343 Industries, the newly formed Microsoft internal studio for the Halo franchise, is rumored to be working on a remake of the original Halo: Combat Evolved.

According to “Industry sources” in Game Master magazine, the game would run on the Halo: Reach engine and hit store shelves before the full-fledged Halo 3 sequel late 2012. If true, this would slot in the remake for a late 2011 release, which co-incidentally is when the tenth anniversary of the original’s release is.

Reboot Master Chief?

The rumor certainly holds some credence as Microsoft was rumored to be looking very closely at mirroring Activision’s Call of Duty schedule, which is an annual release model. This would leave us with Reach in 2010, Halo 1 HD in 2011 and Halo 4 (?) in 2012. It would also make sense for a new studio inheriting a massively popular franchise to hone their skills and experience with the series by doing a remake first, rather than a proper sequel.

Following Sony’s recent spate of announcements regarding HD remakes of PS2 titles, Microsoft seems to be following the trend as well. While we would like to see much more fresh titles and new IPs, this rumor certainly has our interest. Let us know what you think in the comments section below.

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