Later this year, a shiny new Halo game will be released, and that means astronomical numbers of multiplayer sessions will be engaged in, most likely leading to noticeable drops in school attendance, workplace productivity and the like. And while Halo: Reach represents a substantial jump forward in the single-player department, Bungie is not surprisingly committing themselves to pushing the game’s high-profile multiplayer component into new and exciting directions as well.
Shacknews's (and former G4-er!) Brian Leahy recently spoke with Bungie about the new multiplayer features, and came away with an impressive amount of details, the most eye-catching of which involve the game’s new Arena Playlists. These serve as a way for hardcore players to keep track of their…hardcore-ness, by setting up “month-long seasons” that are divided into divisions. Here’s how it breaks down:
"The divisions are Onyx, Gold, Silver, Bronze, and Steel. It is possible to move up or down within a single season. To qualify for ranking, players will have to play a certain number of games a day to gain a ‘Daily Ranking,’ which will be an average of a player's best games from the day. To get a divisional ranking and compete in a season, players will need a certain number of Daily Rankings.”
Between the Slayer and Team Slayer game mode limitation, and the fact that the game takes into account kill assists and kill to death ratios in addition to kills when determining players' overall score, Arena playlists ensure that elite players have a dynamic and quantifiable indicator of their abilities and standing in the Halo community. It will also ensure that players of all skill levels will be able to participate in the Arena system yet compete against other players at their skill level.
Other big multiplayer improvements include the return of active rosters, queue joining, an improved voting system, and more. If you are a diehard Halo fan, definitely check out the full article for all of the details. And you can find out even more about the Arena system in this Shacknews interview with Bungie developers Luke Timmins and Tyson Green.