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X-Play Fall Specials: Halo 3: ODST Tomorrow Night at 6:30 PM!

There's this little game coming out. I don't know if you guys have heard of it or not, but it's called Halo 3: ODST.

Of course you've heard of it! I was just being silly.

As your best friend and confidant, X-Play is here to cover all the games you care about. This fall, we're taking you to the biggest gaming events and giving you an exclusive, inside look at the most highly anticipated titles hitting store shelves.

We've already taken you to BlizzCon and PAX. Tonight, we're taking you deep inside the world of Halo 3: ODST. Experience the next chapter in the epic series as we present exclusive footage of the campaign and firefight modes, interviews with the Bungie brain trust and more.

So, don't be a square like Mister Chief, be an intergalactic space marine hero like Master Chief and tune in tomorrow as X-Play presents Halo 3: ODST at 6:30 PM ET only here on G4.

P.S. Don't forget to tune in to all the X-Play fall specials including Brutal Legend on October 1st and our coverage of the Tokyo Game Show 2009 October 5th, 6th, and 7th!

Halo 3: ODST PAX 2009 Brian Jarrard Interview

There was always a line to play Halo 3: ODST at the Penny Arcade Expo this year. But I wasn't there to play the latest adventure (and the first one not starring Master Chief) in the Halo universe. Rather, I wanted to speak with Bungie's community manager, Brian Jarrard, about the impending release of ODST, Bungie's presence at PAX 2009, understand the scope and importance of Halo: Reach (much bigger than I thought!), briefly touch on how Halo 4 relates to Halo 3: ODST and discuss reactions Bungie's reactions to the not-quite-a-Halo-movie, District 9.

Here's a little about what Jarrard had to say, looking back at Halo 3: ODST:

"Yeah, it's a first for us, I think we're super happy with the results, it exceeded our internal expectations. We've been pretty candid about having really small initial expectations for the project; we really wanted to be very careful coming out of the gate. We kind of tried to underpromise and we weren't sure where it was going to land, that's why you heard a lot of talk about expansion packs, 3-to-5 hours. Really, that was the initial thought about this game -- it's an expansion. Joe [Staten, creative director] and Paul [Bertone, design director] and the guys' [work] just kinda kept snowballing and the city itself kept growing and growing in size and all these flashback missions started to fall into place and now we're left with something that's pretty much a stand-on-its-own full, robust campaign, not even counting the whole second disc that we've thrown in the box, as well. I think it's a pretty compelling package for our fans."

For much, much more, read my full interview with Jarrard over here.

PAX 2009: Bungie's

Yesterday I had the pleasure of attending the “Prepare to Drop” panel at Penny Arcade Expo. Becuase we're only a few weeks away from the release of Halo 3: ODST, I wasn't really expecting much in terms of huge news or big reveals, just a generally informative and entertaining show put on by the Bungie guys. And that's what we got.

The last time I really saw ODST was back at E3, and though it was generally accepted throughout the office that it was going to be a predictably good game, the excitement level was kept relatively contained. One of the big things they were pushing at the panel, and the notable aspect of ODST that I'm really looking forward to, is the film noir, heavily story-driven approach to this Master Chief-less Halo. Bungie's Joseph Staten, in talking about the approach they're taking with the story, joked that they were going to tell the artists to just make Halo 3 backwards and at night in an effort to save money. During the panel they cycled through various pieces of concept art, which really illuminated how they were thinking about ODST from the start -- incorporating the types of characters and story elements you'd find in in a noir mystery, and the "lone gumshoe detective" archetype was perfect for the ODST trooper we're going to be playing as in a few weeks. Marty O'Donnell, long-serving series composer, also played a couple of clips that were also very heavily noir-inspired, while still retaining the feeling of Halo.

Read More »

On today's episode of X-Play, our intrepid roving Halo reporter Mr Sark traveled to Bungie to talk to Lars Bakken, the senior designer on Halo 3: ODST. What did these two great minds discuss? Plasma grenades? Female Master Chief? Cigar smoking sergeants who suspicious look a lot like Apone from Aliens?

No, not even close. They actually talked about the three new multiplayer maps Citadel, Heretic and Longshore, which make up the second part of the Mythic Map Pack and will be available with Halo 3: ODST.

