343 Studios is bringing a custom game browser to Halo: The Master Chief Collection, with the feature to begin testing as soon as next week as part of the game's next public flight.
Flights, in 343 terminology, are public beta events for testing new features. Over the past year, they've let Halo Insiders access limited builds of the next entry to be added to PC. With the porting process now finished, the developer has become a little more daring in its additions.
As per 343's latest blog post, the MCC's next flight may start as soon as next Thursday, February 18. While there are plenty of smaller features to celebrate (double key-binds, finally!), the flight is also introducing a long-overdue custom game browser to the Halo collection.
Bungie may have popularising matchmaking with Halo 2 back in 2004, but the series' slower sandbox format feels more at home in the less formalised space of custom games. The MCC has long been missing a way to instantly jump into a 24/7 game of CTF on Blood Gulch, after all. Hopefully, a server browser is also one more step towards the proper mod support the game has been screaming for since launch.
The flight will also trial a brand new map for Halo 3, arguably the first it's received since Bungie stopped dropping map packs back in 2010. Arguably, because the new map is nicked from Halo Online—a PC port of Halo 3 that only saw a limited release in Russia. 343 started pulling from that well with the MCC's latest season with some truly garish armour designs.
343 is also testing some extra audio and view model customisation options, while console players are getting proper mouse and keyboard support. You'll need to be a Halo Insider to be eligible for testing, though public flights have historically arrived around 2-6 weeks before the updates go live. Expect to hop into some truly bonkers custom games within a month or so.