Microsoft has officially released Halo Infinite multiplayer mode as part of its 20th Anniversary stream for Xbox, news which will come as a surprise to many (although it was rumoured to be coming after information had leaked online).
According to Microsoft, "to celebrate the 20th Anniversary of the franchise, Halo Infinite’s multiplayer beta is available now and free to play on Xbox and PC. Begin your personal Spartan Journey today with Season 1, 'Heroes of Reach,' and stay tuned for upcoming, limited-time in-game events and exclusive rewards."
The game was originally expected to release along with the single-player campaign on December 8th, so it's surprising to see the multiplayer drop a little under a month early. The first season, Heroes of Reach, will run until May next year, for an extended duration that 343 Industries state will "ensure Season 2 meets our high quality bar and so we can finish development for Season 2 in a healthy and sustainable way for our team."
If you log into the game during the first week, you'll even get some free anniversary cosmetics to show off. There'll be more events getting underway next year too, with 343 stating that "In January, after all of you have had a chance to play Halo Infinite’s expansive and adventure-filled campaign starting December 8, and all of us on the Halo Infinite team have had an opportunity to recharge our energy shields over the holidays, we will have more details to share about the season 1 event calendar as well as our season 2, campaign co-op, and Forge release plans," Halo Infinite head of creative Joseph Staten said.
You can grab Halo Infinite multiplayer right now on Steam, but you may have to wait, as there are over 50,000 players right now, with slow download speeds and busy servers expected.