Why I'm Worried About Halo Infinite
Updated: Sep 15, 2021
The most anticipated Xbox game of the year is making me the most anxious...and not in a good way.
Let me start by saying this- I love Halo and want nothing but the best for my favorite video game. Having played Halo more than any other game in my 30-something years of gaming, I'm definitely a fan of the franchise. But lately, I've grown worrisome over the information coming down the pipeline for Halo Infinite.
“So, it's okay to borrow the microtransaction aspect of Fortnite, but adding a Battle Royale mode is too much?"
Give Us Something!
The 343i team has been quite tight-lipped when it comes to Halo Infinite and for good reason. I mean, the last time they showed off gameplay they were swiftly berated online for the graphics, the soulless Brute, and the predictable gameplay. Sure, we got at a look at a few new items- most notably the grapple hook, but this seems all too familiar. These types of movement mechanics have been present in quite a few iterations of games over the years between Halo 5 and Halo Infinite. Call of Duty has tried different movement mechanics in different games, most of which haven't stood the test of time. I understand the need for updated movement within the Halo game as older iterations of the game can feel slow compared to the speed of new shooters, but these additions don't seem fresh- they feel borrowed from other franchises and less innovative and unique to Halo.
When asked about a Battle Royale mode, a developer responded by saying the only BR they were interested in was the Battle Rifle. This cheeky response was cute, but it also worries me that they haven't even considered adding a Battle Royale mode to Halo when it clearly is set up for that particular gameplay style. Regardless of your thoughts on Fortnite, Warzone, PUBG, or Battle Royale modes in general, there's a reason for their popularity. They're unpredictable and random in the best ways and create memorable moments for months, if not years, on end. I'm not saying a Halo Battle Royale mode has to be a carbon copy of others, there are definitely ways to spice it up for the Halo universe, but to not even entertain the idea is quite telling.
I know what you're thinking- "They haven't even shown us multiplayer gameplay yet, so why are you getting worked up?!" And that's exactly my point- we know absolutely nothing about the multiplayer aspect of Halo Infinite. Well, I guess we know that there will, in fact, be microtransactions for cosmetics similar to Fortnite or Call of Duty, and that worries me. When the only solid information we've been given about a game is how they intend on continuously draining money out of their player base, that isn't a good sign. So, it's okay to borrow the microtransaction aspect of Fortnite, but adding a Battle Royale mode is too much?
We've Been Down This Road Before...
So much time was spent on weapon balancing in Halo 5 that a pro team was hired to help usher in a competitive and pro scene that was both stable and fresh. In fact, so much attention was given to the pro scene in Halo 5 that much of the community's cries for fun and casual game modes went unheard for most of Halo 5's popularity. It wasn't until the game had lost most of its player base that they began to add those types of game modes to entice more fans to return.
All these things combined make me worried about the future of Halo as a franchise. Don't get me wrong, I will 100% buy the game and enjoy it for several months, but the question remains. What will keep me coming back? What will make Halo Infinite seem fresh and new? How will 343i compete with other shooter games in the current gaming market? Only time will tell...