If Halo 4 is to be the best Halo game in the series it really needs to emphasize and improve on key Halo elements and define the action/Arena FPS Halo is. Halo 4 needs to be fast-paced, it needs to be explosive, it needs to be versatile in gameplay and have plenty of depth, and most importantly it needs to define and emphasize key Halo elements for the best Halo game possible. I feel with Reach, Halo fell into a little bit of an identity crysis trying to be more realistic and class-based and I would not like to see it continue down that road. 343i needs to embrace and improve key Halo elements and define the action FPS like Halo originally did for consoles.
1. Sandbox gameplay- This is a major strength of Halo multiplayer and key in what makes it so fun. The different weapons/vehicles/equipment/power-up/power weapons as pick-ups is what gives the game its variety and need for constant moving and positioning to secure these weapons/equipment. I would like to see 343i go even further with Halo’s Sandbox gameplay. Despite the obvious need for new weapons there is no limit to what could be added to the Sandbox. Putting more items on the map to secure(not necessarily weapons) such as movement enhancements, new power-ups, to new teleportation and lift devices Halos Sandbox has endless potential and there is tons you could put into the Sandbox to really enhance that great Action/Arena style gameplay and give it more diversity. Even introducing a new line of pick-up items/power-ups all together is a possibility, the evolution of Halos Sandbox is key to a great Halo game.
2. Run and Gun FPS- Halo should be a fairly fast-paced FPS, its a game that requires constant movement and constant shooting on a full shielded enemy to take down and its movement and aiming mechanics should reflect that. Now Halo CE+Halo 2 had the best movement and aiming mechanics suited for Halo gameplay, in that you could run and gun at all times and everyone moved the same speed! Ideally, Halo should have movement and aiming mechanics similar to Halo 2 in having fixed reticles, and Halo2 style movement speeds/jump heights with responsive aiming/strafing which allows the player to have complete control over his movement and aiming with no strafe acceleration or aim accleration. Halo CE+Halo 2 felt like PC shooters the aiming and movement were smooth and responsive at the right speeds, and believe me when I say this 343i they had better movement/aiming than H3+Reach and the majority of the Halo community would agree with me. Possible additions to movement should be treated as an addition to ALL players not as a loadout, or as pick-ups on the map all players have access to. They should fit in with a run and gun playstyle, which means no diving to the ground or cover-based systems players should be able to perform all movement options on the run. Players should spawn symmetrically in Halo for the most balanced and smooth Halo game possible and for its Sandbox approach to work correctly.
Understanding the style of gameplay Halo has leads us to the conclusion that the reticle bloom and sprint additions made with Reach does not work in Halo. It goes against the very basic Halo concept that your supposed to be able to run and gun at all times! Never again should I have to “time” shots in a Halo game or should I have to sprint and lose my ability to shoot for moving in a Halo game it just does not work well in Halo gameplay due to the core game mechanic of a regenerating shield and its run and gun style and I cannot emphasize this enough.
Halo IS NOT and should never begin to resemble a tactical FPS or take game mechanics from that type of shooter, it is way different and its style of gameplay is not the same. Taking Halo in a tactical direction is the worst possible direction it could go in please do not do that 343i.
3. Dueling/DM FPS- Halo gameplay features alot of individual duels and emphasis on slaying the enemy team over and over again even in objective gametypes. The medium kill times provided by the core game mechanic and need for constant accuracy/movement/different kill combinations to kill is a staple of Halo which results in many duels between players in which you CAN come back down shots if you outplay the enemy. This is where Halos individual skill in, and the more skilled player should win these individual duels over the lesser skilled player 100 percent of the time and there should be great variable in deciding these battles. Movement skill, aim skill, positioning, use of the golden triangle should all be factors in these duels and furthering those skillsets will bring more individual skill and dynamics to Halo gameplay. These skillsets have unfortunately been lowered since Halo CE, creating a less skillful and less exciting Halo game much to the dismay of the competitve/MLG community.
Furthering and expanding on the aiming, movement, and decision making aspect of Halo will bring more individual skill to Halo and make its dueling nature that much more exciting and dynamic. Even simple things, like making movement speeds faster and strafes faster again would help accomplish this, as would making hitboxes a little smaller and aiming more responsive. Adding another movement option such as a thruster pack which would in turn would enhance jumping/strafes is also possible, or building on the golden triangle as long as it fits in with Halo gameplay. Even introducing new grenades or weapons would help in this reguard it doesnt even have to be anything major sometimes just improving game mechanics is the best route.
So those are they key aspects of Halo multiplayer I feel need to be emphasized and improved for Halo 4 and future Halo games. You have to have a clear picture of the identity of the game if you are to improve the gameplay and I think I gave a pretty clear picture here of what Halo multiplayer is and should be like. Tell me what you think of Halo multiplayer and the key aspects that should be emphasized for a successful and awesome Halo 4 multiplayer =)