Turns out the Halo Infinite co-op splitscreen for the campaign was well on its way to being complete, but 343 Industries has explained that getting the feature over the line for the FPS game just wasn’t possible. The multiplayer game already ‘stumbled’ at launch according to Microsoft, but now we have a candid answer concerning the Halo Infinite couch co-op as well.
This comes from an interview with 343 Industries Forge lead designer Michael Shore and head of live service Sean Baron, as they acknowledge and respond to the Halo Infinite co-op splitscreen cancellation and the glitch that players found giving them a way into split screen co-op anyway.
“So right now we are committed to supporting the live service,” says Baron. “Making sure that the quality of this release is high and good and that we land that. We of course were working on it for many, many months, years, on campaign couch co-op, and there’s a lot of challenges there from a technical perspective and what people were able to glitch into is probably about 80% [of Halo Infinite campaign couch co-op].
“But the amount of work for us to get from 80% quality to 100% quality is significant, and the amount of effort that would take right now is not something that we can commit to. I’m not even sure how long it would take, to be honest.”
The clip on Halo Infinite co-op splitscreen, from the original interview with IGN, was uploaded by Halo YouTuber Mint Blitz.
As one of the many players upset by the Halo Infinite couch co-op news, I very much appreciate a candid answer on the issue, even if it is after a fair amount of time. You’ll also notice how Baron, understandably, doesn’t commit to saying couch co-op will come back to Halo Infinite. There’s seemingly potential if 343 find the time and resources, but there are so many other plans for Infinite that I’m not holding my breath.
The fact that Halo Infinite co-op splitscreen was around 80% done might come across as a surprise, but it’s not atypical for the last leg of development on something like this to be the most important part. Baron even adds in the clip that it would need to go through immense testing on all platforms to make sure it worked properly, so don’t forget to factor that in.
Halo Infinite’s co-op splitscreen getting the axe was announced by Halo Infinite head of creative Joseph Staten in a developer update. “We have had to make the difficult decision not to ship campaign split-screen co-op,” Staten said. For many, Halo Infinite splitscreen is a core part of the experience, which is why this news stung particularly badly at the time.
That said, 343 has clearly been on a shift in trajectory for Halo Infinite in recent months and the additions of Forge, a free battle pass (with some fans calling it ‘padding‘), online campaign co-op and more show that off.
If you want some more Halo Infinite news, 343 recently addressed fans on adding campaign AI into Forge so they can make Firefight themselves, and Halo Infinite’s new multiplayer mode from Certain Affinity is also going to be “something big,” according to the team.