×

Welcome to the Slashdot Beta site -- learn more here. Use the link in the footer or click here to return to the Classic version of Slashdot.

Thank you!

Before you choose to head back to the Classic look of the site, we'd appreciate it if you share your thoughts on the Beta; your feedback is what drives our ongoing development.

Beta is different and we value you taking the time to try it out. Please take a look at the changes we've made in Beta and  learn more about it. Thanks for reading, and for making the site better!

An Early Look At Halo: Reach

Soulskill posted more than 4 years ago | from the go-go-gadget-arms? dept.

XBox (Games) 107

KatanAlpha writes "Based on all the information coming out about Halo: Reach, it seems that Bungie's basic philosophy has been: 'The sequels to the first Halo sucked. Let's fix that.' We've already seen a little bit of this with Halo: ODST, wherein Bungie returned to some of the core elements of Halo gameplay and ditched many of the changes introduced in Halo 2 and 3. Reach seems to continue this idea while trying to invigorate the franchise by introducing greatly improved graphics and additional gameplay mechanics."

cancel ×
This is a preview of your comment

No Comment Title Entered

Anonymous Coward 1 minute ago

No Comment Entered

107 comments

Additional gameplay mechanics (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31242112)

But will it have dynamic terrain?

Re:Additional gameplay mechanics (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31244250)

Will it have a complementary Reach Around included in the game play?

The original Halo also sucked (5, Informative)

alphabetsoup (953829) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242132)

Some parts were fun, I admit, but mostly the levels were extremely repetitive. I especially remember the Library level - where you had to do the same thing over and over - move through hall after hall which looks exactly the same and enemies which behave the same - I have never felt so bored by an FPS.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (5, Informative)

Stormwatch (703920) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242356)

Actually, the original Halo [youtube.com] was radically different from what was ultimately released -- a third person shooter, set in an open and persistent world, with online multiplayer. But then Microsoft bought Bungie, moved the whole thing to the Xbox, and... rumors back then said the Xbox just lacked the power to handle the ambitious original design.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (2, Informative)

somersault (912633) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242404)

Yep. I remember being really excited when I first read about Halo (way back when it was still being made for Macs), but when I eventually tried the real thing, it was crap. Same level of boringness as the original Unreal. IMO the only people who would make such a big deal about games like Halo and Resistance: Fall of Man etc are people who haven't played decent FPSes like Half-Life.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (4, Insightful)

BeardsmoreA (951706) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242756)

IMO, as someone who moved from Doom through Quake to Half Life and then Halo, the only people who make a big deal about the tedium of Halo are those who've never sat down IN THE SAME ROOM, at the same screen, as a bunch of friends, and had an enjoyable couple of hours blasting things together. Halo stood out for its built in co-op for me. Sadly 2 and 3 didn't really add anything to the promising start.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

zach_the_lizard (1317619) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242934)

The multiplayer was OK, but the rest of the game was -- and is -- mediocre. The main "feature," if I can call it that, is that the marketing droids managed to make a big deal out of a second rate game. It's not bad, but it's not the religious experience that it has been made out to be.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

Bakkster (1529253) | more than 4 years ago | (#31243694)

I'd say the main feature was that it made it a lot cheaper and easier to sit 16 people in a basement and play an FPS. Rather than 15 people lugging their desktop, CRT, keyboard, and mouse to your place and setting up a bunch of tables to play CS, you could have 3 friends bring their XBox with 4 controllers, a different 3 friends bring their TV, and another 9 people just need to show up ready to get sniped by someone with a pistol. It took the LAN party from a large undertaking for everyone involved to something where over half the people could just show up with Cheetos and Mountain Dew and still be able to play all night. Like Goldeneye before it, it was the 'hardcore' console party game.

So, you get millions hooked on Halo, and it doesn't matter that the sequels are totally different. They remember playing Halo, most get it for the nostalgia, and they stay for the still incredibly large player-base.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

AdamThor (995520) | more than 4 years ago | (#31245522)

I'd say the main feature was that it made it a lot cheaper and easier to sit 16 people in a basement and play an FPS.

This is still what I do with a bunch of friends. I think we're all ready to move on from Halo, but there is a distinct lack of 4-player per console shooters out there for us to migrate to. I understand that there is one or two, and we've started putting more effort into figureing out what is available...

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 4 years ago | (#31243692)

I have played Halo co-op before, it didn't strike me as anything special. I've had much more enjoyable local multiplayer elsewhere, both co-op and vs.. as far back as the late 80s or at the least the early 90s on SEGAs, Amigas etc. Playing with friends always makes a game more fun. The only reason Halo was such a success is that it was the only console based FPS of the time to even offer local multiplayer and co-op.. there were a few years where games developers just seemed to stop doing that for whatever reason.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

WraithCube (1391567) | more than 4 years ago | (#31246960)

the only console based FPS of the time to even offer local multiplayer and co-op.. there were a few years where games developers just seemed to stop doing that for whatever reason.

I'm not really sure what years you are talking about. Timesplitters and Perfect Dark were both released in 2000 for the PS2 and N64. Gamecube and xbox were released at the end of 2001. Halo I guess would have been the first one released for the xbox, since it was released with the launch. Timesplitters 2 was released in 2002 for the xbox, gamecube, and PS2, had a ton of multiplayer modes, weapons, character stats, bots, and a mapmaker. Tribes Aerial Assault was also released in 2002. I also seem to recall various bond games released over that time period as bond games seem to keep getting made in order to recreate the success of goldeneye. The only way Halo might have been the only unique game of the time with that is if you wanted a good FPS during the first few months the xbox was released and that was the only console you were looking at.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 4 years ago | (#31248110)

Well, I was more into my PC FPSes back then and used my PS1&2 for other types of game so I didn't hear about anything but the 'big' games (and I didn't even know Tribes was available for consoles) - but it seemed to me that during the 00s it was increasingly prevalent to have games with online multiplayer but no local multiplayer. Thankfully things seem to be getting better again. Maybe I was just looking at the wrong games.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

ooshna (1654125) | more than 4 years ago | (#31249264)

Tribes Aerial Assault was also released in 2002.

