Review by Gorvir

"A Great FPS in its own right, but technically restraining"

Graphics: Keep in mind that Halo has been out for a while. Considering its age, this game looks very good. The problem is that as good as it looks, the conversion from X-Box to PC was poorly done and it takes a good computer with a good ATI card to run smoothly. Double the recommended settings on the box and you'll get about what you need to run it decently. If you don't have those, go to the properties of the shortcut and go to the end of target, then put -useff. If you don't have to use that, you've got a good system on your hands. 6/10

Sound: The sound was pretty good in Halo. The guns all have nice sound effects and the voice acting was well done. Everything from atmospheric sound effects to your squads throwing smack talk around was very well done. I haven't noticed any sound glitches and the voice cuts right back in even when you pause it by hitting escape. Well done. 10/10

Gameplay: The core of every game. Halo's combat is well done. You can only carry two guns, making you decide on what would be best for any given situation. Aside from these two guns you have two types of grenades (Fragmentation and Plasma) which you can carry four of each at a time. The game features everything from one-man-army battles to squad based fights to dogfights to full-scale assaults. You won't get bored here. 10/10

Added Elements: Since the conversion, there have been several new additions including two new guns for multiplayer and vehicles in multiplayer. The new guns are the Fuel Rod Gun and the Flamethrower. The flamethrower is never used or seen in the singleplayer game, but is popular with players online. It's a powerful close-range gun that will kill you in seconds if you don't move out of the way. The Fuel Rod Gun is a rapid-fire plasma rocket launcher. Just like other Covenant weapons, however, it will overheat if you fire it too much too quickly. The addition of vehicles to multiplayer allows multiple people to ride in the same vehicle at once for better teamwork (such as three people on a warthog). There are also new maps, game modes, and the ability to create custom game modes for multiplayer matches. There are enough additions here to warrant an X-Box owner buying this as well.

Story: The story is one of the best told in any FPS game to date, on par with Half-Life and Deus Ex (although none stand up to Deus Ex). The story is told in-game through both cutscenes and radio chatter. There are no FMV sequences and you never feel like they're taking you out of the action with the story. It integrates well with the gameplay and is well told. If you can't get enough, read the books as well. 9/10

Stability: This is a pretty stable game, despite the badly done conversion and graphical slowdown problems. There are rarely any crashes, and what ones there were happened to be mostly fixed by patches shortly after the game's release. Multiplayer games can be joined nearly instantly, far faster than the long waits to join games of Half-Life and Counter-Strike. 8/10

Miscellaneous: A main complaint I had in this game was the save feature. It was very badly done. Instead of a save-anywhere feature like 99% of FPS games on the market have, they used a checkpoint system. This can get frustrating as when you die you may have to play over a significant portion of the section you're doing to get back on track, and you may die again in the same place. This can force to keep replaying the same section over and over in several places, getting very repetative and annoying.

Overall, this game would have recieved a 10/10 if it were not for the horrendously bad slowdown problems associated with the shoddy job done converting this to the PC. Either upgrade or use the -useff command, but either way, enjoy it for what it is. A great singleplayer and multiplayer FPS gaming experience. 8/10

Reviewer's Rating:   4.0 - Great

Originally Posted: 11/25/03

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