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VinnyMendoza

Halo 5 Sales/NPD Results Discussion and the Future of Halo

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Great post. It's hard to find posts on here which are able to look at Halo's decline in the context of all gamers rather than just our little competitive community. Many here often act like it is only our own community which has been mistreated by 343, but really, all types of Halo players have suffered under the last few Halo games.

 

I don't know whether to believe these numbers but regardless, we know there has been a drop and it is worth discussion.

 

This makes the 1.5 million prizepool for H5 seem...awkward? It's like Microsoft is throwing a huge sum of money to try and boost Halo Esports when there's simply not the population for it in the first place.

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Great post. It's hard to find posts on here which are able to look at Halo's decline in the context of all gamers rather than just our little competitive community. Many here often act like it is only our own community which has been mistreated by 343, but really, all types of Halo players have suffered under the last few Halo games.

 

I don't know whether to believe these numbers but regardless, we know there has been a drop and it is worth discussion.

 

This makes the 1.5 million prizepool for H5 seem...awkward? It's like Microsoft is throwing a huge sum of money to try and boost Halo Esports when there's simply not the population for it in the first place.

What they don't understand is that games don't get to that top tier of esports from simply tossing money at it. Although I can give my thanks to 343 for supporting our community, they don't understand that Halo was huge in the old days because Halo was simply Halo and the community is what made the competitive scene big. Once Reach came out the scene died and the overall player base for Halo dropped.

 

And people can have my head for saying this, but the only true way for Halo to grow big in the competitive niche and the franchise as a whole again is to make a game that is either exactly like H2 or H3. Either one. I would more so say H3 because well, that was the biggest the franchise and the competitive scene ever got.  

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It's sad seeing these numbers but then again it is no surprise given last year. Halo 4 was an overblown departure but I think the MCC did the worst damage in spite of its more tolerable state nowadays. It sucks that a collection of five games (four of them absolutely special, including the obvious Halo CE Multiplayer) had to be brought into this storm cloud.

 

Really wish 343 took a humble approach with Halo 5, maybe if they did most of the features would not be delayed.

 

EDIT: I want to clarify, as much as everyone else does, I think Forge should be in working order before it's even put into the game, but it still doesn't help the fact we went from a game that was supposed to kickstart Xbox One and the classical Halo fans being too good to be true. It's never going to heal the way we want it to.

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And people can have my head for saying this, but the only true way for Halo to grow big in the competitive niche and the franchise as a whole again is to make a game that is either exactly like H2 or H3. Either one. I would more so say H3 because well, that was the biggest the franchise and the competitive scene ever got.  

You're absolutely right. No matter how much certain posters believe so, the franchise wouldn't be able to return to its' former glory with a CE type Halo game. H2 and H3 were huge because they were the most fun to all groups of gamers.

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Great post @@Jawshe

 

Until we know the actual digital numbers, we can't make any concrete conclusions to this.

 

Obviously there was a large drop though, regardless as theres no way 75% of sales were digital. It doesn't take a rocket scientist to see the main reasons for this.

 

1. Xbox One is not as successful as 360. Also, PC gaming seems to be taking over the industry.

2. Halo 4 and MCC ruined a lot of the what "Halo" means in the industry.

3. The franchise is burning out from age.

4. Halo 5 is lacking many of the features of previous games. The casual Halo audience literally has nothing but Warzone. 

5. There are way too many good games already out that compete with Halo 5.

 

I think the largest two factors for the decline are 343's track record and the Xbox One performance. After two flops from 343, both fans and the general public just don't see Halo as a "surefire" good game. We can argue how Reach started the downward trend, but that game still held on to its audience through the shear amount of content and casual offerings the game had.

  

All good points, though while the first is certainly true, Xbox One sales are currently at roughly the same level as those of the Xbox 360 at the launch of Halo 3, so a slightly more direct comparison can be made there in terms of the impact of the other factors.

 

Halo 5 is missing the features that casuals love. Warzone is really nothing special at all. None of my casual friends were hyped for it, because there really is nothing to be hyped about. I pictured Warzone to have Scarabs, Pelicans, Phantoms, Longswords, placeable turrets, huge scale AI battles, etc. All Warzone is is BTB with a few more players and some AI targets to kill. Its definitely not a game seller, especially when compared to other "huge PvP" games like Battlefield, Battlefront, etc.

 

 

Warzone definitely lacks the scale to initially impress a wide audience, and the variety to sustain one. However, I suspect this is, to a large extent, a consequence of the underpowered nature of the Xbox One, and so if Halo 6: Subtitle launches on the same platform, I would not be surprised to see limited growth in terms of what is possible in Warzone.

