Friday, 17 September 2010
Review: Halo Reach
Years ago, I posted an angry review about Halo 3. I didn't like it much but saw hope and potential in what was achieved by Bungie. Halo 3 was technically incredible but lacked the Halo feel and omitted a lot of features we all wanted to see at the time in 2007.
Beyond Firefight, Reach delivers in all other areas. Matchmaking based Multiplayer feels even more polished and responsive than it did with Halo 3 and I suspect Halo: ODST (although I never played that one). It's fast at finding games but is still not quite as fast as the Call of Duty system. However, it's more sophisticated and essentially better. Any game mode you can think of is available and some you probably can't. Combined with the infinite potential for custom games, I'm going to go as far as to say that this is probably the most complete Multiplayer package I've ever seen in all my years of gaming online.
If the online side is not your bag then fear not. The Single Player (or 4 player co-op) Campaign mode is truly an incredible achievement by Bungie. I'm actually only half way through it, attempting Legendary (the toughest difficulty) in my first play through. However, I've seen enough to know this is the greatest Campaign of any Halo game. The word epic comes to mind. Every level is epic. There are no boring stages and you feel as if you could replay every moment again and again. I even loved the space combat mission.
Reach also offers the same Theatre mode and Forge mode we saw in Halo 3. Forge is improved and now allows for insane levels of design. You can essentially now make your own level. Your only limitation is the vast canvas of a map you get to use as your template for placing things down.
In summary, this game is as close to a flawless product as a gamer is ever going to see. 2010 hasn't seen much in the way of particularly memorable titles so far but Halo Reach has changed that. For my money, this is not only game of the year but also one of the greatest games I've ever played.