Update: Halo Infinite's co-op mode has been delayed again.
Halo Infinite’s multiplayer may be getting some changes in the near future — changes that may take some influence from Call of Duty Warzone and a long-forgotten Halo 4 game mode. Or at least that’s according to new job listings from Halo developer 343 Industries.
The listing is for the position of Writing Director (opens in new tab) based out of Redmond, Washington. One of the responsibilities the successful applicant will have them “collaborate with Halo Infinite’s Head of Creative as well as other leads to create highly innovative and engaging, serial narrative content for Halo Infinite’s free-to-play."
In other words it sounds like 343i is working on adding some plot to Halo infinite’s multiplayer mode. Rather than just have it as a bunch of super-soldiers dealing out some damage because they can.
If this sounds familiar, it’s because this concept of adding story to multiplayer is not a wholly original idea. Games like Call of Duty Warzone include some narrative content each season, while Halo 4 offered a fully-fledged multiplayer campaign with Spartan Ops.
On top of this the multiplayer modes in Halo games have tried to maintain some sort of canonical relevance since Halo 4. In Halo 4 and Halo 5, you took on the role of a Spartan training on the UNSC Infinity’s holodeck. Halo Infinite’s multiplayer already has some basic narrative relevance as well.
You’re put in the shoes of a Spartan rookie who just landed on a specialized off-the-grid training facility. There’s also an introductory cutscene, explaining the backstory of your commander Spartan Agryna, plus ‘The Academy’ which throws a little more contextual plot into the mix.
It’s not clear what these narrative flourishes will involve beyond what we can see in the job listing. That specifies there will be “seasonal story content [that] leverages existing Halo lore and adds exciting new chapters to the larger Halo story.”
While I’ve always held out hope for more Spartan Ops, that mode didn’t last more than a single season. If I were to guess, I’d assume that any additional plot added to Halo Infinite’s multiplayer will be more akin to what we’ve seen already — short bursts of plot that are otherwise inconsequential to the larger multiplayer experience.
Whether it will tie into the main campaign or not isn’t clear. Hough considering the split between Halo Infinite’s solo and multiplayer modes, the latter of which is free-to-play, we shouldn’t expect a huge amount of crossover.
343i is also hiring a ‘monetization designer (opens in new tab)’, tasked with developing and analyzing the existing monetization systems in Halo Infinite. Systems that have proven very unpopular with some very vocal groups of players.
In any case, both these listings show 343i is serious about the longevity of Halo Infinite’s multiplayer. Which makes sense, given the further transition to the live service model. But only time will tell what is going to happen next.