So you may have already encountered these if you’re a regular visitor to Halo Waypoint, but - by the beard of Zeus, Halo 5: Guardians screenshots! They’re from this winter’s Xbox One beta, which is slated to run from 29th December 2014 to 18th January 2015, and comprises three modes, 11 weapons, seven maps and seven armour sets.
Two maps have been revealed so far - I’ve divided up the images accordingly. The new Halo is billed as a return to classic 4v4 arena multiplayer, with more of a focus on smaller engagements - the result, perhaps, of 343’s lionising Halo 2’s multiplayer as the act to follow during work on Halo: The Master Chief Collection, which launches on 11th November. Buy the latter if you’d like access to the beta.
The map below certainly seems tailored for close-quarters mayhem. Notice the floating oblong on the central platform - if that isn’t a heavy weapon drop, I’ll hand in my Spartan helmet. (Spoilers: I don’t actually own a Spartan helmet, so will need to acquire one before handing it in. Related: Does anybody own a Spartan helmet?) (Spoilers Part 2: The map below is actually a remake of Midship, according to reader DrydAykma.)
That’s not to say that fans of Halo 3’s scale will lose out. Arena multiplayer is only one “portion” of the game’s online offering, according to marketing materials that also make tantalising mention of all-new Armour Abilities. Can we have the Bubble Shield back, 343?
Here’s the second map, which seems a touch larger and more prosaic in visual design than the above, Covenant-built facility. Those boxy corners may suit fans of shotguns and beatdowns.
If you’re keen on Halo, it may interest you to know that we’ve put together a new Halo Special - an encylopedia of series intel that includes extensive interviews with 343 about forthcoming games on Xbox One.