The heavily delayed cooperative campaign feature of Halo Infinite is almost here, but 343 Industries wants to run it through some final tests before it goes live. Insider testing for both the highly anticipated four-player co-op as well as mission replays are slated to begin on the week of July 15.
Both Xbox and PC players are being invited for the latest test session, and for co-op, there's cross-play enabled too.
As for why it has taken so long, 343 Industries says implementing co-op play in Halo Infinite was a creative challenge due to its open world nature compared to previous entries:
One of the greatest creative challenges has been in how we support this new, more open experience and the many new questions that raised. How do we set up a shared world state? How do we keep the Fireteam together? How do we determine intent and mission focus? How do we prevent sequence breaking the narrative?
The studio confirmed that all progress made within co-op will be carried over when players go back to their own solo campaigns, from missions and collectibles to found equipment and upgrades. "Gone are the days of playing someone else's game while earning no progress", added 343.
However, only campaign missions completed by all members of a Fireteam will be marked as completed in the session, making sure players aren't jumping into missions out of order. When starting up a co-op session, players will be asked to pick a save slot to use for that sitting, which brings over the Master Chief of that save. And yes, everyone will be playing as Master Chief.
While players can do multiple activities at the same time in Zeta Halo, an "Area-Of-Operations" limit has been set to make sure nobody strays too far from the group. The radius is set at 1,000 feet before the game respawns the Spartan and reels them back.
Co-op sessions are hosted on dedicated servers, letting Xbox One, Xbox Series X|S, Microsoft Store, Steam, and Xbox Cloud Gaming players join together for four-player campaign runs.
As for mission replays, players in the preview will be able to select a completed objective and choose Replay from the available options. This opens difficulty and Skulls selection before teleporting the player and any co-op partners to the location for another go.
All that's required to be eligible for an invite is to own the Halo Infinite Campaign (via a purchase or Xbox Game Pass) and being a Halo Insider. Head here to sign up for the program. Keep in mind that progress made in the flight will not carry over to the main game when co-op officially launches later this year.