Halo 5 Story Was A Huge Disappointment For Fans, Admits 343 Industries
Halo 5 Cortana
(Last Updated On: April 27, 2017)

One of the stories that gained us quite a bit of traction back in 2015 was talking about how much people hated Halo 5’s story. It wasn’t that the story was absolutely dreadful, but it was that there were a lot of inconsistencies and shallow forms of storytelling in place of what gamers had come to expect from the Halo franchise when the true creators of the series, Bungie, was at the helm. Well, the heads at 343 have acknowledged that the story was pretty disappointing for most die-hard fans who came for Master Chief but got the sub-par Osiris Team instead.

WCCF Tech quoted a segment from an interview that 343 studio head Kiki Wolfkill (which is one of the most badass names I’ve ever heard in my life) and franchise manager Frank O’Connor had with GamesTM Magazine.

O’Connor explained that gamers came for one thing – based on the excellent marketing campaign for Halo 5: Guardians – but they ended up with something else… something they didn’t find themselves all to fond of. O’Connor stated…

“We definitely marketed in a way that we hoped was going to bring surprise, but for some fans and certainly fans of Master Chief, it was a huge disappointment because they wanted more Chief.”

I feel this is a bit of side-step from some of the complaints about Halo 5. It wasn’t just that they wanted Chief, it was that the missions Chief and Blue Team were in were crap. They had to keep fighting that boring piece of crap known as the Warden… over, and over, and over again. I don’t mind repeatedly fighting the same boss, but he better be darn interesting to warrant repeatedly having to beat the crap out of him for eight hours. The Warden was not interesting in the least bit.

The other issue was with Osiris… as O’Connor reluctantly admits, people loved Blue Team but only barely liked Osiris…

“They loved Blue Team, they liked Osiris, but they wanted Chief. And that has been a big learning. […]“

 

“[…] But people have become attached to him over the last fifteen years and they’ve started to sort of fill in the gaps that the character deliberately has for gameplay reasons with a genuine emotional attachment. We certainly underestimated that with Halo 5.”

I even feel as if 343 failed in representing Blue Team properly. In the books, we grew up with John, Sam, Kelly, Fred and Linda. Having Fred, Linda and Kelly reduced to little more than mannequins who would only occasionally make quips throughout the journey seemed like a real disservice to how they were portrayed in the books.

I was waiting for them to properly give them the characterizations that were so properly highlighted in the novels… but it never came.

Halo 5 Ending

Worse yet, 343 had an opportunity to flesh out Lock’s Osiris squad. However, they failed there. Only Buck, an alum from Halo: Reach and Halo: ODST, showed any notable traits of personality. Locke, the leader of the team, acted more stiff than a cardboard cutout. Had he died, there would have been nothing lost either narratively or in terms of characterization, since he didn’t really have much of a character.

Even if they add more of Master Chief in Halo 6 that won’t fix the problem with the story and characters. You need better storytelling vehicles and more honest and mature characterizations to help put the series back in line to where it was previously.

Whether or not 343 Industries has the talent to pull that off with Halo 6 remains to be seen.


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Billy has been rustling Jimmies for years covering video games, technology and digital trends within the electronics entertainment space. The GJP cried and their tears became his milkshake. Need to get in touch? Try the Contact Page.

  • MusouTensei

    5 was crap and the last Halo or me.

  • vr

    Here’s a hint “PUT YOUR GAMES ON PC”

    • MusouTensei

      How exactly would make that Halo 5 better?

      • Disqusted

        Mods, I guess. A lot of mods.

  • Salt Miner

    This is what happens when Leftists idiots like Bonnie Ross pushes the Social Justice narrative into gaming.

    https://archive.is/RxdEw

  • Salt Miner

    This is what happens when Leftists idiots like Bonnie Ross pushes the Social Justice narrative into gaming.

    https://archive.is/RxdEw

    • lucben999

      When Bonnie Ross took over Microsoft Corp.’s biggest video-game franchise, she inherited a Halo 4 script riddled with one-dimensional female characters who existed mainly as villains to be slain by the male protagonist.

      She ripped that version up and worked with a cadre of writers and designers to create a world with stronger women. It’s a delicate balancing act faced by many publishers seeking to boost sales: making tweaks to reach a bigger audience that includes women without alienating the mostly male hardcore base.

      I guess in their rush for self-rigtheous political wankey they forgot to write a good story along the way.

      • Salt Miner

        Not forgotten, more like ignored. Since writing a good story without catering to a loud-mouth minority and squeezing some leftist ideology into gaming isn’t something taught in Social Justice 101.

  • Laytonaster

    The only good thing about Osiris was Buck. But, when you’re Nathan Fillion, that’s a given.

  • Laytonaster

    The only good thing about Osiris was Buck. But, when you’re Nathan Fillion, that’s a given.

    • ItEotWaWKI

      Other than him not being John-117, (and Guardians basically being Halo 2’s Arbiter syndrome all over again), I really don’t get everyone’s issue with Locke in specific. He’s fine. He’s exactly what I’d expect from someone married to the UNSC, and the fact that he’s ex-ONI and still has a conscience IS some form of character depth.

