It’s hard to overstate the excitement of the Xbox community following the surprise release of multiplayer for Infinite Halo November 15. After over six years of hiatus, the Master Chief was finally back in a new main game and brought a fun multiplayer experience with it. Predictably, this initial hype caused the game to skyrocket in the rankings on both Steam and Xbox consoles. It even managed to have the most successful launch in Halo the franchise’s history, with more than 20 million players watching the game. Despite this strong start, new data shows that its success may be short-lived.
Recently it was revealed that Infinite Halo had dropped out of the top 5 most played Xbox games. At the time of writing, it ranks 6th on the list behind Roblox. For comparison, other popular shooters like fortnite, Call of Duty: Warzoneand Apex Legends all seated in front Infinite Halo. Additionally, the latest episode of Halo The series has started losing players on Steam, as it is currently outside the platform’s top 100 games according to Steam Charts. Add to that a dwindling number of viewers on Twitch, and the situation doesn’t look too promising.
Among the possible reasons why players have stopped playing Infinite Halo, one of the biggest factors was connection issues. While this isn’t the only issue the player base is having, it’s arguably the most frustrating as it directly impacts multiplayer gameplay. Since launch, players have had to deal with a lot of annoying issues, such as desynchronization which forces players to randomly teleport across the map. Additionally, Big Team Battle, a classic game mode in the series, was nearly unplayable for weeks due to matchmaking complications. Despite recent developer patches that are supposed to fix some of these Infinite Halo connectivity issues, it might be too little too late for some gamers.
In addition to stability issues affecting multiplayer, another contentious area in Infinite Halo is cosmetic. Although this issue does not directly impact gameplay, many fans believe that the items available in the in-game store are unfairly priced. Additionally, most of those same fans felt that at launch, Season 1 Battle Pass progress was too slow. While it’s worth noting that the developers have been looking to improve these systems over the past two months, many players still feel like there’s still work to be done.
Besides these problems of Infinite Halo, another factor related to the drop in player numbers could be a lack of in-game content. For example, players continue to wait for the inclusion of the series’ staple Forge mode and co-op campaign. To make matters worse, a planned update to these features for January has been postponed. This has led many to wonder when these highly anticipated modes will enter the game.
Another contributing factor to poor player retention could be the lack of popularity of arena shooters. Compared to other types of games, arena shooters are only a small slice of the gaming pie. As the 5 most played Xbox games indicate, some of the most popular titles in the industry are battle royales. While rumors of a Infinite Halo Battle Royale has been circulating for months, there is currently no official word from 343 Industries regarding the inclusion of this type of game in the future. As a result, the game seems to continue as an arena-style shooter for the foreseeable future.
It will be interesting to see what the future holds Infinite Halo. If this drop in active players is a worrying sign for the first-person shooter, the game is still only a few months old. With that in mind, more updates are expected, which could give the game another boost in popularity. It seems only time will tell if the developers at 343 Industries can bring back players who have already moved on to other games.
Infinite Halo is available on PC, Xbox One and Xbox Series X/S.
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