As the release of the Xbox Series X creeps closer, Microsoft has been releasing more information about the console and its accompanying games. Of course, like all Microsoft hardware, one of the most important game franchises will be Halo. For the Xbox Series X, the first title will be Halo Infinite, which was shown off during the Games Showcase a few weeks ago. With people seeking more information about the games from the showcase, online stores have created game listings for this title. However, one such listing might have accidentally confirmed a rumor we have been following for a few weeks.
The game's listing contained some new, unrevealed information about the multiplayer aspect of the upcoming title, saying,
The legendary Halo series returns with the most expansive Master Chief campaign yet and a groundbreaking free-to-play multiplayer experience. Enjoy up to 120 FPS and greatly reduced load times creating seamless gameplay with Xbox Series X.
This passage, which has since been removed from the page, makes a big deal about two new features: 120 FPS and free-to-play multiplayer. Now, there are two ways to interpret this reveal - both being a major turn of events for the franchise. The first is that it will not require paying for Xbox Live to play the game. It could also mean that part of the game will be available to players without buying the game, similar to how Fortnite works. Either way, this is a major change for Halo and the revenue model for games and services on Xbox Series X.
Since the beginning of Xbox Live, there have been two tiers: Silver and Gold. The Silver tier has been free and offered some basic capabilities. Over the years, the capabilities for Silver have increased, but not by much. Gold has been a pay-for feature and opens up all of the Xbox Live capabilities. However, based on some information from the Microsoft Store, Xbox Live Gold will soon be free.
The first hint came when Microsoft discontinued the 12 month subscription. This was interpreted by some as a money grab from Microsoft, as the price per month is lowest for the 12 month option. However, we maintained that is was an indication that Xbox Live would go free with the Series X. Microsoft did not confirm nor deny this possibility. The listing for Halo Infinite has potentially added more fuel to our theory.