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'Cheneymania' award nixed from Halo 3 videogame
Nick Juliano
Published: Tuesday May 15, 2007
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A test version of the forthcoming installment to Microsoft's popular Halo videogame franchise included an homage to the vice president of the United States. However, the XBox 360 in-game "award" wasn't named after Dick Cheney for his political acumen, but instead for his prowess and aim with a shotgun.

The "Cheneymania" award was discovered Sunday by fans playing a beta-test version of the first person shooter Halo 3, but its name was changed Monday to "open season," according to a post on XBox360fanboy.com. Players are given awards after rounds during online multiplayer games, and the "Cheneymania" accolade was intended for the player able to "kill 10 opponents in a row with the shotgun without dying."

A Microsoft spokesman confirmed to RAW STORY that the Cheney-based award was included in a test version of the game but will not be available in its final release. He said the company had no further comment Tuesday afternoon.

Although it isn't scheduled to be released until the fall, the game developers are allowing fans to play this early version, which will allow them to fix any bugs encountered in the beta, or to tweak the game to satisfy players. Last Friday, the press was invited first to play the beta, and a Reuters article reported that some in attendance gave it mixed reviews.

The award references a February 2006 hunting accident in which Vice President Dick Cheney accidentally shot a friend in the face with a shotgun.

Discovery of the Cheneymania award prompted different reactions among hundreds of comments in the forums of game developer Bungie Studios, a subsidiary of Microsoft.

"A lot of you say that the joke isn't political, but you're wrong- A joke about a politician IS political...don't get me wrong, the joke is pretty funny," wrote forum user RedHound5. "I mean, it's not every day that a man shoots another man in the face by accident- but the problem with this joke is people turn it political."

But another forum user named Dark Quiche Boy wasn't happy with the one-time vice presidential in-game achievement.

"Dude," Dark Quiche Boy complained. "Thats not a cool medal. Poor Cheney, it was an accident."