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No, Cyberpunk 2077 isn't proof that Halo Infinite should skip Xbox One

Halo Infinite
Halo Infinite (Image credit: Xbox Game Studios)

While Cyberpunk 2077 runs relatively fine on PC and the powerful Xbox Series X, the performance on last-gen consoles such as the original Xbox One is, so far, horrible. As a result, some (including my colleague Richard Devine) are using these performance issues to argue that, if Xbox One support isn't removed, the same problems will occur with Halo Infinite when it releases later next year. Here's why I don't think that will be the case, and why Halo Infinite should ultimately remain Xbox One compatible.

One of these games is not like the other

The biggest reason that I think the comparisons being drawn between Cyberpunk 2077 and Halo Infinite aren't valid is because these are two vastly different games. Cyberpunk 2077 is a gargantuan open-world RPG set in a dense, urban environment filled with countless NPCs, vehicles, and interiors. Many of the NPCs in this world can have full conversations with the player as well, meaning that on top of everything mentioned above, there's a full dialogue system in place that requires resources too. This type of setting is probably murdering the weaker CPU used by the base Xbox One.

Meanwhile, Halo Infinite's campaign looks to be a non-linear shooter set in a series of smaller open areas instead of one big world — much like 2019's Metro Exodus. This will no doubt make loading in locations easier and less taxing. Additionally, Halo Infinite's NPCs are also most likely going to be less numerous and complex, as players will be going up against squads of enemies programmed solely for combat rather than crowds of AI that walk around, converse with you, and fight.

With games such as Far Cry: New Dawn, developers have proven that the Xbox One can run modern open-ended shooters well enough that they are, at the least, playable. And while it's true that the next-gen graphics of Halo Infinite will most likely be more impressive than games built for last-gen like New Dawn, it's important to remember that developers can scale graphics quality up and down depending on the system you're playing it on thanks to Xbox Smart Delivery.

Optimizations for Cyberpunk 2077 may come

Source: Windows Central (Image credit: Source: Windows Central)

Another reason why I don't like using Cyberpunk 2077's poor performance as an example is because the game just came out. While it's true that there's no excuse for the game's poor Xbox One performance, it's crucial to remember that modern AAA titles launch with lots of performance issues often. In most cases, games that launch in bad states are eventually patched up and optimized for improved performance.

If the game is still near-unplayable on Xbox One after CD PROJEKT RED makes a dedicated effort to improve the game's performance, I may feel differently. However, until that happens, I would rather be reserved with my judgements. It's entirely possible that this isn't an issue with the hardware, but rather a problem with how the developers optimized the game for it.

Halo Infinite can be sunset on Xbox One

Source: Xbox Game Studios (Image credit: Source: Xbox Game Studios)

Another argument I've seen people make is that even if Halo Infinite launches in a good state on Xbox One, it will eventually run into Cyberpunk 2077-style problems as 343 Industries updates and upgrades it over time. After all, Halo Infinite represents the next 10 years of Halo according to the developers — how can they evolve the game on next-gen hardware while simultaneously keeping it suitable for the base Xbox One?

The answer is, quite simply, that they won't. Microsoft can sunset Halo Infinite's Xbox One version once additions to the game become too advanced for the console to handle, giving 343 Industries the freedom they need to build on and expand the next-gen scope of the game. This happened with games like the original Destiny and Grand Theft Auto V as they became too advanced for the Xbox 360 to keep up with; there's no reason why it can't happen here.

Your thoughts

What do you think? Do you agree with me that Cyberpunk 2077's launch woes aren't a valid example to point to for arguing why Halo Infinite shouldn't be on Xbox One? Let me know.

Cyberpunk 2077 is out now on Xbox Series X, Xbox Series S, PlayStation 5, Xbox One and PlayStation 4 consoles, and Windows 10 PCs. It costs $60, and is no doubt one of the best RPGs on PC or any other platform. Halo Infinite will be available for $60 on all Xbox consoles and Windows 10 PCs come Fall 2021.

Brendan Lowry is a Windows Central writer and Oakland University graduate with a burning passion for video games, of which he's been an avid fan since childhood. You'll find him doing reviews, editorials, and general coverage on everything Xbox and PC. Follow him on Twitter.

  • LoL! I never thought I would see competing articles within hours of each other!
  • At that point they should really skip Xbox One and make this game shine on every level by focusing on Xbox Series. They had 5 years to buil a Halo game on XBox One, they didn't
  • Richard and I are quick to write when passionate!
  • I also agree that they are completely different types of games, and we shouldn't be so quick to assume that all next gen games will suffer as much as Cyberpunk 2077 upon launch.
  • Yep. Maybe my opinion will shift if this becomes a trend or if repeated optimization attempts fail, but until then, I want to be reserved
  • The game should have been made for the ground up for the Series S/X, but now it's too late for that, the game is only 1 year from launch, the majority of the games already made, there's nothing they can do. Cyberpunk 2077 isn't a good example because the game is a buggy mess and we can't expect such buggy messes to also not have performance problems.
  • Brendan, I agree with your reasoning, but possibly not with the conclusion. Specifically, with Halo Infinite not coming out until late next year, I don't know that there is enough value in supporting original gen Xbox One for it to be worthwhile. I agree with you that they COULD, but not necessarily that they SHOULD. This may be a case of a release only Series X / S boxes doing more good in helping to drive their sales. As you point out, MS could always drop support (and probably will) for the Xbox One in future updates. But given that eventuality, why bend over backwards to optimize for Xbox One in the first place? I suppose if the goal is maximum supported life of existing hardware, then that's the reason to do it. If the game were coming out now, I'd probably think they should strive to include support for the Xbox One, but in almost a year? At that point, I think they should just support the Xbox One in a maintenance mode, ensuring all services still work, keep providing updates and extending content for existing Xbox One games as needed, but not new top-tier game releases.
  • I think it's worth doing personally considering how strapped a lot of people tend to be for money these days...if people can't afford a new console but can drop $60 on Infinite, they'll be happy. (Plus, Game Pass is also a thing, and Infinite will be on it) Also, keep in mind that there are people who spent $500 on X1X in 2017. I think those people would be bummed if Infinite wasn't supported on it since that was a relatively recent release. If it proves to be overly difficult to accomplish, I think it should be dropped. But if it can feasibly be done without too much strain on the developers, I think it's worth doing.
  • I think it's about establishing realistic expectations. It should look and perhaps play better on the Series X, but should still play well on X1 with less graphical fidelity cause obvs the X1 has way less horsepower
  • Can someone explain to me what the quality setting on the Series X actually does? Because apart from completely tanking the frame rate, I cannot see any actual difference.
  • I wonder if it due to the system doing a good job upscaling the output back to 4k? I haven't tried quality mode yet. I will do that when I get back on my good TV to see if I can see a difference.
  • I agree with you. Putting both articles up looks weird, but well, double the clicks.