Xbox

Halo MCC will be broken for near future


343 Industries has provided an update on the ongoing issues with Halo: The Master Chief Collection. Bonnie Ross, the head of 343, released a message earlier today directed at fans. While she conveys how hard the studio is working to fix the game’s many problems, she also paints a bleak picture for those hoping to play a fully functioning product anytime soon.

First, Ross apologizes for the problems:

With the initial release of Halo: The Master Chief Collection, however, we have not delivered the experience you deserve. I personally apologize for this on behalf of us all at 343 Industries. Our team is committed to working around the clock until these issues are resolved.

For matchmaking, Ross promises server updates and new game content (like playlists, modes) in the coming weeks. She again emphasizes that the studio is working tirelessly to fix the game’s matchmaking woes:

On the matchmaking front, we have encountered unexpected issues that were not apparent in our internal test environment and that have resulted in a frustrating experience, including long matchmaking times and low session success rates. Within 343 Industries and Xbox, I can assure you that resolving these issues is our #1 priority. We continue to partner with the Xbox platform team to analyze all data to make ongoing server-side adjustments to continually improve the matchmaking experience. We are also preparing additional content updates that will address existing campaign, UI, and other issues to improve the overall experience. With each update we will carefully analyze data to confirm that the improvements we’re seeing internally are also happening with fans at home. Know that we’re trying to be as nimble as possible to put fixes in place. We are planning multiple server-side tweaks and game content updates over the coming weeks.

Very heartfelt message from Ross. 343 knows they messed up big time with the Master Chief Collection and they’re frantically trying to piece things together. Sadly the message from Ross communicates to me something I desperately didn’t want to hear: That Halo will be broken for the near future.

Halo-The-Master-Chief-Collection

While this message instills a little bit of hope in me, it does worry me that Ross says these fixes will “over the coming weeks.” Sounds like the game will continue to be broken leading into Christmas. That’s not something Microsoft or 343 can afford.

The longer this PR disaster plays out, the more damage it does for 343 and Microsoft. First, if these issues aren’t ironed out by Christmas and Xbox One sales are effected by it, you better believe Microsoft will come down hard on 343, whether they deserve it or not.

I’m not saying 343 will lose staff or anything like that but this will definitely put some unnecessary pressure on the team leading up to Halo 5’s release next holiday.

Additionally, some consumers may fear going back to the Halo franchise. Personally I know that Halo MCC doesn’t represent Halo 5: Guardians though some less educated gamers may not have as much patience or sympathy for 343. This could cause some consumers to pass on the Xbox One for the time being, especially if Halo MCC was the main game they were interested in playing on the platform.

I believe 343 is doing everything in their power to fix this mess. Statements like “over the coming weeks,” doesn’t give me very much hope that Halo will be working the way it should have been at launch anytime soon. It seems Ross and 343 are telling fans that while they’re working very hard, the game will be filled with issues for the near future.

Personally I don’t know how long I’d wait for 343. I suppose I’ll give Halo MCC until the Halo 5 beta in late December-mid January to get fixed. It seemed laughable on launch day to think that Halo’s issues would persist into 2015, let alone Thanksgiving. Now it seems like there is a good chance Halo MCC won’t be fixed until the end of the holiday season or close to it.

Did you buy Halo MCC? How long would you wait for 343 to fix the game before entirely giving up, knowing that they’re forecasting these issues to last for a few more weeks at the least? Let us know in the comments below what you think about it.