Halo 5 Guardians Review - Reclaiming and Redeeming a Franchise

Halo 5 Guardians Review - Reclaiming and Redeeming a Franchise

Halo 5's campaign and multiplayer offerings excel thanks to great level design and a needed evolution in their gameplay mechanics, even if the story falters for being more set-up than pay-off.

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The more I hear about this game the more I sense my nostalgia goggles melting away. Maybe I will get this!

Though hopefully by 'goosebumps music' you mean 'original music'. The nostalgia hearing aid is still firmly in place; nothing can surpass the works of Marty.

I actually liked this in prior games:
"Typically, the other players would just inexplicably drop into the game as clones of players one."
I even wish more games used it because I dont really care if the story stops making sense, I know that it was my option to play with a friend and I want to play a lot of games with my friends. Make the cutscenes the same as they are but in gameplay moments let there be a team of 3 more other random dudes, Halo 3 even had two other different elites so that no character was the same.

But more on topic, lets hope that its really that good because so far there has been plenty of information that didnt made me very happy

Calls the game "stellar" in the first paragraph. Spends most of the review describing why it is less than stellar...

I will admit I am a solid Halo head and I must have this! Time to shell out and get an Xbone before the year is out.

Good to see they not only return to the basics with Arena, but Warzone sounds like a ton of fun, sign me up! Gonna miss split screen, was planning on doing that with a friend, but online co-op is still there, so its not so bad.

The TERRIBLE AI of 4 was what I hated most. It was just such a downgrade from Reach. So I'll have to see if I can stand it in 5 before I purchase.

Also the uninspired enemies and weapons. Are Prometheans still weak dumb little dog things and giant bullet sponge knights? Are theyre weapons just exact copies of existing ones but orange?

TizzytheTormentor:
I will admit I am a solid Halo head and I must have this! Time to shell out and get an Xbone before the year is out.

Good to see they not only return to the basics with Arena, but Warzone sounds like a ton of fun, sign me up! Gonna miss split screen, was planning on doing that with a friend, but online co-op is still there, so its not so bad.

Don't worry Tizzy, I'll be there to stab you in the back watch your six and kick ass.

Warzone does seem pretty rad. I'd love a mode like Killzones Warzone though.

Bottom Line: Halo 5 proves that 343 is a worthy team for taking over the Mantle of Responsibility for the Halo series from Bungie.

Too bad that Halo 4 already proved that 343 wasn't a worthy team for taking over the Mantle of Responsibility for the Halo series from Bungie. :P

Thomas Barnsley:
The more I hear about this game the more I sense my nostalgia goggles melting away. Maybe I will get this!

Though hopefully by 'goosebumps music' you mean 'original music'. The nostalgia hearing aid is still firmly in place; nothing can surpass the works of Marty.

I've been playing Halo since the original, and loved Marty's score. But I actually do think Davidge's score in 4 was perhaps the best in the series, at least in terms of melody, diversity, and production values. However, Marty's work was almost always more consistent - and Bungie implemented it far better into gameplay, than 343 did with Davidge - and the other guy's - work.

Ultimately, I think Marty's style was perfect for Bungie's era and tone, and Davidge absolutely knocked it out the park for 343's slightly grittier, more mature/serious and emotional tone.

Re Halo 5: very disappointed to see the campaign sliding towards co-op focus. Still curious to play it for myself, mind...

[edit]

Huh, seems 'the other guy' from 4's OST composed 5's score. Would've preferred Davidge to continue, but I suppose Jinnouchi really didn't do too badly on 4, either.

I have to say, if I didn't have a hate boner for the Xbone, this would probably make me get one.

Side note: The allied AI has always been terrible. The inclusion of orders just gives it a new way to screw up. I gave up on my allies in Halo 3 when my attempts at finishing legendary were stymied by Johnson and his infinite ammo spartan laser constantly bulls-eyeing me and that is a trend that has continued throughout every game. I think the only guy I didn't have a problem with was Jorge and that was because his character design prevented him from being harmful to me.

God damn it fine 343, maybe you've shown you can make a good game. You wait till Christmas when I go home and play it for myself and I'll decide whether or not I still hate you.
Bitches.

Everything I've read and seen fills me with dread and foreboding.
80% of the campaign spent with someone I don't give a crap about? Sounds like a plan, wonder how it'll turn out.

They can't really get the soundtrack wrong though, so I suppose there is some small thing to keep my hopes up about.

Soo, they recreated Opposing Force in the Halo universe and called it a full game? Wunderbar!

I wish more outlets would mention how much is actually missing from the multiplayer suite at launch compared to past games. No forge, no file share, downgraded theater, no Big Team Battle, no oddball, no King of the Hill(Stronholds is more domination or 3 Plots in Halo), no Assault(Bomb), Juggernaut, missing community based gametypes like Infection and grifball. 343 didn't even bring back their own gametypes from Halo 4 like Extraction, Regicide, and Ricochet.

The online multiplayer and custom games are anemic compared to past games, especially if you are more interested in the Arena aspect of which their are 3 modes that can considered 'default', being the Slayer, Flag, and strongholds mentioned in the review.

Wait...did I read that right? There are fifteen missions in the campaign, and twelve of those missions you are playing as Locke and his team? Which means that I play as Linda--er, I mean Master Chief--for only three missions? Not going to lie, that's more than a little disappointing. I was really looking forward to finally getting to spend time with Kelly, Fred, and Linda, as those three have become pretty legendary in the books, and because they have always been missing from the games themselves. The focus better shift back to them in Halo 6, however long that's going to take.

I still want to get this game, and I still need to buy a Xbox One, but now I won't be chomping at the bit quite as much as I was before.

TheSapphireKnight:
I wish more outlets would mention how much is actually missing from the multiplayer suite at launch compared to past games. No forge, no file share, downgraded theater, no Big Team Battle, no oddball, no King of the Hill(Stronholds is more domination or 3 Plots in Halo), no Assault(Bomb), Juggernaut, missing community based gametypes like Infection and grifball. 343 didn't even bring back their own gametypes from Halo 4 like Extraction, Regicide, and Ricochet.

The online multiplayer and custom games are anemic compared to past games, especially if you are more interested in the Arena aspect of which their are 3 modes that can considered 'default', being the Slayer, Flag, and strongholds mentioned in the review.

Ah, my thanks to you stranger for providing a rational reason to complain instead of just hating the Xbone.

Have a cookie.

TheSapphireKnight:
I wish more outlets would mention how much is actually missing from the multiplayer suite at launch compared to past games. No forge, no file share, downgraded theater, no Big Team Battle, no oddball, no King of the Hill(Stronholds is more domination or 3 Plots in Halo), no Assault(Bomb), