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Halo 5: There's good news and bad news

UPDATE: Will require Gold account for co-op after all.

UPDATE: It looks like Halo 5 will require an Xbox Live Gold subscription to play in co-op, a mode that is now online only without split-screen.

"I misspoke during the interview when stating that online co-op campaign would be supported with an Xbox Live Silver account," clarified 343 executive producer Josh Holmes in a statement on Halo Waypoint. "Co-op campaign will require Xbox Live Gold to play. I want to extend my sincere apologies to our fans, and to Game Informer, for this error and any confusion it has caused."

"That said, it is important to us that fans have the opportunity to play the full co-op campaign experience and we are doing this by providing a 14-day Xbox Live Gold trial with Halo 5: Guardians," he added.

But hey, on the plus side, free maps are still a thing.

ORIGINAL STORY: Game Informer has published its Halo 5: Guardians-themed issue, and there's good news and bad news about the Xbox One shooter.

Let's start with the bad news: Halo 5 doesn't support split-screen co-op. Bah.

Halo 5, then, will mark the first time a main Halo game hasn't supported split-screen co-op since the series began with Halo: Combat Evolved in 2001. Split-screen has been a staple - and popular - feature of the Halo campaign for years. Now, no more.

As revealed yesterday, Halo 5's campaign supports co-op for up to four players - but we now know co-op is online only.

In the campaign Master Chief is accompanied by Blue Team in both single-player and four-player co-op. In Halo 5 Blue Team appear in cutscenes and accept commands from Master Chief in single-player. In co-op, each player plays as a specific member, each with a different loadout.

At some point in the story Master Chief and Blue Team are declared AWOL by the UNSC. This is where the campaign flips to focus on Spartan Jameson Locke (from the Halo: Nightfall TV series). Locke tracks the Chief down with the help of a team of his own: Fireteam Osiris.

That's the bad news. Now for the good news: players won't need an Xbox Live Gold account for online co-op.

On to competitive multiplayer, and there's more good news. Developer 343 Industries told Game Informer Halo 5 launches with over 20 maps. More than 15 downloadable maps will be released by June 2016 - all free. 343 said it didn't want to divide the player base by selling maps, which is good news for everyone.

Also of note in the Game Informer article: 343 boss Bonnie Ross goes into the catastrophic launch of Halo: The Master Chief Collection, which came out with broken matchmaking.

Ross said packaging all four Halo games together and adding a universal user interface that let you switch seamlessly from game to game "created huge challenges".

"In hindsight, it would probably have been better to ship the four games separately," Ross said.

"And I think that fans would've loved that. We wanted to do more. We wanted it to be this gift to the fans."

Ross added that 343 should have done a beta for The Master Chief Collection, and vowed to do a beta for all future Halo games in a bid to avoid making the same mistake again.

"Going forward, you will never see a Halo game coming out without a beta," she said

"It was obviously painful for our fans and for us. But it won't happen again. There are things we put in place to make sure that we know everything, how it stands up outside and in the world."

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