Reaching for the Stars • Page 2

Bungie talks Activision, Halo 4 and more.

Eurogamer: Activision has a bad reputation at the moment. Does that concern you?

Brian Jarrard: Do they? No, it doesn't concern us at all. We've spoken quite a bit about this. Certainly it's not great the situation that it's in.

I don't know any more about it than anybody else does. We're game developers. We have a great plan. We're excited about our future and our new universe that we're going to bring to life.

We have an awesome deal with those guys. Ultimately, I don't think it's going to matter who helps that game into the hands of gamers, other than we're happy to know Activision's got world-class publishing expertise across mutliple platforms and they're going to be a great partner that's given us a great relationship and a great deal.

So, we're not too worried about it.

Niles Sankey: 80 per cent of my answer is, we're still, in total honesty, getting over Reach. I don't mean getting over it, but excited to release it.

But, when we do look to the future, the nice thing about working at Bungie I'd say is, unique to any of the jobs I've had in the industry, the publishers know they can trust us.

They know if they trust Bungie we will deliver a great game experience. We won't fail at that. That's earned us a lot of freedom and latitude to do what we feel is right.

In the end I'm not worried at all. I'm sure the future's bright. I'll leave it at that.

Eurogamer: Is Master Chief in the campaign?

Brian Jarrard: Master Chief's not part of the Reach campaign. You can get him in the Armoury as fan service. But it will not feature his story.

Eurogamer: How long is the campaign?

Brian Jarrard: I can't give you a number of hours. Everyone wants to try to quantify it. Even looking back at the first Halo games, I've heard such radically different play through experiences and times.

Eurogamer: Is it bigger than Halo 3?

Brian Jarrard: I'd say it's at least the same, if not bigger. But it depends on how you're going to decide to play it.

Niles Sankey: There are a lot more options and things to keep you playing anyway.

Brian Jarrard: You will never feel like, "Why am I replaying back through this mission again and going backwards?" Each moment is totally original and unique and there's a new experience around every corner.

Eurogamer: Why did you build a new engine for Reach? Was it because of fan feedback?

Niles Sankey: We're our biggest critics by far. With every aspect of the game - it's not just the graphics but other things like animation and AI are huge leaps forward.

We make games we want to play. Of course, we want to play a great game with great graphics. So when we set out for Reach we said, 'Well sure, we gotta up the stakes here.'

Better graphics was challenging because we needed to retain the notion of, these are open levels that players can play how they want. It's a sandbox game.

Brian Jarrard: Just doing what we did three years ago obviously wouldn't be good enough. It's certainly not a reaction to critics or complaints or anything like that.

It's more about, how do we push this even further? And how are we going to realise this vision of having bigger missions with hyper detailed characters and much larger squads and bigger encounters?

We realised none of that would have been possible with most of our old tech. It needed to be gutted just to bring this Halo experience up to the level we had envisioned, and also to bring this game up to the current generation of game expectations and game experiences.

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Wesley Yin-Poole

Wesley Yin-Poole

Deputy Editor  |  wyp100

Wesley is Eurogamer's deputy editor. He likes news, interviews, and more news. He also likes Street Fighter more than anyone can get him to shut up about it.


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