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Set to appear in an update going live later in May for Halo 5: Guardians, the Infection maps will feature some brand new ways for players to get their competitive game on in 343 Industries' first-person shooter. Two members from 343 talked about how the Infected maps came about for Halo 5 and what gamers can expect.
In an interview with Game Informer, community manager John Junyszek explained that during 343 Industries hack-a-thon – a sort of free-for-all project that lasts for a week where the developers come up with their own ideas – he came up with the idea to change around some of the multiplayer map content to suit the PvP Infection mode for Halo 5, saying...
For the dev maps we “infected,” it was actually my hack-a-thon project that I pretty much just did on the side, and I developed certain rooms with longer hallways, put in cover for zombies to be able rush down those longer hallways and I tried to change up the layout as much as I could and make it suited for Infection.
Gamers will be able to experience what these “infected” maps will be like when the update goes live later in the month. Junyszek altering the maps to fit the Infection mode should prove to be exciting for Halo 5 fans. He tweaked the starting weapons, added cages to some maps and lengthened the hallways in other maps, as well as made the alpha infected partially invisible to really keep players on their toes. All of this was accomplished simply using the Forge mode.
For those who don't know what the Infection mode is all about, basically two teams are vying to win. Except it starts out in asymmetrical fashion, where there will be one “infected” who will attempt to turn the non-infected players into zombies and grow their ranks. It's pretty much identical to Timesplitters' Virus mode, where it would start with one player having the virus and they would attempt to infect the other 15 players.
The Infected mode originally came onto the scene back in Halo 3 and has been evolving over time as a game type.
343 Industries has been using their hack-a-thons to help foster growth and originality within the development studio to foster new ideas and help push Halo in exciting directions. Multiplayer engineer Geoff Landskov explained to Game Informer...
We basically had a full week to do whatever project we wanted, so we got a lot of really good things out that, one of them being the new Infection maps.
According to Junyszek, though, he wasn't actually officially participating in 343's hack-a-thon. He was actually working on the new Infection maps as a part time thing on his own time... it just so happened to be around the same time that the hack-a-thon was taking place.
It's kind of cool to find that some of the new content due for release in Halo 5 was fostered from the developers just having fun as opposed to them being mandated to churn out x amount of content under y criteria with z deadline.
Whether or not these new Infection maps will actually turn out to be fun is a whole other story, but gamers will be able to get a firsthand taste of these new competitive maps for Halo 5 when the Memories of Reach update goes live later this month.