Taken from my previous thread introducing Elite and ODST Ops; http://www.343indust...nd-other-ideas/
This version has more details than the other, and is more developed. The flaws are recognized and I hope to get more fixed if there are any.
I noticed that when you are in the cutscenes with your character you are given a fixed personality. The point of being your own character is having your own story. So I worked around that to still allow for the player(s) to be integrated into the cutscenes of their Ops missions.
While customizing your character you can choose which voice you want. At the launch of Halo 5 there would likely be 5 voices per race per gender. That's 30 voice actors in all. Others may be unlocked or DLC. How this breaks down for Ops missions is that the voice you use also determines the personality of that character. In the previous thread you would be placed in the cutscene based on which player you are. Player 1 would be talking to player 2, and both would be discussing things with the shipmaster, while player 3 would be standing aside, possibly looking at the view. Luckily with this thread added to it, the dialogue would be enhanced with your character's voice.
Each race would be given 5 voices:
- 2 cool personalities
- 1 leader personality
- 1 [email protected] personality
- 1 other
This shapes the dialogue to what your character says during each moment. Let's say player 3 approaches player 4 about said discussion. Player 3 has one of the cool character voices for his ODST. It kind of resembles a comic relief character. Although, player 4 chose to use the [email protected] personality. Player 3 mentions stuff about having a dog. Player 4 just doesn't care. However, if player 4 used a cool personality too (maybe the same one lol, who cares), then the conversation would continue.
This adds a lot of variables to a mission's coding, but it's worth it. You could be playing the mission with your friends and the same moment would feel ENTIRELY different had you done it yourself. And there are more variables if you choose to fight with 1 player or with 2/3/4 players. Player 3 and 4's conversation wouldn't even exist if you play solo. And I have a feeling that the new xbox is going to allow for 6 players to be playing online together in Ops missions. I doubt that, but I think it's going to be an upgrade.
So that means 4 different cutscene possibilities, with 30 different conversation scripts per character per role per cutscene, with up to 4 roles per cutscene. How many possibilities is that? If the new xbox does support 6 player campaigns then that's 2 more cutscene possibilities entirely added to the list. Not to mention, you need the interaction variables, that say; player 4 doesn't say anything about dogs, player 3 wouldn't be saying "I know right!" after that. Who says "I know right?!" after not even getting a response? Sergeant, you're drunk. Go home.
I can't even begin the math of the whole thing, but with the interactions that's like 4 times more than what is said above. It looks like 343 will have to get their actors to voice each starting line, with their conversation going into 30 different ways. If someone else interacts later in the cutscene (or a new event happens) then that goes into 30 more directions. But the acting's the easy part. It's just a lot of work.
But keep in mind that 30 stands for all Spartans, ODSTs and Elites. There would be 30 different variables during the last mission or episode. On a regular basis you'd have 5 different voices for each race per gender. That's 10 different possibilities for each interaction within each cutscene.
So that means this: 343 will have to get their actors to voice each starting line, with their conversation going into 10 different ways. If someone else interacts later in the cutscene (or a new event happens) then that goes into 10 more directions. This will be done for each campaign for Spartan Ops, Elite Ops and ODST Ops. There, that doesn't seem so bad.
Now for the other stuff. Ops missions intertwine during the last mission or episode. This would create an ultimate experience for the players who like to use their different characters in all three of the stories. But what about the stories? When do they take place?
Personally, I wasn't fond that Spartan Ops took place 6 months after Halo 4's campaign. It was good, but that should NOT be the case for Halo 5. If the flood arise, where's the biggest threat coming from? If the flood return, human-covenant warfare halts in all events involving the flood. Why would Infinity and a bunch of ODSTs be focusing on putting the Covenant to justice when their existence is being threatened again? Six months after the campaign isn't great for that. Humans and Covenant wouldn't be fighting each other at that time. The flood would be at an amazingly high advantage by that time. The whole campaign would have to be flood, which isn't a Halo game. That's a flood game.
So for the sake of what I just mentioned, Ops campaigns should be happening from multiple perspectives along with the campaign. In the previous thread I mentioned that it would be a good idea to have the first campaign level be focused on the Arbiter being threatened, resulting in the events of the game starting. Then it moves on to Chief. Elite Ops would start directly after that first level, with your group being introduced and the players would be introduced to the shipmaster and all that stuff. Away you go on your missions. ODSTs would start from an alternate beginning that doesn't involve the canonical events at all. They could be doing something else entirely, until you start operating alongside the background of Chief's missions. This improves the first release of the flood again. Each campaign (all 4) would have the player experience each first strike - which is usually the worst time, which is good for the game.
Let's say the Elite Ops first mission starts somewhat close to the Arbiter's campaign story, and branches off for a few missions. This way you can alternate from canonical events to just arresting (or hunting) brute terrorists or protecting territories or homelands. Then the flood come about and your shipmaster is ordered by Thel 'Vadam to aid in urgent matters. You join in the main events once again.
The ODST storyline could go into two different directions, one could be like the Elites' storyline by being elsewhere when the flood is released, or your ODST squad could already by stationed on the same mission when the flood are released. Assuming that Jul M'Dama will be involved with the release of the flood, your squad could be taking part in Jul M'Dama missions by that time.
Infinity's Spartan fireteams will have front row seats to the release of the flood, no question about that. That is, if Jul M'Dama is involved.
As far as the ODST squad storyline goes, it could be offensive or defensive - but most of all, tactical. Storm Covenant in Halo 4 seemed to be defensive as a whole, but offensive through opportunity. They don't seem to be threatening humanity since following Halo 3, but things could go wrong every now and then. Your ODST squad would be sent on practical missions that aren't usually offensive, but have a real purpose. I don't have any ideas for this, but I can assure you that players would like to have this kind of experience once again.
Offensive missions could be trying to recover some forerunner technology that is guarded by Covenant. Defensive missions could be you guarding the forerunner artifact. Perhaps the ODST storyline would have the oracle of said installation involved. I'm sure there would be missions around him/her.
There is but one problem that still bugs me, and that is how other NPCs will call you names. In Halo 4 you are constantly being called Crimson, which works. However, your player will be involved in cutscenes (according to this thread). You will have to be called individually accordingly to the voice acting of the characters.
I have three solutions to this problem (that might make Halo feel a bit different, but cool anyway):
- You can use codenames that are customizable for your character. (Different for each race)
- Your ranks will be used to describe your name.
- Actual names (or last names) that are also customizable for your character. (Different for each race)
With a codename you will be called a certain name when someone's line mentions the player's name. This will again add many variables to the dialogues of the cutscenes. It helps for calling players in the middle of the missions, though.
Calling you by your rank would likely be more plausible and realistic. If a marine calls you over saying "Hey, Sergeant!" Then you can understand that they know you are a sergeant but not your name, and it would also be more proper to call you by your rank. Unfortunately, this is how cutscenes will work too. Although, your ODST and Elite team/squad could have a name by itself like Crimson does, but I doubt that would seem at all realistic. Your Spartan might need to be called upon as well, for realistic purposes.
And that should be all. For now.
Comments and debate plz!