Wednesday, September 26, 2007

Halo 3. Insert clever quip here.

" "I don't know how I'm going to feed myself."R. J. BOLLARD, a freshman at the University of Washington, who said he had 73 cents left after buying the video game Halo 3."
-NY Times 09-26-07
- thanks to Amanda for this.
I never played Halo before yesterday. Once upon a time I looked down my nose at anything XBOX related - I was a PS2 man. Months ago - when the Halo hype machine started up I wasn't particularly interested. About a month ago I saw the ads I pasted earlier - scroll down. It is quite possible that they are the best ads I have ever seen or more accurately I don't know if I've ever been swayed so heavily by advertising before. Sure I want a Cracked Pepper Ranch Grilled Chicken Sandwich after seeing the commercial for it, a Guiness would taste good after I see the truck, but these are just feelings of "Gee, wouldn't that be tasty." These Halo ads instilled in me the feeling that something bad was going to happen if I didn't buy it. So completely by accident I found myself purchasing it in the store. After playing about four hours of it I have to say that it's a decent game. It's a good game but I'm not 100% sold on it.
The good:
  • The game is intense and satisfyingly difficult after a string of not so difficult games. I like the fact that I am constantly burning through ammo and actually fighting for an advantage instead of just mowing things down.
  • The enemy AI is profanity inducing mean.
  • The music is better than your average combat game - it doesn't overwhelm the sound effects nor does it drone until it's unnoticeable. It's an excellent score and I haven't heard any repetition yet. It's a bit more bass/drum heavy than brassy action. If I see a copy of it somewhere I'll pick it up.
  • I look forward to playing this game when I get home. Some games I want to play simply because well, it's something to play but Halo 3 I'm excited to play. I want to see what happens.
The not so good:
  • The graphics look great though at times the glare is a bit much. During the first mission set in the jungle the glare and mist and foliage made it kind of difficult to see much of anything - granted I hate jungle/swamp missions in any game.
  • There are certain times when the graphics look plastic. This wouldn't be noticeable if the rest of the game didn't look so good.
  • Coming off of GRAW2 the controls are a bit...rubbery. I don't know if they are supposed to be that way - if it's in character with heavy action and jumping around and fast and furious style. There's no real way to take cover without hiding completely and there have been several times I was gunned down because I was stuck on something while trying to retreat. I think that's just a problem I have with FPS.
  • The voices of the alien Grunts are fuckin' stupid. Seriously, they sound like fourteen year old mouthbreathers. The big scary aliens sound bad ass - as they should - but the Grunts sound terrible.
  • I hope there are some big ass battles coming up. I was led to believe that there were gonna be big ass battles.

When it comes down to it Halo 3 is an enjoyable experience and I am kind of looking forward to playing online...kind of.

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