While gamers enjoy the grandeur that is Halo 5: Guardians, little do they know that the game was almost never made. It’s a little known fact that Microsoft was ready to retire the Halo Franchise had 343 Industries boss Bonnie Ross not taken it over.
After the original developer of Halo, Bungie, left the IP to create Destiny
, the general attitude at Microsoft was that of pessimism, with Ross noting that the Redmond-based giant was ready to bring an end to the sci-fi FPS series after one or two more games.
Recalling her efforts to reinvigorate the Halo franchise in an interview with Bloomberg
, she said:
“People felt like, Let’s get another Halo or two out, and it’s the end of the franchise. The thing I asked for was: If I take it over, I want to be George Lucas. I want to own everything, and I want to do things differently.”
Here's an even more unsavory perspective on just how close Halo 5
was from not being made: In the time between Halo 4
-- not factoring in small scale projects like Spartan Assault
and the Master Chief Collection
-- Microsoft considered putting the wraps on the perennial series. But fortunately for Halo
fans, the launch of the latest installment offers it a new lease on life, with Xbox boss Phil Spencer welcoming it with wide open arms:
“It’s easy to say that an Xbox generation never really starts until you have a purpose-built Halo game, and this is Halo 5 from the ground up for Xbox One launching. It’s an important milestone for us with Xbox One. The game looks great, feels great, 60 frames per second and it feels for smooth when I’m playing.”
He’s not kidding -- Halo 5
has garnered great reviews across the board and will undoubtedly be a big hit for the Xbox One. However, it’s sobering to think it almost didn’t exist.