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Megapost: Project Halysis, A What-If Spinoff
By:Wahrer Machine
Date: 3/26/13 4:00 am

Alright, so so far we've gotten multiple people supporting the following titles:

Halo: Arena / Halo Arena Live
Halo: Bad Company: Battlefront 4
Halo 3 ODST 2: Orbital Drop Shock Troopaloo

Which is why I've assembled a mixed-media clusterfuck in attempt to explain the entirety of my what-if pet project, called Project Halysis. It would function as a spinoff game with campaign, multiplayer, forge and theater suites. Let's start with campaign.

Division Zero is a 10-mission campaign. It features:
-A Metroidvania-styled hub world.
-8 traditional campaign missions with a significant degree of openness and replayability.
-One final mission featuring a unique spin on the Rashomon-style player transitions.

The year is 2556. Chief's MIA, the Covenant have effectively disbanded, and the UNSC is desperately taking the time to try and rally the troops and repair their destroyed military. Interspecies relationships are anywhere from peaceful to in shambles: several Covenant species have small numbers working hand-in-hand with the UNSC, while on Hesduros, a Covenant world cut off from contact with the remainder (thus not being educated of the Great Schism or even the end of the war), Jul 'Mdama has made converts of the local population. ONI also has its issues with the Insurrection. It's going to take a miracle to get fortified in time for Chief's inevitable contact...

FACTIONS

The different factions in Division Zero are as follows.

UNSC: United Nations Space Command.

ONI: Office of Naval Intelligence. Working in tandem with a select few ex-Covenant members in the hopes of discovering Forerunner artifacts. Has a variety of experimental suits, soldiers, and even entire squadrons working at their disposal.

The Covenant: Disbanded.

The Remnant: A Covenant successor empire led by Jul 'Mdama, who are likewise searching for Forerunner worlds. Jul has sent a bulk of his splinter faction to follow ONI in their search. This ONI-bound splinter is called the Remnant, while Jul simply refers to his personal army as the Covenant, apparently.

Forerunners: A long-dead race who have left their mark on the galaxy through various artifacts, seen as treasures by less technologically-savvy races. Responsible for the creation of the Halo Array. ONI has gathered basic information on a sub-race known as Prometheans, which were the highest echelon of warriors of their time. The Didact was their military leader. Known for his genius in the war, him and his wife, the Librarian, looked into a myriad of solutions to combat the Flood. Reports of "Proto-Prometheans" designed to be mechanical replacements of the original warriors have been located, with the bulk of the Promethean military prowess still said to be contained in a Shield World for storage, in the event that the Forerunners ever rose to power again.

Flood: An ancient, extragalactic parasite bent on galactic singularity. Led by Graveminds, their intents are unknown. The Flood do not appear in Division Zero.

Precursors: Presumed extinct race that existed long before the Forerunners. Their technology was neural in nature, meaning the majority of it was destroyed during the first firing of the Halo Array. Some entirely mechanial "archrelics," holding a variety of offensive purposes such as security drones, were kept locked away in Shield Worlds by the Forerunners for study.

URF: United Rebel Front. An allied coalition initially of Insurrection. Surprisingly, these Insurrectionists have managed to fortify themselves in a crown jewel of a Shield World - that is, the Shield World where Didact conducted most of his military experiments, effectively making it the Forerunner equivalent of Reach in terms of the arsenal.

IEMNOS

Following near-dead signals being broadcasted, ONI was lead to the Shield World Iemnos. It is the closest Shield World to Sanghelios and effectively on the opposite side of the galaxy to Requiem. Initially, a search party was to be led by a barebones group of Spartan-IV prototypes and ONI scientists, but a gravity well drew the UNSC Icarus in, causing it to crash into a local mountain range. Not everyone was killed instantly: the survivors managed to form a somewhat-fortified ONI stronghold inside a mountain. The Remant and the newly-formed Rebel Front mopped up whatever survivors there were. While the Remnant technically had first-pickings at the Forerunner technology, they had no way to activate it. As such, the Remant and the URF formed an uneasy truce; the Covenant offered deadly military support in exchange for humanity's knowledge of the Human-Covenant War and their magic touch when it comes to Forerunner interfaces.

