Halo community manager says battle royale rumor is 'unfounded'

Halo Infinite
(Image credit: Xbox Game Studios)

A rumor resurfaced yesterday claiming that, despite 343 Industries' professed lack of interest, Halo Infinite (opens in new tab) will in fact get a battle royale mode, free for all players, in 2021. The tweet that got the ball rolling was actually posted in October, and was based on a Reddit post (opens in new tab), also from October, saying that "343 has wanted to make this BR unlike any to come before and there are some BIG and I mean BIG plans for this."

The tweet has since been deleted (here's the cached version (opens in new tab) if you want to see it for yourself), but 343 Industries has responded nonetheless: Halo community manager Brian Jarrard took to Twitter to call the claim "unfounded."

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It's not exactly a straight-up denial, and in fact implies that maybe there's something to it—at the very least, that there's more going on than 343 has shared so far. The rumor could be "unfounded" but still accurate: Halo would certainly be a good fit for a battle royale, after all, and it's been more than two years since lead writer Jeff Easterling said, "The only 'BR' we're really interested in is 'Battle Rifle'."

Halo Infinite hasn't had the smoothest ride recently: It was delayed to 2021 (opens in new tab) in August, studio director Chris Lee moved off the project (opens in new tab) a couple months later, and in November 343 Industries said it wasn't planning on having anything to show (opens in new tab) at the upcoming Game Awards. Jarrard addressed fan frustration in a series of later tweets, saying that he can "understand and appreciate (opens in new tab) the passion" the Halo community has, as well as "the frustration when things don’t go the way you want or it feels like you’re somehow being wronged or not heard."

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There's currently no sign of a more precise release window for Halo Infinite than 2021, and it's possible that could be pushed all the way into November of next year, to tie in with the 20th anniversary of Halo: Combat Evolved. We'll hopefully start to get a clearer picture soon though, as the studio said in a recent blog post (opens in new tab) that it "plans to be much more communicative in the coming months."

Andy Chalk

Andy has been gaming on PCs from the very beginning, starting as a youngster with text adventures and primitive action games on a cassette-based TRS80. From there he graduated to the glory days of Sierra Online adventures and Microprose sims, ran a local BBS, learned how to build PCs, and developed a longstanding love of RPGs, immersive sims, and shooters. He began writing videogame news in 2007 for The Escapist and somehow managed to avoid getting fired until 2014, when he joined the storied ranks of PC Gamer. He covers all aspects of the industry, from new game announcements and patch notes to legal disputes, Twitch beefs, esports, and Henry Cavill. Lots of Henry Cavill.