Microsoft has confirmed that Halo 5, now known officially as Halo 5: Guardians, will not be released on Xbox One until fall 2015, but has once again reiterated that the Halo "journey" will continue this year.
"Making a Halo game that runs at 60 frames per second, on dedicated servers, with the scope, features, and scale we’ve been dreaming of for more than a decade, is non-trivial," said 343 Industries general manager Bonnie Ross. "It’s a task that we, at 343 Industries, are taking very seriously to ensure we deliver the Halo game that fans deserve, and a game that is built from the ground up for Xbox One."
"Halo 5: Guardians is a bigger effort than Halo 4," continued Ross. "That applies to the content and scope of the game, as well as the technology in what’s now a brand new and more powerful engine. Certainly there are some core elements carried over from prior games, but we’ve invested a huge effort in retooling our tech to take full advantage of the Xbox One’s hardware and ecosystem to create worlds and experiences worthy of next-gen."
Actual details about Halo 5 are still scarce: a lavish CG trailer was shown off at last year's E3, and we've not heard anything official about the project until now. Ross says that "it’s a game that will hopefully demonstrate the talent, learnings and abilities of the 343 Industries team. A game that will incorporate the things we learned from Halo 4 about technology, aesthetics, performance and scale--and perhaps more importantly, understanding and embracing a community of gamers who love what lies at the heart of this game, and the limitless potential of the Halo universe."
Halo 4, released on Xbox 360 in 2012, was the first entirely new Halo title to be released by 343 Industries, the studio founded by Microsoft to take over development of the franchise after original developer Bungie upped sticks and left to create Destiny. Halo 4 was billed as the first part of the "Reclaimer" saga and presumably will lead directly into the events of Halo 5.
Ross also added that the Halo television series, announced alongside the Xbox One itself last year, will also launch in fall 2015. Might it be connected in some way to the events of Halo 5? Ross says it will both "stand alone" from but simultaneously "complement" the game.
But with no Halo 5 and no Halo TV series, what can we expect for this year? Rumours of a Halo 2 Anniversary Edition have been circulating for a while now, and 343 Industries general manager Bonnie Ross has said that the Halo journey "begins in 2014 with a giant leap, rather than one small step."
Whatever the team is cooking up for this year, Ross confirmed it will be shown at Microsoft's E3 2014 press conference on June 9.