Big changes are coming for Halo Infinite esports — it will be both cross-platform and cross-input, allowing pros to play using either a controller or keyboard & mouse on both PC and Xbox consoles.
Halo Infinite is the next big game in the long-running Halo series. This hotly-anticipated game missed the launch window of the Xbox Series X|S as the developers needed more time to get it ready for release. Since then, the developers have continued to work on getting it ready for a likely 2021 launch.
The developers aren't the only ones with some preparation to do, though. The Halo Championship Series is the official body for organized esports play and it, too, has a lot of work to do as the game gets closer to launch. Today, it dropped a heck of a bombshell for veteran and future pro players — not only will PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S be playing together, but players will get to choose between using a controller or a keyboard & mouse.
Why Halo Infinite Esports is Mixing Controllers and Keyboard & Mouse
This announcement raises one critical question — why is Halo Infinite esports mixing controller players with keyboard & mouse players? The strengths and weaknesses of these two input methods have been a long-running debate in the gaming world. Despite this, Halo's esports lead Tahir "Tashi" Hasandjekic is not shying away from addressing the challenges.
"Yet another war has waged on for decades in gaming and that’s the one of Mouse & Keyboard vs Controller," Tashi said in a news post on the Halo website (via ResetEra). "Once again, however, our aim is not to arbitrarily try to settle the score and just pick one over the other. Our aim is to be as inclusive as possible to grow the competitive community around the world. Because of that, we are going to allow players to compete on controller or mouse and keyboard regardless of platform. This means you might see entire teams on controller, entire teams on MKB, or teams with mixed MKB and controller players. We will also allow for MKB players to play on the Xbox Series X at live events if they’re in the open bracket. For those who didn’t compete in Halo because it wasn’t available on PC and was controller only – we welcome you with open arms and wish you the best of luck in the scene."
This cross-input policy is certainly something new in the esports world when it comes to competitions as large as Halo esports. Typically, esports competitions are locked to a specific input method and platform.
It remains to be seen how this is going to affect esports in the long run — will keyboard & mouse players dominate or will the playing field remain relatively even? We're sure to find out once the game actually launches and its esports competitions get underway. You can test out the theory for yourself right now by playing against some bots in the Halo Infinite tech preview.
What do you think of the changes to Halo Infinite esports? Do you think controller players or keyboard & mouse players will perform better in the long run? Let us know in the comments below!