They compromised so they could "add a subtitle" but 'Halo' was to remain, and thus 'Halo: Combat Evolved' was born. All at team Bungie "hated it."
"Oh, man... the subtitle," Jaime Griesemer told Edge, a Halo designer. "At the time, Microsoft marketing thought Halo was not a good name for a video game brand. It wasn't descriptive like all the military games we were competing with."
Released in 2001, Halo: Combat Evolved went on to sell over 5 million copies. "We told them Halo was the name," said Griesemer, with Bungie unhappy at suggestions.
"The compromise was they could add a subtitle. Everyone at Bungie hated it."
"But it turned out to be a very sticky label and has now entered the gaming lexicon to the point where articles that have nothing to do with Halo get titles like 'Skateboarding Evolved'. So I guess in hindsight it was a good compromise." Marketing did good?
Bungie's latest subtitled epic in the Halo franchise, Halo: Reach, was likely a joint naming effort with smiles all around the office. It releases exclusively on the Xbox 360 September 14th and will be the developer's last entry for quite some time.