Some Humpday Challenges are executed as part of our ongoing (and often fruitless) quest to find worthy Halo: Reach competitors. Some are played for honor and glory. Last night’s Humpday didn’t travel down either of those two well-worn paths. Instead, they went the way of admiration and respect. And a buttload of rockets.
Elements of Team Onyx returned to bolster an hodgepodge assemblage of employees and two hired guns. Gasca told me that deploying TTL L askan was totally cheating. I say otherwise. He’s one of ours now, even if he still rolls deep with Tied the Leader during his off hours. So, suck it Dave!
We didn’t name this crew – they bestowed the name upon themselves. Before the match got underway their fearless leader, RAZE 2 RUINZ, mentioned that they’d been so wrapped up in Firefight recently, he wasn’t sure if his squad would put up much of a competitive fight. Since we were just coming off a bye week ourselves, I figured that would help keep things nice and even.
Boy, was I wrong.
Game 1 – Team Snipers on Boardwalk
The Quick and the Dead.
This match was a great reminder that my reflexes have atrophied to an almost unresponsive state. I couldn’t seem to land a single shot, but it didn’t matter. Team Onyx went to work, and this one was over well before the bell rang.
Before we started the match, Drew noted that he had just come off of a double Steaktacular in a warm up game on the same map and game type. He was worried that he’d exhausted his store of luck prior to playtime, but this time practice paid dividends.
Shot in the back!
Never tell me the odds!
Insult, meet Injury.
It seemed like there were some audio problems with some of Team Fire Fodder, so we didn’t get much of the pre-game vocal stylings that usually happen. We just launched into Team Snipers on Boardwalk. Some of Team Onyx was scared because they have lost a number of times on Boardwalk. I assured them, this time “everything was gonna be k.” The game turned out really well for us, not so much for our real life firefighters.
While I don’t normally dive into this play list, hearing Tomo mention that he had just had enough alcohol to make himself a better player (or think he is a better player) gave me hope that we could pull it off. #HaloGogglesFTW
Oops, we forgot to set the score to win to 100 instead of the default 50. It ended up not hurting us though so, no harm.
And I finally won a game on Boardwalk! Definitely enjoyed playing this game.
Snipers was my idea - even though I was personally very rusty, I liked our lineup for it. The map choice was concerning, but I was optimistic, particularly after Harrison and I dominated that exact pairing in a warm up match. In the end, everyone did their job, and it set the tone for the next two games.
I spent the first half of game one looking for a place to be (hide) where I wasn’t being shot at, they met me at two-tree early and kept pressuring us for positions the entire game. It’s probably lucky that we had the low score snafu because they were poised to start making their comeback just as the game ended.
Game 2 – Team Rockets on Hemorrhage
You have chosen, poorly.
Typically, Game 2 is selected by the challengers, but a confluence of NAT issues and outright indecisiveness led to some confusion on the part of Team Fire Fodder. After what felt like two and a half hours, they passed the helm back to me and we ditched the Long Rifles in favor of some much bigger guns.
Rockets with unlimited ammunition with a side of Golf Club might fit the description for what some consider a palette cleansing game mode. I say this is staple Halo. From the moment we spawned in, our curious gorge was instantly covered with a warm blanket of comfortably explosive carnage. Nearly everyone went with Jet Packs and the race to 100 kills was peppered liberally with laughter on both sides of the gulch.
Man, I love a Rockets game. People flying around in Jetpacks raining down death is a thing of beauty. The Golf Club secondary ended up being really funny in the up-close battles. The firefighters score in this game was a little better, but they still were feeling a bit beat down.
8v8 Rocketfest was probably my favorite. It’s just so much fun to watch your rocket scream across the map only to be deflected by another explosion and jink into the side of a warthog that just got loaded up. I was thoroughly impressed with how many times I was blasted out of midair, on the ground, or in vehicles.
