Well, the good news is that Microsoft has brought a new, first-person shooter Halo title to PC.
The not-so-good news however, is that it is presently set for a Russian release only.
Announced during a press event in Russia today, the PC only Halo Online will be jointly developed and managed by Microsoft, Saber Interactive and Innova Systems.
Launching in a Russian closed beta at the end of the month, Halo Online is powered by a highly modified version of the Halo 3 engine and as such, is tailor made to run on much lower spec PC's.
Set on a secret UNSC space station called 'Anvil' where Spartans train together in war exercises, Halo Online ditches a single-player campaign in favour of multiplayer only skirmishes.
While no launch date has been set, the question came up regarding the possibility of Halo Online reaching other territories outside of Russia and thus, the following reply was given on the official:
"Right now our focus is on learning as much as we can from the closed beta period in Russia. Theoretically, any expansion outside of Russia would have to go through region-specific changes to address player expectations.”
So not a flat out denial then, but it's not exactly hopeful either.
There is afor this sort of thing after all, as Activision took a similarly big name shooter in Call of Duty and re-purposed it into a free-to-play, multiplayer-only title so that it might it catch on in mainland China.
In a similar vein then, Halo Online looks like Microsoft's own attempt at tapping into a foreign market governed by different economic conditions than our own.