Smash

Iconic Halo theme composer casts doubts on Master Chief in Smash Ultimate

Published: 8/Jan/2021 17:38

by Michael Gwilliam

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Super Smash Bros Ultimate fans hoping to see Xbox mascot Master Chief added to Nintendo’s flagship fighter at some point may be in for some disappointment thanks to comments made by the composer of the Halo theme.

Many Smash Ultimate players felt like it was becoming increasingly likely that the FPS superstar would come to the game after Microsoft and Nintendo worked together to get Banjo and Steve from Minecraft added as DLC fighters.

Now, sadly, that opportunity may have come and gone if remarks by the Halo theme’s composer, Martin O’Donnell, are to be believed.

In an episode of the Kiwi Talkz podcast, O’Donnell was asked about if he was approached by Nintendo or Microsoft to remix the Halo theme for Smash, assuming Master Chief was added.

Microsoft Master Chief
Microsoft
Master Chief could be the biggest Smash reveal ever.

“I’d love to be asked,” he replied, but not before taking a brief pause.

After some back and forth with the hosts about how Microsoft and Nintendo have worked together and the possibility of Chief coming, O’Donnell further explained his answer.

“It would be great. I haven’t been asked by Microsoft to do anything in the last decade or so,” he added. “So, I’d be surprised. Because Microsoft, of course, still owns the IP and they, for some reason, have not asked me to do anything.”

While the composer is doubtful that Microsoft would ask him, he is completely open to the idea. “If Nintendo asked me, that would be great! I would love to do that.”

Of course, this comment doesn’t completely rule out the chance that Master Chief could “finish the fight” and round out Fighters Pass Volume 2, but with a different composer remixing the theme.

The Fighters Pass Volume 2 DLC has already been decided, so you would think that if O’Donnell was going to be asked to compose a remix, Nintendo or Microsoft would have already done so.

Fighters Pass Volume 2 spots
Nintendo
Could one of the remaining Fighters Pass Vol 2 spots go to Master Chief?

This isn’t the first time the Halo star’s chances for a roster spot have taken a hit. As Dexerto reported back in October, Microsoft responded to a fan question about when Master Chief would be added to Smash.

Xbox France simply replied: “He’s still waiting for his invitation,” suggesting they hadn’t been asked but are open to the idea if asked by Nintendo.

In any case, chalk O’Donnell’s comments as something to consider when evaluating the SPARTAN’s chances at coming to Smash Ultimate as DLC in the future.

Overwatch

Blizzard changes Overwatch Priority Pass again to stop system abuse

Published: 16/Jan/2021 2:04

by Andrew Amos

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Blizzard has implemented more changes to their Overwatch Priority Pass program to stop players from abusing the system to get their preferred role more often.

The Priority Pass system in Overwatch has been a successful addition so far. Giving players the option to jump the queue for high-traffic roles by sacrificing a few games has helped tackle the game’s long queue times.

However, it hasn’t been without its flaws. Game quality has been pulled into question, with people playing off-role for these passes. Also, people have been abusing the current system to just stack passes quickly by intentionally losing.

The Priority Pass system in Overwatch
Blizzard Entertainment
Priority Passes have been a hit with Overwatch players, but it’s not perfect.

Blizzard are looking to crack down on the latter issue with their latest changes to Priority Pass on January 15.

“Our data indicates that the Priority Pass is functioning as intended, generally providing shorter queue times for those who use them. The goal of the Priority Pass is to improve player experience and get players into matches quicker,” community manager Josh Nash told players.

“In the same vein, we don’t want this feature to have a negative impact on the quality of matches for yourself or others. We want to do our part to discourage players from intentionally losing and ruining matches for the sake of earning priority passes.”

If you lose a match while playing for passes, you’ll only gain one pass instead of two. This will stop players from just inting their games for the ticket.

Blizzard are also refunding passes to players if they queued up for a role using Priority Pass, but then had to wait longer than the estimated time for it.

Oni Genji Overwatch skin
Blizzard
These changes mean you won’t burn through your passes as quickly.

These changes are active immediately, so you can make use of them straight away. Blizzard are continuing to tweak the system as time goes on, and are “ looking into how we can better communicate when you are rewarded passes after playing a match.”