8 expert reviews - 0 user reviews
We have collected 8 reviews of the Halo 4. Experts rate Halo 4 9.4/10. Reviewsor.com helps you find reviews, best prices, user reviews of the Halo 4 and Xbox 360 games.
Dealing with your expectations can be tough. "I thought you'd be taller," says new-fangled SPARTAN-IV captain Sarah Palmer when meeting up with Master Chief for the first time in Halo 4. Yeah, ain't that a kick in the head: I thought he'd be tucked neatly away in the cryo chamber for a lot longer than five years.But the fact Cortana couldn't even wait for the next Xbox before defrosting Master Chief never really feels like a disappointment. Lavish and meticulous, this is easily one of the most expensive games of all time - and it feels like it, too. As an early cutscene shows a gargantuan starship falling out of the sky, you can actually feel the full brunt of Microsoft's enormous wealth smashing down to the surface of planet Requiem.Halo 4's campaign is at its most comfortable when working overtime on visual spectacle, conjuring up deft, sweeping sci-fi scenes of nearly unrivalled bombast. You'll see entire Covenant armadas blasting streams of gunfire across detailed skies, the wondrous expanse and jutted ledges of majestic Forerunner engineering, and the strongest ever show of UNSC force in this exceedingly armed conflict between huge warships, colossal tanks and monolithic alien structures.
Halo is in new hands. After chronicling humanity's defeat in Halo: Reach, developer and series creator Bungie passed the reins to 343 Industries, who has charted a new course for the iconic Spartan and his AI companion, Cortana. In Halo 4, the duo confronts a fresh new threat to the human race and grapples with mortality in a way the series never has before. The result is the most compelling story a Halo game has ever told, conveyed through a campaign that combines the excellent combat, pacing, and environmental design that have long been hallmarks of the series. The intriguing new cooperative mode feels flimsy, but the competitive multiplayer reasserts itself as one of the most exciting offerings in the genre. Halo 4 doesn't just take the franchise baton in stride; it sprints out confidently to keep Master Chief and company at the head of the pack. At the end of Halo 3, Master Chief and Cortana were adrift on a derelict ship, having just struck the final blow to bring an end to the Covenant's devastating campaign against the human race.
343 Industries had a series of challenges in front of it when it began to create Halo 4: Take a beloved series from the original developer Bungie, maintain the legacy established through a decade of development, and reignite enthusiasm by delivering something new. That is a daunting list, but 343 Industries was clearly up to the task. Halo 4 is a thrilling adventure, and takes the science fiction franchise headlong into the future. The magic formula is intact, but the new development team isn't afraid to put its own signature features into play, assuring that Halo is on a path to growth instead of stagnation. Recent Halo entries felt ancillary to the core story. Halo 4 returns to the resonant drive of the series – Master Chief and his unrelenting defense of humanity. For the first time, the story has an emotional core that grounds the fiction: the connection between John and Cortana. As the two characters face a reemerging threat to the galaxy, we finally gain insight into the mysterious Forerunner race hinted at since Combat Evolved. Along the way, 343 Industries plays around with some heady science fiction concepts, from the nature of artificial intelligence to the planned shaping of a species' evolution.
As usual, of course, the fate of the universe rests on Master Chief's long-dormant shoulders – the green-armored super-soldier has been on ice aboard the Forward Unto Dawn since Halo 3 faded to black five years ago – but this time our hero bears an even greater burden. Saving humanity is the easy part. In Halo 4, his more difficult task is rescuing Cortana from herself. She is slipping into rampancy – a condition that plagues all UNSC AI constructs after they've been in service more than seven years. As their knowledge base expands, they eventually, as Cortana explains, think themselves to death. And that's the unexpected heart of Halo 4's greatness. The plot delves deeper into John's humanity than ever before, but Halo 4 is more about Cortana and the fight for her own – ironically enough – humanity. Amazingly, Halo 4 is not only a success, but a bar-raising triumph for the entire first-person shooter genre. And just how new developer 343 Industries has done it will surprise, delight, and excite you. Familiarly Unfamiliar It starts with a mesmerizing CG cutscene that flat-out knocks you on your ass.