Watch the video below to get the info on the ooey-gooey multiplayer goodness.


Mr Sark: Halo 3: ODST Multiplayer Maps Preview »


Halo 3: ODST Available For Preorder

As a frequent reader of TheFeed, I'm sure you knew all about Bungie's traveling Halo 3: ODST tour. Jake Gaskill told you all about it, and you can really trust Jake. But if you're anything like me, you haven't had a chance to check it out. Luckily for both of us, Gamers Wish List was on hand to visit the tour and report back.

Nightshade386 traveled to Avondale, AZ, a charming city known for being the birthplace of Craig Mabbitt, vocalist for the band Escape The Fate, to check out the custom-built ODST truck, try out the game and otherwise soak up the early-Halo 3:ODST vibes.  

Check out pictures and the early word on the game here!


GameStop has sanctioned the infamous Rooster Teeth machinima team to create a new Red vs. Blue series based on the upcoming Halo 3: ODST.

In the debut episode below, the ol' gang is back to check out their new ODST competition. Hilarity to ensue. God I love these guys.

Halo 3: ODST Rooster Teeth Red vs. Blue Episode 1 »

Man Kicked Out Of Library For Being Awesome, Playing Halo 3

The man you see in the photo above is awesome. He reportedly walked into a NYC library, took out a wireless router, an Xbox 360, monitor, controller, and headset, then sat down to go to work.

After building his gaming command center, the dude started playing Halo 3, Call of Duty and other games using the New York library's public Wi-Fi, barking orders at his team-mates over the headset as he did. Killjoy library officials reportedly shut down his one-man LAN party in like two minutes. 

My question: If the dude can't afford an internet connection at home, how can he pay for Xbox Live?


There's this little game called Halo 3: ODST. It's pretty cool. You might have heard of it. It's coming to the Xbox 360 packed to the gill with the entire Halo 3 multiplayer map assortment, plus, three brand new maps. Check our lengthy direct-feed videos of all three new war zones.

Halo 3: ODST Heretic Map Direct-Feed Gameplay Footage »

  • · Heretic returns players to familiar ground as the “Halo 2” arena Midship makes its long-rumored debut in “Halo 3.” The stark interior of the Pious Inquisitor might appear austere on first glance, but Heretic’s symmetrical spaces require players to execute complex strategies in order to outplay their opponents. 

Read More »

10,275 Gamers Played Halo 2 In The Last 24 Hours

At The Azenberg Group's [A] List Summit, vice president of strategy and client services Steve Fowler took some time to chat with me about his days at Microsoft. Serving as lead product manager from 2000 to 2003, Fowler was responsible for the brand management of numerous action games, including a little title called Halo. The word on the street was that Fowler was largely responsible for the game's tagline, "Combat Evolved". When asked about its origins, he told me:

"Back in the original days of the Halo brand, before it was anything, we did a lot of consumer research. We went across the world, talking to consumers in Europe, Asia, and North America. We were concerned with gamers that weren't aware of what Halo was and we needed to be concerned with them because if this was going to be a franchise title then we couldn't just rely on core gamers or people that were following it since the MacWorld announcement. The new customers were going to be the ones that would make or break the Xbox, so we need Halo to go bigger than that.

The emotional response to the word halo was not exactly what we were looking for. [laughs] It seems trivial now because it's such an established brand and it's synonymous now with unbelievable sci-fi action. Back in the day, halo was seen as a feminine word and had religious connotations to it, so we felt like we needed a definer. 'Combat Evolved' was what ended up being that definer. [laughs]

There was a lot of back and forth between Bungie, the internal Microsoft marketing team, and the outsourced creative agency. There was a lot of debate, a lot of nail biting, a lot of screaming at each other [laughs], and lots of compromise. It was the single piece of content that defined the Xbox. At that time it was the next-gen system, so we were evolving combat. First-person shooters on consoles were never really that popular outside of GoldenEye 007, so Halo was a big risk. It was a bold statement that said, 'Hey, this is a shooter that was meant to be played best on a console with a gamepad in your hand.'"

When I asked Fowler if he was the one that coined the phrase, he shared credit with his team. He also told me that a lot of people at Microsoft weren't keen on Master Chief representing the Xbox and would have preferred a certain Oddworld Inhabitant.

