Microsoft dropped a cluster bomb of new info about Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary this weekend, including announcing Xbox Kinect support for the upcoming Halo compilation and revealing that the classic multiplayer map Hang ‘Em High has been reimagined for the game.
Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary Edition is slated to release Nov. 14. You can pre-order it from Amazon here: Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary.
The Xbox Kinect functionality in Halo: Anniversary will include voice commands and a new feature that lets players gather canonical information about the Halo universe as they explore the game and relive the iconic adventure. First up is Analyze Mode, a Kinect-exclusive feature that allows players to “scan” items of interest within the campaign to populate the Library, an interactive encyclopedia of Halo lore. Once in Analyze mode, new articles of interest can be added to the Library by focusing the reticule on them and saying “Scan.”
Next up for Kinect support is The Library, an expansive index that provides detailed information on items of interest players have scanned through Analyze Mode, such as vehicles, characters, enemies and weapons. Through the use of gesture controls, players can explore the entire Library at any time and then return to the campaign to continue unlocking more secrets within the“Halo universe.
The final bit of Kinect support in Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary is Voice Commands, which allows players to harness the technology of Kinect to reload a weapon, throw grenades, switch seamlessly between Classic and Remastered graphics and more, using nothing but their voice.
Now, as for the re-imagined map Hang ‘Em High, Microsoft announced that it will be called “High Noon.” High Noon (also known as Hang ‘Em High in classic mode) rounds out the seven fan-favorite multiplayer maps launching with Halo: Anniversary. High Noon returns players to the familiar canyons and catwalks of Hang ‘Em High, the “Halo: Combat Evolved” classic multiplayer map, now reimagined for “Halo: Anniversary” with unprecedented detail. The vast generator complexes, which power this enormous slipspace portal, allow it to connect with an unknown number of locations across the galaxy. High Noon is a densely-packed arena of platforms, corridors and cover, best suited for team-based combat in both Slayer and Objective gametypes (4 – 12 players).
Halo Waypoint has been the ultimate destination for Halo fans on Xbox LIVE since 2009, and this weekend, 343 Industries offered a sneak peak at what’s in store for the groundbreaking online service this holiday:
- New Halo Waypoint Interface – A revamped design and user interface lets players navigate Halo Waypoint and access the content they want more easily than ever before, whether they’re online, on their Xbox 360 or on their Windows Phone.
- Halo Waypoint ATLAS – Available on Windows Phones this holiday, Halo Waypoint ATLAS (Advanced TacticaL Assault System) is a new mobile experience that offers players a detailed, top-down view of any “Halo: Anniversary” or “Halo: Reach” map in real-time, letting them monitor teammates’ movements and positions as they play. This innovative app encourages strategic gameplay and offers a fun companion experience to any multiplayer match.
- Custom Challenges – Building upon the “Halo” series’ genre-defining user-creation toolset, 343 Industries is empowering the community even further by introducing Custom Challenges in “Halo: Anniversary” and “Halo: Reach.” For the first time, players will be able to issue custom Challenges and create friendly competitions with Xbox friends, unlocking infinite creative possibilities to invent and test their “Halo” skills against one another. For example, players can create a Challenge to get a specific number of headshots (say 50) in Multiplayer, within 24 hours. They can then try the challenge themselves, or invite their friends to give it a shot to see who can get the most headshots. Challenges can be created for Campaign, Matchmaking Firefight, Multiplayer and even Custom modes.
Players will also be able to earn “Halo: Reach” Credits by completing Custom Challenges, infusing new creative potential into the game’s deep player progression system, and leveraging all the great new multiplayer maps from Halo: Anniversary.