Halo 3: ODST more open-world, Halo Reach could use Natal

It’s going to be one the biggest releases of the year due to its heritage and fevering fan base but that doesn’t mean Halo 3: ODST is going to rest on its laurels. Instead of just giving Halo 3 a new lick of paint and calling it a new game Bungie are going to mix-up the formula to include some non-linear open-world elements.

Speaking to The Seattle Times, creative director and writer Joseph Staten shed some light on the rapidly approaching release. “We’re doing a lot of pretty neat things in terms of mixing it up, introducing some non-linearity, some free exploration,” Staten said. However he did allay potential fears that hardcore fans won’t recognize their beloved brand by confirming that “nothing that strays too far from the fun ‘Halo‘ experience, but we definitely decided to take a little bit of risk and have some fun with this one.”

Staten revealed that the title will have free-roaming elements where the player is tasked with finding clues to identify what happened to the squad but heading to specific locations will trigger flashbacks that will play more like Halo 3 and will feature more clues to help unravel the mystery. What mystery remains unclear as we all know the Covenant did it.

The full article contains more information on how the studio’s departure from Microsoft ownership is faring and a little tidbit about Halo Reach as studio head Harold Ryan said, after an early look at Project Natal, “I absolutely think ‘Reach‘ could be enabled with it.”