The time has finally come, Halo: The Master Chief Collection launches on the Xbox One today (for North America at least). 343 Industries has gathered together and cleaned up Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary, heavily upgraded Halo 2 Anniversary, and tweaked Halo 3, and Halo 4, in what will surely be, the definitive Halo collection, all on one disc.
The collection focuses entirely on the journeys of Master Chief. That is to say that other Halo titles such as Halo: Reach and Halo Wars are absent from the collection, which arrives in North America on Nov 11, Belgium will be getting it one day later on the 12, Japan on the 13, and France on the 14.
From the very beginning the collection opens itself up. All campaigns allow for selecting of specific chapters without needing to play the game first. This will definitely cause a sigh of relief in many fans that wish to test out the updated graphics on some classic campaign chapters. Players that wish to dive into the most recent game in the series can easily watch all of the scenes within the theater mode to catch up on the story. The online multiplayer features specific playlists that even mix and match across games.
All games will have dedicated playlists that include game types and a total of more than 100 maps. The only game in the collection that will not have a dedicated playlist at launch is the first Halo. 343 Industries intended to have a dedicated playlist for the first Halo, but had to cancel last-minute, they claim they will have the playlist up as soon as possible, however, that might be harder than expected because the standard playlists are having difficulty finding other players.
Those that preordered the collection at Gamestop will get an in-game bandanna that gives the player unlimited ammo and grenades during the Halo 2 Campaign. Anyone that preorders from Best Buy gets a multiplayer map guide as well as a Grunt Funeral Skull, which is similar to the Grunt Birthday Party Skull except this one has the player’s head explode with confetti when killed.
The collection comes with the beta for Halo 5: Guardians. However, the beta does not begin until December 29. but will run through January 18. Nightfall is a digital feature that will release episodes over five weeks. Nightfall can be streamed from the game and links Halo 4 to Halo 5: Guardians. There is a day one update that is a massive 15 gb download. The update is mandatory for any playing online. Also, if the digital version of the game has been purchased it is possible to begin the download before the moment of release.
The most spectacular title on the collection for many will be Halo 2 as it got the biggest improvements across the board. Nothing will be changed about Halo 2, however, things will be added. Prologue and Epilogue scenes have been added as well as extra terminals, which tie the game in more with Halo 5: Guardians. As a note, it is possible to toggle between the old graphics and new graphics just like in the Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary. As an extra bonus, six Halo 2 maps have been completely redone.
It may seem like a cash grab being so close to the holidays, but Halo: The Master Chief Collection does a spectacular job of bringing back previous legends, dressing them up all nice and pretty, and creating dedicated playlists to give the online gamers a plethora of different games and maps to enjoy. The collection comes exclusively to the Xbox One November 11.