I played Tribes since Starsiege:Tribes and it was the only good one. Everyone after that was a shell of its former self

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

Hatta (162192) | more than 4 years ago | (#31245474)

I've had many enjoyable hours sitting down with friends blasting things on the same screen. Only it was Perfect Dark. Halo didn't exactly suck, it just wasn't anything awesome. Perfect Dark was awesome.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

billcopc (196330) | more than 4 years ago | (#31245622)

Yep you nailed it. All three games, I played through the campaign with a buddy (split screen) and we had a blast. The pacing was great, every few minutes there was a tense moment where we had to think together to pull through, and it rarely got boring. I even felt Halo 3 was too short, seems like we plowed through it in no time at all.

When I played them again on my own, I found each game a bit tedious overall. The levels tend to feel too large and I'm not a fan of massive fights where they drop four dozen of little alien bastards every ten minutes, and the flood reminded me of the HL's headcrabs, which I equally hated.

I'm still eager to see the next instalment, but that's because I know my old buddy will be calling me for some split-screen alien carnage.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

Ihmhi (1206036) | more than 4 years ago | (#31248508)

Microsoft seems to have a history of taking promising games and then ruining them. My group of friends were the exact same way with Perfect Dark on the N64.

I hear about the next Perfect Dark on the Xbox and I am understandably excited - but like most modern gamers I've been burned by previous purchases and so I wait it out.

If they hadn't fucked that game up so horribly I would have been an early adopter.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

Backward Z (52442) | more than 4 years ago | (#31249484)

I had a friend with four TV's, four Xboxes, four copies of Halo and sixteen controllers in his apartment who would regularly have Halo/Halo 2 throwdowns (he was a manager of a GameStop).

Countless hours playing Halo at his place later and I'm still not wowed. We all pretty well agreed, the only reason we played Halo all the time was because there wasn't anything resembling an apt suitor on Xbox. Nobody denied that PC FPS's had WAY more to offer (there's nothing Halo did except for the recharging armor that Bungie didn't steal from Half-Life).

It's a slightly-above-average FPS that just happened to drop in exactly the right place at the right time. I have more fun in 4 player L4D and L4D2 on my PC over the internets than I ever did playing Halo in the same room as my opponents.

The campaign level design was extremely lacking. Copy+paste does not good level design make. Putting another player in a co-op situation does nothing to fix the abhorrent level design.

That, and OMG everybody moves so damn slow! I can't stand it!

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

iainl (136759) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242758)

I've been back playing Half-Life 2 recently, in fact. While there are many wonderful things about it, the actual combat doesn't grab me anything like as much as Halo, in single-player at least. The rechargeable shield innovation of Halo is far, far preferable to playing the tedious games of health and ammo management that the Half-Life games use to implement difficulty, because the latter encourages rote learning through quicksave too much for me.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

indiechild (541156) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242802)

I've always felt that the basic combat in the Half-Life games sucks badly -- it just doesn't feel compelling. It's the characters, overall story and other gameplay elements that make the HL series great.

Games like Call of Duty 4 and Modern Warfare 2 on the other hand have great, satisfying combat systems, but awful storylines.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31242812)

Exactly. Halo is good for beginners and casual players who aren't very good at games. Even in the so-called "Legendary" mode, I could finish Halo with my eyes closed.

Personally, I can't stand the gameplay in Halo. It's far too sluggish and doesn't require any skill beyond unload clip and run away until your shields are charged.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

grapeape (137008) | more than 4 years ago | (#31243680)

Well I guess its a good thing that casual gamers far far outnumber the fps nerds. Bungie seems to know its market no wonder the game has done so well..its actually accessable to the masses.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31254232)

Britney Spears is accessible to the masses also.

And that goal is fine since Bungie/Microsoft are only in it for the money.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31243696)

You are very wrong. Half Life is a boring game anyway.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

somersault (912633) | more than 4 years ago | (#31243902)

If you define "boring" as "I have to actually engage my brain", then I agree with you.

I would much prefer to replay Half-Life or any of the expansion packs than sit through the boring-ass MW2 single player again (MW2 multi-player isn't bad, but I hate how you can't disable the auto-aim.. then again since I tend to get most of my kills with the knife, it doesn't matter so much).

Re:The original Halo also sucked (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31244018)

If you are trying to make a point about games that require the engagement of your brain, Half Life is an extremely poor choice. Debate the gameplay merits in Halo and Half Life all you like but please don't try and argue which is the more cereberal.

I agree that MW2 isn't much cop though.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

DNS-and-BIND (461968) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242706)

The "original Halo" was just an updated Tribes. Man, what a good game. Pity that MS bought Bungie and Halo became famous...it's a watered-down Tribes.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

dredwerker (757816) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242964)

The "original Halo" was just an updated Tribes. Man, what a good game. Pity that MS bought Bungie and Halo became famous...it's a watered-down Tribes.

