Joseph Staten, head of creative at 343 Industries, has explained why fans didn’t see any Halo Infinite campaign gameplay during the game’s presence at Gamescom Opening Night Live yesterday, which instead featured a trailer for the first season of multiplayer content and a December release date announcement. The campaign omission was notable, since the public has not seen single-player gameplay footage since Halo Infinite’s July 2020 demonstration, but there’s a good reason for its absence.
Staten addressed concerned fans in a new Halo Waypoint post, which also recaps the game’s recent multiplayer preview event. He explained that Halo Infinite developers at 343 are in “shutdown mode,” a time in development where the team has shifted to prioritize important bug fixes. With most of the single-player mode work completed, this time is being used to get Halo Infinite to a point of ideal quality on PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X | S. He calls the task “very challenging, even for a large and experienced team,” and as such, it requires the 343 team to hunker down and avoid distractions as launch inches closer.
“For Campaign, that means putting maximum effort into ensuring the wide-open, adventure-filled experience you’ll all get to play on December 8th is a great as it can possibly be,” Staten said. “And gameplay demos and trailers not only take a huge amount of effort to do well, they also take cycles away from bugs and other shutdown tasks.”
Staten went on to say that he is currently in the middle of performing a 100% playthrough of Halo Infinite’s campaign and is continually pleased with the small moments of environmental storytelling he discovers, whether it be a battle-torn Marine recon post or a seemingly abandoned outpost that is actually a site for ambush.
“No matter how many times I play, Halo Infinite remains, fundamentally, super fun to play—and we’re very eager to share all the fun with you through captured gameplay, trailers, and other content once we get this plane safely on the ground,” Staten said. “But for now, it’s focus-time in the cockpit as we stick the landing.”
Staten stated in a Halo Infinite development update video last week that fans will get more campaign gameplay footage before launch arrives. In the same update, 343 revealed that Halo Infinite will be shipping without its campaign co-op and Forge modes, which are set to arrive in future seasons.