I Love Books

Dave Szulborski has authored a book called [url=http://www.immersivegaming.com/about.html]This is Not a Game,[/url] detailing the phenomenon of Alternate Reality Gaming, a good example of which was the ilovebees.com phenomenon of last year, which was allegedly related to a little game called Halo 2.

You can read an extract of the book [url=http://www.immersivegaming.com/about.html]here [/url]and get some insight into the often baffling ARG scene.

Halo 2 (Xbox) 1/11/2005 11:22 AM PST permalink

Team Xbox Reader's Choice Awards

Teamxbox, who beat us in the Humpday Challenge last week and are therefore jerks, have published the results of their [url=http://features.teamxbox.com/xbox/1008/TeamXbox-2004-Readers-Choice-Awards/p1/]2004 reader's Choice Awards[/url] and Halo 2 won a couple.

But you can read the results for yourself [url=http://features.teamxbox.com/xbox/1008/TeamXbox-2004-Readers-Choice-Awards/p1/]right here.[/url] And we don't really think the TXB guys are jerks. Much.

Halo 2 (Xbox) 1/11/2005 10:10 AM PST permalink

Halo 2 Stats Failures (Updated)

Over the last few days, Halo 2 stats have been slow and missing information occassionally. A bunch of bad things happened at the same time to cause this, but the good news is that most is repaired. However, there is a lingering issue with the RSS stat feed, so we have turned that off until we can nail down that problem.

We apologize for the downtime, but the RSS feed has suddenly started crushing our web services servers. We're looking into the problem, and it should be up again soon.

Halo 2 (Xbox) 1/10/2005 3:00 PM PST permalink

Halo 2 Stats Issues

Today you may have noticed lots of strange things on bungie.net. These included "Internal Server Errors," vanishing stats, "Web Exceptions," and general slowness. We've been working the problem all day, and things have gotten better, but we're still closing out the last of the problems, so you'll still see some occasional sputters until we get it fixed, hopefully by day's end

So, that means you can stop emailing us about it - we know your stats have vanished on bungie.net. Rest assured that you haven't lost anything. It is just a case of the web servers having difficulty accessing the data.

Halo 2 (Xbox) 1/7/2005 3:21 PM PST permalink


Halo 2 was voted game of the year and shooter of the year by the readers of 1UP.com, for which we are very grateful. Lots of other awesome games won awards too and you can read about them [url=http://www.1up.com/do/feature?cId=3137663&did=1]here![/url]

What are you waiting for? Go check out [url=http://www.1up.com/do/feature?cId=3137663&did=1]1up.com's Best of 2004![/url]

Halo 2 (Xbox) 1/7/2005 9:40 AM PST permalink

Rumble Pit Rankings: UPDATE

After a period of investigation, we’ve discovered what caused the rankings in the Rumble Pit matchmaking playlist to be reset on January 1st. We have isolated the problem and we can revert player rankings to the point before they were reset.

After some discussion, we decided that this would benefit more players than it hurts, but rankings achieved since Jan 1 will be reset to either their status on December 31, or for brand new players, simply reset to level 1. This server update will take place at 2am PST tomorrow morning, in order to minimize disruption to the service. During this period, stats for those Rumble Pit matches will be unavailable. We realize this process will cause some aggravation – especially for players who’ve been working since Jan 1 to regain their ranking, but we feel far more players will benefit than suffer. For those who are annoyed, we genuinely apologize. Fixing the rankings should also alleviate the mismatches that inexperienced players have had to suffer through.

Halo 2 (Xbox) 1/3/2005 7:24 PM PST permalink

Rumble Pit Stats Reset

Bungie is aware that rankings on Rumble Pit in Halo 2 were reset on January 1st. We can tell you this was an error and not a deliberate reset. However, we are still investigating the cause and possible solutions. We apologize for the inconvenience and irritation caused and we will make every effort to provide more data and explanation as we further investigate the problem.

Again, watch this space for more details.

Halo 2 (Xbox) 1/3/2005 12:54 PM PST permalink

Weekly What's Update!

