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Microsoft's Spencer Discusses Halo Release Timing

Microsoft Game Studios Vice President Phil Spencer suggested in an interview published today that the three years separating major Halo releases in the past was "probably not frequent enough."
Microsoft Game Studios Vice President Phil Spencer suggested in an interview published today that the three years separating major Halo releases in the past was "probably not frequent enough." Speaking to IGN, Spencer said that while there's "no explicit strategy that says we're to ship a Halo game every year," long gaps between major releases are not desirable either. "The percentage of players who are playing Reach that were I'll say not old enough to play Halo at the time, 10 years is a long time between launches," Spencer said. "We definitely think about a more persistent Halo engagement for customers and not going dark for two years, and Live helps obviously with multiplayer to keep people engaged." That said, Spencer also suggested that the regimented annual release schedule favored by some other major franchises might not be ideal for Halo. "It's not, 'hey, every November 6 or whatever we have to ship a game and build a production plan around that,' he said. "We want to do things that make sense as a first party." He continued: "We have some unique challenges and opportunities with Halo because it is a story based game built around a certain set of characters, which is a bit different than what they do with Call of Duty. Not better or worse, it's just different." The Halo franchise has seen four major releases in the last four years: 2007's Halo 3, 2009's Halo Wars and Halo 3: ODST and last Tuesday's launch of Halo: Reach, the last title in the franchise developed by Bungie.

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