I was gifted these cool Halo passes!

My friend @CarlClendenin sent me these passes a couple of days ago. I was ecstatic to receive them. The RTX one has that nice Halo 4 Lanyard, while the Halo 4 Global Championship badge is just all sorts of awesome. Not to mention, Carl also included the elusive collectible pin that you could only get there.

Halo passes HFFL wmWhat makes these even better are that they aren’t just typical badges, but staff and exhibitor badges. They will hold a special place within my Halo collection.

That pin was one of only two that I need to complete the collection of the pins from last year. There were three others that I’m not sure if they were actually released or not. So that count could be four more needed…

Here are all of those pins, followed by the ones I have (checked), the one’s I’m not sure were made (with a ?) and the one I still need, with the yellow box around it.

Halo 2013 SDCC pins

If anyone knows of those three I have question marks for, PLEASE let me know. As for the Sarah Palmer one, if anyone has one or knows where I can get one (I’ve checked eBay, it’s not there anymore…), PLEASE let me know. Thanks!



Halo Concept Art: Halo Reach Environments Part 3 of 3

Alirght then, here we are at the last part of the Reach environments I have to share at this time.  It’s also the last part of the Reach concepts I have to share. Tomorrow will start the Halo 4 environment articles.

Let’s take a look at the rest of the reach concepts.

Part of the New Alexandria cityscape, this concept is fairly clean for a marker rendering. Many of the buildings in those missions had a fairly pristine look to them, even while under attack by the Covenant. This particular concept serves as a great point by which the environmental artists can draw from.haloreach_environment_powerhouse
The concept above should be pretty familiar if you were playing Halo 3, while waiting for Halo Reach. It was used as a marketing tool. Powerhouse, for which this concept became the basis for, changed a bit in look from this. However,it did maintain the base structure and bridges. The right portion is what changed the most.
Did you know that this beacon can actually be seen in the game? While playing the middle portion of “Ling Night of Solace” fly your Sabre beyond the Space Station and you’ll see a similar beacon beyond it. Without a background or another object to give this scale, this beacon could have been any size the artists wanted it to be. While many times it’s a good idea to show scale, with certain objects, you might want to leave it up to the viewer to determine the size. In this case, that’s what happened. The only thing to give a clue to the size is the radar dish at the top right corner.haloreach_environment_spacestation
This is a concept of the interior of the Mutliplayer map “Anchor 9” It’s much more dark than the final version. I actually prefer this. In my opinion, darker spaces to play matchmaking in tend to focus the gamer to the task at hand. Otherwise, if you’re like me, I spent time, even during matches, exploring and looking at the details of maps. LOLhaloreach_environment_sword_base_garage_by_isaac_hannaford
Here we see the basement of Sword Base. This area is seen twice in the campaign and can be seen somewhat on the Firefight map “Courtyard”. Though it’s tougher to see in the latter due to shielding getting in the way. This concept looks VERY much like the final version. I’d make a guess that this was further along in the design process than an initial sketch or color rendering.haloreach_environment_sword_base_interior_01_by_isaac_hannaford
Now this concept is interesting. It reminds me more of a scene from Halo CE, than Reach. This was to be a part of Sword Base. For whatever reason it was cut from the game. I’d love to see this space reused in a future Halo title. I do like the contrasting lighting. It clearly conveys that the lighted areas are the main hallways, while this room is just an offshoot of it.haloreach_environment_sword_base_interior_02_by_isaac_hannaford
Another of the marketing concepts, this Sword Base rendering might have you a little dizzy with it’s varied slanted bridges and angles. I’m a bit curious as to why the artist chose a cold blue theme for this concept. Perhaps it’s to help convey the location of Sword Base, which we know is in one of the coldest temperaments on Reach.haloreach_environment_sword_base_interior_03_by_isaac_hannaford
One of the rooms within Sword Base, this brightly lit concept was use, though parts of it were. I find it a little strange that there is a reception desk in the middle. It does add some realism though.

While this piece is marked as something from Sword Base, I can’t see where it would fit in.  It looks as though the artist was going for a modular look for most of the sketches herein.  The bottom middle sketch has me intrigued the most. I wonder what that device would have been used for?
And last but not least, the Traxus tower. Versions of this were seen as many buildings in the city. It was fun to fly around/above them with the Falcon. It’s plainly obvious that this skyscraper is very tall. The gentle horizontal lines in the left black portion tell us that those are individual stories within the building. So how tall is this tower? I hope for the next game we have a couple of missions or more that require flying, be they in a cityscape or in space.

Should I find more concepts from Reach, I’ll post those at a later date. I hope you’ve enjoyed the look back to Bungie’s last Halo game and hope you’ve seen some new things and have been entertained by the articles. If you’ve liked these, let me know by replying below.

Okay folks, tomorrow we move on to Halo 4’s Environments!

New Halo Pinterest finds.

Every once in awhile, I peruse Pinterest to see if there are any Halo pics or graphics I haven’t seen before. Usually I find a few here and there. Today I looked and while only finding two new to me, it was still nice to find something out there, that I hadn’t seen before.

Here are those two graphics:

UNSC posterDidact posterBoth are well done. Simplistic approach to each, yet clearly recognizable for what they are.

