Halo 5: Guardians was released on October 27, resulting in record-breaking day-one and first-week sales. Developer 343 Industries promised post-release support for the game as well; that includes not only patches but also DLC that features free multiplayer content.
A little over two weeks later, the first of that DLC has been announced. Titled "Battle of Shadow and Light", the DLC pack will be free to download and will have a number of features including: an 8 vs. 8 "Big Team Battle" mode, new weapons, new maps, new customization options and more.
The revealed DLC showcases two new armor styles, Shinobi and Tracer, as well as weapons, armor variants and vehicle skin variants of differing rarities. A total of 46 REQs are included, including the full Shinobi and Tracer sets and a secret REQ item that hints at next month's DLC content. Big Team Battle mode comes with four new maps as well: Deadlock, Basin, Guillotine and Recurve. Also in the mix is a new uncommon Assassination, where a player facing a knife-wielding opponent can finish off their enemy by stealing the knife and driving it through the enemy's helmet (with a knee to the face).
This is the second Halo game developed by 343 Industries, as the company was also the developer for Halo 4. That game also featured DLC, with much of it coming in the form of paid DLC map and skin packs. Free content was also released, including the "Forge Island" map pack and "Spartan Ops" post-campaign content.
Because of the large amount of paid DLC in Halo 4, 343 Industries had to go big with this first release; fans were likely watching to see whether they'd really deliver on their promise of "meaningful post-launch support and expanded free content." Given how many companies focus on paid DLC and cosmetic options that have little gameplay purpose, seeing a multiplayer content pack like this that's free to download is definitely going to win over some fans. The promise of more content next month is also meaningful, since it shows that the DLC cycle will be frequent enough to keep players interested with new content at regular intervals.
Of course, there will always be the fans who would prefer all of this content to have been in the release version of the game instead of being part of post-release DLC. Some may also wonder how much free content will be available in the future, since it's unlikely that all of the content packs will be free like "Battle of Shadow and Light" is. While these are justified concerns, 343 Industries is at least off to a good start with its first post-release drop.
The "Battle of Shadow and Light" content pack for Halo 5: Guardians is set for release in the week of November 16th, 2015.
Source: Halo Waypoint