The most noteworthy change in the roadmap (which was released on April 22) is that Season 2 will last for six months, double the three month length that 343 Industries previously suggested. Season 2 will start on May 3 and end on November 7.
Back in August, 343 Industries said seasons will last approximately three months, with co-op shipping in Season 2 and Forge mode in Season 3.
It appears all three of these previously promised dates have slipped. According to the latest roadmap, Season 3 will now release on November 8, while Forge will enter an “Open Beta” during that season and campaign co-op still lingers without a release date.
Forge will also persist after it enters open beta, “evolving and growing over time.”
To its credit, 343 Industries acknowledged it needs to release features and content more quickly, but that its biggest priority is keeping the development team healthy by maintaining a good work/life balance.
Season 2, called “Lone Wolves”, will launch in less than two weeks on May 3, with brand new maps – Catalyst and Breaker – and new game modes.
“Catalyst is a symmetrical arena map nested high up inside of an expansive, tunnel-like Forerunner structure. You’ll find waterfalls pouring down around suspended catwalks, overgrown cathedral walls, and a light bridge connecting the sides of the map together,” said multiplayer level designer Tyler Ensrude.
Breaker, meanwhile, “is a pseudo symmetric [Big Team Battle] map set in a Banished scrapyard where each team’s base is a huge chunk of ship debris, divided by the plasma cutting beam structure in the middle.”
In terms of game modes, Season 2 will feature King of the Hill, Land Grab and Last Spartan Standing.
Last Spartan Standing is a completely new game mode, where 12 players are dropped into a Big Team Battle map with five lives, and when a player loses them all they’re eliminated, at which point they can either spectate or leave the match entirely “without penalty”.
There will also be a persistent battle pass throughout the season, as there was with Season 1 “Heroes of Reach”.