Halo 4 Turbo, Spartan Assault, & Xbox One Thoughts!

Hello everyone, just sharing my thoughts on a few things: The Halo 4 Weapon Tuning, 343 Industries and Vanguard Games Windows 8 game Halo Spartan Assault, and finally a particular topic in regards to the on-going (but expected) Xbox One and PS4 console war; because ’tis the season for console wars.

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Share your thoughts and enjoy!

– Chief Landless

Geronimo!

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Halo 4: Complete Weapon Tuning Details – (June 3rd Update)

Hi there, here’s a video I put together detailing the changes made by 343 Industries to Halo 4’s Multiplayer Sandbox as of June 3rd. Don’t worry, your game isn’t glitched, the 4 burst Battle Rifle is real 😉

– Chief Landless

Geronimo!

Halo 4 Weapon Tuning Info – June 3rd Update

Here are my thoughts on the proposed Halo 4 Weapon Tuning to various weapons in the Halo 4 sandbox. There isn’t a finalized list out there yet, but I list off the repeatedly mentioned weapons and their changes as all signs point to them making the cut on June 3rd.

I hope you enjoy and feel free to discuss your thoughts on the matter!

– Chief Landless

Geronimo!

The Halo Bulletin: May 15th, 2013

This weeks Halo Bulletin covers multiple topics such as weapon balancing, matchmaking updates and more

Weapon Tuning Live Stream Event

Current State of Weapon Tuning

What 343 has been looking at recently. No final list yet.

We’ve mentioned that we’ve been looking at the overall state of game types with vehicular combat and attempting to find a balance with vehicle weapons that makes them the perfect mix of deadly, viable, and, of course, balanced. As of right now, both the Warthog and Mantis chain guns have received a 35% damage increase. In current testing, this increase provides a deadly method for objective play and Slayer domination for players who utilize vehicle play.

Matchmaking Update

Premiering this coming week is the Community Forge Island playlist, which brings with it 6 new community-made maps on Forge Island, and will be available until the June 3rd Matchmaking Playlist Update. If you haven’t yet downloaded the free Forge Island canvas, head here to download to your Xbox 360. The Community Cartographers have worked hard to select some of their favorite map and game type combinations:

Map: Elevated by Smexi Bilzo
Infinity Slayer
Capture the Flag – 5 Flag
Extraction 1-Site

Map: Crucifix by Wraith2098
Capture the Flag – 5 Flag
King of the Hill
Infinity Slayer

Map: Onyx by Hahkarazy
Throwdown v3 Slayer
Throwdown Capture the Flag – 5 Flag
SWAT

Map: Confined by Big Papa Salot
TD Slayer Pro
Team Snipers
Capture the Flag – 5 Flag

Map: Ender by The Fated Fire
King of the Hill
Infinity Slayer
SWAT

Map: Forgotten by Flying Shoe ILR
Extraction 1-Site
Capture the Flag – 5 Flag
King of the Hill

In addition, Big Team Infinity Slayer and Infinity Slayer have some updates as well.

Big Team Infinity Slayer:

  • Slayer Pro added to voting options.
  • Complex added to map rotation.
  • Voting options reorganized to provide increased variety.

Infinity Slayer:

  • Slayer Pro added to voting options.
  • Complex removed from map rotation.
  • Voting options reorganized to provide increased variety.

– Chief Landless

Geronimo!

The Halo Bulletin: May 8th, 2013

This weeks Halo Bulletin covers multiple topics such as weapon balancing, matchmaking updates and more

Current State of Weapon Tuning

After reviewing community feedback from past weeks, we felt it was necessary to clarify that the red reticle range (RRR) of the DMR has been reduced, and the RRR of the LightRifle has been increased to match this new range exactly (Note: this is different from reducing the DMR to the LightRifle’s original range). What we’ve found in current testing is that the LightRifle is now a favorite weapon for long-range engagements, and in terms of kill time, a zoomed LightRifle currently outclasses the DMR. This has created a dynamic that allows the DMR to excel in a very specific range and role – at equal skill levels, LightRifle users will punish the DMR at range, and Battle Rifle and Carbine users will have an advantage at close range.

We’re also now looking at reducing the projectile spread (inaccuracy caused when shooting rapidly) to the Carbine to make the weapon even more consistent. The projectile spread is not visible to players, so reducing this weapon will create a more consistent and understandable experience.

