Halo: Combat Evolved

January 11, 2006

Seems a bit late to be talking about [i]Halo: Combat Evolved[/i], but some of us are just late to the party every once in a while. I have owned an Xbox for a couple of years now, but I never did get around to playing [i]Halo[/i]. Even though millions of people love this game, I waited for it to hit $20 because it almost sounded like it was overrated. Combine that thought with the fact that a lot of shooters bore me if they don’t bring anything unique to the table, and you can almost see why I played [i]Halo[/i] for the first time last week.

My first piece of advice to myself is this: If a game sells millions and millions of copies, it can’t just be another of the same game within its genre. I thought [i]Halo[/i] would be just another shooter, and combine that with me preferring a mouse and keyboard for controls, and you can once again see my hesitation to play [i]Halo[/i].

Now, I’m sure I’m not the only one in this boat. Everyone has a genre that just doesn’t appeal to them so much, and they need an excellent game to come around to start enjoying that genre again. [i]Halo[/i] did this for me.

I only played [i]Halo[/i] in two sittings before I beat it (granted, on normal difficulty) because I was just that hooked. While it brought a few new things to the shooter genre that weren’t already big before, the real big thing that [i]Halo[/i] brought to us was an excellent storyline that really pulled you in. The more I played, the more I wanted to play. I just had to see what was going to happen next.

I think this is the first shooter in a long time that I really loved. While I’ve liked shooters like [i]Unreal Tournament[/i], [i]Max Payne[/i], [i]Doom 3[/i], etc., this is the first one in a very long time that I truly loved. [i]Halo[/i] really is every bit as awesome as everyone has told me. Why was I so hesitant to believe everybody?

Of course, the major gripe everyone had was the levels and that they all looked the same. It didn’t really bother me though since an unnaturally made structure is likely to look similar all over. It just makes sense from a cost standpoint that every structure would be made in a similar fashion.

I guess the reason I am writing this piece today is because I know I’m not alone. I’m sure there are a few other people out there like myself who don’t like shooters as much as other genres. Perhaps they’ve stayed away from [i]Halo[/i] because they don’t like shooters on consoles, and perhaps for some reason they didn’t bother to get it on the PC.

Either way, anyone who has yet to play [i]Halo[/i] and wants to have some fun with a truly awesome shooter should really check it out. It’s only $20 now, which means that you can get it for even less used. Forget for a moment that you’re not too fond of shooters. Forget for a moment that it was designed for the Xbox. Forget any preconceived notions that you may have about this game. You really owe it to yourself to at least try it out. I finally did, and I honestly wish I had tried it sooner.

[i]Halo[/i] is one of those games that I should have purchased the second I got an Xbox. From now on, I will not hesitate to try out new games that the whole world seems to enjoy. Odds are, if millions of people like the game, there’s good reason for it.

Score: 5/5

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