In a recent interview with IGN, the Head of 343 Industries Bonnie Ross shared some interesting bits of information regarding the development of Halo Infinite.
As we already know, Halo Infinite is being developed on a brand new game engine. The new engine, known as the Slipspace Engine, is being developed in-house by 343 Industries and will replace the original Halo Engine made by Bungie for Halo: Combat Evolved. Whilst the Halo engine has been heavily modified over the years, developers at 343 have been complaining for some time now that it has become increasingly restrictive.
“The Halo engine is a very technical, engineering-focused engine. It’s super hard for creatives to work in. It’s super hard for a lot of creatives to work in at one time,” Ross said when questioned by IGN about the change.
“We promised the team that we would do the work on the tools and pipeline for Halo 5 so it wasn’t such a challenging environment to develop on. Best-laid plans … we didn’t do that. The team, rightfully so, called us on it.”
So apparently this move has been on the cards for quite some time now. And as much as the Halo engine has served the franchise exceedingly well, I think it’s reasonable to say that as hardware has advanced the engine needs to change too. In order to give the developers at 343 the tools they need to make the most of the creative power offered by modern consoles, a brand new purpose-built game engine was required.
Ross also revealed that fans can expect to hear more about Halo Infinite at this year’s E3, courtesy of game director Chris Lee. The game is being marketed as a “Spiritual Reboot” for the franchise – a new entry which will continue to evolve the Halo brand whilst also respecting its past. Halo Infinite aims to honour the existing lore of the Halo Universe without compromise and preserve the legacy left behind by Bungie, an approach that the community has greeted with much praise and approval thus far.
No release window has yet been given for Halo Infinite, and all the information we do have indicates that we won’t get to play it for quite a while. However a tweet this week from 343’s Frank O’Connor has assured fans that when it eventually does launch, Halo Infinite will be available for Xbox One and appropriately spec’d PCs – dispelling rumours that the game would skip current gen and become a launch title for Microsoft’s next console.