Halo: Reach Title Update
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This page lists all Title Updates released for Halo: Reach. The Halo: Reach Title Update 1.1 was an update for Halo: Reach, created by 343 Industries, in conjunction with the Halo franchise transitioning from Bungie to 343. First revealed at Halo Fest in late August 2011 and released on September 21st, 2011, the update is unique in that it currently is gametype-based, and has not been directly applied to the full multiplayer game code.
- 1 Gameplay Changes
- 2 History
- 3 The Beta Matchmaking Playlist
- 4 References
- 5 External links
Two current bloom settings exist. They are built into the gametypes and are not configurable in-game. 85% Bloom is the current standard with the TU. Zero Bloom (ZB), as its name suggests, features no reticule expansion, but weapons do retain some spread. ZB is currently used in its own playlist, as well as under the MLG playlist settings.
85% bloom improved the DMR and made pacing much more viable. However, 85% bloom had a different effect on the Needle Rifle. The reticule contracted just as fast as it expanded, making the Needle Rifle indifferent between 85% bloom and ZB. Combined with its automatic fire and stronger aim assist, 343 decided to remove the Needle Rifle from loadouts in TU Slayer Pro gametypes.
ZB had a very strong effect on the pistol, as despite its high spread at long range, it made it very powerful in close-quarters combat with its high rate of fire and bleed-through making it a four-shot minimum. Even with the downgrade back to a five-shot and being removed as a secondary spawning weapon, the pistol is still very powerful at close range. The DMR also benefited from ZB, retaining its long-range combat abilities.
Damage Bleed Through Shielding
Unlike previous Halo games, Halo: Reach did not possess the ability for conventional attacks, mainly melee attacks, to go through a small amount of shielding and inflict damage on a player's health meter. For example, the DMR breaks energy shielding with four shots. Firing three shots at an opponent and following up with a melee attack would only result in a player with no shielding, but full health.
The TU brought back the ability for players to inflict damage through a small amount of shielding. In the situation from above, three DMR shots and a melee would kill a player.
While bleed-through has little effect on standard DMR duels, bleed-through increased the potency of the Needle Rifle and Pistol, reducing the minimum kill shots to six for the Needle Rifle and four for the pistol (until the December update).
Reduced Armor Lock
The TU Armor Lock configured it so if a player was attacked while in Armor Lock, the damage would be transferred to the AA's energy level, depleting it faster. A grenade detonation near a player using Armor Lock would deplete the meter and bring a player out of Armor Lock. This made the Armor Lock more applicable for blocking a powerful attack without prolonging the invulnerability phase.
Armor Lock also nullified "Plasma Shedding," where a player stuck with a Plasma Grenade could go into Armor Lock to survive the grenade detonation. The TU Armor Lock would not save a player stuck with a Plasma Grenade. Sticking a player that is already in Armor Lock, however, would only drain the AA's power meter and remove the player from Armor Lock.
Reduced Active Camo
The TU reduced the Active Camo AA's time usage by 15 seconds, reducing the overall time a player can engage the Active Camo AA, especially while moving. This was applied to reduce player tendency to camp at long range with a Sniper Rifle, as well as general usage. It encourages players to use it more sparingly and cautiously.
Disabled Sword Block
In Halo: Reach, players were able to deflect an Energy Sword attack with a well-timed melee attack, something that was only possible in Halo 3 with another Energy Sword. Removing Sword Block brought the Energy Sword in line with its previous incarnations, improving its potency.
Co-Op Campaign and Firefight
Creating the Halo: Combat Evolved Pistol
The changes include turning the pistol into an automatic fire weapon, changing the weapon's rate of fire, and most importantly, increasing the weapon's damage output to make a three-shot minimum kill possible. Modified bloom is used on the weapon to mimic the original pistol's loss of accuracy when firing automatic.
