Developer 343 Industries dropped the full details on the first Halo 5: Guardians content update due out next week for the Xbox One exclusive first-person shooter. Titled “Battle of Shadow and Light,” the update adds Big Team Battle to the multiplayer mix as well as a ton of new REQs to unlock, including one hilariously painful new assassination.
As previously covered by the Inquisitr, the “Battle of Shadow and Light” update will be deployed for Halo 5 the week of November 16 and will add Big Team Battle with four maps to the Arena matchmaking bucket and Custom Games. The maps are not created by 343 Industries with their tools. Instead, these are Forge maps created by some of the top Forge map makers and inspired by Sidewinder/Avalanche, Standoff, Burial Mounds, Longbow, and Headlong.
The new maps are Deadlock, inspired by Standoff; Basin, inspired by Valhalla; Guillotine, inspired by Headlong; and Recurve, inspired by Longbow. Each should look familiar but have been tweaked “significantly adjusted for the new mobility, weapons and features of Halo 5,” according to 343 Industries.
“Each map maker selected a classic map on which to base their Big Team Battle map design,” 343 Industries Community Manager Andy “Bravo” Dudynksy wrote in a previous Halo Waypoint update. “These guys built day and night, continually preparing and perfecting their maps for the next playtest with the multiplayer and level design teams.”
Meanwhile, the “Battle of Shadow and Light” update also includes 48 new REQs, including the “ultra rare” Shinobi Armor Set to join the Tracer Armor Set revealed last week. There are also named Legendary Light Rifles being added to the mix along with “Green Machine” skins for UNSC weapons, “Woodland” variants for UNSC vehicles, and “Tundra” variants for UNSC vehicles.
The UNSC vehicle variants are improved versions of the standard vehicles. For example, the description of the Tundra Mantis describes it as “improved” with “extra armor.”
Perhaps the most interesting new REQ is the absolutely brutal “Shove It” Assassination. In the animated GIF below, you can see the red player attempt to attack the blue player with a knife. The blue player reverses the attack and shoves the knife into the red player’s faceplate. To add insult and even more injury, the blue player then knees the red player in the face to drive the knife all the way in. Ouch.
As you may have noticed, 343 Industries is going with named updates for Halo 5. This is something we’ve seen with updates in MOBAs, such as League of Legends and SMITE, but is still an interesting strategy shift for Halo.
For starters, a named update is instantly more recognizable than “update 1” or “November 2015 update.” Second, it allows for themed updates in the future that 343 Industries can use to market Halo 5 post-release with a PR-friendly name.
As a reminder, all Halo 5 updates are free. Developer 343 Industries went with the microtransaction model to support all content in the game post-release. Players who purchase the REQ Packs with real world money are not only funding the content updates but also the Halo World Championship prize pool. The first week of sales alone bumped the prize pool from $1 million to $1.5 million.
Updates to Halo 5 will be arriving monthly with 343 Industries teasing that the November update presents “just a hint of the content featured in next month’s update.” There are several ways to read that, but we do know the studio is working on Warzone Assault tuning, changing SWAT respawns to three seconds, and turning off friendly fire in the game mode, plus Competitive Skill Rank (CSR) tweaks. The start of Halo 5 multiplayer seasons and seasonal rewards are also coming along with tweaks to the current ban thresholds.
Controller updates are planned as well for future Halo 5 updates, starting with a bug affecting some players’ ability to turn quickly. The ability to tune vertical and horizontal sensitivities is also targeting the December update along with the ability to calibrate your own dead zones, more granularity in sensitivity, and other tweaks.
What do you think of the planned “Battle of Shadow and Light” update for Halo 5? Sound off in the comments below.
[Image via Halo Waypoint]