News

Traveling Tidings

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Over the past three weeks, I've been fortunate enough to go support our events in Orlando (Outpost), Chicago (esports), and Philadelphia (Outpost). Although back-to-back-to-back weekends of Halo events is a blast, I think we're just getting started... as this summer is still jam-packed with Halo: Outpost Discovery, esports events, and gaming conventions.

Let's take a look at what's coming up in the next few sunny weeks!

Halo: Outpost Discovery

Orlando

Our first event was an absolute blast! It was filled with fans of all ages and all different walks of life, incredible panels (You might not know this, but Steve Downes and Jen Taylor are quite the duo), unbelievable Spartan cosplayers, so much Halo content it's actually absurd, and plenty of learnings.

While down there I had the opportunity to participate in the first entirely in-person Community Playdate. Over the course of the weekend, ske7ch and Bravo narrated hour-long showdowns between me and my fellow Xbox/343 employees, Major Nelson, Frankie, Grim, and our teams comprised of community members from the audience. Friday was special because I went against Major Nelson while WWE star, Adam Cole, and LateNightGaming joined my side of the stage and we went undefeated in various Halo 5 minigames. Saturday and Sunday were also quite memorable with matches against Frankie and Grim (and his entire family) – both of which did not end well for them, though Frank's squad put up a good fight.

Regardless of my own good times though, we were actively monitoring the event so that we could improve things every minute, hour, and day we were there. Rather than shy away from your feedback on the first day or two, we embraced it so that we could improve in areas such as line management, autograph sessions, and more. Our partners in Halo: Outpost Discovery, Herschend Live, jumped on all of this feedback with us and helped bring about plenty of notable changes, which have since carried over to Philadelphia and will certainly make their way to the other cities.

Philadelphia

We landed in the city of brotherly love just in time to be greeted with a record-breaking heat wave and could only combat it with cool, convention center air and lots of water. That said, our teams handled it like champions and worked to ensure this event would go smoothly, and it showed. We could immediately see the impact the changes had, and allowed for a better Halo experience for everyone. To show you what the event was like from a fan perspective, you can check out UberNick's new vlog covering his trip from Northern Ireland to Philadelphia just for Halo. 

If I can be completely honest Philadelphia feels like a blur, which probably just means I was having fun the whole time – or that I ate too many Philly Cheesesteaks – but I can't wait for us to head to Chicago next weekend and do it all again... but with deep dish pizzas.

Chicago, Houston, & Anaheim

Since this is a traveling attraction, we're always on the the move. In fact, our Chicago stop is taking place just next Friday, which means we've got team members already packing their suitcases so that they can prepare to drop in and get everything ready for you.

If you'd like to join us and experience the Halo universe in a new way with fellow fans, here are our upcoming Halo: Outpost Discovery events!

We look forward to seeing you at one of these cities, but if you can't make it out I encourage you to follow the fun on the official @HaloOutpost accounts on Instagram, Twitter, and Mixer!

Halo: The Master Chief Collection

Legacy Maps and game types Migration

Our plans to move your favorite creations (maps and game types) from Halo 3, Halo: Reach, and Halo 4 over to Halo: The Master Chief Collection have now found our dates!

We're doing a one-time copy of the maps and game types located in your file shares to help bring them over to MCC. Due to the complex nature of this process, we will only be able to do a single migration for each file type, so we’ve split this into two separate days – one day for maps and one day for game types. By allowing players to fill up their file share with game types during the first pull and again with maps on the second pull, players can maximize their slots and bring over as many of each file type as they can fit in their file share.

  • Game Types – August 12 at 10 AM PT 
  • Maps – August 26 at 10 AM PT

What do you have to do?

Load up Halo 3, Halo: Reach, and Halo 4 on your Xbox 360 (or on your Xbox One via back-compat) and ensure the local files you want to copy over to MCC are uploaded to your file share before each pull. Please ensure your game types are uploaded up before August 12. After 10am on August 12, please leave them there for at least 24 hours without altering so we can properly perform the copy (and verify that it transferred correctly). Then some time before August 26, please take some time to place your maps on your file shares across all three titles.

To read up on the full process, head over to the MCC Forums here on Waypoint!

Gamescom

We are currently planning to be at Gamescom this August to show off our Halo: Reach PC E3 Demo to our biggest European fans and players. Since the team is hard at work on the upcoming FireFlight build, we wanted to leave them to it and not pull them away from important matters. That said, we know that there are still plenty of you who have yet to go hands on with this Tip of the Spear Demo, and we're happy to be bringing it to you in Germany.

Additionally, it'll be my first Gamescom, and I'm excited for it to be happening with MCC – so be sure to say hi if you see me at the booth!

Playlist Updates

The weekly playlist updates for MCC on Xbox have continued, and you can find all of the information for each in their respective threads on Waypoint:

If you're ever curious about what's been going on in the world of MCC on Xbox, you should swing by our dedicated forum and get caught up with the latest. 

Halo 5: Guardians

To no ones surprise, Husky Raid crushed it. Since launch the population and playtime has remained extremely high, so we ended up keeping it around for a little while longer and had to change up our planned schedule as a result.

