Thursday, 17 January 2013

343industries Pulls the Plug on Halo 2 Vista

You'd be forgiven for skimming over it, but at the bottom of today's Halo Bulletin was a small note detailing the demise of Halo 2 Vista.
We’re sad to report that the service end-date for Halo 2 PC Multiplayer will be February 15, 2013. We’ve been monitoring the population for months, and it’s been peaking consistently at approximately 20 players or less. Those that own this game can continue to enjoy Multiplayer over LAN after that date; however our network services will be turned off at that time. We love you, Halo 2 PC, and you will live forever in our hearts.
And like that it was gone. Halo 2 is still considered by many to be the definitive Halo multiplayer experience and the day that players can no longer get that experience will be a dark day for the series. This will also mark the first time in the series that some achievements will become impossible to .. err .. achieve. So if you've still to get any of those elusive Halo 2 multiplayer achievements now would be the time to do it.

It is a curious decision to disable support for Halo 2, matches are peer to peer so there's no game hosting servers and there's no stat tracking or file shares taking up server space either. The cost to keep it running must be negligible. I can't help but feel that rather than pulling the plug they could have tried to invigorate it instead. It would have been easy enough, adding the achievements to your career on Waypoint would be the simplest way, but adding the game to Steam would have given it a new lease of life too.

I think the main thing that has killed Halo 2 Vista is that it's a nighmare to get it running on Windows 7 or 8, I don't think the numbers have dwindled because of player apathy, but rather that most people can't run it on their main PC.

It's a real shame, and it will be sorely missed. I'll be online to send her out with a bang, I'll see you there.

- Cowboy Out.

1 comment:

  1. Disappointing news. I haven't played it online for a couple of years, but it really was a great experience, I've always loved the novelty of having peer to peer multiplayer wrapped in the Live experience. RIP Halo 2 Vista!