Halo Could Make The Jump From Slipspace To Unreal Engine – Report

343 Industries’ homegrown Slipspace engine used for Halo Infinite could be retired in favor of Epic Games’ popular Unreal engine, according to a report by journalist Jeremy Penter.

According to Penter, Halo will “definitely” be moving to Unreal. Pender reports that the information has been confirmed by “multiple sources” and that the decision to make the change has already been made. Note that Penter isn’t specifically referring to Halo Infinite making the jump to Unreal, but rather Halo as a franchise. This means that Halo Infinite could be stuck in Slipspace (and it very likely will be), but future installments could run in Unreal.

Penter’s tweet comes in response to speculation surrounding Halo Infinite co-developer Certain Affinity working on a major new mode (which could potentially be a battle royale) for Halo Infinite rumored to be working on Unreal and not in Slipspace. However, no specific details about the mode, engine, or how it will relate to Halo Infinite have been made official yet.

Converting Halo Infinite itself to Unreal seems unlikely to convert 343, as it would likely result in 343 having to redo much of the work it’s done over the past few years. For what it’s worth, the Hello Leaks The Twitter account (which often shares Halo Infinite cutscenes or teases upcoming ones) believes from what it’s seen that Certain Affinity could use the Unreal engine for its new mode, but that it doesn’t think the same 343 Industries will make the change. Windows Central reporting that it has heard that Certain Affinity’s Halo project may not be running in Slipspace and that Halo in the future could move to Unreal seems to add some credence to Penter’s statements.

Slipspace notoriously took years to develop and is one of the main reasons for the long, six-year wait between Halo 5: Guardians and Halo Infinite. In theory, switching to a more widely used game engine like Unreal could potentially solve some of 343’s production problems. 343 publicly committed to a 10-year plan for Halo Infinite, but nearly a year into that plan, it seems to be debated whether or not 343 can pull it off. Frequent content delays and infrequent updates have led to frustration in the game’s community.

Halo Infinite was delayed for a year, just months before its planned November 2020 release, and when it finally arrived a year later, it did so without key features like Forge and co-op. Halo Infinite’s multiplayer content updates have also been delayed multiple times, and when they do arrive, fans have found them to be sparse on new content. The game’s third multiplayer season, which is set to introduce new maps, weapons and more, was recently pushed back to March 2023. 343 recently made the decision to cut the game’s previously promised splitscreen co-op mode, saying it had to to redistribute his priorities.

The rumors of the move to Unreal come as 343 Industries is experiencing a leadership shakeup, with studio head Bonnie Ross recently leaving the developer after 15 years. The lead engineer behind the Slipspace engine, David Berger, also recently left the studio.

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