Following up on yesterday's rumor out of OXM that Gearbox may be handling Halo 4, Variety's Ben Fritz reports that his source close to the dev confirms that it "has definitely had conversations with Microsoft about doing a new Halo game and is very excited at the prospect," but that "there was no deal in place." For those who might not remember, Gearbox has a history with the Halo franchise, having handled the PC version of the original game.

Fritz reckons it's "quite possible" Gearbox will helm a new Halo project ... it's just "not a certainty yet." If it happens, that would make at least four Halo-related titles in the works: Halo Wars; the Halo game that Bungie was supposed to reveal at E3; Peter Jackson's interactive take on the Halo universe; and whatever Gearbox may or may not be crafting. Given that OXM's rumor regarding Halo 4 as a launch title for 360's successor (if there even is one), we should expect to hear something official either way in, oh, the next year or two.

This article was originally published on Joystiq.

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