydigital
krispydigital

.... reminds me of final fantasy movies, crisis core, dirge of cerebres, etc.... sigh....they're milking gamers for all they're worth... And Halo is gettng boring.... Halo1 was good cuz it was new and crap...but halo2 was more or less the same thing... zomfg halo3? same thing with shinier armor?! they should start another franchise

Flakor
Flakor

Its an experiment really, to see if they can really pull off this new Interactive story telling of theirs.

JLCrogue
JLCrogue

The only thing I can think of when they talk about how it's not a game or film are the interactive cutscenes in Resident Evil 4.

cocojack
cocojack

awarriorofgamin I wouldn't say killing the series man I belive they are unlocking yet more of the story cause ppl love halo belive it or not and they'll eat up anthing Bungie or any other studios working with bungie have in the works and I don't think the halo franchise finished cause I mean not many ppl went out and picked up a copy of the Books that were released some time ago and there probably gona revolve the story around those books or maybe not thats Bungie and any other studios that will be co-working with Bungie to decide anyway Bottomline is Halo is awsome there not gona kill it cause they wouldn't dare and they wouldn't be able to for the fans sake and because MS would lose big $$$$$$$$$$$ so i'm looking foward to a whole lot of new HALO games lol hey they might come out with a HALO turn based title lol thats a joke I can't picture Masterchief pulling off some big attack like they do in the Final Fantasy franchise. SoUlReApErMaN

cocojack
cocojack

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

cocojack
cocojack

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

ElementalFire
ElementalFire

"awarriorofgamin now is where they will kill the series" Haha, this is exactly what I was thinking. The moment things get out of Bungie's hands...

X-7
X-7

I don't like that "I would'nt even call these games in my mind.." statement. What will they do? Halo with RE4 elements?

eternalxboxfan
eternalxboxfan

The 360 just keeps getting me more and more excited. All these amazing games and new features and functionalities are what truly makes this console great, I think t will indeed beat out the PS3 and the Wii.

BigEAsy527
BigEAsy527

o stop whining, solidfear, your just mad, the halo has become better then metal gear solid. the second was not horrible, its was flawed, but still enjoyable. There are going to make a lot of dough, thanks to more Halo projects.

SolidFear
SolidFear

More Halo crap. The first game was decent, second was horrible. Microsoft is taking advantage of you fanboys. More crap Halo stuff on the way.... Pathetic.

GuardianofRice
GuardianofRice

I just hope Halo doesn't become like Final Fantasy, where now there's too many to count. It's not that FF is bad or anything, but the games have more uniqueness if there are less of them. Still, I hope this project fires up to be a success.

Xa31nov1s
Xa31nov1s

The more Halo the happier I am :)

rokkuman09
rokkuman09

They better not start just becoming mediocre...this happens to alot of series they make sooo many games so fast that they just don't focuse on quality as much as they do quanity...but I mean if these new Halo games are good heck thats awesome

Romanticide
Romanticide

yay milk halo for all it's worth... ¬_¬ do anything but comeup with your own ideas.

xbox_gamer1
xbox_gamer1

Keep on bringing the new Halos Microsoft!!!!!!

Gunitsoldier91
Gunitsoldier91

halo wars looks awesome, this new project has potential too, cant wait to see where they exactly go with it

starcutter20000
starcutter20000

we're all still waiting for the "Citizen Kane" of gaming the one thing that will break the interactive medium from the "mere meaningless entertainment" it has been labeled as.----------------------------------------------------------------------- L1qu1dSword "i got tired of waiting for starcraft 2. " And I got tired of waiting for Duke Nukem forever

Dinghy_Dog
Dinghy_Dog

Halo the movie... i just don't see how this is really going to happen. Granted, I love the game but overall, the game is just your typical shooter with thumb-break cinematics. With a game like Zelda, you can't sum it up in one little nitch, but with Halo, it's fight the flood and save the earth. There's going to be a lot of Hollywood thrown into this... a lot of it. And that's never a good thing, thank you director of Super Mario Bros!

arandaboy
arandaboy

Peter should be working on something more up his alley, like Zelda.

gabwa007
gabwa007

"It's a form of entertainment that's not a game and it's not a film. It's a filmic game experience," oh no, that doesn't sound good : / . Halo is good as a game.

L1qu1dSword
L1qu1dSword

looks like fun. i got tired of waiting for starcraft 2.

lovermanxxx
lovermanxxx

they got the right people onboard but did anyone else think his speech sounded a bit like "erm, OK, you have all this money and I have a great idea how to spend it... it's, erm, so fantastic that i can't even describe it properly. erm, just give me all your money Mr Microsoft and you will have this wonderful thingy-ma-jigg and I will be on my way.... good? are you kidding it will be IMMERSIVE! and really cool.... can i have my money now... how long til its made? erm, good question, let's just say that were working on it now... ish."

exocel
exocel

from braindead to lord of the rings jacksons allways put his all in his work so hey at least its not another tired WWII shooter or something, sounds good.

jcloverboy
jcloverboy

be interesting to see what they will come up with

Oni
Oni

"It's the most groundbreaking, innovative ... something something you've ever seen. This technology is so amazing you will lose sleep. Immersive? Pfft. you don't know the meaning of that word till you see what is in store from this new game. Dude, I made LOTR x3, I know wtf I'm talking about!" - OMG, THAT RULEZ! MS does it again. That game is groundbreaking. Hope it comes out for PS3 and Wii!! Gosh, am I an idiot!

eggsiboss
eggsiboss

OMG! HALO WARS ! HALO IS AWESOME AND SO IS AGE OF EMPIRES, SO BRING IT ON!!! YEE HA! DOES ANYONE KNOW WHEN HALO 3 IS OUT, IS IT THAT THEY ARE GONNA BRING IT WHEN PS3 HITS EUROPE OR WHAT????

casinater
casinater

I think Halo Wars is awesome. I hope it comes out for PC though cuz i dont have an 360.