Jul, having heard this news, accepted the temporary truce. As he knew the Remnant would not be able to control the world on their own as attempted by the Covenant during a similar Shield World incident back in the days of Halo Wars, he simply looked to bolster his empire with promising new technology. Jul sent down simple squads, carrying plentiful weaponry, in an attempt to bring it to the local Engineers. Due to their obsession with augmenting tech, he knew he might have a chance of reverse-engineering anything powerful the Huragok could come up with.

This was unacceptable to ONI, and by minor extension the UNSC. Outraged, HIGHCOM or High Command sent the most ready squad they had available - ONI's titular Division Zero, a group of expert humans and Elites initially designated as prototype armor test subjects. Initially called Project Null, they come from a variety of different backgrounds within the UNSC and have no universal Spartan title. The 9 soldiers were given the suits they were most proficient with, allowed some degree of modification, and allowed their weapons of choice, effectively making the most deadly squadron funded by the UNSC. While having no formal ranks, Division Zero members are known amongst fellow soldiers as "Zeroes," "Divvies," and "Nullpunks" - from the German "nullpunkt," meaning zero.

Note that the "mixed media" nature of these concepts means that a variety of design elements, especially the latter four, may not be completely accurate.

From left to right:

Malcolm, Spartan DZ-4, is a pragmatic marksman who's worked for ONI for years performing a variety of assassination attempts. Sort of the antithesis of Emile, he's much more human, but at the same time far more calculated. His signature weapon is the ONI Hard Sound Rifle. He has a significant weakness in that he's inexperienced fighting Covenant, as he's mostly been used by ONI for quieting the rebel front.

Bishop or "Bish," real name Archie, is Spartan DZ-3. He specializes in automatics like the Assault Rifle and SAW. The oldest of the human Division Zero members at 39 (rough estimate accounting for cryo and augmentation), he's also the most seasoned, having fought in countless Covenant engagements. He has a strong relationship with Malcolm, though it's not given explicit detail. This connection has given him a Humbler Stun Baton, which he uses to great effect (and just happens to have deadly effectiveness against mechanical enemies like Prometheans).

Thom, originally a Spartan-III, is Spartan DZ-5. Having been monitored extensively by ONI, his death was staged to the UNSC, even to Noble Team, in order to put him in Division Zero. He's a close-combat specialist and without a doubt the fastest and most proficient Spartan in terms of dexterity in the squad. He makes extensive use of twin combat knives and the Battle Rifle.

Ice, real name Tyler, is Spartan DZ-2. Ice gets his name from bartending during peacetime, which isn't often. In the meantime, he's actually a hired mercenary given some of the Division Zero enhancements - he can leave anytime, but the pay's too good. It's a symbiotic relationship, as Ice's status as a resident deadeye has had him sniping targets with pinpoint accuracy for years, against both Insurrectionist and Covenant targets. While he doesn't have a "unique" weapon, per se, his Sniper Rifle named "Bolt" is outfitted with special electrical anti-materiel bullets, or "lightning rounds." Rather than the crisp noise of firing a traditional rifle, his gives off a sharp "clack" and has mild EMP and anti-vehicle properties.

Rosenda was replaced by Emile in Noble Team, and as a result she was accepted into Division Zero as Spartan DZ-6 after Thom's elaborate persuasion. The two likewise have a relationship. Rosenda has experience in CQC and Military Police, meaning her enemies have always been a little more human. She totes a Reach-era Grenade Launcher, and is generally unstoppable when paired with Thom on the field.

Molly or simply "Mol" is actually the largest of the Spartans, roughly Chief's size, and Spartan DZ-1, clad in gunmetal green JFO armor. She mostly keeps to herself, but not to the extent that it detracts from intel. She's seemingly the youngest of Divison Zero, but doesn't talk much about herself. She seems to be favored by Division Zero's CO, though the reason for this is unknown. Molly bares a lot of resemblances to John-117. Her weapons are generally barebones, such as the Magnum or her bare fists. Molly's armor is a prototype variant of the Mark-VI seen used by Chief during the events of Halo 4, hence her incredible strength and agility.

"Techie", real name Asin 'Tachim, is the local tech specialist of Division Zero, and Sangheili DZ-1. He wears modified Spec Ops armor painted UNSC colors (gunmetal gray and green) with an immediately recognizable faceplate of six blue optical dots. Despite his imposing stature, he's incredibly approachable. Division Zero has interspecies speech using translators. He generally wields a Plasma Pistol but is still experimenting with primaries, taking some favor to the Needle Rifle. 'Tachim is the closest thing the Elites have to a mechanic, being a vehicle specialist.

