Here is a little background on the past halo games. I played halo since the first day of its release. So i would say i know exactly what i am talking about. At least in the competitive players perspective point of view.
Halo 1: Pretty competitive. No rank but still an amazing game with competitive game play. The game play was very fast, no slow movement going on.
Halo 2: In my personal opinion there will never be a better game than halo 2. It was a VERY competitive game play. While there was still A LOT and a lot of fun for casual players. Also very fast fps/movement. This is where the skill came in. If you were quick enough you were able to take on 3 players at once. Which made this game amazing. And your rank actually showed your skill.
Halo 3: Some what of competitive. Rank didn’t mean so much. Everyone had a 50. It was not hard to get. The game play/fps was a little slow. Definitely a big difference from halo 2. But still overall a good game. Not great, but good.
Halo Reach: Sorry but it was a total fail. You guys took the ranking system from call of duty. You should be ashamed of you self. This is halo. The game play/fps was also a total fail. It is way too slow. The DMR is a total fail. You are no longer able to take on 3 players by yourself. Not because you are not skilled enough but it is impossible. I could write a 50 page essay how bad this game is. But to sum it up, you guys basically made this game for casual players. But what you don’t understand is that you can make a game for casual players and competitive players. Its not hard. Look at halo 2. I don’t think any halo player has anything bad to say about that game.
Friends List: You guys don’t even realize how important this is. In halo 3 and reach we used microsoft friends list. Which was horrible. Totally felt out of its place. Halo 2 has an amazing simple friends list. It was very easy to use and it was quick. It was easy to add friends, invite them to party, see what they were doing ect. It made the game feel really SOCIAL. You were able to meet and play with many players. In all of the other halo’s it seemed like you were playing by yourself. The friends list was way too slow and you had to go out of your way to add someone. Made you feel like you were playing by yourself.