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Halo 2

aka: Halo 2 Vista

[ All ] [ Windows ] [ Xbox ]

Critic Reviews 94% add missing review

GamesAreFun.com (GAF) (10 out of 10)

Overall, though, playing Halo 2 can be a real fun experience. Nothing beats playing with friends, online, that I can't always get to because of where they live and such, and Halo 2 delivers here in abundance. But, Bungie needs to patch the balance issues, get us new maps, and especially fix the respawn issues in team games; and fast.

Nov 21st, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Gameplanet ( )

Over the last few months the hype for Halo 2 had really taken off and thankfully the game lives up to it. There are one or two graphical hiccups in the cut scenes as mentioned previously, but aside from that the game delivers on all levels. There will be some people who will buy this just for the multiplayer options and we don't blame them, but don't forget there is an excellent single player game to be played alone or with a friend, making Halo 2 one of the year's best titles.

Nov 16th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

XboxAddict (10 out of 10)

Halo was a story driven game. Bungie put the Multiplayer in as an afterthought and didn\'t think that it would become even remotely as popular as it did. People spent lots of money to buy new Xboxes, TV\'s, and copies of Halo so they could get people together and have Halo parties. This phenomenon grew into tournaments where contestants have won up to $50,000. Halo has definitely earned that kind of popularity. The Multiplayer is so incredibly fun that when you have a large group of people over playing you lose track of time and can (from personal experience) spend over 17 hours straight playing Multiplayer without realizing it.

Nov 13th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Game Shark (A+)

While Halo 2 may not be absolutely perfect, it is my firm belief that it is about as close to a perfect game as we are going to get in this generation of consoles and is definitely the best Xbox game ever. The combination of a great campaign mode along with a goldmine of multiplayer options makes for an unbeatable gaming experience.

Dec 1st, 2004 · Xbox · read review

GameSpy ( )

It's here. The long wait is finally over, as Xbox owners will be able to stroll into their local game shop on Tuesday to pick up what might be the most highly anticipated game of all time. For the last three years, speculation and rumors have been all over the internet, every screenshot and video has been obsessively analyzed, and still people want to know more about Halo 2. The game's developer, Bungie, has done a masterful job of teasing the audience, offering up just enough information to keep them clambering for more. Now that it's finally here, there's one final question: was it worth the wait? In a word, yes. In two words, hell yeah!

Nov 7th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Stuff Magazine / stuff.tv (10 out of 10)

While the Campaign mode is adequate, Halo 2 needs to be played on Xbox Live for a true understanding of how this game can change your world. Just don't even think of using the gamer tag "HotPantsBilly." He's spoken for!

Nov 9th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

The Game Hoard (7 out of 7)

Exciting multiplayer, maps and levels that draw out the best in the shooting mechanics, a layered campaign with two perspectives and plenty of diversity in your opposition, a strong selection of weapons and vehicles, and new ideas like dual-wielding all make Halo 2 such a huge step up from an already excellent first game. Some choices like the abrupt ending do impact the experience a bit, but Halo 2 manages to build both a satisfying action shooter and an intriguing science fiction universe to set it in, the player getting to explore areas built both to further that story and serve as excellent arenas for the fast-paced firefights. With most of the focus going into improvements to its predecessor’s design, Halo 2 really does feel like Halo 1 but better, which ultimately makes it an even more phenomenal shooter.

Jul 12th, 2021 · Xbox · read review

Thunderbolt Games (10 out of 10)

In a year that has brought such extraordinary titles as Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas, Metroid Prime 2: Echoes and Half-Life 2, the Master Chief still stands head and shoulders above the competition. Bungie took all of the core elements that made the first Halo a classic, removed the unwanted repetition and improved every other aspect of the game and, by so doing, created a second modern day masterpiece. To own an Xbox and not own Halo 2 would be something akin to having owned a Nintendo 64, but never purchased Super Mario 64 -- plenty of people have been dragged out into the street and flogged for much less than that. To put it simply, Halo 2 is a triumph in every way imaginable and needs to be experienced by anyone who has ever wrapped their hands around a game controller.

Nov 24th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Entertainmentopia (A)

Halo 3 is not going to be on the Xbox, but on the next console system coming out from Microsoft, I think it is currently called Xenon (like the gas) or some places call it Xbox Next. After playing the first and second Halo, I am now officially on board for any future installments. Bravo Bungie!

Dec 23rd, 2004 · Xbox · read review

PCMag.com ( )

From the moment that the first beautifully rendered cinematic scene begins until the controversial ending (which we are not allowed to reveal), you will be dazzled by and engrossed in Halo 2. Cinematic cut scenes and the story that they advance are of movie quality, with interlaced plots that twist and turn like a Covenant Elite trying to avoid your gunfire. The platform-defining game for Xbox has arrived.

Nov 8th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

GamesFirst! ( )

Regardless of its minor faults, Halo 2 is the best reason to own an Xbox so far, and makes the price of admission to Xbox Live well worth it. There are a lot of great games coming out this season, and without a doubt Halo 2 is among the best. For many Xbox owners, and gamers in general, Halo 2 will become much more than a game; it will become a way of life.

Nov 18th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

XBox Evolved (10 out of 10)

Halo was the game that put Xbox on the map and let's face it, every game in between Halo and the inevitable release of Halo 2 was filler. Not that any of these titles you played were bad - it is just that Halo was so damn good it was in its own class. Master Chief returns in Halo 2, and comes packing plenty of new features, weapons, baddies, and an outstanding presentation that no other game will be able to challenge. The minute you put the game in the Xbox, you see the Microsoft Game Studios logo going into a Halo guitar riff, and the riff plays over Bungie’s traditional theme, and if your not tearing up by this time then you will be soon.

Nov 8th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

VGcore (10 out of 10)

As a whole, the new matchmaking playlist is a welcome addition. It is always nice to inject some much needed flavor into the old Halo 2 formula. Team SWAT and BTB Slayer are two gametypes that are bound to stay around, thanks to their mix of intense combat and laid-back attitude. However, BTB Skirmish - while fun - doesn't quite capture the magic of the other two gametypes. All in all though, any new way to play Halo 2 is obviously a good one.

Jul 11th, 2006 · Xbox · read review

HonestGamers (Staff reviews only) (10 out of 10)

November 9th, 2004 was a day that shall long be remembered. Not because many of us were mysteriously absent from our usual duties, nor due to the fact that our women folk were almost unanimously told to shut up the hell up and give us some space for a few hours. No, while all that and more most certainly did in fact occur, the 9th of November is sure to be remembered for just one thing... Halo 2. For it was on this day that one of the most eagerly anticipated sequels in the history of gaming received a hype building world wide release. America, Japan, Australia and Europe. No matter where you called home, chances dictated were knee deep in an all out frag frenzy of quasi-biblical proportions. Yes, November 9th, 2004 was a very special day for Xbox fans everywhere... where were you when lightning struck twice?

Nov 16th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

The Video Game Critic (A)

On the downside, although I love the split-screen modes, some weapons take up too much screen real estate, and like the first Halo, it can be hard to determine where to go at times. The game also contains extensive on-line support. All in all, Halo 2 is everything it's advertised to be - a furiously entertaining shooter that squeezes every last bit of power out of the Xbox.

