Halo now has bots, and their names are a delight.

It’s a big deal for Halo that Halo Infinite’s multiplayer includes bots. This is a first for the series that dates back to 20 years ago. It also includes the PvE Firefight mode, which was introduced with Halo ODST, and bots in Halo 5’s single game mode called Warzone, which was interesting in theory but had microtransactions. The availability of bots in multiplayer modes means that new players to Halo can practice against more difficult opponents. Those who enjoy Capture the Flag, but don’t want other humans online, can simply jam on their own. While I knew all this going into Infinite’s technical test, I was surprised by how many bot names made me laugh.

Although I hadn’t considered the possibility that Infinite’s bots might have names, it seems sensible in hindsight. It would look pretty boring with human names on one and bot numbers on the other. 343 Industries could have used characters from Halo, but they came up with something better. They put together an eclectic group of philosophers, historical figures, deep-cut movie references, and what I believe are in-jokes. But they still work for me.