Halo 4 Infinity Challenge: LET THEM EAT CAKE

Halo 4 Infinity Challenge: LET THEM EAT CAKE


In case you haven’t heard, there’s this thing called the Halo 4 Infinity Challenge. It started December 17 and has two awesome grand prizes, one for Spartan Ops and one for War Games. The Spartan Ops (spops from now on) grand prize is a two minute cameo in Halo 5 – yes, you could be a character in Halo 5. The War Games (WG) grand prize is a 2013 Ford SVT Raptor that has been decked out in UNSC garb – it’s legit. If this doesn’t get you salivating, then thousands of also-ran prizes are up for grabs as well. It is an amazing contest and you should check it out at www.halo4infinitychallenge.com. There are a lot more details I could give, but they’re on the site, so why repeat?

What I really want to get into is my personal experience thus far with playing in this contest and my conversations regarding it with my friends, family, and my wife. It sure has been interesting, funny, and a rollercoaster of emotion (anyone want to guess as to who caused this?). All this and it’s only been 3 days of competition!

When I first heard of this contest, I turned into a teenage girl going to a Bieber concert. “I could meet him.” “Maybe we’ll have a conversation.” “He could be my boyfriend.” Now that I’ve barfed, what I really thought was: “That truck is f****** awesome.” “I could be in Halo 5?!” I immediately had day dreams of playing Halo and crushing the competition for the win then taking the truck with Palmer riding shotgun into the sunset.

Then I read the rules. I will sum them up so: “Whomever has no life, does not work, and has no relational commitments to any human being, 343 does decree that to you shall be given the choice of either a $50,000 truck or an appearance in Halo 5.” That’s right, I said it – this contest will go to the two people who have the most amount of time to devote to playing Halo. The spops contest is simply whoever plays the most spops chapters in the time allotted. The WG contest is simply whoever accumulates the most points (not to be confused with xp) in the designated playlist (slayer) in the time allotted. Granted, the WG contest isn’t purely time because to get points in slayer you have to actually be able to point a reticle onto another spartan whilst simultaneously pulling a trigger. But ultimately, it comes down to time; you could be the greatest slayer out there and get 400 points every single match, but if you can’t devote 16+ hours a day to Halo then you don’t have a chance.

And the proof is in the current statistics. Just take a look at the scoreboards. It’s absolutely ridiculous where the leaders are at after only 3 days of gameplay. In spops, the top rank has logged 344 chapters played. WG the total points for the leader is 88,525. Insane. Rather, Unfrigginbelievable. Let me put it to you in a way that makes sense in my economics & finance mind:

For spops: Let’s just say you average 8 minutes per chapter played. This is feasible this week if you play the right chapters. The 8 minutes is also including the matchmaking portion between games, mind you. Under this assumption, the leader with 344 chapters played in 3 days would have had to play 2,752 minutes, otherwise known as 45 hours and 52 minutes. Now take that and divide it by 3 days and you’re talking about playing over 15 hours of spops each of those 3 days. I don’t know about you, but 15 hours of the same mission on spops sounds like more chore than fun to me. It’s feasible, but I wouldn’t do it. I’m interested to see how long this guy can keep the pace.

For WG, I’ll spare you the longevity of all the math and give you my straight analysis of the leader’s score. Under the assumptions of 300 points per game (which is on the high end) and 10 minute games + matchmaking (on the low end), this would require 48 hours total played thus far, or 16 hours per day. If you drop the average points per game to 200, it would require 24 hours per day for the past 3 days. I’m sorry, but everyone has to eat, drink, the opposite, and at some point sleep. I’m very doubtful of this score going on…I will have to do some investigative journalism and look at TwitchGamesager’s game history to really know if this is legit. I suspect multiple people are playing on the same gamertag and/or xbox.

Legit or not, it’s beside the point. On January 10, 2013, everyone is herded into their respective tier and the points go to zero. So here’s my question: Why spend so much time to be at the top of the leaderboards when all you have to do is qualify in tier 1? As long as you finish in tier 1 during the qualifying stage, you have a shot at the grand prize. The last place person in tier 1 can win – and guess what, starting January 12, 2013, that last place person will have just as many points as the first: ZERO.

Here’s my current experience so far: I’ve played 58 chapters of spops which puts me in tier 1, nice! Only two games of WG and I’m stuck in tier 3. I’ve done nothing but play Halo after coming home from work and it was an exciting prospect of winning. But then my wife said something really profound to me (after all the rollercoaster stuff that was prior): “With all the time you’re wasting playing Halo [read: and not spending with me] you could just buy the prize you want…Plus, you’re not going to win anyways.” My world collapsed. This is the second time my world has collapsed since Halo 4 came out. The first time was when Co – [the end of Halo4 happened]. But honestly, it sent me back to reality. I’m not going to win the contest. I’m not going to win that awesome truck. I’m not going to be in Halo 5 – unless my acting career finally takes off (has there been a casting call yet?). And I easily could buy any of the prizes (minus the truck) if I wanted, so perhaps spending time with my wife is more important than playing Halo.


It’s been fun playing with friends and most importantly with my brother. We live in different states so it’s nice to have xbl to play together. Much of our lives have been spent playing Halo together, something I really cherish. Except for the fact that he told me I’m not going to win, too. Just wait and see whose stocking has coal when you come over for Christmas. We have the spawns down pat on one of the spops missions (no, I will not give you my secret)…it results in 4-5 assassinations a game each. It also makes it much easier since 343 upped it to legendary difficulty for the contest.

As a fan who works full time, it’s disappointing to see myself removed from a contest purely based on my commitments in real life. It would be nice if they developed a system where it could be competitive by all, which wouldn’t have been all too difficult. But alas, as a fan who has played Halo since it first came out, I’m glad there’s thousands of other prizes to shoot for. Seriously, you should go check them out and register for the contest if you haven’t already. I think 343 has done an excellent service to the community by creating something so easily accessible. All you have to do is sign up and play on Xbox live.

What do you think? Definitely would love to hear any questions, comments, or snide remarks below.

Cheers and good luck,

The Wach

***The statistics used in this post are obviously a few days old. The leaderboards have shaken up some and I plan to cover this contest further, so look for more posts and let us know if you want anything specific covered.

P.S. I would like to thank the hosts of PGCR for letting me write this up and join them in this awesome blog. I know it takes a lot of trust to add in someone new -especially on a short notice. I’m looking forward to this becoming something great.