Halo The Master Chief Collection is a Black Eye for Us Says Frank OConnor

Halo: The Master Chief Collection is “a Black Eye for Us”, Says Frank O'Connor

Lee Bradley

Halo Franchise Development Director Frank O'Connor believes that Halo: The Master Chief Collection’s disastrous launch and long-running online problems are “definitely a black eye for us”.

Speaking to XBA a few weeks back at the at the EGL’s “Battle For Europe” event in the Halo Championship Series, O'Connor discussed the mistakes that were made with the remastered compilation, while reassuring players that the same problems won’t occur with Halo 5: Guardians.

“Halo: The Master Chief Collection is definitely a black eye for us,” said O’Connor. “We’re not going to rest on our laurels or hide from the mistakes we made. However, I will say that the nature of The Master Chief Collection - you’ve got five different game engines, you’ve got five different studios working on it, you’ve got 343 working on putting it all together - the footprint and complexity was outrageous.

“To be perfectly honest, there were a lot of things that happened when we got it into a retail environment that we simply didn’t see in a test environment, so that’s what really caught us by surprise. We’ve been sort of scrambling to get it first in a playable stage and now we’re going to get it in a polished stage, so that people are getting what they deserved in the first place. We’re never going to back away from that or shy away from that.

“However, Halo 5 is being made by a completely different team. It’s a singular product. It was built from the ground up for this new technology, rather than being sort of dragged kicking and screaming from 2001 and forced and shoehorned into a 2014 console. So the problem spaces are still very challenging but they’re radically different. I think the beta is already a decent first step, in a retail environment, showing that we don’t have the same problems.”

The quote comes from a larger interview discussing Halo 5’s eSports aspirations, as well as how 343 Industries is attempting to juggle the needs of eSports players and your average scrub. It’s interest stuff. Give it a watch below. Halo 5: Guardians is out on Xbox One this October 27th.

