343: Dropping Split-Screen In Halo 5: Guardians Was A Difficult But Necessary Choice

Halo 5: Guardians

Considered by many to be a staple of the series, 343 Industries has explained its reasoning for dropping the beloved split-screen feature in Halo 5: Guardians via a recent blog post. Taking to Halo Waypoint, the studio noted that the tough but necessary decision had to be made, lest the inclusion of split-screen compromise the overall playing experience.

That’s according to Executive Producer Josh Holmes, who empathized with long-time fans of the shooter franchise, but admitted that the creative team couldn’t shoehorn in the feature without limiting the scale and scope of Guardians.

“The decision to remove split-screen support from Halo 5: Guardians was one of the most difficult ones we’ve ever had to make as a studio. We know that for many of our fans, Halo has meant playing together with friends in the same room. We all have great memories of past Halo split-screen multiplayer matches.

“To move Halo’s gameplay forward and deliver a true next-gen experience, tough choices had to be made,” he added. “Our decision was driven by a desire for scale, fidelity, and focus to ensure that we would deliver the best quality experience possible.”

Over the past few years, the feature itself has flirted in and out of fashion, seemingly fighting for a foothold as online gaming only grows in prominence. That said, many developers have carried the torch for split-screen, with the likes of Rocket League and DICE’s Star Wars Battlefront making room for the couch-friendly mode. In the case of Halo 5: Guardians, split-screen was simply a casualty of the studio’s ambition.

Halo 5: Guardians will deploy exclusively on Xbox One on October 27. In the meantime, tell us, are you disappointed about the lack of split-screen in 343’s upcoming sequel?