Halo Infinite's multiplayer was released early yesterday and Xbox Game Studios' decision to launch it on Steam alongside the Xbox PC App seems to have worked out very well already.
As per SteamDB, the game has seen a huge influx of players within the first day since its release. Across the period, Halo Infinite's peak number of concurrent players eclipsed the quarter of a million mark at 272,856 – instantly ranking it at 22nd in the platform's all-time peak player count rankings.
This places the game above the likes of Payday 2 and Rust, and just below Skyrim and Destiny 2. Given the game reached this peak on a Monday, it's entirely possible it will climb those charts this week.
Although statistics surrounding the Steam version of Halo Infinite are impressive enough on their own, the game's release on the platform was made all the more significant as a number of other platforms running the game experienced launch issues in the hour after announcement.
Many of the players attempting to access the game on the Xbox PC App yesterday experienced problems where the game wouldn't appear to launch properly. This seemed to be down to an issue with an update not appearing for download. While the Xbox PC App had a preinstall size of 200MB, the Steam version instead had a file size of around 26GB and was allowing players to run the game as intended.
Issues with the Xbox PC App version of the game have since been resolved, though whether or not the problems caused a further influx of players to opt to jump into the Steam version of the game is still unclear.
While Halo Infinite's multiplayer seems to be experiencing a hugely successful launch, there are a number of factors that have likely contributed to this. First and foremost, Halo Infinite's multiplayer is free, meaning that fans have nothing to lose by joining the action.
Even before yesterday's release though, anticipation was high. Many players have been waiting to play Halo Infinite for months following the game's delay last year. While delays can sometimes indicate bad omens for a game at launch, many fans were excited to jump into Infinite's multiplayer following positive reports from previously ran technical previews of the game.
With Infinite already amassing a huge number of players since its release, it will be interesting to see how the game performs across the weekend. This is usually a time where games experience higher volumes of players and Microsoft will surely be hoping that Infinite continues to push higher in charts across a number of platforms.
Jared Moore is a freelance writer for IGN. You can follow him on Twitter.