The pistol is not a complete replica of the original though. The Anniversary pistol retains the eight-round clip of the Reach pistol, retains hitscan and doesn't have the same range as the original.
- "'Twas the night before the Beta Hopper, when all through the game, not a creature was stirring, even the Gúta were tame. The AAs were hung on the selection screen with care, in hopes that the hopper soon would be there. The Spartans were nestled all snug in their beds, while visions of zero bloom danced in their heads..."
- — bs angel
Unlike previous Halo Title Updates, the Reach TU was implemented very slowly, with a test gametype and its own beta playlist. Players were prompted to download the update for Halo: Reach upon sign-up after September 21, 2011, but the TU changes were not implemented into matchmaking at the time. 343 Industries put up a sample gametype on the Halo Waypoint File Share shortly after, which contained Zero Bloom, allowing players to experience the TU in custom games.
As soon as the TU was revealed at Halo Fest, the Halo Waypoint forums set up several threads to collect feedback based on the changes the Title Update brought, with a general thread and separate threads for each mechanic.
The Beta Matchmaking Playlist went live as part of the October 4th, 2011 Matchmaking Update, under the name TU Beta. It featured both Slayer and Objective gametypes with the TU and 85% bloom, as well as the ability to vote for ZB Slayer.
On November 1, 2011, the weighting for ZB Slayer was increased, based on data collection showing a strong favor for the ZB gametype. The update also brought along a slight tweak to the TU Armor Lock. The Beta playlist was also configured to show its own stats on Bungie.net and Halo Waypoint, as before it was sharing data with the defunct Premium Slayer playlist. Since the Needle Rifle behaved indifferently between ZB and 85% bloom, the update also removed from loadouts in the Slayer Pro gametypes in the Beta.
The launch of Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary on November 14 also brought about four new playlists centered around the Anniversary maps and fully utilized the TU: Anniversary Squad, FFA, BTB and Classic. Anniversary Classic and Anniversary gametypes also revealed a rendition of the CE Pistol, modifying the Reach pistol to behave as close to the original as possible.
The December 7th update brought about the first real spread of the TU to the normal Reach matchmaking playlists. Team Objective, Squad Slayer and Multi Team were updated, and the TU Beta playlist was renamed ZB Slayer, keeping only the Zero Bloom Slayer gametype while staying under the Beta hopper. Due to the addition of bleed-through, the Reach pistol was able to kill with four shots, the last one being to the head. Due to feedback about the pistol, 343 nerfed the damage on the Reach pistol, bringing it back to a five-shot minimum kill, with the fifth shot able to bleed through shielding and kill. Pistols were also removed as secondary spawning weapons in ZB, replaced with the Assault Rifle. The MLG playlist was also updated with ZB and advanced traits.
The January 10th, 2012 update brought about more playlists converting to the TU. The Arena, Big Team Battle and Double Team received the TU. On February 7, Rumble Pit was also updated to TU, and ZB Slayer was moved into the competitive hopper, removing the Beta from selection.
The February update was unique in that the Team Slayer playlist was reconfigured to set up a two-week voting period where players could choose to vote for Vanilla Reach or the TU gametype, since Team Slayer is currently one of the most populated standard playlists. During the voting period, players could choose to vote between a vanilla match, a TU match, or none of the above. Since tie votes default to the first choce from the top, the first week put the vanilla choice as the first vote. During the second voting week, TU was the first voting choice.
The Beta Matchmaking Playlist
The Beta playlist consisted of 4v4 gametypes. Teams were composed of 3-4 players, with a max party size of eight and a maximum local player count of four.
- Details on the Title Update from The Halo Bulletin: August 31st, 2011
- A Statistical Analysis of the 85% Bloom DMR
- Tracking the TU Application in Halo: Reach; the Matchmaking Update Changelists on Halo Waypoint
- The original ZB TU Gametype on Halo Waypoint's File Share
- The Beta playlist details on The Halo Bulletin: September 14th, 2011