Halo Infinite season 3 is around the corner, and it’s poised to revitalize the multiplayer shooter. Season 3, formally titled “Echoes Within,” not only adds new maps and modes but also sees the first significant changes to the game’s sandbox (no, nerfing the mangler doesn’t count). Here’s what to expect, including when Halo Infinite season 3 comes out in your time zone.
What time does Halo Infinite season 3 launch?
Halo Infinite season 3 kicks off on Tuesday, March 7, 2023. Developer 343 Industries hasn’t yet specified the exact start time, but historically, Halo Infinite updates roll out at 10:00 a.m. PST. Here’s when Halo Infinite season 3 should go live in your local time zone:
- 11 a.m PST for the west coast of North America
- 2 p.m. EST for the east coast of North America
- 8 p.m. CET for western Europe/Paris
- 7 p.m. GMT for the U.K.
- 4 a.m. JST on March 8 for Tokyo
Echoes Within will run through June 27th, though note that a calendar invite spotted on the Halo Discord pegs an end date of June 20th. Either way, season 3 is far shorter than the first two seasons, which ran six and 10 months respectively.
What’s new in Halo Infinite season 3?
In addition to a slew of welcome quality-of-life updates, Halo Infinite season 3 is also the single biggest content drop for the shooter yet, featuring new maps, modes, cosmetics, and even a new weapon. Let’s break it down.
New maps for Halo Infinite season 3
Halo Infinite season 3 will add a number of new maps to the rotation. Most are for the Arena playlists (which pit two teams of four against each other) but one is for Big Team Battle (two teams of 12). The following are confirmed additions:
- Chasm is an Arena map clearly modeled after aspects of the Forerunner structure that comprises the second mission of Halo Infinite’s campaign. Mind the gap!
- Cliffhanger is a mid-sized Arena map — think closer in scale to Launch Site than to Live Fire — with a bunch of man cannons. It was shown off during the grand finals of the Charlotte Kickoff Major last month.
- Oasis is a Big Team Battle map that’s directly inspired by Exile, one of the best Big Team Battle maps from Halo 4, the best Halo game.
Echoes Within will spotlight a dedicated playlist that features the the two Arena maps during its first week, while its second week will include a playlist that only includes Oasis.
Halo Infinite rounded out season 2 with the Community Collection playlist, which spotlights some of the most meticulously designed Arena maps from the Forge creation mode. Season 3 will see continual additions to that playlist. One such map, Art’s Room — a stage set in a teenager’s room, giving the visual impression that Spartans have been Ant-Man’d — was shown off during the trailer for Halo Infinite season 3, though 343 did not provide a release date for it.
New modes for Halo Infinite season 3
Sorry, folks, but Halo Infinite season 3 won’t launch with Infection out of the gate. Instead, we’re getting two back-to-back events and a twist on Halo’s classic “gun game”:
- The big addition is Escalation Slayer, which changes your gear loadout with every kill, giving you better guns and equipment as you increase your score. (You can see the full list of loadouts here.) The catch is that, if you get hit by a melee attack from behind, you’ll go back one tier. Escalation Slayer will be playable in both team and free-for-all variants.
- Season 3’s first event is called “Mindfall,” which appears to continue the so-far utterly barebones “story” of Infinite’s multiplayer mode. It runs from March 7 to March 20. A second one, “Site Unseen,” is planned for an unspecified date later in the season.
- Season 3’s second event is a Fracture — recurring playlists that cycle in throughout the season. Fractures award non-traditional Halo cosmetics (including samurai- and WWII-themed armor sets). This one is called “Firewall,” and it’s a safe bet you’ll nab the Chimera armor core from this one. It’ll run from March 20 to March 27.
You can see a whole calendar of Halo Infinite season 3’s first month here.
New gear for Halo Infinite season 3
Halo Infinite season 3 will add two items to the sandbox, both of which are poised to shake up the meta:
- The bandit rifle is a single-shot rifle. Though it looks and sounds like Halo 4’s DMR, developers and pros who’ve played it pre-release say functions similar to the pistol sidearm from Halo 5: Guardians.
- The shroud screen is a piece of equipment that’s… Look, it’s basically just a smoke bomb.
New cosmetics for Halo Infinite season 3
Halo Infinite’s new cosmetics will be largely be unlockable through season 3’s 100-level battle pass (available as both a free and paid version), with others rolling out on a rotational weekly basis in Infinite’s microtransaction store. Some of these cosmetics will apply to the standard armor cores you already have, but most will apply to the two new sets you’ll get in Echoes Within: Mirage and Chimera. Halo Infinite season 3 will also see the rollout of cosmetics for the Halo Championship Series professional esports teams. Let’s goooo, Quadrant!