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Halo 6 to put the spotlight back on Master Chief after Halo 5 backlash

Halo 5: Guardians drew quite a bit of fire over its relative lack of action from the franchise's signature protagonist, Master Chief. In a new interview with GamesTM magazine (via Eurogamer), Halo director Frank O'Connor has acknowledged the problem alongside the promise of more Master Chief in Halo 6.

Speaking on Halo 5, O'Connor said:

We definitely marketed [Halo 5] in a way that we hoped was going to bring surprise, but for some fans and certainly fans of Master Chief, it was a huge disappointment because they wanted more Chief. And that has been a big learning.

Turning towards Halo 6, O'Connor hints that the iconic Master Chief will play a much more prominent role in the story:

The volume of 'give us more Chief' at the end of Halo 5 was significant and so I think if anything he's slightly more important now than he has ever been, certainly to our franchise. Instead of focusing on bringing new characters into the world and expanding the playable characters we've sort of shifted the focus a little bit to making the world a little bit more realistic and compelling and, I would say, more fun for players who get to inhabit the Chief in the future, pretty much as they demanded.

Halo 6 currently doesn't have a release date, an O'Connor indicated it won't come this year, confirming that 343 doesn't have a triple-A game coming out this holiday. That said, it's entirely possible we could still see an announcement or teaser before the year is out. Either way, it sounds like fans of Master Chief have a lot to look forward to.

Dan Thorp-Lancaster is the Editor in Chief for Windows Central. He began working with Windows Central as a news writer in 2014 and is obsessed with tech of all sorts. You can follow Dan on Twitter @DthorpL and Instagram @heyitsdtl. Got a hot tip? Send it to daniel.thorp-lancaster@futurenet.com.

