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*** Official "Halo" Review & Discussion thread

Discussion in 'Archived Threads 2001-2004' started by Camp, Nov 15, 2001.

  1. Camp

    Camp Cinematographer

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    Now that everyone has joined the Xbox club initial impressions of Halo are starting to pop up in many threads. Virtually every opinion seems to be "awesome!" or "fantastic". I wonder, is this really the collective opinion of this game or is everyone just overly excited to finally be playing their Xbox?
    I ask because I'm kind of torn on my opinion.
    Halo looks wonderful and the DD sound is groundbreaking but the gameplay doesn't add anything new in the world of FPS. It doesn't approach the depth of scripting seen in Half-Life (which it is often compared to) and it lacks any new gameplay components to really distinguish it from what's been done.
    That said, it is a highly polished product and Bungie deserves tons of credit for that. Subtle graphical nuances make the game a bit more real. The control is better than this keyboard-and-mouse gamer could ever have hoped for. But the crown jewel in this game has got to be the enemy A.I. The opponents can be quite intelligent at times. Then later in the game they almost ruin this great A.I. by numbing the player with large masses of enemies (wait until you meet "the flood")
    Halo has also been praised for its story...something I just don't get at all. It tries to establish the story a la Half-Life but in the end nothing going on is really all that compelling.
    I just don't know what to think. It's certainly good but I couldn't give it more than a B-. In any event, I'm back on the PC playing Tribes 2. As good as the graphics are in Halo it still can't compete with the resolution I'm seeing here (not to mention the gameplay elements in T2).
     
  2. Dave F

    Dave F Cinematographer

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    Well, I think i'm still in "the glow" [​IMG]. That said, I'm enjoying the game, but 2 things are driving me nuts. It's confusing as to where you should be going, and driving the warthog is one of the most frustrating experiences I've ever had in a game! I've finally gotten the hang of going forward, but reverse is even more f**ked up, especially when the camera starts spinning around.
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    DVD List
    "The page you are looking for is here no more. Quoth the Raven, 'Nevermore.'"
     
  3. Camp

    Camp Cinematographer

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  4. Kelley_B

    Kelley_B Cinematographer

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    I'm still having a hard time aiming, I wany my mouse and keyboard!!!!! I love it when the little guys say, "They're Everywhere" the voice that they used is great.
     
  5. Dave F

    Dave F Cinematographer

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    Yeah, those little guys sound like Jawas! I keep expecting one to shout "Oooo-teeedeee!" [​IMG]
    I've been thinking about first-person games with a strong story element, and a common thread is that the main character is very developed. For examples, in both Deus Ex and No One Lives Forever, the characters of JC Denton and Cate Archer (sp?) are both very developed, and helps to draw the game player into the story. This is a sorely lacking element in Halo. After 8 or 9 hours, is still don't really know what role my character is playing, and I don't really know how this whole thing got started between humans and the Covenant. Did I miss it, or is it explained later?
    I'm having a blast playing it as an action game, but I don't think that the story telling element is at the level it should be (and was intended to be?).
    -Dave
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    DVD List
    "The page you are looking for is here no more. Quoth the Raven, 'Nevermore.'"
     
  6. Wolf Jenkins

    Wolf Jenkins Stunt Coordinator

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    Hmm - just spent an hour getting off the ship and halfway through the next act.
    I like it, but I'm still having control issues. never played an FPS on a controller. I _think_ I can get the hang of it, but its a curve.
    So far, so good. Not a big FPS fan, but it was fun for an hour. I guess that's what I was looking for - and damn, it looks good.
    however, the "no controller extenions" on the market is really pissing me off. I have to sit on the floor! (couch is like 12 feet away from the TV!
     
  7. Dan Brecher

    Dan Brecher Producer

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    This thread is now the Official Halo Review and Discussion thread. Subsequent threads about this X-box game release in the Gaming Software forum are subject to possible closure and/or deletion without prior warning.
    Dan (UK)
     
  8. Shawn C

    Shawn C Screenwriter

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    1. Control - Yeah, it took me until the point that I got off of the ship and halfway through the next mission to get it under control. No problems now, though. Thankfully, the targeting circle that they give you is pretty large. The sniper rifle rocks.
    2. Warthog/Others control - Again, very weird when you first try it. But, like the movement controls, pretty easy to get going. This is NOT a driving game.
    3. Graphics - The beauty of Halo is in the details.
    {
    A. Brushed aluminum walls that get washed out in light when a flashlight is shined on them.
    B. Instead if just random, static looking 'indicator 'lights on the walls, alot of the lights are in motion, or blinking, or whatever.
    C. The way your hand gets hot with one of the alien weapons and you need to shake it off.
    D. Shooting a round from the tank and seeing 4 or 5 baddies blown up into the air and out away from the explosion.
    E. When you zoom in with the sniper rifle, enabling night vision, only the middle portion of the screen is in focus, with a blurred outer periphery.
    }
    4. Sounds. Here are some of the things that I have heard from the enemies: "Why me? Not again! More Enemies! Enemy is Here!" Here are some of the things that I have heard other Marines say "It's Him!(You) Nice shot! Get out of the way! Hey, that was my kill!"
    Like I said, the beauty of Halo is in the details.
     
