Review by KenshinKatamari

Reviewed: 11/02/05

An incredible addition to the Behemoth that is Halo 2 Multiplayer.

Halo 2 for the Xbox is regarded by many as the greatest shooter available on consoles. For many, this love rests solely with the multiplayer experience, and for good reason. Halo 2 has always been the pinnacle of multiplayer online shooters for the consoles, and logs hundreds of thousands of users a week. Almost every fan of this game has already bought this add-on, but what about the ever-present skeptics? This review will go into detail on every aspect of this package, and give the positives (and negatives, though there are few) on this game.

Graphics: 9/10

The graphics are awe-inspiring. From a Covenant ship to the interior of an arctic Flood-wall, you will never grow old of the textures lining each object in the game. Radar does the job, but isn't so wide that the player can see oncoming stealthy enemies with ease. Individual bullet shells and sniper streaks line the arenas, and the tension that comes over you when you sneak up on the sniper that has taken out half of your party is immense. This, in part, is due to the somewhat lifelike movement of the characters that are available in multiplayer (Covenant Elite, a form of 'alien', and the Master Chief, an armor-clad human). However on rare instances, being killed while jumping will send your body through the floor, and have it move sporadically over the screen. Otherwise, the graphics are top-notch.

Sound: 10/10

Sound does much more than its intended job: It puts you in the game. Crouch-walking across Sanctuary and hearing a sniper bullet wizz by your head allows you to fully realize where the bullet came from, and hide behind cover. The reload sounds perfect, as the canister locks into the gun and the empty hits the floor. The bullets fire with the recoil and snap that you would hope them to. Overall, the sound is perfect.

Gameplay: 10/10

The meat of this add-on is, of course, the gameplay. And as you would expect it to, it delivers with flying colors. The environments are all well-designed, weapons being in the perfect spot and cover available everywhere. You can use squad-tactics, or single person attacks, and you'll do well either way. Halo is one of the few games that takes skill over owning the best weapons, and this pack fleshes that out fully. Hogging the rocket launcher now means nothing against a skilled player, as there are shortcuts in and out of almost every level.

For $20, can you really afford not to buy this? Nine new perfectly designed maps, for a near-perfect game. If you can deal with the minor graphical glitches, this is the game for you.

Rating:   5.0 - Flawless

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