For longtime fans of Halo, Halo 5: Guardians is both the most anticipated game coming out this year as well as the one that makes them the most nervous. Even though Halo should be a surefire bet, there are some that are not confident in 343’s abilities to deliver after the Halo: The Master Chief Collection online debacle, and due to the fact that the game is making a lot of changes to the established Halo experience.
Past Halo games have used a voting and veto system to determine which map will be played next. In fact, the vast majority of shooters use a similar system. However, Halo 5: Guardians will be nixing this in favor of map rotation, wherein every map will be rotated through, so players aren’t playing the same map repeatedly in a play session.
This map rotation system will have its pros and cons. The benefit of the map rotation system is that players that want a variety of maps will no longer be stuck playing the same map ad nauseam. Ultimately, it will allow the Halo 5 multiplayer component to have more variety in general when compared to its predecessors.
On the downside, this map rotation system means that some maps that aren’t well liked by the community will inevitably be forced upon players. It also means that the most beloved maps won’t be able to be played as much. Yes, some may find that playing Lockout all the time gets boring, but there’s a reason why it’s such a popular map, and why it has been remade multiple times, and that’s because many people would rather play on Lockout than anything else.
Perhaps a better system for multiplayer map selection in Halo 5 could’ve been aped from Call of Duty. Give players two maps to vote from, but don’t allow the same map to be played more than twice in a row. This will ensure some map variety, and it will also keep players from having to slog through the more disliked maps in the game.
Overall, this map rotation system could be a popular move for 343 when it’s all said and done, but it still marks yet another change to the established Halo formula. They’ve already announced that the game is nixing split-screen, despite the fact that split-screen has been a series staple since its inception on the original Xbox, and they are also introducing a new bot-based multiplayer mode. While the bot-based multiplayer Warzone mode may in fact be a change that pushes Halo into some fresh new directions, we’re not entirely convinced that the lack of split-screen is the best move for the series, and the jury is still out on the map rotation system as well.
How do you feel about the new map rotation system in Halo 5? Will you miss the tried and true voting system from past games? Let us know in the comments.
Halo 5: Guardians is scheduled to release October 27th, exclusively for the Xbox One.