When Microsoft announced that 343 Industries—a brand-new untested studio completely dedicated to carrying on the Halo franchise following the departure of Bungie—just about every fan on the planet was overcome with skepticism. After all, how could a completely new crew possibly deliver an experience that's on par with what Bungie has created? The studio single-handedly saved the Xbox, revolutionized the first-person shooter genre, and changed the way we play games online forever. Those are some massive shoes to fill. Well, I'm pleased to report that Frank O'Connor, Kiki Wolfkill, and the rest of the gang over at 343i have not only managed to craft an experience that lives up to the Halo name, but they've also created a game that takes the series in a bold, new direction. In fact, I'd even go so far as to say that this fresh set of minds with a passion for the franchise and exciting new ideas was exactly what Microsoft's precious sci-fi franchise needed. I never thought I'd say this, but Bungie's departure may have been the best thing that ever happened to Halo. From the outset, 343i made it clear that they would be making a conscious effort to include more of the extended fiction into Halo 4.
As the new stewards of the Halo series, developer 343 industries has managed a rare feat with Halo 4: They've created a worthy sequel to a blockbuster franchise that wasn't initially theirs. Halo 4 has all the big set piece battles players expect, along with dynamic A.I. that lends the enemy an astute level of self-preservation. The game presents a broad palette of tools and weapons to drive players to make impulsive decisions across its myriad sci-fi battlefields. Not every design decision by 343i works as well as others, as you might expect; but for a new studio tasked with delivering the most important Xbox title this year, they take an impressive first step into the future of the Halo franchise. While the essential elements that define Halo remain intact here, Halo 4 demonstrates a genuine effort to either introduce new elements or simply correct old problems. Fans will appreciate new multiplayer features like the ability to join a match-in-progress or the way the HUD labels location of power weapons to help monitor incoming hardware that could tilt a match in their favor.
Halo 4 reveal leaves us wanting moreThey've got the Forerunner architecture right, which is a start. 343 Industries, now stewarding the series after inheriting it from Bungie, has a lot to prove - it's got to make the next entry in one of the most celebrated gaming franchises of all time, for a start.A behind-closed-doors session at Microsoft's Spring Showcase last week saw the studio giving away the barest minimum amount of information that could possibly pass as an announcement. The studio seems reserved, perhaps understandably so, and is determined to hold its cards as close to its chest for as long as possible. No doubt agonising for fans desperate for information about the future of Halo, but understandable perhaps for a team of people still very much existing in the shadow of the series' former developer.At least nobody can accuse this plucky young upstart of lacking ambition, and if there's one thing 343 Industries has emphasised time and time again it's a desire to reinvent the series. "In some ways you can think of Halo 4 as a reboot," says creative director Josh Holmes at the event, "but it's different than reboots you might think of in, say, the Hollywood film world, where you've got film franchises like Star Trek, Batman or Bond." How, exactly?
Last week, during Microsoft Games Studios' annual Spring Showcase, 1UP got a glimpse of developer 343 Industries' new vision for the Halo franchise. While our look of the redesigned Master Chief marked the first time the Halo 4 engine had been shown to the press, it was also a quick reveal with little information. We did see two multiplayer stages: The first, a guided tour through the eyes of a shiny Spartan IV on a stage called Warhouse. The second, a camera fly-through of a brightly lit Forerunner structure called Wraparound. Representatives from 343 also confirmed that the Battle Rifle would be back for the sequel. Multiplayer was clearly the focus for the first big Halo 4 reveal. Afterwards, 1UP EIC Jeremy Parish and Associate Editor Jose Otero sat down to discuss what they'd seen and possible concerns with the latest installment of the Halo series. Jose Otero, Associate Editor: We finally got to see Halo 4 running its new game engine; I just wish our glimpse wasn't so short. Everything I see today makes the iconic Master Chief look bigger, sharper, and faster than when we last saw him in Halo 3. 343's First Look video matches their new vision against 2007's Halo 3 to show just how advanced their latest iteration on the series looks. But let's not forget that Reach already redesigned Halo's aging visuals back in 2010.
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