"Watt", real name Zire 'Wattinr (pronounced "zyer what-in-'er"), is a prestigious Elite General and the oldest Division Zero member. Taking into account cryo and interspecies differences, he's roughly equivalent to 43 and is the most decorated of the squad. His armor is very similar to the Elite General armor of Reach, though it's received some minor modifications, notably a lot of the gold bits being painted over in earthtones. While incompatible with Covenant ranking systems, it does bare significance - he uses the same colors as the UNSC Scorpion tank, transcending cultural barriers as a message of power. He is a boisterous combatant with armaments similar to a Brute Chieftan, usually wielding a Plasma Cannon turret with an Energy Stave as a backup. His role is similar to Jorge's and he has significant respect for Bishop due to his fatherly nature, similar to his own. Though it's not given ridiculous exposition, Watt offhandedly mentions having children on Sanghelios. He is arguably the only squadmate that could take Molly in a hand-to-hand fight.

Ivory is the Commanding Officer of Division Zero. While he works from the sidelines in the Campaign missions, he also doubles doing Pioneer work on Iemnos in the hubworld, where you play as him. While his weapons of choice in story and cutscenes are dual Magnums, loadout options in the Hub vary depending on personal preference. He's actually Spartan DZ-0, being the first canditate, whom thankfully was a success. Due to his seniority with the project and all that it entails (such as proto-suits and augmentations), he is in charge of their operations, though the rest of the squad views him as the leader, much like Buck. He apparently has a daughter who's also been fighting in the war.

THE HUB WORLD

Simply titled "Iemnos" as the initial mission, you begin in an ONI stronghold hidden under the mountain depicted in the simple painting above. The Forerunner structure at the peak of the mountain is named the Brevi Temporum. Its primary function is a quasi-dimensional comm relay, meaning it sends transmissions through slipspace, allowing for near-instantaneous communication with a variety of ONI's distant ships and even worlds, meaning it's ideal for a base of operations to send intel from. It is only capable of transporting communications, though - it can't just rip people through the fabric of space-time and teleport people. It has a few other basic functions, notably the "War Cathedral," which is a combat simulator which is where the game's multiplayer takes place. It can simulate a wide degree of environments and a haphazard version was created for the Infinity (though the Infinity's technical issues mostly limited it to UNSC research facilities and rocky Forerunner sites). Due to ONI's grasp of Forerunner tech, they have a limited degree of control over the teleportation grid spanning the interior of the Shield World. Your objective playing as Ivory is:

- Explore the Hub World to find your 8 squadmates. You haven't been knocked out or anything, they were just given objectives prior to yours. Once you manage to find a squadmate, they'll give you intel that you can send to HIGHCOM, allowing you to play (and, from the menus, replay) one of the eight missions. They appear in the same space that their mission takes place, though with some obvious differences given that they've cleared out the area already.

- Attempt to locate Research Logs from slaughtered ONI scientists throughout the map.

- Attempt to find Forerunner Combat Logs to enlighten ONI on the ancient war. These are similar to the Halo 3 terminals in nature.

- Attempt to find Forerunner Domain Terminals to learn about the construction of the Halo Array and the Forerunners' ultimate downfall. These are CEA/4-styled Terminals.

- Look for new technology. When I said the hubworld was Metroidvania, I wasn't kidding. While unavailable in multiplayer playlists, Ivory can find a variety of armor abilities for use in Campaign, which he can then cycle through to use, as well as Armor Mods.

These lists are far from complete and just provide some key examples.

Armor Abilities:
Thruster
Jump Jet
Jet Pack (Double Jump)
Active Camo
Bubble Shield
Regen Field
Auto Turret (Halo 3 version)
Hardlight Shield
Hologram
Backpedaler (Hologram that walks backwards)
Nullifier (Jams AAs and can temporarily short-out Prometheans)
Spotter (Works like Far Cry 3 spotting in Campaign)
Invincibility (10 second use, 45 second recharge time)

Armor Modules
Dexterity Module
Explosives Module
Grenadier Module (Allows for 3 of each grenade, like in ODST)
Ecumene Interpolation Module (Allows for use of Promethean weapons, grenades, and vehicles)
Mobility Module
Ammo Module

New Weapons
I'll get more into this shortly, but as I mentioned much earlier on, Jul 'Mdama, ONI, and the Insurrectionists have all taken to looking into Engineers to augment their weapons. If you can find new guns (indicated by a cutscene), they'll become available for you in the Armory at the center of the Hub (which you can respawn at).

