Yesterday, Microsoft shadow dropped Halo Infinite’s multiplayer three weeks before it’s intended launch in celebration of Xbox 20th anniversary, and unsurprisingly, it’s got off to a flying start. Though currently technically in beta, the free-to-play multiplayer features everything it was supposed to have upon its actual launch, which includes all the modes, maps, cosmetics, and the first Battle Pass. Essentially, Halo Infinite’s first multiplayer season, Heroes of Reach, has kicked off early.
As it turns out though, not only has it kicked off early, it’s also going to last longer than expected. In a blog update on Halo Waypoint, 343 Industries’ head of creative Joseph Staten announced that Season 1 of the shooter’s multiplayer will now last until May 2022. While 343 Industries had previously announced that each season would last three months, the developer has now chosen to extend the first season by a couple of months in order to give itself more time to finish up work on Season 2.
“When you start playing the beta, you will notice in the Battle Pass UI that Season 1 will last from now until May 2022, which is a change from our original goal of shipping a new Season every three months,” Staten wrote. “We made the decision to extend Season 1 to give ourselves more time to ensure Season 2 meets our high quality bar and so we can finish development for Season 2 in a healthy and sustainable way for our team.”
Staten says that along with the extension, Season 1 is also being buffed up, which means additional events, content, customization items, and more. He wrote: “Importantly, with the Season 1 extension, we aren’t just stretching-out our original Season 1 plan. Indeed, we took this opportunity to add additional events, customization items and other content to Season 1 to make it an even richer experience from start to finish. For example, starting today and through the first week, you can log-in to Halo Infinite to unlock a free collection of 20th anniversary themed cosmetics. Following this free reward period, the start of our Season 1 opening event, ‘Fracture: Tenrai’, will kick off on November 23. This will be your first of multiple opportunities to earn Season 1’s samurai-themed armor pieces and other customization items.”
Of course, with 343 Industries previously having announced that Halo Infinite won’t have campaign co-op or Forge at launch, there are questions about what this means for their arrival. Campaign co-op, after all, was expected to arrive with Season 2, while Forge was supposed to be added with Season 3. So does this mean those have been delayed as well?
The answer is… unclear. Staten says more details will be shared in January.
“In January, after all of you have had a chance to play Halo Infinite’s expansive and adventure-filled campaign starting December 8th, and all of us on the Halo Infinite team have had an opportunity to recharge our energy shields over the holidays, we will have more details to share about the Season 1 event calendar as well as our Season 2, campaign co-op, and Forge release plans.”
Halo Infinite’s multiplayer beta is available on Xbox Series X/S, Xbox One, and PC, and all progress will carry over into the full game when it launches, alongside the single player campaign, on December 8.