Update (12-06-2019):
Multiple community members report that they are having the same issues with sound with the Xbox One version of Halo: Reach. This seems to be in line with the explanation that 343 Industries have given (see original article below). It seems that the encoding of the sound was difficult to port for both the Xbox One and PC versions of the game. There hasn’t been an indication of an update coming anytime soon.

Original article:
Halo: Reach is reportedly having issues with it’s sounds. Despite the fact that Halo: Reach topped the Steam charts upon release, it’s hard to enjoy a game where the sound doesn’t work. What’s going on?

The Master Chief Collection, the collection including the recently release PC port of 2010’s Halo: Reach (Xbox 360), is currently the second best selling game on Steam. However popular the remake may be, it doesn’t seem to be a very smooth launch for Microsoft. In particular, the sound of Reach’s guns and voices seem to be bugged for some players.

Posts on SteamReddit and the official Halo: Reach forum feature instances of players hearing barely any sound when they fire a gun. What makes this bug weirder is the fact that the sounds aren’t just turned down to the decibel levels of an Unggoy running away. The sounds themselves seem warped and distorted.

The same goes for voices. Although the volume of character dialogue doesn’t seem to be a problem, the quality of it is. In the video below you can hear crackling, static noise and even complete cutouts when a character starts to speak.

During our research, we stumbled across a developer update dating back to the 22nd of November. Apparently the devs were aware of the issue before the game even launched.

To update Halo: Reach for Xbox One and PC required entirely changing the encoding for the game’s audio which has resulted in it sounding different from the original release. We are aware that areas of the title don’t sound like what you or we ideally want them to.

But despite recognizing the issue pre-launch, the Master Chief Collection still got released with Halo: Reach. On the one hand one can appreciate the honesty of 343 Industries. They warned players that the sound encoding was far from ideal from the get go. On the other hand, why would you ship a game from which the sounds are broken? The whole situation might have something to do with possible internal problems at the United States based studio, leading up to the release of Halo: Reach on December 3rd.

Like 343 Industries says, they are working on redoing the sounds but that should take a while. In the meantime, the developer has some more work to do. Reports of problems with the progression system, online social functions and bad framerate (as reported by TechRadar) seem to plague the launch of Halo: Reach.

1 Comment

  • andrewsqual
    Posted December 5, 2019 9:26 pm 0Likes

    Hey now, it wouldn’t be a project that has 343i’s involvement or TOTAL DEVELOPMENT if it wasn’t mediocre. Its their thing at this stage. I do not envy poor Splash Damage having to port over the buggy Master Chief Collection to PC though lol.

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