[UPDATE] First Footage of Halo Online Surfaces
A modding team created a tool that would allow Halo Online to be playable anywhere, but Microsoft issued a copyright notice to have the mod pulled.
[UPDATE #2]: We've added the first video of working online multiplayer.
Previously we reported on the team of Halo Online modders that have been hard at work poking and prodding the upcoming free-to-play game's code. The team seems to have made some significant progress since then and posted a six-minute video of the game in action.
Everything from custom loadouts to vehicles seem to be working. The video suggests that many of these features will be locked behind microtransactions, as the loadout slots shows lock symbols and a purchase button. Otherwise though, it looks just like Halo.
So far, it seems that the modders kept to their word: despite copyright takedown notices from Microsoft, they're still working.
[UPDATE]: We've added a statement from Microsoft below.
A Microsoft spokesperson told GameSpot that while they were pleased to see enthusiasm from the fan base, Halo Online was built with the Russian market in mind.
"While we’re thrilled there's so much interest outside of Russia, the beta of Halo Online is a PC experience tailored specifically for the tastes, tech and infrastructure of the Russian market and furthermore, is still in an early state. As such, we want to ensure a quality experience for our beta participants within Russia which could be impacted through unauthorized use."
Our original story:
Last month, we reported on the upcoming free-to-play, Russia-only shooter, Halo Online. Since that reveal, modders have leaked some of the game's files and attempted to create a tool that would allow players from all over the world to play the game. Understandably, Microsoft wasn't too happy with the modding project, codenamed "El Dorito," and filed a copyright takedown notice against Github, the host for the mod.
Speaking with pirate-friendly site, TorrentFreak, one of the people working on El Dorito said that the team has enough backups to keep going and highlighted some of their long-term goals with the mod.
The modder, known by the alias "Woovie," said, "We have made redundant [code] backups on private and public servers. This is to ensure we will always have one working copy. These are being synchronized so that data is always the same. Further [takedowns] may happen potentially, it's not really known at the moment. Our backups will always exist though, and we will continue until we're happy."
Woovie added that the El Dorito team is driven by a deep love for the Halo series, and frustrated by the fact that Halo Online is currently restricted to Russia.
"As someone involved in game development, I'm sympathetic with some developers when it comes to copyright issues. This is different though, in my opinion," he said.
In the same interview, fellow modder Neoshadow42 said that this would be a different situation if they were taking a game that people had to pay for and making it free. Instead, they're just allowing an already free game to be played by anyone. "We're working to improve people's experience, bring it to those who wouldn’t have been able to play it anyway. I'd see that as a noble cause."
The El Dorito team said that gamers have been begging for a Halo 3 release on PC for years. Since Halo Online is being built with a modified version of Halo 3's engine, the team said they found their chance. "El Dorito aims to deliver exactly what everyone wants. The closest thing to a Halo 3 experience as possible, but on PC. If we can manage that, I'll be more than happy."
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