Halo: Reach Could Use Natal

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Bungie’s upcoming Halo game might be one of the highest-profile “core” gamer franchises to make use of Microsoft’s Natal technology, according to Bungie.

Microsoft’s everything-sensing camera technology for the 360 has been demonstrated to be capable at everything from silly art applications to Burnout Paradise, but to really sell the so-called “core gamer” on the device, Microsoft’s going to need something of a killer app. And these days apps don’t come much more killer than Bungie’s Halo franchise.

While this year’s Halo 3: ODST obviously won’t support Natal in any way, the same may not be true for Halo: Reach, the upcoming prequel FPS due next fall. “I absolutely think Reach could be enabled with it,” Bungie studio president Harold Ryan told the Seattle Times. By “it” he means Natal, by the way.

Microsoft has already declared that Natal will not only have “arcadey games, but real, hardcore, triple-A titles.” Reach would certainly fit that billing, but how might it work? The Natal team has probably already thought about it. “Think about a first-person shooter where I’m using the controller but I’m doing tracking by just moving around and looking around corners,” Natal project director Alex Kipman said earlier this month describing a potential “core gamer” title using Natal.

Kipman even dropped the Halo name when he made those remarks, describing a hypothetical Halo-Natal experience with someone throwing grenades or driving a Warthog using Natal. Which, along with the new Bungie remarks, would suggest to the speculative mind that the Natal team and Bungie have been in cahoots this entire time. I wouldn’t be surprised.

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