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Halo Infinite: Release Date, Gameplay, and What We Know So Far

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Over timethanHalo Infinite remains to be on the top of gamers’ minds despite all the reworks and delays the game has gone through. Although Xbox and developer 343 Industries have shown a few trailers and little gameplay of Master Chief’s next adventure, there’s plenty of information to mine out of them. If you’re looking for everything you need to know about Halo Infinite from the release date to all the new weapons in the game you’ve come to the right place.

When is the Halo Infinite Release Date?

Halo Infinite has a Fall 2021 release date. Unfortunately, we don’t know the exact month or day when the game will launch.

Halo Infinite was originally scheduled to release during holiday 2020 but an announced delay in August 2020 pushed the release date back into an unlisted 2021 date.

The game is slated to release on Xbox Series X, PC, and Xbox One with Smart Delivery support and it will be optimized for every platform. At one point, Head of Xbox Phil Spencer said first-party games like Halo Infinite will be available on Xbox Game Pass at launch.

Is Halo Infinite Open World?

To date, we’ve only seen exactly nine minutes of campaign gameplay that was released during the 2020 Xbox Games Showcase Livestream. From that footage, it was clear Halo Infinite was designed with more open-world gameplay in mind to give players more freedom.

Rather than linear levels, the Master Chief will be able to explore around an entire halo ring where players might come across a skull in the environment or happen across a Covenant outpost.

Playing as the Master Chief will also feel different this time since he now has upgrades and a tech tree. Overtime players will unlock new equipment such as a drop shield and a grappling hook. Halo games in the past have had upgrades like rocket packs and armor locks, but instead of limited pickups, it appears these upgrades will stay throughout your playthrough.

Unfortunately, though, dual-wielding won’t be coming back once again but you can potentially knock enemies off of the halo ring.

Halo Infinite Graphics

Halo’s graphics have been a hot debate for years. After strong community feedback over Halo 4, Halo 5: Guardians, and Halo Wars 2, 343 Industries went back to more legacy aesthetics pulled from the original trilogy.

Unfortunately, even with the new/old art style the community wasn’t satisfied with the visual fidelity Halo Infinite presented. The gameplay demo was filled with object pop-in, plastic-like textures, and flat lighting. To that end, 343 Industries has promised to raise the overall level of fidelity and presentation of the final game.

We’re hoping to get our first glimpse of Halo Infinite’s reworked graphics at E3 2021 soon.

Halo Infinite Story

Halo Infinite and its story were first teased with a trailer at E3 2018, a cinematic trailer called Discover Hope at E3 2019 with a secret audio message from Cortana, and lastly a teaser video with a message from The Banished.

In July 2020, IGN got a chance to sit down with 343 Industries developers Chris Lee and Paul Crocker to reveal more about the game’s story and villain. First off Halo Infinite takes place well after the ending of Halo 5 and the Master Chief is even more of a man out of time than he was at the start of Halo 4.

So far trailers have shown a pilot finding the Master Chief floating in space after the UNSC and Earth apparently have much less influence on the galaxy. Meanwhile, the latest developer commentary trailer from the Xbox and Bethesda Showcase during E3 2021, shows us Cortana is returning to the series in one form or another.

The back and forth between the Master Chief and this new AI reveals the rogue and rampant Cortana was captured and scheduled for deletion, but plans didn’t go as expected. The trailer ends with Master Chief inserting the new Cortana into the back of his helmet just like his old virtual companion.

But what is clear is Halo Infinite’s main enemies are The Banished in Infinite – a rogue faction of Brutes from Halo Wars 2. The main villain is the banished’s leader War Chief Escharum who has taken control of the halo ring as his last stand against the Master Chief.

There could also be another mystery character that’ll play into the story that’s called “The Harbinger,” which may or may not be Cortana.

Is Halo Infinite Co-op?

343 Industries confirmed Halo infinite’s story campaign will support co-op for two players in local split-screen and four players while online.

Halo Infinite – New Screenshots February 2021

Will Halo Infinite Have Microtransactions?

A job listing for an Online Experience Design Director at 343 Industries revealed Halo Infinite will have microtransactions. The job description includes the design and implementation of “progression in- and out-of-game; microtransactions and integration of our business plan throughout the game; and, finally, social and engagement features that encourage players to return again and again with their friends.” It’s worth noting microtransactions have existed in previous Halo entries.

Responding to a Halo YouTube creator’s concern over microtransactions in Halo Infinite, Studio Head Chris Lee said, “We’re still working through final plans and will share more when we are ready, but I can definitely say that Halo Infinite will not include real-money loot boxes.”

Will Halo Infinite Be Cross-Play?

Halo Infinite will support multiplayer cross-play and cross-progression across PC (on Microsoft Store and Steam), Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S.

Will Halo Infinite Have a Battle Royale Mode?

343’s Jeff Easterling and James Bachici stated long ago in June 2019 that Halo Infinite won’t have a battle royale mode and noted that “the only BR we’re really interested in is Battle Rifle.” No one at the company has stated a change in opinion since then.

What New Weapons Are in Halo Infinite

No new Halo game would be complete without an arsenal of new weapons. Thankfully Halo Infinite already has quite a few new armaments and these are just the ones we know about so far without playing the game yet. On top of these new weapons, we can confirm the return of the energy sword and the gravity hammer.

  • Ravager – A Banished three-round burst energy weapon that runs on plasma fuel. The fuel level is, as always, represented by a percentage. There is a blade on the end of it that slightly increases melee damage.
  • Mangler – A Banished pistol with giant kinetic projectiles that fires more slowly than the UNSC pistol but deals more damage.
  • CQS48 Bulldog – New UNSC riot shotgun that replaces the classic shotgun. This one is upgraded with a dum magazine and 12 gauge over the classic shotgun’s 8 gauge.
  • VK78 Commando – This UNSC rifle can go full auto and is good for mid-long range.
  • Pulse Carbine – A familiar but not quite identical version of the classic Covenant carbine weapon.

Andrew Smith is a freelance contributor at IGN. Follow him on Twitter @_andrewtsmith.

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