The rumors are true! For the first time ever – all four games, one disc, all on one console.
During their press conference at E3, Microsoft and developer 343 Studios officially announced Halo: The Master Chief Collection to be released on November 11, celebrating the 10 year anniversary of Halo 2. It will also include access to the Halo 5 Guardians multiplayer beta.
Each game will run on its own original engine. What does that mean for you? Everything, for the most part, will feel and play exactly as it did the first time around. The games will also be upscaled to run at 1080p resolution and will all run at 60FPS. The games will also be running on dedicated servers.
Every chapter throughout all four campaigns will be unlocked out of the box giving players access to their favorite levels to play on under any difficulty they so choose. 343 has also said there will be campaign playlists available, with more to come in the future.
Also included will be the digital series Halo: Nightfall, an episodic collaboration between Ridley Scott and Xbox Studios that will lay the narrative groundwork for next year’s Halo 5: Guardians. Note that this is not the Halo series in pre-production by Steven Spielberg, which was recently rumored to be headed to Showtime.
Much was revealed during Microsoft’s press conference so let’s break it down by each game.
Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary
Though 343 insisted that this will simply not be a port of Saber Interactive’s 2011 version, they were a little fuzzy on the campaign details.
What was the biggest disappointment from Saber Interactive’s remake? The Multiplayer. Many players thought they would be getting a completely redone Halo CE, but instead the multiplayer ran on Halo: Reach’s engine. How has that changed this time around? Halo: CE’s multiplayer will be playable online in it’s original glory. This is huge for old school Halo: CE fans as this will be the first time that online multiplayer has been available, excluding the PC port of course.
Halo 2 Anniversary
Halo 2, what many consider to be the best of the series, is back and it will be getting the full anniversary makeover. To bring us this remake, 343 teamed up with Saber Interactive, who developed the anniversary overhaul, and Certain Affinity, who developed the multiplayer remake. Just like the 2011 remake of Halo: CE, Halo 2 Anniversary will include the ability to switch between the current and original 2004 graphics at the push of a button.
As a bonus, 343 has hidden elements from Halo 5 throughout the game which includes new and hidden terminals, extended cutscenes, and of course all new skulls that allow players to manipulate the way the game is played.
The extended and never before seen CGI prologue and epilogue are being handled by animation studio Blur.
Online matchmaking will include all original 23 maps (including the original DLC) playable on Halo 2’s original engine while six fan favorite maps will also be reimagined and rebuilt from the ground up on Halo 5’s engine.
Halo 3 and Halo 4
There’s no doubt the bread and butter of this announcement was the remake of Halo 2 and the Halo 5: Guardians Beta invitation, so information about Halo 3 and Halo 4 was pretty scarce. All we know for sure is the games, like their counterparts, will run on their original engines at 1080p resolution and 60 FPS.
Overall, there will be over 100 multiplayer maps to choose from. 343 also announced that when voting for a map between matches, players will get the opportunity to vote from a selection spanning each of the four games.
Halo: The Master Chief Collection will hit retail and digital on November 11th for $60.
Take a look below for a side-by-side comparison of Halo 2 Classic and Halo 2 Remastered
Set 1 of 2
Set 2 of 2