With the introduction of the multiplayer mode Arena, Microsoft could bring Halo 5: Guardians into the competitive eSports scene. The four vs. four set up in the Arena’s Breakout mode could have what it takes to attract the attention of professional players.
343 Industries, Microsoft’s games studio, is hoping to bring the popular game franchise of Halo closer to a professional gamer crowd with its multiplayer mode. If the game succeeds in bringing the right players together, we could see big prize tournaments in the future.
Josh Holmes, the creative director at 343 Industries and the executive producer of Halo 5: Guardians, summed it up in an interview with GamesBeat:
“Arena is purpose-built for competitive play. It celebrates everything at the core of Halo multiplayer. We have even starts, a level playing field, [and] a variety of game modes that cater to that taste. It’s built from the ground up for eSports, but it’s there for players of all skill levels.”
Halo games have been sold more than 65 million times since 2001 and have generated more than $4.6 billion in retail sales for Microsoft.
The first test for success?
Recently Gfinity, a gaming company from the United Kingdom that organizes online tournaments for several Xbox and PC titles, announced that it will launch a free weekly Halo 5 cup. It will start on November 1st and will have a prize pool of $150 per cup.
Even though it is not at the caliber of many big, established tournaments, it could offer the first insight into how well the game would do in a competitive eSports environment.
Microsoft also recently introduced Spartan Companies, a new social network for Halo 5: Guardians, that is hosted on the Halo Waypoint platform.
Each Spartan Company can hold up to 100 players who then will have access to private message forums where they can track each other’s multiplayer statistics and form teams with the help of the new information. This could also help bring the right people together for creating interesting matchups, which could result in an entertaining experience for both the players and the viewers.
With an updated emphasis on competitive multiplayer and an eSports-friendly design, Halo 5: Guardians players will benefit from a convenient way to get together and organize.
Competitive eSports pool is growing
It’s nothing new seeing a game trying to establish itself in the eSports competitive gaming community. Some potential new examples could also be Overwatch, a new team-based shooter game by Blizzard, and Guild Wars 2, which recently announced a pro league worth $400,000.
Whatever the future might bring, it will always be exciting to see a new game that could contribute to the growing market of eSports.