If you ask me, the best part of Halo Infinite is Big Team Battle, an epic 24-player mode that lets you squad up with up to 11 friends across Xbox, cloud and Windows PC – but it’s full of matchmaking bugs that keep games from starting, knocking your friends out, or even crash the game. Today 343 Industries makes another effort to make things better with a new patch that is now live.
The changelog of the February 3rd patch is pretty straightforward, mainly saying that there have been unspecified “service improvements” in Big Team Battle’s matchmaking and that “[p]layers should find full matches faster and more consistently.”
But 343 Industries had previously telegraphed that today could be the substantial solution we’ve been waiting for. Here’s what a developer wrote on the Halo Infinite forums six days ago:
Using the telemetry we received from the hotfix on January 19, we were able to create a new build with an update that we believe should fix the core issue affecting the BTB playlist. The studio passed a successful playtest today and plans to send it in for certification this Monday. After it has been sent, it will take some time to go through the certification process and find out if it has been approved. Once it’s approved, we’ll start preparing to make it public. Since there is still a bit more of the internal release process to go through, we expect this hotfix to land at the earliest next Thursday, February 3rd.
Today is February 3rd, and here’s a Big Team Battle matchmaking patch right on track.
Whether it will actually be the the solution is still in dispute: 343 thought it was also solved on January 19, but was disappointed to find it was not solved. But I have to give them a big compliment for being so transparent with players, and quick to admit that more work was needed. And speaking of communication:
Hey folks. Back in November I said we’re having a… #HaloInfinite update on our seasonal roadmap, Co-Op and Forge in January. We need more time to finalize our plans, so what we’re sharing is something you can rely on. This work is my top priority and we will update as soon as possible.
— Joseph Staten (@joestates) February 1, 2022
I won’t know until tonight if I can convince my friends to give Big Team Battle another try. They had sworn off after too many temp bans because out of solidarity with others they had stopped a match being kicked by the bugs.
Here’s the rest of today’s changelog, which covers multiplayer only and should come in with a 1.1GB download:
Improvements in the matchmaking service for Big Team Battle (BTB). Players should find full matches faster and more consistently.
Scorpion Tanks and Wraiths appear more often on BTB maps.
Fireteam members in BTB matches have the selected Fireteam marker color, but can still start the match in different parts of the map.
Updated Execution Participation Rules to prevent matchmaking in games nearing completion.
Changes to Oddball in both the Ranked and Arena Multiplayer playlists: If the score is tied when a round’s timer expires, one minute is added back to the timer. If the score is tied at the end of the extra minute, the round is declared a tie. The match ends when two separate rounds end in a draw and the win goes to the team with more rounds won.
Halo Championship Series (HCS) variant of Free-For-All Slayer added to the custom game mode list.
In Custom Games, changes to Free-For-All Slayer, FFA Oddball, Neutral Flag, and Tactical Slayer game options are updated correctly.
More Scorpion tanks and flying Wraiths on Big Team Battle maps? Thumbs up from me.