Halo 3 – This gamer’s first online experience…and an experience it was. This game is arguably one of the best games to have come out in the 2000’s. Yeah, I said it. Arguably, one of the best games in the entire 21th century. Let’s see why.
Blue Ball Score: 24 out of 25 balls
The gameplay was phenomenal. Simple controls. If you are used to playing first person shooters, the controls will come seemingly natural. What if I am not used to shooters since guns are bad (according to Obama)? Well, this game offers a simple learning tutorial at the beginning to get you started quickly. And, if you despise the default controls (much like I did), you can choose from several different variants. One memorable, and popular, layout was the good ol “Bumper Jumper.” This layout was for us that jumped, toggled crouching in midair, and shot at the same time. And, yes, with the “Bumper Jumper” layout it was quite easy to do this.
Customizations? If you are looking for extreme character customization, you have come to the wrong place. Halo 3 was a game centered on solid campaign and multiplayer functionality. If you are looking for extreme character customization, then I would recommend going back to Skyrim kid. That being said, you did have the basic armor customizations on multiplayer (helmet, body, simple color choices, basic emblems, etc.). I think we can all remember the sexually insinuating “grenade” emblem (I promise to revisit this later). But, where the game lacked in character customization, they made up for in map customization. Using the “Forge” game mode, you could take a map and make it look how you wanted it. There have been several unique and extremely fun/addicting game modes to come out of forged maps, including: Bumper cars, race tracks, zombies, paintball, and many more. We have all tried to make a kickass map at least once in our day, but majority of us have failed miserably.
Overall, the mechanics of the game were as solid as a brick in an Alaskan winter. The controls were easy to learn, the layout was similar to most other first-person shooters, the game allowed its audiences to focus on the game itself rather than worry about what color their Jerry Curls are, and offered a fun and creative “Forge” mode. 5/5 balls.
Remember I mentioned the customizable aspects of the game earlier? Well, we will revisit that in this section. As mentioned previously, extreme customization is not offered, but there was some basic aspects of customization, such as: Choosing between Spartan or Elite, different armor variants, selecting the color(s), and designing a basic emblem. We can all remember the classy penis emblem (horizontal gradient + grenade). And, yes, I used this emblem.
Finally, there were several different game modes offered for multiplayer. It contained the most common game modes (slayer, big team battle, capture the flag, all in all etc.), but Bungie also created some unique playlists to spice things up. One that instantly comes to mind is the legendary… GRIFBALL!!! We all remember playing this football-like playlist for hours on end. It provided some very intense moments while making its players laugh.
As a brief side-note, I want to give props to the matchmaking ability. Meaning, if you had a full team of 4, it would try and party you up with another team of 4. If that wasn’t possible, it would look for a team of 3 + a random. This was extremely helpful to prevent the aforementioned spawn killing/“green team slaughter”. This wasn’t a perfect system, but, as all of my girlfriends have told me, “it is the effort that counts.”
All in all, the multiplayer experience was, in my opinion, in the top 3 of best multiplayers ever. Yes, ever. It offered balanced maps, a variety of game modes to suit style of play, a strong matchmaking ability, a perfect combination of fun and competitiveness, and an overall immerse experience. 5/5 balls.
The map design/layout for the campaign? Creative and immerse. The levels were large and contained different layers. Meaning, there was usually a top, middle, and bottom part of the levels. For example, you may have snipers in the top of trees, and you were in the middle or bottom of the level. Also, you could look out on the horizon and see an island or a flock of birds fluttering around. This added a touch of realism that was much appreciated by its players.
So you have the main storyline, so what? I have ADHD and I get bored easily. To keep things interesting, Bungie added several “Easter Eggs” within the campaign. For example, they added the “Skulls” which, once found, allowed you to enable special gameplay effects in the campaign. Majority of these skulls made the campaign more challenging, with one exception. The “IWHBYD” skull which added in humorous dialogue. We all came to love the dialogue that was expressed from the grunts (especially the infamous “Last Grunt”). Also, they added in “Terminals” which provided a backstory in the Halo Universe. For those Halo fanboys, this was much needed information.
A question asked by everyone, “How is the ending?” Beautiful. I don’t want to ruin the ending to this game if you have not played it yet. I don’t care how old it is. There are still people who have not experienced the heaven of Halo 3. But, I will say that it ends in fire, flames, and explosions. And, if you are skilled enough to beat it on Legendary, there is that little extra “tidbit” to the ending.
Enough ranting. Campaign was vast, interesting, creative, mysterious, and always sexy. 5/5 balls.
The sound effects were solid. As mentioned above, the sound effects from the grunts were memorable to say the least. Every game leaves me seemingly wanting more sound grandiose sounds (a common trend you will notice in my reviews), but that is just due to my unhealthy obsession for large explosions.
Final verdict? The graphics and sound were a bit lacking for this gamer, but were satisfying enough for the average person. And, as always, rating graphics in retrospect is extremely hard due to the rapid pace of technological growth. I give this 4/5 balls.
Yes. Halo 3 offered a beautiful balance. You could not help, but have fun while playing this game. Whether you are being a total jackass and riding around on the back of a Mongoose with rockets, or you and a buddy are having elephant sex (see images below) on the map “Sandtrap.” Obviously, there were different game modes offered for the varying styles. Personally, I enjoyed the competitiveness of the MLG playlist. Admittedly, I was a true “wannabe,” and I knew all the callouts, spawn times, etc., but I enjoyed acting like I was a pro.
And, better yet, playlist were divided between Ranked and Social. For the first year it was out, Big White Angus refused to play ranked and was a proud Master Sergeant (what a n00b). The ranking system even consisted of ranking + social (exp) system.
In regards to the campaign, the aforementioned skulls allowed you to keep the campaign interesting, challenging, and as spicy as an 18 year old’s sex life. This game never gets old and I could play this game anytime. My classic punchline was: “1v1 me. BR’s and Snipes only.”
Final verdict? This game offered several ways to have fun, be competitive, or even both at the same time. 5/5 balls.