Hit video game franchise Halo have announced a new edition that will veer away from its traditional home of the Xbox, but not too far, with all current-generation Windows operating systems set to be able to host Halo: Spartan Assault.
The Microsoft-owned platforms will take the new title as a downloadable app or individual release depending on product, with Windows Phone 8 (smartphones) and Windows 8 (PC & tablet computers) being the operating systems on which the game can be played as of July.
Developed by 343 Industries, Spartan Assault will see players take part in a ‘top-down third-person shooter’ as opposed to the series’ regular first-person format, and offers 25 short-length ‘unique levels’ in a ‘triple-A mobile experience’. The title, which will focus story-wise on Halo 4 character ‘Sarah Palmer’ and play in an ‘adaptive twin-stick’ style similar to that of classic top-down game Smash TV, is also set to incorporate ‘leaderboard support’ and integration with Halo 4‘s ‘medal’ rewards.
Executive producer Dan Ayoub summarised: “We’ve built the game for simplicity. We’ve spent a tremendous amount of time on the controls for this game, so it’s something that people can jump in and play right away. As you play through the game, you’re going to achieve credits that you can use to unlock new abilities and weapons. We’re going to have new Spartan abilities and weapons that you’ve never seen before.”
He added of additional features such as individual and weekly ‘challenges’ to complete, and how new gameplay mechanics will feature as a lead attraction of the release: “[Our main goal for this game was] to take Halo out of the living room. Halo’s obviously been an experience enjoyed by tens of millions of people throughout the years, but we wanted you to be able to have a new way to play it and basically take that experience out of the living room. We wanted to innovate on [mobile platforms]. Halo has always been a platform definer. It’s always been something that’s pushed the platform. We wanted to do that again on mobile platforms. We wanted people to say, ‘Wow, how did they do that? The game looks amazing and sounds amazing. It looks like you’re playing a console experience on mobile’.”
While potential Xbox One title Halo 5, rumoured for an E3 reveal by Microsoft next week, is set to claim all future limelight for the franchise until it is released, will its mobile counterpart manage to make an impression on its chosen mediums?