 

The whole "sustain plan" is not going to work because the kinds of features they will be "sustaining" us with include things that are missing from Halo 5, rather than things that add more to the game. The sustain plan consists of adding Forge maps, BTB with only forge maps, and some new armors/REQs, and some missing gametypes? Oh...yeah... that'll keep people coming back. No.

 

Things like Forge, File browsers, gametypes, playlists, etc. are things that keep people playing the game. They aren't the type of features that draw people to buy the game in the first place. Johnny isn't going to rush out and buy Halo 5 in December because he heard they added Oddball. But you can guarantee that the absence of these features has made a lot of people angry, to where they don't purchase the game, ever.

 

Absolutely.

 

The sustain plan (as it currently appears) was a poor idea from the outset, and the reason for that is made clear by its name. The absence of many features that have been present in the franchise for several titles hurts the day one and week one experience. The lack of content means that there is less to hold people to the game, and so population bleeding begins earlier than it would otherwise. However, the return of such expected content as post-launch DLC can only 'sustain' the game's population at that time and slow the bleeding. It will not cause, as long as it is merely the release of features that Halo players expect to see when first exploring the menus of a new Halo title (which should be added), any significant growth in the population, or draw back large numbers of players who left after being dissatisfied with the day one offering. In short, instead of being a tool for maintaining and growing a high day/week one population, the sustain plan is only likely to be effective in slowing the decline of a lower population.

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Boy, when I said this pre-release you'd have thought I did 9/11. 

Now aren't you just a pillar of negativity?

 

Did they not include Forge at launch because it wasn't finished or because of #sustain?

Probably the former. The Cartographers said that the scenery assets weren't finished when they were making their maps and Josh Holmes outright said that it wasn't the latter.

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Did they not include Forge at launch because it wasn't finished or because of #sustain?

 

I suspect a combination of both. Given comments like this or this from Frank O'Connor on NeoGAF, that emphasize that Forge is arriving in accordance with their sustain roadmap, I believe it is likely that Forge was set for a post-launch release window in December at some time before launch and so was planned to be finished by that time, and was not finished/in a ship-able state at the time of Halo 5's launch.

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1. Xbox One is not as successful as 360. Also, PC gaming seems to be taking over the industry.

2. Halo 4 and MCC ruined a lot of the what "Halo" means in the industry.

3. The franchise is burning out from age.

4. Halo 5 is lacking many of the features of previous games. The casual Halo audience literally has nothing but Warzone. 

5. There are way too many good games already out that compete with Halo 5.

 

And 

 

6. Digital copies give you 2 licenses, meaning 2 people get a license to play the game with only 1 digital sale.

 

I know I've yet to pay "full price" for any xbox one game. I alternate with a friend who buys one, and I buy the next. 

 

There are still millions and millions of people (according to some xbox higher-up in some article on the backwards compatible thing, I can't be bothered to look it up sorry) which would drastically cut into Halo 5's sales. As of June of 2014, 84 million xbox 360 consoles had been sold as opposed to the ~14 million xbox ones sold as of March. This is probably the number 1 discrepancy in sales if you ask me, but I'm no business or economics whiz.

 

Them having a pool of ~50 million people to buy your game vs a pool of ~14 million, all of which can actually buy 1 copy for 2 people (at worst case making your pool of potential buyers ~50 million vs. ~7 million) is probably nothing to be overlooked (talking about Halo 4 sales vs Halo 5).

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- Something else?

No one owns an xbone, and the game itself is not motivating people to get systems

 

Apparently in terms of attach rate Halo 5 is doing pretty good

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I think these numbers are false. Or its comparing Halo 5 being released for less then a month compared to other games for there entire time on the shelves. I'm 100% sure Halo 3 blew reach and Halo 4 out of the water. I was just reading an article about how Microsoft hasn't been releasing any info on total games sold for Halo 5 or even the xbox one in general.

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I think a large factor in Halo 5's success is what happens post launch. Like I said before, the two biggest obstacles Halo 5 had to overcome was 1) 343's bad track record/hurting Halos "insta sell" characteristics, and 2) Poor performance of Xbox One. So no matter what, these would have hurt Halo 5 regardless of the game actually shipped consisted of. There was nothing 343 could have done around launch to change these factors. Obviously its 343's fault for 343's reputation, but the fact remains that at the time of launch, there was nothing they could have done to change this fact.

 

So lets take those two points, and look at the future of Halo, and what Halo 5 has the potential to do for the franchise. The sustain plan definitely can work, and it makes sense that the first wave of post-launch content will consist of "catching up" features, AKA BTB, Forge, File browser, Gametypes. Once these features release (in December, ideally), then its up to 343 to provide content that will actually draw in people to buy the game.

