You might not be aware, but there's this little game called Halo Infinite launching this week on Wednesday, December 8th, and the review embargo dropped earlier this morning. We've already given our verdict on the latest entry in the series, scoring it a 9/10 and calling it "a big step forward for the franchise", but what about the rest of the critics?

Here are some of the reviews we've come across so far:

Pure Xbox (9/10)

"Halo Infinite feels like a big step forward for the franchise, a slick shift into the open world arena that manages to strike a fine balance between the traditional narrative-driven Halo of old and all-new levels of freedom and emergent gameplay."

Windows Central (5/5)

"While 343 industries has struggled to steer Halo in the right direction ever since the launch of Halo 4 in 2012, the studio has finally come into its own with Halo Infinite. The game successfully honors Halo's narrative, gameplay, and presentation legacies while also incorporating fresh ideas into the experience that breathe new life into the 20-year-old franchise."

GamesBeat (5/5)

"The takeaway is that 343 Industries has updated and modernized a familiar formula without abandoning that core Halo feeling. In other words, everything in this package is Halo-ass Halo."

Game Informer (9.25/10)

"Whether you want a big, mysterious sci-fi adventure or a chance to engage with some intense PvP, Halo Infinite nails the shots where it counts and heralds a new era for one of gaming’s most recognizable mainstays."

GamesRadar (4.5/5)

"Against impossible odds, Halo Infinite is both a familiar celebration of two decades of adventures with Master Chief and an expansive foundation for future evolution. 343 has siphoned the spirit of Combat Evolved and modernized it, delivering the best Halo campaign in quite some time in the process."

Destructoid (9/10)

"If I had one piece of advice for people on the fence with Halo Infinite, it would be to not worry about the open world and embrace how it’s handled here. I was incredibly worried at first that 343 wouldn’t be able to resist the siren’s song of other major publishers, but the restraint here is appreciated."

GameSpot (9/10)

"Certain story elements are on the weaker side and the amazing Grappleshot makes the rest of Chief's equipment feel a bit lacking in comparison, but these are small shortcomings in what otherwise feels like the best Halo campaign in years and an excellent evolution of what Halo can be."

IGN (9/10)

"Halo Infinite's single-player campaign is exactly what this series needed. It brings out the best in Master Chief's unique and satisfying combat style while leveraging old ideas to create memorable new moments. Its story falls short for both new and veteran players, but it was worth the six-year wait."

EGM (4/5)

"At times, as with the campaign’s story, it can feel like developer 343 Industries is weighed down by Master Chief’s Mjolnir armor. But Infinite’s bolder design choices, like its open-world environment and Grappleshot, make it feel exciting and new."

Video Games Chronicle (4/5)

"Halo Infinite's move to a more open-world structure feels like a new beginning for the series, with nostalgic nods and fresh introductions combining to great effect. Both the campaign and multiplayer have room for improvement, but the core experience is strong."

PC Gamer (78/100)

"It's painfully easy to imagine a world where Infinite could have easily been one of my favourite entries to date. But between an open world that feels largely redundant and a story that can't shed the series' baggage, Halo Infinite's campaign falls just shy of being great Halo."

Tom's Guide (3.5/5)

"It’s clear that 343 Industries has learned a lot from the mistakes of Halo 4 and Halo 5, and has used that experience to make Halo Infinite a better game. While still imperfect, Halo Infinite manages to blend all the elements that people love about Halo into something new and original."

Halo Infinite is off to a fantastic start, then, currently boasting an impressive 87 rating on Metacritic based on 42 reviews (with many more undoubtedly set to alter that rating over the next few hours). It's faring a little less impressively on PC, with an 80 rating based on 9 reviews at the time of writing. On Series X though, it looks like the game will settle somewhere around the 85-90 mark when all is said and done, which is another fantastic result for Xbox Game Studios!

Hyped for the release of Halo Infinite this Wednesday? Let us know down in the comments below.