Tribes was great - I did love the flying about and the choice of style quick and no armour, heavy and slow or in between :) Halo is about multiplayer mainly and it helps to have played the singleplayer game through so you know what its all about and how the weapons work.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

KDR_11k (778916) | more than 4 years ago | (#31244456)

Was it reallyor was that just your imagination soaring from the few bits of information? I've seen people get excited about a "new Tribes" quite often whenever a team xPS with jetpacks appears, even if the final result has little in common with Tribes. Examples I can think of where people complained afterwards that the game was not like Tribes are Section 8 and Global Agenda and those are just the recent ones.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242914)

Do the Myth II and "original Halo" share the same engine? I remember playing around with the Myth II map editor and couldn't help but notice that Halo looked shockingly like the Myth II maps I used to make.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

theArtificial (613980) | more than 4 years ago | (#31254692)

I recall the lament one of the team members stating that this movie was entirely scripted. Some of the builds prior to this one had a much more ambitious take on weapons (the game featured several dozen). I have a Voodoo 550 still in the box on my shelf for a never realized "classic" game machine that has been completely obsoleted by DOSBOX and VMs that has Halo artwork on it.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

Jezza (39441) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242468)

This isn't really fair, the original Halo is the first FPS I can think of that had vehicles that the player could use. It is also the first time I can remember computer controlled players being useful (well manning the turret in the Warthog is what I'm really thinking about). There was also a plot, with a couple of surprises. I also particularly enjoyed the "mad dash" Warthog ride at the end - the best ending of any of the Halo games.

Now it's true that a theme of all the Halo games has been fight across a level, then turn around and fight back across it - but let's cut them some slack here, the levels were pretty nicely designed (you've picked the weakest) and there was a lot of variation in both what the player had to do, and the level design.

Halo has influenced FPS design, the original wasn't perfect, the multiplayer was very lacking for example, but a very good game indeed.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31242626)

Battlezone II had vehicles years before Halo existed.

The truth is, anyone who thinks that Halo did something first or best is speaking from very limited gaming experience.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

KDR_11k (778916) | more than 4 years ago | (#31244496)

To be fair Bz '90-something had vehicles that you spent the majority of your time in, only rarely did you leave the vehicle. Same goes for G-Nome. I hear a game called Codename Eagle (predecessor of the Battlefield series) had the modern balance of infantry combat with a few vehicles mixed in.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

Useful Wheat (1488675) | more than 4 years ago | (#31246136)

Shadow Warrior was made in 1997, and it had vehicles you could use. You had to find repair kits scattered throughout the game, and you could use them to repair a tank, and one other vehicle.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

am 2k (217885) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242566)

You forgot about the part where you had to go through a whole level a second time, just backwards...

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

Squeakstar (1671062) | more than 4 years ago | (#31243254)

That feature did smell a bit of re-using assets, but for me the original halo was defo the best storyline and epitomised the bungie philosophy of short bursts of condensed gameplay fun, run and gun. The flood constantly chasing, er, literally flooding was manic as chuff as great fun - something the sequels seemed to miss out on IMO. Storyline was weak in 2 and 3 and whatever nonsense characters were babbling just went in one ear and out the next, and especially Halo2, where it just seemed to end and i wished i'd paid more attention.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

TheFakeMcCoy (1485631) | more than 4 years ago | (#31243430)

The story to the first HALO game was great. I found my self staying up until 3am and going to with 3 hours of sleep. I couldnt wait to find out what was going to happen next. I think on the first mission I actually cheered when I found the lost marines. Since then the books have been pretty good, however the in game storyline has become more of disappointment with each game. I'm actually ashamed of ODST, wish almost feels like a cheap knock off of one of the books. I hope that they can actually come up with an enjoyable game rather than continue to dishearten fans of the original and try to squeeze every dollar. Seriously, access to the Reach Beta by owning ODST. You should get odst free and access to the reach beta just for having played the 2nd and 3rd games respectivly.

Re:The original Halo also sucked (1)

AmigaMMC (1103025) | more than 4 years ago | (#31248596)

As a matter of fact the 2nd book was too game oriented as well. While I highly recommend the first book "Halo: The Fall of Reach" If you have not read it yet you're in for a treat, this book is a prequel to the game and tells the origins of Master Chief and the Spartan II project before they even had a Mjolnir armor. Great read (and the 3rd book, Halo: First Strike) is also a great read.

The sequels sucked? (4, Insightful)

Toonol (1057698) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242142)

I don't think they really did. They just didn't do anything vastly different than the first game. Slight bump in graphics, tweaking mechanics a bit... disappointing, I suppose, if you are expecting massive improvements between games. Maybe more disappointing if multiplayer is your focus, instead of the story and campaign.

Sometimes I think the industry is to quick to rebuild a game from scratch for the sequel, when the players really would be happy with just more story, more levels, more characters. We didn't need the special effects in the Empire Strikes Back to be better than Star Wars; we just wanted to see what would happen next.

Re:The sequels sucked? (2, Informative)

fyrewulff (702920) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242216)

Slight bump in graphics? .. have you actually looked at screenshots of Halo 1, 2, 3, and Reach side by side?

Halo 1 didn't even support bump maps on bipeds, only scenery!

3 is leagues ahead of 2, obviously because it's on much better hardware.

Reach has more polygons in the Assault Rifle first person model than an entire Marine had in Halo 3 due to improvements to their engine.

Re:The sequels sucked? (1)

zach_the_lizard (1317619) | more than 4 years ago | (#31243230)

Reach has more polygons in the Assault Rifle first person model than an entire Marine had in Halo 3 due to improvements to their engine.

Despite that, the gameplay will likely not have improved by that much. It'll likely be the same, only maybe we can dual wield swords or something like that now.

Re:The sequels sucked? (1)

KDR_11k (778916) | more than 4 years ago | (#31244524)

Reach has more polygons in the Assault Rifle first person model than an entire Marine had in Halo 3 due to improvements to their engine.

That isn't very surprising, the first person models often have the most details of any asset in the game because they're going to be right in your face all the time. It wouldn't even be surprising to find that a game actually put more polygons into its first person view weapons than its characters.

Re:The sequels sucked? (1)

SuiteSisterMary (123932) | more than 4 years ago | (#31244662)

I watched the first Halo: Reach ViDoc the other day, and they had a side-by-side of the marine model from Halo 3 and the marine model from Halo Reach and it was pretty damn impressive. Of course, anybody can whip up a video, but I'm looking forward to it.

