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This has been irritating PC
Gamers for over a decade, but that damned XBox stole one of our favorite
developers! Long before Reach
fell, Bungie was making shooters, strategy and action games that could only be
enjoyed on a PC, and we want them back. Halo may have been console gamers’ first viable shooter
franchise, but its developer was making some of the best games for PC all
through the 90’s.
Even better, Bungie was one of the few great developers who always made a Macintosh version of their games. In fact, before there even was a Bungie, one of its founders Alex Seropian was making Mac freeware games, like a pong clone called Gnop. This humble start led Seropian to join fellow Mac programmer Jason Jones to publish the primitive multiplayer game Minotaur: Labyrinths of Crete, which launched the newly-founded Bungie on its path to Multiplayer greatness.
That understanding of multi-player gaming back in the dawn of the internet led the Bungie team to create Marathon, another Mac classic. It did for First Person Shooters on Macintosh what Doom did for Windows. A sci-fi shooter that cast the player as a human defending against alien invaders, the Marathon series was the spiritual predecessor for the Halo franchise, but was only playable on Mac’s primordial networking protocol. Sadly even this bit of PC pride was stolen when Marathon was turned into an XBox arcade title a few years ago.
PC Gamers can still claim Bungie’s strategy franchise Myth, which took the base-building and resource harvesting out of that genre and put players in charge of a haggard army of humans and dwarves beset by an endless tide of the undead. This franchise at least has remained PC exclusive, although the third game wasn’t actually made by Bungie. Dedicated fans continued to keep the franchise updated, and filled with user-generated mods and add-ons. Sadly, it has been over ten years since a Myth game was released, and the chances of a new one being developed by Bungie is unlikely because the rights to the franchise were bought by Take 2 in 2001. The same holds true for one of Bungie’s lesser-known franchises, Oni.
Surpassing all of their other work is Halo. Of the five Halo games Bungie made only the first two ever received a PC port. While Halo 1 & 2 are fine games, they aren’t going to continue captivating PC gamers while Halo 3, ODST and Reach are out there. Although a PC version of these games would delight PC gamers, there has been no official word on them coming to PC yet. Even though Halo 3 for PC is the subject of endless rumor, the truth is that the Halo franchise is the XBox’s flagship series, so any PC port is still a way off, and Halo Reach is going to be even longer.
Bungie split off from Microsoft last year, and has more autonomy now. They have a deal with Activision to create new games, but we aren’t likely to see them revisit any of their classic PC franchises. The good news is that the company that earned our devotion over the last 20 years is going to be making new games without being restricted to the XBox, and that does mean that we can look forward to some new intellectual properties from Bungie, and they’re likely to end up on our chosen platform.