Read More »

You'll be dropping straight into hell in Bungie's Halo 3: ODST. Here are men crazy enough to sit shotgun with you on your ride into New Mombasa.

Halo 3: ODST Vidoc Desperate Measures »

(Tekken + TapouT) + (Halo + Ecko) = Hipster Gamer Fashion

Capitalizing on the burgeoning popularity of video games, two fashion labels have started up lines of video-game clothing. Namco Bandai announced multi-year partnership with TapoutT to produce a line of Tekken 6 clothes. Meanwhile, global fashion giant Marc Ecko has kicked off a line of Halo t-shirts. While retro-game clothing has been popular at stores like Hot Topic, clothes based on modern games are comparatively unpopular in America (Japan is an entirely different story). TapouT and Ecko will undoubtedly change that.

Before Affliction became the hot fashion brand with the mixed-martial arts crowd, TapouT was king. Formerly working with popular fighters like Tito Ortiz and Chuck Liddell, TapouT was the number-one brand in American MMA. Unfortunately, the company's popularity peaked at the very beginning of the sport's boom. Affliction quickly supplanted and surpassed TapouT. Perhaps reaching out to a different crowd will help the company's fortunes. Maybe Tekken 6 t-shirts and hoodies will sell like cinnamon buns (hot cakes are lame).

Read More »


Halo 3: ODST Available For Preorder

I know there are tons of Halo fans reading TheFeed, so I'm certain that Bungie's 343 Industries' Comic-Con 09 panel will be of great interest to many of you. Details are scarce on "The Halo Franchise: What's Next" panel, but I do know that it's being headed up by franchise development director Frank O'Connor. TheFeed's Patrick Klepek will be on hand to deliver information, insight, and humour (not humor, he's funny like Hugh Grant).

What mysteries will be revealed by Bungie 343 Industries? Read G4tv.com's live blog of "The Halo Franchise: What's Next" to find out! My guess is that the company will use the con to reveal an enormous crossover game with San Rio's Hello Kitty...but that's just conjecture. Before you head on over to the live blog, leave a comment and let me know what you think is next for Halo.

10 years ago (yesterday) Master Chief and Bungie embarked on a path that would lead to one of the most successful and popular franchises in videogaming history... this is their story.

Wow, MacWorld 1999 footage... vintage.

Halo 10 Year Retrospective »

Halo 3

Not only is today the day Michael Jackson will be buried (provided no zombification occurs, of course) it's also Bungie Day!

Bungie has alway had a special fondness for the number seven -- check out this compilation of all the sevens in the Bungie-verse and be amazed at the depth of the company's obsession with this digit -- so they've chosen today as Bungie Day. See, it's the seventh day of the seventh month, and that means it's time to celebrate! You might expect that Bungie would want a present from you, but no. Bungie is giving presents on its very special day. Generous.

Here's what you'll be unwrapping:

  • Recon Armor: Fire up Halo 3 and get yourself into the Bungie Vs. The World queue for your chance to blast Bungie employees and earn some bitchin' Recon Armor while you're at it. All the best people are wearing this flaming gear--don't miss out! Bungie employees will be playing you on player-created maps, so consider the playing field leveled. Just don't be a dork and sign-out of games that don't feature Bungie employees.
  • A first look at Heretic, Citadel, and Longshore maps. Check Bungie's site later today for more info.
  • Bungie Pro Video, formerly known as Render-to-Video, is going live today. Again, keep refreshing Bungie's site later today for all the details.
  • Bungie Day Podcast: A special podcast, just for you, lucky.
  • Roger's Recon Hunt: A chance to win Recon armor without even playing Halo 3! Again, more details later at Bungie's site.

I'm happy there's a bunch of stuff I can do from my desk here at work to help celebrate, but maybe you're fortunate enough to have the day off. Are you planning on celebrating?


Halo 3: OSDT is being released on September 22, and looks like it features some pretty compelling narrative approaches. I have to say, I’m looking forward to seeing the Halo universe from some varying perspectives for a change.

But the bigger news is of course that the next installment beyond ODST, Halo: Reach was teased, followed by the announcement that multiplayer beta codes for Reach will be included with retail copies of ODST.

is expected to be released sometime next year.

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