Why MP Ranking Should Be Based On Military Ranks

I’ve enjoyed every Halo (although I’m admittedly partial to the first three), and, like many of you, I’ve sunken nearly two decades of my life into Halo Multiplayer (can’t believe it’s been this long!). And while I’ll likely enjoy whatever 343 delivers on the MP front, I’d really appreciate it if the cosmetic ranking system (meaning the actual symbol or number that you literally see in-game that indicates your rank in a particular playlist) be based on military ranks again a la Halo 3 (Recruit - General). And, to account for the problem where Halo’s old system didn’t accurately represent higher end players, maybe just add a couple new ranks beyond General (e.g. Spartan, MasterChief, Reclaimer, Hero etc.).

Halo 5’s Bronze, Silver, Gold, Platinum etc. is fine, and I understand it’s just a re-skinned version of Halo 3, but it has always felt a bit incongruous with Halo for me. It started back in Reach with the higher levels getting increasingly abstract, but even Reach’s higher ranks were still informed by the narrative of the Haloverse (Forerunner, Reclaimer, Inheritor).

Bronze, Silver, Gold…Champion are like medals one earns in a competition; and I suppose you could make the argument that the canon of 343’s multiplayer is that it’s essentially war games for the Spartans - like a sport they play during downtime to refine their skills and the ranks you earn reflect the ranks they earn in their world. But still, it’s a cosmetic choice that seems designed to cater to our real-world E-Sports crowd more than it seems concerned with being consistent with Halo’s themes, tone, and style.

Everything about the Spartans in 5, and the conceit behind the MP, turns them into these super-powered bros jockeying for bragging rights (even their “playful” pointing at each other animations before a game present a tone that’s just not very serious and not very Halo), in effect transforming them into a simulation of us (or the game-maker’s idea of stereotypical “gamer behavior”) rather than allowing us to become them. All of those artistic choices, combined even with the literal rank I see, have an adverse effect (for me) on honoring the tone and style that makes Halo unique and emotionally powerful. How many other games have the generic “Gold…something” system?

So I’d like to see a return of a numbered ranking system paired with a military grade rank not just because I’m nostalgic and I find that kind of cosmetic ranking system more emotionally resonant and easier to understand, but because there should be aesthetic consistency between a game’s campaign/setting and that game’s multiplayer.

Based on the demo we saw at E3, I believe 343 is headed in the right direction. Let me know if you agree/disagree.

I agree 100% with everything you said.

I know its all im my head, but in Halo Reach I remember seeing symbols and thinking “oh -Yoink-”. I don’t think having a the number “149” had the same effect.

The number rating is super honest it’s saying “this dudes played more time than you” but I like to assume they are better. Bigger hit of dopamine if I win what i assume to be more experinced players. I suppose.

Yeah, i think the military ranks should be used in combination with a number system, where your military rank goes up the more matches you play and experience you earn,
and your number represents your skill rank (between 1 - 50).

why not have both ?

Ranking up in a video game is one of the key factors that keep me playing it.

I love seeing a competitive rank as well as a leveling rank. One is able to tell me how close i am to unlocking new gear (assuming this is the approach 343 is going to take with armor unlocks.) the other tells me how skilled i am against other players.

Leader boards are too simplistic and imo problematic. to much on a screen for me to really even care if im moving up or down in some cases. Not saying we shouldnt have any but to use it in place of competitive rankings like bronze gold champion etc would just seem boring and unoriginal.

I agree though militiary ranks are a must for Halo. Halo Reach hit this in the ball park and I LOVED it.

It’d be great if they could bring something like we saw in Reach, sure you needed to grind a lot and needed a lot of credits but atleast it was more satisfactory to hit “Brigadier” than something like SR46.