Earlier this week, 343 Industries dropped an absolute bombshell when it announced Halo Infinite would be delayed until 2021 "to ensure the team has adequate time to deliver a Halo game experience" that meets its vision.
Since then, 343 founder Bonnie Ross has apologised for disappointing many fans while at the same time thanking them for their support and understanding. Now, the head of Xbox Phil Spencer has spoken for the first time about the delay on Gary Whitta's Animal Crossing talk show - admitting it's a bummer.
"Let me start just by recognising the fans and the fact that it is a bummer... I know it's disappointing to people, it's disappointing to us - we were looking forward to the alignment of Halo and the launch of Series X as a, you know, a really kind of seminal moment almost for Xbox - thinking back to the original Xbox with Halo: CE"
"In the end, you know, I have to make the right decision for the game, for the team and for the overall platform and I think the strength of the Halo franchise... it's a hard decision"
"We're disappointed, we know it was something people were looking forward to this year, but we're also incredibly committed to deliver a great game and I think that's the most important thing."
As stated, it's all about delivering a "great game" at the end of the day. Phil reinforced this with the following comment:
"I make the call...like I said, with hopefully the best intent in the long run for our fans and our platform."
There was even a point where team Xbox considered releasing the game in individual sections, but it didn't feel right:
“We made the decision late last week - and I say we, Bonnie Ross who runs 343, Matt Booty who runs our first party studios organisation and myself, and they came with some options, the things that we could do, maybe parts of the game we could ship on given dates, and it just didn't feel to all of us like the Halo release that we would want.”
Spencer added how he didn't like to set up expectations and then not deliver and also reiterated how the delay was the right decision in the long run:
“I’ll apologise to the fans, because I never like to set up expectations and then not hit them, but I also believe that we’re making the right decision in the long run, for both Xbox and Halo and our customers.”
"when we know, we know - let's make the decision, let's put it out so we're talking to our fans directly, be as transparent as we can be. It'll be not our favourite day, but we'll get through it - I've had bad days before - and move through it and keep working on the things that we love doing, which is building video games and delighting fans."
How are you feeling about the Halo delay a few days later? Do you think the game will be better off? Share your thoughts down below.
[source twitch.tv, via stevivor.com]
It’s actually quite an encouraging sign regarding the long term future of Xbox. Not an easy decision but even if it takes another 12 months, a Christmas 2021 release for an absolutely top quality Halo game is far better than a Christmas 2020 release of something substandard or even unfinished. That would stick dirt to both the Halo and Xbox brands.
Where does the word 'bummer' sit in today's woke world? I always assumed it came from the feeling of dejection one could possibly feel having just received a non-consensual visitor via the back passage.
On the delay... On the one hand, it reinforces my point a week or two ago about not pimping your ** until she's got her makeup on. Why did they feel a need to pimp HI in July if it wasn't ready?
But yes, it is encouraging to see them take the hit and hopefully release a finished game, rather than rush out something not ready.
Didn’t he already stated earlier this year that Series X would still launch even if Halo Infinite wasn’t ready by holiday?
It’s a great decision, just release it with Series X optimisations complete with Ray Tracing next year. I really hoped for the second time a Xbox launches with Halo but juggernaut titles like Cyberpunk (which itself will take months to complete all the story branches) and AC Valhalla will keep us busy for the meantime destroying the competition in Digitalfoundry reviews with ultra performance of Series X like usual. It’s actually beneficial for Halo if it releases in a clean time period without other heavyweight titles around to cut some attention.
I'm honestly not too bothered about it anymore. I was at first, believe me. I was looking forward to playing Halo later this year than any other game. But I'm treating games like Cyberpunk and Watch Dogs: Legion as next-gen titles, and will be playing them when I pick up the Series X at launch. Can't wait!
It was the right move. It's an intelligent decision.
Their console is ready. This game is not.
So they had to. Halo is too strong of a franchise, they have to deliver it properly.
They are doing the right thing here, most of today’s AAA best games get delayed.
Look at even Sony Studios games always delayed and most of them are critically acclaimed.
The pressure now is when it is released it will have to be up there with best of the very best games, anything else will be a disappointment.
My expectations are very high now for Halo Infinite and I hope it’s a stunner.
Thats a good read. Overall it's a good decision to delay the game. It will be better as a result.
Hopefully Microsoft have some plan to fill the Halo hole at launch now. Even Flight Simulator and Gears Tactics at launch would do... Just something needs to plug that gap.
It's the correct decision, obviously a disappointment, but it had to be done...
Expectations now rise once again, the game will have to deliver, which I'm sure given the added development time, it will..
Microsoft now needs to act positive and ensure they counter this unfortunate own goal building upto the Series X launch...
I'm sure they have something up their sleeve?? 🤔
Free series x for all that have game pass.