 

I've also said many times that this first wave of "catch up" will help stop people from leaving, but probably won't draw in new people. The question becomes: Will 343 be able to deliver interesting enough content? After BTB, Forge and like are added, what else can 343 do? I hope the answer isn't some run of the mill REQ packs, mediocre maps, one more Warzone map, some playlists,etc. The answer better be something that wows us. Its got to be lots of amazing maps for BTB, Warzone and 4v4, coming every single month, or entirely new and interesting weapons, or new gametypes that we haven't seen that are innovative and fun, or entirely new Warzone mode thats completely different (Like Scarab wars or something).

 

My point is that the upcoming content may feel like catch up, but the content after that and over the next 3 years has to be great, and regular. This will keep people playing Halo, allowing it to stay relevant, but will also demonstrate 343's ability to keep Halo players satisfied. That way, when Halo 6 comes out, people have some confidence in the company. They'll know that by purchasing the game, they are buying into a long-lasting, well supported, ever-changing, always interesting, community-driven world, and not just some game riding off the hype of previous installments.

 

We have a right to be highly skeptical though, because 343 have yet to show us that they can deliver lots of quality content in a somewhat timely manner. Its hard for us to believe the post launch content will be enough because we're dealing with a company that has stil not been able to fix MCC in over a year past launch. Hopefully we are proven wrong.

 

Halo 5 has the potential to be Halo's transition back to what the franchise is known for, but it all depends on how 343 handle post-launch.

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I've also said many times that this first wave of "catch up" will help stop people from leaving, but probably won't draw in new people. The question becomes: Will 343 be able to deliver interesting enough content? After BTB, Forge and like are added, what else can 343 do? I hope the answer isn't some run of the mill REQ packs, mediocre maps, one more Warzone map, some playlists,etc. The answer better be something that wows us. Its got to be lots of amazing maps for BTB, Warzone and 4v4, coming every single month, or entirely new and interesting weapons, or new gametypes that we haven't seen that are innovative and fun, or entirely new Warzone mode thats completely different (Like Scarab wars or something).

 

If this turns out to be correct/still in the pipeline:

 

Some additional playlists have been found through Halo 5's API; many of these are obviously for testing purposes, but the list is interesting nonetheless, particularly as potentially indicative of future playlists, in particular the Warzone Turbo and Warzone Kraken playlists (there is also a Big Team Battle playlist which contains Slayer and Strongholds; I would imagine that launches with Forge and the BTB Forge Maps in December): https://www.reddit.com/r/halo/comments/3ri36m/well_this_is_an_interesting_playlist_found_in_the/cwota5b. I would quote the full list here, but it's rather long.

 

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[insert Mandatory PC Master Race comment here]

 

 

But seriously @@Jawshe nail it.

 

 

So many games just do it better than Halo, whether we admit it or not. Also MCC really tarnished Halo's reputation.

 

 

The people that stick with Halo are hardcore fans of the series that stick with it not matter how bad it gets lol. #abusiveRelationship

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The main reason is that the XB1 has done terribly as a console.  Other factors are definitely relevant, but this is the main issue ... I realize that H3 sold better on roughly the same amount of systems (~15-20 million) but there was very little competition in 2007 for FPS games on console.  Similarly, H1 sold so well on console because (1) it was amazing and (2) there was even less competition in 2001-02.

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Boy, when I said this pre-release you'd have thought I did 9/11. 

 

I did say this waaay back after they announced it. Nothing "wowed" me from it's showcase. Too lazy to dig up the post though.

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now will they keep making their halo or nah? It's really frustrating and sad to see these numbers and the current state of this franchise. I love this series so much man...so much..

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Nah dude, they're gonna try to spin this as "no one likes arena gameplay in 2015" and move Halo even farther away from its core.

 

shit...you might be right

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The main reason is that the XB1 has done terribly as a console.  Other factors are definitely relevant, but this is the main issue ... I realize that H3 sold better on roughly the same amount of systems (~15-20 million) but there was very little competition in 2007 for FPS games on console.  Similarly, H1 sold so well on console because (1) it was amazing and (2) there was even less competition in 2001-02.

This argument is easily proven wrong so since I have done so over the last 5 years I will not list other games that were huge from that era. To try and convince me that other games that had huge followings did not exist in 2001-2010 is literally the most uninformed and utter repugnant bullshit anybody can argue, and with all due respect I have to be blunt and say I'm sick of seeing it.  

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