The prize pool for one of console gaming’s most storied franchises just doubled.
The finals for the first season of the Halo Championship Series (HCS), the competition circuit created around the Halo: Master Chief Collection by developer 343 Industries, will now feature a $100,000 prize pool.
“One of the most important pieces of feedback we’ve heard is that all players—from amateur to top teams—simply want more opportunities to compete and earn more money in the HCS,” franchise media director Che Chou says, “We greatly understand, not only the importance of regulated prize pools that appropriately reward top competitors, but also the growth of the HCS year over year.”
Of course, increasing the money available at the season 1 finals, to be played at PAX East Mar. 6-8, hardly accomplishes one of those goals—creating more opportunities for teams to earn. But Chou also adds that a season 2 roadmap is coming, with the Iron Gaming event on April 17-19 as the kickoff, and that it’s “going to be awesome.”
In addition, the company has updated rules regarding matches interrupted by crashes or other issues, which will be implemented at the upcoming Gamers for Giving event as well as the season 1 finals.
The rules, created in conjunction with a council of HCS veteran players, dictate that a match must be restarted if a certain benchmark in the score is reached and that the current score will be carried over, creating an aggregate score for the two games. For example, a Team Slayer match that’s interrupted with a 37-29 score will restart with the score at 37-29.
Remade matches will be played with a full time limit, though whether a game should be stopped if a team reaches an aggregate score of 50 kills in Team Slayer, for example, is unclear. What will be clear is the score during the “all-new live stream experience,” as 343 is updating on-stream graphics to easily display aggregate scores during official broadcasts on Twitch.tv/Halo.
That rule is much needed considering the state of the Halo: Master Chief Collection, an unstable and much-maligned mess at times in multiplayer play. While the graphical updates to classic title Halo 2 provide an awesome competitive experience, the platform underneath is prone to falling out from underneath players.
The rules should help stave off any potential issues that ruin the competitive integrity of an event, but it’s not an ideal situation for players of the storied franchise. Still, 343 Industries seems committed to improving the esports experience for fans of the franchise, and that’s a good sign with Halo 5 on the horizon.
Photo via Halowaypoint