Halo is a long and storied franchise for Xbox gamers (and PC players too). The first-person shooter hit the scene in 2001 and legitimized Microsoft's new console, changing the way a majority of players interacted with games. Since that time, the series has remained a favorite for shooter fans and online multiplayer fanatics. With a new entry in the franchise on the way, then, we can't help but wonder what will come next.
Halo Infinite will definitely be a flex by Microsoft to bring back old 360 players who jumped to Sony over the next generation, and we think it could — if they fix a few things. With that in mind, there's a lot we'd like to see stay, too, so we're going to look at both sides of the argument.
10 Keep: Awesome Online
Despite fans' gripes about some of 343's decisions with Halo's campaign, one thing everyone agrees with is how consistently amazing the online can be. With a massive, active community, players rarely have to wait to hop into a game, and the amount of choice regarding loadout, playstyle, maps, and match types is almost overwhelming in the best kind of way. Not only that, but it's a game that's been consistently supported, giving players reasons to come back.
We love to jump into a game or two of Oddball, which is a super fun pseudo-asymmetric game mode that is equal parts intense and riotous. While this mode didn't launch with Halo 5, 343 made sure to bring it back in an update — let's just hope there's no wait when Infinite launches.
9 Change: Mission Variety
Halo has always been about shooting everything in sight and making the biggest explosions possible. We love it. Yet, sometimes, we yearn for more. Sure, there are a few driving segments here and there, but we'd love to see more stealth — which Halo 2 attempted, sort of — or something to give us variety.
It's time to see Halo's campaign evolve like its multiplayer, to keep fans engaged in its story. There's only so much a straight-up shooter can do to keep players interested.
8 Keep: Forge Mode
Before there was Super Mario Maker, there was Forge. It gave players the ability to edit maps and really get creative. It got so popular, in fact, that Bungie ended up creating maps with this mode in mind for Halo 3 players.
Since then, it's become a cornerstone of the Halo experience, and we hope 343 can continue to make it unique. Hopefully, we can see it expand a little more, but we won't get too greedy here: we're just happy it exists.
7 Change: Vehicle Variety
We're not saying Halo's vehicular offerings are bad, rather, they feel played out. As a sci-fi war franchise, there really is the possibility to drive almost anything, yet, we're stuck with a handful of vehicle types — many of which operate in a similar manner.
There just needs to be more than the handful on-offer. Thankfully, 343 has remedied that by offering variants on many vehicle-types, making this problem feel like less of an issue, but we'd love to get our hands on as many cars, trucks, tanks, planes and alien motors as possible.
6 Keep: Weapon Weight
One thing that really sets Halo apart from other shooters is its unique weaponry. Yet, even with many newly-imagined guns, developers have found ways to make players feel like their shot will hurt. This is something that dates back to the original title from 2001, but it's a nice touch that we appreciate.
Sure, other titles have managed to do something similar as well, but 343 has kept that heavy feeling of firing a weapon. Nothing really feels quite as fun as shooting something in Halo.
5 Change: Warthog Control
This might be sacrilegious, but controlling a car with two thumbsticks is wrong. We get it creates a full-on chaotic feeling when it comes to driving, but Microsoft put a lot of money into their controller's sensitive triggers, and it's about time we used them to drive a gosh-darn vehicle.
Instead of sloppy drifting, players can really feel in control this way, and it could make vehicular levels feel more satisfying. We're not saying it's bad, it was a good run, but it's time driving feels right in Halo.
4 Keep: Expansive Levels
One thing Halo is known for is its gigantic non-linear level design. While the campaign doesn't really follow that idea, there's something fun about exploring the battle arenas. Whether we're searching for skulls, or just messing around with the game's physics, it's a blast.
There are very few narrow hallways, and it makes each firefight feel like an epic battle. We're hoping 343 can expand on this even more, giving players a living, breathing world to explore, but if that's too much to ask, we'll take even bigger levels.
3 Change: Recent Story Campaign
Look, we're not going to sit here and pretend that Halo 5 had a bad story, we're just going to say that fans generally weren't too thrilled with it. We hope 343 was taking notes because fans were mad at the lack of character development, and how it pretty much made Halo 4 seem like a waste of time.
The studio has since come out and said they realize a lack of Master Chief was a big problem, so there is hope going forward. Still, it's disappointing that, following a fantastic original trilogy, Halo fans have been left with relatively unsatisfying plots.
2 Keep: Cortana
Look, we know fans got emotional when we thought she died, but Cortana is almost as integral to Halo as Master Chief himself. The dynamic between our protagonists is a real thing players can get attached to.
Her "death" in Halo 4 was a legitimately touching and personal moment in a series not exactly known for such a thing, but since she came back for Halo 5, we don't think it would be a good idea to constantly use her as a go-to to make the story feel deep. Let's keep her around for a while.
1 Change: Prometheans
Change is difficult, we get that, but there's something about Prometheans that fans have never really been a fan of since they took to the forefront of Halo lore in the fourth game. Sure, we can chalk up the problems to fans just thinking "it's because they're not the Covenant" and call it a day, but it feels like 343 has not done enough to make fans really sink their teeth in this alien race.
Considering they go as far back as the original game (with a casual mention), we think there could be something to save what is considered the most loyal servants of the forerunners, but we're not exactly sure where to start. From a narrative perspective, it wouldn't make sense to write them off completely, but some of the biggest complaints of the last two games stem from these characters, so something's got to give eventually.