Halo Infinite (Xbox Series X/S) Review

By Neil Flynn 17.04.2022 1

Review for Halo Infinite on Xbox Series X/S

The lynchpin of the Xbox catalogue, the Halo series has been an important, integral, and essential part of the identity of the Xbox brand. That isn't to say that the Xbox brand hasn't diversified its portfolio - there are other games that arguably hold their ground in terms of importance, and it is a testament to say that the Xbox Series X|S launched without a brand new Halo release. This is even more pertinent when considering that it was obvious that Microsoft wanted to launch the consoles with Halo Infinite, but after a few rough graphical hitches were noticed in the initial reveal trailer back in 2020 the game got delayed in order to offer more time to correct the issues. Halo Infinite launched at the tail end of 2021, with an online multiplayer BETA in November and the Campaign following in December, but was it all worth the wait?

Starting with the multiplayer, it is free to play for all. The move to free-to-play certainly helped put Halo Infinite one step ahead of the other first-person shooters that released at the end of 2021, notably Battlefield 2042 and Call of Duty Vanguard. For the most part Halo Infinite's online multiplayer is free, with the exception of the Battle Pass which, like other f2p titles, rewards players cosmetic items for armour, skins for weapons, and items.

There are numerous modes to partake in, and with Ranked Arena there are four modes of play; Slayer (deathmatch), Capture the Flag, Oddball (hold the objective) and Strongholds (King of the Hill). There are a number of non-ranked modes to sink your teeth into, including a 12v12 large scale big team battle, a free for all slayer and Fiesta. The latter is essentially Slayer, but with random weapons upon spawning, which certainly feels like a lottery half the time. There are enough modes to satiate the player base, and remember this is free to play, so it certainly offers a generous amount.

Screenshot for Halo Infinite on Xbox Series X/S

The most commendable asset that Halo Infinite has in its arsenal is the natural flow of the gunplay. Traversal, aiming, shooting, reloading, swapping weapons, lobbing grenades, and using the various items of equipment all feel satisfying to execute. It adds to the momentum, and given how quickly things can change during multiplayer matches it always gives teams a chance to get back into it. It isn't quite on the level of Doom Eternal, but there haven't been many other games in the last decade or so that have nailed all of this down to a tee.

There is however an issue. Opening the multiplayer up via crossplay has seen an abundance of cheaters coming in from PC players, including things like wall-hacks, aim bots, and aim-assist. The issues have driven players away in their droves with developer 343 Industries doing little to address the abundant and blatant cheating in its online multiplayer - even simple requests to remove the crossplay option have fallen on deaf ears. In its current state, five months after launch, it can be a frustrating affair, and the only saving grace is to have a cheater on your team… but what fun is that? On occasion there is a game where it is apparent that there are no cheaters on either side, which only adds to disappointment to see it in such a beleaguered state knowing what it could be.

Screenshot for Halo Infinite on Xbox Series X/S

The campaign makes up the other half, and is free for all Xbox Game Pass subscribers, or is available from the store for non-subscribers. This certainly plays different to the standard first-person shooter. Halo Infinite has an open world approach, sort of. The sandbox style approach still has linear straightforward traditional mission archetypes, but then Master Chief would end up back in the open world. It is not as if the open-world that he gets to travel is huge either, in comparison to modern day adventures, but there's a number of side-missions and quests to be completed. Getting rid of the enemy encampments, rewards Master Chief with Valor, which can used to purchase weapons and vehicles.

Screenshot for Halo Infinite on Xbox Series X/S

One new item of equipment, the grappleshot, is the pièce de resistance for Halo Infinite, which is a glorified hookshot, and while Master Chief doesn't become Spider-Man, swinging from building to building, this gadget does allow for a satisfying mix of gameplay being used for either combat or traversal. This device can be used to hook on to an enemy to unleash a one hit kill melee punch, to reach high places, or to retrieve weapons - or even the flag in multiplayer.

Graphically Halo Infinite stands up well, both in campaign and multiplayer, with environments being detailed, and character designs looking the part. Characters are well animated, but also have great voice overs to match the part, with Master Chief's partners, The Weapon and The Pilot forming a great addition to the cast - and that is not forgetting Escharum, the War Chief, who plays the villainous role well enough. The soundtrack is also significantly atmospheric, which has always been a staple of the franchise, and continues to be as good as it has always been. Microsoft is even so proud of the soundtrack that it has released it on Spotify simultaneously with the campaign launch for all to listen to for free.

Screenshot for Halo Infinite on Xbox Series X/S

Cubed3 Rating

9/10
Rated 9 out of 10

Exceptional - Gold Award

Rated 9 out of 10

Halo is back to its best with Halo Infinite, tight controls, and seriously thirst-quenching gunplay that feels so intuitively satisfying. Traversal has been improved hugely by the addition of the grappleshot, allowing Master Chief to zip around at speed, as well as adding a unique element for multiplayer matches. A particular dampener has to be directed at the online multiplayer, which is riddled with cheaters, but, if they were to be removed then the multiplayer offers a solid free-to-play experience that is fast and frantic. Halo Infinite, alongside a number of other Xbox first-party titles is a great addition to Xbox Game Pass, and it is certainly a marquee game that warrants a subscription to the service.

Developer

343

Publisher

Xbox Game Studios

Genre

First Person Shooter

Players

1

C3 Score

Rated $score out of 10  9/10

Reader Score

Rated $score out of 10  0 (0 Votes)

European release date Out now   North America release date Out now   Japan release date Out now   Australian release date Out now   

Comments

It's ace you enjoyed it so much! I've been thinking hard since I beat the game and my personal score for Infinite is something like a 6. I won't go into it but I loved it loads too, I hope that you manage to retain that feeling going forward!

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