As promised, 343 Industries posted the latest update on Halo Infinite where they focus on the expansive world of Zeta Halo, gorgeously rendered in 4K.
Halo Infinite's February update is certainly one to feast your upon, as 343 rolled out some glorious screenshots and concept art of the equally as glorious in-game world. Behold, Zeta Halo.
It's not all just pretty pictures, mind you, as there's ample commentary provided by Halo Infinite campaign art lead Justin Dinges, gameplay director Troy Mashburn and world design lead John Mulkey.
And the point where all three agree is that the world of Halo Infinite had to be built on two key themes in order to resonate with the passionate community. The first one is legacy, which ensures you innately know the world you're in, and secondly simplicity.
"We wanted to take this new adventure back to its roots and create a visually pleasing experience that doesn’t overwhelm with unnecessary complexity where readability and clear artistic composition prevail. This is our artistic interpretation of a beautiful world to exist within – rather than something that is purely grounded in photo realism", Dinges said.
That said, no video game design is complete until there's a little fun to be had there, and the Halo Infinite team made sure there are ample opportunities to fool around.
"It is not enough that there are roads connecting various points of interest, we want to make sure there are opportunities for "Sick JumpsTM" the player can hit when racing along on a Mongoose with a Marine on the back. We make sure there are opportunities that allow certain weapon choices to shine, opportunities for really satisfying use of equipment options, and opportunities for a well-placed Plasma Coil to really put a smile across your face", Mulkey said.
Mashburn's take on designing games is about amazing experiences, and he specifically mentioned The Silent Cartographer from Halo CE as a perfect example of feeling high and mighty. "Recapturing the feeling of this mission has been one of the inspirations behind my gameplay direction", he said.
There's also the unique feeling of a new experience, hence the team's inclusion of the Grappleshot, as well as the visual contrast between Zeta Halo and Banished architecture.
Halo Infinite's Time-of-Day lighting system, however, absolutely takes the cake in this episode of Inside Infinite, and we strongly encourage you to go check out the full resolution image over at Halo Waypoint .
It's perhaps a bit ironic that so much work goes into something that most players will barely notice, but they say the best art is like salad dressing - you don't really know it's there until you've taken it away. Here's a taste of what we're talking about, but seriously - go look at it, you won't be sorry.