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Microsoft has announced that Halo 5: Guardians has officially gone gold for the Xbox One. That means that development is finished and the gold master disc is being sent off to the plant so that the game will arrive on store shelves starting October 27th.
The news was posted over on the official Xbox website where 343 Industries studio head Josh Holmes let gamers know that not only has the game gone gold but that they have a big multiplayer patch planned for the day-one release.
According to the post there will be a pre-launch patch for the multiplayer to bring the Arena multiplayer up to par, along with new content for the 12-vs-12 Warzone mode. They advise users to set the power setting in the Xbox One to “Instant On” to automatically start the download of the pre-launch patch. That's applicable for those who purchase Halo 5 digitally. Doing so will make the game ripe and ready on October 27th when it officially releases on Microsoft's home console.
Now, for those of you who decide to go out and buy a copy of the game from a brick and mortar retailer, Microsoft and 343 Industries still have a solution for you. While pre-downloading is only available to digital customers, you can automatically get the multiplayer patch with the physical copy of the game once it begins installing on the Xbox One. Unfortunately, you won't be able to play online until the patch finishes, so you will be held hostage to the single player campaign (with no split-screen, I might add) and the connection speed offered by your ISP, up until the game finishes the latest patches.
The post further states that things are just getting started for Halo 5 and the team has a lot planned for the future of the title, including 18 free multiplayer maps due for release and a competitive e-sports tournament planned to take place by the year's end. Microsoft is also funding that tournament to help put Halo back into the center of the competitive FPS scene that's been climbing on an incline in popularity as of late, mostly thanks to the strong Counter-Strike: Global Offensive community and the continued presence of Activision's Call of Duty.
Halo 5 is the Xbox One's most anticipated exclusive of the year, according to Nielsen's latest media research report. The game isn't quite up to par with Activision's Call of Duty: Black Ops 3, Fallout 4 or Assassin's Creed: Syndicate according to the report, but it's still the Xbox One's supposed must-own title of the holiday season.
The game will feature a campaign mode that's twice as long as Halo 4, and it will feature two different lead character perspectives accompanied by each character's teammates. This kind of approach to storytelling and campaign construction has enabled 343 Industries to make the game a four-player cooperative title. Unfortunately, this comes at the cost of split-screen play, which is not included in this outing of Halo.
Nevertheless, with the game having gone gold that means that there will be no more delays, no more setbacks and nothing standing in the way of gamers getting their hands on the newest Halo title starring Master Chief when October 27th rolls around.