The Halo Infinite Gameplay Reveal was the centerpiece of the Xbox Games Showcase. The world finally got a taste of the next installment in the venerable franchise. It’s a mostly solid –and very pretty– effort, although it’s not without its problems.
It starts off strong with the pairing of a pilot of who is accompanying Master Chief. This character is the most surprising part of this reveal, because of the strong performance from the actor bringing him to life. He’s expressive and convincing in this scene, and it adds a nice change of pace in comparison to the stoic nature of the Chief.
Once the Master Chief heads out to handle some business we get to see what has always made Halo so great, the combat. Everything is tightly crafted and it looks like it feels fun to play. There are a lot of weapons on display, with mainstays being prominently shown. The wrinkle in this one seems to be a grappling hook that the Chief can use to traverse the level and use while fighting opponents. I’m not sure how to feel about the grappling hook just yet.
While the game looks very nice, I did notice some hiccups that are a little concerning because this is where you want to show the absolute best the game has to offer. There are several instances where art assets can be seen popping into the game world, which is something that in theory should be a thing of the past because the Xbox Series X is using an SSD. Nothing too bad, but still noticeable. I do wonder if the move to also offer games on Xbox One is at the root of this issue.
The gameplay reveal ends with the worst part. A villain delivers a message to Master Chief, and his speech is just flat out bad. The character talks as if he knows he’s in a video game, instead of just being a character that exists in this world. It would have been far better for him to just boast about his side’s victories and challenge Master Chief to come after him. Big yikes on this one, and a disappointing ending to an otherwise solid reveal.
As a Halo fan I’m conflicted about what I’ve seen so far. The gameplay does look solid and an attempt to return to classic Halo. However, it still feels as if 343 Studios still don’t know what they’re doing with the story. Especially with the villain. You can check out the gameplay reveal below.