It’s literally like a top 5 game on Steam, despite being an Xbox-related title and thus not really having a global audience the same way Xbox itself doesn’t. And that ignores that most of the game’s player base is probably on console, and that anyone planning to play campaign via Game Pass on PC will be playing via the Xbox app.
Is it some Fortnite-level omega-hit? Of course not. But given the development problems of the game and the ongoing criticisms of the MP progression, I’d imagine Microsoft are over the moon with how the game has done so far.
Halo wasn’t some smash hit going from strength to strength here. It was a series seeing declining interest since Halo 3, that hadn’t had a new entry since 2015, and that spent a good portion of last year being an internet meme for how visually bad it looked. That they managed to land the plane to good reviews, a rejuvenated esports scene, and pretty revitalized interest in the series, was a big triumph for them.
I think the clock is ticking on the stuff they need to fix and add to multiplayer, but they’re off to a strong start.