As you relax and enjoy playing Halo 2 over the Holidays, we wish you all the best and a Happy New Year. Meanwhile, we answer some of your pressing questions and insult your artistic intelligence with a new Mister Chief. Kinda. [url=/News/TopStory.aspx?story=weeklywhatsdec30]Read the update here.[/url]

There are questions about cheats, rankings, bugs and lots more, so go [url=/News/TopStory.aspx?story=weeklywhatsdec30]read the update now![/url]

Halo 2 (Xbox) 12/31/2004 10:11 AM PST permalink

Halo Vs. Half Life Comparison

Noting that both games are near-essential purchases, the GameDaily Staff has written a feature-by-feature comparison of the PC and console shooters. Naturally we're biased, but we think they picked [url=http://www.gamedaily.com/xbox/halo2/article.asp?section=news&article_id=8093]the right game[/url] although some Bungie staff admit to playing their PCs more frequently of late.

Check out the full article [url=http://www.gamedaily.com/xbox/halo2/article.asp?section=news&article_id=8093]here.[/url]

Halo 2 (Xbox) 12/30/2004 10:22 AM PST permalink

Gamespot Reader's Choice Awards

The onslaught of year-end voting continues as Gamespot opens the polls for their [url=http://www.gamespot.com/gamespot/features/all/bestof2004/day7.html?q=1&tag=gs_hp_topslot_click]2004 Reader's Choice[/url] awards. Halo 2 is nominated in three different categories so please head on over and cast your votes and help us take one more step towards our uber goal of world domination!

Another shameless plug to get votes for Halo 2 in an online poll? Yup! Though some may argue our winning streak hit its peak with the coveted Spike TV awards, it's these reader's choice scenarios that mean the most to us. Tear away the glitz and glam and politics and it's just fans voting for what they liked the most. And that makes us warm and fuzzy all over (in an entirely different way than the Webmasters homebrewed egg nog). Thanks to all our fans for your ongoing support and a kick ass 2004. Have a great holiday!

Halo 2 (Xbox) 12/24/2004 9:59 AM PST permalink

Getting Started With Halo 2

Playing Halo 2 is simple enough, but you can get much more out of your Halo 2 experience by exploring our in-depth guide to all things Halo 2, Xbox Live and Bungie.net related right here. Find out about Gamertag linking, Playlists, stat-tracking and much, much more!

Read Full Top Story

Halo 2 (Xbox) 12/20/2004 2:55 PM PST

Chris Butcher Talks Networking!

Our networking genius and world-famous SuperKiwi, Chris Butcher, is interviewed by [url=http://stuffo.howstuffworks.com/halo-network.htm]How Stuff Works[/url] about the delicate complexity of Halo 2 network code.

Go read the interview with Butcher [url=http://stuffo.howstuffworks.com/halo-network.htm]right here[/url].

Halo 2 (Xbox) 12/15/2004 12:55 PM PST permalink

Sweet Jumpin' Spartans!

The eponymous [url=http://www.jukesbox.com/]Mr. Jukes[/url] has beaten Bungie to it - that is to say, posted a number of [url=http://www.jukesbox.com/]cool jumping videos[/url]. Some are easy, some are tricky, some obvious and some obscure. Most of them have a purpose and it's fun to see some of the crazier jumps.

Keep an eye on Bungie.net too, as we'll have some nifty insider tips that even Mr. Jukes hasn't thought of yet.

Halo 2 (Xbox) 12/13/2004 1:29 PM PST permalink

Halo Holiday Cards

Presents are cool, but cards are even better. Why? Because old people put cash in them! Our Halo holiday cards are even better than cash, however, featuring amusing Halo inspired holiday messages, and are available right now at [url=http://www.bungiestore.com/productcart/pc/viewPrd.asp?idcategory=14&idproduct=262]The Bungie Store[/url].

There are tons of other great holiday gift ideas to be found, from clothes to action figures. Check out the selection at [url=http://www.bungiestore.com]The Bungie Store[/url].

Halo 2 (Xbox) 12/7/2004 12:08 AM PST permalink

Halo Makes the Walk of Game!

Thanks to you guys, we've been inducted to the Metreon's [url=http://www.walkofgame.com/inductees.htm]"Walk of Game"[/url] which is of course the gaming equivalent of the Hollywood walk of fame. Thanks to your voting, we actually made it! Thanks!

