Microsoft has given a timeframe and a subtitle to its first major new Halo game for the Xbox One.
The game will be called Halo 5: Guardians, and it'll launch in fall 2015. A Microsoft blog post describes the game as "the next installment in the legendary saga of the Master Chief." Microsoft also plans to launch the Halo television series around the same time.
Details are still scarce, with no additional trailers or screenshots to go along with announcement, and only vague promises of what the game will be like. Microsoft says the game will run at 60 frames per second, with dedicated servers for multiplayer, and with "the scope, features and scale we've been dreaming of for more than a decade."
If you really want to read into things, there are a few subtle clues in Microsoft's announcement. The box art shows two characters. On top is a svelter Spartan soldier with a glowing blue visor—let the Cortana speculation begin—and on the bottom is the Master Chief, appearing as a reflection.
Also, Guardians are not exactly a new concept in Halo, though they've never been taken seriously in the past. In Halo multiplayer, players can be killed by "The Guardians," when the circumstances aren't easily explained (for instance, when a player strays out of bounds on the game map). But as the Halo Wiki points out, Guardian deaths have become more common in recent games, and Bungie.net has listed Guardians as a "Tool of Destruction." There may be an opportunity to expand the story around these mysterious entities. If you really want to get deep into the lore, you can also watch last year's E3 trailer, and then read some analysis of what it actually shows.
Halo 5: Guardians won't technically be the first Halo game for Xbox One. Halo: Spartan Assault launched on the console in October, but was a mobile-style game previously available for Windows 8 and Windows Phone. It's unclear if Microsoft will release any other Halo games between now and fall 2015. In the meantime, Microsoft promises to reveal more information about Halo 5 at the E3 trade show in June.
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