Jan 30th, 2005 · Xbox · read review

Gamereactor (Sweden) (10 out of 10)

Ingen har väl på allvar trott att Halo 2 skulle kunna bli något annat än bäst. Men såhär bra vågade jag uppriktigt sagt aldrig tro på att det skulle bli. Storyn slår undan benen på mig och lämnar mig både upprymd och andfådd. Spelkontrollen är bättre än någonsin och de nya vapnen regerar. Banorna är storslaget varierade, underbart designade och vansinnigt läckra att titta på. Multiplayerstödet överträffar alla förväntningar och grafiken är såväl tekniskt som estetiskt bländande. Bungie har återigen skapat ett mästerverk.

Nov 8th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Xbox365 (10 out of 10)

With expectations going through the roof, Microsoft breathing down their neck, and the weight of the Xbox world on their shoulders, Bungie has delivered. Halo 2 simply kicks ass. There are going to be people who nit-pick this game, as there are whenever expectations are high, but if you take a step back and look at the product that Bungie has produced, you should be astounded.

Nov 10th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

UGO (UnderGroundOnline) (A+)

It's obvious that Bungie had to put a massive effort into making Halo 2 better than its predecessor, and I'm happy to say that they've succeeded on almost all counts. Some repetitive level design still lingers, and my dream of online co-op with the Master Chief has been dashed, but Halo 2's strengths vastly outweigh its weaknesses. Halo became an instant classic, and Bungie has managed to do it yet again with the sequel.

2004 · Xbox · read review

Gameinatrix (A+)

After 3 years of waiting, its finally here! Halo 2 delivers on its promise to elaborate on the Master Chief’s adventures, the story behind the Covenant, and the true purpose behind the Halos that are homes to those weapons of mass destruction; The Flood. Besides the thrilling, though short single player campaign, as promised, is the robust and purposely designed multiplayer, which was only accessible via system link in the game’s predecessor. If you’re a fan of the series you will be in for more of the same great action that the original Halo was acclaimed for, along with weapon refinements, some GTA inspired additions, a more fleshed out storyline, as well as a multiplayer that will most assuredly keep people playing until a 3rd installment of the game is released.

Feb 6th, 2005 · Xbox · read review

Science Fiction Weekly (A+)

Just in time for Christmas, the Xbox's most iconic character, the Master Chief, returns with the release of Halo 2. The game begins with the MC just back on Earth following his saving of the galaxy in the first Halo. He barely has time to collect his medal before the forces of the Covenant, the union of alien races that believed the Halo to be a sacred construct, attack Earth itself. The MC, guided by the player, leaps right into battle, and the new game is on. For Halo 2, however, the MC is not the only death commando players will control. They also guide a Covenant hero, called the Arbiter, whose creation (shown in a series of cutscenes) introduces players to the Covenant politics that drive the story of the game.

Dec 6th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

EmpireOnline.com ( )

Halo 2 isn’t revolutionary by any means, but as the follow-up to such a sublime experience as Halo, it really didn’t need to be. The sequel’s achievement is to give a second helping of the most accomplished title on the Xbox, with just enough tweaks and polishes to make this experience as fresh and enjoyable as the original.

2004 · Xbox · read review

AceGamez (10 out of 10)

The sound effects and voice acting are as perfect as the graphics, the soundtrack rivals anything written by movie score writers like John "Star Wars" Williams and Howard "Lord of the Rings" Shore, whilst the story is intriguing and compelling, spurring you on to find out what happens next. Add in superb AI, a much fuller range of enemies to face and more weapons and vehicles with which to blow them away and you've got gaming perfection. And whilst the single player is as thrilling as they come, the multiplayer modes and full Xbox Live support are so outstanding that they will endure for as long as the life of the Xbox. When they said "Earth will never be the same" they weren't kidding. If you don't get Halo 2 then you are missing out on the best gaming experience that exists and if I was allowed to give it 11/10 on every count, I would.

2004 · Xbox · read review

1UP (10 out of 10)

Destructible vehicles, dual-wielding weapons, AI characters that drive vehicles, no more health bars, online play, stat-tracking on your computer, innovative online ranking system, overhauled graphics engine, weapon sharing with teammates in single-player, more varied environments, new locations, 15 levels, controllable energy swords, new guns, new vehicles, boarding enemy vehicles, co-op play, tweaks everywhere, celebrity voice actors, music from Incubus and Breaking Benjamin, reoccurring music tracks, seven multiplayer modes, downloadable content, 11 multiplayer maps, and so on.

Nov 7th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Extreme Gamer (10 out of 10)

Does Halo 2 really need an introduction? Almost every Xbox owner has been waiting 3 looong years for this game and it has finally arrived. In a year of big titles such as Fable and Sudeki none have even had a fraction of the hype and anticipation that Halo 2 has, 1.5 million preorders pretty much tells it all. Now the big question, can a game so big live up to the massive amounts of hype? Oh yeah.

Nov 18th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Game Informer Magazine (10 out of 10)

During my playthrough of the single-player campaign, I was constantly amazed by its intense pace. It never once falls from glory. There is no loading screen after the initial start-up. You begin this roller-coaster ride, and you just want to keep playing till you reach the end (and even then I instantly restarted the game on its Heroic and Legendary levels – which offer a whole new level of death and destruction). The dual-wielding obliteration of your enemies is priceless. The vehicle boarding creates situations where I was literally sitting on the edge of my chair simultaneously laughing and swearing as I crowned myself the greatest gamer in the world. Every situation, every fight, can be different depending on how you decide you want to handle it. This, my friends, is a sign of perfection. This is Halo 2.

Dec 2004 · Xbox · read review

GamePro (US) (5 out of 5)

Halo 2's a winner, but it's also a set-up for Halo 3. Compelling online gameplay may well be its ultimate legacy. Halo 2 is finally here, so let the fun commence. It's hard to imagine that any Halo fan is not going to be thrilled with this next chapter in the adventure. No doubt every one of them will be compelled to play through the game at all four skill levels. How many games can make that claim? Halo 2 takes a formidable action legacy and adds a new arsenal, extended storylines, and a multiplayer online challenge.

Nov 9th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Yahoo! Games ( )

Halo 2 is a near-flawless fusion of solid gameplay and excellent presentation, filled with little details that make it a kill-the-light-and-unplug-the-phone experience. Note the mushy audio when you're fighting in the vacuum of space, or the Covenant chapter named "Your Ass, My Cloven-Toed Boot." If you loved the original Halo, check out Halo 2 as soon as you can get your legs to move. If you somehow don't know what all this Halo fuss is about -- you benighted creature from another universe -- check it out anyway. Your Xbox will love you for it.

Nov 9th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

GameDaily ( )

"Just another day in hell," I think as I sit nestled amongst the green trees. I briefly glance skyward and marvel at the thousands of burning stars. In the distance, the sound of a wailing Banshee doesn't faze me, nor does the numerous explosions and rata-tat-tat crackle of machine gun fire. I calmly return my gaze to the battlefield, an empty plain of grass and brown rock. I'd seen something like it three years ago in a place called Blood Gulch, the site of numerous massacres. I'd certainly spilt my blood onto it, but I'd spilled opponents' as well.