Re:The sequels sucked? (1)

jadin (65295) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242310)

when the players really would be happy with just more story, more levels, more characters

As long as the price is scaled accordingly. I doubt anyone wants to pay full game price when it should be in the expansion section.

Re:The sequels sucked? (1)

Jezza (39441) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242496)

I think this all depends. There are some games that are so good, that you're going to buy them no matter what. Also what if the game is far longer than the original (in a good way) does it matter that it doesn't fundamentally change things? The cost of producing a game is at least as much tied to the "digital assets" as the "engine". When you think about it, most modern games use the same underlying technology anyway, I'm not sure I'm persuaded by your argument.

All sounds a bit "new Coke" to me...

"Story" People vs. Game-Playing People (0)

RobotRunAmok (595286) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242474)

I admit to being amused -- in the nicest, gentlest, least-condescending way possible -- by the "video game story people." I'm just not fathoming that folks are playing games like "Halo" or "Bioshock" or whatever for their stories. I know that they *are*, because I read about it here on slashdot, and somebody always hauls out "Planescape: Torment" as if it were "Hamlet," and it all leaves me in head-shaking mode. Comic books have better written stories than these games -- and I mean no slight against comic books. Is it all relative, sliding scale, are folks just happy to playing a game with more of a "plot" then, say, "Duke Nukem" or "Serious Sam?" Or are the game stories actually regarded as being "good" as far as written stories go?

When I want a story, I read a book. When I want to play a game, or venture into some escapism that requires a modicum of physical engagement, I play a videogame. When I want the escapism without the physical component, I'll watch a movie like Star Wars. I'm seeing more and more, however, that that is "just me," and I'm not sure how I feel about that...

Re:"Story" People vs. Game-Playing People (1)

danny_lehman (1691870) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242740)

there are a series of books about halo.. i think theyre written by eric nylund. they are decent reads.. and i may be wrong but the plots in-game happen in between some books. so its no surprise there are 'story people'

Re:"Story" People vs. Game-Playing People (0, Troll)

RobotRunAmok (595286) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242804)

there are a series of books about halo

There are a series of books about "Barbie" and the "Disney Fairies," too. Doesn't mean they're any good, just means there is a targeted audience for the follow-on merchandise.

And I read the first "Halo" book, about a year and a half ago, just to see if there had been a sea change in video game book tie-ins. There was not a single idea or character or plot line in the book that has not been done better -- and done to death -- in legit science fiction. Thirty years ago.

I'm a fast reader, but life is just too short...

Re:"Story" People vs. Game-Playing People (1)

Antique Geekmeister (740220) | more than 4 years ago | (#31243050)

True. There have actually been a few _good_ books about video game worlds. The "X-Com: UFO Defense" book by Diane Duane was actually fun to read, both consistent with the gameplay and lending color to the characters. Of course, Diane is also the woman who wrote "Spock's World" and "The Romulan Way", which also preserved the structure of someone else's fictional world but actually explored the people in it. I highly recommend her books to fans of worlds she's written books for.

Don't feed the troll. (2, Informative)

jadin (65295) | more than 4 years ago | (#31246560)

All my friends who got into the game didn't bother with the halo books... they read what arguably inspired halo. Even an elitist snob might enjoy it.

"Ringworld is a Hugo, Nebula, and Locus award-winning 1970 science fiction novel by Larry Niven, set in his Known Space universe and considered a classic of science fiction literature. It is followed by three sequels, and ties into numerous other books set in Known Space. Ringworld won the Hugo Award in 1970,[1] as well as both the Nebula and Locus Awards in 1971."

Re:"Story" People vs. Game-Playing People (2, Insightful)

delinear (991444) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242950)

For me it's about enhancing the feeling of immersion. The story doesn't have to be revolutionary (and that's just as well, because they're almost always not), it just has to be enough to encourage suspension of disbelief and give some level of empathy with the character(s). You're never going to get a story that comes close to the best of the written word because the two media are playing to their own strengths. In a game, you have to have the "game" parts which obviously detract from the story parts - Hamlet wouldn't be so good if five out of every six pages was just dedicated to Hamlet beating waves of enemies in sword combat, or exploring locations for health/ammo pickups.

Bioshock did this really well, IMHO - sure the main plot was nothing we've not seen before, but that's not where the feeling of immersion came from. It was more from the information you discover and piece together on your own, exploring and finding journals, tracking the journeys of characters you never actually meet in the game, discovering the origins of the characters you do fight/help in the game, it made the game world feel more real (dispite the slightly silly delivery mechanism of tape recordings dotted everywhere, which made if feel like these people experimenting with prototype tweeting). I know people who played through the game as a straight FPS without exploring this rich back story, without even realising it was there, and that's fine if the FPS experience is all you're after, but for people who want to feel a bit more involved with the game there was a much deeper experience to be had.

Re:"Story" People vs. Game-Playing People (1, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31243192)

The point of looking for a good story in a video game as opposed to a movie or a book is that the game is interactive. For some games that just means more immersion -- you don't just follow the main character, you *are* the main character -- but in other cases the story itself is interactive. Picture reading Hamlet and getting to the part where he's yelling at the queen and Polonius cries out from behind the curtain -- and you get to choose whether to take the "renegade" route and stab whoever's behind the curtain or take the "paragon" route and just demand the guy identify himself. Imagine how different the story would be from that point on. You would want to go back and read the story again and make different choices just to see how events unfold differently. There are games like Dragon Age and Mass Effect that really do put that much power over the storyline in your hands.

Re:"Story" People vs. Game-Playing People (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31245080)

just make sure you don't bone up the quick time event

Re:"Story" People vs. Game-Playing People (1)

XxtraLarGe (551297) | more than 4 years ago | (#31243928)

I admit to being amused -- in the nicest, gentlest, least-condescending way possible -- by the "video game story people."

