Rumors are flying in Seattle that Bungie, makers of Halo and, much more relevant here, Marathon and Pathways to Darkness, may be splitting from Microsoft. A complete and total rumor, unsubstantiated and unsourced, but like all good rumors, it has just enough good reasoning that it might actually be true. Microsoft certainly has no reason to let go of Bungie, but it's totally believable that Bungie is tired of being the Halo company, and ready to do some developing on its own again.
And of course, if Bungie breaks away to work on the platform of its choice, it's almost a given that we'll see a brand new Bungie game on the Mac. And how fortuitous, says Christopher Price-- he cites Bungie's rumored split as part of a trinity of Mac gaming developments lately that all point to one thing: Apple is poised to return to (and take over) gaming.
We are securely in rumorland here, so take all of this with a full tablespoon of salt. But you can smell the storm coming in terms of Apple and gaming-- something is brewing in Steve Jobs' head. I don't know if it will come on AppleTV (because of course that's a "hobby," and Apple's real power isn't in the set top box -- it's in the insanely fast and beautiful Macintosh computers), but the stars are aligning, and if Apple wants to get into gaming, it can definitely do it. Make no mistake -- Leopard is the priority right now, and likely will be through the end of the year. But next Christmas, don't be surprised if gamers want something under their tree from Apple.