Since that pivot, we've outlined a new calendar for all things Halo 5, which you can find right here: 

Playlist Calendar

  • July 25: Halo 2 BR Slayer rotates in for Covenant Slayer
  • July 25: Warzone Turbo goes live for the weekend
  • August 1: Snipers rotates into Ranked for the final month of the season
  • August 1: Roaming King rotates in for Mythic Shotty Snipers
  • August 8: Castle Wars rotates in for Halo 2 BR Slayer
  • August 15: Forerunner Slayer rotates in for Roaming King
  • August 15: Warzone Assault goes live for the weekend
  • August 22: Action Sack rotates in for Castle Wars
  • August 29: Rock 'n' Rail rotates in for Forerunner Slayer
  • August 29: Warzone Turbo goes live for the weekend

As we get closer and closer to Halo Infinite's release, our team has noticed an increase in the amount of players asking for Double XP. As a result, we wanted to let you all know that the first week of any rotational playlist, Warzone Assault, and Warzone Turbo will always feature Double XP rewards. If you're looking to climb those last few ranks, be sure to take advantage of this opportunity!

Halo Championship Series

RED BULL RISE TILL DAWN | JULY 13

If I told you that I went to a Halo esports event on top of the Willis (Sears) Tower in Chicago, would you believe me? Well, whether or not you do, it happened – and it was magical. Seeing players arrive just before sunset so that they could register, begin warming up, and prepare for a long night of Halo 3 action was just the beginning. The sun burned the sky red and orange for a while, but faded away behind the horizon to let the competition begin. From that point on the matches went throughout the night, Red Bulls were drank, pancakes were eaten, and ultimately a victorious duo held their trophies high as the sun rose over Lake Michigan behind them.

I don't want to spoil any of the results if you haven't seen it yet, but you can catch the entire broadcast here or just watch the Grand Finals here! Trust me, it's really worth the watch.

FACEIT IGNITE: HALO EUROPEAN OPEN | AUGUST 17-18

The first major Halo 3 event in Europe in approximately ten years is approaching fast and will go down at Twickenham Stadium, August 17-18. FACEIT Ignite will be holding a full 32 team bracket for the $25,000 Halo 3 4v4 tournament and also host a Halo 5 2v2 tournament with a $5,000 prize pool. I know our top European players have been eager to jump into some Halo esports competitions again, so I'm expecting them to show up big in both competitions.

As always, stay up to date with the latest event information by keeping an eye on Halo.gg/Ignite2019 and @HCS on Twitter!

HALO CLASSIC | SEPTEMBER 6-8

UGC keeps revealing more and more about this event, and it just keeps looking better and better. Their recent news of a $5,000 Halo 5 2v2 tournament, $1,000 Halo 3 FFA, and $2,000 Halo: CE 2v2 mean that there will be all sort of opportunities to win at the Halo Classic in Atlantic City. To secure your tickets for any of these competitions, or to spectate, head to ugchalo.com today!

Microsoft Store Tournaments

Our monthly Microsoft Store Halo events are back! After a short break they will be returning next Saturday, August 3, with a Halo 5 Free-For-All at a Microsoft Store near you. As most of you know by now, all the information you need – including a link to register for free – can be found on smash.gg/mrshalo!  

Halo Gear

1000 Toys

We've partnered with 1000 Toys to bring your favorite Spartan to life with a bit of style. This Master Chief Mjolnir Mark V RE:EDIT 1/12 scale action figure prototype was on display at San Diego Comic Con last week and turned more than a few heads. It's looking great, and I can't wait to get my hands on one for my desk here at the studio.

Wicked Cool Toys

If you're excited for Halo Infinite related toys, you may be glad to hear our Halo Gear team has announced that Wicked Cool Toys will be our global toy licensee for the upcoming title. You can read the full press release here! 

HALO: SILENT STORM

Chief has been getting soft recently, not really, but Halo: Silent Storm has, in the form of a paperback version. You can get the cozier version of this new Master Chief story next Tuesday, July 30, on store shelves.

In case you didn't see it already, @HaloGear is hosting a giveaway of a few of them on Twitter to celebrate their release!

  • 343 Employee Spotlight: Matt Campbell is a Narrative Animator here at the studio, and although we could focus on him being an incredible softball player, we decided to talk about his work on this year's Halo Infinite "Discover Hope" trailer. Read up on how he got his start in the industry and his contributions to the studio in our latest 343 Employee Spotlight!
  • Community Spotlight: We don't think the paint will ever stop flowing or that the ink will ever dry on Halo fan-made creations. Every Community Spotlight you all show that there are no signs of this talented fanbase slowing down with their mindblowing projects. To see the most recent community efforts, give our latest Community Spotlight a look!
  • 343 Social Stream: Last Wednesday snickerdoodle hosted Cam, a Studio Operations Manager, on the 343 Social Stream to talk about his day-to-day here and, of course, knock out some Super Fiesta matches in the process. If you missed it, you can catch the rebroadcast right here!
  • Audio Field Recordings: Every other Saturday our Audio Team posts videos of their field recording sessions on the @Halo Instagram account. They travel around the world to capture unique sounds, find new bites in the wilderness nearby, or create their own sounds in the foley room. No matter where they end up though, they have a ton of fun and end up capturing their process on video. There might be one coming out tomorrow, so give it a follow!

Art

Since I started this Community Update with a statue of Master Chief's Halo 2 Anniversary model, I figured I'd toss this section back to the Halo 2 Classic era. As I write this, I'm just now realizing that Halo 2 will be fifteen years old in November. That also means we're only five years out from having a Halo 2 Anniversary Anniversary. However, rather than go down that rabbithole, let's just enjoy the game's original box art in perfect quality.

That ought to do it for now, but I look forward to chatting with you all again soon!

Until next time,

- Uny

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