Most game stories are pretty formulaic, but some games have extremely engrossing plots to them. Admittedly, these are far and few between. Halo was not one of them, but the original Marathon from Bungie was. The exchanges between the on-board AI's as well as the archives you could access at random terminals made for a very deep storyline. The other game that had an excellent story was Deus Ex. It successfully married almost every conspiracy out there from the Illuminati, to the Knights Templar, Majestic 12 and Area 51. The game had quite a few plot twists, partly that were dependent on what actions you took, and took you to a number of locations, from New York to Paris to Hong Kong. There were times you could chose to kill someone (like agents Navarre or Gunther), and that would change the game play experience in the future, since certain weapons and upgrades might not be available to you. Much like Marathon, Deus Ex used things like books or stray notes to give you clues as to the motivation of people in the game.

Re:"Story" People vs. Game-Playing People (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31254746)

Marathon was a cheap rip-off of System Shock.

Re:"Story" People vs. Game-Playing People (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 4 years ago | (#31244508)

Yes, it's true that very few people play primarily for the story. But a compelling or interesting story (and, more particularly, setting) can set a game apart from its peers. "Knights of the Old Republic" was a pretty straightforward RPG, judged exclusively by its gameplay. But the story really set it apart. Ditto for Mass Effect, Half-Life 2, Bioshock, etc.--all pretty unremarkable if judged on straight-up gameplay.

Re:The sequels sucked? (1)

Blakey Rat (99501) | more than 4 years ago | (#31245850)

Halo 2 is one of my favorite games ever.

True, I didn't care much for Halo 3... but I think it's a long stretch to say Halo 2 sucked.

Halo: ODST (4, Informative)

FinchWorld (845331) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242178)

No it didn't change anything, it was pretty much a Halo 3 expansion which cost more. It didn't really play much differently (For a non augumented human, an ODST is still strong enough to beat a brute to death with his rifle).
Halo 2 was worse than 3, but they were good games, not great. After the first time round theres not much else to it (unless you hunt easter eggs etc.). The only reason we still play Halo 3 is because its one of the few games that support 4 player spilt screen and LAN at the same time, so with a couple large TVs and 2 consoles we can quickly play 3v3/4v4, or have 2 per screen for co-op. Its odd such games (Im looking at you Call Of Duty) allow 4 player split screen, but as soon as you try a lan game your limited to 1 per console.

Re:Halo: ODST (1)

Xest (935314) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242386)

I actually really liked ODST, in fact, it's my favourite Halo game so far (played 1, 2, 3, and Halo Wars).

Halo has always been cool because of it's coop/multiplayer support, and yet I found ODST's campaign so good when played alone, because it added so much to the 'lone marine' storyline. In fact, it was one of my favourite games of last year- I preferred it to MW2's messy, rushed, disjointed single player storyline for example. I'll admit when I played through it a second time with a friend in coop it wasn't quite so good because playing coop just took away completely from the lone marine storyline, and removed all need for tactics- dying doesn't matter in coop, you just respawn.

I didn't find the ODST campaign really any shorter than Halo 3, playing it solo on legendary it lasted as long as Halo 3 did on coop for example, in fact I'd say it lasted longer due to the tactical nature of fighting frickin' hunters and stuff as an ODST by himself for some parts of the game. It wasn't more expensive- £29.99 for ODST vs. £39.99 average price for Halo 3, and it included Halo 3's multiplayer + all the map packs and such too. It had as much content as 99% of full retail games, and yet retailed for £10 cheaper.

The only real problem I have with ODST is the fact that their survival mode had no matchmaking and required you to find 3 friends with it. Apart from that it was an excellent package IMO - fair price, great single player storyline, fun coop survival mode, Halo 3's multiplayer in full.

Re:Halo: ODST (1)

Jezza (39441) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242548)

One of the things I think is key to the enjoyment of the single player in ODST is something it forces on the player - you get different weapons as you "step into the boots" of the others in your squad. It's a little thing, but you're forced to use different weapons, and often different tactics. Once you've played it, you CAN blast through it pretty quickly (the sequence with Dutch in the wildlife park CAN be amazingly quick - and seeing how fast you can do that is fun in itself) but there is a lot to see and do. It doesn't feel quite as meaty as the other Halo games, but as you say that is reflected in the price. In a lot of ways ODST is technically the strongest Halo yet. It's also the most underrated of the Halo games.

Re:Halo: ODST (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31248530)

> Its odd such games (Im looking at you Call Of Duty) allow 4 player split screen, but as soon as you try a lan game your limited to 1 per console.

Not really. It's because you'd end up with groups on the same screen automatically coordinating against singletons.

(And on the outright malicious end of things, you'd have hacks that take advantage of the extra player data going to the same box).

Well that's a lot of leaps of logic (3, Interesting)

fyrewulff (702920) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242200)

Bungie has never said the sequels suck. However they are very open about what they did wrong and right in their previous games.

As it stands, Halo 3 is still the best multiplayer experience. Halo 1's multiplayer is a glitchfest with maps that were made by a two man team with a guy that just learned how the extrude tool worked the day before. It is unbalanced and only two of it's maps supported vehicles (so of course, everyone just played those two maps). The maximum amount of Xboxes that can join a LAN is 4 so if you want more than 4 people playing, somebody is gonna have to splitscreen.

Halo 2 was leagues better but it suffered from animation glitches and the ability to escape from maps.

Halo 3 refined the balance of 2 and also fixed all the animation glitches and map escapes. After playing it, there is no reason to ever go back and play Halo 1 multiplayer beyond for a laugh. Single player I play once in a while, but the multiplayer is so bad now it's not even funny.

