Flash of Steel header image 2

Halo RTS Shot Down

September 9th, 2006 by Troy Goodfellow · No Comments · Uncategorized

The fan created Halo-based real time strategy game Halogen has been put to an end by Microsoft attorneys. In the words of the developers:

The problem with using copyrighted intellectual property as a base for a fan project is that you’re very susceptible to legal action. We always figured that since Halogen was such a different take on the Halo franchise, we might manage to make it without incident. That changed today.

Though it is amusing that someone would think that merely changing how someone else’s IP was being used makes it more likely that it would pass muster with the lawyers, I feel sorry for people who’ve put a lot of thought and work into a mod that looked like it was going to be as ambitious as this one.

The attraction of using someone else’s IP is understandable. If this was just a bunch of guys making their own independent RTS, they wouldn’t have gotten near the attention they did working on a Halo strategy game. It’s hard to publicize original ideas. Hell, it’s hard to come up with original ideas. Then to make other people care? Why not just hook yourself to a larger cultural object and have someone else do the hard stuff? If it is respectful and well done, it might get enough of a fanbase to dodge the legal avenues. And with modding so huge now, companies are more open to this sort of thing.

But this isn’t really modding, of course. It’s creating a whole new game, like if I made a Mario strategy game. Wario’s War or something. All the scenarios would be raiding the enemy base only to find that the princess is in another town center. And the idea of a Halo RTS is so obvious that Bungie would be crazy not to already be working on one. And if they weren’t, they now have your ideas to consider with no legal consequences.

So, a sad but forseeable end to what looked like a promising project. Here’s hoping that all that stuff doesn’t go to waste.

(Spotted at Destructoid.)

EDIT: I’ve just been reminded that Bungie’s early development plans for Halo included an RTS version, so they’ve not only thought of it, they’ve probably built some of it. No good idea is ever original.


No Comments so far ↓

Like gas stations in rural Texas after 10 pm, comments are closed.