Rumoured HD update may delay the release of the next core entry.
It appears that Microsoft could be readying a HD update of Halo 2 for a November release on Xbox One.
The Anniversary update of Bungie's Halo sequel first made an appearance on Neogaf, where it was suggested that the game would launch this year to coincide with the ten year anniversary of the original's release. Interestingly, it also suggests that the game will come complete with Halo beta access, which if true might suggest that the next game in the Master Chief story arc isn't going to make it out until sometime in 2015. The Neogaf post also makes mention of a live-action mini-series, similar to Forward Unto Dawn.
Sources close to CVG were able to partially confirm these claims, suggesting that the game was in development, but unable to verify the beta and live-action elements of the post.
In 2012, before the release of Halo 4, it was denied by 343 that they were working on updating Halo 2. Though with much of the work on Halo: Combat Evolved: Anniversary completed by studios Sabre Interactive and Certain Affinity, perhaps something similar is happening here. CVG suggests that this this is the case.
We've long suspected the a HD version of Halo 2 would make an appearance at some point, and this information comes as no surprise. What makes it particularly interesting is the prospective inclusion of beta access to Halo 5. If that proves accurate, and the Halo 5 beta is set to follow the release of a Halo 2 update, that could mean we won't get the next core entry in the series until sometime in 2015.
While that's counter to what MS said in the past in their previous Tweet, they could have been talking about beta access all along - and therefore we'd still be getting our first taster of Halo 5 in 2014.
Given that many Halo fans will be waiting on the reemergence of Master Chief before they invest in an Xbox One, that might prove to be a blow for Microsoft in the long run. Would beta access and a polished version of a decade old game be enough to persuade those fans to part with their cash? Time will tell.