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Jul
26
2016

Xbox One S bundles with Madden NFL 17 or Halo Collection arriving late August in 500GB or 1TB variaties

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Play over 100 console exclusives on the highly anticipated, newly designed Xbox One S, featuring 4K Ultra HD Blu-ray, 4K video streaming and High Dynamic Range for games and video. With all the biggest blockbusters this year, plus Xbox 360 backward compatibility titles, and the most advanced multiplayer network, Xbox One S is the ultimate games and entertainment system – starting at $299.

…continue reading » Xbox One S bundles with Madden NFL 17 or Halo Collection arriving late August in 500GB or 1TB variaties

Feb
17
2016
Oct
03
2015
Sep
01
2015
Aug
04
2015

Here’s the Halo 5: Guardians Edition A40+MixAmp M80 for Xbox One

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ASTRO Gaming, creators of premium video gaming equipment, today announced the upcoming release of a special Halo 5: Guardians Edition A40+MixAmp™ M80 gaming headset.  Officially licensed for the Xbox One, the new ASTRO A40+MixAmp M80 Halo 5: Guardians Edition features a custom dark chrome matte finish with metallic blue accents and a subtle yet striking Halo-inspired graphical treatment.  With theASTRO A40+MixAmp M80 Halo 5: Guardians Edition, gamers can now enjoy audiophile-grade sound and an unprecedented level of control over their gaming audio environment as they experience the biggest Halo game yet in Halo 5: Guardians, available beginning October 27, 2015 exclusively for Xbox One.

…continue reading » Here’s the Halo 5: Guardians Edition A40+MixAmp M80 for Xbox One

Oct
16
2014

Halo: Spartan Strike lands on Windows 8 Devices and Steam in December

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Microsoft Studios and 343 Industries, in conjunction with Vanguard Games, is excited to announce “Halo: Spartan Strike” – an all-new “Halo” top-down shooter – coming to Windows 8 devices and Steam on December 12, 2014 as a digital download for $5.99 ERP  …continue reading » Halo: Spartan Strike lands on Windows 8 Devices and Steam in December

Aug
19
2013

Halo 4 Champions Bundle Available August 20th

The fourth major expansion in the “Halo 4” Infinity Multiplayer experience, the Champions Bundle, developed in collaboration with Certain Affinity, includes three DLC packs in total (Steel Skin Pack, Bullseye Pack, and Infinity Armor Pack) plus bonus content.

 

 

The Champions Bundle is available on Xbox Live for 800 MS Points and consists of the following DLC Packs, with additional bonus content outlined in the corresponding section below:

 

  • Bullseye Pack: Two new multiplayer maps, a sports-themed Spartan armor, and a new competitive gravball game type called Ricochet
  • Infinity Armor Pack: Set your Spartan up with impressive and legendary new armor
  • Steel Skin Pack: Bring an elaborate steampunk style to your UNSC, Covenant, and Forerunner weapons

 

Each individual DLC Pack is available outside of the Champions Bundle as a standalone offer. The Bullseye Pack is available for 480 MS Points3, and the Infinity Armor Pack and Steel Skin Pack are available for 240 MS Points3 each. The Champions Bundle includes must-have bonus content available through purchase of the bundle.

 

A full description of each new pack and the Champions Bundle content is below:

 

Bullseye Pack

Dive headfirst into the exciting Bullseye Pack, which includes the brand new Ricochet game type and two new maps, Pitfall and Vertigo. In addition, Bullseye offers an entirely new armor set based on the Ricochet game type. 

