CCC: A lot of games that are heavy in multiplayer rely on achievements being earned in multiplayer. It doesn’t appear there is much focus on this with Reach. Was this another conscious effort on your part to enhance the campaign?
BJ: The team definitely made a conscious decision to reduce the number of multiplayer specific achievements and to make sure the ones that were included were reasonably attainable and didn’t require a perfect alignment of factors that was outside the control of the player (i.e. do something in a specific playlist). It’s also important to not have achievements that result in people playing the game in a different or wrong way – how many times in Halo 3 did someone ask you to not shoot and instead take turns splattering each other in a Ghost? The achievements are definitely a bit more skewed to campaign but there’s plenty to do and earn across all game modes.
CCC: Speaking of the campaign – Do you have any hints at how long players can expect the campaign to be?
BJ: It really depends how long players want the campaign to be. There are a lot of variables to consider – someone who just runs and guns is going to have a different experience than someone who takes time to explore the new larger environments and looser mission structure (and there are things to be found). Likewise, a player who tackles the game on Heroic or Legendary is going to spend more time in more challenging encounters than someone who blasts through the game on Easy. Overall though, Reach is a fully fledged and robust campaign that is at least on par with Halo 3 and in terms of gameplay experiences, pacing and story, surpasses it.
CCC: After Halo: Reach is there still room for other stories to be told in the Halo universe? Is this really Bungie’s last Halo title?
BJ: Reach is definitely the final Halo title from Bungie. It’s been an incredible ten year run creating and working in this Universe and seeing how far it’s come and seeing how much our fans have supported us. But the time has come for us to move on and we’re already hard at work on our next brand new universe. Is there still room for more Halo though? Sure there is. There’s definitely no shortage of fans demanding to know what happens to Chief after Halo 3 – Bungie included. At this point the future of Halo is in the hands of Microsoft and 343 Industries and we’ll be waiting just like everyone else to see what’s next.
We really appreciate you taking your time to answer these questions. We're sure our readers can't wait to get their hands on the game as well!
CCC Site Director