  • More like a broken leg.
  • @1 Exactly. I black eye implies victimization. They can't blame anyone but themselves, no matter how many excuses they make up.
  • More like black eye to the fans who bought it day one expecting what was advertised only to get a broken collection of games that still needs polishing 6 months later.
  • @1 and 2 You people are ruthless. Despite the failures that this game had, as mentioned above, it was truly a first experience for the gaming industry; not merely a matter of copy and paste. On a more positive and productive note, I'm sure developers who wish to make a current-gen collection such as this (Gears of War Collection? Fallout Collection?) will learn the true pains of doing such a thing and will hopefully not make the same mistakes.
  • i agree with 4, yeah i totally it sucks at launch, but NO ONE ever has attempted to do what they did
  • lol really 1 and 2 just really. anyways they accepted what they did and they are slowly fixing it I haven't bought it yet as I am a fail :( but I will buy this as soon as I get the money for it but anyways they admitted to their mistakes at least a company can so far just 343 and Dice admitted to their mistakes and focus solely on fixing the problem
  • This game should have been included in the Games with Gold program by now.
  • Be better if I had my odst already
  • @4 1 and 2 hit the nail on the head. Sure, 343i did something no one else has done before, but it still doesn't excuse the fact that it was broken (and still has so many issues) when it launched. I refuse to believe ample testing was done in preparation for the launch. And quite honestly I would be totally okay with not getting the game until this summer or whatever, if the extra wait meant it wouldn't be bugged up the ass. So you can't just rid the coattails of "it has never been done before, give it a break." If Ford made the first ever car that also had a built in hot dog machine, and the wheels fell off when you drove it, would you be saying the same thing? I don't think so.
  • 5 different game engines? 4 games um......ok? Thought it was 4 different engines premastered plays like h2 am I wrong?
  • @10: Halo CE anniversary and Halo 2 anniversary remasters are on a separate engine. So there's where the 5th comes from.
  • [Comment deleted]
  • Whether the project was difficult or not does not excuse them from making such a huge fucking mess. A black eye? More like getting hit by a bus.
  • I've always have loved all the Halo games from day one, but I'll be the first to say that the Beta for Halo 5 felt/played nothing like any previous Halo game. I will only be getting it to continue the fight, but as for the Multiplayer aspect I'm not to worried about it at all. Like I said above it just felt nothing like Halo Multiplayer
  • It wasn't the only game to have problems last holiday season. It always seems to be retail games that seem to have problems. Digital only seem not to have that many problems.
  • Because when they play test them, it's usually in a better simulated environment. What you play in the play test for digital only is usually what launches. As far as networking goes at least. Master Chief Collection sold a lot of Xbox Ones. Can't trust Microsoft OR 343i...
  • What annoys me, and I hope someone will agree, is the fact that we're buying so many games these days that just don't work properly. It's not just this game but so many others too. I'm a massive fan of halo but why is it acceptable to spend our hard earned money on a game that doesn't work? I appreciate the time and effort these teams put in to try and fix these issues, but would you ever for example buy a DVD and accept that the last half an hour of the film doesn't work? Never. So why has it become normal that we need to just accept games not working after spending £45 on them?
  • Should of took the Black Eye Skull off before they started then :P
  • [Comment deleted]
  • I'm still mad at Xbox over this game and after they refused to give me a refund I only purchase used xbox one games
  • Lol, if it were a different game, the people defending it would be slagging it off endlessly. The excuse of it worked different in a retail environment than a test one makes you wonder why their test team are still employed
  • I understand their difficulties and know it was a very difficult task, but if the thing clearly does not work properly yet, then you don't release the damn thing.
  • Black eye skull on!
  • Castration more like an halo 5 will be the decision if 343 an halo is dead or this was just a big balls up as a huge halo fan I hope it was just a mistake
  • [Comment deleted]
  • Imagine how much simpler this would be if we weren't tossing entire libraries one generation at a time. You could virtualize all the past gen games in their native environments and 85% of your problems go away. Considering the Xbone is the size of a VCR to begin with there's no reason they can't just include a second/third board to handle the 360 and original XBox games. Then again, they couldn't re-sell you past games as "remastered"/retextured ports that way. MCC is equally as much a 343i problem as it is an amnesiac hardware problem in general.
  • More like the Xbox One is a black eye for MS
  • Excuses. How many times is this sort of thing going to happen? Large companies that DON'T beta test with the general public are always surprised by the bugs and provide excuses as to why, but its always the same old drivel. DICE and Battlefield, Bethesda and Fallout:NV, Ubisoft and the latest Assassin's Creed buggy mess. At least I do my part and not support ANY developer until the game has been tested by you people for several weeks. :)
  • @28 fallout NV was Obsidian, just published by bethesda
  • It's nice of them to make a statement regarding it, but I'd personally be more impressed if they'd left out the stuff about 'you've got 5 different game engines and developers'.
  • "But no one had ever tried anything like this before." And now we know why.
  • @28 - Yeah, you're right. But still, even Skyrim had its issues with broken quests too. No public testing leads to patch hell.
  • @4 to add to what you've said. This is a lesson for other companies looking to release a collection of games. But at the same time a "Gears of War" collection would be a hell of a lot easier as every gears game ran on the Unreal 3 engine, and all of them were 360 titles. Master Chief Collection is unique as it literally spans the entire history of Xbox. You've got 2 original xbox games with different game engines then you've got halo 3 with it's own engine. They Halo 4 with a complete new engine, and lastly Halo 2 Anniversary multiplayer with it's own engine. So the balancing act you'd have to make to have them all run perfect together is already a coding nightmare. Top that with he unifying menu system and having to coordinate working with multiple studios.. That being said I honestly think they should of done a closed alpha or beta. Maybe open it up to only people in the Xbox Preview program. You'd get to download the entire game and play it for a week, and report back. This way they would of seen the issues it had at a retail level and could of fixed it before it even launched.