The removal of dual wielding doesn't even change things that much since people hardly do it in Halo 3 anyway. All it really means is that dual-able weapons will now get a damage buff, like they already did to the Needler (went from dual-capable in 2 to a single weapon in 3)

Reach so far appears to be continuing to build upon Halo 3's multiplayer design and balance. Heck, a Bungie employee is already quoted as saying that the weapons aren't going to be drastically tweaked or anything from their Halo 3 versions.

But then again, I'm probably one of the few people that started with Halo 1 in 2002 and don't worship the broke as hell pistol from 1 (which again, was actually a bug that couldn't be fixed in time for ship).

Re:Well that's a lot of leaps of logic (1)

thinkloop (1386669) | more than 4 years ago | (#31243460)

Why is the pistol broken! It was a great utility weapon and a sad day when I found out how much they crippled it in the sequels...

Re:Well that's a lot of leaps of logic (1)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 4 years ago | (#31244798)

It's broken because it was never meant to be that powerful. When you have a whole map full of people running around with the default pistol, ignoring the rifles and other (presumably more powerful) weapons, you know there is a problem. Ever seen a war with everyone carrying around .38 revolvers? All you whiny bitches complaining about them "crippling" the pistol in later versions are just mad that you actually have to work for it now, with properly balanced weapons.

Someone at Bungie (1)

AHuxley (892839) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242248)

played Marathon?
If you sell out and have to make creative cuts as your running at 640p due to MS hardware 'cost' cutting...what do people expect
Now the 'brand' name wants to tart things up with violence, plot, bestial alien languages and unique battles?
Note the total lack of words pointing to 'world size' or 'more monsters' just more tinkering efforts.

Re:Someone at Bungie (1)

Lemming Mark (849014) | more than 4 years ago | (#31245626)

According to other accounts I've read, the engine has been upped to support much larger distances between co-op partners (i.e. less of the annoying teleport effect) and to support up to 40 full enemy AIs, which is something like double the Halo 3 engine. So don't write off the world size and monster count just yet ...

Actually (1)

manekineko2 (1052430) | more than 4 years ago | (#31249690)

Actually, the video linked in the article did address both world size and more monsters directly. They're going for sand box style battles, with more of the feeling of vastness of stepping out of the ship in Halo 1, with more monsters and allies.

Slashdot as a sucky games site (3, Insightful)

Aceticon (140883) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242262)

<RANT type="no-more-pre-release-marketting" class="big">

Bungie is supposedly going to do yet another Halo, only this time it's supposedly going to be much better than the previous ones and here's an article with what the producer's PR/Marketoids think should be said on what it's supposedly going to be like.

Reminds me of all the articles we used to have a couple of years ago about the latest and greatest new software that was coming out: it usually turned out to be neither that greatest, as ground/breaking or the seamingly flawless experience the software house's Marketing people had described it to be for the preview.

Now we have the same type of bull as game previews in Slashdot, kinda like the almost-paid-for, page filling pap which is the standard fare of the "Previews" section of the large (and mainstream gaming industry fanboy) game sites.

Until we actually have a post by someone with hands-on gaming experience on the game, maybe we should save the space for more interesting news, like say, new developments in the area of waste treatment - more substance and less perfumed s*it.

</RANT>

Re:Slashdot as a sucky games site (1)

Reapy (688651) | more than 4 years ago | (#31245142)

Actually one of the most interesting news about REACH that I read is bungie can FINALLY FINALLY do another game that isn't halo. I have loved almost everyone of their games, especially myth, the fallen lords, and I have always felt they had ideas outside the norm and executed them perfectly. I can't wait to see what they can cook up when finally unsaddled from generic halo FPS games.

Re:Slashdot as a sucky games site (1)

DocHoncho (1198543) | more than 4 years ago | (#31252390)

Maybe I misread your comment but the new game is to be called Halo: REACH and so you shall keep waiting for that non-Halo game from Bungie.
Sorry Charlie.

Re:Slashdot as a sucky games site (1)

Reapy (688651) | more than 4 years ago | (#31252844)

What I read was after halo reach is released, is that they will next be doing an original IP game that is not in the halo universe.

swordfighting! (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31242270)

anyone want to swordfight with me? It's really fun, it's when two guys pull down their pants and whip out massive boners. THEN, they touch penises iuntil the other guy goes soft. Ready!? One TWO THREEEE!

"Sad" news ... Günter von Gravenreuth, dead a (-1, Offtopic)

ArsenneLupin (766289) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242436)

I just read some "sad" news on the Internet - The infamous lawyer Günter Freiherr von Gravenreuth [gravenreuth.de] was found dead in his Munich student club this morning. He gave himself the deadly shot just as police special units looking for him were busting down the doors. I'm sure nobody in the Slashdot community will miss him - even if you didn't receive any of his "Abmahnungen", there's no denying his contributions to popular culture. Truly a German icon. He will not be missed.

Re:"Sad" news ... Günter von Gravenreuth, dea (1)

grapeape (137008) | more than 4 years ago | (#31243840)

Well he spent most of his adult life using coward tactics to confront pirates and crackers (I remember him harrassing the C=64 scene in the 80's). Only fitting he choose the cowards way out when confronted with his own crimes.

Bungie's Strong arm tactics. (1, Flamebait)

Erythros (140001) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242510)

- Release a game that becomes very popular (See Halo 3)
- Create new maps as DLC(good thing)
- Remove the ability to play previously playable online multiplayer games without purchasing new maps.
- Charge for said maps
- repeat 3 times
- Overhype a Halo 3 disk with 1 extra campaign and 3-4 new maps and charge $60.00 for it, again removing multiplay online options to current players without purchase of said disk. ONLY, worth the price if you never owned Halo 3. Unfortunately the Majority of ODST owners already owned Halo 3.

