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After last week’s Halo: The Master Chief Collection for PC announcement, Microsoft has released more details on the long-awaited classic. Though the beloved game series is launching on PC, Microsoft will not be releasing it as part of Xbox Play Anywhere, according to 343 Industries studio head Bonnie Ross at South by Southwest. But, not all is lost when it comes to enjoying your favorite Halo games on PC, as a new beta program has just been announced. Keep reading for more details.

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Halo: The Master Chief Collection won’t be Xbox Play Anywhere

This is probably the only sad news of the bit, and hopefully, the sad news won’t last long. As reported by Kotaku, 343 Industries showcased more content of Halo: The Master Chief Collection at South by Southwest over the past few days.

If you’ve already purchased the game on console, you’re going to have to buy it again on PC. It’s that simple. “While MCC shipped before the XPA Play Anywhere, we are exploring ways to make sure that we show our appreciation and recognition for the support we’ve had from the amazing fans on MCC and we’ll have more to announce as we get closer to launch,” said Ross at SXSW.

There are 73 games in the Xbox Play Anywhere library, among which some of my favorites are found (hey there Forza). There are a plethora of third-party titles in Xbox Play Anywhere, but every Xbox Game Studios’ game released since Play Anywhere was announced has been included in the service. This will be a first, but there could be a reason for that.

Halo: The Master Chief Collection houses six different games built on eight different engines. Porting this series won’t be like a normal game, and though cross-platform gameplay (or purchase sharing) won’t be available at launch, Brian Jarrard, 343 Industries community director, said that the feature is not completely off the table for the future.

Release timeline updated, beta program announced

Like we previously reported, Halo: Reach will be the first game available from the collection as part of its staggered release. However, Jarrard announced that there will be a new beta program called “Halo Insider.” This program will allow players to sign up and get early access to The Master Chief Collection on PC. Signups should open soon, as Jarrard went on record to say “That’s going to be happening I think sooner than people realize,” when asked about when the games would release.

Though there is no specific date for either the beta program or full release of Halo: Reach, we can hope it happens sometime in the next few months. Microsoft and 343 Industries currently has quite a bit of buzz around The Master Chief Collection, and it would be best to cash in on that as soon as possible, as long as the game is finished in time.

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