  • NEW MAP – Pitfall: As a remake of “Halo 3”’s ‘The Pit’ – Pitfall has new features based on pro and community feedback for increased pace and flow. The map is small and mostly open with strategically placed cover points. Our new game type Ricochet is also a perfect complement to this map. Play to experience a new take on an old favorite. Pitfall will incite fond memories, and new excitement.
  • NEW Map – Vertigo: Vertigo is a small map that any Slayer or Extraction fan will love. But don’t let Vertigo fool you. Opposing Spartans aren’t the only thing you have to worry about in this small experimental tension conductor facility. This map is hiding a secret: Vertigo brings you the first dynamic event in a Halo multiplayer map in a very long time; the map hides a trigger point, that when shot at – depletes the shields of all Spartans within range.
  • NEW Game Type – Ricochet: For nearly a century, gravball competitions have held sway over most competitive sports across the breadth of human-occupied space. Historically, UNSC drill instructors have utilized a variant called Ricochet, where fast-paced combat simulations occur in synch with the classic, frenetic scoring competition. Spartan-IVs aboard Infinity have adopted this format recently in the ship’s impressive combat decks, incorporating a number of adjustments within the War Games simulations in order to effectively hone their skills. Protect your team’s goal and score in the other team’s goal. Running the ball into the goal earns you 50 points, while throwing the ball into the goal gets you 20 points. First team to 150 points wins. 

 

Steel Skin Pack

With the Steel Skin Pack, stylize your favorite loadouts with the most elaborate and impressive “Halo 4” weapon skins to date. Inspired by classic steampunk aesthetics, the Steel Skin Pack covers the gamut with ten UNSC, Covenant, and Forerunner weapons, grafting vivid, dynamic plating and textures across your weapon-of-choice.

 

Infinity Armor Pack

Stand out on the battlefield: from legendary Mjolnir and Special Forces armor to the ancient Forerunner mail of an era long passed, now is the time to update your “Halo 4” Spartan. With the Infinity Armor Pack, you get access to the vintage Mark V armor of “Halo: Combat Evolved,” the rugged armor worn by the battle-hardened ODSTs, and a hybrid Forerunner armor system used by their civilization’s Prefects more than 100,000 years ago.

 

 

“Halo 4” Champions Bundle:

Enhance your War Games experience with 3 all-new content packs for one special price4, plus bonus content for those who purchase the “Halo 4” Champions Bundle. The bonus content gives you an excellent selection of upgrades that simply cannot be passed up, including an armor mod: the Resistor Tactical Package, new weapon skins, new armor skins, and new Spartan stances for your player card. And, with the “Halo 4” Champions Bundle, you get the 3 content packs as well: the Infinity Armor Pack sets your Spartan up with legendary new armor, the Steel Skin Pack brings elaborate steampunk style to your UNSC, Covenant, and Forerunner weapons, and the Bullseye Pack delivers 2 new maps, a sports-themed Spartan armor, and 2 week early-access5 to an insane new competitive gravball game type called “Ricochet”. A description of the armor mod included in the Champions Bundle bonus content is below:  

  • Resistor Tactical Package: The Resistor Package is a specialized armor mod that allows Spartans to maintain their full mobility and dexterity while taking incoming fire.
Nov
09
2011

Help Celebrate 10-Years of Halo at Microsoft Stores for the Halo Anniversary Launch

At the stroke of midnight next Tuesday, Nov. 15, one of the most eagerly awaited remakes in history – “Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary” – will take the world by storm like the iconic classic did a decade ago. As millions of fans worldwide prepare to celebrate the 10th anniversary of a video game that reshaped the industry, Microsoft Stores across the U.S. are gearing up for a launch event ten years in the making.

…continue reading » Help Celebrate 10-Years of Halo at Microsoft Stores for the Halo Anniversary Launch

Oct
18
2011

Halo Anniversary details: Kinect, Multiplayer Maps, and Waypoint

With less than a month until the highly anticipated release of “Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary” on Nov. 15, Microsoft’s “Halo” studio, 343 Industries unleashed a volley of exciting news at New York Comic-Con this weekend, including the return of the fan-favorite multiplayer map Hang ‘Em High in “Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary,” details about the game’s innovative Kinect integration, and the next evolution of Halo Waypoint, the ultimate online destination for “Halo” fans.

 Hang ‘Em High Makes Its Triumphant Return in “Halo: Anniversary”

 Announced at New York Comic-Con, High Noon, the stunning remake of the classic “Halo: Combat Evolved” map Hang ‘Em High, is set to make its glorious return in “Halo: Anniversary.” High Noon (also known as Hang ‘Em High in classic mode) combines a decade of poignant nostalgia with the adrenaline-pumping thrill of classic “Halo” multiplayer combat, to round out the cavalcade of seven fan-favorite multiplayer maps launching with “Halo: Anniversary.”

