Review by reman

"Quite the disappointment"

After hearing all the hype for this game when it was on XBox, I figured it was a sure bet to be a great game for the PC. I don't think the game stands up to the standards I had for it when I first played it... but I digress.

Graphics - 4/10

This is the one portion of the game that absolutely stunned me. I had to turn the graphics all the way down to get any reasonable framerate... and that should not be the case with my computer (Athlon XP 2500+, 512 megs PC 3200 ram, GeForce FX 5600 ultra). Granted, I can play Battlefield 1942 or Unreal 2 (both graphically intense games) at 1024x768 with full details, etc., and get 40+ fps. In halo, I was lucky to get 10. I don't know if it's a driver issue, or the fact that Halo runs off DirectX 9.0b, but I got terrible perfomance.

Audio - 8/10

No complaints here, though nothing really stands out all that much as well. Voice actors are very good, general special effects sound good as well. Music could be better, but overall still above the norm.

Controls - 8/10

Controls are fairly tight, and use the standard keyboard/mouse setup that I've been familiar with for the last few years. Control in game is responsive, as you aren't in a HUGE fight, in which the responce time diminishes.

Gameplay - 6/10

I know I'll be flamed for this... but what's the big deal about this game? To be honest, I don't see much innovation in the gameplay. It's not a stictly generic, cookie-cutter FPS, but it's darn close. Movement in game seems slow and ackward. Missions are similar throughout the game, leading to a tedious gameplay. In single player, the game got really boring really quickly.
However, I can't fail to mention the enemy AI. I was rather impressed with the behaviors of the enemies, even on the easiest settings. Through a grenade, they dive out of the way... don't pay attention, and they'll sneak up behind you... Definately some of the best AI out there, but I don't think that makes up for the lacking story,mission selections, and overall feel to the game.

Online - 9/10

I think Online play may salvage this game. I played online a bit the first day I got the game, and thought... hmm, this could work, if only you would WALK FASTER. I think if they fixed that, the online games would be much more interesting. But, as it is now, the basic Deathmatch games are good, and more interesting then other FPS due to the weapons restrictions (i.e. only having 2 weapons), so that adds a little more strategy. However, it is a pain getting sniped while trying to pick up a better weapon, but not much you can do about that. CTF games are excellent, and really make the online experiance. Using the vehicles to storm the enemy base is insanely fun. Overall, online play is very good, and with a few fixes, could be my favorite game to play online.

Overall - 6/10 (not an average)

So here's the thing... the single player game is good, a little above average. The multiplayer is one of the best. However, as of right now, the multiplayer can not overcome the problems of the generic single player in my mind. The single player comes across as too generic, and really could have used a touching up graphically, etc. since the release on XBox a few years ago. I think that Microsoft and Bungie really dropped the ball on this one, because with a few performance tweaks this game could have been improved immensly. A lot of my negative feelings stem from the poor graphics situation, which in turn will cause problems with gameplay and control, lowering the overall performance of the game. I *hope* that whatever problem is out there now ( cause I have read a few other comments elsewhere on the web regarding similar problems) will be resolved soon. If so, I'd have to rethink my review of the game.
So, in conclusion... the single player is above average, but still too generic for my tastes, and multiplayer is a lot of fun.

Reviewer's Rating:   3.0 - Fair

Originally Posted: 10/06/03

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