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Games Entertainment

First Review of Halo 369

Posted by michael
from the high-altitude-low-opening dept.
The Halo Guy writes: "Voodoo Extreme has posted the first review of Halo, the new first person shooter from Bungie Software that's an Xbox launch title and will be ported to the Mac and PC later next year. Included are some very cool high resolution Xbox game captures too." I guess buying the bundle will be a little less painful if you get good games with the system.
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First Review of Halo

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  • by Trem (190016) on Friday November 09, 2001 @09:45AM (#2543033)
    Speaking as an underpaid person who can't afford every new system out there, I think I'll stick with PC ports. Most stuff eventually makes it there anyway.
  • The next Doom? (Score:1, Insightful)

    by xdangavinx (534619) on Friday November 09, 2001 @09:46AM (#2543037) Homepage
    Is it just me, or does anyone else have a hunch that this might take off the same way Doom did sometime back?
  • Re:The next Doom? (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Junks Jerzey (54586) on Friday November 09, 2001 @09:58AM (#2543099)
    Is it just me, or does anyone else have a hunch that this might take off the same way Doom did sometime back?

    Doom was a revolution. Halo, sadly, is Another Quake/Unreal type game with slightly better graphics. Business as usual.
  • by sql*kitten (1359) on Friday November 09, 2001 @10:13AM (#2543178)
    Suck it up, Bungie. MS stole your soul and your ability to innovate.

    Alternatively, MS provided the hard cash and commercial expertise to keep Bungie in business to work on wildly-overambitions projects.

    Not everything in life is a conspiracy by Microsoft against the entire world, you know.
  • the death of Halo (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Tom (822) on Friday November 09, 2001 @10:22AM (#2543230) Homepage Journal
    about a year ago, when first previews with more than just some marketing hype came around, Halo was the next step in FPS gaming.

    let's see - it had a persistent, massive-multiplayer online world, a solid storyline driving an amazing outdoor graphics engine. and there were rumours that it was going to be released for windos, Mac and Linux - simultaneously.

    then, bungie got bought.

    when Halo finally comes to the PC in summer 2002, it will be yet another FPS, as all the really innovative concepts have been removed. the graphics will also be much less amazing given the amount of time that has passed.

    all that wouldn't be catastrophic, if it weren't for the fact that 90% of those who were starving for Halo earlier this year have been alienated.
    first the Mac and Linux users by bungie being acquired by none else then microsoft. the bungie forums were aflame in Mac users who felt somewhere between sold and raped.
    then, all those looking for the "next generation" game were pissed of by waiting about a year longer than was originally said, during which time Halo's graphics and physics engines have dwindled from "revolutionary" to "quite nice".
    and finally, everyone looking for the next step in FPS gaming, in the sense of more depth in gameplay than just kill-em-all, will have to look for some other place. sorry, Halo is just another shooter, try again next year.

    frankly, selling the game as part of a bundle is, IMHO, the only chance it has to break even. some idiot has systematically destroyed its fanbase, and because of the early marketing offense, almost everyone who'd pay money for Halo *was* a part of the fanbase.

    let's hope someone takes that which has been taken out of the game, i.e. all the *really* great parts, such as the persistent world, and makes a game around those.
  • Stop (Score:3, Insightful)

    by Rogerborg (306625) on Friday November 09, 2001 @10:35AM (#2543285) Homepage

    Stop. Wait. Pause for breath.

    Don't speculate that this is faked up, or a bought review, or that it rocks, or sucks, or is the best thing since sliced Tomato Demon.

    Just wait. Wait until you've played it in a store, or your excited friend plays it, or a plethora of reviews from many independent sources are available.

    Anything other reaction is just buying the hype, either Microsoft's bought hype or that of the anti-Microsoft crusaders.

    Make the decision now to wait until after this Christmas to buy an Xbox. It'll still be there, and it's still be as good or as bad as it is on the day it ships.

  • Re:Better Review (Score:4, Insightful)

    by Rogerborg (306625) on Friday November 09, 2001 @10:50AM (#2543385) Homepage

    Cheers, nice review. But...

    • "Finally, we have a combat title that actually gives us a taste of what the real thing might be like"

    The reviewer needs to go and play Hidden and Dangerous. You crawl on your belly for 20 minutes, then get shot once by a sniper that you can't even see, and just curl up and die. Or, better yet, read "Dulce Et Decorum Est" [utexas.edu]

    Also, both reviews seem to imply that you'll simply zip straight through the single player version, but the multiplayer has enough variety to keep you playing. Hmmm, seeing as how your only option (at launch) is a LAN party, you'd better hope all your friends buy Xboxen as well.

