Halo 5 Undergoing Big Changes

The Beta for Halo 5: Guardians recently ended, and it looks like a hell of a lot of people played, which in turn means a hell of a lot of people have something to say about it. 343 industries Executive Producer Josh Holmes has been taking all of this on board, and has outlined what exactly will be changing in time for the games launch.

But before we get in to the changes, take a look at this info graphic, it has some pretty astounding stats.

haloAll of this happened in about a month, that’s pretty impressive!

Now, on to the changes. A recent post on Halo Waypoint went in to detail about everything that will be happening.

SPARTAN ABILITIES

The results from the HCFP surveys showed that nearly 11% of responders from Halo Community Feedback Program felt that Halo 5 should not have sprint. As a result, Halo 5 custom games will allow players to toggle all Spartan abilities on and off, including sprint. Other changes incoming are:
• Increase base speed (faster base movement)
• Increase strafe acceleration (faster, more responsive strafing)
• Reduce top sprint speed (narrow the delta between base movement and sprint)
• Modify Ground Pound controls to prevent conflicts w/ crouch jumping
• General tuning & bug fixes for all Spartan Abilities (Thrusters, Clamber, Ground Pound, etc.)

WEAPONS

The Hydra weapon will be getting a buff. A lot of players thought was difficult to use. As a result it will be tweaked to “make it more effective out of zoom and ensure that it feels like a true power weapon.” Other changes include:
• Sniper Rifle: improve scope experience to making it less “clunky” and faster to scope
• DMR: adjust position of the scope to improve visibility
• Bring back the SPNKr Rocket Launcher as a legendary version of the weapon
• Reduce bonuses for automatic weapons in Smart-Link & w/ headshots
• Remove grenade detonation in mid-air based on weapon fire
• Ability to turn on/off vibration feedback for weapons
• General tuning and bug fixing for all weapons

PRESENTATION

The ‘bro’ moments were something I didn’t like much, and it seems like a lot of other people feel the same way as 343i is going to tone it down during the intro and victory sequences. “Expect the final sequences to feature considerably fewer chest bumps and high fives,”. Other changes include:

•Post-death replay: this will become an opt-in feature. After death, players will see a traditional follow-cam and have the option to view a replay of their death from the killer’s perspective (as long as the feature is enabled within the playlist)
• Medals: decrease frequency and number of medals displayed in the medal feed
• Spartan chatter: players will have the option to turn this on or off in the settings menu
• Adding highlights to placed/dropped weapons to make them easier to see
• General tuning for announcer and Spartan chatter to reduce the frequency of events and focus on the information that matters most to players

COMPETITIVE SKILL RATING

Another common complaint was that good players who performed well in losing teams, felt they should not be penalised for losing. However, Holmes believes that K/D ratios aren’t everything and team play matters. Upcoming changes include:
• Improved skill detection during placement phase
• Improved skill matching
• Improved team balancing
• Prevent skill boosting
• General bug fixing & tuning

MATCHMAKING

Halo 5 matchmaking attempts to find the right balance between finding matches quickly and fairly, with a decent selection of player abilities. 343i “weren’t satisfied with the balance that we achieved” during the course of the beta. Changes include:
• Much faster matches
• Better skill matching
• Better feedback to players in the lobby and matchmaking experiences
• Allow players to set desired datacenter for matchmaking (may impact matchmaking speed and skill balance)
• Improved party vs party matchmaking
• Hide CSR ranks until in match to de-incentivize quitting
• Punish quitters with CSR penalties and matchmaking bans

That pretty much sums it up. You can check out the full post here.

I think that all these changes sound really good. I enjoyed the Beta a lot, and it felt like a good evolution of the Halo franchise without taking it too far away from its roots. Let’s hope the final product lives up to the hype!

– Will

 

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