The Purple View

Reviews, rants and purpleness

Whats So Good About Halo?: Shoot meh some covenant

Posted by Nathan Hardisty on February 23, 2009


Sort of thought this would be the easiest part of doing this whole series, but turns out you guys want more about mulitplayer. So there was only one thing I could do, shell out for Halo 3 again and hit it in a lobby… boy was I surprised at how bad it is. So anyway, another glorious welcome to the series that no-one cares about, and you can’t bother reading! The Halo series has always been said to include ‘massive’ epic fights and general set pieces to make COD4 wet his pants… well… ummm… no.

So, let’s make a start with the mutiplayer this time ’round. You might remember me bloodily ripping into Half-Life 2, while ignoring the fact that it does make a pretty good engine for it’s multiplayer component – Half Life 2 Deathmatch. Well, it seems Bungie saw this as advice… and didn’t use it at all , they seemed to only focus on multiplayer since Halo 2. Halo 1’s campaign was somewhat… epic in scale and generally cost you 10 hours to complete, Halo 2 took 7 and I spent only another 7 hours beating Halo 3… yeah…

So what does Bungie expect us to do? Go on multiplayer for the rest of our game interests? I felt a bit short-changed when I found out that it only took 7 hours, and well… a lot of other people did too. But what spoiled it all was just the amount of obviousness that Bungie wanted a better multiplayer experience, than the campaign. They put in online co-op just to sweeten it up, but they didn’t get good enough sugar… I don’t know if everyone who owns a Xbox wants to play an FPS multiplayer over and over again, for £40/$60.

With such a wide focus on multiplayer, you’d think that the actual playing would be good? Mmmmm no. All it is, is just a generally unbalanced game. If you’ve got the rocket launcher, just keep your distance, and you’ve won the game. If you’ve got a shotgun on a close-quarters map, you’ve won the game. It just all seems that Bungie just wants us to jump around like FPS idiots, shoot each other and then wait to respawn , does that make it bad? Hell yeah.

Let’s take for example, Call of Duty 4. You can customize your perks, weapons etc. in Halo 3 , you have to rush to the rocket launcher and you can only change your armour. Another example… Team Fortress 2, a wide-based class system which adds depth and funniez, in Halo 3 there’s Spartans and Alienz… yes I can’t be bothered to find out the real names. In most of these games, you have to be quick and cunning, dashful and on the trigger, in Halo 3 – just rush for the rocket pod.

I’m moaning too much about multiplayer… but it’s just about the same in the campaign. Get the needler or a good chunky minigun, and you’ve just about won. There is really no sense of epic scale, ‘cos if you want to take on a billion brutes at once with a machine gun, it feels watered down. All you do is keep your finger on the trigger, fiddly aim to the brute’s body and wait 30 seconds. Sure you have to take cover from other shots and dudes, but there’s still no real… need.

Which brings me  to the set pieces, and they’re actually pretty good… if repeated. The Scarab battle near the beginning is awesome and you do get a scope of scale inside the thing. Couple of levels later and you face 2 of them, oh my god the same experience timesed by 2! This could possibly be awesome! But only one thing, gaming mathematics don’t work that way, and there is no difference between 1 scarab and two, maybe just more annoying.

Well, that’s all folks! Halo 3’s gameplay, gunplay and multiplayer in less than 1000 words! Go me! Well, until next time of course, keep your gaming hats on and remember 2 x 1 doesn’t equal two… stay safe kids!


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