Halo Infinite will be missing two big features at launch

Halo Infinite is undoubtedly one of the biggest – if not the biggest – Xbox games of the year, but thus far, it's had a fairly troubled development. Originally slated to be a launch title for the Xbox Series X last year, Microsoft and 343 Industries ultimately delayed the game into 2021, and now Halo Infinite is expected out during the holiday season. Now, 343 Industries has confirmed that Halo Infinite will be launching without two big features that have been important parts of the franchise for years.

In a lengthy developer update published today, 343's Joseph Staten revealed that neither campaign co-op nor Forge mode will be available in Halo Infinite on day one. "Unfortunately as we focused the team for shutdown and really focused on a quality experience for launch, we made the really tough decision to delay shipping campaign co-op for launch, and we also made the tough call to delay shipping Forge past launch as well," Staten said (jump to around 17:05 in the video embedded below for the announcement of these delays).

Instead of launching with the game, Staten says that 343 is targeting a season 2 launch for campaign co-op, while Forge is expected to launch in season 3. Staten also clarified that seasons should last around three months, which means that campaign co-op should arrive around three months after launch, and Forge should be available six months after launch.

These are some fairly big losses for Halo Infinite. Campaign co-op has been core to the Halo experience since the very first Halo game, while Forge is a multiplayer map editor that first launched in Halo 3 and has proven to be very popular in its own right.

While this obviously isn't great news, there was a silver lining about today's announcement, as Staten said that 343 is still "100% committed" to meeting Halo Infinite's holiday 2021 launch window. In addition, he says that it shouldn't be too much longer before a precise release date is nailed down, so hopefully, we'll finally have a release date soon. We'll let you know when 343 and Microsoft announce the release date for Halo Infinite, so stay tuned for more.