Halo Infinite splitscreen co-op mode is back from the dead

Two Spartans holding rifles in Halo Infinite
(Image credit: Xbox Game Studios)

Halo Infinite fans have discovered a way of playing the shooter in splitscreen co-op, after the game mode was officially canned.

While local campaign co-op had previously been announced for Halo Infinite, 343 Industries’ head of creative Joseph Staten confirmed work on the mode had been scrapped in a recent video update. As spotted by Eurogamer, a fan on Twitter discovered a workaround that lets players access the shelved feature.

The nifty menu glitch lets you add other players to your campaign session, so you can play Halo Infinite co-op with a buddy beside you. It only appears to be accessible for players on Xbox Series X|S, leaving PC gamers out of the fun. 

How to play Halo Infinite co-op

Halo Infinite

(Image credit: 343 Industries)

To play Halo Infinite in splitscreen co-op you’ll first need to boot up the campaign solo, create a save file, and have a friend waiting in the game’s main menu. They can be idling on a console version of the game or on PC, but must be connected to the Halo online network. From there, follow these steps:

  •  Select and load a campaign save file
  • As the game starts to load, immediately tap the Xbox Wireless Controller's View Button to bring up the 'Social' menu
  • Navigate to the 'Friends' tab, find your buddy who’s idling in the game’s menu, and select to join their fireteam
  • Go back to the 'Social' menu, find the fireteam you've just joined, and select to leave
  • Navigate to the ‘Server’ settings screen and set the server to ‘Local Offline’
  • Connect additional controllers to your console and link them with an Xbox profile, just as you usually would when playing a multiplayer match
  • Select ‘Play’ to start

According to Halo fan account Halo Creation, who posted the tutorial online, the workaround is seamless. You should be able to play the campaign with a friend without running into any crashes, AI bugs, or other glitches. According to another player on Reddit, the trick also supports four-player co-op.

Don’t expect the workaround to be about forever, though. As a glitch, it will likely be patched out in a future update, and 343 is unlikely to ever provide an official alternative.

"We’ve had to make the difficult decision to not ship campaign split-screen co-op, and take the resources that we would use on that [to] go after... all of these other things," said Staten in the video update. Those "other things" include quality-of-life updates, live service content, and bug fixes.

Online campaign co-op is still on the table. It’s expected to roll out in the game’s Winter Update period between November 8 and  March 7, overshooting its August release window that was announced after several delays. It’ll be joined by a beta Forge mode, new competitive game mode Covert One Flag, two new multiplayer maps, and a free 30-tier battle pass.

But Halo Infinite's local co-op mode might not have been as impressive as hoped. Online co-op has been available in beta for a few weeks, and while fun, doesn’t keep the campaign fresh

Callum Bains
Gaming News Writer

Callum is TechRadar Gaming’s News Writer. You’ll find him whipping up stories about all the latest happenings in the gaming world, as well as penning the odd feature and review. Before coming to TechRadar, he wrote freelance for various sites, including Clash, The Telegraph, and Gamesindustry.biz, and worked as a Staff Writer at Wargamer. Strategy games and RPGs are his bread and butter, but he’ll eat anything that spins a captivating narrative. He also loves tabletop games, and will happily chew your ear off about TTRPGs and board games.