You can check out the other inductees right [url=http://www.walkofgame.com/inductees.htm]here![/url]

Halo 2 (Xbox) 12/3/2004 3:25 PM PST permalink

Vote, Vote, Vote!

Seems like 'tis the season to be polling. Everyone is collating votes for their games of the month, year, decade etc. 1up.com is now accepting votes for its [url=http://bestof2004.1up.com/]Best of 2004[/url] awards and you can if you like, vote for Halo 2 in a few categories.

Again, to cast your vote, simply visit [url=http://bestof2004.1up.com/]www.1up.com[/url] and click a few times. It's actually a quite lovely voting interface.

Halo 2 (Xbox) 12/3/2004 9:28 AM PST permalink

Archive Stats with XML!

Lots of players have asked us if there's a way to archive older stats. Well, not through Bungie.net, but it looks like our users are starting to come up with their own solutions using the XML feed available at Bungie.net. One apparently brilliant player has come up with a [url=http://www.isamrad.com/Halo2RSS/#Install%20steps]neat solution[/url].

The [url=http://www.isamrad.com/Halo2RSS/#Install%20steps]website[/url] allows you to download an Excel spreadsheet and synchronize it with (some of) your stats, allowing you to maintain records as big as you like. Since this solution was created by a Halo 2 fan, and not Bungie Studios or Microsoft, we cannot be responsible for its content or functionality, we're simply mentioning it as a neat use of the XML data from Bungie.net.

Halo 2 (Xbox) 12/1/2004 2:35 PM PST permalink

Xbox Live Playlist Update!

We've been gathering a lot of feedback since Halo 2 was released and today we're happy to announce that we've released some significant updates to the Xbox Live [url=/Stats/page.aspx?section=FAQInfo&subsection=playlists&page=1]Matchmaking Playlists[/url]. Read on for the full scoop!

We've had a great first few weeks playing Halo 2 on Xbox Live but over the course of our day to day play we found a few things that needed to be tweaked and improved upon. Our own experiences, along with tons of feedback from you, resulted in todays large Playlist Update. Please remember that our Xbox Live matchmaking system is dynamic and is controlled behind the scenes by a small file we can upload to the Xbox Live servers. We have the ability to make small or large tweaks to the games and maps that you play when participating in a matchmade games behind the scenes, with no impact to the players. Unlike an actual auto update like the one we released a few weeks ago that is downloaded and makes code changes to the game itself, playlist updates consist of a single file that exists on the actual Live server. Officially, this kind of update is referred to as a "TMS", or "Title-Managed Storage." Each title has a little storage space on the Live servers where files like a playlist can live. You can read the full list of gametypes and maps for each playlist [url=/Stats/page.aspx?section=FAQInfo&subsection=playlists&page=1]HERE.[/url] Please note that while you will see a lot of different games, i.e. Oddball, King, etc.., these are all weighted much less than the primary games (listed at the top of each playlist). Here's a quick overview of what has changed: 1. Two brand new playlists - "TEAM SLAYER" - You wanted it, now you've got it. All team slayer, all the time. This is a new ranked playlist so everyone will be able to battle their way to the top of the leaderboards all over again. "RUMBLE TRAINING" - This is a new [i]unranked[/i] playlist that shares the Rumble Pit playlists. The best part about this new playlist is that you can enter into it with guests and even as a party of up to 8 players. 2. Freshening Existing Playlists - The various gametypes and maps for the existing gametypes have been freshened up and the various weights have been adjusted to create more variety and take advantage of more of what's available. Foundation has also been added where applicable. 3. Big Team Battle - You can now enter this playlist with a party of up to 8 players. However, please note that entering into playlists witih large parties may result in longer wait times as the game tries to find another party of 8. We'll be monitoring this. 4. Major Clan Match - This playlist now supports parties as small as 5 and the team imbalance has been changed to 1. So, no more 6 vs. 8 matches. 5. Game Times - The match time limit for nearly every gametype has been extended to allow for more carnage. 6. Miscellaneous Tweaks - A number of other little things have been adjusted like removing the Banshee from the Head to Head matches on Ascension, removing the glitched "Sudden Death" from some Assault games that could cause the match to last forever and we even added a CTF variant featuring Wraiths and turrets on Coagulation. [b]PLEASE NOTE : If you happen to be playing Xbox Live when the playlists were released, you will need to sign out and sign back in again before you can see the new playlists.[/b] Thank you to everyone for your [url=/Forums/topics.aspx?forumID=5576]feedback[/url] and we'll continue to monitor and update our playlists to further improve the Halo 2 Xbox Live experience.

