It's amazing how much game design has evolved

I had fond memories of CE. Back in the day it was a blast. But playing it now it’s really clear how far game design has evolved. The encounters in CEA are very generic. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a nice trip down memory lane, and the price point is perfect because Microsoft isn’t charging for a full price game so this isn’t a knock against the product, just an observation of how far design philosophy has evolved.

As I’m playing through the game there’s a lot of bland hallways and back tracking. The encounters are extremely generic. Battling at the base of the lift is a prime example. You clear the bottom and stand there while wave after wave just appear in the bottom and get killed. I remember it as being very epic but nowadays it’s a bit of a chore. My friend and I were playing co-op and we got 4 missions in and gave it a break because the main source of fun the game was providing us with was us just having fun and flipping warthogs and messing about.

The outdoor levels is where Halo shines. The encounters still aren’t very inventive compared to modern games but the sandbox makes the experience more engaging and compelling and the vehicles really add an awesome level of depth.

But I just couldn’t shake the feeling of boredome whilst running through the hallways of the covenant ship on Truth and Reconciliation. It was honestly a chore to finish that level. It was a dirge. It’s just bland hallways then a big room that feeds enemies into it through doorways. There’s little variety or tension.

That’s no insult to the game. Heck it’s 10 years old, I don’t expect it to best the best Halo. I don’t expect modern design. It’s just really fascinating seeing how designers thought back in 2000. The game has a beautiful shiny new coat of paint and it polishes up nice but boy do the encounters and design show their age. I found myself enjoying the game more with the older graphics on because then the visuals matched the gameplay. I just found that when a game with such modern graphics has such dated level design it felt unbalanced. The gunplay and the gameplay also feels worn out. I can’t put my finger quite on it but something feels … dated.

If this game was released now for the first time in our modern era the reviewers would tear it to shreds. But obviously that’s not what this is trying to be. The title ‘anniversary’ and the cheaper price point is very appropriate. It has an elegance to it and in the words of Indiana Jones it belongs in a museum. I’m glad they didn’t change it, I’m glad they preserved the original gameplay. It’s definitely still fun and for $70 (i live in Australia) it’s a good buy. Plus the maps sweaten the deal.

Halo Anniversary looks pretty. But it’s like a 50 year old woman dressed like a girl half her age. But not an old looking 50 year old, I mean a 50 year old woman that looks great for her age, she’s still really attractive, a MIL F even. But if you look passed all the make up and young clothes you can still see the age.

Anyway, that’s just my thoughts, my opinion, you may agree or disagree, it’s all just personal perspective amd I’m not saying I’m right or you’re wrong for disagreeing. I’ll probably finish the game tomorrow after I’ve had a break and I’m the mood for more.

Also, I’m glad they used Reach multiplayer. I played loads of CE multi-player and while it was fun for it’s time, I don’t think it was as good as Halo 2 or 3.

70$? Australia is a rip off. I thought you guys were cool.

Every copy comes with an aerosol can of dingo repellent, hence the extra cost.

Very good post Shadow and I completely agree with everything.

Even though a lot of the forum go’ers knock Reach, the Campaign beats Halo CE hands down imo but I fully understand 10 years ago this game was ground breaking, it just isn’t now.

However I’m still going to enjoy the experience and I enjoyed the first 2 levels on legendary :slight_smile:

PS - $70? £30 in UK :slight_smile:

> 70$? Australia is a rip off. I thought you guys were cool.

Games can cost $100+ here so $70 is cheap. I lived in USA for 3 years, I can’t believe how affordable and cheap gaming was over

> Even though a lot of the forum go’ers knock Reach, the Campaign beats Halo CE hands down imo but I fully understand 10 years ago this game was ground breaking, it just isn’t now.

Cheers. In truth it would be unfair to measure CE against Reach since Reach benefits from 10 years of iteration and polish. But as you said it was indeed ground breaking at the time.

And like I said, it’s definitely been presented as a kind of history lesson, it’s called ‘anniversary’ and the fact that it’s cheaper than regular retail shows that MS are pushing it as something more like a fan-service, tribute kind of thing. Despite it’s age I feel like there’s still fun to be had with the game. The value proposition is spot on … for $70AUS you could do a lot worse.

> > 70$? Australia is a rip off. I thought you guys were cool.
>
> Games can cost $100+ here so $70 is cheap. I lived in USA for 3 years, I can’t believe how affordable and cheap gaming was over

I got CEA for $58 at EB games. :slight_smile:

That’s what ten years of looking back will do. Of course it’s still a good game, just it’s old now.

