A Halo: Combat Evolved developer has revealed that the game was originally supposed to have an open-world environment.
As reported by PCGamesN, Marcus Lehto – the art director of the first Halo game – recently took to Twitter to talk to fans about the game, as well as the latest edition in the franchise, Halo: Infinite.
“Hate off to my friends at 343,” Lehto said. “#HaloInfinite campaign brings back the magic of Halo. Really enjoying my time back with the Chief!”
In another interaction, a fan asked the developer if the open-world aspect of Halo Infinite is something he wished could have been done in Combat Evolved. To this, Lehto said:
“Yes absolutely. When building the first demo the intent then was to make it open world. Closest we got was The Silent Cartographer level.”
Yes absolutely. When building the first demo the intent then was to make it open world. Closest we got was The Silent Cartographer level.
— Marcus Lehto (@game_fabricator) January 3, 2022
According to another developer in the Twitter thread, Paul Russel, Combat Evolved only had 12 people working on the game and he remembers thinking “how the heck are we gonna pull this off?”
Lehto continued, saying, “Yes, in the early development stage before MS bought Bungie and moved us all from Chicago to Seattle.”
Elsewhere, Halo: Combat Evolved originally didn’t have a single-player campaign at first. A programmer who worked on the title – Stefan Sinclair – said that the first Halo was going to be multiplayer-only. The game was planned to launch as a push for the Xbox Live service, not just as a console exclusive.
In other news, Aaron Linde, one of the lead writers behind Halo Infinite, announced that he is leaving 343 Industries. The developer will be moving on to work at Riot Games.
In NME’s five-star Halo Infinite review, Jake Tucker said the game “feels as immediately compelling and necessary as Bungie’s original games, and is a shining beacon in a year that has felt quite underwhelming in the AAA space.”