Halo: The Master Chief Collection For PC May Let You Sell Mods For Money
If the lawyers agree.
Microsoft has clarified its stance on mods for Halo: The Master Chief Collection on PC, and there are some intriguing details to be learned. In a blog post, 343 senior producer Michael Fahrny said that while it is still relatively early days--after all, only Halo: Reach is available on PC right now with The Master Chief Collection--he said the team is keen to work with fans to build out an offering that could even include the ability to buy and sell mods in the Steam Workshop.
"For modding, we're very much still dipping our toes in the water. I have some long-term goals to empower the modding community more than they already are, but I'm not quite ready to go into details yet on that," Fahrny said.
He went on to say that one of the "most important" elements of modding for Halo on PC is to ensure the proper "ground rules and guard rails" are in place. The first part of this is creating an End User License Agreement (EULA) that "clearly defines what we will support being done while also maintaining the integrity of our game service and protected environments (think matchmaking)."
Work began on this EULA in November, and it was based in part on feedback from the Minecraft team at Microsoft. A draft of the EULA is currently sitting with Microsoft's lawyers.
Once the EULA has been confirmed, Microsoft can get to work on "what potential tools our team can commit to and prioritize work around them."
Fahrny also said he is personally a big fan of games with modding support, because the mods people create help extend the longevity of a game by giving the player something new to return to on a regular basis. "It's important to me as a player and I can finally bring that with me into MCC," he said.
For modding in MCC, Fahrny said it will be important to lower the barrier to entry "as much as we can" as it relates to the modding tools and mod-managing systems for less technically savvy people. "The current ways can be complicated and lead to people getting themselves into bad states," he said. "It's just not good for long term modding health. More official tools, things like Steam Workshop support, etc. are the best path forward."
On the subject of the Steam Workshop, Fahrny said Microsoft is considering an environment where people can buy and sell MCC mods. However, this will depend on whether EULA gets approved by Microsoft's lawyers, it seems. "We are talking about this and not fundamentally against it, but it will come down to what we're legally able to allow," he said.
Although MCC does not have a complete and official modding program as of yet, PC players are very enterprising and have already created a lot of imaginative and impressive mods. You can see some of Fahrny's favorites through the links below.
MCC on PC currently only includes Halo: Reach. In the future, it will add Halo: Combat Evolved, Halo 2, Halo 3, Halo 3: ODST, and Halo 4, following periods of testing. Halo: Combat Evolved is undergoing its first testing phase in February. You can sign up for the Halo Insider program for a chance to get into beta.
The next mainline Halo game is Halo Infinite, and it's scheduled to be released on Xbox Series X, Xbox One, and PC later this year.
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