Frank O’Connor, content monkey (official title) at Bungie has been waxing lyrical about Halo 3’s artificial intelligence.

"Halo 3 encounters are more fun, more challenging, more varied and more enjoyable than those in Halo or Halo 2," he comments.

"The interplay and strategies created among the various Covenant foes is just thrilling. One weird thing that I just can't get used to (in a good way, I mean) is the fact that you have to plan for multiple encounters in one location.

"You can see a group in the distance, and head down to fight them. You could toss a grenade to get the party started - but here's a hint. Between you and them and the tumble of rocks and scree between you, I happen to know that a Phantom is going to drop off four Grunts and a Brute Chieftain. The Phantom itself is going to start laying down fire on you, so my suggestion is to bide your time, wait for the first Phantom, and take care of that before irritating those guys way down the hill.

"The AI on the opponents is more interesting too. Even a lone Grunt can be a nasty challenge. Actually, a lone Grunt is sometimes a cornered Grunt now. You've been warned."

This was all blurted from the weekly update of Bungie’s webmouth [link]. There’s info on atmospherics, including what the sky is made of, where the mountains come from, news that wind can be seen on the waves in the distance and even word that you can kill innocent birds. Lovely.

Keep coming back to the Halo 3 hub to find out more as it comes.