A few qords from Dan Ayoub, Studio Head of Strategy Games at 343 Industries
This is a repost from halo Waypoint:
Hi everyone –
Last June we invited our fan community to jump in and get hands-on with a slice of Halo Wars 2 with our first multiplayer beta. As discussed, we received a tremendous amount of valuable feedback on both the technical and gameplay side that has helped the team continue to refine and improve the overall Halo Wars 2 experience as we march towards launch on Feb. 21, 2017.
As we enter the final stretch of development I’m happy to announce one more opportunity to get hands-on with Halo Wars 2 and ask for your participation in one final large-scale multiplayer beta. This time around the focus will be exclusively on our brand-new card-based game mode, Blitz, and it’ll be available on both Windows 10 PC and Xbox One beginning Jan. 20, 2017.
HFFL: I for one am excite!. Are you?
HFFL: I’m writing up an article going over the finer points of the video above. Look for that shortly!
Blitz is our new twist on RTS gameplay that combines the deck building and split-second decision making of card-based strategy play with explosive tactical combat in the Halo universe. Your card deck, along with your faction leader, are your greatest resources as you assemble a collection of air, ground and infantry units and seek to out-think and out-maneuver your opponents on the battlefield. We’re really excited about this new mode and look forward to unleashing Blitz upon the community to play and run through its paces prior to launch.
The Halo Wars 2 Blitz Beta will officially begin on Friday, Jan. 20 and is slated to run through Jan. 30, 2017. The Blitz Beta will take place on the map “Proving Grounds,” and will offer 1v1, 2v2, and 3v3 gameplay via matchmaking on both Windows 10 PC and Xbox One. One thing we’re particularly excited about is the fact that all of the Faction Leaders and Blitz cards that will be available in the full game at launch on Feb. 21 will be included and available to play and experiment with during the beta, offering wide breadth of strategic and gameplay options. You’ll also find a series of daily and weekly challenges to participate in as we work to stress test those systems.
HFFL: I had to highlight that part above! Man, I’m glad to see we’ll have MORE options during this second BETA. I want to see who all the faction leasers are AND how they play differently.
While it’s important to note that none of the cards or progress you earn within the Blitz Beta will carry over to the retail game (though the experience and strategies you develop certainly will!), we do have two special rewards that will apply to the full game. As a special incentive and thank you, everyone who participates in the Blitz Beta will be awarded up to two free in-game Blitz card packs in the final retail version when it ships in February. You’ll earn one card pack just for logging into the Blitz Beta and another one after you’ve completed your first match. So jump in and get a leg up on the competition before launch in February, help us test aspects of the game AND earn yourself two bonus card packs for Halo Wars 2 come launch!
HFFL: Okay, that’s cool. Likely these will amount to REQ packs and eventually will mean nothing. However, I’m happy for ANYTHING free!
I’m personally really excited to share this next big milestone with our fan community and look forward to your feedback, which we’ll be watching closely in the Halo Waypoint forums. The team will be monitoring all of our backend and under-the-hood systems but we also look forward to your thoughts around gameplay, balance and the Blitz “meta” game.
Blitz is certainly one of the more exciting aspects of Halo Wars 2 but we’ve got plenty more goodness coming in the full game on Feb. 21 including a robust campaign (single and co-op), additional MP modes (Domination, Strongholds and Deathmatch) and Blitz Firefight.
On behalf of the entire team, thanks for your support and excitement around Halo Wars 2 thus far. We can’t wait to share Blitz mode with you starting Jan. 20!
See you online,
Dan Ayoub, Studio Head of Strategy Games at 343 Industries
HFFL: Thank YOU sir! Man, I am HIGHLY anticipating and looking forward to this game! The BETA will be yet another taste of the goodness to come!!!