343 Industries has confirmed that Master Chief's latest adventure Halo Infinite now won't see the light of day until the later half of 2021.
In an Inside Infinite update posted to Halo Waypoint, the game's latest creative director Joseph Staten revealed the new launch window, and mentioned how he joined right after July's divisive campaign demo was shown off to the world. Following the feedback, the team went into discussions that he says "boiled down to one fundamental truth: we needed more time to do things right. That included pushing hard in the Fall, giving the team time to recharge over the Holidays, and then coming back in January to finish the game at a healthy pace."
The update then handed over to members of 343 Industries art and graphics teams, detailing the visual improvements that have been worked into the game since that demo. Director of Art Management Neill Harrison said: "Much of the feedback we heard from the community aligned with our own views and work we were already committed to doing around things like indirect lighting, material response, foliage and tree rendering, clouds, level-of-detail transitions, and character fidelity. Still, the feedback was humbling, and it also pushed us to look at additional opportunities for improvement."
Meanwhile Ani Shastry, Development Manager for the Graphics team claimed that the team had also been making good progress on "better quality of global illumination, ambient occlusion, shadows, volumetric lighting, sky, and atmosphere" as well as "addressed issues with our GPU-driven rendering and texture streaming solution that should mitigate the LOD popping and texture quality issues that were prevalent in the July demo."
The extensive update also covered improvements on the game's multiplayer options that will include the previously announced free-to-play multiplayer portion, promising huge improvements in armour customisation, deeper personalisation and a "better structured player rewards system" in Halo Infinite.
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There's a lot of stuff in the post, so it's well worth a read of the entire update over here. 343 Industries also promise to share far more information on the progress of the game going forward, so expect to hear a lot more on the game over the next few months ahead of the launch of Halo Infinite on Xbox Series X|S, Xbox One and PC in Fall 2021.