  • So soon we will have the answer to the age-old question- Which came first, Halo 5 or a playable MCC?
  • [Comment deleted]
  • It's such a relief to hear someone admit that, especially after hundreds of thousands of people already paid for the fucking game. 343 can kiss my ass. They lost a customer, and I certainly hope I'm not the only one.
  • What's funny about it is, the devs of the MCC proved that the XBOX One is perfectly capable of playing 360 games (hell, even FIRST XBOX games). I may be the only one, but it was a HUGE disappointment for me that the One had no backwards compability, if it had, I would have bought one day one!!! As it is now, my back-catalogue of games yet too play on the 360 is simply too large, so I won't be investing in a One in the near future...
  • ROTFL @ the comments from all the little kids!!!!
  • @4: As a consumer, I don't care if it was a first experience for the game industry. As a consumer, I only care about if the product I'm spending money on works. Halo Master Chief Collection doesn't work. The developers deserve nothing less than ruthlessness for selling a broken product. If it was too big a project to manage and put a working product out the door, they simply should not have done it in the first place. I'm really getting sick of all these corporate apologists. These companies don't care about you, they just want to milk you dry for every penny. Stop defending them when they f*** up. Stand up for yourselves, demand a working product for your money and boycott the companies that don't provide one until they either get their act together and make a working game or go out of business from putting out too much broken shit.
  • @17: Well said. And the bottom line is that it's not acceptable for us to be spending money on broken games. But the game industry is never going to stop taking advantage of gamers, so it's up to us to stand up and not buy broken games. Sadly, with people like #4 around to try and justify the game industry selling broken games, it's a problem that will get worse before it gets better.
  • The more gamers act like sniveling corporate apologists, the more the industry is going to take advantage of deeply naive and vulnerable gamers. I'm sure there is some publishers who want gamers to pay money for patches to fix games and the messed up thing is, some gamers on forum would defend it! If this game was delayed till March, I think it would of been fine more or less but MS HAD to have a big name game for the Christmas 2014 market
  • @4 you are a bellend. A first for the gaming industry? ! How? Collections have beem done before, WITHOUT fuckups. This isn't defendable. They fucked up and should grovel to its customers.
  • @42 It was a first its not just grab game type line of code and it works, with multiply engines running at the same time or near the same time it was most likely hell and has never been attempted, collections were done but not like that it spanned 2 consoles, 5 different game engines, some of the mess could have been avoided if they didn't try to integrated the games the way they did most collections you start it up and it asks which game do you want to play then it loads into that specific game this was everything cobbled into one I am not saying that as a excuse as I think it should have been delayed or had a close alpha/beta to a few lucky users
  • [Comment deleted]
  • I had my first Halo experience with this. I didn't play much MP, as I would end up waiting for 15-20 minutes to get into a game. But as for the SP experience, I loved it. Still have plenty of achievements to get, so I best get back into it.
  • @39 Well said!
  • They got cocky and took on too much, infact they didn't, they palmed off all the games to other companies and just made the home screen, that's the main thing that was broken. They got cocky and thought they could make a quick buck, which they did, but also destroyed most of the halo fanbase by releasing a broken game.
  • It doesn't help that the Xbox One itself is fairly unstable, I have had the game crash on me so often I'm not sure which ones are the fault of the OS and which ones are the fault of the game.
  • Just wait until they try this again once Halo 5 and 6 have released. Surely they'll attempt a 6-game collection. OT: They shouldn't have attempted a collection in the first place if they weren't going to test it properly. Everyone would've been perfectly content with just a Halo 2 Remaster. I seriously haven't played very much since the game launched, because my first memories of it were pretty bad. I hope they continue to improve it throughout the Xbox One's lifetime. Maybe one day, it'll be what we all envisioned.
  • If Nintendo need to delay a game to make sure it works properly then they will. I have had 3 Wii U crashes since launch 2.5 years ago - I have had more X-Box One crashes the day I got it out of the box - and the problem is that the console was well over a year old and MCC had been out for two months. Day one troubles isn't too bad, but day 170+ problems is crazy and it's why I haven't played it since Diablo III & Dragon Age 3, and now Mortal Kombat X is making me care even less if they ever fix MCC properly.
  • When the game first launched, I was understanding. When the first few patches came out, I was patient. but now, its still broken and its for 6 months, and I am still having problems with in game chat. Thats a basic functionality and its still screwed up.
  • I'm a huge fan of the series, even the Halo 4, and I have supported them for a while. But this was such a trainwreck and they did themselves no favors during the process. The game should have never been released in the state it was and it will haunt them for a long long time.
  • Judging by the clowns here defending a broken game I guess you'd be ok with buying a new car and it not working because it was a car no one had built before? Gtfo
  • @4 the Orange box had five games that worked flawlessly.
  • I don't play multi-player on the Master Chief collection so I assume that is what is broken? The campaigns have worked out just fine for me.
  • 1&2 are the kind of people that wait to the last minute to merge onto the on ramp and then act like its your fault for being in the lane when you were supposed to be. People love to complain. I read a Halo 5 article earlier this week where there was some dude complaining about 1080p because his wife couldn't play split screen with him.... really? That might be the saddest thing I've ever read on this website. (maybe the second saddest after seeing all the Bungie fanboys still try to convince everyone that Destiny is a good game lol)
  • You need to register before being able to post comments

Game navigation