Rory Galvin looks into the mess behind the scenes at 343 Industries, and why Halo is missing so much right now
Halo Infinite is a story of complete wasted potential, and it’s all brought on by poor management. As of writing, the game’s playerbase (according to Steam Charts) is dropping by an average of 50% each month - it had a record-breaking launch of 250,000 concurrent players in November, it now has less-than 30,000 people playing regularly.
If you’re willing to hold your breath to look at the cesspool that is the Halo Subreddit, you’ll see that most people are pretty unhappy with the state of the game
If you’re willing to hold your breath to look at the cesspool that is the Halo Subreddit, you’ll see that most people are pretty unhappy with the state of the game. There's constant daily posts whinging about the lack of maps, weapons and modes in the game that are a contestant reminder of how half-baked everything is. And even if it is complaining, they're pretty valid with them, because it's true. Since the launch of the game in November, there has been no new weapons or maps added, which is absolutely ridiculous. There's been I think two modes, both of which arguably should've been there from the beginning - as they've been in previous entries.
Technical issues also really hurt the multiplayer experience of Infinite. For quite some time most of the Big Team Battle modes in the game had debilitating server issues that made it unplayable for weeks. That left you with the 4v4 modes and maps, which only sped up the tiresome feeling you got from playing. That's been fixed since, but one other issue that is just as painful is desync. If you've ever sworn you got around a corner before you were shot dead, you're not insane, it's been a problem since day one. Servers will always give priority to whoever's shooting, but the sync is off by so much it becomes an extremely annoying experience, and is pretty unacceptable, especially with the competitive experience.
The first season of Halo Infinite hasn't ended, and it's been well over three months with unsatisfying progression and a diabolically-bad battle pass, where some of the awards are challenge skips to get around some of the terrible dailies you can have. Of course, you can spend real money on them too. Season 2 will barely add anything and is coming in May: two new maps, three new modes (recycled from older games) - that’s the only stuff announced so far - not even a new gun. The devs are pointing towards seasons 3 and 4 for the actual content like Forge mode and campaign co-op. I'll wait a year to go back to the multiplayer, fine, but how many people are going to do the same? They fumbled it, and numbers are never going to be as strong, even when new content finally drops. I know the game's called Halo Infinite and it's meant to be around for a long time, but 343 should consider what's next for the franchise soon.
For a game supposedly developed for 6 years it’s been cobbled together in the past 3. Imagine the state it would be in if it actually released for the next-gen Xbox launches, funny looking enemies and all.
And, for the love of God. I need a (new) weapon.