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This week’s news come in the form of tweets and forum posts from Creative Director, Josh Holmes. Late last week, Josh took to Twitter to answer some of the community’s questions regarding Halo 5, some immediate, some to be expanded upon come E3 and leading up to launch. He also replied to a user over on the Team Beyond forums regarding Breakout and bit team play in Halo 5.
The Mysteries of Halo 5: Guardians continues to unravel in the latest episode of Hunt the Truth, but also in another image puzzle this past weekend. After a mysterious email was sent to Australians, people everywhere began trying to solve a puzzle that eventually lead to the Halo 5 cover art for the game. The art reveals what appears to be Blue Team, Locke’s team with a couple of familiar Spartans, Chief and Locke in their infamous standoff, and Sanghelios. Ben Giraud’s trip to ONI had it’s own twists with a one-on-one interview with Franklin Mendez, the one who trained John and the rest of the Spartan IIs. Ben’s struggle with the truth would get the better of him and get him fired shortly after, only to be left at home with a decision to follow through on the job, or turn tail and spill the beans. After many recommendations, we’re honored to have Toa Freak on as our special guest.
The latest Master Chief Collection patch is out and this is another big one addressing Halo 3 forge and ranks coming to other playlists. In the patch notes, we got word that the Relic remake and Halo 3: ODST’s campaign will join the collection alongside next month’s content update. On the Halo 5 hype train, a new GameStop trailer announced Spartan Locke’s exclusive HUNTER class armor as a pre-order bonus for those buying from GameStop. The trailer itself has some interesting moments showcasing the versatility of Spartan Abilities coming to Halo 5: Guardians along with some other hints at what we’ll find in the campaign later in October. Our special guests this week are Tyboy and TwiztedShotz from Rectify Gaming.
Our next episode of Hunt the Truth with Ben Giraud, we see desperate attempts to make sense of what the interviews have been saying about Chief’s true past, while fretting about job security for this story. Ben’s gone from having the brunt work done for him with ONI piling on interviews for him to make a great story, to contradicting every lead given to him with his own contacts, even entertaining the audience of Mashak Maradi, the truther who has kept leaving him messages throughout this whole campaign. On his way back to Earth after being called back by Sully, he confides in a colleague of his, Petra Janecek on what he has found before heading to ONI HQ. We are joined by Drew Freeman from Podcast Evolved for this week’s discussion.
Last week, GrifballHub launched their Grifball at RTX Kickstarter. The last two years, they’ve fundraised their booth for Grifball presence on the show floor with free swag and playable Halo. This year, they’re looking to do the same thing with some new reward items you can only get through funding the project. Help support the Halo community and if you’re there in Austin this August, drop by the booth and say, “Hi!”
On the news front this week, Halo: Spartan Strike is now out on Windows 8, Steam and iOS, for $5.99. The next Halo MCC patch is due this week after passing Xbox certification and addresses ranking fixes including deployment to other playlists, new penalties and monitoring for quitting and betrayals, and updated Halo 3 Forge to include forging game type specific modes.
Richard Simms, better known as TheSimms is a competitive Halo commentator heralding from the UK. Simms started playing Halo competitively during Halo 2 and commentating during Halo 4. We had the pleasure of having him cast during his US debut at the HCS Season One Grand Finals last month at Pax East 2015. With competitive Halo making a firm comeback, we’re happy to have some overseas talent recognized and holding his own alongside veteran commentators. We’re privileged to have the opportunity to talk with Simms about his competitive past, his ease into the commentator seat, his thoughts on the Halo Championship Series and what his Halo 5 caster/streamer wishes are.
As Benjamin Giraud digs deeper into John’s past, the more the truth breaks into the fabricated story laid out by ONI and the UNSC. What was supposed to be an easy assignment now has Ben questioning everything he’s learned about John’s past. As he so eloquently puts it in his latest episode, “Do glassed people have bad records?” Riding on the edges of any leads he can get to invalidate Ellie’s stories of John as a kid and the facts at play about his family and Elysium City, Ben takes huge risks going outside approved interviews, relying on his own sources. One ONI plant finally snaps under the pressure from Ben, but having the conversation take place over Waypoint could have jeopardized his investigation.
Competitive Halo has been a cornerstone of the Halo Franchise ever since Halo: CE, getting its start with Major League Gaming and now with the Halo Championship Series. Along with 343 Industries and Twitch, ESL is helping spearhead the efforts behind the competitive league providing the ladder structure or team seeds, the platform for online and LAN tournaments and professional broadcasting setups for premiere events in the league. We had the privilege to talk about HCS Season One with Timo Karamustafa, Project Manager on Halo and Joshua Gray, Creative Producer at ESL. Season One was a huge success and learning about the hard work and effort behind putting such a league together is something that should appeal to those competitive taste buds. Come join us as Timo and Josh walk through the challenges of the first season, feedback from the community, and what’s to look forward to with HCS Season Two!
Benjamin Giraud’s search for the truth behind Master Chief continues as he wrestles with some contradictory evidence he mentioned in his previous podcast. For this week’s episode, he seemingly finds a fix to the mysterious death record stating John had died at the age of six. Additional interviews set up by ONI for Ben continue to portray this kid who rose up from nothing to join the cause of the UNSC becoming the great hero he was today. The small quick fix from Sully however, wasn’t enough as one of John’s oldest friends Katrina provides Ben with vivid details of John as a kid and of his death. Also on the contrary was the fact that John’s parents were still alive when they were believed to be dead. ONI is trying to feed Ben the same lies they’ve propagated to the masses, but journalistic integrity may get the better of him as he continues to chase the loose threads of this story.
A lull in the news can only mean one thing: tangent city, or at least a few strung together cohesive conversations still on the subject of Halo. With a few things to dabble in the Hunt the Truth ARG, we’re left with room to talk about Chief’s future in the Halo franchise and sort through our listener emails.