Halo: The Master Chief Collection has often been the butt of jokes in the Halo fan community. Its launch in November of 2014 was an unmitigated disaster, introducing bizarre glitches to older games alongside matchmaking servers that were straight up busted. It took months for the game to become playable at all, and it never reached the pinnacle of what fans expected. The game was a massive technical undertaking, but that doesn’t excuse the fact that the product that was advertised never really materialized. With the subsequent release of Halo 5: Guardians, hope for a fix to the lingering gameplay issues seemed all but gone.
Now, in 2017, with the looming release of the Xbox One X, 343 Industries have found an opportunity to resume work on the title. Announced in a livestream alongside several other Halo updates (all of which are summarized over on Halo Waypoint), the updates to the Master Chief Collection are assumed to bring the game up to 4K graphically and upgrade the game’s engine to take advantage of the Xbox platform’s evolving feature set. The MCC portion of the livestream is shown below.
Due to the technical behemoth that Master Chief Collection is, these fixes are not finished as of now. 343 plans on working with the Halo community via a public “flighting” program that will get beta builds of the game to players on a regular basis. This public section of the Master Chief Collection beta is scheduled to take place in the Spring, so it can be assumed that any final version of the new MCC will be released far into 2018.
As someone who took the day off work just to stare at a loading screen for hours on end three years ago, I wholeheartedly appreciate 343’s efforts in righting the MCC ship. It’s completely a hearts and minds move, as the problems that still exist with the game now are things that your standard player wouldn’t flinch an eye at. Weapon physics and missing Forge features aren’t going to raise a lot of eyebrows, but if they can pull this off and deliver a version of Combat Evolved on Xbox Live that is perfect, then I might just be able to consider forgiving them for the loot box nightmare that is inevitably coming to Halo 6.