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XBox's Phil Spencer Thinks Halo Can Go On For Decades

by on 09/23/2015
 

Gamespot recently interviewed the head of Microsoft’s XBox division, Phil Spencer, about the Halo franchise, Halo 5, and where he sees the property going in the future. Spencer suggests he sees that future as limitless.
“Halo is somewhat unique to [other shooters] that we were talking about in that it has such a heavy character and story base to it. I think it’s one of the real strengths of the franchise. People know the characters’ names in the franchise,” he said. “They know who Master Chief is. They know who Cortana is. It’s not always true of other shooting franchises that you have that same connection to the characters in the story, and that there’s a consistency and a connective tissue between the games.”
It’s easy to snark at boastful statements from executives, but….Spencer isn’t wrong. Mario isn’t dead, Lara isn’t dead, Sonic isn’t dead (despite Sega’s best efforts), and the likelihood of Master Chief falling out of public knowledge is also slim. Enough people know who Cortana is that Microsoft created a real-life Siri-like AI and named it after her. Other FPS games like Call of Duty have no central character. The people you play are often generic grunts you design. It’s because of Halo’s recognizable characters that the odds of Halo games coming out 50 years from now are fairly good.
Even though Spencer knows he has a property he can rely on for the infinite future, he’s aware of the danger of burning it out.
“I don’t want to overplay or overuse the franchise. It’s a franchise and an IP I expect to be around 20 years from now, much the same way Star Wars and Spider-Man and other things are. I think it has the weight that it can support that, but I think that the franchise then needs to be managed in a way that doesn’t burn it out.”

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