JoyPads: Halo Reach Review
We have finally reach to do this review.
Bungie returns with a stellar of a job. Halo Reach is the start of it all and it makes the player engage in a bloody battle for survival of Reach. Throughout the course of the game, you will encounter some rather lovely set-pieces and experience a new twist to the Halo franchise.
Reach do dump the heroics of a one man army which people will miss or not miss when you did all that pro-lava with the Master Chief. You are in a squad, a squad who know each other well and know how to get the job done. You are Noble Team, a team of Spartan soldiers who each has there own specialities. With all the heroics put aside even in a squad taking out a load of Covenant before you and the objective. Reach is rather a emotional ride which will make you think twice of Bungie’s capabilities.
Before I start chipping away, you know Reach’s downfall to be preordained, and with the opening to Halo: Combat Evolved meaning the Master Chief is the last surviving Spartan Solider. You will know Noble Team won’t go so well. Regardless of knowing of the outcome. This doesn’t stop Reach doing a very good job for the Halo franchise.
The plot is very good. Like I said before you may know what the outcome is to Reach via Halo Combat Evolved, but to be explained how and why. Reach does it perfectly. Its the only emotional Halo game to date. Compared to the Trilogy of Halo and Wars, Reach comes out on top to tug on your heart strings and, if you are a person who gets easily emotional, then the tissues at bay perhaps? You play as Noble Six, the newbie to Noble Team. You will meet your fellow comrades who are: Carter, Kat, Jorge, Jun and Emile. Each of them have their own expertise, and will prove useful in the upcoming events of Reach. You may start to attach to a few of the characters or all of them. Bungie certainly based the game around these characters to what life was like as a Spartan. The game starts slow, but soon picks up and the explosions and good set pieces start to roll in.
The gameplay to Halo is somewhat altered to how you would play a FPS, especially a Halo game. It was usually run & gun with dual SMG’s and slaughtering everything in your path. Reach introduces new abilities which you can perform in the game. You can have jetpacks, evade as in roll out of the way from enemy fire and grenades, drop shield and armour lock and sprint plus active camo. Each of these abilities do have time limits but they do replenish after a certain time, just like your shields. Reach is more action in your face than having the enemy sit back waiting for you to come blasting bullets left, right and centre. The abilities up above will prove useful and be a fine addition to your arsenal. At some stages at the game you will feel forced to use the abilities. Seeing as this isn’t Halo, as in you playing as the Master Chief running and gunning. Reach is a total new kettle of fish. If you keep to the old roots and expect to floor everything which is more likely possible to do on easy setting. The AI are more intelligent and will use cover just like you. They will flush you out and make you do things which you may not want to and you will not stand a chance.
The major twist to the Halo franchise is the space dog-fight battle which you will encounter. At first, I thought the controls maybe awkward, but the controls are perfectly mapped to the right buttons to not make it complicated. Definitely for me the controls wasn’t a problem and you could easily mistake yourself for playing a flight/action game instead. The space dog-fight mission is one of the highlights for Reach and got a nice appeal back at E3 this year during the live demo demonstration. This set-piece alone will make you want to play Reach. Bungie have delivered this really well and maybe they might dive into that genre in the future.
The multiplayer to Reach is far more entertaining. Halo 3 offered a social experience and not much of a competitive spectrum, but Reach offers both social and competitive gaming. All of the abilities can be used and the maps perfectly fit the bill for reaching the stars. Firefight makes a return and tweaked, as it supports user-set rules. Forge World is more friendly to use and the controls been tweaked for easier fitting and placing objects. The normal game modes such as Slayer, King of the Hill plus many more. The ranking up system seems more addictive than before and with the introduction of the armoury on which you can purchase new pieces of armour to make your own Spartan more unique. When you get promoted to new ranks you will unlock new armour. It does become time consuming but if you put the effort in. You will reap the rewards. Bungie have become masterminds by offering daily challenges ans weekly challenges to help players gain more credits. Credits are the in game currency to buy armour, firefight voices and different coloured visors. The challenges could vary from anything. Kill 500 enemies in any Reach game mode to earn 3 killing spree’s in one match.
Overall, Halo Reach is a very enjoyable game. It offers new twists to the original gameplay to Halo games and does them in style. Finishing the game on Legendary does still have its annoyances. Throwing grenades left, right and centre and enemies being rather harsh. The multiplayer is more addictive and you will be playing Reach for sometime. The memories of getting a plasma grenade stuck to your Dom Jollies. The laughs will soon return and you will crying with laughter. Reach is definitely worth the purchase. Its a great instalment to Halo and gives you a great insight what happened before you entered the shoes of the Master Chief.