In Halo Waypoint's newest feature, Office of Halo Intelligence, Josh Holmes, creative director of Halo 4 said this:
"Jessica has asked me to contribute to a Halo 4 developer diary as a recurring part of our weekly Bulletin. While we won’t be able to share secrets that would spoil any of the Carefully Planned Reveals™ that we have coming down the pipe, we will give you our impressions of some of the work that is going on behind the scenes here at 343. We’ll also provide our thoughts on anything that we do make public as part of the lead-up to the game’s launch. I realize that isn’t a lot at this stage, and trust me, this is hard for us, too. We are working on so many things that we can’t wait to share with you, but patience is in order. Good things come to those who wait. All will be revealed in due time. And assorted other clichés.…
Right now the team across 343 is shaking off the last remnants of our turkey-induced stupor and whipping ourselves into fighting shape for the year ahead. It’s going to be a huge one. This will be the culmination of a multi-year journey that has already filled several cylindrical space-canisters with delicious blood, sweat and tears. Now we’re entering the crucial final stretch in which we will ready our baby for release into the wild. It’s an exciting time but stressful, too, as we place pressure on ourselves to live up to your expectations. The good news is that the game is already looking great and fun to play. So, as we ready ourselves to give you your first real look at Halo 4 in the months ahead, we can only hope that you, too, will like what you see."
I highlighted the important parts for those who don't want to read the whole thing. "While we won’t be able to share secrets that would spoil any of the Carefully Planned Reveals™". This could be in reference to the "massive, original marketing campaign" mentioned in the 343 Sparkast 009. "several cylindrical space-canisters". This is actually quite interesting.... The Flood's original form was found in "serveral cylindrical space-canisters" on mysterious automated space ships from outside the Milky Way. Could we be exploring Flood origins more in Halo 4? Or the Reclaimer Trilogy at all? "give you your first real look at Halo 4 in the months ahead". This absolutely screams E3 (June 2012).
343 Industries also announced on Halo Waypoint that McFarlane Toys, makers of many Halo action figures, will be making action figures for Halo 4. The release of the figures will happen like this:
- Master Chief
- Secret Figure 1
- Secret Figure 2
- Secret Figure 3
Boxed Figure: Frozen Master Chief and cryotube
- Secret Figure 4
- Secret Figure 5
- Secret Figure 6
Boxed Figure: Secret Boxed Figure 1
This gives a hint as to when new info/game will come out. I believe we will get substantial new info around August, most likely E3. I'm also 90% sure the game will come out in November. But what really tells us that it will release in November is this. 343 later went on to say, "Halo 4 Series 1 will be launched in August 2012, and will expand around the game launch in fall 2012, continuing into 2013." So there it is! They said "the game launch in fall 2012"! Thats much more definite than "Holiday 2012".
And finally, there has been a recent leak posted on the Halo Waypoint forums, claiming to be images of a Halo 4 Alpha Build. The thread was swiftly locked, and the links removed. The images looked quite legit, actually. I managed to save the pictures before the thread was locked. You can see them below, and to view in larger size, just click on them.
So, there you have it. Halo 4 story hints, and a possible release window. I'll keep you posted in the coming months, and expect to see far more in the late Spring/early Summer.