"2 YEARS OF HYPE - 7 HOURS OF PLAY"2.5 starson by dslcobra
Pros: It looks great on my Shelf
Cons: I wasted $60 on the limited Edition pack
Summary: Halo 2 is probably the most hyped game ever. I mean, to a level of hype surpassing Metal Gear Solid, Super Mario 3 and all the final Fantasy games put together.
What we have here is a cleverly marketed game which fails to meet the expectations that all the E3 talk and all the sneak peek footage built up over the period of time between the release of Halo and November 2004. I don't think anyone knew when they lined up for Halo2 awaiting its release that the sequel was going to pale in comparison to the original. I must admit, after sitting down with it for 5 minutes after getting it out the box, I thought it was simply amaizing. Unfortunately, after sitting down with it for a weekend, beating it and then looking into its replay value, I must say, this was the worst waste of money I have ever participated in.
I won't bother reviewing the game because by now, everyone has played it. Many people went out and bought the rapidly obsolescing XBOX to play it. Other people will play it at a friend's house. The major inclusions of the sequel are dual wielding of weapons, mosre vehicles for multiplayer and more sound and video treats. The graphics have been upgraded with cinematic quality bump mapping and the Sound has been upgrades with all types of codecs and sound scemes to get the most out of a surround sound system or LCD TV.
Unfortunately the gameplay is boring, repetitive and its basic mechanics have been altered since HALO.
The Singleplayer experience is long winded and feels short because many levels aren't very exciting. Master Chief must now share his time with the Covenant arbiter who you must also control to see a different point of view of the game's storyline. The story ends with a cliffhanger and its anyone's guess how the 3rd installment of Halo will end since we were expecting a finale in this game but don't get it.
The levels in SP are heavily scripted at times and don't lend themselves well to freedom of exploration.
Multiplayer games have degenerated into run and gun battles where any player regardless of skill can rush up to the next and kill him prior to the same thing happening to him in turn. Then you have to worry about the X-Box Live cheaters who have figured out ways to MOD their Xbox's.
Other than that, multiplayer is an unrewarding, often boring experience where you jump from server to server battling all types of people based on the games difficult to understand stat system. I perfer the ease of use and fun of COUNTERSTRIKE.
Needless to say, HALO2 still sits unused on my shelf and it has been that way for months. I haven't played it since i can't remember. fortunately Counterstrike, which I purchased way back in Novemeber 2003, remains my favorite, XBOX game and has a multiplayer that is fun, derivative and actually requires skill to play.
I don't know if I will be jumping up to get HALO 3. Frankly, I was much more impressed by the original than this lackluster sequel. If I had known this game was this dissapointing, I would never have purchased it.