Nov 8th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

PC Action (Germany) (1 out of 7)

Das lang erwartete Halo 2 übertrifft den Vorgänger in wirklich jeder Hinsicht. Bessere Grafik, bessere Mehrspieler-Funktion, noch spektakulärere Action und ein 5.1-Surround-Sound, dass einem fast die Ohren wegfliegen. Die Story ist zudem selbst für uns leicht verständlich. Als Master Chief nehmen Sie erneut den Kampf gegen die fiesen Covenant auf, die diesmal ein ganz besonders gemeines Ziel vor Augen haben: Die Eroberung der Erde. Vereiteln können Sie das, indem Sie gut und reichlich ballern. Das macht vor allem dann richtig Laune, wenn man zwei verschiedene Waffen gleichzeitig benutzt. Mit dem L-Trigger feuern Sie die linke und mit dem R-Trigger die rechte Waffe ab. Dass Sie wieder in jeder Menge Fahrzeugen Platz nehmen können, versteht sich natürlich von selbst. Wer bisher noch kein Xbox-Live-Nutzer ist, wird es dank Halo 2 bestimmt werden, denn im Netz ist dieser Titel schlicht und einfach Gott.

Nov 2004 · Xbox

Darkstation (9.9 out of 10)

So does Halo 2 live up to all the hype and anticipation that was surrounding it throughout its long development process? Overall Halo 2 is by far the best game to ever make its way onto the Xbox. It combines a great deal of strategy with the best FPS action I have seen this year. Any fan that hasn’t gone out to buy Halo 2 yet needs to go do that now, because this is not a game that will just be popular for the next few months, but quite possible the next couple of years.

Nov 24th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

TeamXbox (9.9 out of 10)

We came, we played, we kicked its butt, and now its time to talk about it. Of course we’re talking about the most anticipated game for the Xbox, and perhaps all of gaming - Halo 2. You’ve seen it at E3 for the past couple of years, read about it constantly in forums across the web, watched the features on everything from G4 to ESPN, and we KNOW you have it pre-ordered. In fact, over 1.5 million Xbox’ers have Halo 2 reserved which means most of us are buying, hype or not.

Nov 7th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Daily Game (9.8 out of 10)

It’s not much of an exaggeration to say Halo did to videogames what The Lord of the Rings did to feature films. Epic in scale and addictive in entertainment, the first Halo, like The Fellowship of the Ring, energized gamers like no first-person shooter since enEye. With its sequel, Halo 2, Bungie Studios is hoping to continue this feature-film comparison by delivering an experience that grips gamers more tightly than the first outing and makes them want even more.

Nov 12th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Xbox World Australia (XWA) (98 out of 100)

Like the first game, you will be talking about the end of Halo 2 for a long time to come, perhaps for the wrong reasons though this time and many gamers will feel maybe a bit ripped off? But the fantastic moments in Halo 2 far outweigh the few flaws that the game has. If you have regular LAN parties or an Xbox Live account then Halo 2 deserves a place in your games collection for years to come but while it's not the world changing event that the hype machine would have you believe it still kicks arse.

2003 · Xbox · read review

IGN (9.8 out of 10)

In the history of videogames, each system invariably lands its super-mega winner, its system-seller, its Barry Bonds. On Genesis, you rolled with Sonic the Hedgehog. On Nintendo 64 you got Super Mario 64, on PlayStation you had Final Fantasy VII, and on Dreamcast you loved Soul Calibur. On Xbox, Bungie's first-person shooter, Halo, has become the MVP for three years running -- an unbelievable unmatched streak on the Xbox. But there is a new kid in town, and strangely, you've known its name for years.

Nov 7th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

OMGN: Online Multiplayer Games Network (9.8 out of 10)

When push comes to shove, Halo 2 does neither: it creams you with a sledgehammer. Get it and play it, because if you don't you're missing out!

Nov 16th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Da Gameboyz (9.75 out of 10)

Yet as we can expect this will not likely happen on the Xbox, but rather on the Xbox 2. But for now at least, Halo 2 is a unique and sheer brilliant fighting adventure which vastly improves on the past title and which is a very, very, very big credit and asset to the Halo series. An essential game for any discerning Xbox owner.

2004 · Xbox · read review

IC-Games (97 out of 100)

The early rumours of the original Halo were of a first person shooter that Bill Gates and Co were so excited about that they bought the developers Bungie to ensure that this game appeared on the shelves on the launch day of their new console. Looking back, you can really see why Microsoft took such drastic action; Halo is a fantastic game, on which many people feel the whole success of Microsoft’s new console hinged. It has won just about every industry award going, has generated a huge fan base and is still played by Xbox owners the world over as a multiplayer game. As a result of this huge loyal fan base, Halo 2 pre sales reportedly topped 1.5 million, despite Bungie and Microsoft being pretty tight lipped about the games content, other than stating that it would fully support Xbox Live!

Nov 16th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

GameZone (9.7 out of 10)

The most anticipated. The most talked about. The most pre-ordered. The fastest selling. Halo 2 has become the game that everyone wanted it to be: the most important reason to ignore reality and escape to a world that's 100% better than your own.

Nov 18th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

XBox Solution (XBS) (9.7 out of 10)

Blasting his way back from the ruins of Halo Installation 04, the Master Chief returns in the epic continuation of the last Spartan’s story. After defeating legions of the Covenant, mankinds sworn enemy, and surviving unending waves of the Flood, John 117 and the Sarge have made there way back to Earth.

Feb 18th, 2005 · Xbox · read review

GamersMark (9.7 out of 10)

The sequel to one of the most critically acclaimed, best selling games of all time is finally upon us. I first spied Halo 2 tucked in a dark corner of the Los Angeles Convention Center at the E3 expo in 2003. We all knew it was coming, but nothing could have prepared me for what was to be shown. All signs pointed to an incredible sequel; a battle for Earth against an army of invading Covenant. I could not wait to get my hands on it, but wait I would – and wait, and wait… for what would seem like an eternity – nearly 18 full months of agonizing torture as Bungie and Microsoft leaked one measly screenshot at a time, coupled with cryptic bits of information on a beekeeping website and a strict “no comment” policy that led to untold amounts of speculation on behalf of a massive internet following. This was hype redefined, on a grand scale like nothing I had witnessed before, not even for the most anticipated Hollywood blockbuster. And on November 9th, 2004, it would finally come to an end.

Dec 2nd, 2004 · Xbox · read review

PGNx Media (9.7 out of 10)

Halo 2 had an incredible amount of hype to live up to. Bungie has crafted a nearly perfect game with this one, however, and largely lived up to the hype. The focus of Halo 2 throughout its countless showings and press demos has largely been the multiplayer. In this area, the game doesn’t falter one bit and is an ideal experience. Easily, it is the best you can find on Xbox Live. However, the single player portion is a touch repetitive, with some cyclical battles and awkward cutscenes, but they are wrapped around an immersive story. Overall though, it isn’t a game that any decent gamer should be without.

