'Halo: The Master Chief Collection' Finally Works, Sees Boost In Popularity

Developer 343 Industries finally appears to have multiplayer in Halo: The Master Chief Collection working at satisfactory levels. This comes a mere 112 days after the shooter's Xbox One launch last November. A new patch released late Tuesday evening appears to have corrected the most problematic issues with the collection of Halo titles, but many issues still remain.

The changelog for the content update delivered to Halo: The Master Chief Collection on March 3 is short, but touches on key multiplayer issues like matchmaking and party stability. These issues affected most players with long wait times and the inability to keep their parties together.

  • Made a variety of updates to improve matchmaking performance and success rates
  • Improved matchmaking search times/time to match
  • Improved stability throughout the matchmaking process across all titles
  • Improved party stability

Players would spend five minutes or more trying to find a match, prior to this patch. They would also often find themselves in matches with unbalanced teams or their Xbox LIVE party split between teams. These appear to be gone now as players in the Halo, Xbox One sub-Reddits and elsewhere report matchmaking times of 30 to 50 seconds, a noticeable improvement. Teams are also evenly balanced and parties are not being split up.

The download size of the patch was nearly 700MB, so this appears to be a significant overhaul of the game's multiplayer infrastructure and not a mere tweaking of its code. These changes extend to Halo 2 Anniversary and Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary in the collection as well.

Halo 2
  • Made improvements to multiplayer shot registration
  • Improved campaign stability across a variety of levels
  • Addressed stability issues for matchmaking and custom games
  • Fixed issues around resuming H2A Campaign from "remastered" mode
  • Improved medal display consistency
Halo: Combat Evolved
  • Fixed issues regarding aim assist which resulted in the reticle being pushed away from an enemy
  • Improved shot registration consistency between host / client in peer-to-peer custom game matches
  • Resolved a variety of UI inconsistencies, including team color randomization, medals, and in-game scoreboard display

It's unfortunate that it took nearly four months for these issues to be resolved. Developer 343 Industries has apologized profusely and offered the Halo 3: ODST campaign, a new map, and a month of Xbox LIVE Gold to make up for the poor gameplay experience. Halo: The Master Chief Collection saw a significant drop-off in player population during that time, but is already back in the top ten most popular games on the Xbox Store since the patch was released. There appears to be some kind of bug on the website, however, that shows it listed twice.

Halo: Master Chief Collection - Xbox Store

There are still issues remaining though. Specifically, there are problems with file sharing, the Forge editing tools, ranks, post-game lobbies, and voice chat. Expect another patch in the April time frame to address additional issues.

Have you tried out Halo: Master Chief Collection since the latest patch? What have your experiences been?

[Images via Halo Waypoint]