What started out as a simple map editor has evolved into a full-fledged gaming engine.
When Forge first debuted in Halo 3, it was a simple tool for rearranging boxes in existing levels. According to a recent leak, Halo Infinite's version of the iconic editor will have incredibly strong scripting tools, effectively turning the once-simple map editor into a game-making tool in and of itself.
A series of tweets from the Halo Infinite Leaks and News Twitter account (via Dexerto) revealed node editing tools that seem more like Unreal Engine blueprints than anything we've seen from Forge before.
Halo has always had decent custom game capabilities, but what's on display here might effectively allow you to make entirely new games.
There are nodes for controlling players, objects, vehicles, and things, as well as timers for tracking events, teleports, and mode, with a dropdown menu providing even more choices for managing win statuses and initiating events based on certain criteria. In a nutshell, it's a comprehensive scripting framework with limitless potential for new Halo experiences.
Previous custom games must be modest variations on existing game modes, but Infinite looks like it may free up space for the kind of crazy player-made games we see in games like Garry's Mod—in fact, a map we've seen in leaks looks very identical to that game's enormous flat sandbox, Flatgrass.
While Forge isn't opening Infinite to third-party assets, I'm excited to see the community push the boundaries of Halo's possibility universe. It's possible that players will create the Battle Royale mode that 343 Industries has stated it will not be bringing to Halo Infinite, despite what the Halo multiplayer voice states.
PC Gamer has reached out to Microsoft for comment, and we'll keep you updated as soon as we hear back. Unfortunately, we won't be able to use these tools for some time: Both Forge and the co-op campaign were infamously delayed by Infinite until mid-2022. If Forge promises to be as stable as this, I'll gladly wait for 343 to finish making it the best it can be. However, we'll have to wait a long time to see how far modders can push Infinite's toolkit.