In keeping with Metroidvania fashion, note that some of the better powerups will be guarded by "archrelics," which are Precursor security drones, mentioned earlier in the Factions section.

EXPANSION

Due to how freakishly large the hub world is, it doesn't let you explore all of it at once - it sections it off and will open up the second "rung," so to speak, if and only if you find your first squadmate. In this sense, the missions are still presented in a roughly linear fashion - you go through them initially in the same order. However, the further you get into the story, the more weapons, vehicles, data logs, terminals, and even powerups become available to you. The final size of the hub is difficult to imagine, especially for a Halo game. Note that you can use your squadmate's location (which doesn't change) to teleport to in order to get deeper into the hub, and like always, vehicles are plentiful.

You are also introduced to new enemies in the hub, generally before their encounters in the actual missions. Enemy layouts are arranged similar to the Borderlands overworld in that there are "encampments."

Additionally, similar to Minecraft in order to spice things up, Iemnos uses a speeded up daily cycle, being a shield world. When it becomes night, Sentinels and Prometheans alike go on patrol to scout for foreign contaminants. Note that even the enemy encampments will go into lockdown to avoid the Forerunner patrols. It essentially turns into something of a stealth game at night, because when you're caught, it turns into a Firefight-esque scenario where the shield world just starts throwing wave after wave at you until daytime. It gets so bad that you'll have Enforcers and Promethean Air Traffic Control after you if you don't find somewhere to hide quick enough.

THE ENEMIES

The Remnant (Covenant) aren't going to get too too much detail because a lot of their information is mostly unchanged; you fight Elites, Grunts, Jackals, Hunters, Droned, and possibly Brutes. It's worth noting that Hunters get two ranks again, and their two firing modes (single-shot and beam) are available as weapons now; single-shot as the Huntshot, and the beam shows up as a turret.

The Insurrectionists, likewise, aren't given significant detail yet simply because I haven't brainstormed too much about them. A few classes definitely wield contraband ONI weapons as well as Flamethrowers.

The Forerunner enemies are arranged into several different classes, carrying the Chess motif:

Pawns are Sentinels. These have two fairly simple variants; Minors, which use the default firing mode of the Oscillator (Enforcer's weak red needler) while the Majors have shields and use use the alt-fire of the Oscilaltor (sentinel beam). Revival Sentinels also exist but are rare, which will do nothing but attempt to revive the Knight that died farthest from where they spawned.

Bishops are Watchers. They have their appearances significantly changed to be more geometric rather than looking like weird tiki-fairy hybrids. They are incapable of doing damage themselves and operate on Prison Bitch rules: if you kill the Knight who "owns" the Watcher, the Watcher will work for you. The main four classes project a "booster" onto their Knight, with the options being Damage Boost, Overshield, Speed Boost and Active Camo. An uncommon fifth "Spotter" Watcher will occasionally be used by Snipers; rather than buff its owner, it uses Promethean Vision to find you, and will then hover around you and make an incredibly annoying droning noise to broadcast your position.

Knights have received some major changes. Rather than the bulky appearances of the past, they all start out in a base "Ambient Form" as depicted in the banner, which represents the Queen. These are referred to more specifically as Proto-Knights. They are mimetic in nature, imitating factions they come across, but refining the abilities of their weapons to gain an edge in combat. When angered or initiating a "mime," they will experience a terrifying transformation into their respective combat modes. They come in a variety of classes:

Archknights ("arc-knights") are the first you come across, literally meaning "Chief Knight." They have mimicked Ivory and are jack-of-all-trades in combats with above-average shielding, melee, power, and whatnot. They dual-wield Phase Rifles and have a roundhouse kick move to avoid assassinations.

