Halo Infinite commits unspeakable crime, launches without a Slayer-only playlist

halo infinite multiplayer
(Image credit: 343 Industries)

The Halo Infinite multiplayer beta is live and all I want to do is play Slayer. The classic deathmatch mode is one of several different modes available in the game, but right now, you can only play it randomly.

All three of the game's competitive game types—Quick Play, Big Team Battle, and Ranked Arena—feature a playlist of modes that are randomly selected during matchmaking. You can't, however, choose to only play one specific mode as you have in past Halo games. That means Slayer fans have to put up with playing objective-based modes like Capture the Flag, Oddball, and Strongholds.

You can't make a custom Slayer game that random players can join either, those are currently invite-only. For now, you have to cross your fingers for a good game mode every time you queue up for Halo, which is a bummer as someone that'd rather kick back with deathmatch than worry about flags.

Some have speculated 343 has limited Halo Infinite to a single mixed playlist to force players to test out each mode (It's a beta, after all). It's possible that when Halo fully launches with its campaign on December 8, we'll also get a more traditional mode select option. For now, Infinite's matchmaking resembles Overwatch with its randomly selected maps and modes. But while Overwatch players are used to not having a say in what mode they're playing, Halo fans definitely are not.

Halo Infinite beta modes playlist

(Image credit: Future)

"I honestly feel like the lack of [an] option to choose between Slayer and Objective is unacceptable," Reddit user probably_is_fhqwgads wrote in a thread about beta. Many people on the Halo subreddit and social media are unhappy with the number of objective-based modes in the playlist, citing a lack of understanding for how they work to be the reason they're not as fun.

"This is my #1 issue right now," Reddit user xRaen added. "All else can be forgiven, but I don't have any fun with CTF. I just want to shoot dudes."

The lack of Slayer-only play is a small complaint in my eyes, given that we were greeted with the surprise early launch of Halo Infinite multiplayer this morning. The first season of the free-to-play game is available now with 10 maps, a battle pass, and a whole assortment of unlockable armor pieces and paintjobs for your Spartan. Clearly, the lack of mode choice isn't stopping the over 200,000 people playing it on Steam and the 100,000 people watching it on Twitch.

Our own Natalie Clayton called the multiplayer "a satisfying arena shooter" that has "the potential to be the best Halo since 3" when we played the technical test a few months ago.

Associate Editor

Tyler has covered games, games culture, and hardware for over a decade before joining PC Gamer as Associate Editor. He's done in-depth reporting on communities and games as well as criticism for sites like Polygon, Wired, and Waypoint. He's interested in the weird and the fascinating when it comes to games, spending time probing for stories and talking to the people involved. Tyler loves sinking into games like Final Fantasy 14, Overwatch, and Dark Souls to see what makes them tick and pluck out the parts worth talking about. His goal is to talk about games the way they are: broken, beautiful, and bizarre.