Gamescom: ‘Halo 5’ Xbox One Beta Given First Look And New Details

New details and the first screenshots for the Halo 5: Guardians multiplayer beta on the Xbox One were revealed during Microsoft’s 2014 Gamescom media briefing on Tuesday.

The Halo 5 beta will launch on December 29, 2014 and run for three weeks until January 18, 2015. It will feature seven multiplayer maps designed for four versus four gameplay and three gametypes. There will also be eleven sandbox weapons and seven armor sets to customize Spartans with. Items that players unlock during the beta will also carry over to the retail release planned for the fall 2015.

The first screenshots released for the game show a redesign of the Midship map from Halo 2 plus an all new map.

Additionally, 343 Industries confirmed again that everyone will start on equal footing and there will be no loadouts. Design director Bradfor Welch made similar explanations around E3 earlier this year.

Executive Producer Josh Holmes and Multiplayer Designer Quinn Del Hoyo expanded on this in the Halo 5 multiplayer beta trailer released for Gamescom.

“It’s celebrating the legacy of competitive gameplay that’s always been at the heart of Halo’s multiplayer,” Holmes said.

“Halo’s always been a great competitive game. That old school feeling of what is an arena shooter; four players on each team, controlling weapons on maps, controlling the map itself, your teammates being in the right position,” Del Hoyo added.

Holmes also explained why they are doing a beta for Halo 5 so early.

“Having a beta this early this early in development is crucial because it gives us as developers the opportunity to react to the feedback we get from fans and take it into account as we complete the multiplayer experience for Halo 5: Guardians,” he explained.

Interestingly, the existing Halo Waypoint app for Xbox will be replaced with the Halo Channel. It will allow Xbox One owners to watch existing programming like Halo 4: Forward Unto Dawn and Halo Legends plus upcoming programming such as Halo: Nightfall and Halo the Television Series. Community content will be available including all the lore contained in the Halo Encyclopedia, livestreaming via Twitch, stats and more. Halo 5 beta players will also be able to give their feedback on the game through the channel.

Those interested in the Halo 5 multiplayer beta can participate but picking up Halo: The Master Chief Collection when it releases on November 11, 2014.

What do you think of these Halo 5 multiplayer screenshots and details? Sound off in the comments below.

[Images via Xbox Wire, Halo Waypoint]