IntroductionHalo Infinite is with us finally, 18 months adrift from its original launch. The smash-hit story-driven first-person shooter franchise spanning several titles is the flagship of Microsoft Game Studios, which has been around for 20 years now. It depicts a future rivalry between a space-faring humanity and an alien coalition called "The Covenant," who worship an ancient civilization that built giant habitable ring worlds which are the setting for most Halo games.
The human war effort is led by the United Nations Space Command, and its elite group of super-soldiers called Spartans. Our protagonist is known simply as Master Chief. Halo Infinite follows the events of Halo 5: Guardians. A Covenant faction attacks and raids a UNSC warship, with its leader jettisoning Master Chief into space, who is much later rescued by a tactical transport ship captain. This ship is intercepted by the Covenant to find the resuscitated Master Chief, who must take down the ship and discovers a new superweapon and an AI powering it.
Developed by 343 Industries, a Microsoft game studio, Halo Infinite is powered by the in-house Slipspace Engine. Since the Halo franchise is essentially a "console seller" for Xbox, it's designed primarily to play well on the Xbox One series, with dialed-up eye-candy for the latest Xbox Series X/S. On the PC, it doesn't support ray tracing, but the developer promises this capability will be added post-launch. The PC experience should closely resemble that of the Series X, a big part of which is gameplay at 4K Ultra HD resolution. This is pushed by high-resolution assets. Xbox Series X, powered by an AMD RDNA2 GPU, achieves 4K playability leveraging many optimizations, the biggest of which has to be supersampling. The PC version supports neither AMD FSR not NVIDIA DLSS. In this mini-review, we put Halo Infinite through a selection of DirectX 12 capable graphics cards.