Hacker Knights, pictured angered right on the banner, start out dormant and even ambient. They take cues from Elite Zealots and Brute Chieftans. When left alone, they do linear scans to look for weapons and vehicles to disassemble to eliminate clutter. When they find a target, their four hardlight "wings" will flutter around the object and disintegrate it in an almost gentle fashion. If they spot an organic target (like you), they go berserk and go from indigo to lime-colored, quad-wielding Energy Staves. It makes blind charges in straight lines at the target in an attempt to bisect it. Much like ODST-era Brute Chieftans, they have predictable AI and can easily be assassinated with proper planning. That's not the point, though. Their main purpose is to scare the shit out of you and get you trying new routes into combat to try not and get spotted. It's worth noting that Promethean AI takes cues from the Ark's final encounter, and all other Promethean enemies will simply watch if a Hacker Knight "challenges" you. If you somehow manage to kill the Hacker with a melee attack, all the Prometheans in the local area will flee by teleporting and leave you alone.

Uncaged Knights make use of dual-wielding a Gravity Gauntlet and a Phasebuster (Promethean Grenade Launcher/Sticky Detonator fusion). They very rarely get kills but can be a major inconvenience due to the stunning function and "stealing" projectiles (such as grappling a Rocket away from an unaware Archknight). It permanently has an exposed glowing skull and throws hardlight bees at you thanks to the grenades, meaning it's mimetic of Nicholas Cage Ranger-class Elites and grenadiers.

Beam Knights imitate Jackal Snipers by using a Crossbolt. Rather than remain stationary, it's constantly on the move, looking for walls or ceilings to mount to to get angles on you. After it takes 5 shots, it relocates. They have pitiful melee capabilities, so if you get close, it'll rotate its crossbolts around in front of you like propellers to make you keep your distance so it can run off. Standard Beam Knights require two hands to use the Crossbolt and won't drop anything when killed except rubble. In later missions, Major BKs will show up dual-wielding Crossbolts, and the wreckage when killed is just enough to form a Crossbolt for you.

Kings are Heavy Knights. Due to their immense power but low speeds, they're more like Hunters mixed with turrets. In some cases they'll simply shell your location to provide covering fire for the traditional infantry, while you have to take out power sources nearby in order to kill the Heavy. The two variants will either use two Beam Turrets (the laser turrets seen in Halo 4's campaign) or two Incinerators (the Incineration Cannon has been turned into a turret). You can pick up the turrets after killing them, much like the Hunters now.

Rooks are Heavy Sentinels... or vehicles. Once you manage to find the proper module in the hub, you can fight four variants of Heavy Sentinels; Encoders, Enforcers, Strato-Sentinels and Aero-Sentinels. Simply put, in normal conditions, putting enough damage into one of these enemies will simply destroy them. However, if you leave them near-death, they'll go idle and begin to repair themselves. Now, untouched, it'll just make the fight happen all over again. However, if you manage to get in close during this repair process, a certain prompt will show up.

PRESS RB TO DRIVE SENTINEL.

That's right, the Sentinels are fucking vehicles now. Encoders are Choppers. Enforcers are Enforcers, but have some slight modifications to make them slow shielded troop-transports. Strato-Sentinels are walking mech-tanks (sort of a Wraith-Mantis hybrid) that utilizes tripod legs to walk and a powerful charging beam weapon, and the vehicle form itself is called the Stratos. Aero-Sentinels are a new form of aircraft that are small, but incredibly fast. It has two twin cannons that fire EMP beams that don't do much damage but have incredibly high blowback, meaning it has the potential to royally fuck over anything else in the sky. Note that Aero-Sentinels are also ultra-dense, so ramming something with it would probably work about the same as dropping a tank on it. The Aero-Sentinel's vehicle form is called the Sylph.

THE WEAPON SANDBOX

Yep, full details! Bring tissues because you're going to be jizzing and crying at the same time.

Note that a buttload of weapons are Campaign exclusive. The multiplayer sandbox is and always will be 24 weapons if you count grenades. The campaign-exclusive stuff I've listed so far is, off the top of my head:

ONI Hard Sound Rifle
Humbler Stun Baton
Twin Combat Knives
SAW
"Bolt" Sniper Rifle Variant
Dual Pistols
Needle Rifle
Molly's Dual Motherfucking Fists

Now, for the multiplayer sandbox.

Loadout Weapons
Battle Rifle, 4-shot kill.
Carbine, 6-shot kill.
Light Rifle, 4/5-shot kill.
"Rook," Suppressed SMG Successor. Good against mechanical enemies - in other words, Rook takes Knight.
Plasma Rifle, CE Variant.
Oscillator, Enforcer Needler (Spiker) primary fire, Sentinel Beam alt-fire. Former's good on shields, latter's good on health. Mastering the alt-mode switch time is essential to getting speedy kills. Sound effects make it a wub wub gun.