Thankfully I took the advice of an honest reviewer about that suckfest ODST was for the price and waited until the 3 extra maps came out as DLC for only 800 MS points.

It is one thing to look towards DLC (Downloadable content) for extra revenue, but to strong arm your customer base into this is just wrong.

Re:Bungie's Strong arm tactics. (1)

Lemming Mark (849014) | more than 4 years ago | (#31245644)

I think they should have charged less for ODST. That said, I bought it new as I didn't want to wait. I think I've had / am having my moneys worth with Firefight mode alone so I'm not upset, even though I think the decent thing to do would have been to sell at a reduced price.

It was a printing error (1)

scdeimos (632778) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242586)

...it seems that Bungie's basic philosophy has been: 'The sequels to the first Halo sucked. Let's fix that.'

That's because the L lost a fleck of ink and came out I.

Actually, I really enjoyed the first Halo. I felt extremely ripped off at the end of Halo 2, though, since it felt like I'd only gotten to play half the story. I skipped Halo 3 altogether as a result.

Meh! (1)

ThirdPrize (938147) | more than 4 years ago | (#31242754)

Since I gave up my xbox live gold account I haven't looked back. As a result I don't think I will be bothering with Reach. I played the Halo 3 campaign and that sucked. Move to next room, shoot some bad guys , get some ammo. Rince and repeat. The story didn't make much sense and Master Chief is a fairly unlikable hero.

Re:Meh! (2, Interesting)

IgnoramusMaximus (692000) | more than 4 years ago | (#31243698)

The story didn't make much sense and Master Chief is a fairly unlikable hero.

Do not even get me started on the "back-story" ... a fascist government that kidnaps kids (replacing them with clones who are sabotaged to die young - and painfully - so that parents do not catch on to the scheme) and puts them through a decade of torturous experiments, maims and kills most of them -- and somehow those kids through some kind of twisted "Stockholm syndrome" become great champions of the fascists, aka the "Good guys", against a bunch of fanatical religious nuts, aka the "Bad guys".

Then again, this is a Microsoft product and so they probably think fondly of this kind of future where corporations like Microsoft get to do this to kids under auspices of "defense of freedom", "protecting the Dumb Masses from Terrible Foes" or some other such utterly self-serving crap.

It is also quite a sad testimony to the current goings on in the American culture that there is so many budding fascists who identify with such ends-justify-all-means "heroics".

"Unlikable" is a rather large understatement.

Re:Meh! (1)

Culture20 (968837) | more than 4 years ago | (#31244074)

Do not even get me started on the "back-story" ... a fascist government that kidnaps kids (replacing them with clones who are sabotaged to die young - and painfully - so that parents do not catch on to the scheme) and puts them through a decade of torturous experiments, maims and kills most of them -- and somehow those kids through some kind of twisted "Stockholm syndrome" become great champions of the fascists, aka the "Good guys", against a bunch of fanatical religious nuts, aka the "Bad guys".

Wait, so the Govt. could clone the kids, but they went through extra steps to steal the *real* kids, and make the clones die quickly? Did they make a video game that Uwe Boll can't ruin the script of when he makes the movie?

Re:Meh! (1)

SuiteSisterMary (123932) | more than 4 years ago | (#31244600)

It's not that they made the clones imperfectly, it's that the clones they made were unviable, due to the technology not being there. They could clone, but the clones would not survive. So, that was worked into the plan.

Any of the Halo books written by Eric Nylund are actually pretty good reads. The novelization of the original game is crap.

And to your parent poster, I doubt that Microsoft had anything to do with the story. And lest we forget, Halo was originally to be a Mac game....

Re:Meh! (0, Troll)

IgnoramusMaximus (692000) | more than 4 years ago | (#31245004)

And to your parent poster, I doubt that Microsoft had anything to do with the story. And lest we forget, Halo was originally to be a Mac game....

The books were commissioned by Microsoft as part as their "brand tie-in" campaign for Halo. As far as I know Bungie had no book deals for Marathon and had no plans to do so for Halo before Microsoft bought them. Also the game itself had rather ambiguous references to the SPARTAN program, never defining its nature. All the attempts at glorification of the truly repulsive, vicious, sadistic, fascist nonsense is mainly in the accompanying books.

Any of the Halo books written by Eric Nylund are actually pretty good reads. The novelization of the original game is crap.

Nylund for example explicitly thanks Microsoft insiders at Microsoft's "Central Command" and its "Intelligence Officers" etc for "guidance" in the foreword of his Halo books, pretty much openly exposing what sort of thinking is going on at Microsoft where wanna-be fascist idiots are fancying themselves as a military-style operation, not leaving much to imagination or speculation.

Re:Meh! (1)

SuiteSisterMary (123932) | more than 4 years ago | (#31246844)

Bungie is known for having written a rich and detailed backstory, and having a very detailed 'bible [wikia.com] ' for Halo. Eric Nylund was not coming up with things at the behest of Microsoft. I'm sure he gets to invent minor stuff what needs inventing, but somehow I doubt 'the origin of the Spartans' would fall into that.

Re:Meh! (1)

IgnoramusMaximus (692000) | more than 4 years ago | (#31247040)

Bungie is known for having written a rich and detailed backstory, and having a very detailed 'bible' for Halo.

Much of which, if not all, happened after they were assimilated by Microsoft. The game was originally quite different in design and scope and underwent a considerable evolution under Microsoft's direction (and also due to limitations of Xbox). It is no coincidence that all the dolts at "Central Command" Nylund mentions in his books are long-time Microsoft employees in charge of various aspects of Microsoft gaming division.

Re:Meh! (1)

SuiteSisterMary (123932) | more than 4 years ago | (#31249104)

I guess we're just going to have to agree to disagree that Microsoft is using video game tie-in literature to espouse the usefulness of morally indefensible 'ends justify the means' human experiments.

