Halo 2 very almost actually had an ending. A full cinematic that actually explained what the hell we had been doing that whole time.
We’ve all been there – that moment when your jaw drops and you stare blankly at the screen feeling straight up pissed about what you have just witnessed.
Those that have played Halo 2 will know exactly what I mean by that. For those that haven’t played Halo 2, let me wax lyrically a little about how Halo 2 is responsible for one of the world’s biggest gaming WTF moments in history.
Halo 2 spoilers follow (obviously). So, you battle for hours through many a bad guy ridden corridor and interact for what seems like an eternity with that gigantic Mohawk-sporting croc-a-monkey only to discover that once you beat him all you get is the big stiffie.
The bad kind – basically, the screen goes black and the music begins to play – it was at this point we all thought that something had gone wrong with our consoles. Nope, Microsoft shafted us. That is it – the promise from Microsoft was that we will get to finish the fight in Halo 3 but that wouldn’t have had to have been the case if they had given us a proper ending in the first place.
But, hold up, apparently they did originally plan to give us a proper ending – it had explosions, revelations and everything. So, what happened?
Recently, former Bungie composer Marty O’Donnell revealed in an interview with IGN that the above was not at all how the game was originally going to end.
The real ending sounds infinitely cooler that what actually happened. According to O’Donnell the original ending was to be “grand and glorious”. The ending basically included Master Chief finding the Ark of the Covenant on Earth and having to team up with the mighty Arbiter to put down the Prophet of Truth.
Now that sounds like something I could really get behind. According to O’Donnell the studio had even gone as far as commissioning the actors for the extended scene and had recorded all the relevant dialogue needed for the grand finale.
So, what happened?
O’Donnell goes on to explain that there was some unforeseen difficulty with production, meaning that they had to resort to the cliff-hanger option.
“It was so painful for me and for everybody at Bungie to throw that all out. We just couldn’t finish the plan, it was just impossible So, everything got re-jiggered, and we had the cliffhanger to end all cliffhangers.”
Even the developers didn’t want that terrible ending. It sounded like it could have been super good.
It was a little depressing, mainly for the reason that Halo was kind of the benchmark for console games at the time. For them to cheat us out of an ending we thoroughly deserved just didn’t sit right with the fans.
How many of you out there were more than a little annoyed at the end of Halo 2?