  9. Camp

    Camp Cinematographer

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    Shawn,
    I totally agree. That's where my opinion is torn. Those "beautiful details" are truely fantastic but the gameplay and story elements just aren't up to par.
     
  10. Camp

    Camp Cinematographer

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    BTW, I kind of liked my original title for this thread. "After the Glow: How good is Halo"
     
  11. Shawn C

    Shawn C Screenwriter

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    Half-Life did have alot better setup than Halo has. In Halo, you are pretty much dropped into the middle of this conflict. In Half-Life you were a witness to the start of the mayhem. In Halo, you aren't. I don't think this is necessarily a bad thing, it's just different. I think someone else mentioned the need to perhaps play Marathon before playing Halo. I guess Halo is really some sort of sequel to Marathon. From what I have heard, the payoff is pretty good in the end.
    At this point, I believe that I am about half-way through with Halo (Just got the cartographer, actually, a little past that.) and am loving the game. I enjoy the action. Visually, the game reminds me, in spirit, of the Unreal Tournament style.
    One thing that I am NOT a fan of, is going after something, getting it, and then having to fight your way BACK through to the entrance. At least you get some audio cues that it is going to happen. (Audio intercepts of incoming reinforcements.) But I guess it's better than getting what you were after and then just being magically transported to the next level.
     
  12. James Nguyen

    James Nguyen Second Unit

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    Part of what's missing from the plot of Halo is the apparently rich backstory that the Prequel novel provides. I haven't read it personally, but those who have tell me that there's quite a bit of storyline involving the humans and Covenant as well as the history of Master Chief and how it came to be that he's this super hero type of fighter.
    I'm intrigued enough that I've decided I'll have to pickup the prequel sometime and sit down and read it.....after I've had time to work my way through Halo though.
    When all is said and done, sure it doesn't bring all that much new to the table (aside from amazing AI of the enemy and your marine allies, and excellent, excellent textures....look down at your feet and stare at the grass sometime) but the overall quality of execution and the attention to the minor details give it polished feel that most games out there just can't match, irregardless of system or technical excellence. The telling sign is if you're so drawn in that you stop conscious thought on the mechanics of playing the game and instead find yourself almost surreally living through the experience of the game.
     
  13. Jay W

    Jay W Supporting Actor

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    Couple people here mentioned Halo was 480p/4:3, I just want to know how it looks for those who are running it on a widescreen TV. Especially models which lock into full mode given a progressive signal. Does it look ok stretched? if not what other solutions are there.. I assume doing a S-video hookup (interlaced) in order to change display modes is the only other choice?
    Just a little curious.
    ------------------
    [ Home Theater | DVD Collection ]
     
  14. RyanM

    RyanM Agent

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    There's a bit of backstory in the manual that puts everything into proper context, but I think I'm the only person on earth who reads manuals [​IMG]. In any case, it's nothing that the intro video couldn't have briefed over with a bit of narration, so this was a missed opportunity.
    Ryan
     
  15. Lou Sytsma

    Lou Sytsma Producer

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    Jehan - the XBox has display options for normal, widescreen, and letterbox. You should be able to use widescreen and/or letterbox to get that problem.
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  16. Wolf Jenkins

    Wolf Jenkins Stunt Coordinator

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    I'm on a 16x9 display and I do strech it, but i don't really notice the difference. Sure, there is a little distortion around the edges, but it's a game, after all. You can't really tell what the original dimensions were as easily as you can with real humans...
     
  17. Dave Falasco

    Dave Falasco Screenwriter

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    Jehan,
    I've got a Pioneer 610HD TV, which does lock in full with a progressively scanned image, and Halo looked so natural stretched that I was surprised to hear it was actually 4:3. When I got the hi-def A/V pack, I set my display option to widescreen, and I just assumed Halo was actually a widescreen-enhanced game, because I couldn't see even a hint of stretching or distorting.
    Not saying everyone will have the same experience, because I know not all TVs stretch the same way, but on my set, stretching the 4:3 Halo image is simply not an issue.
     
  18. Jay W

    Jay W Supporting Actor

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  19. AndyVX

    AndyVX Supporting Actor

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    Just beat Halo! Me and a friend played co-op. We played it on easy mode. Damn, it was still hard...I would hate to see how much trouble we would have had on any of the harder modes.
    Well, for anyone that has beat the game, what the hell was with that ending?
    Spoiler: Can you say Halo 2?
    And, does anyone know if you beat the game on a higher difficulty level if you get a different ending?
    Thanks.
    Andrew
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  20. Romier S

    Romier S Producer

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    Still playing through the game here. I just got the AV pack and will be hooking it up to my 5.1 receiver when I get home (damn work!)
    So far this game is phenominal!!! I'm usually a pretty strict mouse and keyboard kind of guy when it comes to first person shooters but It didn't take me long to get the hang of the controls. The Marine AI is great and I love seeing them take a slew of Covenant down. The warthog is about the damned coolest thing I've played in a game. I feel like I'm driving one of those pick up trucks in the future timeline of the Terminator movies. [​IMG]
    One of the best things about the game is the pacing. Its almost perfect. The difficulty so far has increased at an excellent rate while not becoming too overbearing too quickly. Great job Bungie!!!
    [Edited last by Romier S on November 17, 2001 at 05:38 PM]
     

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