Halo 4

by Brett Stewart 

In 2007, the gaming world said what they thought would be a final farewell to Master Chief, the beloved space marine whom we had grown to love through nearly a decade worth of games from the Halo franchise. Despite the release of the prequel ‘Halo Reach’, the community still longed for the Chief, even if just for one more game. Fortunately, Microsoft revamped the franchise for another three games from the new developer 343 Industries, replacing the iconic Bungie development team. In late 2012, the gaming community welcomed the series back with Halo 4… and it’s better than ever before.

Visually, Halo 4 is everything the franchise has so longed deserved. Landscapes are marvelous, weapons are more lifelike than ever before and the characters and cut-scenes resemble a Hollywood film more so than a Halo game.  This is the first game in a very long time where I repeatedly stopped gameplay to behold the massive and wondrous environments. The game takes place on a new planet this go around; one which suits the visuals remarkably well. Heck, I’d go as far to say Halo 4 is the best looking game on the console.

One of Halo 4’s most important strong points lies in the storyline. The story is debatably more character driven than ever before. (Possibly due to the developer switch.) This Halo has Master Chief making his decisions based on emotions, even love, rather than monotonous orders to go on blind killing rages from his higher ups. Essentially, Cortana’s time is running short, she and the Chief are stuck on a Covenant filled planet (Who have now allied with the Prometheans, who are essentially the first evolution of humans.) and the Chief’s feelings for Cortana fuel his mission to escape the planet and save her. Once you get past the awkward sexual tension between a super soldier and a hologram… it works quite well.

Halo 4’s multiplayer is still the same Halo we love. All the modes are essentially the same, except for a couple name switches. For example, ‘Infection’ is now ‘Flood.’ The rest is pretty much the same spray and pray, run and gun multiplayer we’ve grown to adore over the years. It’s all the fun of Halo 3’s being an ass to your friends, now with better graphics.

Halo 4 is a masterpiece; 343 Industries gracefully carried the torch from Bungie’s games, and honestly, they might just have done it a bit better. With developers already hinting at Halo 5, it’s safe to say the Halo franchise is in good hands with 343 for yet another generation of gamers to come.

 

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Title: Halo 4
Developer : 343 Industries
Console: Xbox 360
Release Date : November 6, 2012

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