No Armor Abilities, No Armor Mods. 2x Frag, 2x Pulse or 1x Each are options. No Primary/Secondary weapon restrictions. If you pick a weapon twice, it's the only one you spawn with, but you get double ammo for it. The distance/aim assist range for all loadout weapons is identical, meaning it ultimately boils down to personal preference and kill times. This, by extension, means the Light Rifle has received a slight nerf but also doesn't suffer from ridiculous flinch anymore.

Frag Grenades
Plasma Grenades. Detonation time is somewhere between Halo 1 and 2's.
Pulse Grenades. Holding down the left trigger until the grenade goes off will cause the explosion to do half the damage, but induce heavy vertical and vertical slowdown, great for trapping people. If a vehicle drives through the "core" of the explosion the grenade will short out early, but cause an EMP effect.
Phase Grenades. Default grenade is a Promethean Firebomb that uses "Hardlight Bees" while the alt-fire, initiated same way as a Pulse Grenade, is a Promethean Spike Grenade. The Phase grenade is depicted on the left of the banner.

On-Map Pickups

Magnum, CE edition. These are common throughout the map. Has the range of the Halo 4 Light Rifle.

Phase Rifle is a battery-operated 4-shot-kill precision weapon replacing the DMR, though it handles a bit like a Beam Rifle in terms of overheat timing. It has one of the fastest kill times in the game if timed right. Overheating normally causes obnoxious audio cues and a lens flare for all to see; getting a kill on the fourth (overheating) shot will mute the gun considerably. Scoping in with the Phase Rifle initiates a Power Saver mode for bad kids that uses less battery but takes 5 shots to kill. Its range is equivalent to the Magnum. The Phase Rifle is depicted on the right of the banner.

Plasma Pistol, Reach Beta variant.

Combiner is a new weapon, replacing the Needler and Shotgun. It's the closest thing to an ice weapon in the sandbox, using frostly needles dubbed "Blamethyst" instead of "Blamite," with the prefix Blam standing for "bilateral assault mitigation." It takes 7 needles to detonate. The big change comes in that it's now a semi-automatic instead of an automatic; it can fire as fast as the Plasma Pistol and still has homing, but you actually have to aim your shots instead of spraying. It also has an alt-mode in the form of a charge shot; a charged shot has a third the range a single needle does, but works like a homing shotgun. If it makes contact, it's an ensured detonation, but at the expense of eating up the entire clip.

Railgun is mostly unchanged other than a slight buff. What that is, I don't know. Possibly an increased reload speed or ammo capacity.

Huntshot combines the Halo 2 Brute Shot and the Fuel Rod Gun. A standard shot is a Halo 2 Brute Shot round, but skinned like a Fuel Rod Gun shot. There are six rounds per clip. If you perform a charged shot, it eats up three rounds of the clip. A charged shot looses a Halo Reach/4-era Fuel Rod Gun round, though slightly faster. The charge shot has some new unique properties: only a direct hit will kill, otherwise it's impossible. A direct hit will likewise provide an EMP effect if it hits vehicles. The surrounding blast radius is large (about that of a Rocket) but does little to no damage, instead having substantial blowback - to the extent that you can perform TF2-style Rocket Jumps with this gun.

Phasebuster is a handheld Promethean pistol; default fire is a Sticky Detonator round, alt-fire (hold trigger) is a Reach-era Grenade Launcher round, EMP and all.

Sniper Rifle is mostly unchanged.

Beam Rifle is mostly unchanged, save for toning down the aim assist.

Crossbolt is essentially a weaponized Beam Tower; it only has five shots in multiplayer, but unlimited ammo during its rare uses in campaign. It takes five seconds to charge up, and when fired the projectile is slow enough that, on even footing, you can outrun it. However, the projectile is just like a Halo CE-era beam tower... well, beam, meaning that it's lasting. The entire beam has a hitbox. Touching anywhere on this beam is an instant kill, meaning it's entirely possible to clothesline people instead of getting direct hits. When a Spartan is hit by the projectile, the beam just keeps going through them, rather than stopping. The Spartan is instantly killed and vaporized, but 5 "dimensional corpses" are spit out of the point of derezz, and if any of the corpses touch another Spartan, they'll be killed too, and the cycle continues. The major problem is the high charge time, and while reload time is instant, you can't fire another shot until your existing one dissipates (meaning it has to hit a structural surface like a floor or building). It's worth noting that the Crossbolt shot doesn't acknowledge vehicles, meaning you can snipe/clothesline drivers and leave the vehicles relatively intact. Due to the "dimensional corpse" function, it will also completely annihilate vehicles with passengers like Falcons.

