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Halo Infinite Post-Launch: The Pros and Cons of No Battle Royale Mode

Halo Infinite Post-Launch: The Pros and Cons of No Battle Royale Mode Image
  • Posted on 08th Apr, 2022 17:15 PM

Players are eagerly awaiting the second season of Halo Infinite, but debate continues over whether a battle royale mode would be beneficial.

p>While Halo Infinite received widespread acclaim for its multiplayer PvP component on launch, since then players have been clamoring for more content after five months with no major updates. Season 2, titled "Lone Wolves," will release in May, and should be a significant milestone in helping the game achieve its live-service potential. Debate continues on whether Halo Infinite should receive a battle royale (BR) mode as one piece of new content, but there are pretty equal reasons why it shouldn't have one in the first place.

Halo Infinite finds itself in a market dominated by live-service FPS battle royales such as Apex Legends and Call of Duty: Warzone. It's no surprise that the BR debate started as soon as it was announced that Halo Infinite multiplayer was free-to-play, however community feedback has been divided. This division of the community's desires comes down to both the market the game finds itself in, and the legacy of its franchise already having plenty of unique and interesting ways to play.

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A Risky Move

While BR games and modes are extremely popular among casual and competitive players, particularly on streaming platforms, developing a BR mode for a game which has never been balanced for one is risky. Within the BR market, there have been huge hits but equally large misses. Battlefield 5's "Firestorm," Call of Duty's "Blackout," and Ubisoft's dedicated BR Hyperscape rapidly decreased in popularity despite efforts to bring them to public attention.

When the BR concept was young and popular thanks to the release of games such as PUBG, developing a Halo BR may have made sense. Now that player expectations for BR games are higher, even with the backing of major franchises, it would be a risky move for Halo Infinite to join a saturated market. Even if it would be a popular endeavor among the community if done right, doing it wrong could cause lasting damage.

Halo's Balancing Act

Halo Infinite already requires consistent updates to the core game with its free-to-play model and seasonal approach. To develop a BR mode on top of this would take valuable development time away from each season, with 343 industries already struggling to maintain a regular content schedule. Community feedback on the game, despite the current lack of content, has been positive. Its combination of new and old Halo systems has made Halo arguably as satisfying as it has ever been. So while BR modes are popular, and no doubt something that Halo Infinite could capitalize on, fans of the game seem to want more of what's already there, not redevelopment into something it doesn't need.

When Halo Infinite released, it was lauded for being a return to the franchises' roots while including new and innovative gameplay features - a massive undertaking considering its cult following among players. As it stands, the gameplay that Halo Infinite has seen the most praise for does not lend itself to a BR sandbox, and would require a huge undertaking to change its coveted formula. There is a case for Halo to have a BR, and there are even some hints within the game that a BR-type mode is coming, but at present it seems more feasible to build upon its strong foundations

Other BRs in the market are seeing success in diversifying their gameplay to focus on team-based alternatives, which Halo is known to excel in. Apex has seen the popularity of Arena and Control modes thrive, the former of which is now a permanent feature and the latter likely to go the same way. Halo Infinite has a solid foundation to build on, which 343 no doubt has long-term plans for. But that foundation would have to be built up again to establish a BR mode, even if it might be a valuable asset for the games' seasonal approach.

Halo Infinite is available now on PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S.

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