It's good news and bad news for fans of Halo Online, the free-to-play shooter that's only available in Russia, and the hacks that enable it to be played elsewhere. The group behind Eldewrito (the component of the Eldorito mod that allows it to go online outside of Russia) recently announced the release of the 0.5 version of the mod, which includes all the new maps included in the latest official release of Halo Online. But they also said that it will be the last major release of the mod created by the original team.
“We have decided to focus our collective efforts on an entirely new project called Anvil Online, which is a mod for Halo Online that has different design goals from ElDewrito. We will do our best to keep you updated on our progress on this project. We will create another post later with more details on the project,” the Eldewrito dev team wrote on Reddit. “We welcome the community to continue our efforts in the meantime, while we work hard to bring you the best experience that we possibly can.”
The new release adds six new maps, all from Halo 3—High Ground, Last Resort, Narrows, Standoff, The Pit, and Sandtrap—plus IP banning and increased audio channels, from 64 to 1024.
In a bit of an ironic twist, while Eldewrito continues to operate, the official Halo Online was reportedly taken offline in December. A translated message posted in the same thread said the shutdown is temporary, but it also includes an offer of refunds for in-game purchases, suggesting that it could be some time before it returns.