Halo dev studio “starting from scratch” with new game Tatanka, says insider
343 Interactive is working on a new game codenamed ‘Tatanka’ amid massive turnover at the game studio, hitting the reset button after Halo Infinite.
On January 18, Mircosoft laid off 10,000 staff, as Jason Schreier of Bloomberg first reported. Many of the job cuts impacted 343 Interactive, the lead design team of Halo Infinite. The insider confirmed layoffs hit Halo Infinite’s campaign team hard.
Former Halo pro-Ninja labeled 343 as “delusional” for not launching the title with a battle royale mode. TimTheTatman agreed, arguing the developers could have avoided disaster by implementing a battle royale mode.
Both content creators may get their wish, as, in a follow-up report from Schreier, 343 is “starting from scratch” and shifting the development team’s focus to multiplayer content.
343 Industries hits the reset button on Halo franchise
On January 31, Schreier reported that 343 Industries will still make Halo games, “But with mass layoffs (at least 95 people), an engine pivot to Unreal, and focus only on multiplayer for the near future, 343 is hitting the reset button.”
In his story, the insider talked about 343 moving to Unreal Engine in late 2022 after previous studio head Bonnie Ross departed. The switch to Unreal Engine reportedly prompted the start of a new game codenamed Tatanka.
“That project, which 343 is developing alongside the Austin, Texas-based game studio Certain Affinity, started off as a battle royale but may evolve in different directions.”
The insider had bad news for Halo Infinite fans hoping for more story-driven content.
“Developers were making prototypes in the Unreal Engine and pitching ideas for new Halo games rather than working on new missions for Halo Infinite.”
Halo Infinite fans have criticized 343’s “embarrassing” lack of post-launch content and disappointing roadmap. Schreier reported, “the current plan for 343 is to support “a robust live offering” for Halo Infinite and its Forge level creator.”
It will be interesting to see the community reaction to 343 moving away from single-player content in favor of a potential battle royale title.