Not The Best FPS, But Hardly The Worst
Halo is one of those games that was in development for a long time. What began as a third-person action/adventure for the Macintosh, became a Windows game. And then became a first person shooter for the Xbox. Love it or loathe it, Halo made the Xbox the success it is today.
In Halo, the last inhabitants are embroiled in a losing war with aliens known as “The Covenant”. They are a pious group that see humanity as a threat. A super solider known as the “Master Chief”, is the only hope of the Earth. In Halo you are the Master Chief. You are given a rude awaking when the fanatical aliens board your ship. From here you must fight you way past them, and escape the vessel, to land on the strange and ancient ring world known as Halo.
Halo is seen as a reward for the Covenant. The truth is soon revealed. And you know you must keep the aliens from using Halo at all costs. Or humanity will be lost.
Halo plays much like any other FPS. You explore levels kill enemies, find ammo, better weapons, etc. Health is unique in that you have a recharging shield, that protects your health, it must be drained first for you to die. The recharge takes time however. In combat you strafe, shoot, jump, and use grenades to flush out aliens. The most unique aspect of Halo’s gameplay comes from the use of vehicles. An all terrain vehicle known as the “Warthog”, a flying “Banshee”, “Ghost”, and tank like “Scorpion”. Are all at your disposal. Many vehicles can house many, and human troops will join you in the fight. And in COOP mode two human player can use the same vehicle…sweet!
Speaking of multiplayer, like most FPS of today Halo packs in multiplayer fun as well. You can play on the internet, if you run your Xbox through your PC, this however is a little complicated, so most will likely just play via split screen, or better yet system link. Modes include standards like DeathMatch, CTF, and Domination. As well as less common COOP. In which two players can play the campaign together. This is great fun, more so than playing alone.
The Graphics are very good for early Xbox. Of course later games like Doom3, Half-Life 2, and Halo 2, put them to shame. The graphics are clean and crisp. Nice lighting effects here as well.
The Music is epic and grand when it needs be. And fast and rocking when it needs be. Halo’s score really puts it’s sequel down. The sound effect are top notch. And as one would expect from a newer game the voice overs are solid.
Some levels don’t feel right. Such as the level in which you board a Covenant ship. The difficulty is unbalanced. Easy is too easy. And Hard is to hard.
The game ends with a driving stage, WTF? Oh and you know a sequel is coming. Even before Halo 2 was announced.
Halo also spawned a lot of crap ass games, like Darkwatch, Killzone, and Pariah. This is a very bad thing. Despite what others say.
The Bottom Line
Overall, Halo is an enjoyable game. And now is a Platinum Hit. You afford $20...right?