The Decline of the Halo Series

For all of you whom haven’t seen Cursed Lemon’s videos here they are:
Video 1
Video 2
Final Word

I encourage all the devs at 343 to listen/watch these videos, and ask themselves before every single gameplay element is added “Will this make the skill-gap smaller?”, and “Will this negatively affect the competitive merit of the game?”, if so, and this decides to be added to the final game, give us the option to turn it off.

Bungie has been continually dumbing down the Halo series, and I’d absolutely love if 343 studios can turn it around. While Lemon hasn’t addressed Reach, I’d just like to briefly point out some of the pros/cons that affect the competitive community.

Pros:
DMR- no more bullet spread

Forge World- so we don’t have to put up with Bungie’s PoS map making abilities

Cons:
Lack of individual damage multiplier- while the DMR was a great addition, in order to lessen the shots required to kill, the damage multiplier must be tuned up to 125%. Unfortunately, this breaks the entire sandbox (snipers are 1 shot kills, etc.)

Armor Abilities- Anything where you can “PrEsS X To LiVe!!” is broken beyond belief. AAs off spawn simply slow down, and dumb down gameplay. Luckily we have the option to turn these off, but they really don’t belong in any competitive setting, including Arena

The Ranking System- As of now, the team-based ranking system has been thrown out the window in favor of an individual one. Halo is a team based game, you win as a team and you lose as a team. There are simply too many gameplay factors to give someone a rating based off their stats. It’s impossible to measure someone’s relative contribution to the team when variables such as communication and power weapon/spawn control come into play. The H2/H3 ranking system wasn’t a bad one, they had their flaws, but their basic concept was correct.

Bloom- Programmed randomness is simply a flaw. While better than the conic spread that existed in H3, this simply doesn’t belong in a competitive setting.

I could go and on, but it’s late and I think you guys get the picture. The next installment to the halo franchise will not succeed if the competitive community is hung out to dry. Don’t try to take the place of CoD as a game catered to the casual individual, instead of the loyal fans who have been following the Halo franchise since CE.

Thanks for your time.

Thank you, Cosssta, for taking the time to leave such thorough feedback. It’s the passionate players, such as yourself, that keep this series going, so thank you for that as well.

Agreed.

When I have time, I will argue some of these points, but I do appreciate your lack of “OMGZ you guyz r teh suxxorz becuz i ned mah BR!”

There is a lot of baseless claims in this post. Also, mentioning COD makes me unwilling to take you seriously as there are NO correlations between the two games.

First of all there is no random spread to the DMR. The Bloom hardly provides random results you just do not know how to use it properly. Do not come on here and tell me that you go to theater and see yourself shooting the person because that simply will highlight the fact you are clueless on how hitscan works. Hitscan is a system that is a superior hit detection system, however the one draw back is the image you see on your screen is nothing more than a ghost and not indicative of what is occuring. This is old news if you know what you are talking about. DMR Bloom and shot placement are fine. I can consistently put people down with 5 shots from the DMR. If you require any more than 7 you simply cannot aim. Why should the damage be upped? You have to eliminate the shields and then take out the users health. With many weapons including the DMR and Magnum, this can be down with 5 shots. Fact. Your lack of damage multiplyer argument is stupid, at best.

The AA system merely adds depth to the game. It doesnt slow it down, or dumb it down as any and all of them have distinct weaknesses that can be exploited. There is no basis to your argument there.

The Halo 3 ranking system was absolutely broken and atrocious. Yes, winning games is the ultimate goal but I have news for you - teammates are out of your hands in many cases and it is simply illogical to punish an individual for consistently having bad teammates or teammates that quite. H3s ranking system was ruined by derankers, people with second accounts, and people going idle. You wound up with people who were legit 50s playing with a new account and ruining the experience for newere players. The current system doesn promote individual achievement you are correct. However the POINT of a slayer match is to get the most kills so it hardly ruins the experience, further you get a substantially higher rating if your team wins.

Stop posting fallacies. The skill gap has hardly been reduced. Your complaints are undermined by the fact you have little to no understanding of how anything in the game including the ranking system works. You are merely complaining due to change. The Armor Abilities barely alter the core gameplay at all.

One last thing - if this game reduced the so called skill gap as you say, why is your KD in arena average at best. You are barely over a kd of 1, that hardly gives you room to discuss the skill level in the game. Judging by your weak KD and ridiculous number of deaths I am assuming this is the rant of an individual who merely cannot adjust without the BR, the most flawed weapon ever, from H3.

