Halo 2 says goodbye in February (but not for good)

halo 2 goes offline in february starting a quiet year before the inevitable anniversary edition

The passing of the PlayStation 2 isn’t the only event in the past month that marks the true end of this millennium’s first video game console generation. Just over eight years after the game’s record-breaking release in the fall of 2004, Halo 2 is going offline once and for all.

“We’re sad to report that service end-date for Halo 2 PC Multiplayer will be February 15, 2013,” reads an update at the Halo Waypoint blog, “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 forever live in our hearts.”

Close to 2.4 million copies of Halo 2 for Xbox were sold during the game’s first day on sale in November 2004, earning Microsoft $125 million and making it the biggest entertainment release (in terms of sales) in history at the time. Its record has been broken many times over since, by its successor Halo 3 first, and later Activision’s Call of Duty series.

Halo 2 has been on life support on the PC. The Xbox edition of Halo 2 was taken offline in April 2010, but a number of players actually refused to sign off from the game, keeping it open until well into May. In the parlance of the series, Halo 2 fans will be forced to finish the fight for good come February. Though they likely won’t have to stay offline for too long.

Microsoft is no stranger to re-releasing products when there’s profit to be made, and with Halo 2’s tenth anniversary coming up at the end of 2014, a Halo 2 Anniversary Edition in the vein of 2011’s Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary Edition, seems like a given.

Rumor is that Halo’s current steward, 343 Industries, is already hard at work on an HD remaster of the game. In July it was reported that 343 was giving Halo 2 a facelift to that of the first game. With a 2014 release date, it may well look even prettier given that Microsoft will be pushing its rumored new console by that time.

Absence makes the heart grow fonder, you devoted 20 Halo 2 players. Take a year off!


Has it really been 17 years? The past, present, and future of the Xbox

From DirectX Box to 720, it's been a long, strange trip for Microsoft's Xbox gaming console. Here is what happened, from its odd beginnings to the rumored Scarlett console with streaming.

These are the must-have games that every Xbox One owner needs

More than four years into its life span, Microsoft's latest console is finally coming into its own. From Cuphead to Halo 5, the best Xbox One games offer something for players of every type.

The best of the last generation: Our 50 favorite Xbox 360 games

The Xbox 360 thrived during a generation where games were plentiful. Here's our list of the best Xbox 360 games of all time, including all game genres and even a few special indie hits.

How do Nintendo Switch, Xbox One X compare to each other? We find out

The Nintendo Switch is innovative enough to stand apart from traditional consoles, but could it become your primary gaming system? How does the Switch stack up against the Xbox One?
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: Robots that eat landmines and clean your floors

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it's fun to gawk!

Tired of the same PS4 annual releases? Try one of these indie games instead

While big budget games rely on practical innovation, indie games dive head first into new, unexplored territories. If the quirky and unusual appeal to you, take a look at our list of the best indie games on PS4.

Joker in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is freezing some Nintendo Switch units

There have been reports that Joker in Super Smash Bros. Ultimate is causing Nintendo Switch units to freeze. Even with the glitch, players may still try him out, amid rumors that Persona 5 will soon arrive to the console.

This list of PlayStation 4 exclusives puts its competitors to shame

The PlayStation 4's game library and incredible selection of exclusive games could make anyone with an Xbox One or Nintendo Switch think twice. Here's our list of the latest and greatest PS4 exclusives.

Your PlayStation 4 game library isn't complete without these games

Looking for the best PS4 games out there? Out of the massive crop of titles available, we selected the best you should buy. No matter what your genre of choice may be, there's something here for you.

These Xbox One exclusives are the definition of quality over quantity

Xbox One has a prestigious collection of handpicked titles that you can't play on other consoles. Here are the latest and greatest Xbox One exclusives, including some that are also available on PC

Get over here and learn the proper way to deal a Fatal blow in Mortal Kombat 11

Mortal Kombat 11 introduces the Fatal Blow system, which gives players with low health the chance to shift a fight back in their favor. Here is how to perform a Fatal Blow, and how to defend against one.

25 awesome indie games you should definitely be playing right now

These days, some of the best video games are made by independent studios. Here are 25 of the best indie games, whether you prefer grueling dungeon crawlers or otherworldly, meditative adventures.

Retailer may have leaked The Last of Us Part 2 release date

A Slovakian retailer published a listing for The Last of Us Part 2, including a potential 2019 release date and box art. This leak comes shortly after an announcement that filming for the lead actors is complete.

These awesome free-to-play games might be even better than the ones you paid for

Believe it or not, free-to-play games have evolved into engaging, enjoyable experiences. Here are a few of our favorites that you can play right now, including Warframe and the perennially popular League of Legends.