Rocket Launcher is mostly unchanged, but if it's locked on to aircraft, the audio cue changes to sound way more high-pitched, like a firework.

Energy Stave replaces the Energy Sword and the Gravity Hammer. In its default state, you dual-wield Swords with basket hand guards; meaning you swing twice as fast, but two melees are required to kill. If you hold right trigger, you sort of merge them into a large, Forerunner Hardlight Halberd, which operates pretty much exactly like a Gravity Hammer - it does more damage and has more range, but eats up more battery. Holding RT again will revert to dual Swords.

Gravity Gauntlet is a Jetpack replacement. You can grapple onto designated "hardlight hooks" which can be placed in Forge. In addition to this, you can reel in distant weapons, and stun players. Stunning will apply both vertical and horizontal stasis, meaning you can stun airborne players to completely kill their momentum, and then let go of them so they fall to their deaths. A noteworthy side effect is that the tractor beam given by the Gauntlet has a lasting gravity field that will absorb projectiles such as live grenades or even Rockets; veteran players can use this to protect their teammates or "fix" their Grenade throws by boomeranging them, while players facing enemies with Gauntlets can chuck a grenade or two at the trail to blow up the user instead of letting them get to a power weapon first.

THE MULTIPLAYER

Much like Infinity, the multiplayer is simulated in the "War Cathedral" of the Brevi Temporum. There are 11 maps:

3 small, 4 medium, 4 large. 4 UNSC, 3 Covenant, 4 Forerunner.

The 3 small maps are all remakes; The Pit, Midship, and Lockout. They are all also built using Forge Canvases more akin to Sandbox; the UNSC Canvas is horizontally-oriented, the Covenant Canvas is cube-shaped in proportions, while the Forerunner canvas is more vertical. They are all equally large, however.

The medium maps are meant to support 4v4 with two symmetrical, two asymmetrical.

The same applies for the 4 large maps, though they're similar to Battlefield in size, attempting to support 16v16 because of the generational leap.

THE PLAYLISTS

ARENA

8-Way FFA. Rumble Pit. Slayer / Oddball / King of the Hill / One King
One King works like Juggernaut - if you kill the King, you become the King.

2v2. Team Doubles. Slayer / Oddball / One Flag / Regicide

4v4. Team Slayer*. Slayer / Slayer Classic / Regicide / Ambassador
Slayer Classic simply uses a barebones weapon set.
Ambassador is a Regicide variant. Kills still earn points. However, there are also three plots on the map - Green Plot, Blue Plot, and Red Plot. They all spawn at start and are "locked" after their initial capture. Capturing a plot rewards the team with points equivalent to 5 kills. Only the King can lock down plots. Once a plot is captured, the King and all teammates that were in the plot helping to capture it are rewarded with a respective powerup - Green Plot is Overshield, Blue Plot is Speed Boost, and Red Plot is Damage Boost.

*Note that this playlist is still called "Slayer" because you earn points for kills even in Regicide.

4v4. Team Objective. CTF / One Flag / Assault / One Bomb

4v4. Team Control. Oddball / King of the Hill / Territories / Three Plots

BIG TEAM

16v16. Big Team Slayer.

16v16. Big Team Tactical. Extraction 1 Plot / Extraction 3 Plot / Dominion / Domain
Dominion receives some changes so that it isn't a total power weapon fest like it is now.
Domain is a one-sided variant of Dominion where the Attackers start out in Sudden Death mode and the Defenders start out with all bases captured. When the Attackers manage to retake a base, it's permanent.

