343 Industries disappointed Halo fans everywhere with its announcement of Halo Infinite's delay. The Xbox Series X was supposed to launch with the newest addition to the Halo series, and now that's not going to happen.
Gamers won't see Halo Infinite hit the Xbox Series X until sometime in 2021. The Xbox Series X is set to launch in November 2020, and the absence of Halo Infinite is a huge blow to the console's success.
Microsoft Lacks the Ammunition to Compete With Sony
Without Halo Infinite, the Xbox Series X is at a huge disadvantage. So far, the console has very little first-party games. Halo Infinite was supposed to be the selling point, but now Microsoft will have to rely on third-party AAA titles, previous-gen games, and indie titles.
Let's be real: who's going to shell out hundreds of dollars to play games already available on previous-gen consoles? Gears 5 and Rainbow Six Siege will both be playable on the launch date of the Xbox Series X, and I can't see flocks of people rushing to buy the console to specifically play those games. Even the Xbox Series X's console exclusives (which are mostly third-party games) aren't enough to steal the spotlight from the PS5.
Perhaps the Xbox Series X's only selling point is its expanded Game Pass Ultimate service. Microsoft's vice president of gaming, Phil Spencer, announced that Project xCloud will be coming to Game Pass Ultimate in September 2020 at no extra cost.
The integration of Game Pass Ultimate and Project xCloud gives gamers access to over 100 Game Pass titles, all of which you can play on your console, tablet, or smartphone. This sounds great and all, but there's one problem: when will we see amazing AAA titles come to the service? Although Destiny 2's expansion packs will launch on the service on November 10th, it's still not enough to feed hungry gamers.
Meanwhile, Sony has a number of PS5 first-party exclusives, such as Horizon Forbidden West, Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales, and Ratchet & Clank: Rift Apart. Not all of these games will come out on launch date, but the fact that they exist gives Sony a leg up on Microsoft. These AAA console-exclusives are enough to get players excited for the PS5, and the Xbox Series X lacks that excitement.
Halo Infinite's Delay Still Has Its Benefits
Halo Infinite's delay is good for Halo, but not for Microsoft. While the delay might impede the success of the Xbox Series X, it could still benefit the game itself.
AAA developers have become notorious for rushing games, which is just one of the reasons why AAA games are getting worse. During a time when unfinished games are the norm, it's actually refreshing to hear that a game has been delayed.
Hopefully, 343 Industries will take the time it needs to get Halo Infinite where it needs to be. The last thing the Xbox Series X needs is a flop as its flagship title.
Is the Xbox Series X Really Worth It Without Halo Infinite?
So far, the Xbox Series X doesn't seem too appealing. Diehard Xbox fans might buy the new console out of dedication, but it really doesn't attract new, non-Xbox gamers.
Halo Infinite is one of the very few first-party games on the console, and its delayed release sets the Xbox Series X up for a late success. After all, gamers might opt to purchase the Xbox Series X when Halo Infinite actually comes out. And since the PS5 has a solid lineup of games, some impatient players might even choose to purchase a PS5 instead.
Sometimes, it's best not to upgrade to a new console right away. If you're still wondering whether you should get a new gaming system, check out our article on the pros and cons of upgrading to a next-gen console: