I'd been reading the latest patch for Halo: The Master Chief Collection improved the game's notoriously bad matchmaking, so I decided to load up the game to see if this was actually true.
Halo: The Master Chief Collection has been a broken game for many months. It's a cardinal sin a series known for multiplayer has been unable to connect players to one another. The most recent patch promised matchmaking was speedier. I've tested it out, and here's what I've found.
It's worth remembering how bad it used to be for Halo fans. Team Beyond put together an excellent timeline of Halo's profound issues from launch until just a few weeks ago. It's absurd.
At one point, people were spending upwards of an hour to search for a single match of Halo!
That's unacceptable. Heck, it remains unacceptable The Master Chief Collection shipped and charged money for how the game performed back in November. Players have been very patient.
Week after week, patch after patch, 343 Industries has been promising it's been improving. At one point, the studio was going to hold a beta for a patch — a patch! — but decided to cancel it.
When you load up The Master Chief Collection, there are all sorts of multiplayer options available for you. I decided to spend one session this morning and one session this afternoon going through the non-campaign playlists and recording how much time it took get into a game.
With one exception, I was able to connect to a game within a pretty reasonable time frame.
My first test took place a little after waking up this morning:
- Team Halo 2: Anniversary: 3 minutes and 33 seconds
- Halo Championship: 1 minutes and 37 seconds
- Rumble Pit: 2 minutes and 33 seconds
- Team Slayer: 55 seconds
- Snipers: 1 minute and 18 seconds
- Big Team Battle: 5 minutes and 39 seconds (after which the connection dropped out)
- Halo: Combat Evolved: 2 minutes and 58 seconds
- Halo 2 Classic: 1 minute and 9 seconds
- Halo 3: 1 minute and 35 seconds
- Halo 4: 2 minutes and 24 seconds
- Team Hardcore: 3 minutes and 22 seconds
And my second test took place later in the afternoon:
- Team Halo 2 Championship: 1 minute and 43 seconds (faster)
- Halo Championship Series: 2 minutes and 34 seconds (slower)
- Rumble Pit: 5 minutes and 12 seconds (slower)
- Team Slayer: 4 minutes and 49 seconds (slower)
- Snipers: 1 minute and 26 seconds (slower)
- Big Team Battle: 2 minutes and 3 seconds (faster)
- Halo: Combat Evolved: 39 seconds (faster)
- Halo 2 Classic: 2 minutes and 52 seconds (slower)
- Halo 3: 1 minute and 21 seconds (faster)
- Halo 4: 22 seconds (faster)
- Team Hardcore: 1 minute and 49 seconds (faster)
6 out of the 12 playlist options were faster in my second test. A few were actually slower.
It's not surprising the matchmaking was slightly faster in the afternoon, given people were starting to get out of work and school, providing a much larger pool of players to choose from.
Other players are reporting similar results:
Perhaps not coincidentally, this helps explain why Microsoft decided it was finally the right time to announce an Xbox One bundle that comes with The Master Chief Collection.
Let us know what your experience has been like! Better? Worse?
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