An Interview With the Man Behind Every Secret in Halo, General Heed

Today is a special one for Generation Xbox as we got a chance to sit down with legendary Halo community member General Heed. General Heed is your source for learning every nook and cranny of secrets that 343 and Bungie have left behind. Did you know that Halo CE had a secret banshee only flyable in a cut-scene? Did you know that there is a secret grunt zombie easter egg in Halo 3? General Heed is an absolute delight for all Halo and video game fans alike. It is our absolute pleasure to host him today!

Nick: Welcome to Generation Xbox General Heed! Thank you for taking time out of your busy schedule to field some of my questions. Before we dive into some of your incredible discoveries and amazing content, I want to start off with the most basic question. How did you discover video games? Was it an experience with a friend or family, or was it a certain game that caught your eye? What was the defining moment that hooked you into the gaming world?

General Heed: Hey guys! Thanks for having me for this interview! So my entry into video games was definitely a long time ago. I was maybe like 3 or 4 years at the time, I didn’t have any game consoles at all but I did have access to a “newish” Windows 95 PC. The only games I really had on that PC was 3D Pinball and a bunch of educational games like Spyfox, Freddi Fish, and a bunch of “The Learning Company” games. So for a few years, those were the first games I’ve played and to their credit, some of those games were actually pretty fun. Eventually, I got a Nintendo 64 which I’d say was probably my first experience with more typical gaming. One of the first games I got on that system was Goldeneye 007 which I absolutely loved. From that point on, I really got into gaming and tried many different games across many different platforms. I wouldn’t necessarily say there was a single game that defined my entry into the gaming world. There were definitely a lot of notable games to me over the years and each one was significant to me, some even life changing actually.

N: Halo is very prominent in the content that you produce. What about Halo makes you so passionate about the franchise? How long have you been playing Halo titles?

GH: For me, part of what I love most about Halo is that it’s one of those games where you have a lot of opportunities to explore around, you aren’t as restricted in what you can do. Being able to get out of the map just to look around has always been really fun to me and it’s always interesting to see what’s out there. Sometimes the devs might’ve hidden interesting things out there and sometimes there might be nothing at all but the process of getting out there is pretty fun too. I’ve been playing Halo pretty much since the beginning and it’s always had this mysterious atmosphere to it as well as epic moments that gives it a big wow factor for me. The first time I saw Halo CE being played, I was instantly really fascinated by it. As each Halo game progresses, a lot of big improvements and new features are added which I rarely ever see in any other game which is why Halo is pretty much my favorite game franchise.

N: You uncover details about each Halo game that I don’t even think the developers remember at this point. What fuels you to find those discoveries? The Secret Zombie Marines Easter Egg video comes to mind in regards to out there finds. How do you go about picking the next secret to uncover?

GH: In the early days, a lot of things we did were largely found by accident. My friends and I would just simply play the game a lot for fun. We’d do a lot of Halo 3 custom games, build maps in Forge, help people get achievements in campaign and so on. Eventually, some glitches might pop up here and there and I’d just upload whatever interesting things happened. But later on, once we had a better understanding of why certain glitches happened, we were able to investigate the game better and find more things. We also get a lot of questions and suggestions from the community for things to investigate. People might ask what if we try this or what if we go to that spot and sometimes those suggestions actually do have interesting results. Other times, I might have some brainstorming sessions with others to try to figure out where to go next or what to test out. Also, once I learned how to mod Halo, it also helped me test out a lot of theories which led to learning a lot more new things such as the example you provided.

N: Off all the discoveries and secrets that you’ve found within video games which is your all-time favorite? Do you even have a favorite?

GH: This is definitely a hotly debated topic among my friends and I. Personally, my favorite would actually be the Ghost of Forge World glitch in Halo Reach. It essentially desyncs you from other players in a forge game, making you intangible and imperceptible to other players but still allowing you to interact with them, just not the other way around. However, one of my friends, FOTUS Chaoz who’s been a big help on my channel for awhile now, prefers some of the more classic things on my channel like the Time Travel On The Covenant glitch which I also like a lot too.

N: You’ve built a passionate and dedicated community which is no easy feat. Your YouTube channel has just over 200k subscribers, which is such an awesome achievement. What does that feel like knowing that people tune in daily for your content? Do you feel a sense of pride knowing that you’ve built a place for gamers to enjoy more about their hobbies?

GH: I’m honestly very shocked my channel has grown this much since I started it. Back when I uploaded my very first video, I never would’ve imagined getting this far. At the time, I was just uploading random things that happened on Halo 3 and I remember being excited to get 100 views on one of the videos. I’m definitely very humbled by it and do greatly appreciate all the fans that enjoy the content! It does make me happy that people still tune in all the time for my content and I hope to continue putting things out there that they’ll find interesting!

N: You’ve done some videos within other video games titles such as Modern Warfare 2 and Fallout 4. Are there any other titles that you’ve wanted to explore but haven’t yet?

GH: There’s definitely a lot more games I’ve always wanted to tackle, some really popular games and others very obscure games. There’s definitely more Call of Duty and Fallout games I’d like to do but in addition to those, I’ve always wanted to expand to other genres like racing or RPG games. However, I’ve never quite been able to figure out the best way to go about such an expansion and most of the suggestions I get for experiments to try in games are heavily related to Halo still. But some day I hope to get back to trying other games again.

N: This question might be a bit difficult, but I’ve always been curious. What was the most challenging project that you’ve worked on to date? Has there been a project that comes to mind that had multiple hurdles towards completion?

GH: The most challenging project I’ve ever worked on as far as my Halo videos go would probably be the one where we succeeded in destroying the Covenant cruiser at the end of Halo Reach without using the MAC cannon. That video required a lot of prior research and testing using mods to make sure certain things were possible. I literally have a whole research document of weapon ranges, projectile speeds, time to target, and best locations to try it from. When we had the theory down, actually trying it required a full lobby and took many attempts before we finally got it working.

Outside of Halo videos though, I’ve worked on various other projects like creating a holographic Yugioh game on the Microsoft HoloLens device. However, there were quite a few challenges with that project and I ended up having to shelve that. But the HoloLens is such an amazing device so I hope to one day be able to revisit that or perhaps tackle another project.

N: I always want to follow up a challenging question with a fun one. What is your fondest memory within your content creator career? You’ve provided so much joy to people all over the world. What is something you can always look back on and have a massive smile?

GH: Some of the best moments I’ve had would definitely be when I started modding Halo and creating some really wacky scenarios such as playing as a seagull in Halo 3 or making Dr. Tillson nothing but a skeleton in Halo 4. I literally had a brainstorming session with some friends about the wackiest things we could do in Halo and it was absolutely hilarious with all the ideas thrown around. More recently, I was really amazed that Steve Downes was able to re-dub all of Noble 6’s lines in Halo Reach so I could create a mod where Master Chief is literally the main character in Halo Reach. I am of course always open to suggestions for more wacky ideas in Halo ;).

N: How can individuals support the incredible work that you do? Do you have a Patreon? Are there any ways that you’d like the video game community to get more involved with your work?

GH: Spreading the word and sharing my videos would be awesome and very appreciated! I do also have a Patreon! I’m definitely more than happy to have people get involved with my work and welcome any suggestions or video requests, as well as more wacky ideas. It’s always fun to see people come up with interesting or hilarious ideas and then making them a reality!

Thank you General Heed for your time! Remember you can subscribe to his YouTube channel for more incredible Halo content. Speaking of Halo content, make sure to stay tuned to Generation Xbox for coverage of all things Xbox and Halo! Check out the newly shown gameplay for Halo: Infinite here!

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