16v16. Invasion. Invasion / Invasion CTF / Dreadploughts / Lich King
All Invasion games are two rounds except for Lich King.
Invasion is Spartan vs Spartan. Rather than have the ridiculous weapon escalation of the past, TIER 1 is Pistol starts, TIER 2 are your custom loadouts, and TIER 3 uses a Phase Rifle primary (think DMR) with your secondary being whatever your main custom loadout weapon is per loadout (so either BR/Carbine/Light Rifle). Tier 1 is capturing a hill, Tier 2 is capturing a hill, Tier 3 is Capture the Core.
Invasion CTF Uses the same properties, and is essentially three-stage One Flag. The Attackers spawn next to a Core, which they must take to Point 1. After dropping the Core off, the Attackers pick up a second Core which they must take to Point 2, and the cycle repeats for the final Core.
Dreadploughts or Dread Plots is also one-sided and works like Three Plots. The Defenders spawn in an airborne Lich, which has a tractor beam allowing for infantry access. The Lich will use its main cannons on one vehicle at a time, meaning a concentrated effort is required to attack it. Damaging the Core of the Lich will not destroy it, but will disable the cannons. The Attackers must attempt to capture the first Plot, at which point the Lich will move to a second location, Plot 2 will spawn inside of it, and Tier 2 begins. Likewise for Tier 3. On Tier 3, Desecration plays. If the Attackers win, the Lich explodes.
Lich King is a bit like Crazy King. A neutral Lich spawns in the center of the map with a hill inside, and both teams will attempt to control the hill. Once that hill runs out of time, the Lich moves to the next location and Hill 2 spawns. This can use up to 7 hills.

16v16. Safe Havens.
Safe Havens is a class-based Infection variant mixed with Dominion elements. Humans have a few basic classes and must attempt to fortify bases for defense, while the Infected have 5 classes to choose from and must convert humans.

TL;DR

ARENA
8-Way FFA. Rumble Pit. Slayer / Oddball / King of the Hill / One King
2v2. Team Doubles. Slayer / Oddball / One Flag / Regicide
4v4. Team Slayer*. Slayer / Slayer Classic / Regicide / Ambassador
4v4. Team Objective. CTF / One Flag / Assault / One Bomb
4v4. Team Control. Oddball / King of the Hill / Territories / Three Plots

BIG TEAM
16v16. Big Team Slayer.
16v16. Big Team Tactical. Extraction 1 Plot / Extraction 3 Plot / Dominion / Domain
16v16. Invasion. Invasion / Invasion CTF / Dreadploughts / Lich King
16v16. Safe Havens.

The 10th playlist is a rotating variable. While it can be used to promote things like SWAT or Grifball or Action Sack, it will generally be used for DLC promotion or corporate whoring like the Infinity Challenge. The 10th playlist is always Double EXP.

To fill the niche of some of the fun lists like Action Sack, dedicated servers could be an option, with 343 having some "Official Servers" for the more common requests like Team Snipers. While dedicated server playlists would still provide you with equivalent EXP, the main 9 playlists would be ranked, giving some incentive to play "officially" rather than just stick to the server browser.

THE UI

This is mostly a preview of things to come. I won't go super-elaborate with it now, but my main focus is streamlining the ability to create custom games; the primary layout for games would be using this method. Hitting RB would expand the selected list and show all your options allowing you to change settings from the root menu rather than having to go down page after page to change things. Also notable is the addition of the "Thumbrumbler" option for specific settings, such as Player Traits. When you get to a menu that has lists like that, there are up to 10 variables shown on-screen; these are represented by the D-Pad buttons, ABXY, and the two triggers. For example, Player Health, Shielding, Shield Rate, Shield Wait, and so on. Hitting the respective button once will show a description of said trait; however, double-tapping it will open up an additional part of the UI, controlled with both thumbsticks. You use the right thumbstick to make general changes or slides through the UI (for example, Damage Resistance could go in increments of 10) while you use the left thumbstick for precision tuning (going in increments of 1).


Messages In This Thread

Megapost: Project Halysis, A What-If SpinoffWahrer Machine3/26/13 4:00 am
     Re: Megapost: Project Halysis, A What-If Spinoffscarab3/26/13 8:21 am
           Re: Megapost: Project Halysis, A What-If SpinoffStephen L. (SoundEffect)3/26/13 11:56 am
                 Re: Megapost: Project Halysis, A What-If Spinoffscarab3/26/13 1:15 pm
                       Re: Megapost: Project Halysis, A What-If SpinoffStephen L. (SoundEffect)3/26/13 2:28 pm
     Re: Megapost: Project Halysis, A What-If SpinoffChrisTheeCrappy3/26/13 10:48 am
           Re: Megapost: Project Halysis, A What-If SpinoffWahrer Machine3/26/13 1:41 pm
     This gives me a funny feeling in my pants.zoojoo3/26/13 6:47 pm

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