Halo 3 ViDoc: Is Quisnam Protero Damno!
Halo 3 ViDoc: Is Quisnam Protero Damno (posted on Bungie.net on April 10, 2007) is a behind the scenes look at the multiplayer faculty in Halo 3. This 7:12 minute clip interviews various Bungie employees about the development of the various multiplayer aspects of the game.
The ViDoc expands on the concepts so far seen in the Halo 3 multiplayer features, as well as introducing several new ones. It traces the development of High Ground and Valhalla, as well as the purpose and layouts of the maps.
The Video also introduced several new features to be seen in Halo 3. The game is to introduce several "Offensive/Defensive" maps where one team is on permanent "offense" and the other is on "defense" and always protecting its base from infiltration. These maps will emphasize strategic choke points and defensive turrets to turn the tide of the game. In addition, the teleporters commonly seen in Halo: Combat Evolved and Halo 2 will be replaced by the Man Cannon as a rapid means of transportation, thus allowing users of the cannon to be vulnerable while in transit.
There will also be several camera features, such as the ability to get replays, freeze an image, and get different angles on a fight. This will allow newer players to review games and find their own weaknesses as well as the strengths of more skilled players. Most of the Multiplayer Medals were seen on background screens, and they will return in their original forms. In addition, at least five more yet unnamed medals will be available to win.
The video shows the weapons of Halo 3, and confirms that many of the most recognizable ones from both Halo and Halo 2 will return for Halo 3. The SMG, Covenant Carbine, Plasma Rifle, Shotgun, SRS99D Sniper Rifle, Brute Shot, BR55HB SR Battle Rifle, Plasma Grenade, Frag Grenade, MA5C Assault Rifle, Energy Sword, and Needler were all seen in the video, as well as the Shield Grenade, confirming that its purpose is to create an impenetrable shield that shields the user from harm. The video also introduces a new weapon: the "Trip Mine," which acts as a proximity mine players will be able to throw that can destroy Vehicles and nearby infantry when triggered.
It should also be noted that at 0:23-0:24 of the clip, it shows a blue Spartan wielding a machine gun turret.
0:20 - David Candland: In multiplayer, everything and anything can happen.
0:24 - Oh my God, motherf*(warthog horn)**ers.
0:37 - Chris Carney: Enjoy your walk back to the beach.
0:40 - Steve Cotton: While you're working on the project, the bar's sort of a moving target. It can be intimidating, for sure. Typically my morning starts with me weeping at my desk (pause) for about 30 minutes. And then I get to work.
1:03 - Lars Bakken: ...and it's become fundamental in how we're working on the game.
1:07 - Ah, Froman! Aw you're so close!
1:10 - Mike Buelterman: From day 1, people have been in there playing, which really, really refines the gameplay.
1:16 - Lars Bakken: It was horrible there.
1:18 - Tyson Green: Who broke territories?
1:21 - Steve Cotton: I think Halo 2 multiplayer has been played like 4 billion times. Competing against yourself is stressful.
1:29 - Chris Carney: Coming up with these scenarios that people play over and over again, now how can we rethink that and create something that's new and interesting? We started getting more into these asymmetrical maps, where it's offense versus defense, where that's a choke-point that you want to hold, and I think High Ground is an example of that.
1:49 - Steve Cotton: Some of the specific things that we tried out were having a wall that you have to get past, that sort of defined whether you won or lost the game.
1:57 - Chris Carney: Then we stuck some towers in, and we put AI gunners on all the towers, so as you're running up the hill, you're just getting tagged by all these AI...guys. That's a direction that we went, we were like "Whoa, that's way too hard."
2:10 - Steve Cotton: In this version, the wall's actually perpendicular to the hill, and in the final version of High Ground that wall has been rotated 45 degrees because it had 2 turrets up here as well as two turrets in the other tower, so there was a lot of firepower coming down on the hill. That got all simplified into one turret actually right above the gate, which we thought was not as brutal to the attackers. It's pretty obvious to us when we start working on these maps they have to be fun for the hundredth and the two hundredth and the thousandth time.
2:45 - Chris Carney: Watching people run through your map challenges a lot of the assumptions you made about it, like "I think people will use this hill for sniping," and then no-one uses it. Then you get great comments like "This map sucks," erm... "I hate this spot, I hate you..." (laughs)
03:02 - Steve Cotton: A lot of the time that you spend on these levels are in the details. Making sure that the run to a weapon is equal for different areas, getting the distances right for flag-captures.
03:13 - Justin Hayward: Because we make such an effort to place...titled objects in a level, like "The Waterfall", "The Bridge", "The Portapotty", people can say "The flag is down by the Portapotty." That immediately helps with the social aspect.
03:30 - Shouldn't tell them about the Portapotty...
03:45 - David Candland: In Halo 1 and Halo 2 we had these teleporters. Although it was a great way to get around quickly, it didn't provide as much inherent danger as the man-cannon does. There's almost nothing more rewarding than sniping a guy out of the air as he's man-cannoning across the map.
04:06 - Tyson Green: Whatever weapon that you start off every round with is going to really affect the decisions you make.
04:13 - Adrian Perez: There was this thing we didn't really identify in Halo 2, that if you spawn everybody with a dual-wieldable weapon like the SMG, it changed the game. People stopped melee, and people stopped throwing grenades, because when you're dual-wielding you can't do either of those.
04:41 - Tom Doyle: The Assault Rifle's design language really works well with the Master Chief. It has such a unique silhouette and look to it that we really didn't want to change what weapon was already Halo canon. But in terms of design and gameplay, it's been adjusted pretty considerably.
05:00 - Tyson Green: The weapon has kind of a shallow clip, so it came down to "How best do I use my melee attack," or "How best do I use my grenades in order to tip that fight a little bit over in my favor."
05:11 - Lars Bakken: The Assault Rifle works really well with the Golden Three things of Halo, which are weapons, grenades and melee.
05:19 - Curtis Creamer: The different kinds of weapons that you get to use now, the way that they're balanced against each other, the way the weapons are placed on a map, it really brings a certain something to the map that just makes it play right.
05:30 - Tyson Green: You have a situation which is very common: two guys get into a fight, is there a way to mix that up?
05:35 - Lars Bakken: Say you start getting hit by a Battle Rifle from behind. But say you have a Bubble Shield, you drop it, all of a sudden you're completely shielded from this guy who was firing on you. Or, you have a Trip Mine, and you realize a warthog is barreling towards you...you deploy the Trip Mine at the last second, and yes, you die, but you take out those damn bastards that just ran you over.
06:02 - David Candland: When you are done, as a group, playing together, the first thing you want to do is talk about it.
06:09 - Luke Timmins: Every game you play, you're gonna be having a saved film, that you can stop time, shift camera angles, re-watch that.
06:23 - Curtis Creamer: I think being able to share it with your friends makes the smack-talk even more powerful, because it's not just: "Oh, I just shot you in the head from across the map!" It's: "I just shot you in the head and let's watch it in slow-mo."
06:37 - Jaime Griesemer: It's really gonna help people improve their play if they can see it from the enemy's perspective. You'll be able to watch where they go, what weapons they pick up, in what order.
06:45 - Colm Nelson: We've done a lot of paper-reels, specs, that there's a significant part of that that's not finished. the challenge ahead of us now is to make sure that we get everything that we can in the game.
06:55 - Steve Cotton: We're gonna be what we're gonna be, and we think it's really good, but everybody's expecting it to be really good, so we gotta beat those expectations, somehow. That's what sucks. That's what makes me cry at my desk.