Nov 8th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Worth Playing (9.6 out of 10)

Overall, Halo 2 is a one of the strongest FPS offerings of the season in campaign mode, and one of the best internet-enabled FPS games for any platform. If you aren’t sure if you want to drop the $50, rent the game and find out if you can stay away. If you don’t have an Xbox, it’s time you had a look for yourself at the superior graphics, control and speed that this console is capable of. Is Halo 2 the best game ever for the Xbox? Possibly. One thing is for sure – Microsoft is salivating like a hungry wolf over Sony’s market share, and this fall has just been a showing of the group finally getting their ducks in a row. If Halo 2 is the best Xbox game ever, it will sell the 5 million copies, Xbox Live growth will be off the charts, and you will have spent that $50 without looking back.

Nov 10th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

XBox Front (96 out of 100)

Da ist es also, das meisterwartete Spiel für die Xbox. Während Hersteller Bungie es bis zum Release schaffte, normale Fans von der Geschichte fern zu halten, erschienen doch wieder einmal vorher kopierte Versionen. Trotzdem wurde endlos gewartet, Partys weltweit und Mitternachsverkäufe schafften einen unglaublichen Hype um das Spiel. Ist Halo 2 gut genug und der Erlöser der Spielergemeinde? Oder hat Microsoft nur einen Hype per Marketing geschaffen? Wir haben den Titel getestet.

Jan 10th, 2005 · Xbox · read review

Kombo.com (9.6 out of 10)

The reality of the matter is that anyone who was hoping for perfection is likely disappointed in the game that Halo 2 became, which is absolutely amazing, but not quite perfect. Granted many of the flaws are minor, and some entirely subjective, but the cumulative effect of these small problems is enough to affect a person’s enjoyment of the title. Graphical glitches combined with a disappointingly by-the-numbers capped by a rather unsatisfying ending hurt the single-player experience, while a lack of maps suited for smaller groups [those devoid of a broadband connection] and slightly shallow free-for-all gameplay hinder the multiplayer experience, if only very slightly. Certainly, not enough to make Halo 2 deserve anything less than the highest recommendation, but enough to bring it down from the perfection a large number of people hoped it to embody. Regardless, Halo 2 is a showpiece for the console and an engaging piece of software that is not to be missed.

Nov 26th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Game Freaks 365 (9.6 out of 10)

The future for Halo 2 looks bright. It has the ability for downloadable content in the future. This could possibly include updates to fix glitches, weapons, vehicles, and even multiplayer maps. With these, Halo 2's lifespan is extended far beyond most games. With the multiplayer fun and addicting, Halo 2 is one game MOST people won't put down for years. If people could play Halo 1 for 3 years, why not Halo 2? If there ever will be a Halo 3, I guarantee that most of you will be playing Halo 2 until its launch.

2004 · Xbox · read review

Gamers.at (96 out of 100)

Schickt euren Partner zum Shopping, kauft genügend Lebensmittelvorräte ein und nehmt euch am Wochenende nichts vor, denn der Masterchief kehrt in HALO 2 endlich wieder zurück auf die Xbox! Mit über 5 Millionen verkauften Exemplaren ist der Vorgänger Halo das bis dato erfolgreichste Xbox-Spiel überhaupt. Nicht also war nahe liegender als diesen Erfolg mit dem Nachfolger noch übertrumpfen zu wollen. Bei Entwickler Bungie war man in den letzten Jahren nicht untätig und für den zweiten Teil wurden vor allem eine aufgemotzte Grafik und ein verbesserter Multiplayermodus versprochen.

Nov 9th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Video Games Daily (9.5 out of 10)

I've never been much of a fan of first-person shooters, but Halo made me a believer. Like everyone, I hoped that Halo 2 would be able to improve upon its forebear, but it always lingered that this might be asking too much. Bungie were clearly up for the challenge. From the new weapons and characters to the intriguing (albeit occasionally convoluted) story, every aspect of the game speaks of quality and attention. The online modes are the realization of my dearest aspirations from 2001, even though the experience is not always perfect. In online games, there's no such thing. Is there room for improvement? Of course there is. But Halo 2 is here - so you know what to do.

Nov 18th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Wham! gaming (9.5 out of 10)

Halo 2 had a lot of hype to deliver on, and thankfully Bungie pulled it off. As of right now it’s the defining piece of software for the Xbox, and I have no reservations in telling people to go pick up a copy of the game. Even if you hated the original Halo, you will find something to like about Halo 2. I wasn’t a big fan of the original, and neither was fellow Editor Ryan Maule, but we both are having a blast with Halo 2. It’s not gaming perfection, but it’s the best thing to happen to the Xbox thus far.

Nov 8th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

MS Xbox World (9.5 out of 10)

Looking at the overall package that is Halo 2 Bungie has delivered an excellent blend of Action, story and multiplayer madness. Perhaps not as groundbreaking as we were led to believe or even hoped for prior to release but an immense and masterful game all the same, as they say if it’s not broken don’t fix it!

Nov 8th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Computer Bild Spiele (1.25 out of 6)

Alles in allem bleibt der coole, nahezu unbesiegbare Masterchief aber buchstäblich der „X-Boß“. Halo 2 ist die würdige Fortsetzung eines jungen Klassikers – „sehr gut“.

Dec 2004 · Xbox

Game Over Online (95 out of 100)

Is Halo 2 worth the hype it received? Well, it definitely is worth it for the multiplayer, for the augmented gameplay features and for the vocal delivery by the Hollywood talent in the title. It isn’t, however, thanks to the weakly developed storyline, similarity to the original title and the long duration that we’ll have to wait through for the continuation of the saga. But, with a little multiplayer and some solid clan competition, I think most players will manage to bide their time with Halo 2 until the next title arrives.

Nov 9th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Gamezine (19 out of 20)

Avec Fable, Halo 2 est donc sans problème l’un des meilleurs jeux de la Xbox, voire même de l’univers. Je regrette juste une durée de vie un peu légère en solo, mais le jeu en ligne promet un plaisir infini. L’immersion est totale, notamment grâce à une bande son en 5.1 qui rend Halo 2 tellement incroyable qu’on se demande même comment ils pourront faire mieux. En tout cas, une chose est certaine : Halo 2 est un jeu qui est rentré dans l’Histoire, reste à savoir maintenant si vous tenez à en faire partie.

Nov 20th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

GameSpot (9.4 out of 10)

Despite a rather short campaign and a disappointing storyline, Halo 2 is an exceptional shooter that frequently delivers thrilling, memorable, and unique moments in its online, co-op, and single-player modes.

Nov 7th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

GamingTrend (558 out of 600)

Halo 2 is pretty much the best game you can possibly purchase for your Xbox console. While it may not have the longest single player game inside, it does have one of the best multiplayer packages you've ever encountered. Buy this game now.

