Following today’s big gameplay reveal for Halo Infinite, interviews with 343 Industries have revealed a number of things about the game and what it means for the future of the franchise. In particular, it will be a “platform for the future” with 343 preferring to deliver new story content within Halo Infinite instead of releasing full standalone sequels.
So… it’s a live game then, right? Not… not quite.
Speaking to IGN, Halo Infinite Studio Head Chris Lee said, “Halo Infinite is the start of our platform for the future. We want Infinite to grow over time, versus going to those numbered titles and having all that segmentation that we had before. It’s really about creating Halo Infinite as the start of the next ten years for Halo and then building that as we go with our fans and community.”
Yeah, that really sounds like a live game, and is particularly reminiscent of the 10 year plan that Bungie had when they set out to create the Destiny series. However, instead of having monthly content drops of an online looter shooter, it seems to instead mean that new stories will be added under the Halo Infinite brand, perhaps more like traditional expansion packs. You could maybe look to Halo: The Master Chief Collection and 343’s long term commitment to maintaining that collection of games.
There’s plenty of scope to do that, with the game featuring an open world elements far beyond what previous games have achieved. As shown in the gameplay reveal, you can bring up a map of the area and pick mission objectives to tackle within that space. It’s not the whole ring, it seems, but that much larger sections of the ring will be open for you to explore.
Lee said, “I would think about it more like kind of delivering on that promise we’ve had from the past. There’s a lot of open gameplay in those previous games, but they’re always in these linear levels. This time players will have the freedom to explore the ring. But we are telling a story with a beginning, middle, and end that we want to carry the player through as you go.”
Oh, and there’s a day/night cycle through this. That could be a factor in why the game will not have raytracing support on day one for Xbox Series X. Instead this will be added in an update sometimes after launch.
Halo Infinite will be out for Xbox Series X, Xbox One and PC Holiday 2020.