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Halo 4 revives Master Chief in new saga on 6 November

Halo is returning to our consoles this November and bringing with it battle-hardened space badass Master Chief, in the first in a new saga.

Master Chief is donning his helmet and heading back into battle as epic sci-fi shooter Halo returns to our consoles on 6 November, with Halo 4 beginning a new storyline for the series.

Master Chief has been absent from the Xbox 360 for a while, with his comrades filling in for him in 2011's Halo: Reach and 2009's Halo: ODST (Orbital Drop Shock Troopers -- possibly the most badass-sounding job in the galaxy). MC's back in action in the fourth outing, which is simply named Halo 4. With a November launch, it's landing in plenty of time to be on your Christmas list, along with Grand Theft Auto 5.

The game is set four years after the events of Halo 3 and will see Master Chief -- not to be confused with Master Chef -- "confront his destiny and face an ancient evil that threatens the fate of the entire universe" publisher Microsoft explains. So don't expect a casual stroll through the daisies in the park.

Microsoft adds that Halo 4 is the beginning of a new saga in the Halo series, suggesting that we'll be seeing much more of Master Chief and his helmet-clad buddies in the future.

Not a whole lot is known at this point about just what to expect from the gameplay, but it's quite possible hardcore fans will notice a few tweaks. Halo 4 will be the first in the Halo series not to be produced by Bungie, instead being made by Microsoft's own 343 Industries. It's unlikely that 343 will be altering the games too much -- Microsoft isn't going to want to annoy such a vast fanbase -- so don't start fretting that Master Chief's next missions will involve him gathering space bunnies into a big astro-sack.

Expect more details, screenshots and trailers to emerge at the E3 games conference this summer. We might also be treated to a peek at the next generation of consoles, although Microsoft has denied its Xbox 720 will be there.

What do you make of the Halo franchise? Is it the ultimate in shootertainment, or are you more of a Gears of War fan? Let me know in the comments below or over on our awesome Facebook page.