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If you're a PC gamer who's been itching to get your hands on a copy of Halo, I have some semi-good news; a brand new PC-only edition of Halo will launch in the spring. However, it'll only be available in Russia. Sorry if I got your hopes up.
Today, in a blog post on halowaypoint.com, developer 343 Industries announced Halo Online. The free-to-play game is the result of a partnership between 343, Saber Interactive, and Innova Systems, and it'll be exclusive to the Russian market.
Right now, Halo Online is gearing up for a closed beta test, but the developer is hoping to launch the title in the spring. However, no release date has been set.
If you're a Halo fan, you probably have a lot of questions. And, unfortunately, many of those questions will be left unanswered at the end of this article. 343 Industries isn't ready to spill the beans on any in-game details just yet. Though, the developer was kind enough to post a tiny F&Q that addressed two critical queries.
Hopefully, this helps:
Q: Does Halo Online represent your future plans for the franchise on PC?
Aside from that, we don't know much. Halo Online will reportedly use a "highly modified version of the Halo 3 engine" that's been specifically built for lower-end PCs. And, this probably goes without saying, but 343 isn't planning to bring this version of Halo to the Xbox One.
This isn't the first time we've seen a developer create a free-to-play edition of a big-name title for an overseas release. Call of Duty: Online is a micro-transaction-funded edition of CoD that's only available in China. And Counter-Strike Online was also tailored for the Asian market.
For the most part, though, these titles don't have the polish of the triple-A versions that we're used to. And that will probably hold true for Halo Online.
Plus, Halo 5: Guardians will supposedly hit shelves before Christmas. So, Halo fans will be able to scratch that itch. Though, Guardians will only be available on the Xbox One.
Sorry, PC gamers. You may want to consider moving to Russia.