2005 · Xbox · read review

Netjak (9.3 out of 10)

So, finally, does Halo 2 live up to the hype? The answer depends on whether you have Xbox Live or not. As a solely single-player experience, Halo 2 is a fun ride, but could get old relatively quickly, especially due to the relative brevity of the single-player campaign. As a multiplayer experience, however, Halo 2 is simply unparalleled. No other game provides the sheer amount of variety, both in terms of game types and opponents, as Halo 2 currently offers. In that regard, everything you’ve heard about Halo 2 is true. In fact, if you don’t have Xbox Live, go out and get a starter kit along with the game; the investment you make will be well worth the enjoyment you’ll find in Halo 2.

Jan 8th, 2005 · Xbox · read review

ActionTrip (93 out of 100)

On Monday, November 8, at around 11 pm, a million people, myself included, gathered across the country to wait in line for Halo 2. There were posters, there were t-shirts, and there were many ugly people. After waiting in line for nearly three hours, I finally got home, threw it in my Xbox and waited for a new high.

Nov 12th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

NZGamer (9.2 out of 10)

The layers of the sounds of war are incredibly intense and really provoke the feeling of being caught in the midst of the onslaught. Voice work has also been taken with extra concern. No matter whose voice you're listening to be it an ally on the field or Master Chief himself you can tell a lot of time was spent perfecting the art. But the greatest portion of Halo 2's sound comes in its score. Marty O'Donnell has proven once again that despite being a full-on action game you don't need to have a cliched heavy metal soundtrack. The angelic choirs and the use of a full orchestra truly make the experience feel extraordinarily epic. In all honesty, if the score had been handled differently the game would've lost a lot of its impact. This is one game-score you'll want to purchase on CD when it's made available.

Nov 15th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Jolt (UK) (9.2 out of 10)

Okay so Halo 2 is here and it’s maybe not the ground-breaking update either fans or non-fans were anticipating. It’s certainly not the game to convert anyone from one camp to the other. It delivers a new story, new features and kick-ass multiplayer functionality, but still has exactly the same gameplay as we’ve all seen before. That won’t stop it selling in the millions though, and at the very least that’ll guarantee the multiplayer will be going strong for a long time to come.

Nov 12th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Armchair Empire, The (9.2 out of 10)

Halo 2’s much-anticipated launch tallied 2.4 million copies sold and $125 million in revenue in just the first 24 hours of its release. What’s even more astounding is it even outdid in sales the newest Grand Theft Auto game on the PS2, and the PS2’s installed owner base is at least double that of the Xbox. Totally mind-boggling numbers to be sure, but totally deserving, because Halo 2 is a magnificent gaming development achievement. Halo 2 is simply one of the best video game experiences to be had today or maybe even ever.

Nov 21st, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Fragland.net (92 out of 100)

Microsoft couldn't have asked for a better launch title than Bungie's Halo. The rookie on the console market immediately received the confidence of gamers worldwide. Well, they didn't get mine though. You should know that, at the time being, I was a huge PS2 fanboy. One-liners such as: PS2 is da best, were kept wisely behind but I still was rather skeptic about the arrival of a new kid on the console block. The reason was actually purely financial: my piggy bank wasn't filled enough. When I finally had enough "green" to buy Microsoft's Xbox, all my wrongful prejudices fell in the water. Halo was a great game and a sequel would be more than welcome.

Dec 1st, 2004 · Xbox · read review

DarkZero (9.2 out of 10)

Overall this is a game with its faults. It will intrigue new players with the hype and they will not be disappointed. As a big fan of Halo, I was smacked in the face by the ending, and it’s the single most disappointing thing in the game. But I guess I’m going to have to lump it and thank Bungie for the best game I have played since The Legend of Zelda: Ocarina of Time as the level of excitement and awe experienced was only equalled/ bettered by it, and that is no bad thing. Music, gameplay balance, variation and an exciting story keep you hooked as the time passes all too quickly. Then you just want to start again and again, but believe the hype as this is almost gaming perfection.

Nov 10th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Game Revolution (A-)

Your experience with Halo 2 is inextricably tied to your particular wants and needs from a first-person shooter. Despite a genuinely better plot this time around, the short, linear campaign and unresolved ending will certainly aggravate those hoping for a more evolved single-player game. But make no mistake " what Halo 2 lacks in its single-player it more than makes up for in its great gameplay, gorgeous delivery and flat-out addictive multiplayer. This is as good as console fragging gets. Once again, a little slice of gaming heaven from Bungie results in an easy recommendation.

Nov 10th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

GamersHell.com (9.1 out of 10)

Halo 2 has finally come out, and you get to shoot aliens, so that sells it right there. Aliens, Shooting them, well it’s not the best thing ever, and, no it’s not really groundbreaking but it has its charms. And when you tire of that there’s always that little thing called multiplayer. Yeah, it sure is a lot of fun to shoot people you know in a virtual environment, asserting your dominance over them. I like to yell, “Booya!” when I kill someone too, but my partner in crime Cory will tell you more about the multiplayer later.

Nov 18th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Lawrence (A-)

Halo 2 is a great package, obviously carried into greatness by the robust multiplayer component. The disappointment from single-player derives from the lack of length, graphical glitches and the "tweaked" physics engine, but understand that despite its flaws, it still proves to be one of the best single player experiences on a console...aside from Halo 1, of course.

Nov 8th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Gaming Age (A-)

No game is perfect, and Halo 2 is no exception. Thankfully, most of the flaws are superficial and are far less prevalent than those in the first Halo. Despite the horribly abrupt ending, it couldn't keep me from going back and playing more. Unless you have a strong distaste for first person shooters in general, there's absolutely no reason to skip out on Halo 2.

Nov 12th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Eurogamer.net (UK) (9 out of 10)

The truth is, for every hour our blood was pumping like a turbo charged locomotive through our adrenaline scored veins, there were an equal number of hours where we were bored with the unimaginative repetition of formulaic corridor based FPS trawls. On balance, we feel, the Campaign mode deserves a score somewhere that snugly sits between the two; it's an up and down game, and although it hits stellar heights, it trawls some murky depths, and for that we're not going to sit back and praise it unconditionally like some people might. But like we said all along, you probably made your mind up whether to buy it or not before we uttered a single word. The final word? Brilliant, but not enough of a progression to deserve top marks. Better than Halo? Yes.

Nov 7th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Digital Press - Classic Video Games (9 out of 10)

Still, "Halo 2" is one of those games that will define this generation. It's one of the few games this hardware will long be remembered for, not just because it has broke new ground, but because it's a well-programmed piece of art. You have to wonder how much longer it will be before Hollywood really loses major ground to this blossoming industry after playing a game like this.

Apr 22nd, 2007 · Xbox · read review

Jeuxvideo.com (18 out of 20)

Non, Halo 2 n'est pas une révolution ludique ! Il se contente d'être une suite enrichie de quelques ajouts subtils et de booster tout ce qui avait fait le succès du premier. On pourra lui adresser quelques reproches éparpillés au long du test (aspect un peu répétitif, peu de nouveautés, ennemis qui campent sur leurs positions si on fuit...) mais il offre une action qui atteint de tels sommets de frénésie et de malice qu'il se place sans aucun problème en tête des FPS toutes consoles confondues.

