First, to list all the potential and/or known playlists for Halo 5; I think they’d look something like this…
Warzone (mixed): Max team size of 12. New; a Strongholds/Dominion-like mode that meshes PvP & PvE together. It’ll also include a progressive 1-sided base assault mode somewhat similar to Invasion or Conversion that’s PvP only.
Slayer (slayer based): The multiplayer staple; likely will include minor variants.
Capture the Flag (non-slayer based): Typically, referring to multi-flag; it’s the staple of non-slayer based gamemodes. Likely to include some variants.
Extraction (non-slayer based): A good mode from Halo 4 where the goal is to control an extraction point(s). I’d like to see it return.
Breakout (slayer based only?): New; this round based elimination game with minimal shields is a great addition. I think additional variants will be introduced.
Ricochet (non-slayer based): An excellent mode introduced in Halo 4 which IMO basically improved upon the classic Neutral Bomb; I hope it’s in Halo 5.
Assault (non-slayer based): <em>In Halo:CE it was a reversed 1-sided flag game. In Halo 2 & 3 it was a 1-sided bomb game requiring the offensive team to haul and detonate it in the enemy’s base (known as Blast Resort in Reach). It was non-existent in Halo 4, but I’d like to see a bomb mode return in Halo 5.</em>
Strongholds, Dominion, Territories, & Land Grab (all non-slayer based): Of these types of territorial capturing games I feel that Strongholds (formerly known as 3-Plot) is the ideal choice for the Arena and it renders Territories expendable. Land Grab, a 1-sided variant, probably shouldn’t return. Warzone’s initial game mode has essentially taken Dominion’s premise somewhat to the next level so I’m not sure Dominion will return, but as a future PvP only variant within Warzone or under the meshed BTB playlist or as a rotational playlist it may have some merit.
King of the Hill (non-slayer based): A classic mode that’s an ideal rotational playlist offering or as an option in meshed playlists.
Oddball (non-slayer based): Another classic mode that’s ideal as a rotational playlist or as an option in a meshed playlist.
Stockpile (non-slayer based): A Flag collection mode that I’m glad never returned after Reach.
Headhunter (slayer based?): I thought it had an opportunity to be improved upon by revamping it into a type of CoD styled Kill Confirm gametype, but the truth is I don’t miss it in it’s original form whatsoever; therefore, without that revamp I’m glad it hasn’t returned to Halo as a mode.
SWAT (slayer based): It’s always been one of my favorite playlists; I hope Breakout’s introduction doesn’t mean it won’t return as they’re really completely different. SWAT is not a round-based elimination style game and it allows for instant kills through precision headshots.
Snipers (slayer based): It has also been a personal favorite of mine including its slight variants such as starting with a shotgun & sniper or two snipers or just a sniper instead of a magnum & sniper; I hope it returns.
Regicide (slayer based): The team version is excellent and a much better take on Halo 3’s VIP gamemode; the FFA variant is okay. I hope it returns in Halo 5.
Action Sack (mixed): It often focused on players simply starting with specific power weapons plus some gameplay gimmicks or it was randomizing the starting weapons in a fiesta style; although, it would also include some gimmicky or wacky non-salyer based games too.
Griftball (non-slayer based): A specific arena based mode that definitely has it’s community following. I’m not personally a fan.
eSports (mixed): Often the equivalent of the Hardcore (no radar) playlists in Halo 2, 3, and Reach which also transitioned into the MLG playlist in 3 and Reach. In Halo 4 it was reflected by the Throwdown playlist and in the Master Chief Collection it’s represented by the Halo Championship Series (HCS) playlist, but Hardcore covers elements of it too.
Big Team (often mixed): Max team size of 8. Sometimes presented as slayer only, sometimes objective only, but often as a mix bag under the “Battle” title.
Squad (often mixed): Often max t**eam size of 6; similar to Big Team’s historic offerings. More likely to simply influence some rotational playlists’ team size.
Doubles (mostly slayer): Team size of 2; kind of a competitive staple offering.
Multi-Team (mixed): Sometimes 4 or 6 teams of 2; other times 4 teams of 3. Often goes hand-in-hand with wacky-ish gametypes.
Infection/Flood (slayer based): FFA; A survival/convert mode often containing variants.
Rumble/Lone Wolf (mostly slayer based): FFA; Lone Wolf is the so-called “more competitive” version of FFA and Rumble has often been geared towards slightly more wacky-ish gametype scenarios including modes like Juggernaut which IMO makes it like an Action Sack FFA playlist.
In the end I’m hoping Halo 5’s playlist offering will breakdown something akin to this…
Arena: (More focused on competitive play; only playlists to include temporary bans, visible CSRs, no JiP, and a forfeit feature)
HCS (4v4; the eSport Playlist) - Slayer (4v4) - Breakout (4v4) - CTF (4v4) - Skirmish (4v4; Strongholds, Ricochet, 1-Site Extraction, KotH & Oddball) - SWAT (4v4) - Snipers (4v4) - Grifball (4v4) - Doubles (2v2) - Lone Wolf (1v5; the only Arena playlist to use an Individual-Based CSR verses a Team-Based CSR)
Warzone: (12v12) PvP + PvE and PvP only too; though, how many overall variants will there eventually be?
BTB: (8v8) Slayer, SWAT, Regicide, Hardcore, Heavies, CTF, 3-Site Extraction, KotH, Dominion, & Assault.
Infection: (1v9 or 1v12) All manner of variants; perhaps to include: Flood, Last Stand, Hivemind, Safe Havens, Alphas and others.
Rotational Playlist 1 (mostly slayer based): These playlists as well as any new introductions should rotate with each other every two weeks.- Action Sack (5v5; Fiesta, Plasma Wars, Mini-Slayer, Snapshot, SWATguns, Paintball, Medal Madness, Lightning Flag, Gungoose CTF, etc.)
Headhunters (5v5; aka Kill-Confirm)
Hardcore (5v5; no radar)
Multi-Team (Fiesta, Slayer, Mini Slayer, Snapshot, SWAT, Regicide, Headhunters, Crazy King, Rocket Race, Rocket Hog Race, etc)
Rumble Pit (1v7; Juggernaut, Fiesta, Gun Game [new], Mini Slayer, Snapshot, Paintball, Crazy King, Race, etc)
Rotational Playlist 2 (non-slayer based): These playlists as well as any new introductions should rotate with each other every two weeks set on the opposite week from the other rotational playlist group so that every week offers a new playlist.- Strongholds (5v5)
Extraction (5v5; 2-Site)
Assault (6v6; 1-sided round based)
This creates 15 Permanent Playlists to choice from; 10 competitive-based playlists found in the Arena, 2 casual-based rotational playlist (1 mostly slayer based & 1 non-slayer based), 1 casual-based Flood playlist, 1 casual-based Big Team Battle playlist, and the casual-based Warzone. In total the game would offer a 2:1 competitive (10) to casual (5) breakdown without creating any real duplicate playlists between the two. I wonder if there should be a very temporary Proving Grounds in-place of the Arena for those just starting.
Note: The forfeit feature I mentioned under the Arena would replace the option to quit in order to allow matches to end prematurely without penalty.
What are you guys (the community) hoping for?