Alright, first of all this is my OPINION, so don’t start raging all over the place. Now that we’ve gotten that out of the way, Here’s my problem with Halo 4.
Number 1: The change in art direction. Yes I know that things have to evolve over time to keep things from getting stale, but in my opinion, things took a step backward. The Pelican, the most awesome looking dropship in science fiction history, got a head to tail redesign that in my opinion makes it look like crap. It is one thing they did not need to change. The Marines also look nothing like the Marines from any of the Halo games. I would have been fine with an evolution of the armor that they wear, but 343 had to “make Halo theirs” and make them look like crap. Cortana has, over the course of Halo history, progressively gotten younger looking and much curvier. It’s to the point where in Halo 4, she looks like a twelve year old girl with D-Cups. Seriously?!?!?! I know nerds like to fantasize about women, but there’s a point where it’s almost child -Yoink!-. GameInformer had a great micro article about it in another game a while back. I’m not saying Halo 4 has child -Yoink- in it, but they’re really pushing it. The explosions also are lackluster. For example, in the opening mission when you destroy the Covenant ship with the missile, instead of a grand explosion with the ship consumed in a gigantic fireball, the ship just kind of falls into several pieces. The same thing happens when you shoot down a Phantom, it blows up but most of it kind of disappears.
Number 2: The degradation of multiplayer to make it more “noob friendly”. I hesitate to make the obvious reference to Call of Duty, people tend to rage when they see that, but it’s true. Halo had its own style of multiplayer, THAT’S WHY I PLAYED HALO. I loved both the open vehicle based maps, as well as the small arena style maps. Sadly both the maps and the vehicles themselves in Halo 4 make people stay on foot. The Warthog, the symbol of Halo, is now a useless piece of metal on wheels. All vehicles have been nerfed, to the point where it’s near suicide to get in one,(unless it’s a Gauss 'Hog which is now super over-powered). Maps are all considerably smaller, than those in other games. This adds to the constricted CoD feeling I get when I play. The so called “Big Team” maps are tiny compared to the ones in Halo: Reach. There is no room to maneuver with vehicles, so players generally tend not to use them, which is a big part of Big Team. The whole Loadout system gives players an unfair advantage over others. I loved how Halo started everybody off on even footing, letting the players with more skill and experience gain an advantage because they learned how to play. Now, all players have to do is run around and camp with a boltshot, because it’s a one hit kill. I can’t stand to play now, because that is what most of the players do. The implementation of a one hit kill weapon into a loadout just breaks the mechanics of Halo. The ordinance system allows the winning team to call in weapons faster and gain even more of an advantage. I’ve played games on Ragnarok where the other team has 3-4 people with sniper rifles and/or Beam/Binary rifles. My team couldn’t get out of the base or even move because there would be four people ready to snipe them right when they get out the base. The Join-In-Progress system needs work, 4/5 times when I join a game in progress, the team I join is getting beat down HARD. There is no chance of victory, even if we get additional players. It’s just an overall unpleasant experience.
Number 3: Spartan Ops could have been much better. Instead of innovating, and making a decent story with cutscenes and new maps, 343 just has you running around pressing buttons and fending off waves of enemies on rehashed multiplayer and campaign maps, (Crimson press this button, Crimson press that button,Crimson kill these dudes, Crimson kill those dudes Crimson, Crimson, Crimson, Crimson, CrimsonCrimsonCrimson). Yes there is somewhat of a story with the weekly videos, but why isn’t there any of your player? It seems kind of odd that you can customize your Spartan with different armor and visor colors, but you never really get to see them, (unless you die, then you can really admire how awesome you look for a few seconds). I also don’t care for having to have a Gold Membership to be able to play, I used to never be able to play online until a few years ago, and many people aren’t able to play because they don’t have a decent internet connection. 343 should have at least made Spartan Ops system link compatible.
Number 4 The incorporation of sprint into the Campaign, in my opinion, was a big mistake. Instead of walking around admiring how good everything looks, (And it does, Halo 4 has pretty awesome graphics), it seems that when you put in sprint, you are constantly waiting for Master Chief to catch his breath so you can continue sprinting. You don’t really get a chance to slow down and look at things in depth. Think about it this way, if you are sprinting through the woods, how much detail do you notice in the world around you? How much detail would you notice if you were walking? In Halo 4 the player doesn’t get a chance to enjoy the environments 343 has designed because they are too busy sprinting through the areas. This wouldn’t have been such a big problem (for me at least), if the environments were a bit bigger. If they were, it would take longer to get from point A to point B, and give the player a bit more to look at. I feel like when I go through the Campaign, I’m just sprinting to press this, sprinting to kill that. The final “Boss” fight was a bit short, and lackluster. More work could have been put into it instead of a single button QTE. Overall the campaign felt rushed, and ultimately, too short.
Overall it seems 343 Industries tried to expand its fanbase by trying to take fans away from Call of Duty, by making Halo more like CoD. This (unfortunately) is an excellent business model, by putting in as little effort as you can, but maximizing profits. Most of my “Hardcore” Halo friends, and myself are severely disappointed by Halo 4. In fact I don’t know anybody that likes it. (I’m not saying that nobody likes it, but neither me nor any of my friends do). To us (My friends and I), it seems a betrayal of Halo’s hardcore fanbase in order to pull in more money from CoD fans.
Once again, EVERYTHING IN THIS POST IS MY OPINION, so try not to rage too much if you deign to post a reply to this. Thanks =)