A recent update from the Halo Infinite development team revealed a major change. A new system was unveiled that will fundamentally alter the way players use customization.
A post on the Halo Waypoint blog details the new system for character, weapon and vehicle skins, referred to as "coatings." In the coating system, a seven-layer shader will give players access to a set of artist-authored colors, materials or patterns that can then be applied to armor, weapons and vehicles. Coloration will now be tied to these coatings, replacing the previous games' options for primary and secondary colors. The announcement also introduced the Red Shift armor coating, which will be available to GameStop customers who purchase any Halo or Xbox merchandise.
The system will be similar to the shaders used in the Destiny series, where they can be used to alter the color and texture of equipped armor.
The Waypoint post acknowledged the dissatisfaction that this change could create among players. "While we understand that many players are fond of the previous color system," read the post, "we’re very excited about the breadth and scope of armor, weapon, and vehicle customization options that will be available in Halo Infinite because of the coating system."
This attempt to nip the controversy in the bud did little to stop a flurry of frustration that ensued from the Halo community. A thread on Reddit's Halo community calling the change "absolutely unacceptable" quickly ballooned to over 11,000 upvotes and upwards of 17,000 comments as of this writing.
Some fans have even implied they'd be up for a boycott to put pressure on the developers to reinstate the old system, with one Reddit post instructing fans to not purchase Infinite if coatings are still in the game upon launch.
Players were first introduced to the Monarch armor coating on October 8. Halo Infinite is slated for release in 2021 after a delay due to the COVID pandemic.
Halo Infinite's release might involve a staggered launch for campaign and multiplayer. Find out more here.