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The Halo Infinite team has seen a number of notable faces leave the team over the past few months. May saw head of design Jerry Hook leave 343 Industries, and art director Nicolas Bouvier parted ways with the studio in July. In perhaps the most surprising departure, studio founder Bonnie Ross is also stepping down.
Ross made this known on her Twitter account, releases a statement explaining why she is leaving. “Although I had hoped to stay with Halo until we release the winter update,” she wrote, “I am announcing that I will be leaving 343 Industries to attend to a family issue.” It is an understandable reason to step away, and it creates a completely different atmosphere around this particular departure. Medical problems among family members are no joke. Ross’ statement also contains words of gratitude: she thanks the Halo community, which she has been a part of for 15 years, and promises that the franchise’s “future is bright.”
Specifically, Halo Infinite’s aforementioned winter update is next on the list. As revealed during the September update video, the winter update will arrive on November 8th, and its seasonal content will run through March 7th. Season 3: Echoes Within starts the next day and continues until June 27. There’s plenty in the works for the winter update: the Forge beta, a free battle pass, a new mode called Covert One Flag, and a few new maps will all make their debut.
The winter update will also bring the long-awaited ability to replay story missions – and to play them in network co-op. Unfortunately, the game’s co-op plans have been scrapped, but while this mode won’t be officially supported, fans have discovered a bug that still lets them try it out. Considering the dropouts and community unrest they’ve caused, a co-op failure is a small win for the fans.