Everything you need to know about the new Halo game.
343 Industries has just announced a new twin-stick shooter set in the Halo universe, Halo: Spartan Assault, designed for Windows 8 mobiles, tablets and PCs. Here's everything you need to know about this new Halo game, based on a presentation and interview session held at a recent reveal event in London.
What sort of game is Halo: Spartan Assault?
Halo: Spartan Assault is a twin-stick shooter, similar in gameplay mechanics to titles such as Geometry Wars.
What platforms will Halo: Spartan Assault be available on?
Halo: Spartan Assault will be available for Windows 8 phones, tablets and PCs at launch.
Who is developing Halo: Spartan Assault?
The project is a collaboration between the publishing arm of 343 Industries, and a Dutch developer called Vanguard Games.
Can I use an Xbox 360 controller for Halo: Spartan Assault?
Yes, although use of the Xbox 360 controller is limited to the Windows 8 PC version of the game. This control method won't be available immediately at launch, however. Until 360 controller functionality is patched in a couple of weeks after launch, PC players will need to use a keyboard and mouse.
How will the controls of Halo: Spartan Assault work on a touchscreen?
The team went through a number of control revisions before settling on the adaptive, twin-stick controls of the game. You'll use a left virtual stick to steer your units, while firing is controlled via a virtual stick on the right-hand side of the screen.
These virtual sticks aren't fixed in position on the screen, however. Instead, the game will adapt to where your thumbs happen to be, allowing a little more freedom in movement as your hands naturally change position around the screen during play.
When will Halo: Spartan Assault be released?
The game is scheduled to be released in July 2013.
How will Halo: Spartan Assault tie into the Halo universe?
343 Industries was keen to stress that the game plays an important part in the Halo universe. The Spartan Assault game represents an interface tool, given to Spartans so that they can hone their battle skills during non-combat downtime.
How will Spartan Assault tie into Halo 4?
As well as being a standalone game in its own right, players will be able to unlock rewards in Halo 4 by playing the game - medals, achievements, and so on.
Will Halo: Spartan Assault offer the same freedom as other Halo games?
While Spartan Assault isn't a first-person shooter, you will have the same sandbox experience that you've come to expect from other games in the Halo universe. You'll be able to jump into vehicles that you come across, or grab any weapons that your defeated enemies drop.
What customization options will there be in Halo: Spartan Assault?
Players will be able to customize their loadout before entering combat. You'll be able to customize your primary weapon and secondary weapon, for example. The game will also feature armor abilities that have never been featured in Halo before, as well as new weapons.
Will there be AI companions in Halo: Spartan Assault?
Yes. A squad of marines will follow you during combat, and act independently of your own actions.
What kind of missions will there be in Halo: Spartan Assault?
There will be a wide variety of mission types in the game, including convoy protection, escort, survival, and seek-and-destroy missions.
How many missions are there in Halo: Spartan Assault?
There will be 25 missions available at launch, with around seven to eight different mission types spread throughout the campaign. The game will support short-burst, as well as long-play game sessions.
How long will it take to complete Halo: Spartan Assault?
The team believe it will take around 2 hours to complete the entire game, however challenges will provide considerable replay value.
Will there be multiplayer in Halo: Spartan Assault?
At launch, the game will only support singleplayer gameplay. It was suggested, however, that multiplayer gameplay may make an appearance at some point after launch.
Will my Windows 8 phone run Halo: Spartan Assault?
Regardless of your phone's specification, 343 have stated that if your phone is capable of running Windows 8, then it is capable of running Spartan Assault.
Will Halo: Spartan Assault be released for iPhone, iPad or Android devices?
During the presentation, 343 was keen to stress that the game was optimized for Windows 8 devices. The possibility of the game appearing on other platforms wasn't explicitly ruled out, but for now the game remains a purely Windows 8 experience.
Will game progress in Halo: Spartan Assault be saved between devices?
Players will be able to pick up and carry on their game progress from any Windows 8 device. If you make progress in the PC version, you'll be able to pick up where you left off on your Windows 8 tablet, for example.
Will there be vehicles in Halo: Spartan Assault?
Yes, although as the game is delivered from a top-down perspective, you shouldn't expect airborne vehicles to make an appearance. Fan-favorite ground vehicles are expected to be a part of the game, however. You'll be able to jack any vehicles you come across, just as you can steal weapons that drop from enemies.
How much will Halo: Spartan Assault cost?
The game will be released for $6.99 in the United States, while global pricing is still to be decided.
Will there be in-app purchases in Halo: Spartan Assault?
Yes, although the exact pricing has yet to be confirmed at the time of publishing this FAQ. Players will be able to grind out game credits in order to buy new weapons, upgrades, Spartan abilities, and so on. Alternatively, you'll be able to buy these credits from an in-app purchase store.