Nov 10th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Xbox Exclusive (9 out of 10)

Overall, Halo 2 is a very well made sequel. Every aspect of the development was handled well and with a few expectations, the game displayed extremely high production values and exhibited a great deal of creativity. The single player campaign is short and snappy, the Xbox live implementation is indeed brilliant, and the lasting impression left by the game is something that is worth experiencing. That said, it's important that the player come into the game with realistic expectations as to what a sequel should be, and what a sequel can accomplish.

2005 · Xbox · read review

videogamer.com (9 out of 10)

Ultimately, with Halo 2, we are not faced with the best game ever; possibly not even the unequivocal game of the year that its forebear undoubtedly was. However, its ability to do credit to its own lineage is also worthy of the renown in which many hold the Halo name. "Earth Will Never Be the Same Again", said the trailer. "Work Won't Matter Anymore", said the ads. And in the world of videogaming, that Halo 2 can hold its own post-hype credentials high enough to do these statements justice, is praise enough.

Nov 24th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

GameCell UK (9 out of 10)

So, for me Halo 2 delivered me a quality campaign, story, and alien combat sim that's perfect for console gaming without even touching the online area. It's only the slightest step forward from the original but in storyline, coherent design and combat, if there is better FPS fare on a console I want to see it.

2005 · Xbox · read review

Christ Centered Gamer / Christ Centered Game Reviews (90 out of 100)

Graphics are fantastic, some of the best the XBox has mustered as of yet, although during cutscenes you may see textures load onto objects on the fly. This has been commented by the creators as being necessary, in order to reduce loading time. And I welcome no loading time, I didn't even know there was a change in level a number of times! Now... I could comment on the online multiplayer, the ranking system set up, the clan system, the wonderful games I've played, the vehicles, the balance, the energy sword, the huge variation in game types, the ability of Bungie.net to track every single kill you've ever made from every position in a multiplayer game and relay it to you later online, and so on. But I won't. I will merely say that I have not had a bad game yet due to the fault of the creators. Only due to bad players.

Jun 1st, 2005 · Xbox · read review

TotalVideoGames (TVG) (9 out of 10)

The multiplayer aspects certainly add to the Xbox Live! catalogue and deserves to become the pinnacle of the online service, although Pariah looks likely to turn a few heads. From the level designs to its dense level of customisation, you can tell it’s been a subject of great thought; chuck in the frenzied, solid action of Halo multiplayer and its enough to look past the fact there’s little of anything groundbreaking here… The War on Earth is coming...

Nov 10th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Silicon-Fusion.com ( )

Overall Halo 2 is not perfect, but nonetheless it's a worthy sequel to the reason you own an Xbox. The shortcomings of the story in the main campaign are made up, in part, by the inclusion of the Xbox Live online experience - online gaming really does not get any better that this. Halo 3 anyone?

Nov 23rd, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Game Critics (9 out of 10)

It's been an almost agonizing wait for many, but Halo 2 is finally here and delivers on most of its promises in spades. The unpredictability, scale and intensity of the combat are unrivaled. Despite some relatively minor flaws, Halo 2 continues the saga with a fine campaign and a multiplayer game that is sure to continue to breathe life into the game for the foreseeable future. It's not a remarkable leap forward for the genre, but it builds well on the strong foundation of its predecessor. It took a while, but the Xbox finally has a Halo killer.

Nov 24th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

PAL Gaming Network (PALGN) (9 out of 10)

So that's Halo 2. Big, bold, and lavish. Make no mistake: this is a game of truly mammoth proportions, one that will steal hours from lives everywhere. It's an awesome example of what can be achieved with enough time, talent and money. It has it's flaws - the occasional indentikit corridor sections, the odd weak weapon. But as a whole package, little has come close on any console in the last three years - it's a game that deserves every superlative attached to it, a title so well-rounded and technically superior that it demands to be played. Which begs the question: why are you still reading?

Nov 12th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Game industry News (GiN) ( )

All in all, Halo 2 only has minor quibbles and they're not even big enough to be flaws. It's everything you want a Halo game to be, but with more added. It meets, but doesn't exceed expectations and there are some classic moments that will stand enough repeated play to see me through to Halo 3. It's not the gaming revelation that Halo gave us, but it does improve on a now familiar and much-loved formula, which earns it a 4.5 GIN gems.

2004 · Xbox · read review

X-Power (9 out of 10)

Begrijp me niet verkeerd : ik ben wederom verslaafd aan Halo 2, en het is geloof ik Ă©Ă©n van de 5 beste games op Xbox. Maar sinds de eerste Halo zijn er games die me meer spelplezier hebben gegeven (met name Ninja Gaiden en Chronicles of Riddick, om er twee te noemen), en de grens ligt nu dan ook enorm hoog op Xbox. Halo 2 is de beste FPS totnogtoe op een console, daarvan ben ik overtuigd. Maar het is geen perfecte diamant, en in mijn opinie zijn er ondertussen al betere actiegames op Xbox. Maar ach : kopen die handel ! Halo 2 is de verdiende koning van de Xbox catalogus, en ik ben persoonlijk zeer benieuwd naar het volgende project van de getalenteerde mensen bij Bungie !

Nov 19th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Edge (9 out of 10)

For all the criticisms above, few games do much better than Halo 2. And it’s fitting that we’re able to steal a line from the script to sum everything up. No spoilers here, just an epitaph, from the moment when Cortana turns to Master Chief and says this: “It’s not a new plan. But we know it’ll work.”

Nov 25th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Factornews (9 out of 10)

Loin de révolutionner quoi que ce soit, Halo 2 n'en est pas moins un excellentissime jeu d'action, le meilleur de cette génération à n'en pas douter. Servi par un scénario finement construit, un gameplay terriblement addictif et un mode Live simplement parfait, Halo 2 est un jeu à ne manquer sous aucun prétexte, si ce n'est qu'il vaudrait mieux prendre un ou deux calmants avant d'assister à l'atroce cinématique de fin sous peine de détruire ses meubles à la hache. Vous êtes prévenus.

Nov 15th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Games TM (9 out of 10)

Bungie has managed to whittle away many of the elements we felt uncomfortable with in the original game (specifically some dull level design and unappealing multiplayer), as well as adding enough polish to make Halo 2's gameplay shine. Does it live up the hype by delivering the greatest game ever created? Well, no. But as a sequel that's good enough to convert even those gamers who didn't enjoy the original title, we doubt anyone could have asked for anything more.

Dec 2nd, 2004 · Xbox

Play Magazine (9 out of 10)

Goodbye hype, hello Halo 2. If you don’t experience it for yourself, you’re missing out on the most epic, most highly produced, most strategically grounded first-person shooter on console—a ceaselessly kinetic sci-fi march through a virtual battleground so grand and complexly laid out, it dwarfs everything before it. Just as the original Halo dazzled and inspired, there will certainly be successors learning and modeling off this sequel’s undeniably vast and unprecedented achievements. And the top of these successors will eventually hit with solider, more refined success. But that will be then, and this is now: it’s time to buckle down once again with genetically empowered marine Master Chief and blast through one of the best games of the year.

