Saturday, September 19, 2020
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Halo Infinite multiplayer is free-to-play and 120fps claims source

Halo Infinite multiplayer is free-to-play and 120fps claims source
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Halo Infinite – is Master Chief’s multiplayer free-to-play? (pic: Microsoft)

An online shop description of Halo Infinite may have given away more than it should, with the revelation that Halo Infinite’s multiplayer will be free.

Given the controversy over its graphics there’s one Halo Infinite announcement that people keep overlooking: it’s a games as a service title.

Microsoft didn’t use the phrase (or the alternative ‘live service game’), just like they refused to call it open world, but instead described it as ‘the start of our platform for the future’ and insisted that there wouldn’t be a Halo Infinite 2 for at least 10 years.

The implication is that it will work something like Destiny, although like most things connected with the last gen the details remain obscure and it’s been left to a source as unlikely as the Smyths toy shop chain to reveal that the multiplayer component is free-to-play.

That seems a peculiar revelation on a number of levels, starting with why Smyths would know that and nobody else. But they are now one of the most import high street retailers for games in the UK, so Microsoft are certain to be talking to them at the moment, especially in terms of selling consoles.

Smyths has a sizeable section on the Xbox Series X and includes this description of Halo Infinite: ‘The legendary Halo series returns with the most expansive Master Chief campaign yet and a groundbreaking free-to-play multiplayer experience. Enjoy up to 120 FPS and greatly reduced load times creating seamless gameplay with Xbox Series X.’

It’s possible the term free-to-play could be an oblique reference to Game Pass but it doesn’t sound like it. In fact, it’s hard to take the description at anything other than face value, so either it’s been made up by some overexcited Smyths employee or Halo Infinite’s multiplayer really is going to be free – with all that implies about microtransactions and monetisation.

Microsoft purposefully didn’t say anything about Halo Infinite’s multiplayer during the Xbox Games Showcase and a revelation like this could explain why.

Update: The description has been removed from Smyths’ website – always a good indication that something is true – and respected Xbox leaker Klobrille has chimed in to say that everything is true, with the monetisation taking the form of a Fortnite style battle pass system.

120fps is also not something that has been mentioned before, and while 60fps is highly desirable for most games (compared to 30fps) there’s considerable debate over whether 120fps makes enough of a difference to be worth taking away power and resources from other things, which may in turn explain why Halo Infinite’s graphics are less than cutting edge.

Developer 343 Industries haven’t used that as an excuse yet, but a new blog post has seen them admit that the game disappointed in its initial unveil.

They refused to apologise for the art style, which is fair enough, but they did commit themselves to improving the ‘visual fidelity’.

‘We do have work to do to address some of these areas and raise the level of fidelity and overall presentation for the final game’, reads the blog. ‘The build used to run the campaign demo was work-in-progress from several weeks ago with a variety of graphical elements and game systems still being finished and polished.

‘While some of the feedback was expected and speaks to areas already in progress, other aspects of the feedback have brought new opportunities and considerations to light that the team is taking very seriously and working to assess.

‘We don’t have firm answers or outcomes to share yet but the team is working as quickly as possible on plans to address some of the feedback around detail, clarity, and overall fidelity. The team is committed and focused on making sure we have a beautiful world for players to explore when we launch.’

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MORE: Halo Infinite is being remade on PS4 in Dreams

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MORE: Halo Infinite just killed the Xbox Series X – Reader’s Feature

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