If hype could be measured on a scale from 1-10, Halo 3 would be – a 22! This is as big as it gets in the world of gaming; very few games can boast of the cult following that Halo commands. Halo is a game of the masses. On the other hand, there are many critics, who believe that the game is over-rated.
Halo 3 is out in the market today – and I thought before I publish a review in the coming week, I should talk about its launch in India and the first impressions it evokes. Now I don’t want to sound like a PR executive for Microsoft, but they launched Halo 3 in style, and deserve accolades for that. At a ‘small’ event for reviewers, they let us try out Halo 3 for over an hour – and it was great! Although 1 hour is very little time to derive any conclusions, from what I saw, the game looks promising. Read on for more details.
The Campaign Mode
We started with the single player campaign: the game starts exactly where Halo 2 ends. Now let me tell you that the first frame of the game that I saw looked rather mediocre – I mean the graphics looked good, but nothing exceptional. Could be my eyes are still stuck on Bioshock. But as you play, you realize that the game engine has more to it; the light and particle effects are impressive, and it looks good even when you zoom in to scout distant areas.
The game starts off, and there’s action within a few seconds. You get a small lesson to teach you the basics – and off you go!
I’ll discuss the plot and more game details in the upcoming review. For now, it’s this: the guns look nice – lot’s of detail on them. However, I wasn’t impressed with the character modeling, as I could see jaggy edges on a few characters. A friend of mine pointed out that it could be the LCD (a 26" Samsung Bordeaux), playing the game at 720p. I find that hard to believe, because I’ve played all my games on a 32" version of the same TV: all of them looked gorgeous. But do we really buy Halo for its single player campaign? I mean no doubt that it’s a great campaign, but isn’t it the multiplayer that we really wait for? So let’s discuss more important things in some detail: the multiplayer.
The Multiplayer is addictive and great to play. We started off with a Co-op story mission – basically the same single player campaign but played in split-screen. It was great but not close to what we experienced when we played a 4-player split-screen multiplayer death-match. The game is fast, intense – lots of things happening all at once. The maps are well defined, with many to choose from. You’ve maps for 2-4 players, going up to 8-16 players. There’s a range of options in guns and vehicles in the multiplayer, so you’ll never be stranded with mere basic weapons.
We even tried a team death-match, which is easy to start, and which gets you right into the action. There are 2 sides: red and blue. In short, it’s a simple run-and-shoot mode of gameplay, so you don’t have to save any vital points or carry a flag around.
I’d like to go on… but I’d rather save that for the review. For now, what I’ll promise you is that the game is worth buying for the multiplayer itself.
Go Get a Copy
This is going to be a great game: it’s a complete package. There’s a good story campaign, a lot of multiplayer options, and a whole lot of goodies. You can also pick up a limited edition, which comes with many extras. For more details, for now, just wait for the review!