Speaking specifically about the launch now that Halo Infinite is gone, Phil Spencer cemented the fact that the strategy doesn’t change just because there is no big new first-party game releasing alongside the console.
When asked about the launch strategy and if it changes due to Halo Infinite being there on day one, Spencer said “It doesn’t. I’d say the positive for us both through the May showcase and the July showcase has been the rise of importance in Game Pass. As we go out and talk to our customers, it’s becoming a real decision maker for those both on our platform and people that are evaluating the Xbox Series X as a console for them. Our investment in the portfolio is strong and we’ve got some more announcements to come about things that are coming to Game Pass.”
Speaking specifically about Halo Infinite, Spencer said that the decision to delay the game came about 24 hours before the decision was made public. He said that internally, Bonnie Ross (Head of 343) and Matt Booty (Head of Xbox Game Studios) discussed splitting the game up to release certain portions on day one, but ultimately he felt that this was a bad idea.
He didn’t comment on whether feedback from gamers after the Halo Infinite gameplay reveal trailer played a part in the delay, but leaned into the fact that the date that they needed to hit wasn’t going to be possible without putting unfair expectations on the team that are working on the game.