Microsoft forced Bungie to accept 'Combat Evolved' name

Studio says it "hated" tag to first game in series

Bungie has revealed that Microsoft marketeers forced it to put the infamous 'Combat Evolved' tagline on its original Halo - something the studio said it "hated".

According to the developer - now set to begin work on a new franchise with Activision - Microsoft didn't believe that 'Halo' alone was a good enough name for the classic Xbox and PC title.

Halo: Combat Evolved was released in 2001 and went on to sell over five million copies. It is still available to buy on Xbox LIVE for 1200 MS Points.

"Oh, man... the subtitle," Halo designer Jaime Griesemer told Edge Magazine. "At the time, Microsoft marketing thought Halo was not a good name for a video game brand. It wasn't descriptive like all the military games we were competing with."

The suggestion caused a bit of disagreement at Bungie HQ. "We told them Halo was the name," revealed Greisemer.

"The compromise was they could add a subtitle. Everyone at Bungie hated it. But it turned out to be a very sticky label and has now entered the gaming lexicon to the point where articles that have nothing to do with Halo get titles like 'Skateboarding Evolved'. So I guess in hindsight it was a good compromise."

Bungie left Microsoft in 2007 to become an independent studio.

We're confident the pair agreed a little more cordially on the title of Bungie's latest epic, Halo: Reach. The FPS will be released worldwide on September 14.