Halo 2 (Xbox) 12/1/2004 11:16 AM PST permalink

Halo 2 Basics

Playing Halo 2 is simple enough, but you can get much more out of your Halo 2 experience by exploring our in-depth guide to all things Halo 2, Xbox Live and Bungie.net related right here. Find out about Gamertag linking, Playlists, stat-tracking and much, much more!

Read Full Top Story

Halo 2 (Xbox) 12/1/2004 10:21 AM PST

Work at Bungie!

That's right, we don't just talk about games, we also [i]make[/i] them. And we can't do it on our own, so we're [url=http://www.bungie.net/Inside/Page.aspx?section=Jobs&subsection=Main&page=1]HIRING NEW PEEPS![/url] So, maybe you're qualified, or you know someone who is, or maybe you just want to know more.

Either way, you can go check out our current [url=http://www.bungie.net/Inside/Page.aspx?section=Jobs&subsection=Main&page=1]available positions[/url] and see what tickles your fancy.

Halo 2 (Xbox) 11/30/2004 3:42 PM PST permalink

New Wallpapers!

New wallpapers are available, courtesy of our very own "Prettyboy" Shishka and they're themed around ODSTs and Brutes. They're quite lovely and you can [url=http://www.bungie.net/Games/Halo2/Gallery.aspx?Gallery=Wallpaper&page=2]Download Them Here[/url]. The wallpapers are, as usual, available in various sizes and resolutions.

Why are you still reading, when you could be downloading wallpapers? [url=http://www.bungie.net/Games/Halo2/Gallery.aspx?Gallery=Wallpaper&page=2]Download Them Here[/url].

Halo 2 (Xbox) 11/30/2004 2:57 PM PST permalink

Greatest Halo 2 Player Found?

Although we can track stats for multiplayer games, we can't do so for Campaign, which is a shame, because one talented player has managed to complete Halo 2 in Legendary mode in "about ten hours." This beats our tester's records by a considerable amount and is to be admired without question.

Some players are barely able to get past the second boarding party on the very first level in less than three hours, so to complete the entire game on Legendary in ten is incredible. The skillster in question is one Charlie Sinhaseni from [url=http://www.gamingnexus.com/Review.asp?ID=627]GamingNexus.com[/url] and you can read his review and legendary exploits [url=http://www.gamingnexus.com/Review.asp?ID=627]HERE[/url]. Thanks to the many Bungie.net readers who pointed out this incredible feat, and the many players who admired Mr. Sinhaseni's ability to do this largely on foot, according to his review. Kudos!

Halo 2 (Xbox) 11/30/2004 10:55 AM PST permalink

Stat Attack!

Now that Halo 2 has been played for a while, our stats database is starting to get bloated and gassy. As part of ongoing maintenance, we're going to be purging older stats – specifically the rich data like the Game Viewer. The less detailed stats, basically kills, deaths and assists, will be kept for much longer.

If you have older stats that you care to keep a record of, the simplest way to do so is to take a screenshot of the data you'd like to retain. The dates and amounts of info have yet to be decided so we suggest that if you're a clan or a serious stat freak, you start archiving your favorite old games now. This process will be an ongoing part of the weeding and pruning necessary to keep Bungie.net running smoothly. You have been warned! Spread the word!

Halo 2 (Xbox) 11/29/2004 4:39 PM PST permalink

Spike TV Awards

Spike TV's annual video game awards will air on December 14th, and feature the best games of the year, lined up in their sparkly finest to win awards, or cry themselves to sleep after losing. You decide who wins and you can vote for your favorite game [url=http://www.spiketv.com/events/vga2004/]Right Here![/url]

Might we suggest you [url=http://www.spiketv.com/events/vga2004/]VOTE[/url] for a little game we like to call Halo 2?

Halo 2 (Xbox) 11/29/2004 11:55 AM PST permalink