Halo 2 is probably one of my favourite games of all time. I don’t love it because it was an incredible shooter, or because it was one of the biggest games on Xbox, or even because it continued the epic story from the original game. I love it because my best friend and I spent hundreds of hours playing and laughing at each other, about stories we made up in the game, and about things we were doing as we completed it in co-op for the fiftieth time. Well now something has been shared that brings me right back to those days, and actually sheds a little light on how a game’s cinematics used to take shape.
Marcus Lehto, the self-proclaimed father of Master Chief, was cleaning out his attic recently and came across a hard drive. On that hard drive he found a file that is actually an early version of one of the first Halo 2 cinematics, and he shared it on Twitter so we can all gawp and then laugh at how bad it is. Check out the Tweet below and read on for more details.
I found all the old previs cinematics for Halo 2 on an old hard drive in my attic. Fun to see these in a rough state. pic.twitter.com/1o4CyId98U
— Marcus Lehto (@game_fabricator) January 5, 2020
You’d expect all the characters to be faceless messes, which they are in this video, but what I was not prepared for was the huge JPG file sitting in space that represents the Halo ring in the game. That part made me pause as I got my laughing under control, as well as the point where a random character model is defined as Avery Johnson by the extremely rough temporary in-game cigar. Honestly, if I was making games then they’d get delayed all the time because of all the jokes I’d make about these early development models.
Of course this video does nothing to help us with our burning need to see more Halo Infinite, but what it does do is give us a look at where the Halo series has come from. Later Halo games have definitely seen the series lose its way a little, but 343 Industries is bringing things back to basics as they move forward with their entries. I won’t focus too much on that game here though, because Lehto isn’t working on it, and he’s the reason that we have this video.
Marcus Lehto is currently working on Disintegration, an extremely interesting game that’s very likely to launch across both the current and next generation of consoles. The game sees players commanding other units as well as fighting against them by themselves, providing a different interaction for players in shooters that hasn’t really been utilised on this scale in a long time. I’m really excited to see where Disintegration takes players, and what that universe looks like, but until then at least I have this amazing Halo 2 video.