To see these and MANY more Halo pics and graphics, check out my Pinterest page. You can always find it on the side bar to the right on the main page. For now though, you can go straight HERE to check it out.

Enjoy and repin away!!!



Halo 5 race car in Forza 5!

A presumable Forza AND Halo fan, @Forza_ElMutem, made this in Forza using the newly released graphics for Halo 5 Guardians.

Forza halo 5 carPretty sweet! I’m not much of a racing gamer anymore, but this would be something that might get me thinking about it again.

Have you made a Halo themed race car in Forza? If so, I’d LOVE to see it and share it here on the blog. E-mail me at: [email protected] with your design.



Halo Concept Art: Halo Reach Environments Part 2 of 3

Today we explore yet more of Reach’s environment concepts. There’s a good mix with a few pieces of line art. As usual, click on pics to make bigger. And feel free to download these too.

haloreach_environment_environment_concept_05The vista isn’t in the game. Is this New Alexandria in the distance? Perhaps Sword base? Regardless, the ominous clouds tell of the foreboding attack to come. This in and of itself is a great piece of art, never mind that it pertains to Halo.

haloreach_environment_environment_concept_06A scene form the campaign, this could be a representation of several places. It looks similar to a road in the first mission, “Winter Contingency”. It also looks like a road to Sword Base, but with vegetation instead of mostly snow and ice. One thing this concept has that wasn’t in the game at this scene is the darkness and fog. It seems Bungie artists really wanted to convey that something bad was going to happen.

haloreach_environment_environment_concept_07Peaking out high above the invading Covenant army. While this concept is dark as well, it’s discernible what is taking place. With the presence of many purple lights, the Covenant has amassed a massive army with which to destroy Reach.

haloreach_environment_environment_concept_08Another scene from “Winter Contingency”. Once again fog prevails. Add in rain and darkness and you get a sense of a very dismal day. A beautiful piece even in it’s darkness.


Here we have a concept of what I’m assuming is Sword base. However, the many buildings that stretch out form it do make me think New Alexandria as well. The muted color palette seems to state this is dawn and the sun is starting to crawl it’s way towards the structures.

haloreach_environment_flag_room_by_isaac_hannafordInside the factory on Boneyard. While this space changed in the final version, this piece shows the direction Bungie was going for. Very industrial. This could be any number of manufacturing plants on Earth today. It’s that balance of sci-fi and realism that I love about Halo. It’s something that COULD happen in the future.

haloreach_environment_manassas_by_isaac_hannafordAh, New Alexandria. This many tiered view shows some of the heights that the city reaches to. In the game, this level is much more brightly lit. The sharp lighting on the middle structure is quite deliberate as the artist wants us to focus on that particular area. The many and varied angles might have been lost if not for the expert use of perspective in this piece. Very well done!

haloreach_environment_oni_door_frames_by_ryan_demitaVarious door concepts. These could be anywhere. From Sword Base to New Alexandria and the like. Without color it makes the doors utilitarian. Depending on what color scheme would be added to these, the doors could take on a different look and feel altogether, despite the underlying base art of the structure.

haloreach_environment_outpost_01_by_isaac_hannafordAnother concept of the base at the end of Winter Contingency. This is a good semi-fleshed out concept. Not quite finished, but certainly not a sketch. I wish it were possible to recreate this in Forge. I’m hoping Halo 5’s forge will be extremely robust and will have plenty of varied textured pieces to it, so that something  like the above will be possible.

haloreach_environment_outpost_02_by_isaac_hannafordThe base that might have been. Would this have been the Winter Contingency Base or Sword Base? Looking at the concept, it really could have gone either way. Okay forge fans, let’s see someone make THSI! The art while over all blueish grey has a detail, texture, perspective and shading that is well placed. 

haloreach_environment_outpost_03_by_isaac_hannafordAn early concept of the satellite array. Even though it lacks color, this rendering is able to tell the scale of the parts involved. In art such as this, it’s VERY important to get perspective right. The addition of highlight and shadows in the right places can make a subject leap off a page, so-to-speak.

haloreach_environment_outpost_back_room_01_by_isaac_hannafordThis appears to be a concept for the final room of the Winter Contingency mission. This area was of course heavily changed for the game, though there are still quite a few elements form this concept that made it in.

haloreach_environment_outpost_hallway_01_by_isaac_hannafordA small splash of color as seen in the above concept can really change the feeling of a subject. In the piece above, your eye is drawn more to the warmer colors. It’s as if the artist is saying, go into the hallway beyond, it’s safer there.

haloreach_environment_outpost_radar_01_by_isaac_hannafordThe last concept for part 2 of Reach’s environments shows the satellite dish form different views. The railings on the side view really add to the description of size of the dish. Without those, the dish could have been much smaller. 

Okay, I’d have got this article done sooner, but was pulled away by family to go see a showing of X-Men: Days of Future Past. (I suggest see in it if you’re an X-Men fan. I liked it very much. Oh and be sure to stay ALL the way through the credits…)

Tomorrow (or rather later today), I have the third of the Reach Environment articles posted. Then Saturday, we’ll explore the environments of Halo 4.