      On the other hand, we have Vale… When she gushed about how progressive Thel (Arbiter) and his Elites are I cringed so hard I threw my back out…

      https://youtu.be/9HDzytOqCxs?t=166

      The thing I probably hate most about the 343 Halo’s, storywise, (and there’s ALOT I hate about the 343 Halo plots/writing), are the Spartan IVs. It pisses all over the extremely dark grey morality and “ends justify the means” nature of both the Spartan II and III programs. I found it especially galling when a S4 somehow went toe to toe against a S2 and did not get decisively wrecked…

      • He’s exactly what I’d expect from someone married to the UNSC, and the fact that he’s ex-ONI and still has a conscience IS some form of character depth.

        Except his character served no purpose in furthering the tension between Chief, ONI and the UNSC, which leads to the question: What’s the purpose of his character then?

        I found it especially galling when a S4 somehow went toe to toe against a S2 and did not get decisively wrecked..

        I was expecting more gun-fu in that scene and a lot more counter-catching, similar to the CQC fights in Metal Gear, as well as showing a difference in style based on their generational differences in combat prowess, but that didn’t happen at all.

    • Richard

      I’m going to say it. I don’t see the appeal of Nathan Fillion. Granted, every time I hear his name these days, all I hear is “Solar Freaking Roadway”. He just seems to be a sad gimmick to sell expensive useless crap.

      • Fillion was the only spark of life on Osiris, though. Whether you love him or hate him, he was the only one with real personality. Everybody else on Osiris was either forgettable or wooden.

  • MONAD

    Well, at least 343 actually ACKNOWLEDGES where they failed. I think they realized they dropped the ball with Halo 5. Six will either redeem them, or it will fail the studio so bad someone else has to take over the franchise.

  • MONAD

    Well, at least 343 actually ACKNOWLEDGES where they failed. I think they realized they dropped the ball with Halo 5. Six will either redeem them, or it will fail the studio so bad someone else has to take over the franchise.

  • SevTheBear

    MS is playing it to safe + whoever wrote H5 either had very little time to write the plot and characters or didn’t knew what to do with it. There is plenty of possibilities with the HALO universe. but they need to listen to the fans, take chances and… for the love of fuck don’t go pure PG13 or SJW with the series.

  • Disqusted

    Is this the game where they tried to turn Cortana into a strong, independent female or something? Would explain a lot.

    • SevTheBear

      From what I have heard it’s just boring, short and badly written. They have WAAAAY to much focus on the extreme boring Lock and his team. in other words, MS was lazy and thought the name itself and it’s MP was enough.

      • They were trying to turn Locke into a hero. They thought they could hit two birds with one stone: diversity and creating a new hero.

        They failed.

        Locke was boring, lame and poorly characterized. He would have been FAAAAR more interesting as a risk aversion contractor for ONI, cleaning up their messes and working with Osiris under the guise of taking out Chief. There would have been ample room and opportunity to turn him into a hero.

        Also it would have made sense if you played as Locke but he wasn’t the leader of Osiris. He should have been undermining the other team members’ attempts to bring in Chief safely, which eventually results in him pulling a stunt that sees him and Chief battling one-on-one against the orders of the Osiris team leader.

        Now THAT would have been intense and cool to see play out, especially with the unpredictable nature of what would happen if Chief and Locke ever met again.

        But instead they had one of the lamest buddy-up moments and one of the lamest boss fights ever. It was just so lame.

        • Laytonaster

          It’s a little ironic that Osiris, which didn’t undergo as much severe mental conditioning as the Spartan-2’s, had so much less personality than Blue Team.

        • Laytonaster

          It’s a little ironic that Osiris, which didn’t undergo as much severe mental conditioning as the Spartan-2’s, had so much less personality than Blue Team.

        • Disqusted

          The only Locke I know is the one in Final Fantasy 6!

  • Still haven’t forgiven them for ruining Cortana.

    • Ghost

      I know what you mean. There’s not even point in trying to jerk it to her anymore.

    • Send in the Killer Clowns

      Was Halo 5 the one where they turned her into some kind of crazy ex-girlfriend that wants to keep you (John) all to herself for the next couple thousand years? God damn, I loved and hated that so fucking much (mostly hating because why the fuck).
      First they take her away in Halo 3 which is just lonely without someone telling you shit to do the whole game, then they go all “Chief is getting old and retarded in the head for keeping her” in Halo 4, and now this shit with the added on bonus of killing her off in the end if I’m remembering that correctly.

  • Gorgon

    >New installment of a AAA franchise was a huge disappointment

    I see this way too often nowadays. And most times it’s not even because the devs didn’t care, but out of either executive meddling, sheer incompetence or both.

    • Wisdomcube2000

      lol from what I’ve noticed, it is almost always both.

      Back on topic, these devs are at strike two for me in terms of killing the series. Hope they can get their collective sh!t together, but given how safe MS plays it nowadays, it is highly unlikely that we will get anything beyond another “eh” game with the Halo brand propping it up.

  • Ghost

    Nah, Halo is fucked. I thought people were too harsh on 343 after Halo 4, but two fuck up’s in a row? And the second being even worse?!?! Nope. I’m done. Fuck em. I’m still having a blast with GTA 5. Still, need to find some more games to stream though.