> I had fond memories of CE. Back in the day it was a blast. But playing it now it’s really clear how far game design has evolved. The encounters in CEA are very generic. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a nice trip down memory lane, and the price point is perfect because Microsoft isn’t charging for a full price game so this isn’t a knock against the product, just an observation of how far design philosophy has evolved.
>
> As I’m playing through the game there’s a lot of bland hallways and back tracking. The encounters are extremely generic. Battling at the base of the lift is a prime example. You clear the bottom and stand there while wave after wave just appear in the bottom and get killed. I remember it as being very epic but nowadays it’s a bit of a chore. My friend and I were playing co-op and we got 4 missions in and gave it a break because the main source of fun the game was providing us with was us just having fun and flipping warthogs and messing about.
>
> The outdoor levels is where Halo shines. The encounters still aren’t very inventive compared to modern games but the sandbox makes the experience more engaging and compelling and the vehicles really add an awesome level of depth.
>
> But I just couldn’t shake the feeling of boredome whilst running through the hallways of the covenant ship on Truth and Reconciliation. It was honestly a chore to finish that level. It was a dirge. It’s just bland hallways then a big room that feeds enemies into it through doorways. There’s little variety or tension.
>
> That’s no insult to the game. Heck it’s 10 years old, I don’t expect it to best the best Halo. I don’t expect modern design. It’s just really fascinating seeing how designers thought back in 2000. The game has a beautiful shiny new coat of paint and it polishes up nice but boy do the encounters and design show their age. I found myself enjoying the game more with the older graphics on because then the visuals matched the gameplay. I just found that when a game with such modern graphics has such dated level design it felt unbalanced. The gunplay and the gameplay also feels worn out. I can’t put my finger quite on it but something feels … dated.
>
> If this game was released now for the first time in our modern era the reviewers would tear it to shreds. But obviously that’s not what this is trying to be. The title ‘anniversary’ and the cheaper price point is very appropriate. It has an elegance to it and in the words of Indiana Jones it belongs in a museum. I’m glad they didn’t change it, I’m glad they preserved the original gameplay. It’s definitely still fun and for $70 (i live in Australia) it’s a good buy. Plus the maps sweaten the deal.
>
> Halo Anniversary looks pretty. But it’s like a 50 year old woman dressed like a girl half her age. But not an old looking 50 year old, I mean a 50 year old woman that looks great for her age, she’s still really attractive, a MIL F even. But if you look passed all the make up and young clothes you can still see the age.
>
> Anyway, that’s just my thoughts, my opinion, you may agree or disagree, it’s all just personal perspective amd I’m not saying I’m right or you’re wrong for disagreeing. I’ll probably finish the game tomorrow after I’ve had a break and I’m the mood for more.
>
> Also, I’m glad they used Reach multiplayer. I played loads of CE multi-player and while it was fun for it’s time, I don’t think it was as good as Halo 2 or 3.

I disagree, while you do replay parts of levels at times the encounters and atmospheres are pretty diverse and extremely engaging/grand and require tactics to beat. The AI is better than some modern games in my opinion, and some of the enemies interact with each other and react accordingly to counter your moves. The story is engaging and deep and the characters serve their purpose in the story. The game is not outdated, but pure Halo. It is not dumbed down, it does not try to present itself like a movie like so many single player campaigns do these days, and every weapon and game mechanic serves a specific gameplay purpose with great balance. It would take longer and take more effort to create a HCE campaign than most modern shooter campaigns. Even Bungie admitted that that they worked longer on the HCE campaign than the other Halo campaigns due to time restrictions.

Also explain yourself when you say its “outdated”, because for the life of me I dont see much outdated about it. Weapons are not outdated, physics are not outdated except vehicles, AI is not outdated, level design is not outdated, movement is not outdated, great games like Halo are never outdated. And if outdated means not having the gimmicky features that plague some modern shooters then ill take outdated any day just like id take HCE and some oldschool FPS over Reach or most modern shooters ANY day. If you dont get why the Halo CE campaign is a instant classic you dont get the beautiful pureness of Halo and why so many love it.