I remember Urk trying to call out some strategy for us to pull away in this game and I thought to myself “Really? Strategy for rockets?”
Editor’s Note: aim for the head!
In the aftermath of Game 1, the firefighters decided that Team Rockets might help level the playing field, and we agreed to go with it. Rockets and jetpacks are so awesome together that this gametype belongs in matchmaking. Tomo and I led the way to another solid Bungie victory paved with hilarity, explosions, and betrayals.
So many explosions. Jetpacking with rockets makes for some awesome battles, especially if you get close enough to your enemy midair and switch to the “Golf Club.”
The second game was a blast. (See what I did there?) Grassy knoll saw the most action, with plenty of Jetpack skirmishes and even a couple of sweet Golf Club kills. Our attempts at vehicle pushes into their base area were met with a firm resistance of the rocket variety. As fun as the kamikaze hog runs were, the highlight of this game had to be watching both teams cross map rockets randomly hitting opposing Jetpackers midair.
Game 3 – Elite Slayer on Countdown
Poppin’ and Lockin’.
Our Game 3 strategy was cemented before we ever set foot in matchmaking for the evening. Since we didn’t have access to any of our opponents’ gamertags, save for RAZE 2 RUINZ, we didn’t know just how stiff our competition would ultimately be. We figured if we’d lost the Snipers game on Boardwalk, they’d have an already handy advantage in the skill game, and Elite Slayer, for all of its fast pace shenanigans, is still a curiosity for many players. And it features tons of Armor Lock, everyone's most favoritest AA.
Halcylon assumes the position at the start of the match.
And Team Firefodder returns the favor.
For the final game, we chose one of our favorites, Elite Slayer with 16 people on Countdown. Serious chaos for serious times. I love the Plasma Pistol punch out, and this game gave me many opportunities to fulfill that desire.
Elite slayer is just so much fun. The amount of explosions, pink mist, and Armor Lock going on just makes you laugh at the madness ensuing around you. #PopAndLock
Editor’s Note: #tweetingtoohard
Elite Slayer on Countdown was a madhouse, as expected – there was locking, rolling, and a chaotic festival of explosions around every corner. Fortunately, this team apparently thrives in such conditions, and our Dinos completed the sweep.
Since we had already won the first two games now it was time for some klowntown, as Urk calls it. Rolling around on Countdown with 16 players makes things a little hectic! Weapon of choice was mainly melees and plasma grenades.
Managed to get hands on the sword first in game three, and slap chop our way to an early lead. Add a dash of Evade, double serving of Armor Lock and all the stickies you can eat, then bake for 5 minutes @ 360 degrees on Countdown. Elite slayer is the perfect recipe if you’re planning a get-together this holiday season.
Another Wednesday. Another victory for our highly-skilled Bungie Humpday Team. But as much as we do enjoy the sweet afterglow of yet another night of total domination, the real win for our squad was the opportunity to play with such a great group of guys. Even as we were thanking these fine fellows for their upstanding community service, they were busy heaping praise on our nations veterans – marginalizing their own bravery by pointing out the sacrifices of others.
Thanks for everything you do, Team Fire Fodder. It was our pleasure to play some games with you.
I’m glad we got the chance to play with these guys. They were really good sports, and put up with our shenanigans. We’re lucky to have them protecting the city of Seattle. Our hats off to you.
I was so glad to play with some of our nation’s finest. It really was a treat to have them put out some of our digital flames.
All of us really enjoyed playing in this week’s Humpday. Our local firefighters are great sports, and while we’re busy making games, these heroes are out saving homes and lives. We owe you guys some huge thanks, and even though you kept extinguishing our flames, we knew you were just keeping us safe.
Thanks again to the firefighters for playing with us. We had a great time and appreciate everything they do for our safety!
Lionel gets the last words:
Firefighters are heroes, real life heroes that are willing to risk their lives to save ours. It was an honor to get games with these gentlemen.