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Halo Infinite Almost Took Its Cue From Overwatch

The multiplayer component of "Halo Infinite" has continued to be a popular free-to-play shooter, even after its hectic first event and apparent grind problem (which 343 Industries is working on). Still, some wonder what could've been had the game taken a different approach — like becoming a hero-based shooter instead. 

YouTuber Chris Ray Gun raised the topic earlier this week, which led to rumors about "Halo Infinite" originally being an "Overwatch" clone. In his tweet, Chris Ray Gun alleged that a significant amount of the budget for "Halo Infinite" went into essentially copying the "Overwatch" hero formula before development eventually scrapped the idea. Then, the team apparently created the current version of "Infinite" with its last two years of development. 

However, commenters weren't sure how serious the claim was, considering the brevity of the tweet and lack of context behind it. Robeytech, another content creator with a similarly large following even dismissed Chris Ray Gun's claim, saying it didn't happen. What really gave the initial comment credibility was a response from Bloomberg journalist Jason Schreier, who is a well-known source for insider info and hard-hitting reporting. 

The truth of Halo's Overwatch dreams

Schreier responded to a Reddit post about the tweet, where he shed some light on the truth behind Chris Ray Gun's claims. "This was actually cut from my article late last year," Schreier said of the "Overwatch" clone comments. "Yes, 343 spent a while prototyping a hero-based system."

He noted that he didn't remember exactly when the devs switched to working on the current version — and cautioned that the linked tweet seemed to be highly exaggerated — but Schreier said that the base claim is true. 343 Industries apparently spent a decent amount of time working on "various hero-based prototypes." 

"In fact, I think there were both PVP and PVE prototypes built," Schreier added. He didn't specify whether or not that meant PVE as in a single-player mode or training modes against CPUs. 

Whatever the case, "Halo Infinite" ended up doing just fine without a hero-based mode. Some fans still express disappointment in the graphical quality of the final product, but "Halo Infinite" has became a competent competitor against trending free-to-play shooters. In fact, fans have also applauded the idea of a free-to-play multiplayer shooter without a battle royale mode. In that sense, it checks out that the lack of a hero-based mode ultimately made "Halo Infinite" feel more original and stand out next to its competitors. 

"Halo Infinite" available for PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X|S. You have to pay for the full game to experience the campaign, but the multiplayer mode is free for all supported platforms.