The series has far been dumbed down, you do not even know what that term means. If it were dumbed down that means options and play types would be REMOVED. They have been ADDING things for years. What you need to get through your head is the bottom line is, it is their goal to make money. Improving playability brings in new players and therefore new customers. If they made the game damn near impossible for new people then that is counter productive to a buisnesses ultimate goal.

However the changes made to the game play should not, and do not affect, Halo veterans and by no means puts anyone new on equal groud with skill old timers.

If 343 knows what they are doing, they wont listen to people like yourself, who cry about nothing and make nothing more than baseless unsubstantiated claims that are shown to be nothing more than crying or complaining when looking at the performance of the individual ranting online. It always seems like the people who struggle with the game, are the ones demanding it be more like H3 because they simply cannot adapt to modifications to the play environment.

AAs require the ability to adapt, react and change on the fly. They do nothing mroe than provide deeper gameplay and more gameplay options.

Ignore the competetive community. LOL. You have no buisness sense, and further, the true competetive community prides themselves on just that, being competetive and would rather adjust and dominate rather than cry for change because they lack the ability to evolve. The comp. community has never been neglected by Bungie, some of you just like to whine.

> There is a lot of baseless claims in this post. Also, mentioning COD makes me unwilling to take you seriously as there are NO correlations between the two games.
>
> First of all there is no random spread to the DMR. The Bloom hardly provides random results you just do not know how to use it properly. Do not come on here and tell me that you go to theater and see yourself shooting the person because that simply will highlight the fact you are clueless on how hitscan works. Hitscan is a system that is a superior hit detection system, however the one draw back is the image you see on your screen is nothing more than a ghost and not indicative of what is occuring. This is old news if you know what you are talking about. DMR Bloom and shot placement are fine. I can consistently put people down with 5 shots from the DMR. If you require any more than 7 you simply cannot aim. Why should the damage be upped? You have to eliminate the shields and then take out the users health. With many weapons including the DMR and Magnum, this can be down with 5 shots. Fact. Your lack of damage multiplyer argument is stupid, at best.
>
> The AA system merely adds depth to the game. It doesnt slow it down, or dumb it down as any and all of them have distinct weaknesses that can be exploited. There is no basis to your argument there.
>
> The Halo 3 ranking system was absolutely broken and atrocious. Yes, winning games is the ultimate goal but I have news for you - teammates are out of your hands in many cases and it is simply illogical to punish an individual for consistently having bad teammates or teammates that quite. H3s ranking system was ruined by derankers, people with second accounts, and people going idle. You wound up with people who were legit 50s playing with a new account and ruining the experience for newere players. The current system doesn promote individual achievement you are correct. However the POINT of a slayer match is to get the most kills so it hardly ruins the experience, further you get a substantially higher rating if your team wins.
>
> Stop posting fallacies. The skill gap has hardly been reduced. Your complaints are undermined by the fact you have little to no understanding of how anything in the game including the ranking system works. You are merely complaining due to change. The Armor Abilities barely alter the core gameplay at all.

You have no idea what you’re talking about at all, because you’re terrible at halo.

You aren’t nearly good enough to experience any of the problems the OP describes.

> There is a lot of baseless claims in this post. Also, mentioning COD makes me unwilling to take you seriously as there are NO correlations between the two games.
>
> First of all there is no random spread to the DMR. The Bloom hardly provides random results you just do not know how to use it properly. Do not come on here and tell me that you go to theater and see yourself shooting the person because that simply will highlight the fact you are clueless on how hitscan works. Hitscan is a system that is a superior hit detection system, however the one draw back is the image you see on your screen is nothing more than a ghost and not indicative of what is occuring. This is old news if you know what you are talking about. DMR Bloom and shot placement are fine. I can consistently put people down with 5 shots from the DMR. If you require any more than 7 you simply cannot aim. Why should the damage be upped? You have to eliminate the shields and then take out the users health. With many weapons including the DMR and Magnum, this can be down with 5 shots. Fact. Your lack of damage multiplyer argument is stupid, at best.
>
> The AA system merely adds depth to the game. It doesnt slow it down, or dumb it down as any and all of them have distinct weaknesses that can be exploited. There is no basis to your argument there.
>
> The Halo 3 ranking system was absolutely broken and atrocious. Yes, winning games is the ultimate goal but I have news for you - teammates are out of your hands in many cases and it is simply illogical to punish an individual for consistently having bad teammates or teammates that quite. H3s ranking system was ruined by derankers, people with second accounts, and people going idle. You wound up with people who were legit 50s playing with a new account and ruining the experience for newere players. The current system doesn promote individual achievement you are correct. However the POINT of a slayer match is to get the most kills so it hardly ruins the experience, further you get a substantially higher rating if your team wins.
>
> Stop posting fallacies. The skill gap has hardly been reduced. Your complaints are undermined by the fact you have little to no understanding of how anything in the game including the ranking system works. You are merely complaining due to change. The Armor Abilities barely alter the core gameplay at all.

