Just as we predicted long ago, Halo Infinite will be monetized with cosmetic skins. Now 343i re-iterates that REQ packs and lootboxes won't be included, but doesn't offer specifics on microtransactions.
Halo Infinite will have microtransactions. Monetization is a staple to most of Microsoft's first-party games, especially those with live elements. This concept goes double for Halo Infinite, which has a free-to-play multiplayer mode. But how exactly will Infinite be monetized? There will be skins and ornaments--that we know for sure--and REQ packs are dead. Expect to see paid paintjobs, custom armor/weapon skins, and a lot more offered in a straightforward mTX storefront.
Although details are light, 343i does confirm random unlocks won't be a part of Infinite's "premium path." Anything up for sale won't affect the game in any way, so expect everything to be 100% cosmetic.
"Yes, being free-to-play does mean that there will be some premium cosmetics, but players will still obtain tons of customization content through things like playing campaign, challenges, skill, special events, legacy rewards (such as the Halo 5 SR 152 reward), the progression system, and more," Ryan Paradis, the design director for Infinite's life team, said in a recent update.
"We will always provide value for pure engagement and simply playing the game. We believe that providing value isn't exclusive to monetary transactions, it's also about making sure you're properly rewarded for the time you're investing into the game. Players that play for free will be able unlock items across a multitude of different customization types to allow them to represent themselves in-game."
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Here are a few major tenants that're guiding Halo Infinite's live team:
- Healthy engagement is paramount. We want everyone to play the game in a healthy manner that they enjoy. We're not trying to build a grind-machine that burns everyone out in an attempt to get more game time from them. Halo Infinite needs to be a place where we all look forward to spending time.
- We maintain a player-first focus. Think of all the games we've all played that have random rewards, ask people to play a way they hate just for a new shiny, or weaponize FOMO against the player. There will be limited-time events, but we don't want to turn free time into a chore. We're not all about that. Everyone should enjoy their time in Halo Infinite.
- Unambiguous Value. If someone invests their time or money in the game, they should understand what they're getting and that it will be worth more than the investment. Examples of this in practice include no lootboxes, either through engagement or any premium route. And we're not selling power or giving an unfair advantage in-game via any route.
Halo Infinite will release Fall 2021 on Xbox One, Xbox Series X/S, and PC.