Ex-Halo Infinite developers have openly blamed Microsoft for its incompetent leadership following 10,000 employee layoffs this week.
As reported by Eurogamer, several former developers at 343 Industries have criticised the higher-ups at Microsoft on social media. Even before Halo Infinite launched, it seemed like a troubled development looking from the outside in.
Halo Infinite had troubles before it launched
Halo Infinite was supposed to have been an Xbox Series X|S launch title. However, following an underwhelming presentation and negative feedback from the community, Halo Infinite was delayed by over a year. So instead of releasing on November 10th, 2020, it would launch on December 8th, 2021.
While being fundamentally a fun game, Halo Infinite never seemed to quite get the classic vibe of the Bungie era. Furthermore, its free-to-play multiplayer offerings have had seasons delayed, not to mention those seasons overstaying its welcome.
343 cancelled the local Halo Infinite co-op
Furthermore, we’ve even had the likes of local campaign co-op cancelled by 343 Industries despite promises of its arrival. This was a big blow for fans of the series because the local Halo campaign co-op has been a popular feature ever since the 2001 original.
However, fans discovered that the local co-op was still present in the game. You just had to go through a few loopholes to find it. What’s more, tech experts at Digital Foundry tested the hidden co-op and described it as being “excellent” and “feels so close to completion.”
Former Halo Infinite developers have spoken
Following the unfortunate dismissal of 10,000 Microsoft employees, many of which were involved in the video game divisions, perhaps the continued woes of Halo Infinite are starting to make some sense.
Former senior multiplayer designer on Halo Infinite, Patrick Wren (now at Respawn Entertainment) criticised Microsoft for being “incompetent leadership up top”. However, Wren did make a point of stating that the multiplayer team on Halo Infinite are “amazing”.
The people I worked every day with were passionate about Halo and wanted to make something great for the fans. They helped push for a better Halo and got laid off for it.— Patrick Wren (@Witdarkstar) January 19, 2023
Devs still there are working hard on that dream. Look at Forge. Be kind to them during this awful time.
Wren also explained in another tweet that the 343 Industries team is full of passionate Halo fans currently working hard on Forge, and reminded fans to be kind.
Another former Halo Infinite developer, now also at Respawn, Tyler Owens spoke of the frustrations of Microsoft’s apparent business practices.
“As a Halo fan I’m really tired of Microsoft business practices & policies slowly killing the thing I love,” he tweeted. “Between the contracting policies they abuse for tax incentives & layoffs in the face of gigantic profits/executive bonuses… they set Halo up for failure.”
343 has suffered previous departures
Also reported by Eurogamer, Halo veteran and head of creative at 343 Industries, Joseph Staten has left the studio, returning to Xbox Game Studios publishing.
Moreover, this follows the departures of multiplayer creative director Tom French as well as 343 founder and general manager, Bonnie Ross.
It remains to be seen what the future holds for the Halo series. However, we hope all those impacted by the recent job losses at Microsoft land back on their feet ASAP.
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Featured Image Credit: 343 Industries/Source: Eurogamer