Saturday, November 03, 2012

Game Review (Halo 4 - 360)

It's here. It's finally here. After what I thought was a disappointment in Bungie's final Halo game, Halo: Reach, 343 Industries has taken the helm for a new trilogy. Halo 4 takes place after Halo 3, which was released over 5 years ago now. How is this game different?

As far as multiplayer (That will be the highlight of my review, sorry for the campaign fans), 343 has implemented a lot of things from Call of Duty. Don't let that scare you though if that idea doesn't sound good to you -- it works flawlessly in Halo 4. While the perks seem to run the multiplayer in Call of Duty, what truly should be the difference -- the gun -- is what truly matters in Halo 4. Unlike Call of Duty, there doesn't seem to be any overpowered "perk" in this game. Some of the guns seem to be excessively powerful, but they all have downfalls. Whether that downfall is a small clip or something else, 343 makes sure nothing in the game is gamebreaking, which is impressive. Something that should also be noted is that everybody in multiplayer now has the ability to sprint for a limited time, which makes the gameplay faster paced and more frantic. That inclusion, unsurprisingly, only makes this game better.

The maps in the multiplayer mostly range from good to fantastic, with not even one map that I would say I truly dislike. The maps here have a vast variety from small to large in size, and snowy to grassy. My personal favorite has to be Exile, which is a fairly big map that makes for hectic Capture the Flag matches, and it just looks and plays phenomenally.

If you enjoyed Firefight from Reach, I'm sorry to say it's not returning. Instead though, 343 has included Spartan Ops. In this free mode, content will be released weekly with several episodes for you and your friends to play in. While the missions are fairly entertaining, I'm not quite sure what the purpose of them is, mainly because they seem to end before you even start going.

As for the campaign, I won't spoil a thing, but I will tell you that this is probably the best campaign yet in the series. The voice acting is better than ever, the humans' facial reactions are spot on, and there are -- thankfully -- very few parts in it that aren't fun. I can also tell you that this is one of the hardest campaigns I've played in a shooter... at least on its highest difficulty setting, Legendary.

I tried to keep this review relatively short. There is a lot to say about this game and its contents, but I wouldn't be able to do the game justice. Rather than have you waste 20 minutes reading this review, I'd rather give you that time to go out and get the game if you haven't already.

Halo 4 won't exactly change the genre, but it has taken the essences of Halo 3 and the good portions of Halo: Reach (Did I mention there's no Armor Lock in this game?), and made one of the best online gaming experiences for this generation. It could well be the closest thing you'll find to Xbox LIVE multiplayer gaming nirvana.


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