Microsoft appears to be staffing up for the next installment in the Halo franchise.
The company has posted more than a dozen Halo-related jobs to its careers Web site this month, most of them in the past few days.
"Do you love Halo? Do you want to be part of the creation of a new game in the Halo universe? Are you a programmer with an interest in animation and cinematics?" reads one of the listings, which seeks out a software development engineer who specializes in animation. "We are gathering an incredible team to help drive the future of Halo."
The company is also looking to hire artists and business types, as well as an audio engineer and "missions designer," according to the job listings, which are posted both on Microsoft's main job site and on a Web site for Microsoft's 343 Industries, a game studio set up to develop Halo projects.
Although Microsoft has spun off Bungie, which created the original Halo trilogy, Microsoft itself has continued to develop Halo products, including the Halo Wars game and Halo Waypoint, an online destination for Halo enthusiasts. The company has not talked about any titles beyond Halo: Reach which went into beta testing in May and is slated for release on Sept. 14.
Meanwhile, Bungie is working on a non-Halo-related project, community director Brian Jarrard told CNET earlier this month during a video interview (see below) showing off Halo: Reach.
A Microsoft representative confirmed to CNET that the job listings are legitimate, but declined to offer any details.
"Right now we're deeply engaged with Bungie on the development of 'Halo: Reach' which is shaping up to be the biggest game of 2010," Microsoft said. "We have no other announcements to make at this time."