Re:Meh! (1)

IgnoramusMaximus (692000) | more than 4 years ago | (#31249508)

To be accurate its not "Microsoft" which is an abstract entity, although it is convenient to speak of it that way, but the whole corporate culture of which Microsoft is an example and which attracts such individuals and enables them to rise in power by rewarding their sociopathic attitudes. The end result is that these people end up thinking of themselves as superior (after all their traits made them "successful" at the expense of all around them who are not as twisted as they are) and so they proudly promote their way of thinking in part as self-justification, in part as ego-stroking and in part because they actually believe themselves righteous and "good".

History is full of idiots of this kind, in fact pretty much every oppressive social order, all wars, atrocities and campaigns of persecution were instigated and conducted by the personalities just like them.

Re:Meh! (1)

HarvardAce (771954) | more than 4 years ago | (#31244906)

Wait, so the Govt. could clone the kids, but they went through extra steps to steal the *real* kids, and make the clones die quickly? Did they make a video game that Uwe Boll can't ruin the script of when he makes the movie?

It's been a while since I read the books, but my recollection is that the cloning process was not very good and resulted in the early death, which is why they couldn't use the cloned kids in the program (otherwise they could just find the best and make an army of clones).

Re:Meh! (4, Funny)

elrous0 (869638) | more than 4 years ago | (#31245140)

Would you have felt more comfortable playing as a pacifist running like hell from the aliens the whole game, trying not to crap yourself?

Actually, that might make for an interesting game.

Re:Meh! (1)

IgnoramusMaximus (692000) | more than 4 years ago | (#31246114)

Would you have felt more comfortable playing as a pacifist running like hell from the aliens the whole game, trying not to crap yourself?

There is a loooong way from the SPARTAN program to any "pacifism". A regular military force defending their homes from an invader is not "pacifism" by any means. SPARTAN program, as described in the books, crossed every line to the point that it essentially gave up any reason for its opposition to Covenant to exist as both sides became just a different faces of the same ugly coin and both became enemies of everyone sane everywhere. This simple fact, that giving up freedom and justice in order to "defend" freedom and justice is one of the most counter-productive things ever, never seems to register with various authoritarians drooling after power and "hero" status.

By all tokens the SPARTAN "graduates", if such a thing existed in real life, would behave quite differently from the wet dreams of the jingoists writing this drivel, they would have every reason to hate the UNSC and none to hate the Covenant, as at the time of their "graduation" all the torture, mutilations and murder were committed on them by the UNSC and none of them even saw anyone from the Covenant. Given this simple fact, in real life a majority would end up as insurgents and terrorists out to exterminate their torturers and all those who benefited from their misery and not quite a few would outright welcome the Covenant's attack side with the invaders (who would gladly welcome them and supply them with equipment and provisions and who would take care to make sure that they never offend these powerful allies, thus becoming vastly superior "Good Guys" to the vicious UNSC "Bad Guys" from the perspective of the SPARTAN victims).

But in actuality these infantile fantasies are so bothersome because the sick morons that think them up would actually try them (as long as it was on people other then themselves) irrespective of any probability of "success", as is evident by the general attitudes of various war-mongering dolts that can be seen everywhere.

Screw that (-1, Flamebait)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31243336)

Halo sucks and so does M$; buy a PS3 you n00bs

More $ 4 M$ (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 4 years ago | (#31244044)

So?

This is just more money for slick willies beast. Stop buying anything from them, their subsidiaries, and their partners if you can avoid it.

All these libertarian weasels, say "the market will fix itself!" No it won't; these guys are so bid that when one product is a failure, they will leverage another market segment to snuff out the competition. Then things will go back to normalcy; and back to being garbage.

What do you mean by "sucked" ? (1)

Majinace (1748452) | more than 4 years ago | (#31249230)

Number of copies sold for... Halo 1: 5 million Halo 2: 8 million Halo 3: 8.1 million Halo 3 ODST: 3 million Looking at Halo sales, I can't see how you can assume that Bungie thinks Halo 2 and 3 'sucked' in comparison to the first one. I think you could make a better argument that they broke things by returning to the 'core elements'

...and KatanAlpha speaks for whom? (1)

nataflux (1733716) | more than 4 years ago | (#31254760)

If you are implying that the Halo series "sucked", then you probably weren't around to witness the series unfold, or are just suffering from the "its popular, therefore it sucks" syndrome, or a little fanboyism, or all of the above. While Halo 2 may have been the blatant sell out that it was, it was still enjoyable and it pioneered the matchmaking concept as well as provide a platform for competitive gaming to thrive on the console market. The Halo series is a landmark in the first person genre, just the same as say Doom, Quake, and the Half Life series, of course its quite possible, probably guaranteed that without Microsoft's backing, Halo wouldn't have done as half as well as it did in sales. The Halo canon, while it may be a cookie cutter epic, is quite easy to comprehend and paints a fairly enriching struggle between humanity and the covenant. Halo is an advanced form of the "shooter-in-a-tube", it is an improved version of marathon, just as marathon is an improved version of Pathways into Darkness. Implying that it was meant to be more complicated than that only reveals that you weren't there to watch it grow, similar how say an adolescent child today who grew up playing Gears of War will find the first Halo game to be simple or "crappy".
Load More Comments
Slashdot Account

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?

Don't worry, we never post anything without your permission.

Submission Text Formatting Tips

We support a small subset of HTML, namely these tags:

  • b
  • i
  • p
  • br
  • a
  • ol
  • ul
  • li
  • dl
  • dt
  • dd
  • em
  • strong
  • tt
  • blockquote
  • div
  • quote
  • ecode

"ecode" can be used for code snippets, for example:

<ecode>    while(1) { do_something(); } </ecode>
Sign up for Slashdot Newsletters
Create a Slashdot Account

Loading...