- The Ruckus 2010
- Intrepid Legendary Member
Name's John. I'm a 21-year-old firefighter/EMT from lolhio who doubles as a die-hard Halo fan. I've been enjoying the franchise since 2001. My favorite iteration of Halo would have to be Halo 2 simply because I never got to experience the joy of a full-on Halo: CE LAN.
If you have any other questions, feel free to ask.
Oh yeah, and boot Zome.
Posted by: Lashghost
Yeah, I agree with The Ruckus 2010 and the OP on the multiplayer, it is covered in crap. I can't take the same opinion with you(Ruckus) on the campaign, though. I felt Halo 4, while it was visually stunning, didn't present the true Halo feel that I had gotten in the previous games. Which, I suppose, is to be expected with the addition of a new developer and new story.
I have to ask you: What makes a Halo campaign good?
I got a feeling of mystery and excitement when I played Halo: CE.
In Halo 2, I felt that the game was about protecting Earth while trying to defeat the Covenant while you play as a general bad-ass that you gotten to know as the Master Chief in Halo CE.
Halo 3, very clearly had the same feeling as in Halo 2, with the added incentive "Finish the Fight!"
Halo 3 ODST was more of a mysterious/ominous game where you tried to learn the whereabouts of your squad. This was the first game that you weren't the Chief.
Halo Reach: You are still not the Chief, and you know Reach falls. I didn't have any real incentive to be completely invested in the campaign. Even if it was not my favorite, I still had fun playing it.
Halo 4... When I played it, the beginning felt like Halo: CE. There was that mystery, however the more I played, the less exciting it was. 343i had left most if not all the back-story to it's terminals, which took away some of the mystery for me. Sure, you could go to Waypoint and watch them, but that takes you away from playing the game(even if you read the books,which I had, the game feels it is lacking something). The game's intent was to make the Master Chief feel like a human, rather than a robot. However, the Chief never felt like a robot to me, and the overall message the game left me with was that the Chief is not the bad-ass he once was.
So that is my thought on the situation.
Halo 4 was superior to Halo: Reach's campaign in that the story was more tangible throughout the campaign and you what you were being told in the story was reflected in the campaign itself. In Reach, they had to tell you that the planet was falling, yet you never really saw it on the scale you should have. Even when New Alexandria was being destroyed, I still felt like the Covenant was being pushed back, not vice-versa. Although, New Alexandria came the closest to portraying the desperation of the situation. The story was just bland. There was virtually no characterization of any of the Spartans which left you feeling no impact when they started getting picked off like Whack-A-Moles. The only part of the story that was left was as follows:
-Covenant are on Reach
-lol u r died
The campaign objectives from mission to mission were just boring and unengaging. Nearly every single one ended with you pushing a button. On the subject of button pushing, for the record, I was not a fan of all the button pushing animations in Halo 4. They got annoying fast. The campaign and the objectives therein were vastly more story-driven than Reach. At least, that's how it felt for me.
Even the supposed novelty moments like flying the Sabre fell flat to me. The first half of that section seemed forced and entirely unnecessary. No part of the flying section was challenging either. I did Legendary solo for my first playthrough and did not die once in the Sabre. The combat was not engaging (and in fact became rather mind-numbing) because most of the enemy fighters were off fighting your brain-dead allies. It was just a shooting gallery with the occasional "Fox, look out behind you!" moment.
Conversely, the Broadsword trench run in Halo 4 was infinitely more exciting than Reach's Sabre section. It felt like there was purpose to doing what you were doing 100% of the time, and the experience was kept interesting with story elements being peppered in there. Examples being Earth appearing as you emerge from slipspace and the dialogue (particularly pertaining to the Didact's ship being unaffected by MAC barrages) exchanges. The music alone added a whole other depth to the scene that Reach's Sabre encounter just could not touch.
There was also the issue of the core gameplay. 100% bloom in the campaign in Reach was not fun and was actually frustrating in most cases. Oh, you just popped that Ultra's shields at range? Well too bad because while you were letting your bloom reset he evaded into cover. There was also the slow movement speed that got me. Armor abilities didn't play a big role either (except in that jetpack section, which could have been absent from the game and still had the same effect) which just furthered my dislike for them. In Halo 4, I found a use for jetpack without having it forced on me like in Reach. The AA's were never forced on you in H4. Yeah, they'd be given objective markers, but you could swap them back as soon as you picked them up which made me feel like I had a choice in my gameplay experience. In Reach, if I picked up a jetpack, I'd be sacrificing what little movement speed I had with sprint because your default running speed is pretty slow. In Halo 4, not only is the default movement speed faster, but you also have sprint at all times.
The campaign on the whole was simply not memorable for me in the slightest and just felt like a chore as opposed to Halo 4 where I felt like everything I was doing had a distinct purpose within the context of the story.
There are threads upon threads describing why the Reach campaign was so ass far better than I can at this current point in time. But that's a brief overview of my opinion on the campaigns.
Oh, and I wholeheartedly agree that the H4 backstory should have been explained within the game itself as opposed to relying on the novels and terminals the contents of which you couldn't even view in-game. As somebody who has read the novels, I had a pretty good idea as to what was going on with the backstory and how it related to H4's story, but they should have done more to make those elements apparent to those who have not read the novels or any other media I'm forgetting where the backstory was explained.
[Edited on 11.25.2012 5:40 PM PST]