Bloom is programmed randomness. The whole “You don’t know how to do it right” argument doesn’t have a solid basis, because I’d be willing to bet I’m more successful with it than you. My issue exists with players whom don’t time their shots. Player A could time every shot perfectly, allowing the bloom to reset, while Player B could spam the trigger. There is a possibility that Player B could win by dumb luck. While this chance is small, and Player A will win 9/10 times, the randomness of bloom doesn’t always reward the most skillfull player.

In regards to the damage being upped, this is just for custom settings. In an attempt to decrease the kill times and speed up Reach’s gameplay, Killa KC attempted to make the DMR a 4 shot kill. Unfortunately in order to this, the weapon sandbox is broken.

Are you serious about armor abilities not affecting core gameplay? Reach’s default settings are more about pressing “x” than shooting. How do the AAs: camo/armor lock/drop shield not slow down gameplay? Lessening the importance of shooting skill and making it more like rock-paper-scissors to whom had the most valuable AA for that scenario lessens the skill gap significantly. I can dropshield just as well as you can, there isn’t a skill gap involved.

How is 4% a substantial bonus for winning? The penalty to losing is a .96 multiplier to your score. Players go into the game with the intention to -Yoink!- power weapons and increase their rating, no matter what the cost to their team is. Instead of players working to put their teammates in a good position, they are encouraged to play selfishly and only consider their own positioning.

An individually based ranking system in a team-based game is fundamentally flawed. While I absolutely adore the season concept, the way players are rated is horrific. It’s counter-intuitive to the concept of doing whatever is necessary to win. How do you reward players for perfect callouts? It could be the difference between their teammate living or dying, yet they put no shots into the player.

The skill gap has gotten smaller and smaller since CE, and Bungie is in no way hiding that fact.

Edit: You can stop flaming me if you’d like. My 1.23 k/d at Onyx level in Team Arena isn’t something you can exactly call me out on.

Armor abilities are something old presented in a new way, it’s been in Halo since day one, and there are classic gametypes, so that point is now invalid, as power ups are crucial to the Halo formula. You may be able to drop shield better than me, but I can probably armor lock and jet pack better than you. That’s like saying take the vehicles out because it’s unfair to those who don’t have a hog, figure out how to counter it. It’s part of the formula.

The DMR has nothing wrong with it, it acts more like a real weapon, like the BR in Halo 3. In Halo 2 the BR had a programmed spread, real weapons don’t do that, in Halo 3 the BR spread was random, like a real weapon.

Fact: If you take any gun, and just start squeezing off rounds you will lose accuracy. I’m using the DMR/BR as examples but this goes across all weapons, if you want guns that don’t behave like real guns; play a different game. Bloom adds skill because it encourages people to shoot better instead of spray and pray.

The way players are rated has always been horrific, it is across every game, so you can’t pin this on Halo alone. If people stuck together as a team (you, me, Steve, Bob, and Larry) throughout the rest of our gaming lives then yes, a team based rating system would be great. However, that’s not how things work, and it’s a system that would be wasted on most, and take up valuable resources.

Blaming teammates has nothing to do with the game, so that’s void. Battlefield is a team based game, but half the time you can’t get into a squad or the squad doesn’t talk, much like Halo. It’s the people, not the game.

> Armor abilities are something old presented in a new way, it’s been in Halo since day one, and there are classic gametypes, so that point is now invalid, as power ups are crucial to the Halo formula. You may be able to drop shield better than me, but I can probably armor lock and jet pack better than you. That’s like saying take the vehicles out because it’s unfair to those who don’t have a hog, figure out how to counter it. It’s part of the formula.
>
> The DMR has nothing wrong with it, it acts more like a real weapon, like the BR in Halo 3. In Halo 2 the BR had a programmed spread, real weapons don’t do that, in Halo 3 the BR spread was random, like a real weapon.
>
> Fact: If you take any gun, and just start squeezing off rounds you will lose accuracy. I’m using the DMR/BR as examples but this goes across all weapons, if you want guns that don’t behave like real guns; play a different game. Bloom adds skill because it encourages people to shoot better instead of spray and pray.

I forgot a game with aliens and super-humans in mechanized battle suits is supposed to be realistic.

