While I might not agree with all its additions (opens in new tab), 343 Industries has done a hell of a job keeping Halo: The Master Chief Collection active with new maps, modes and cosmetics, arriving in massive seasonal drops roughly every 3 months. But with Halo Infinite coming in hot (opens in new tab) this winter, 343 suddenly finds itself with two live-service Halo games—and understandably, it sounds like work on the legacy bundle will be slowing down.
In its September dev update (opens in new tab), publishing team lead producer Michael Fahrny shared the team's stance on where The MCC stands in the run-up to Halo Infinite. To make room for the new game, the upcoming Season 8 Update (opens in new tab) will be the MCC's last patch this year. But once Infinite is settled in, Fahrny notes that it becomes harder to justify splitting resources between two ongoing Halos.
"Starting next year, we’re targeting pivoting away from our current seasonal model and cadence to instead focus on smaller MCC updates that can land when they’re ready based on development status and studio roadmap alignment. These updates will continue to be free and will include the unreleased features and content from this year—as well as a continued effort to improve stability and tackle legacy fixes where possible. We still have a lot of goodness to deliver in 2022."
That said, The MCC isn't being left behind entirely. Fahrny explains that the team still has a lot it wants to do with the collection, they just won't arrive in massive seasonal drops. There'll also be a more detailed post explaining what happens with seasonal points, challenges and the in-game exchange in the near future.
On the upside, mod support for the MCC is still very much on track. Following the release of mod tools for the first game , Halo 2 and 3 (the latter, specifically, having never before had mod support) are now set to get their own—though 343 isn't quite ready to say when.
"We’re still very early in the MCC modding days and eager to continue evolving capabilities while seeing all the unique experiences the community brings to life. It’s been awesome watching the mod community organize and showcase their work and we can’t wait to see what they do with upcoming never-before-released tool sets."
On some level, I welcome the end of larger MCC updates. There's a world where 343 keeps adding increasingly bizarre armour sets to the point where the game is practically unrecognisable—and while we're stuck with Skeletor Spartans, it's nice to know that The MCC will largely remain as it is, with updates focussing on QoL fixes and modding tools. It just remains to be seen whether the drop in focus leads to the Halo community leaving The MCC behind for fresher pastures.