Here's why Halo Infinite's campaign wasn't at Gamescom

Master Chief
(Image credit: Microsoft)

Series veteran and Halo Infinite lead writer Joseph Staten has explained the conspicuous absence of the game's campaign details from Microsoft's Gamescom showcase, explaining that the team is currently in "shutdown mode."

Despite debuting a flashy new multiplayer cinematic and some fancy themed gamepads and consoles, Halo Infinite's singleplayer was a no-show during this week's stream. Coupled with the news that co-op and Forge won't be in the game at launch, there's some concern that Infinite is coming in dangerously hot.

According to Staten's closer on the Halo Infinite blog, this radio silence is due to the development team being in "shutdown mode"—effectively, blocking out all outside noise to focus on critical bug fixes and ensuring the game is optimised across a range of PC and console hardware.

"If you’ll forgive a bit of aviation-geekery, the entirety of the team is essentially in a 'sterile cockpit,' which is to say: we’re at a critical phase in the flight that is Halo Infinite, so it’s extremely important to avoid distractions and stay focused on mission-critical tasks only. 

"For Campaign, that means putting maximum effort into ensuring the wide-open, adventure-filled experience you’ll all get to play on December 8th is a great as it can possibly be. And gameplay demos and trailers not only take a huge amount of effort to do well, they also take cycles away from bugs and other shutdown tasks."

Staten does explain that he's been actively playing through the Halo Infinite campaign, and unsurprisingly says it's "super fun to play". And there are other reasons to be cheerful—after a weekend with the game's technical test, I'm convinced Halo Infinite's multiplayer might be quite special indeed. But that December 8 release date is closing in fast.

Natalie Clayton
Features Producer

20 years ago, Nat played Jet Set Radio Future for the first time, and she's not stopped thinking about games since. Joining PC Gamer in 2020, she comes from three years of freelance reporting at Rock Paper Shotgun, Waypoint, VG247 and more. Embedded in the European indie scene and a part-time game developer herself, Nat is always looking for a new curiosity to scream about—whether it's the next best indie darling, or simply someone modding a Scotmid into Black Mesa. She also unofficially appears in Apex Legends under the pseudonym Horizon.