Bungie Weekly What's Update
Short, but remamrkably sweet, since we detail the new matchmaking playlists, reveal some of the new gametype tweaks and look at the schedule for stat resets and more.
Hella dudes ask,
How's the playlist update coming? When can we expect it to go live?
The playlist update is still undergoing a test pass but things are progressing nicely. We're still hoping to have it ready for your enjoyment in just a few more days - most likely middle to late next week. In the meantime, remember that you and your friends can play the new maps as much as you like via custom games. Check out our forums if you're looking for more map owners to play with!
Lots of folks wonder,
What's included in the Playlist updates?
This is just a taste. A lot of things the vast majority of players won't notice, but here's one or two of the more visible and necessary changes. Note that NONE of these has been done casually. All of this has undergone testing and tweaking. Thanks to Jeremiah and Sketch for the new info.
Sudden Death has been removed from all Assault variants to prevent griefing. If you think that griefing was a legitimate tactic, you are simply going to have to learn other basic skills. You all knew that doing it was bogus, aggravated the other teams and was fundamentally imbalanced. Did we have any responsibility there? Sure. And we've fixed it. Thing is, we accept all our responsibilities, while griefers continue to defer theirs. Stop cheating, stop griefing, and don't cry about how it's our fault for making it possible. We had issues with our designs that did make it possible, but nobody forced you to exploit them. Especially when other teams DON'T do it. Griefers who complain about OUR responsibility to stop them from cheating should dial 911 and ask for a Waaahmbulance.
Round time for Assault variants has been increased globally to give teams a better chance to score since sudden death is gone. That should mean more epic struggles, and some maps, like Headlong, will become very, very interesting…
…especially since we've removed Banshee from CTF and Assault games on Ascension and Headlong. Why? Because griefers will surf the bomb to unreachable places anyway, just to be jackasses.
No more Plasma Pistol / Battle Rifle ownage in Slayer games on Beaver Creek or Colossus - we now use Human weapon sets for Slayer variants on those two maps. This will be controversial and we understand there is some small skill required to use the combo, but frankly it has become tiresome on those maps. It takes far more skill to win without that combo. More skill = more fun, right?
Motion Detector (radar) has been removed in all head to head playlist variants. This one I'm personally ambivalent about. Partly because of my inability to look at radar while fighting/getting owned. Partly because it sometimes adds a layer of strategy (creeping on objective based games, being a good example) but we hear the thronging masses. Loads of noise demanding its removal and almost total silence on the opposite opinion.
The majority of game variants on Coagulation and Burial mounds will now start players with Battle Rifle and an SMG - exceptions include games such as Team Snipers, Team Rifles or other variants which feature specific weapon sets. THIS one we expect universal approval on. Now that I can actually shoot the Battle Rifle with some modicum of skill, I will be putting it to good use. We've done more palatable Battle Rifle starts on the newer maps too, but since they're not in matchmaking yet, you'll have to take our word for it.
We've added King and Oddball variants to Head to Head to encourage more conflict, less hiding and more variety.
No more Phantoms. You'll have to custom game that one. Phantoms was a rarity anyway. Now it's just super-ultimate-rare. That is to say., gone.
We've added new CTF and Assault variants which feature Covenant vehicles just for variety. The Spectre is making an appearance and should make for some interesting encounters. Shouldn't really change balance too much though.
When is the leaderboard reset going to happen?
When are the Halo 2 Xbox Live leaderboards being reset?
The leaderboard reset is tied to the playlist update, so we anticipate this will happen around the middle to late next week. Players should be prepared for their levels to reset at some point next week. We can't say with 100% certainty due to unknowns with the test process and Xbox Live dependencies. For now, plan on this all going down next week. And for the record, your friends lists will NOT be reset nor impacted in any way whatsoever. The leaderboard reset will only impact the level that appears next to your name in the ranked playlists.
Just to clear up one odd rumor about this – we're resetting EVERYONE'S stats, not just the top 1000. Don't know where that rumor came from. Also, remember that your rank is only designed to match you against players of similar ability. It serves no other purpose. The upcoming contests we plan to run will be based solely on merit – not your rank. We will in fact ignore rank and look at legitimate match results. Rank whoring and cheating show up like a red flag, and will result in immediate banning from matchmaking. So don't do it. You've been warned.
Mr. Robbins asks,
Hi, I own multiple Xboxes. Do I have to purchase the new maps (assuming I want them immediately and not when they become free) for each separate Xbox I have, or is there a way I can dupe them to my other machines?
I'm afraid so. The maps are sold on a per-box basis, much like downloadable music, or in fact, any kind of software. This is done to prevent piracy of course; otherwise every school in America would be passing around one memory card with a Live account on it. Like it or not, the new content requires thousands of man hours, resources and other costs to produce, and even though we love puppies AND babies, we're not a charity. That said, when they are eventually free, in summer, you can go nuts and fill up as many Xboxes as you like.
I was playing a game and it was lagging when ever I got close to the other team .once it went into blue screen and then when I got out there was a guy how came up behind me and killed me from behind when I was sniping.
Jerks can still cause standby to happen, they just can't use it effectively, as they did before the autoupdate – this is a hardware issue, not a software problem. It can happen with any game attached to a modem. However, we are also much, much more efficient at automatically spotting this behavior and we've been banning offenders from matchmaking forever. They are also ejected from games for doing it. Basically it's a total waste of time.
What's up with the RSS feed? It seems sort of sporadic. Am I doing something wrong?
Our RSS feed allows Halo 2 players to incorporate Bungie.net Halo 2 stats into their own websites (among other things). However, due to higher-than-expected usage, we've temporarily reduced the number of games the RSS query returns, but are actively pursuing a way to return it to its former glory. Please bear with us and we apologize for the inconvenience.
Hey. I'm sure you get enough annoying questions but can you tell me what the record for the most suicides is because my friend and his friends held a game and they got 10680 suicides. Is that a record or a waste of time.
If it's in a custom game, it's an impressive statistic. But also a complete waste of time. Also, play around in custom games by all means, but don't do it in matchmaking, or you could be banned.
Kittenz asks ,
What about the as yet unreleased maps. Any news?
Hopefully by next week we'll have some new details
Finally, Bossman asked if I would customize his Scion with a Mister Chief. Sure, here you go: