Halo Wars 2‘s second beta test begins in early 2017, Microsoft and 343 Industries have announced via a post on Xbox Wire. No specific start date has been confirmed, but considering the full game is due to launch in February next year, you can probably expect it to commence at some point in January.
Revealed in a surprise announcement at last year’s E3, Halo Wars 2 is a direct sequel to the original released on the Xbox 360, and is being co-developed by Halo series wardens 343 Industries and veteran RTS developer Creative Assembly.
According to 343’s head of strategy games Dan Ayoub, the development team received a huge amount of helpful feedback from the first beta held back in June, and is already hard at work making changes to portions of the experience that received criticism.
Probably the biggest criticism we heard about the beta was issues with connectivity, de-synchs, etc. I’m happy to say that, thanks to you, we’ve already addressed these issues in the final game.
There are a significant number of individual changes and adjustments being made, including unit tuning, game mode pacing, UI improvements, stability, and flow improvements based on the data we received from the beta. At a high level, there are five main areas of focus that we’ll be adjusting, in addition to the general improvements listed above:
- Leader Abilities
- Resources and Energy
Ayoub goes into far greater detail on the changes being made over on the blog post (there’s too much to list it all here), so if you’re interested, you can head over there by clicking here.
Halo Wars 2 launches for Xbox One and Windows 10 on February 21, 2017. If you’re headed to Gamescom next week, Ayoub says it will be present there and at PAX West, but may not have the improvements listed above:
They’ll be more upcoming chances to play Halo Wars 2 at events like gamescom, PAX West, and a few more events around the globe. Please note that the changes I outline here are ongoing work streams, and you won’t necessarily see them at these events, but they’ll be present in the final game. Also, keep in mind that we’ll be having another Beta coming in early 2017 that will be on BOTH Windows 10 and Xbox One!