Halo Infinite has dropped in just in time for the holidays. The multiplayer beta surprise-launched on November 15, the 20th anniversary of Xbox and Halo: Combat Evolved, and it was a hit right away, soaring to the top of the charts on Steam, Twitch, and presumably Xbox. However, the battle pass progression system has become the focus of the conversation surrounding the game. Despite its silky smooth mechanics and fun maps and modes, players are finding it hard to level up their Halo Infinite Season 1 battle pass. That’s because it works a bit differently than battle passes commonly do in other games. Here’s what you need to know about how to level up your battle pass in Halo Infinite.
How the battle pass works
All players have access to a limited version of the battle pass by default. Certain rewards are available to anyone by leveling it up, but purchasing the battle pass (available for 1,000 Credits or about $10) will allow you to unlock all available rewards and help you to rank up more quickly, both by granting XP boosts and by giving you an additional weekly challenge slot.
It’s important to know the battle pass never expires. New ones will be released in the future, and you’ll be limited to only working on progressing one at a time, but you’ll never find yourself locked out of a battle pass and its rewards that you paid for. (The exception is the limited-time event battle passes, which are available for free; we’ll get into those later.)
The battle pass consists of 100 total tiers, each with its own rewards. Reaching each tier requires earning 1,000 XP, but unlike what you might expect, that XP is not directly tied to completing matches. Instead, XP is awarded by completing either daily or weekly challenges.
Daily challenges center around completing matches and are essentially your route to leveling up the XP by just playing the game. As you complete daily challenges during a single day, you’ll earn additional, slightly more involved (and more rewarding) challenges. Initially, all you have to do is complete a match, which includes those against bots. But as you complete more of these, you’ll then have to take part in PvP matches, and after those, you’ll have to begin winning matches. Each day, your progress is reset and you’ll return to the first tier of challenges to just play any match, beginning this process anew. XP rewards scale up as you get into the higher-tier daily challenges.
Weekly challenges are the larger source of XP, giving you up to four different objectives at a time to complete. As with daily challenges, completing them will then provide you with new ones, either until you’ve completed all available ones for the week or the weekly reset takes place on Tuesdays. Subsequent challenges increase in terms of their XP rewards.
The weekly challenges are more specific than dailies, calling for you to play certain game modes or complete objectives in matches (such as getting kills with a particular weapon, or the ball in Oddball). Due to the low number of playlists currently available with the launch of Infinite’s multiplayer beta, you are essentially at the mercy of matchmaking if you are presented with a challenge that requires a specific game type. At least for now, you’ll just have to keep playing and hope to be given the matches you need. Your only recourse if you come up against a challenge that you either can’t or don’t want to complete is to use a challenge swap (more on those in a moment).
Completing weekly challenges is going to be your primary way for ranking up the battle pass, but there’s an additional reason to do as many of them as you can. Each week, you have an Ultimate challenge: complete every weekly challenge. Doing that will earn you the corresponding Ultimate reward. For the first week, that’s a special visor color called Sigil.
How challenge swaps work
If you find yourself faced with a weekly challenge (dailies aren’t eligible) you want to avoid, you can opt to use a challenge swap. This will replace the objective with a random new one, which can spare you from having to do something you deem too difficult or that you just don’t want to do. Challenge swaps are periodically given out as part of the battle pass itself–every few tiers gives one for free to all players, even those who have not purchased the battle pass.
How XP boosts work
One of the big complaints about the battle pass and progression from players so far is that it feels very slow–it’s not uncommon for it to take 6-8 hours to go up just a few levels. Progress can be sped up with the use of XP boosts, which are also available as you level up the battle pass (though, unlike challenge swaps, they are limited to the paid version of the rewards track). They can also be purchased with real-world money or obtained from promotions outside of the game itself.
Activating an XP boost will cause you to earn double XP from any daily or weekly challenges you complete for 30 minutes. However, it’s critical to be aware that the timer begins as soon as you activate the boost, and it does not stop–even if you’re not playing a match. Developer 343 has said it’s exploring either modifying the amount of time an XP boost is active for or tying its timer to gameplay time, but for now, you’ll need to be mindful of when you use them.
How XP grants and level-ups work
There’s an even faster way to level up than XP boosts. XP grants do just that–they give you 250 XP when they’re cashed in, giving you immediate progress toward your next rank. Alternatively, you can purchase a level up for 200 credits (about $2), giving you an immediate rank-up.
Halo Infinite will occasionally host special events with their own rewards, separate from the current battle pass. The first of these, Fracture: Tenrai, will begin on November 23 and offer be available for free to all players, but the critical difference is that the event will only be active for a limited time, meaning you won’t have forever to unlock its rewards. These events will run from one to multiple weeks, and in the case of Tenrai, it will return multiple times during Season 1 (which runs from now until May 2022) to give you more chances to earn everything.
Why are people hating on the battle pass?
Perhaps the biggest complaint about Halo Infinite right now is its battle pass and progression, with many feeling it’s just too slow and not rewarding enough. These same complaints were leveled at the game following the earlier tech tests, prompting 343 to say the following in September: “While we understand the community’s feedback around wanting a steady drip of match XP and more ways to earn XP for the Battle Pass, we are optimistic that the system available at launch will give players adequate means of continually having something to accomplish and a means to progress. Looking further ahead beyond launch, we expect these systems to evolve in direct partnership with player feedback.” It again reiterated just after the beta’s launch that battle pass progression is something 343 is looking at.
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