Also, our latest tests have included a slight damage bump to the Magnum – while it is still the same amount of shots to kill (6), the slight increase will make it more valuable as a secondary weapon, particularly in team play when “team shooting” (firing at the same opponents with your teammates). In Quinn’s words, “The Magnum feels good. It just feels really good.” Quinn gets kind of weird when he talks about weapons. [bs angel note: And even when he’s not.]

Matchmaking Update

This coming Monday, an encore of Spartan Ops Episode 6 will be available in Matchmaking. One of the things we’ll be doing in our next Matchmaking Update, which will take place on May 20th, will be showcasing some of our favorite Forge Island creations in a limited time only Community Forge Island playlist. If you’d like to submit your creations (or those of a friend) for consideration, be sure to post in the Community Cartographer’s Thread in the proper format.

– Chief Landless

Geronimo!

Weapon Tuning Reveal Date! The Halo Bulletin: May 1st, 2013

As you probably know by now, we have been actively tuning some of the weapons in the Halo 4 sandbox. We are still regularly playtesting, and excited to say that we’re nearing the end of tweaking and tuning each weapon. At this point, we are happy to share several key items that we’re looking forward to in the schedule:

  • In the month of May, we’ll be inviting a small group of community members into the studio to get a sneak peak at the new weapon tuning. We are finalizing this list and will announce once we have done so.
  • We’ll also be bringing you a live stream that will allow everyone to check out some of the weapon tuning in action before the settings deploy globally. This live stream will feature insight and commentary from designers, as well as gameplay from community members and 343 staff. This live stream will give you a close look at how the newly tuned weapons behave alongside one another. Once the live stream is officially on the calendar, we’ll announce the date and time. The location, however, will absolutely be http://www.twitch.tv/343industries.
  • Before we go live, we’ll be detailing the final changes for each weapon on Halo Waypoint. This content will give you a detailed breakdown of what to expect when the tuning goes live.
  • Our final changes, once solidified, will go live across all Halo 4 playlists on Monday, June 3rd.

Now, onto the next Matchmaking update. This coming Monday, we’ll be adding quite a few maps into several existing playlists. These maps were showcased in our Community Forge Test and FFA Forge Test playlists, and have since been updated to provide new experiences across multiple game modes. Here’s what will be added and updated come Monday.

Continue reading

Weapon Tuning & Join In Progress Settings! The Halo Bulletin: April 24th 2013

This weeks Halo Bulletin addresses the current state of the Halo 4 weapon sandbox tuning and information in regards to the updated join in progress parameters.

Weapon Tuning Status Update:

Battle Rifle

We announced last week that we’re investigating the feasibility of a 4-shot Battle Rifle and saw a lot of interest regarding how many bullets it takes to kill an enemy. There are indeed complications that exist around a BR that takes exactly 4 shots (or 12 bullets) to kill, and most relate specifically to latency and online play. While a 12-bullet kill feels good and rewards accurate players in a LAN setting, the vast majority of the game is played online, and the 11 -bullet kill provides a consistent online experience while still rewarding skill. Right now, we are testing a 4-shot BR that kills on the 11th bullet, which allows for a small margin of error in online play.

We had also mentioned the reduced rate of fire on the BR. When we brought the BR to a 4-shot, the weapon was dominating at all ranges. To balance it out, the fire rate now matches the DMR exactly in current testing.

DMR and LightRifle 

We’ve slightly reduced the range at which the reticle turns red for the DMR, and once again matched the LightRifle to this distance. This is based off some feedback we received last week that questioning whether or not it is currently too easy to engage people across the map. To maintain skillful long range battles, we’ve reduced this range slightly for this week’s testing. We’re also investigating slightly increasing the rate of fire on the LightRifle when zoomed, which increases its viability at range.

Assault Rifle

The current Assault Rifle kills in 16 rounds, making it technically possible to kill 2 players with one magazine if not a single shot is missed. Our current balance testing reduces the rounds to kill by 2 or 3 shots, making this feat a bit more achievable. However, a significant reduction in auto-aim makes this quite difficult and demands a bit more skill from players who wield the AR. Our current tests bring us to an optimal kill time range that lies between that of Halo: CE’s and Halo 3’s Assault Rifles.

As we tweak these values, we’ll continue to address some of the challenges associated with each and let you know where each week brings us. We’re currently in the process of building a release schedule for the new weapon tune, and we should have details about that next week.