2004 · Xbox · read review

Gaming Nexus (8.9 out of 10)

Easily one of the best console FPS games out. If you liked the first Halo you'll love all of the cool new features Bungie has put into the new game but if you didn't like the first one you're probably not to find anything new to sway your opinion of the game.

Nov 15th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Game Chronicles (8.9 out of 10)

Anyone who loved the original is going to love the sequel, but I fear they may also find themselves slightly disappointed if they believe half of the media hyperbole that is trying to pass for legitimate reviews. I can wholeheartedly recommend Halo 2 as long as you aren’t looking for a life-changing experience.

Jan 1st, 2005 · Xbox · read review

Mygamer.com (8.8 out of 10)

All in all, Halo 2 is a fun, fast paced shooter with lots of multiplayer action. It is not, however, the be all and end all of gaming that the hype machine has unfailingly claimed. Honestly, if you're not an Xbox Live subscriber, or don't have a few consoles to link up with your friends, then Halo 2 really isn't much more than a rental option. Perhaps if more devotion had been poured into the story campaign as was obviously dumped into the multiplayer; then, and only then, would we truly have the game of ages.

Nov 8th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Gamesmania.de (88 out of 100)

Bungie hat fast alle Erwartungen an Halo 2 erfüllt. Das Spiel ist spannend bis zum Ende, bietet tolle Zwischensequenzen und einen erstklassigen Soundtrack. Dazu noch ein Mehrspielermodus, der kaum Wünsche offen lässt und fertig ist der neue Actionhit für die Xbox. Wirklich störend empfand ich nur die wenigen neuen Möglichkeiten in der Einzelspielerkampagne. Dadurch fühlte man sich auf der anderen Seite aber sofort mit allem vertraut und hatte keine Schwierigkeiten beim etwas holprigen Einstieg. Ich freue mich auf Teil 3, der hoffentlich nicht so lange auf sich warten lässt. Böser, böser Cliffhanger.

Nov 22nd, 2004 · Xbox · read review

GameCola.net (8.6 out of 10)

Despite all it's faults, Halo 2 is a great game. I had a lot of fun playing it. Unfortunately, it fails to live up to it's predecessor, thus earning itself a lower score. But if you're a hardcore Halo fan, well, you already have this game. And if you've been MIA for the last year and a half or so, then pick it up. But for those new to gaming, or maybe FPS's in particular, this is an excellent game worth your $30, and I'm pretty sure you can still find the Limited Edition everywhere (which is misleading—it's not Limited Edition if they made four-million copies).

Jan 6th, 2006 · Xbox · read review

Press Start Online (17 out of 20)

Ultimately, it’s a thoroughly excellent, hugely entertaining videogame that, no matter how hard it tries, can’t shake off the shadow of its landmark predecessor. Of course, there will always be the enviable few who missed out the first time around - and if you’re part of that auspicious minority, you should be utterly grateful. And if not - who cares? Halo 2 is an exceedingly high-quality title that, regardless of whether you played the original, warrants a place in your Xbox collection.

Aug 29th, 2005 · Xbox · read review

Games Finder (8.5 out of 10)

Halo 2 is a must grab if you have been following the series, with enough new content within the game to keep it from being the same experience as the first time around.

Aug 13th, 2014 · Xbox · read review

4Players.de (84 out of 100)

Unter dem Strich ist der zweite Auftritt des Master Chiefs ein stinknormaler Run-and-Gun-Shooter mit nur wenigen spielerischen Höhepunkten, der sich nur durch die interessante Geschichte mit den zwei gegensätzlichen Hauptfiguren (besonders herausragend: der Gebieter) von der Konkurrenz abhebt. Aber es kann nicht sein, dass nicht das Gameplay, sondern die Geschichte den Hauptgrund liefert, weiter zu spielen. Ganz anders der Mehrspielermodus, der den Verdacht nahe legt, dass man die Kampagne als nettes Beiwerk mitliefert. Sieben Spielmodi auf leider nur zwölf Karten laden zu spannenden Gefechten, die allerdings ohne Bot-Unterstützung auskommen müssen. Wer also mit einem kleinen Freundeskreis unterwegs ist, muss wohl oder übel entweder in kleinen Gruppen spielen oder sich mit der Community anfreunden.

Nov 15th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Le Geek (4 out of 5)

This is still a very good game, and I am glad that I played it. Having played and beaten Halo 3—which takes the best from both Halo and Halo 2, yet takes very few risks—I appreciate the chances the developers took.

Mar 2009 · Xbox · read review

GotNext ( )

In the end, Halo 2 certainly lived up to most of the hype it created. From the moment the opening title screen hymn begins, the game just feels right. Despite a few minor flaws, most loyalists are bound to overlook them and enjoy the game regardless. It's safe to say that the multiplayer is where you'll find the heart of the game. Halo 2 could easily be compared to a fine cuisine dish you enjoy every weekend. While you know there's other meals on the menu that are just as satisfying, you've grown to love the same ol' stuff not to bother with anything else for a long time.

Nov 19th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Bordersdown (8 out of 10)

As a single player or cooperative (not available on system link or Live, unfortunately) experience, Halo 2 is disappointing. Things have moved on in three years, and the series is not as far ahead of the competition as it once was. Halo 2 is not the significant improvement that could have been, yet it is still important to realise just what a wonderful experience it remains.

Nov 15th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

The Next Level (USA) ( )

In the end, Halo 2 certainly lived up to most of the hype it created. From the moment the opening title screen hymn begins, the game just feels right. Despite a few minor flaws, most loyalists are bound to overlook them and enjoy the game regardless. It's safe to say that the multiplayer is where you'll find the heart of the game. Halo 2 could easily be compared to a fine cuisine dish you enjoy every weekend. While you know there's other meals on the menu that are just as satisfying, you've grown to love the same ol' stuff not to bother with anything else for a long time.

Nov 19th, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Diehard GameFan (7.8 out of 10)

While we may have to wait for Halo 3 before the story is truly completed, and the promised battle for Earth is really and truly engaged, we can take solace in the fact that what Bungie has delivered is a fantastic multplayer experience wrapped around a great single player mode whose only fault is that it ends far too soon.

Nov 22nd, 2004 · Xbox · read review

FiringSquad (70 out of 100)

Even if I take out the “I miss my mouse and keyboard” gripe that all PC shooter fans express whenever they play an FPS on a console system, Halo 2 still seems awfully flat and mediocre. The plot is labyrinthine, missions run on rails through an endless stream of lookalike corridors, action is strictly of the repetitive shoot-everything-that-moves school of design, and the art department at Bungie clearly should have tried coloring with more than one or two of the crayons in the box.

Nov 23rd, 2004 · Xbox · read review

Player Reviews

Overblown follow up
by kieran kelly (2)

The Good
Many of the things that were great about Halo are featured here again and some welcome new additions: Dual wielding is cool with lots of new strategic options, lots of new Covenent weapons, new vehicles, new baddies, some great set pieces (like the scarab assault) - and of course the amazing Xbox live multiplayer option

The Bad
I'm a big, big fan of the original and along with many was eagerly anticipating this release and I must overall I found it a disappointing experience. Many of the levels are too long and repetitive , and just don't have the replay factor and the weapons have been unnecessarily tinkered with. But really for me the games main problem is the single player story which was so great in the original has become an overblown and confusing "epic" that for me just ends up cliched and boring. For me this has kind of ruined the mystique the original game built up and dare I say it... it's become a bit nerdy!

