Halo Infinite players will finally be able to try out campaign co-op when 343 Industries’ test period begins July 11. The 10-day event — running from July 11 to July 22 — is open to anyone that owns the Halo Infinite campaign or has an active Xbox Game Pass subscription.
343 Industries said the full launch of Halo Infinite’s campaign co-op is expected later this year. Cooperative campaign and Halo Infinite’s level-editor Forge Mode has been delayed a few times since the game’s launch. No word yet on the official release date for either campaign co-op or Forge mode.
You won’t be able to try this out on your current Halo Infinite save, however. To access the beta, players must download a new campaign test build and start fresh — no progress will carry over from your original save, and progress will not transfer back to your original game either. The full Halo Infinite campaign will be accessible, however, via online co-op with up to four players. During this period, players will also be able to replay Halo Infinite campaign missions with a new feature — Mission Replay, which was missing from the game’s launch last year.
To get into the beta, players have to join the Xbox Insider Program. Players accessing the game from Steam have until July 5 to sign up, but there’s no deadline for those playing elsewhere.
Alongside the Halo Infinite beta start date, 343 Industries published an interview with principal software engineering lead Isaac Bender and lead world designer John Mulkey. The two developers went long on all aspects of the beta — including how co-op works. Apparently, the Halo Infinite co-op is complicated because it lets all players make progress on their own campaigns individually, all while playing together. A squad of Master Chiefs!
Here’s how Mulkey and Bender put it:
Mulkey: This is one of the areas I am really excited about. The goal going in was to “allow everyone to play their campaigns together.” This meant that all progress made in the game, regardless of it being through Solo or Co-Op play, would be retained. I could be playing Solo campaign, jump into a Co-Op session for a few hours, then launch back into Solo play and all the mission progress, acquired collectibles, equipment found, achievements earned, and upgrades made in either session would be intact. Gone are the days of playing someone else’s game while earning no progress.
The way we are handling this is through something we internally refer to as “No Spartan Left Behind”. When players join the Fireteam and choose their save slots to play on, the game aggregates the states of all missions across those saves and sets up a world state in which any missions completed by all Fireteam members are marked as complete while any missions not completed by all are marked as incomplete.
Isaac: You can think of this system as creating a version of the world that’s like the “lowest common denominator” (or “intersection,” if you’re into set theory) of everyone’s Campaign progress. This way, no matter what you do, no one is completing missions out of order.
What this means is that any unlocks you find in Co-Op are retained in single-player. So, if you’re having a really hard time collecting a Skull, you can get in a game with a friend, and if they collect it while you’re in that session, you’ll get it too!
Mulkey and Bender also discussed adding the Mission Replay feature. Without it at launch, some Halo Infinite levels and areas remained gated off from players after initial completion — specifically the first area. Players will be able to head back into any mission, including those previously gated, without starting a new save file.
You can replay missions from the Tac-Map, which will now prompt a Replay button when highlighting a completed mission.