    I'll definitely be waiting until after Christmas to decide on an Xbox purchase, and I strongly suggest that everyone else considers making the decision to do likewise rather than playing the "how much is the hype affecting me today" game. ;-)

  • Maybe, maybe not. (Score:3, Insightful)

    by cryptochrome (303529) on Friday November 09, 2001 @11:09AM (#2543578) Journal
    In all fairness, designing non-humanoid aliens is a tricky business. Yes, the knees do resemble those of the protoss, but how many ways are you going to design legs besides those of humans? Protoss/Covenant knees resemble those of a number of different animals (albeit of the 4-legged variety). My point is, if you're going to design a realistic creature, there are significant limitations. It's debatable whether nature will even allow many bodyforms wholly different from those you already see in the natural world.

    As for the rest of the body, they're not that similar, and although they're using an energy blade it's not like that of the Protoss.
  • by cryptochrome (303529) on Friday November 09, 2001 @11:37AM (#2543807) Journal
    When it came out it was pretty much on-par with the games at the time. And as I said, the game physics were better, and the story/universe was WAY better than the plotless games on the PC side. I don't think there was a 1st person shooter with plot 'til Half-life for PCs. Since I usually play solo, such things make the game much more interesting to me.
  • by rochlin (248444) on Friday November 09, 2001 @11:57AM (#2543960) Homepage
    The simple fact is the screenshots are about 1280x965 pixels. I TV has a theoretical maximum of 525 horizontal dots of resolution (and somewhat fewer vertical lines).

    That means these are not screenshots. They're manufactured by some other means. Only MSFT knows for sure. Certainly not the reviewer.

    Whatever else is faked is left to our imagination...
  • Re:Promises (Score:2, Insightful)

    by StikyPad (445176) on Friday November 09, 2001 @12:26PM (#2544199) Homepage
    Not releasing a PC version of the game would defeat the purpose of the X-Box, which is not so much to capitalize on the console market, but to stimulate PC gaming development. To summarize an article in November's Wired magazine: While sales of new PCs have dwindled, sales of video cards have remained steady. Why? Gaming is currently the only real reason for upgrading a PC. However, IIRC, PC Games sales only make up 12% of the video game market. By creating a console which is essentially a PC and pricing it below cost, MS hopes to boost the creation of games which can easily be ported to a PC (running Windows of course). More high-end games for the PC means, hopefully, more purchases of new PCs which of course will come with Windows pre-installed.

    IMO, this seems like a stretch - what's the incentive for consumers to buy a new PC when their X-Box will run their games - but it does have some merit. PCs will be capable of running the games with more detail, smoothness, and content than their X-Box counterparts. Personally I hope their efforts are successful as I would love to see a larger variety of quality games for the PC.
  • by Brijam (242526) on Friday November 09, 2001 @01:28PM (#2544682) Homepage
    FWIW, I've played all of the major shooters from Wolfenstein through today's HLCS/UT/Q3/Wolf2. I'm not a PC-only type, either, I have also spent hundreds of hours in front of consoles.

    I spent an hour at e3 playing Halo. Not looking, playing. First off, it is truly beautiful. Nothing I've seen compares with the look of the game. Driving around in a car adds something I've wanted to do (and failed with mods) for a long time.

    Know anyone who plays Counterstrike with a Sidewinder? There is a reason people use mice and keyboards for FPS games-- it evolved over years of trial, research, and all sorts of goofy 'solutions' from joysticks to headbands.

    Halo is simply unplayable on the Xbox. Anyone who has tried Doom or Quake or UT on any console will attest to this. Yes, you can spend 20 hours learning how to cope with the lack of a mouse, and you can get close to the speed required to play a FPS. But not close enough.
    I'll wait for the PC version on this one, and it looks to kick ass. As an added bonus, I can't wait to pound fool Xbox users who join PC multiplayer games. You'll be able to spot them easily, they'll be the ones with no points.

    That Microsoft is making Halo their launch title really shows Microsoft's lack of knowledge about consoles and gaming. FPS games on consoles are about the worst-selling type of console game-- they aren't even a category. Treating a console like a PC does not make it one.

    When I look a historic come from nowhere successful launches, say, PlayStation, I see awesome console games and strong differentiation from competition at launch. PlayStation had kick-ass console games at launch - Toshinden, Ridge Racer, Tekken. Saturn was a very weak contender. The only thing I see that *might* be worth a look is Oddworld, but that isn't worth buying a console. I'll just wait for the PC version, or the Gamecube version.

    I just don't see strong differentiation for Xbox. I don't see powerful, must-have titles that are exclusive on the Xbox.

    OTOH, Gamecube has some awesome games that I won't be able to get anywhere but Gamecube. Rogue Squadron, Luigi's Mansion, etc. Those games are sweet.

    -B

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