It’s a game, I couldn’t care less what it’s like IRL. If it makes for bad gameplay, it doesn’t have a part in the halo franchise.

It’s really always been like this though, just now there’s a visual representation.

> It’s really always been like this though, just now there’s a visual representation.

It never existed on a mid/long range precision weapon.

The BR in Halo 3 had a random spread, the BR in Halo 2 had a pattern, the faster you shot, the more the gun moved, the less accurate you were, especially at distance. It’s all a part of recoil in Reach, in previous games it was recoil and spread, the reticule bloom is simply a visual representation of it. Much like the guy on the other team with the sniper rifle, just because you didn’t see him didn’t mean he wasn’t there.

Even if the competitive community was catered to, that won’t stop the complaints! Let’s face it: there will always be complainers and some will pull some flaw out of a hat and rant about it!
I’m sure Bungie listens to the community and do changes in their games. Case in point, feedback from the Halo 3 and Halo: Reach Betas. The final version of the games are different from Betas, such as the armor abilities, team colors in Invasion, etc. However, this does not mean Bungie is perfect. No one is. They have their flaws, but they always make fun games that people enjoy playing for one reason or another. Why else would 24.84 million copies be sold (the number comes from the Guinness Book of World Records 2010 Gamer’s Edition)?
Another point to bring up is we do not even know if the next Halo game will be a FPS! 343 could make a 3rd person shooter for all we know or even Halo Wars 2. Putting that into perspective, the points of Cosssta and Cursed Lemon are null and void!

anyone get the feeling that this was designed to offend others? maybe not directly but this is a halo waypoint forum which is probably best for talking about how you enjoy the game, about new updates,etc…

Well, it can also be for critical discussion. I mean, there’s no rule that says we all have to be perfect adoring fans or we can’t be here. Healthy discussion is good for stuff like this. It enhances knowledge and helps people come to a better understanding about the franchise they love.

That being said, the only issue I have with Cursed Lemon’s videos is that it seems like he places a bit too much importance on the professional gamers. Despite what he says in the second video, he really does come across as saying that Bungie should have catered to MLG. He might not have intended to, but that’s how he came across to me.

I’ll give him quite a few of his points though, and I’ll toss in one of my own. Decline of map quality. Halo 1 and 2 had a decent selection of original maps not found in either campaign, yet clearly influenced by some areas. That’s basically the only area where Reach falls short for me, with the multiplayer maps. It’s almost like Bungie said, “Hey, they’ll be able to make maps in Forge, so why even try on the multiplayer maps? We’ll just have them be from the campaign.”

But that’s kind of my only gripe. I suppose if you got down into number-crunching and hair splitting I would be bothered by some of the stuff Cursed Lemon brings up, but I’m not one to crunch numbers or split hairs. As it is, all of the Halo games are still fun for me, despite their flaws. And as such, I will continue to play them.

actually the Multiplayer maps were originally made for multiplayer then ported into the campaign.

My source is the Bungie podcast I cannot remember which one but was earlier this year

> The next installment to the halo franchise will not succeed if the competitive community is hung out to dry.

This is a sweeping an entirely unfounded statement.

The “competitive” community is a TINY minority in the vast population of gamers that make up the Halo-playing community. Despite the fact that you are for all practical purposes inconsequential as a market force or fan voice, Bungie threw you a bone and created a multiplayer list with MLG settings. And how did you pay that generosity back? By displaying airs of manufactured elitism and hurling demands laced with an undeserved sense of entitlement.

You’d also do a lot better if you avoided ever mentioning Cursed Lemon again - he hasn’t commented on Halo Reach because he’s an irrelevant footnote to the Halo franchise who’s cried wolf for so long that he can’t come back without looking like an idiot - and people might have believed was offering objective criticism (and not attention-seeking) at the time if he didn’t include things like anti-gay slurs in his videos.

In point of fact, I have nothing against MLG or the individuals who comprise that community. But to all you sad little fools who think you matter because you farm high k/d ratios, you may want to wait until you get more press than competitive curling before you hop on soapbox and try to start speaking on behalf of what the Halo community “needs.” This thread is a joke.

> Thank you, Cosssta, for taking the time to leave such thorough feedback. It’s the passionate players, such as yourself, that keep this series going, so thank you for that as well.

WOW angel its odd to see you here congrats on you new job I look forward to see what 343 does with a new halo game.

As for the competitve side the post above me is right. Competitive play is a very tiny part of the community and should be the main focus. where I do agree with some of the things you say about AA they make the game moar fun…well at least jet pack does anyways