Review by BDawg82688

"Yes...OH YES!"

Halo 2...the long awaited legend...

For those of you who have never played Halo: Combat Evolved, I shall take the time to explain: Halo is one of the most incredible games ever made. Halo 2 is the sequel (duh). It is an easy-to-pick-up FPS with enough new features to keep you busy for a while. Halo 2 is a natural extension of Halo, so it is painfully easy to adjust to it, even with the zillions of new features.

I had a phenomenal time when I first played Halo: Combat Evolved and I have enjoyed it ever since. So naturally I could not wait for Halo 2 to come out. In fact, it is the only game that I saved up money for and got the day it came out. A few things ticked me off, but on the whole the game was mind-blowing. It is definitely the kind of game that will never get old. A few people have given underrated reviews for Halo 2, and personally I think they have it wrong. (Don't get me wrong, they are entitled to their opinion, but I don't really
see it.) I'm here to tell it as I see it.

Gameplay (How it plays, how it feels, how it scores) 10/10

As I said before, Halo 2 plays like its prequel, but with brand new features. Hijacking vehicles is one of the coolest, and my favorite of the new features.
Remember when you wanted a ghost, but had to kill the pilot without destroying it or being run over? Remember when you wanted that Banshee so badly that you would literally run a gauntlet to get it, only to have it snatched by an elite?Well, now you can snatch slow moving vehicles by holding down the X button when you are near one. Another great feature is dual wielding. Although sometimes more trouble than it's worth, dual wielding can be very useful most of the time. You are only allowed to dual-wield one-handed weapons, excluding the energy sword. Using two different types of weapons gives you the advantages of both. It can be used for double firepower simply by firing both at once. A useful way to use dual weapons is to let loose with one at a time, then fire the second one while the first one is reloading. Wash, Rinse, Repeat. The new weapons are great, but I'll let you explore that yourself.

The game is easy to beat, but tough to traverse if you have as little sense of direction as I do. It very well can be beaten, obviously, but it takes time. Start at a difficulty you know you can play well in to explore the levels. Then move on with higher difficulties once you have done the run-through.

Story (The whole Enchilada, except for what I left out) 10/10

Aliens...kicking their butts...what's not to like? The passage of the story itself is interesting enough to keep you coming back to the game. The dialogue and scenes of the story are very enjoyable. The only part of the story I didn't like was the ending...or lack thereof. It doesn't end the story cleanly, if at all. To be fair, it's hard to end it in a way that satisfies the story, so they had to leave it up to your imagination. I would have given this a 12/10 if they found such an ending, simply because the rest of the story was awesome. At least some part of the end was really enjoyable...but I'll say no more.

Graphics and Sounds (A look at the looks and sounds of this bad boy) 10/10

The graphics were unbelievably satisfying. Stuff shining off of stuff...the way you can see things through the sniper scope when you aren't zoomed in...the lighting's all great. The soundtrack is very energetic and reminiscent of old times (I.E. they rewrote some of the old stuff but it still sounded great). The sounds produced by the weapons and the environment are realistic enough. Either way it sounds great.

Playability of single player mode (When you think they let you loose, they pull you RIGHT back in) 9/10

The bad part about the single player mode is that the levels are long and easy to get lost in, but the overall gameplay is about 10 hours. (That's what I heard, I didn't count because I was consumed with the game). It is saved by the fact that you are going to be carried on by the story. Once you beat it, you are probably going to beat it on legendary, whether you live for challenges, or whether you want bragging rights. Either way, you will want to play through it again.

Playability of multiplayer mode (Was that YOU in that last game? :P) 9/10

Halo was always awesome for being fun with friends along. Halo 2 just added to that. They added humongous levels and new ways to play, like playable elites, new modes, and updated oldies. The only real problem I had with it is that they cut some of the good stuff ( that, and that there was no black :( ) . No more more more small levels...levels are awesome when they are small, but big is good too. Halo 2 should have included more closed in levels. But the multiplayer is still incredible.

Overall (get it...get it...get it...) 9.5/10

The game is great...'nuff said. Go buy it. Then again, hold on to Halo for two reasons. One: you can't just start warthog-launching in Halo 2 because of destroyable vehicles. Two: it's still fun to play in small levels. Bungie never ceases to amaze me...

Reviewer's Rating:   4.5 - Outstanding

Originally Posted: 11/15/04

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