After a week of complaints due to minimal XP gains, 343 Studios finally listened to the players.
Halo Infinite multiplayer is now available in open beta since November 15th, 2021. The first season entitled Heroes of Reach introduced new and returning Halo fans to the Battle Pass, which they can level up to unlock cosmetic rewards.
The good news is that everyone can play the game for free, and the standard Battle Pass offers free rewards in addition to the Premium—or paid—ones. And the bad news? You can only earn XP after completing a challenge. Your wins, kills, captures, and assists do not matter unless they are part of a challenge.
What are Challenges in Halo Infinite?
Halo Infinite multiplayer has two types of challenges, daily and weekly. There is only one daily challenge that resets every 24 hours. On the other hand, you can complete up to three active weekly challenges at a time—four if you have the Premium Battle Pass.
Now, that may seem like a lot of opportunities for players to earn XP. Although certain challenges can be unlocked by simply playing the game (complete a match, kill x number of enemies, etc.), some challenges have very specific requirements. These requirements may even force a player to deviate from their preferred playstyle just to complete the challenge.
Here are a few examples. If your active weekly challenge is Kill Enemy Spartans Attacking a Friendly Zone in PvP, you have to keep queuing in any of the four playlists until you end up in a Total Control game. There is also a challenge that requires you to Kill an Enemy Spartan with the Heatwave in PvP. The Heatwave can only be acquired from random weapon racks around the map. That means most players will be competing just to find the weapon, grab it, and use it to kill an enemy. What if you don’t want to use the Heatwave but you need to complete the challenge to get 200XP? Tough luck, Spartan.
How to Swap Challenges
There are a total of 20 weekly challenges per week. The active ones do not rotate, so whatever three (or four) you got at the start of the reset will stay active until you complete—or swap—them.
343 Studios introduced “Challenge Swap” items that can be used to switch one active weekly challenge with another. This is the main solution for players who want to adjust their active weekly challenges so they can complete them together, or at least as quickly as possible. However, swapping an active challenge doesn’t mean that you replace it with one from your “upcoming challenges” list. Instead, you will get a new one entirely.
If you have a Challenge Swap, a double-arrow icon will appear to the left of your active Weekly Challenges. Just remember that once you use a swap, it can never be reversed.
Challenge Swaps let you redistribute your active weekly challenges so you can complete them in as few runs as possible. The catch is that these Challenge Swaps can only be acquired from the Battle Pass. Now there’s a dilemma—you need XP to get the things you need to earn more XP faster. That is why many players voiced the same concerns to the developers. “Let us have more ways to earn XP faster“.
What is the Battle Pass Progression Update?
343 Studios released a huge update on November 19th. Here are some of the main points:
- Added “Play 1 Game” Challenge so players will always have at least one quick way of earning XP when they start a session.
- Made some changes to the Weekly Challenges. A few of adjusted for easier completion, while the worst ones were removed entirely.
- XP Boost duration is now doubled. Players who spent money on these items will now enjoy double XP gains for 1 hour instead of 30 minutes.
- The first Weekly Ultimate Reward will be given for free. As long as you logged in sometime between November 23-30, you will get the Sigil Mark VII Visor. Good news for those players who spent dozens of hours in the first week after launch just to complete weekly challenges. Your efforts were not in vain!
To summarize the changes, players can now earn 50XP for simply playing one match a day. The weekly challenges will still rotate randomly, so you better pray to the RNG gods that the three active ones you get can be completed naturally in 1-2 matches. Otherwise, you might have to log in a few extra hours or spend a Challenge Swap. Those who bought the Premium Battle Pass will also get one extra active weekly challenge slot. That’s an extra 200XP—that is, if you can complete it ASAP to start the next weekly challenge.
Other Ways to Earn XP Fast
Currently, there is no guaranteed XP after every match unless you complete a challenge. So even if you played 10 straight games in CTF, Slayer, and Total Control, your Battle Pass won’t progress if the active weekly challenge is Complete an Oddball match. Is this a deliberate tactic for players to buy XP Boosters instead of purely grinding it out? Maybe. Welcome to the world of Free-to-Play games.
Here’s a tip—any challenge that needs to be completed “in a matchmade game” can still progress in Bot Bootcamp mode. That means you can grind out 5 sidekick pistol kills against bots instead of actual human players. At least it’s better than forcing yourself to use a pistol in other modes while the enemy team uses whatever weapons they want.
However, Bot Bootcamp matches do not count as PvP, so you cannot play them to complete the “Win any PvP matches” challenge. Oh, and do not waste your time farming for XP in Custom Games. As of now, you will never earn Battle Pass progression there.
What’s Next for Halo Infinite Multiplayer?
343 Studios promised to monitor the effects of their latest update in the following days. For those who really enjoy the game, keep your fingers crossed for another massive update in Battle Pass progression. Hopefully the developers will additional XP rewards based on player performance or match results. It’s true that the Battle Pass is purely optional and you can still enjoy Halo Infinite while ignoring the challenges. But it never hurts to add a small bump to passive XP gains.
Halo Infinite is now available for Windows PC, Xbox One, and Xbox Series X/S. The open beta multiplayer will end on December 8th, 2021, the same day that the Campaign will be released. Until then, players should expect several updates in gameplay and performance. If you’re using an AMD graphics card and you’re having trouble with the game, check out our guide.