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The Tru7h About Wall-Hugging Hippos
Posted By: Matt <>Date: 12/6/01 1:40 p.m.

In Response To: Incorrect :-) (Miguel Chavez)

Back in the very early days of Halo's development, before we'd even announced it, everyone at Bungie was very excited about the game. One of the things Bungie people do when they're very excited is come up with all sorts of wacky and impossible ideas and press the developers to include them in the game. My wacky and impossible idea was an easter egg: a hippo for net games that was invulnerable to attack and available only to Bungie employees. That way I could jump into people's games to wreak havoc in style, erupting out of marshes and ponds when nobody expected it and tearing suckers to shreds with my enormous teeth as I galloped gracelessly across the beautiful landscape.

I explained this idea to Rob McLees and he very kindly and politely explained where I could stick my idea. Too difficult to implement for an easter egg, especially one that existed only to satisfy my hippo fetish and sadistic impulses.

"How about an anthropomorphic gun-toting hippo?" I asked. "Just take the cyborg model and slap a different skin on him." Rob explained the way Halo handled models enough for me to realize that I was still asking for the impossible.

Rob realized I'd be enormously happy if hippos could destroy people in Halo, even in some symbolic form, and did his best to accomodate me. One of the ideas we were kicking around at the beginning of development was a sort of proximity mine; it came in two pieces which you'd slap together to arm it, then stick it on the nearest convenient surface and stand back to watch the suffering. Some weeks after our initial conversation, Rob invited me to look at the model for the mine, and I was thrilled beyond belief when he spun the model around and I saw the cheery hippo painted on the one side. "When you see some chump run into a room and then see what's left of him blown right back out the door," Rob told me, "you can think to yourself 'A Hippo did that.'"

Of course when we started talking about Halo in public I couldn't say "wait until you see the proximity mine" because at that point there was no guarantee it would be in the game and I didn't want to promise anything - a policy that turned out to be a smart move since the mines never made it in. But saying "beware of wall-hugging hippos" was fun because people wondered what the hell I was talking about and discussed it, which wouldn't have happened with a boring, less-evocative description.

Some of you might be thinking, "But Matt, whether you call it a 'proximity mine' or a 'wall-hugging hippo' doeesn't matter because it's not in the game, you lying bastard." To which I say: they may not hug walls anymore, but they're still in the game (thanks again to Robt.), and they're still extremely lethal. But you'll need excellent vision and a really nice TV to spot them.


Message Index


So... what was the "wall-hugging hippo?" *NM*Forensic 12/6/01 7:41 a.m.
     Re: So... what was the "wall-hugging hippo?"ElectricSheep 12/6/01 10:09 a.m.
           Re: So... what was the "wall-hugging hippo?"Lophan 12/6/01 10:24 a.m.
                 Incorrect :-)Miguel Chavez 12/6/01 11:15 a.m.
                       Re: Lol I agree with Miguel "nm" *NM*AB10784 12/6/01 1:09 p.m.
                       The Tru7h About Wall-Hugging HipposMatt 12/6/01 1:40 p.m.
                             Ok gang, Who'll be the first...scorpion 12/6/01 1:46 p.m.
                                   Re: Ok gang, Who'll be the first...Mark Levin 12/6/01 6:08 p.m.
                                         Re: Ok gang, Who'll be the first...scorpion 12/6/01 6:15 p.m.
                                         That's not it...Miguel Chavez 12/6/01 9:53 p.m.
                                               Re: That's not it...ApolokiA 12/13/01 4:44 p.m.
                                   Those Plasma GrenadesElectricSheep 12/6/01 8:59 p.m.
                                         Re: Tried it...but the answer is nope *NM*kayas 12/6/01 11:23 p.m.
                             "OH GOD!!! NOT AGAIN!!!"Jester 12/6/01 2:11 p.m.
                                   Re: "OH GOD!!! NOT AGAIN!!!"Uriel 12/6/01 4:18 p.m.
                                   Animal Plurals?vector40 12/6/01 8:16 p.m.
                             Re: The Tru7h About Wall-Hugging HipposEric Trautmann 12/6/01 5:55 p.m.
                             Re: The Tru7h About Wall-Hugging HipposRaven0uS 12/6/01 7:14 p.m.
                             Re: The Tru7h About Wall-Hugging HipposKnight Premier 12/7/01 12:07 a.m.
                                   Re: The Tru7h About Wall-Hugging Hipposvector40 12/7/01 12:37 a.m.
                             Re: The Tru7h About Wall-Hugging HipposAndy erickson 2/4/02 8:10 p.m.

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