The Bottom Line
If we think of Halo as "The Matrix" then Halo 2 is "Matrix Reloaded"....... technically better yes - but it ain't half as cool ;-)

Jan 8th, 2005 · Xbox

Fantastic but doesn't have the impact of Halo
by MegaMegaMan (2284)

The Good
Graphically this game is stunning. Back in 2003 when they showed the teaser I thought those were cinematics but they are actually the in game graphics. Its amazing. The duel wielding of the weapons and jacking cars is huge fun. The plot is probably the best ever for a First Person Shooter and the soundtrack is an extremely well done epic style of music. Master Chief has way more lines than before and now the Elites speak English. Speaking of Elites did I mention you PLAY AS ONE!?! Now lets talk multiplayer. I have many fond split screen and Xbox Tunnel Halo multiplayer memories for Halo and now with Halo 2 I can drop the split screen and Gamespy and play on Xbox Live!

The Bad
This game didn't have the impact of the first Halo. When I got Halo I was amazed and just didn't stop playing. With Halo 2 it does amaze me but my first time playing through the Halo campaign was much fun than I had playing through Halo 2 the first time. The levels in this game are insanely long and even on Normal they can be quite hard. One more little thing about Halo 2 is when you select a level you don't see the medal that tells which difficulty you have beaten the game on. That means no more showing off to friends. :(

The Bottom Line
Fantastic, Epic game. The essential for Xbox. If you havn't bought it yet get off your ass and go down to the store and Buy it, BUY IT!!!!

Feb 6th, 2005 · Xbox

O.k, I lied, I love this game.
by AkibaTechno (252)

The Good
O.K., if you're not keeping up with current events here is what is going on. UnicornLynx hates Halo, I love Halo. I wanted to impress him, so I wrote a scathing review of Halo and Halo 2 after he posted his. It was silly, sycophantic nonsense and a complete denial of my philosophy of playing what you like, not what others like.

Halo 2 is an excellent follow up to the original classic released in 2001. The idea behind the game is that Master Chief made it back to Cairo Station, which is basically a big gun orbiting Earth, after the destruction of the Halo ring and the decimation of the Covenant forces who tried to cleanse the human (and flood) infestation on it. Unfortunately, they find Earth, destroy the gun platforms and begin invading...one place. No one knows why, they just are. As Master Chief, it is up to you to defend Earth, after all, she's all we've got. But it's not just humanity that is fighting tooth and nail in this instalment you have the added benefit of seeing the events of the game also unfolding from the perspective of the Covenant through the eyes of a scapegoat Elite dubbed the "Arbiter." The Arbiter levels are some of the best in the game and include the plasma sword for the first time as a usable weapon.

The first thing you notice upon beginning the Halo 2 campaign is how much Bungie overhauled the engine in anticipation of the game's release. The texture resolution has improved, the general scale of everything is three times what is was in the original Halo and the combat has been super refined. Your jumping is less floaty, your melee attacks are quicker and more precise and you can dual wield certain weapons to form devastating combinations.

The flow of the game is a lot different to the original Halo. You begin on Cairo station, moving to Earth and finally to the Delta Halo ring that you end up travelling to along with a Covenant Battle cruiser. There is great variation in the level design of Halo 2, the meandering through identical corridors has been eliminated and back tracking is non-existent. It's a constant push forward through the Covenant forces.

There is a lot to like about Halo 2, like the increased vehicle presence, the ability to hijack vehicles and the additional weapons like the SMG's (two of these things become handheld lawnmowers) while the pistol has been replaced by a more balanced "Magnum" which is more of a sidearm than anything. Vehicles play a bigger role in the game, so to does finding alternate routes through levels (such as jumping across rooftops in New Mombasa.) Basically the way you travel through levels has had a lot more thought put into it, making the trips far more interesting than the original Halo.

Graphically a lot of new things can be found in Halo. Sun glare was present in Halo but it is far more pronounced in Halo 2, the resolution of textures is vastly increased and bump mapping has been incorporated to great effect in the engine. Building architecture is far more complicated and interested and while it provides some great eye candy it also provides players with lots of tactical options when it comes to approaching combat situations.

The soundtrack is as fantastic as ever. Martin O'Donnell knows how to produce some amazingly cinematic pieces, blending them with electronic beats and the occasional roar of a guitar to mix things up. It's great stuff. Additionally the actual characterisation of the Covenant and the inclusion of spoken lines for them means some excellent voice actors join the mix and lend credibility to their race beyond a bunch of moving targets.

The Bad
While I appreciate the lengths Bungie went to creating more complicated, interesting levels it is easy to lose track of where you are supposed to be going and occasionally get turned around. It doesn't happen very often but it's irritating when it does.

When using AI team mates on your mounted guns they tend to never hit anything, meaning you have to trust them to drive your vehicle, which is an even more hazardous prospect.

The story peters out in the end to a sort of whimpered finale that leads into a sequel. It's not a definite ending, not a huge deal, but if you don't have an Xbox 360 being able to see the conclusion is not an option for you.

The Bottom Line
Halo 2 is a fantastic game that will take you around 12-15 hours (depending on your skill level) to finish. Honest refinements to the formula such as dual wielding, the ability to hijack vehicles, the refinement of combat specifics like melee attacks, the addition of weapons like the SMG's and Plasma Sword lend to some variation in your technique and emphasis on multiple routes and exploration is refreshing.

There are few things to fault in this game and the things that I do fault are minor and niggling.

Halo 2 isn't perfect, nor is it the best game ever made. I wouldn't even class it amongst the best games ever made. It is however a good, honest sequel with great refinements to an already engaging formula.

Sep 19th, 2010 · Xbox

Everything you could want and then some
by Baza (1904)

The Good
After waiting for so long being carried along by the hype I started to wonder if I'd be disappointed by the real thing. Well I wasn't, in fact all the hype didn't do the game justice. Playing as Master Chief and as an Elite all in one game means you play two story lines at once running parallel to each other. More enemies, vehicles and weapons make Halo 2 a manic battle from start to end. The multiplayer is amazing, with stats being kept and displayed on the Bungie website for everyone who plays the game online.

The Bad
The lack of Xbox Live! or LAN Co-Op play which was rumoured, but never confirmed didn't appear in the game which would have finished the game off just right.

The Bottom Line
Think of Halo : Combat Evolved. Now think of what was missing from Halo that would have made it even better. That's what Halo 2 is like.

Nov 16th, 2004 · Xbox

Plus 111 player ratings without reviews

Contributors to this Entry

Critic reviews added by Big John WV, Yearman, jumpropeman, Wizo, lights out party, nullnullnull, Flu, Patrick Bregger, Jeanne, Cavalary, Sciere, CalaisianMindthief, Cantillon, yenruoj_tsegnol_eht (!!ihsoy), Alsy, Tim Janssen, Jacob Gens, Tracy Poff, Spindash, Jess T, Alaka.