While attempting to enjoy a match on Truth just now, I realized how hopeless it was. This game isn’t what I was hoping for, nor will it ever be.
I’ve always had problems with sprint - it doesn’t make gameplay faster, it simply results in scaling maps and lowering base movement speed. It does give the illusion of moving quickly, but it is just that - an illusion. Sprinting from one side of Truth to the other takes just as long as it took to run from one side of Heretic/Midship to the other - now you just lose the ability to shoot.
Clamber also adds to the illusion of maneuverability. Previously, timed crouch jumps or “trick” jumps off of small ledges were used to reach advantageous positions. While performing these jumps (some of which were quite difficult), you never lost the ability to shoot. Effectively, clamber lets you accomplish what you could do previously while removing your ability to shoot - further limiting you, just as sprint does. I also feel that clamber has an excessive amount of range - it is almost as detrimental to controlling high ground as jetpack was in Reach/Halo 4.
Smart scope is a poorly designed mechanic, as well. The implementation of it pretty clearly signifies Halo’s loss of identity. Smart scope is absolutely unfair to those of us who use a “toggle” zoom layout (on the right stick for me), as we’re forced to scope back in. Players who use left trigger to zoom in do get knocked out of scope, but get seamlessly scoped back in.
Lower base movement speed has made strafing relatively ineffective. You can always throw someone off with a strategically timed thrust, but why throw that mechanic in when strafing managed to accomplish just as much with less complexity?
So, there are mechanics that are flawed - doesn’t mean the game can’t be fun, right? I mean, Reach was horribly flawed when it came out, but it had enough “fun” value for me to stick around until the patch that removed bloom, which really did make me enjoy Reach.
Sadly, I can’t find any enjoyment. When I attempt to join matches, I run into the same issue as I see with MCC: horribly lopsided matches. A 50-20 match is no fun, no matter what side you are on. I’m honestly pretty bad now just because I haven’t played in years, but both of these games are terrible at making “fair” matches.
Once you look beyond that issue, you run into the issue of visuals. Not only have many of the formerly iconic weapon designs become almost unrecognizable, but the maps are extremely difficult for me to see on. I’m red-green colorblind, and I’m certain that doesn’t help, but I didn’t have issues seeing on any maps (except Isolation in Halo 3) up to and including Reach.
The gameplay issues I’ve mentioned won’t and can’t be fixed - the game is too far into development. Halo has, in my opinion, lost its identity. I saw a video on YouTube a few weeks ago joking about how similar Advanced Warfare and Halo 5 look, and the sad fact is that it is completely true. 343i has no intention of creating a game that lasts for three years like Halo 2 or Halo 3 did, nor a game that thrives for two years like Reach; this game is intended to be picked up, played, and replaced by the next AAA shooter.
Two months after MCC’s launch, the game is still broken. The game is full of broken promises and irreparably damaged the Halo brand. Those of us who prefer the “classic” games are constantly told to go play MCC. Sadly, we can’t really do that - not only does the game not work well, but any hope of running into a decent population died when the game launched in a nonfunctional state.
“Classic” Halo is dead, and I accept this now. It isn’t coming back - MCC absolutely sealed that.
Halo 5 is as much “Halo” as the Holy Roman Empire was the “Roman Empire.” That doesn’t make it a bad game, but it is unappealing to me. I can only hope the campaigns go in an interesting direction at this point.