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You’re not just getting a new Halo this holiday. You’re getting a new Forge system, too.

Halo 5: Guardians will have a new Forge mode that will allow players to create their own multiplayer maps. This comes from Josh Holmes, the head of internal development at Microsoft’s 343 Industries game studio, in a blog post today. While the user-created content first debuted in Halo in 2007, this announcement shows just how important it is today to give players tools to make their own content in an age when Minecraft is one of the most-played games in the world.

Last month, 343 Industries brought together a group five Community Cartographers (or Forgers) to the game studio to get hands-on with the new tools. Over the course of a week, each created a new map for Xbox One multiplayer play. Things that used to take four days to do can be done in a couple of minutes, said Tom French, user-generated content design lead at the studio.

“It was amazing to see how much they were able to accomplish in such a short amount of time,” Holmes wrote. “Throughout their visit, the cartographers provided feedback and feature requests that were then turned around in nightly updates from the Forge team. We had a camera crew on site to document this week-long collaboration and we’ll be sharing that footage in the near future. In it, you’ll see many of the new Forge features in action.”


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“For Halo 5: Guardians, we knew we wanted to take a giant leap forward with Forge,” Holmes said. “The creativity of the Forge community knows no bounds and our goal was to give them more power and control than ever before. We wanted to remove as many constraints as possible so they can create high quality maps that rival the ones that we are shipping with the game.”

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