52 Comments
  • Yes! Great news for Halo fans!
  • It's as if they don't remember halo 2's campaign
  • I love that ❤
  • Is it me, or did that second quote sound almost.... Snotty? "Like, well, I guess you guys want this, so we'll give it to you, even though my idea was better. SIGH!" Is that just how I read it?
  • Halo 5 was terrible.
  • Halo 5 was far from terrible brotha.
  • Halo 5 was worse than 4 . Both were garbage. Especially removing split multiplayer and making the game so much like call of duty. REACH is still and will always be the best halo, especially for guys night on the couch . Playing multiplayer with buddies! 343 sucks
  • Calls Halo 4 and 5 "garbage" for being "so much like Call of Duty" and says 343 sucks for doing that, then praises Reach as the best Halo even though Reach, a non-343 game, was the first Halo that started emulating Call of Duty...
  • It was bare minimum and the multiplayer was great. Well balanced.. Not this ordinance garbage and micro transactions halo 5 has.... Pointless to argue with you, ive said my peace to halo...
  • The thing with these "XB fans" is that there is a need to always praise the latest version of MS games. So many of these guys have to say i343's Halos were the best because right now, they are the ones making them and they want to build hype and excitement around the latest games not point out the flaws of these latests games. Many praised the story, microtransactions and even the absence of split-screen.
  • Jetpack broke all maps and flow and gave an unfair advantage for those using it. And no, i did not want to change my button layout from bumper jumper just to use an overpowered armor ability. The rate of reticule expansion from rapid fire on the DMR was horrendous. Not to mention, the story conflicted with the Halo books. Reach had potential, that got shafted due to Bungie handing the title over not that long after release. Was Reach a bad game, no, but it had game mechanics that pushed a large amount of the community away to include esports which im not that big on anyway.
  • You do realise that 343 is made up of all the Bungie team that wanted to continue working on Halo rather than go on to work on Destiny, right? You think Bungie would have done better, having lost the passionate about Halo employees and left with the ones that wanted to make something else. As far as I'm concerned, the Halo series is on a great path currently. Introducing new characters and expanding the franchise rather than just cantering around one person is great. It's all these vocal minorities that are ruining it for everyone else. They are the cancer of the gaming community that will ultimately destroy it. Devs will be sick of it, it doesn't attract any new gamers, just pushes them away from the toxic community. It's supposed to be that the average age of gamers is late 20's, but they all act like 12 year olds.
  • Wow opinionated much? Just so you know I'm part of the cancer and proud of it! :) Have a wonderful day!
  • Halo 5 had awesome MP but campaign was meh. Huge letdown plotwise based on viral marketing, commercials, and Hunt the Truth.
  • I do hope the Halo 6 campaign is not exclusively Master Chief. I enjoyed playing as Locke, but my criticism revolves around the mere three levels to play as Chief. Make it more equal or shift more towards Chief, but I'm fine with Fireteam Osiris as long as it is balanced.
  • I'm fine with it as long as they ditch the whole squad mechanic and the revives. It makes sense for Osiris, made no sense for the Chief.
  • I remember watching Luke Cage on Netflix and trying to remember where else I knew that actor from. Then finally dawned on me, it was Spartan Locke! Amazing how I recognize actors from games now, like Simon on Walking Dead/Trevor from GTA V. Came a long way graphically since pong!
  • Splitscreen!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!! or im not buying it!
  • This! And that lack of LAN support was quite a disappointment!
  • Amen
  • The lack of focus in Master Chief was not the main problem in the HALO 5 campaign. I have no problem with team Osyris concept, but the characters were too shallow. They hired some good actors and gave them terrible lines and a lackluster storyline. Their frist priority should be hire a better writer team.
  • 343 really needs to be completely restructured. It's like all of the new developers at Bungie left to create their own company without anyone who has any experience developing games...
  • I hope they have a new head writer too. Didn't care for Halo 5 or any of Reed's comic book work.
  • Don't worry...Reed is gone...along with Josh Holmes. Hope Bonnie Ross is too. She sucks. I thought she was the Studio Head..
  • I like the 5 with Locke. no problems at all. I with the had a fight with US under control :) based in the campaign direction we would take.
  • Bring back local multiplayer. My family played multiplayer on older halo titles and we were really sad it was missing on latest. We took turns playing the halo 5 campaign and them the game was done for us.
  • I think MS didn't communicate enough the fact that it didn't have split-screen. They even misled people in thinking it was going to have it. Many people were disappointed after buying the game and I think this just made it worse.
  • That's because originally they promised it was going to be in there. It was not until like 2-3 months before launch that they wrote up a novel about it being removed and the reasons why. And after reading it I think they forgot the reasons why people play Halo. They totally targeted the wrong group.
  • They also had false advertisement of the feature when they had product placement in an episode of Agents of Shield where they showed 2 people "playing" halo 5 on the same TV even though at the time we all knew there wasn't going to be any split-screen. For me, Halo was always a time where I could get my friends (casual or non-casual gamers) over to play. Now, me and all my friends would need to have a XB1, the game AND Xbox live subscription to pay together. Big mistake IMO.
  • 100% agree. We dont hang out as much with Xbox on guys night anymore. I still remember the halo lan parties throughout elementary/highschool oh my were they fun!
  • What about middle school?
  • My biggest issue with H5 was the prerelease build up that Chief had gone rouge and that there was going to be a major conflict between him and Locke. In the end it ended up being pretty anticlimactic... The podcast story leading up to the game's release was pretty awesome, the game itself really didn't tie into it though, which was a shame.
  • Agreed. If the story meshed with where Hunt the Truth made it look like it was going, I think it could have been one of the more interesting stories they had told. Instead there seemed to be almost no correlation. As for Halo 6, I'm hoping Cutter, the Spirit of Fire, and Red Team get an appearance. And a Halo Wars 3! That was a good story.
  • I loved halo 5 & the new characters
  • I agree with the less than epic battle between chief and locke
  • If it still does not include split-screen (i.e. couch co-op) I will refuse to buy it (343? You there? I WILL NOT BUY IT!). I got suckered in Halo 5 and it was a complete disaster. I hated it and split-screen removal completely ruined it. So no preorder this time and I will wait until it is actually released and verified to have couch co-op back.
  • Thats unfortunate.  John Locke should be the new face of Halo.  MC  should just be retired.
  • Truly hope to see it as a Play Anywhere title.
  • Just make sure they deliver a great story w great gameplay. Story has to favor Chief though.
  • Are we really surprised, if you have such a Popular USP you should use it as much as you can, not forgetting to resurrect Cortana!!!!
  • I just want Cortana from Halo 4 back. I enjoyed "playing" Halo 5 as all Halo games feel right. But I had no connection with the game and after it was over I was left with a very unsatisfied feeling. Kind of like eating a steak that has no flavor.
  • master chief vs Cortana in 6 or they are save that one for seven
  • master chief vs Cortana in 6 or they are save that one for seven
  • master chief vs Cortana in 6 or they are save that one for seven
  • forge wold was way to small in halo5, bring back a high res verson of halo reach forge map
  • Just don't screw is in local co-op and it'll be, by default, a better game! Plus MCC removed 4 player local co-op which to this day still upsets many people
  • Praise Jesus!
  • I wouldn't have minded 5 as much if it was more balanced between the two sides...it was heavily lopsided 😅
  • Give us back local Coop!
    An gibe Halo 5 an update for this Feature too :) Also i want a full fire fight Modi like Reach or ODST had. The Gameplay an weapons are great in 5 and the Story isn't that bad but even in comaparison with Halo 1 to short.
  • They don't seem to get the issue. I mean, yeah, I hated that Chief was a borderline afterthought, but it's not like swapping Locke for Chief would have fixed the story. The characters (especially Locke and Warden) were useless, had no personality, and helped the story in no way. The story itself was a waste of time that took forever. The promise of length to the campaign ("twice as long as Halo 4!") was met with something lasting under 6 hours. The campaign was 90% filler. No amount of Chief would have fixed all of that filler and the completely uninteresting cast surrounding him, and changing because the Internet said so isn't exactly a recipe for success. Hopefully they're fixing it because they actually understand their failures. Then, let's hope they put some effort into the multiplayer. They need a major overhaul to the maps almost universally. Add some distance so it's more interesting than spawn killing and death time under 20 second every life. Put some real strategy into it, please.
  • What most people who complained didn't grasp is that halo5 was setting up the story going forward. Every part of such a huge and growing story can't solely focus on only one character all the time -- even if that character is the iconic Master Chief. Halo 5 showed more of his personality and his dealing with the loss of his beloved Cortana as well as his journey to find her and the subsequent revelations that occurred once he did find her. My only gripe is that game seemed too short amd the repeated battled with the Warden seemed a bit like the developers were repeating those battles as filler because they did not have enough diverse content. Other than those issues, I thought the game seemed more realistic and less comic book like.
  • Just give me some Brutes back please. I've been SICK of these Prometheans since 4