> > I had fond memories of CE. Back in the day it was a blast. But playing it now it’s really clear how far game design has evolved. The encounters in CEA are very generic. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a nice trip down memory lane, and the price point is perfect because Microsoft isn’t charging for a full price game so this isn’t a knock against the product, just an observation of how far design philosophy has evolved.
> >
> > As I’m playing through the game there’s a lot of bland hallways and back tracking. The encounters are extremely generic. Battling at the base of the lift is a prime example. You clear the bottom and stand there while wave after wave just appear in the bottom and get killed. I remember it as being very epic but nowadays it’s a bit of a chore. My friend and I were playing co-op and we got 4 missions in and gave it a break because the main source of fun the game was providing us with was us just having fun and flipping warthogs and messing about.
> >
> > The outdoor levels is where Halo shines. The encounters still aren’t very inventive compared to modern games but the sandbox makes the experience more engaging and compelling and the vehicles really add an awesome level of depth.
> >
> > But I just couldn’t shake the feeling of boredome whilst running through the hallways of the covenant ship on Truth and Reconciliation. It was honestly a chore to finish that level. It was a dirge. It’s just bland hallways then a big room that feeds enemies into it through doorways. There’s little variety or tension.
> >
> > That’s no insult to the game. Heck it’s 10 years old, I don’t expect it to best the best Halo. I don’t expect modern design. It’s just really fascinating seeing how designers thought back in 2000. The game has a beautiful shiny new coat of paint and it polishes up nice but boy do the encounters and design show their age. I found myself enjoying the game more with the older graphics on because then the visuals matched the gameplay. I just found that when a game with such modern graphics has such dated level design it felt unbalanced. The gunplay and the gameplay also feels worn out. I can’t put my finger quite on it but something feels … dated.
> >
> > If this game was released now for the first time in our modern era the reviewers would tear it to shreds. But obviously that’s not what this is trying to be. The title ‘anniversary’ and the cheaper price point is very appropriate. It has an elegance to it and in the words of Indiana Jones it belongs in a museum. I’m glad they didn’t change it, I’m glad they preserved the original gameplay. It’s definitely still fun and for $70 (i live in Australia) it’s a good buy. Plus the maps sweaten the deal.
> >
> > Halo Anniversary looks pretty. But it’s like a 50 year old woman dressed like a girl half her age. But not an old looking 50 year old, I mean a 50 year old woman that looks great for her age, she’s still really attractive, a MIL F even. But if you look passed all the make up and young clothes you can still see the age.
> >
> > Anyway, that’s just my thoughts, my opinion, you may agree or disagree, it’s all just personal perspective amd I’m not saying I’m right or you’re wrong for disagreeing. I’ll probably finish the game tomorrow after I’ve had a break and I’m the mood for more.
> >
> > Also, I’m glad they used Reach multiplayer. I played loads of CE multi-player and while it was fun for it’s time, I don’t think it was as good as Halo 2 or 3.
>
> I disagree, while you do replay parts of levels at times the encounters and atmospheres are pretty diverse and extremely engaging/grand and require tactics to beat. The AI is better than some modern games in my opinion, and some of the enemies interact with each other and react accordingly to counter your moves. The story is engaging and deep and the characters serve their purpose in the story. The game is not outdated, but pure Halo. It is not dumbed down, it does not try to present itself like a movie like so many single player campaigns do these days, and every weapon and game mechanic serves a specific gameplay purpose with great balance. It would take longer and take more effort to create a HCE campaign than most modern shooter campaigns. Even Bungie admitted that that they worked longer on the HCE campaign than the other Halo campaigns due to time restrictions.
>
> Also explain yourself when you say its “outdated”, because for the life of me I dont see much outdated about it. Weapons are not outdated, physics are not outdated except vehicles, AI is not outdated, level design is not outdated, movement is not outdated, great games like Halo are never outdated. And if outdated means not having the gimmicky features that plague some modern shooters then ill take outdated any day just like id take HCE and some oldschool FPS over Reach or most modern shooters ANY day. If you dont get why the Halo CE campaign is a instant classic you dont get the beautiful pureness of Halo and why so many love it.

I agree completely about the AI. Even the 10 year old CE has better AI then COD. That’s one of the elements of Halo that I think has aged really well.

As for your other question, I can’t really put my finger on it. The combat just feels clunky compared to subsequent Halo titles. I guess I’m the end it’s just my opinion.

I stick by my thoughts on encounter design. The encounters in the POA are just hallway encounters, nothing more. Then on the Halo ring it consists of going to an area while a drop ship ferries in a squad of enemies, you kill em, rinse and repeat. Althought the light bridge is a welcome exception. Then the Truth and Reconciliation is more of the same. You reach the lift, waves appear at the bottom, kill em, rinse repeat. Then inside the ship and it’s gets even more bland, hallway, open room, hallway, open room. When you’re in the open room door open to spawn bad guys, you kill em, rinse repeat. For me personally it was a complete chore.

Halo does have its moments though, it’s not all a chore. And you’re right about modern games relying on gimmicks and set pieces to change up encounter design, most modern games can be pretty uninspired to. But when I think about ODST and H3 and some of the incredible encounters you take part in, the evolution and improvement of the Halo series becomes clear.

Also, I agree about the weapons, CE nailed it back in the day, their formula still feels fresh 10 years later