Update: During Gamescom, this information was confirmed to be True.
One of the biggest games set to launch this year, Halo Infinite was absent from the Xbox Showcase at Gamescom despite many people assuming it would be there. According to the newest circulation of information, the reason it skipped the event was that it was scheduled to be in another event, the Opening Night Live! event for Gamescom hosted by Geoff Keighley. This would not be a crazy turn of events as Geoff has a track record of getting big-name games as part of his events.
Lending credibility to this is leaked photos of its listing on Microsoft store that appear to have shown a switch to the release date for the game since it will most likely be getting a release date when it is shown at Gamescom. At the time of writing this, it appears that Microsoft has reverted the date to a placeholder 12/31/2021 which means that this was most likely a mistake on their part.
JFYI: this Microsoft Store listing has been live since August 26, 2020, with a placeholder release date. They updated the entire store listing a few hours ago, with the new release date (and new description, screenshots…)
— Aggiornamenti Lumia (@ALumia_Italia) August 25, 2021
The date showcased says that the game will release on December 8, 2021, which would be a Wednesday in the second week of December. Since the ‘holiday’ window usually means somewhere between Thanksgiving and Christmas this date does feel like it could be accurate. Noted Xbox Insider, The Verge Reporter Tom Warren then tweeted out to confirm this date was indeed accurate.
This Halo will be launching in an odd way. The multiplayer for the game will be launching separately as a free-to-play mode on the system, with the Halo Infinite Campaign and said multiplayer releasing on this December 8. The campaign will be launching day one to Game Pass as well so for most gamers they will not have to actually buy it anyway. Both the co-op campaign mode and Forge mode will be launching at different points next year as they were delayed so developer 343 Industries could meet this launch window.
The Opening Night Live! will occur at 2 pm EST Wednesday, August 25. We will keep you informed with any updates.