Halo comes back to PC: 343 Industries, a subsidiary of Microsoft, announced that they are developing a multiplayer, free-to-play PC-only version under the title Halo Online together with Saber Interactive. The good news is that the shooter is set to enter Closed Beta later this spring, the "bad news" is that it willl be limited for gamers based in Russia only.
Although both studios, 343 Industries and Saber Interactive are US companies, most of the development for the remastered Halo 2-versions, Halo: The Master Chief Collection for XboxOne have been done in Russia. And I can imagine that the Russian studio producers came up first with this: "Hey, let's bring Halo back to PC and as free-to-play" as this platform has much more revenue potential in Russia, where the console gaming market isn't that important.
Titled "Halo Online" the shooter is "powered by a highly modified version of the Halo 3 engine and optimized for smooth performance on lower-end PC's", and it is built specically for PC, rather than just a platform conversion. The maps will also be developed specifically for Halo Online and are suited for 8-vs-8 PvP matches. At this stage, Halo Online is purely PvP, no campaign or PvE missions are being planned.
The studios have partnered up with Innova Systems to bring Halo Online to the Russian market. Innova is one of the major players in the Russian MMO market, operating major games such as Aion, Dragon's Prophet, Lineage II, and they have gained a lot of experience running f2p shooters, including APB Reloaded, Point Blank and the MMOFPS PlanetSide 2.
Should Halo Online become a successful title in Russia, there might be a slight chance that it might be launched in Western markets, as Microsoft hasn't ruled out to expand it to North America or Europe in the future, referring the official announcement at Halowaypoint.com.