A Behind The Scenes Look At Final Halo: Reach Map Pack

As I’m sure many of you have heard by now, Bungie recently signed a ten year exclusive publishing deal with Activision. What this means for us as gamers is the alleged end of the Halo franchise, which is set to go out with a bang with this final ‘Defiant’ map pack.

This is according to a recent blog post from Bungie, who have confirmed their discontinued development of the Halo series.

We are not building map packs for Halo: Reach and we’re not working on any engine modifications, with code pressed tightly to metal.

343 Industries released this exclusive behind the scenes look at the ‘Defiant’ Map pack which was co-developed by Certain Affinity, a studio that has also helped create DLC content for Call of Duty: Black Ops and Left 4 Dead. Although I don’t actually own Halo: Reach, the three maps look pretty good and varied and are shown in more detail in this preview article.

As YouTube user/Naruto fanboy shadowkunai12 put it:

Well what I’ve learned from this video are 2 things:

1:The defiant map pack is awesome

2: Our beloved Halo series is in good hands.

I really don’t believe that the Halo franchise is dead though, as Microsoft is set to acquire the series along with 343 Industries. During the transition, Bungie will continue to support Halo: Reach through playlist additions and upgrades, community created maps, and yet-to-be undetermined community contests. I’m sure as a result that Halo: Reach will have a shorter shelf life than previous Halo titles and that we could expect a new Halo title sometime between Q4 of 2011 to Q1-Q2 of 2012. The ‘Defiant’ map pack will be priced at 800 Microsoft points ($10) and is scheduled for release on March 15th.


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  • as I understand it bungie has clearly stated this is not the last map pack, just that they are no longre making maps. Maps are still being amde for Halo by 343 and other studios.

    • Daniel Horowitz (HavenDan)

      Right, as I stated, Microsoft will continue to support Halo: Reach through playlist additions and upgrades, community created maps, and yet-to-be undetermined community contests.

  • Brian Heitzenrater (FrehleyzComet)

    So how long before Activision breaks up Bungie like they did with Infinity Ward? What a big mistake on Bungie’s part imo. 🙁

  • I know that you probably aren’t used to grades at Sarah Lawrence, but try to remember what it was like in high school. This article gets an F–for failure.

    The claim that the Defiant Map Pack is the “Final Halo: Reach Map Pack”, as stated in the title, is completely unsubstantiated. Not a single other news entity, to my knowledge, has reported this.

    Bungie is no longer owned by Microsoft. To the contrary, they recently became incorporated. Bungie, Inc. announced last Friday that they would continue to support Halo: Reach with playlist updates, as well as community maps and contests.

    343 Industries is an internal group within Microsoft that is responsible for creative control of the Halo franchise, and it has a hand in all Halo content that is now developed. Frank O’ Connor, the Franchise Development Director at 343 Industries, recently stated that while 343 Industries will collaborate with outside companies for the development of some Halo content (such as the Halo Legends collection of anime shorts, or the upcoming Defiant Map Pack co-created with Certain Affinity), they are going to keep production of the main game entries into the franchise “close to home”. A look at 343 Industries’ job postings shows that they are looking for a variety of positions related to AAA game development (having already shipped a AAA game is also a prerequisite for these positions).

    Frank O’ Connor also recently stated in an interview that the Noble Map Pack (developed by Bungie and released on November 30, 2010) was definitely the last map pack from Bungie. That does not mean it is the last map pack for Halo: Reach, as evidenced by the Defiant Map Pack.

    343 Industries has not stated anything to suggest that this is the final Halo: Reach map pack.

    @ Brain Heitzenrater (FrehleyzComet)

    Bungie is a self-owned company. They are not owned by Activision Blizzard. They have made a publishing agreement with them, the exact terms of which are not known to us, but it’s safe to say that Bungie had the upper hand in the process of drafting such an agreement.

    • Daniel Horowitz (HavenDan)

      Tl; Dr

      But seriously, I mentioned that “Microsoft will continue to support Halo: Reach through playlist additions and upgrades, community created maps, and yet-to-be undetermined community contests.” It’s even in an above comment.

      Maybe you’re the one that needs to get an education?

  • @ Daniel Horowitz (HavenDan)

    You still don’t get it–that quoted statement is incorrect. It was Bungie that made that claim, not Microsoft:

    Quoted from :

    “You can also expect us to continue infusing Halo: Reach’s online game with plentiful playlist additions and upgrades, the best community-crafted maps we can get our hands on, and some outstanding community contests and events that we’ll start talking more about in the weeks and months ahead. If you’ve been riding the Bungie ride for a good number of years, you already know the drill. The days and months ahead hold a ton of surprises, so stick around – we don’t plan on going out with a whimper.”

    And are you still contending it’s the final map pack for Halo: Reach? Based on what information?

    • Daniel Horowitz (HavenDan)

      I see..

      Gotcha, I misread the source, it seems Microsoft has not given an official statement on the issue of what they are doing with future DLC. Only Bungie has released a statement.

      I still think they’re probably not going to release another map pack, but that’s just based on my intuition, not any source.

      It’s funny that you point it out because we heard positive things about this from Edleman, the PR firm that represents Bungie.

      Thanks for the help.

  • There is no reason to believe that this would be the last map pack for Reach. It has never been stated and the past trends for DLC are against it as well. Both Halo 2 and 3 had 4 map packs each.

    If you want to be taken seriously as a writer HavenDan you will need to be more sure of your sources. There are some notable mistakes here which HiredN00bs has already pointed out. Not lashing out at people questioning your flawed reporting would also be beneficial.

    • Daniel Horowitz (HavenDan)

      Your commenting, aren’t you?

      • Stephen

        You should brush up on you’re grammar two.

        Also, I am not HiredN00bs.

        • Daniel Horowitz (HavenDan)

          I think we both made grammatical errors in our latest comments. Such is the nature of the internet not having spellcheck like Word does.

  • Your comments towards my schooling have inspired me to pursue an education in writing. Maybe someday, I too will be able to inject frivolous, unsubstantiated, counterintuitive opinion into the titles of my public relations regurgitation pieces.

    • Daniel Horowitz (HavenDan)

      I hope you do, it may do some good.

      • As would admitting to yourself that you’re probably wrong and further editing your article.

        • Daniel Horowitz (HavenDan)

          I’m pretty sure I already changed the quote attribute from Microsoft to Bungie