This is Spartan 117! Can anyone read me? Where the hell am I?
Sorry, Master Chief, we're not in Bungie land anymore. We're in 343 Industries now. Get used to it.
343 Industries spilled some of the details earlier at PAX panel. It's not surprising that Halo 4 would be tangibly different than the other Halos, as only a few employees from Bungie are working on this highly visible installment in the popular franchise. Still, it's a chronological sequel to Halo 3, with Master Chief awakening on a mysterious planet with Forerunner technology and a whole range of different sounds.
As opposed to the general plight against the Covenant, Halo 4 will emphasize discovery and exploration of both the planet and, well, Master Chief. Sure, he's the strong and silent type, laconic in a Clint Eastwood way, but now we will likely get a bit more personal history to see him as an actual character: a lone wolf hero. And we've got three titles to see his other side, because Halo 4 through 6 will be a trilogy.
The gameplay will retain the Halo style but incorporate plenty of new, yet unrevealed, features. So hopefully this new trilogy doesn't go the way of Star Wars or we'll see a lot of nerd-rage.
In the meantime, you can review the concept art trailer below: