343 Industries are cashing in on a long-running Halo joke, but the level of microtransactions in Halo Infinite is beginning to wear on some players.
Microtransactions in games have always been a hot point of contention within the gaming community. While the rise to power of Battle Royales has seen free-to-play games take center stage, microtransactions are large part of what keeps the machine working. Games like Fortnite and Call of Duty: Warzone offer players the option of buying cosmetic items with their own real-life cash to use in game. While there's rarely any competetive advantage to buying these cosmetics, it can sometimes feel that games are going a little bit too far with what's on offer.
That seems to be the case with Halo Infinite and its recent 'Mister Chief' bundle. The bundle includes an AI themed around the in-game joke complete with voice lines, an emblem, and a charm. The price for all of this sits at 2,000 Credits, placing the real-life total at roughly $20.
Not only is this close to a third of the price for the campaign, but AIs have a fairly limited usage in the game's mulitplayer. Outside of a few interactions, these features perhaps aren't as striking as a full armor set or some skins. Needless to say the fan reaction to the bundle hasn't been warm.
Fans Disappointed in Halo Infinite’s ‘Mister Chief’ Bundle
Many fans took to both Twitter and Reddit to voice their disappointment with the bundle. @LateNightHalo said, "The voices of war was 10 bucks and had more value than this. Read the room. This isn’t what we want."
Over on Reddit, user P_Wood said, "$20 for an AI, emblem, and charm might take the cake for biggest ripoff in the store yet."
343 Industries has previously acknowledged the issue when it came to some previous microtransations. Earlier this month, players boycotted the Fracture Tenrai in-game event after advertised rewards were revealed to be paid cosmetics. The event's rewards were instead some XP Boosts and Challenge Swaps. In response, Halo devs admitted that event content being behind a paywall was a "mistake" and soon rectified it by replacing the Challenge Swaps and XP Boosts with items initially only available via the in-game store.
Sadly, though, with this 'Mister Chief' bundle it seems that 343 Industries has missed the mark once again. It's clear that their paid cosmetics model needs some reworking, and while the studio has said that they're looking into it, only time will tell if the improvements will be enough.