Halo Infinite's bots aren't programmed to teabag you after a kill, says 343

Some players in the technical test had observed what could be seen as after-kill taunting. 343 Industries says that's a glitch.

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Teabagging and Halo grew up together. It’s a fact. As LANs evolved into online gameplay and online gameplay became a regular circus of many opponents discovering ways to troll each other after any victory, rapid use of the crouch button has taken on quite a role. It’s such a recognizable gesture that players in Halo Infinite’s recent technical playtest thought it seemed like Halo Infinite’s bots had also figured out how to teabag you after killing you. 343 Industries says that’s not the case though, at least not on purpose.

343 Industries went to clear the matter of the teabagging bots in Halo Infinite soon after users posted videos on the Halo subreddit of what appeared to be the classic taunt from the recent technical playtest. In the video clip, it can clearly be seen that as a player gets gunned down, the offending bot stops in their tracks for a sec and lets loose a barrage of what appear to be crouches - something any glancing player could take as a purposeful teabag taunt.

In a conversation with Kotaku, 343 says the bots weren’t programmed to taunt players and it was simply a glitch that made it look that way. The developer said that would actually be counterproductive to their mission with bots in Halo Infinite multiplayer.

“The bots are meant to be welcoming and fun for players of all skill levels, and a feature designed to taunt a player would oppose that goal,” 343 said.

The real culprit? Stairs and elevated platforms, apparently. Bots in Halo Infinite’s technical playtest had trouble with getting too close to stairs where they should be jumping on them and then trying to jump to compensate, resulting in a rapid movement that looks a lot like a teabag.

“If that happened to be observed shortly after a kill, or near a player's body, it can definitely feel like an intentional behavior,” the developer explained. “In reality, the bot was just struggling to go up the stairs.”

It seems likely. Technical playtest means Halo Infinite isn’t even in beta form yet, so there are bound to be bugs and glitches. It was kind of funny to imagine that bots might be programmed to take on the taunting nature that hotdogging players have made part of the game over decades, but it also seems understandable that you wouldn’t want to dissuade newcomers from playing with your AI. Besides, real players will probably go out of their way do that just fine if you let them.

There’s a lot we’re still expecting to see from Halo Infinite following the technical playtest, including the possibility of battle royale. That said, it looks like teabagging bots won’t be part of the foreseeable updates to the game. Nonetheless, stay tuned for further details as we get closer to Halo Infinite’s Fall 2021 release.

News Editor

TJ Denzer is a player with a passion for games that has dominated a lifetime. When he's not handing out beatdowns in the latest fighting games, exploring video game history, or playing through RPGs with his partner, he's searching for new food and drinks in the constant pursuit of good times with good people inside and outside the South Texas area. You can also find him on Twitter @JohnnyChugs.

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