Microsoft has delayed Halo Infinite into 2021, citing developmental challenges.
Previously, Halo Infinite was slated to launch in the Holiday season of 2020, alongside Microsoft's next-gen Xbox Series X. Microsoft has reiterated that Halo Infinite's delay will not impact the console itself. Xbox Series X is confirmed to launch in November 2020, alongside the full library of Xbox One backward compatible titles and games such as The Medium.
In a blog post on Halo Waypoint, Microsoft offered some detail on Halo Infinite's delay, and how 343i has been impacted by Microsoft's wider corporate work-from-home policy, owing to the Covid-19 pandemic.
While it may sting a little that the Xbox Series X won't drop with its big-name exclusive at launch, ensuring Halo Infinite launches in a high-quality state is of the utmost importance. Halo has declined in mainstream popularity in recent years and certainly isn't the trendy game played by youngsters as it once was. Halo Infinite will launch with a free-to-play multiplayer component in addition to its premium campaign experience, set in a wider sandbox with a broader scope. It has every chance to capture mainstream attention with this formula, but only if it ships with the quality expected of a next-gen AAA franchise.
When Microsoft revealed Halo Infinite the Craig meme became an overnight viral hit, initially as a negative commentary on the game's visuals, which return Halo to the vibrant, stylized format of the original trilogy. The way the game looks has certainly been a talking point among fans of the franchise and the wider community in general, and hopefully, this delay will help 343i elevate the game a little to meet expectations.
Halo Infinite certainly wasn't the first game delayed by Covid-19, and it most likely won't be the last either. But the stakes are high for Halo, and I feel like shipping it in a sub-standard state isn't an option at this stage of the game. What do you think? Hit the comments, let us know.
Xbox Series X/S
Get the Windows Central Newsletter
All the latest news, reviews, and guides for Windows and Xbox diehards.
Jez Corden a Managing Editor at Windows Central, focusing primarily on all things Xbox and gaming. Jez is known for breaking exclusive news and analysis as relates to the Microsoft ecosystem while being powered by caffeine. Follow on Twitter @JezCorden and listen to his Xbox Two podcast, all about, you guessed it, Xbox!