Equip your Spartan salt shield, because this rumour sounds simply too soap operatic to instantly believe. On the other hand, it might just be crazy enough to work and stranger things have happened, so we're looking into it as if it were the real deal. The word from the tubes this morning is that Halo developer Bungie may be parting ways with its owner, Microsoft. Posted at the Seattle Post Intelligencer Blogs—but sourced from the 8BitJoystick e-zine—Jake Metcalf cites a "friend of mine who has someone close that works at Bungie" passing on information about the split.
Writing of a seemingly amicable separation, the source says that "Apparently MS just wants Bungie to make Halo for the rest of their natural days, and Bungie doesn't like how MS is constantly trying to 'handle' everything they do." The unnamed friend of a friend also writes that ownership of the Halo franchise will remain with Microsoft, that Bungie will move onto original IPs, but that the team may still yet work on Halo 4.
On the one hand, this seems like a loss for Microsoft Game Studios that's too big to be believed. On the other, my theory that all Microsoft rumours are true ensure that I'm not writing this off yet. If true, you heard it secondhand here first, folks.
Bungie Leaving Microsoft!! You heard it here first folks [Seattle Post Intelligencer Blogs]