halo-4-gathering-dust

Crunch time for billion-dollar Halo franchise as Valve show how it’s done

By On 9th August, 2013

This week saw the start of the main event for Valve’s 3rd annual Dota 2 tournament; The International. With a prize pot of almost $3m and a first-week viewership of nearly 800,000, things have never looked so good for Valve’s flagship free-to-play MOBA (Multiplayer Online Battle Arena). It’s a stark contrast for Halo 4, a once record-setting franchise whose popularity is now flailing in a Europe-wide popularity slump for first person shooters. This struggle was made even more apparent when the European Gaming League axed Halo from its 10th LAN event in the UK after the sci-fi shooter failed to meet its target of entering just 8 teams.

Halo 4′s hopes to reignite its position as a leading brand in eSports now firmly rest on Multiplay’s 49th Insomnia Gaming Festival which takes place later this month. With greater team interest, a free-for-all event and Multiplay’s knack for pulling in the sponsors, it looks like Halo will once again be a LAN fixture. To its testament, its made even more impressive due to the fact that Halo 4 is an Xbox 360 exclusive and is debuting at a primarily PC based LAN event.

But Multiplay and the Halo community need this to work; they can’t afford for another low turnout that will cause any future events to seriously reconsider Halo’s involvement. We recently spoke to Michael Valentine, co-founder of European Halo community TopMid.eu, to ask him just what this means for the Halo community and the importance that a well run and popular event would have going forward.

Michael told us, “To put it bluntly, it’s massive. With the support we’ve seen from yourselves (Editors note: ConsoleDeals.co.uk are backing the console franchise and are sponsoring the event) and others, the community have really got behind this event, and we’re seeing a lot more hype than we normally do for Halo events.”

“Hopefully the numbers are strong and we can put on quite the show for people watching at the venue and at home on the stream. We’ve tried to make this event all about the community, allowing them input in all the major decisions to do with the tournament, so they know this event is all about them.”

Gemma Cooper, a member of TopMid.eu’s admin team, echoed Michael’s sentiments: “I can’t thank the people involved enough for putting their faith behind our community and the staff team, especially ConsoleDeals, Astro, Hauppauge, SquidGrip and Multiplay of course!”

“We never expected the support for Halo to become so large again, especially after games like Call of Duty just completely dominate the scene. This therefore is slowly becoming one of the largest Halo events in Europe since the days of Halo 3.”

It seems that Halo has finally back on the UK stage, and is looking to grab it’s chance with both hands.

You can read the full Q&A with Michael Valentine and Gemma Cooper where we discuss i49 and the future of Halo here.

Gary Garside

Gary is an Editor at Gamepad and ConsoleDeals.co.uk. When he isn't reviewing games or discovering Console bargains, you can usually find him playing Racing or FPS games, occasionally dabbling in the odd RTS or MicroSim.

  • spideynut71

    “Crunch time for billion-dollar Halo franchise as Valve show how it’s done”

    What a ridiculously stupid headline. This has NOTHING to do the “Halo franchise”, other than using the name and game for their competition. If MS wanted to do their own Halo tournaments, they could annihilate Valve; they’d treat it the same way they do Halo marketing/launches…sparing no expense. But no, MS and 343 will show VALVE “how it’s done” where it matters: game development and sales. Valve has been lazy as hell in recent years, with no follow-ups to LFD2 OR Half-Life 2 ; they need an event like this, to remind people that they’re even still a part of the video game industry…aside from raking in $$ off of digital downloads.

    • ImprovV993

      Yes, boooo Valve for not milking their franchises!!!!!!! Boooooo!!!!!!

      Someone is jelly.

      PS: Dota last month had over 5 million unique players. This month it’s up to 6.3 million and counting. DOTA 2 is becoming one of the most popular games out now.

      And MIcrosoft is showing Valve hwo it’s done with game development? Oh really? *Looks at Portal 2′s 95 metacritic.* Yup they suuuuure are.

      Oh and what’s this? Leaks that they’re working on a next gen Source engine and L4D 3? Ya don’t saaay.

      12 year olds should stop commenting.

    • Gary Garside

      I cant argue your point that Microsoft *could* do wonders for Halo if they wanted to.

      The fact is though that Microsoft simply haven’t done any of that, instead leaving a franchise that was desperately in need of support after a developer change to languish in MP obscurity.