Today Microsoft announced that Halo 4 will be released for the Xbox 360 on November 6 of this year, beginning, according to Microsoft Studio VP Phil Spencer, "a journey that will encompass the next decade of Halo games and experiences." Halo 4's story will begin four years after the events of Halo 3, continuing to put Master Chief in harm's way.
Microsoft states that Master Chief will "confront his destiny and face an ancient evil that threatens the fate of the entire universe" in the new trilogy. Since Bungie Studios, who brought us the first three numbered Halo games as well as ODST and Reach, split from Microsoft in 2007 to pursue its own IPs, 343 Industries (which, unsurprisingly, has been doing a lot of hiring) will be overseeing the future of the Halo series; indeed, 343 Industries was created by Microsoft for the sole purpose of producing Halo content. No doubt the pressure's on to make sure the company's first major outing lives up to Bungie's efforts.
Stay tuned as more details about Halo 4 drop. With E3 fast approaching, the wait shouldn't be too long.