IGN has released the rocking live-action trailer for the video game Halo 3: ODST. The commercial shows snapshots in the life of an Orbital Drop Shock Trooper, beginning with him as child witnessing a funeral and ending with him as scarred soldier mourning a fallen comrade. The brief war scenes against the Covenant are fast-paced and well done, with an Omaha-beach-landing-introduction to the battle and tense encounter with a Covenant Brute. The ODST may be an impassive, well trained instrument of war but he is no Master Chief and the clip makes it clear that the new game will emphasize a different kind of hero.
Given this trailer, it’s no surprise that many are again asking questions about the Halo film project and why exactly it failed. Video games have never translated well to celluloid, but the Haloverse has more depth than you would expect (fleshed out in some of the novels). And the central war with the Covenant, too, is no worse an impetus for story-telling than that of many other sci-fi outings. However, Neill Blomkamp, who was once signed on to direct the Halo film (and then went on to helm the spectacular District 9) pointed out that one of project’s hurdles was the game’s main protagonist. Master Chief worked well in the video game but did not hold much weight, dramatically, because of his faceless nature.
Rumours about the project have continued to surface (a script by Stuart Beattie adapting The Fall of Reach is the last I heard) but at the moment the rights to the production are with Microsoft and it will be interesting to see if they take the positive reaction to this trailer as cause to revisit its status.
The game launches on the 22nd of this month.