HIGH NOON – High Noon returns players to the familiar canyons and catwalks of Hang ‘Em High, the “Halo: Combat Evolved” classic multiplayer map, now reimagined for “Halo: Anniversary” with unprecedented detail. The vast generator complexes, which power this enormous slipspace portal, allow it to connect with an unknown number of locations across the galaxy. High Noon is a densely-packed arena of platforms, corridors and cover, best suited for team-based combat in both Slayer and Objective gametypes (4 – 12 players).

Uncover Rich Details about the “Halo” Universe through the Power of Kinect

 Alongside the reveal of High Noon, 343 Industries also unveiled details about Kinect functionality in “Halo: Anniversary,” including voice commands and a new feature that lets players gather canonical  information about its universe as they explore “Halo” and relive the iconic adventure:

Analyze Mode – Analyze Mode is a Kinect-exclusive feature that allows players to “scan” items of interest within the “Halo: Anniversary” campaign to populate the Library, an interactive encyclopedia of “Halo” lore.  Once in Analyze mode, new articles of interest can be added to the Library by focusing the reticule on them and saying “Scan.”

 The Library – The Library is an expansive index that provides detailed information on items of interest players have scanned through “Analyze Mode,” such as vehicles, characters, enemies and weapons. Through the use of gesture controls, players can explore the entire Library at any time and then return to the campaign to continue unlocking more secrets within the “Halo” universe.

 Voice Commands – Harness the technology of Kinect for Xbox 360 to reload your weapon, throw grenades, switch seamlessly between Classic and Remastered graphics and more, using only your voice.

ATLAS Companion Experience and Custom Challenges Usher in the Next Evolution of Halo Waypoint

Halo Waypoint has been the ultimate destination for “Halo” fans on Xbox LIVE since 2009, and this weekend, 343 Industries offered a sneak peak at what’s in store for the groundbreaking online service this holiday:

New Halo Waypoint Interface – A revamped design and user interface lets players navigate Halo Waypoint and access the content they want more easily than ever before, whether they’re online, on their Xbox 360 or on their Windows Phone.

Halo Waypoint ATLAS – Available on Windows Phones this holiday, Halo Waypoint ATLAS (Advanced TacticaL Assault System) is a new mobile experience that offers players a detailed, top-down view of any “Halo: Anniversary” or “Halo: Reach” map in real-time, letting them monitor teammates’  movements and positions as they play. This innovative app encourages strategic gameplay and offers a fun companion experience to any multiplayer match.

 Custom Challenges – Building upon the “Halo” series’ genre-defining user-creation toolset, 343 Industries is empowering the community even further by introducing Custom Challenges in “Halo: Anniversary” and “Halo: Reach.” For the first time, players will be able to issue custom Challenges and create friendly competitions with Xbox friends, unlocking infinite creative possibilities to invent and test their “Halo” skills against one another.

For example, players can create a Challenge to get a specific number of headshots (say 50) in Multiplayer, within 24 hours.  They can then try the challenge themselves, or invite their friends to give it a shot to see who can get the most headshots.  Challenges can be created for Campaign, Matchmaking Firefight, Multiplayer and even Custom modes.

Players will also be able to earn “Halo: Reach” Credits by completing Custom Challenges, infusing new creative potential into the game’s deep player progression system, and leveraging all the great new multiplayer maps from “Halo: Anniversary”!

For a sneak peek at Halo Waypoint ATLAS and Kinect functionality in “Halo: Anniversary,” new footage of the iconic level, “The Pillar of Autumn,” and screenshots of High Noon, be sure to check out the new behind-the-scenes videos and screenshot galleries from 343 Industries available today on Halo Waypoint and HaloWaypoint.com.

For more information about “Halo: Anniversary” and the “Halo” franchise, please visit HaloWaypoint.com and follow the 343 team on Facebook at http://www.facebook.com/HaloWaypoint.

With a bounty of new features including cooperative play over Xbox LIVE, a bundle of some of the most beloved multiplayer maps in “Halo” history reimagined, new challenges and new story to uncover, “Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary” is a must-have experience, coming exclusively to Xbox 360 on Nov. 15, 2011.