Maybe they might be even more competitive on price of the series x, though most release windows for next generation do sell out.
It's bad for the launch of the console, but great news for the game.
You could tell by the gameplay reveal that it was needed more time in the oven.
The only positive is that Sony only has a short Spiderman spinoff as a launch title, so it's not all bad. They just need to make sure they undercut them on price and push the Game Pass.
@Dezzy70 That's an option, but as you say most avid Xbox fans will buy the system at launch regardless, so Microsoft could be leaving money on the table by doing this... Perhaps some additional advertising after the launch say in the Jan - March quarter where sales could dip after the launch frenzy would help...
My day one Xbox one x stopped working yesterday.
Good news Game UK found some new stock from some where so my new gears of war special edition Xbox one x being delivered in about one hour.
Now there’s a bit of luck.
@Dezzy70 Good news then, makes me a tad worried as I have a Xbox One X to hear others going wrong... (I've had mine under 6 months currently.) I don't normally like Limited Edition Consoles but the Gears One X really looks great....
Have not heard of many of them going wrong. Very well built console, quiet and cool as well.
If it needed to be delayed it needed it, but the pandemic started in March so if they knew it was affecting them, and they wouldn’t be ready, surely they would have know before August so they should not have hyped it and held a gameplay or several minutes in the July event, instead they should have announced its delay there.
@Dezzy70 They seem to be well built generally, a solid piece of kit.. Congratulations on getting a new one, I can see that becoming nearly impossible in the coming months...
Well I thought that was it, but all of sudden Game UK had their own stock of several Xbox one x models £349.99
Just checked all models now sold out.
Proves there is still a good market for the Xbox one x, Microsoft’s best console so far.
In late july it was all on track, in mid august it gets delayed, I wonder what happend in these few weeks.
Maybe someone put down their rose colored glasses?
IMO it was the right decision for the game and franchise so at least they made the right but tough decision.
I also hope they seriously review it's progress because I really question 343 at this point.
In Phil I trust.
Obviously, it was the right decision to delay the game. Release it when it’s ready. There is no reason 343 should be doing “crunch” or risking their health during covid-19 to appease impatient gamers.
@gcunit Well, "thanks" ever so much for putting that picture in my head.
Definitely the best decision that could have been made. I am much more relieved about the state of the game and how it will look down the line. I also feel like Phil Spencer is making a lot of good decisions for the Xbox brand down the road, which gives me confidence in the future.
Just to finish the story.
New Gears edition Xbox one x arrived, all set up again and running well.
@gcunit ROFL.....I'm not sure how you managed to get that image in your head of "bummer" as your first thought..... Nor how you followed up a "woke" inquiry with "pimping", unironically.
FWIW, "bummer" AFAIK started as California surfer-dude talk sometime in the 60s-80's originating from when you fall off the board and slam your bum onto the board or the water on the wave, which is going to leave you pretty red and sore.... You fell off....you just got a "bummer".... So other things that leave your bum swollen and sore are "total bummers, dude."
I’m glad to see Microsoft isn’t just pushing this out to make a quick buck and ruin 343’s reputation further. I hope they make good use of the extra time and really spruce those visuals up. I wasn’t that impressed by what I saw visually, but did like what I saw gameplay wise.
I was looking forward to playing Halo at launch, But the game needed more time in the oven and I'm ok with that.. I'll still be getting a Series X day 1..
@Dezzy70 Great news, glad it's arrived 😀
@NEStalgia I went to an all-boys school, so that kinda talk was fairly standard. Wiktionary.org and the Urban Dictionary both include 'homosexual male' as one meaning (among others) for the word bummer. So if a bummer bums you, and you didn't want to be bummed, then the experience might have been a bit of a bummer. That was my logic.
And I was intrigued that a public figure would use the word, given the above connotation and the potential for grief nowadays from people claiming it to be a derogatory word, but it doesn't bother me. Anything goes in my world.
@gcunit Haha, leave it to British colloquial slang.... Though I can see the confusion as nobody here uses the word "bum" to mean posterior at all. Usually it means a delinquent, deadbeat, homeless person (especially if alcoholic)....but also had a meaning as one who who pretty much always lives at the beach. And most are aware of the British meaning for posterior, but don't use it in that contest regularly. The "beach bum" terminology has largely vanished, though. I don't think I want to know how the British interpretation of "beach bum" might read. So the fact that "gnarly" surfer dudes used the already British slang to "properly" use the word "bum" to begin with was itself an usual occurrence.
Like "cool" and "sucks" (which has left its sexual connotation behind as it entered common parlance) it's one of those words that transcended it's hippie-ish origins and became common expression even among 60+ old guys in expensive suits. It's a more polite and professional-casual way of saying "well that's s***y. Although, then we renew our posterior references.
He should tattoo the next date onto his arm like MS did for Halo 2 😂
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