Join In Progress Parameters as of April 22nd, 2013

Current Join-in-Progress parameters:

  • Once a match has passed just over half of the total game time, Join-in-Progress is disabled across all game modes and playlists.
  • Rumble Pit now has the smallest Join-in-Progress window, only allowing players to join during the first few kills of a match.
  • In Slayer matches outside of Team Throwdown and Team Doubles, players will no longer join after one team has reached just over half of the score limit.
  • In King of the Hill and Oddball, players will no longer join in the second half of the game in regards to score limit.
  • In Grifball, players will no longer join single-round matches if over 3 goals have been scored by one team. We will be updating Grifball Pro to similar settings in the next update.
  • In Team Throwdown and Team Doubles, players will no longer join after a small join window during and before the first moments of a match.

Check out the latest Halo Bulletin here!

– Chief Landless

Geronimo

Halo 4 Weapon Tuning! Nerfs & Buffs! The Halo Bulletin: April 17th 2013

The Halo Bulletin: 4.17.13

Hi there, Chief Landless here, back once again with news from this weeks HaloWaypont Bulletin. Here are the highlights, but you can click here to read the entire bulletin.

April 22nd 2013 is the next update to Halo 4 and we’ll be seeing some weapons being tuned (details below) and updates to Regicide and Grifball Playlist.

Weapon Tuning – Potential Changes to Halo 4’s Sandbox.

** These are subject to change and are in no way final decisions **

BATTLE RIFLE

Buffed from a FIVE SHOT KILL to a FOUR SHOT KILL and Rate of Fire reduced

The Battle Rifle shipped as a FIVE SHOT KILL when Halo 4 released on November 6th, it was intended to be the go-to weapon for close to medium range, however the DMR was still beating this weapon at said range. To remedy this, the Battle Rifle is intended to become a FOUR SHOT KILL with a reduced Rate of Fire. This means that the Battle Rifle will now require three bursts to the body, and one shot to the head to kill.

LIGHTRIFLE

Adjusted range at which the reticule turns red to match the DMR’s

The LightRifle has been generally pushed aside by the community because of its alien-like feel and how awkward it is to shoot, however, once you begin to use it, it becomes a pretty viable weapon, and this change will make it even more viable. This change means that when you begin getting the aim assist on a player has been tweaked to match the DMR.

COVENANT CARBINE

Buffed from an EIGHT SHOT KILL to a SEVEN SHOT KILL

When Halo 4 launched, the Covenant Carbine was pushed to the side just like the LightRifle, however this time, it was because of how weak it was for the skill required to use the weapon. To remedy this, the Covenant Carbine is going to become a SEVEN SHOT KILLcompared to the prior EIGHT SHOT KILL.

ASSAULT RIFLE, STORM RIFLE AND SUPPRESSOR

All have received a damage buff and auto aim reduction

Due to the precision rifle changes, the automatic weapons became weak at CQC as the precision rifles were outshooting them. To remedy this, all of the above weapons have received a slight damage buff, alongside an auto aim reduction to make the weapons harder to use, but reward those who learn how to use them effectively.

BEAM RIFLE

Aim assist reduction

Anyone who has picked up the Beam Rifle in Halo 4 will have noticed that just not using the scope is a lot easier than scoping in, this is due to the weapons high aim assist when unscoped. This is planned to be changed so you won’t be constantly snapshotting people without putting much effort into aiming.

WARTHOG & MANTIS CHAINGUN

Both will be receiving a damage buff

Vehicles have always played a huge part in Halo, ever since Halo: Combat Evolved. However, the Warthog & Mantis currently don’t perform as well as expected in terms of their chainguns. Both of them will be tweaked to receive damage buffs to make them a lot more deadly and hopefully feared in big team gameplay.

Matchmaking Update

First, Regicide is a playlist that is long overdue for an update. While we know many of you have suggested that it be consolidated into the recently added Rumble Pit playlist, we have chosen not to do so at the moment for a few reasons. For one, not all Rumble Pit players want to play Regicide, as it is a very different game mode from Infinity Rumble and Rumble Pro. Secondly, being that it does have added scoring modifiers, we’ve decided to add additional game modes to make the playlist more fun and varied (and even a bit more chaotic), as well as change the way the scoring works a bit. Also, we’ll be removing Complex and adding the following maps from the Regicide rotation.

  • Landfall
  • Dispatch
  • Simplex
  • Scythe

The Grifball game type has been tweaked to create better balance between the weapons. Grifball and Grifball Pro now have identical shield, damage, damage resistance and radar settings. Grifball will continue to have one continuous round with auto-pickup turned on, while Grifball Pro will still have five individual rounds with auto-pickup turned off.

Griffball maps have also been tweaked based on errors or flaws experienced and reported.

– Chief Landless

Geronimo!