Aug
26
2011

FanExpo Canada: Hands-on with Assassin’s Creed Revelations, Halo CE Anniversary and more


Yesterday I got a chance to check out FanExpo Canada held in Downtown Toronto. FanExpo basically the Canadian Comic Con, but obviously at a much smaller scale. Among the video game publishers that had a presence there were Microsoft, Sony, Ubisoft and WB Games.

Ubisoft

At the Ubisoft booth, I was able to get into a 6-player game of deathmatch in Assassin’s Creed Revelations. The Multiplayer mode in Revelations made Brotherhood feel like a proof-of-concept to me, much like how the Single-player campaign of Assassin’s Creed 2 made it’s predecessor feel like a proof-of-concept. The map that we were playing on looked great; the visual fidelity in Revelation’s multiplayer mode easily matched what we’ve seen in the Single-player of previous AC games. The layout of the map was tighter quarters than the standard maps in Brotherhood, and the pulley system was incorporate into the map to encourage players to use the verticality of the map without being easily spotted. Also, there seemed to be a lot less instances of clones moving around on the same screen. But the biggest change came in the omission of the proximity cone from Brotherhood. Instead, to find your target you must get up close to a character which looks like them at which point you’ll see a circle fill up around their head. After that, you’ll be given a prompt to assassinate if it turns out the person you are tailing is your target. However, you’re still free to Assassinate opponents before the circle fills up in case you have already smoked out who your target is. I did have a little bit of trouble playing the game as it was running on PS3s using the PS3 shoulder button layout, whereas I’m used to the usage of triggers on the 360 side of things. That being said, from what I saw, the multiplayer looks like its going to be a big step up from Brotherhood.

Xbox

Next up was my time at the Xbox booth. Microsoft didn’t have a huge presence at FanExpo, likely because they already had their own events in the city last week. But they did end up giving hands on time to both the Gears 3 and Halo CE Anniversary multiplayer modes. Halo CE’s multiplayer quite frankly was the Halo Reach multiplayer (with abilities and all) with a map based off of Beaver Creek from Halo 2 called Battle Canyon. The map was slightly different than previous incarnations as it included a tunnel in one of the rock formations on the side of the level. The pistol was also noticeably more powerful than in the standard Reach multiplayer mode (much like it was in the original version of Halo CE). I was regularly getting headshotted by enemies across the map who were using Pistols.

I only took a brief glance at Gears 3 as I had already been in the Multiplayer beta earlier this year, but what I saw was visually stunning. Epic clearly hasn’t been resting on their laurels as the visual quality of the game seemed to have jumped since the last time I saw it during the multiplayer beta.

WB Games

Batman: Arkham City was another visually stunning game that I got a chance to see a demo of at the WB Games booth. I had to check twice to see if they were running the PC version of the game as the image quality of the game was noticeably better than most games that are available on the current generation of console hardware. The controller was a wired 360 controller, and the inputs going into the TV looked like an Xbox 360 video cable, so it seems as though it was the 360 version. The demo consisted of various short scenarios which were cut from various parts of the full game. At one point, Batman was in a room with a stained glass window. As the player broke his way through the glass, my jaw dropped as the large open world environment came into view. Even the tutorial part of the demo (showing how to take down an opponent from above) was very cinematic and did very little to take you out of the action. This demo of the game easily made Arkham City shoot up to be one of my most anticipated titles to come out this fall.

One final thing I’d like to note about FanExpo. This was the convention where TV technology killed video games. In the Assassin’s Creed Revelations demo, they had given us 3D glasses to wear as most of the stations were running in 3D mode. However, Revelations doesn’t natively support 3D mode and this was an artificial 3D mode produced by the TV. And it did absolutely nothing to improve the image. My demo of Halo CE was marred by the fact that the default control settings were set to a sensitivity of “1” (which I changed after about a minute into a 5 minute demo of the game) which was especially bad since I’m used to a sensitivity of “9”, and the TV was a 120hz TV running in some sort of awful Motion smoothing mode which doubles the framerate of the content you are seeing, but also introduces incredible lag. And even the Arkham City demo station’s monitors had a little too much noise reduction going on. Publishers, please get your stuff together when showing games at these events. Not setting up your TVs properly is only going to turn off people from the games.