Frankie's Bungie Updates - October 22, 2004
Originally hosted at Subnova
Short and Bittersweet
- I'm all alone. Sketch is out of the office today because he just got back from a New York press thing, and his dog's face had swelled up to the size of a soccer ball. Meanwhile, Halo 2 is all done, and our work continues apace on the new features for the website, and they are COOL. Zach, Doug, Roger and the rest of the web and web test guys (currently the only employees here on a regular basis) have been slaving away over hot keyboards trying to implement not just detailed stats and clan stuff, but some genuine surprises.
- With any luck, Halo 2 on Live and Bungie.net will become like peanut butter and jelly. Like cookies and cream. Like Ben and Jerry. I feel suddenly very hungry...
- The countdown to launch is excruciating. Now even the staff (who could technically play whenever they want) are jonesing to get their hands on the finished game. There's a difference between playing at the stark, dull confines of your desk and sitting in the comfort of your own home, screaming abuse at the TV while some stranger pumps SMG rounds into your already shattered corpse. So, in a very real sense, we know exactly what you're going through.
- The PR department at MS made that 1.5 million preorders announcement earlier this week, and I have to tell you, that feels just a little bit unreal. Like they're talking about someone else's game. We're massively superstitious and as a rule, kinda pessimistic. We're always trying to keep our heads down and just do our best, but you hear numbers like that, and it's suddenly a lot of pressure! Sales figures are for other people to worry about — right now, we're much more concerned that people genuinely enjoy the game.
- Cam just told me that the TV campaign starts next week but he won't tell me (or doesn't know) what channels, times and dates there are. So I guess I'll just have to suck it up and watch America's Top Model and Dawson's Creek in the vain hopes of catching the (rad) 30 second and 60 second TV spots. There's something simultaneously cool and lame about seeing a commercial for a game or movie you like. I guess at heart I'm a fanboy.
The ads will run globally, starting this week and next, and we've also been hammering away on a couple of TV shows for the launch period. They should be pretty cool. Lucky viewers will get to see how tall, handsome and luxuriantly coiffed I am. Think Tom Cruise with the brutal charisma of Sonny Chiba. Totally hot. We had to play a lot of multiplayer, record tons of cool footage and you'd be surprised how easy it is to convince the team to get online for a few taped games...
- Butcher came and watched us playing today. He said he couldn't even look at my screen because of my play style. He noted that I can watch the screen or the motion tracker, but not both simultaneously. It's pretty depressing to have your entire gameplay skillz pwned by a Halo 2 lead.
Boll, who is actually a talented artist, made this sad, poignant guest rendering of Mister Chief, who realizes, that on November 9th, when people have their Halo 2, he will no longer be needed. And so he will fade away....
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