I sure didn't think years ago that the upstart "battle royale" shooter format would be survive long enough to hassle a major series like Halo and yet here we are. 343 Industries have said they aren't doing a Halo Infinite battle royale mode, and yet the rumors and speculation persist. Now, an allegedly datamined audio file from the weekend's first Halo Infinite technical preview loudly proclaims "battle royale!" in no uncertain terms. Naturally everyone is back to wondering whether or not a massive last-Spartan-standing mode is really in Halo's future.
Halo Infinite kicked off its first technical preview for Halo Insiders last week and of course those insiders have already gotten their hands dirty digging for secrets. Dataminers have already uncovered story spoilers from the technical preview build and now they claim to have found a rather interesting sound file.
I'll let it speak for itself:
If you aren't able to listen, it's a rather short clip of what seems to be the familiar Halo series multiplayer announcer declaring "Battle Royale!"
Given that the year is 2021, my first thought is of course that this could be faked. It isn't hard to imagine folks wanting to stir up a bit of extra speculation on the subject of a possible battle royale mode in Halo Infinite. We've reached out to Xbox Game Studios for comment on whether or not the audio is genuine and I'll be sure to fill you all in if we hear one way or the other.
Even if this is a very real sound clip destined for Halo Infinite's eventual launch, it may not be some 100 player Last Spartan Standing mode. As others have speculated in the post where the audio was shared, this could be a simple Slayer mode alternative in Infinite's free multiplayer. It could also be a bit of cheek available in Infinite's Forge Mode or custom games.
Real or fake, big or small, folks sure are plenty happy to keep gabbing about what a Halo Infinite battle royale mode could look like and whether or not they'd want it.
Battle royales are clearly here to stay for a while yet—they are fun, after all—and so even the biggest of the big series are now expected to answer whether or not their next games will include one. Obviously Call Of Duty: Warzone already exists. Meanwhile upcoming Battlefield 2042 won't have a battle royale mode.
343 have previously given a few different answers on the subject, saying in 2018 that, "The only 'BR' we're really interested in 'Battle Rifle.' The original BR." In 2019 they gave a more open-ended answer. In 2020, 343 referred to Halo Infinite as a "platform for the future" and said that "It’s really about creating Halo Infinite as the start of the next ten years for Halo and then building that as we go with our fans and community."
In the end, heck, who knows? If 343 did have a giant Spartan royale mode in the works for launch, I find it hard to believe it would still be under wraps. With their plans to support Infinite for many years to come—and the continued popularity of the BR format—an Infinite royale mode could still happen someday though.
Elsewhere in Infinite technical preview news, you can watch a full multiplayer match from last week.
Halo Infinite is planning to launch this Holiday season with a new John Spartan story campaign, free multiplayer, and cross-platform play between PC and Xbox players.