Microsoft today announced that you'll be able to Master Chief it up with your consolepals in Halo Infinite, thanks to cross-platform multiplayer and progression. Details on how it will actually work are thin for now, but in theory that sounds neat. Nice to play with your pals. Though less fun to face mousefolk if you're playing on controller. Ah, we'll see in due time.
Microsoft explain that as well as cross-platform play, "your multiplayer customisation and progress will follow you across all platforms." Handy for people who play on both, I guess? They add that they want Hinfinite to offer "a premier PC experience, including highly desired features such as support for ultrawide and super ultrawide screens, triple keybinds, a wide variety of advanced graphics options and more." Yeah yeah, but will you relax that Microsoft Store security to enable modding?
I wouldn't be surprised if they made cross-platform matchmaking optional, or only enabled it with cross-platform parties, or something. On top of the differences between how people play with controllers or keyboard and mouse, PC sure does have a cheating problem. The preponderance of cheats on PC reportedly drove many Warzone players to disable cross-platform. Ubisoft have been hesistant about connecting PC and consoles in Rainbow Six Siege too.
This news comes from a blog post by Xbox Game Studios Matt Booty, titled "Continuing Our PC Gaming Journey in 2021 and Beyond". That's the sort of statement which would once have made me laugh, given Microsoft's long history of declaring love for PC gaming then doing naff all, but they really have done good lately.
Booty also noted that Microsoft plan to improve their PC gaming software with quality-of-life improvements "including improved install reliability and faster download speeds". They're also increase the cut developers get from PC game sales on the Microsoft Store, from 70% to 88% - matching the Epic Games Store. Huh! Should Steam follow suit?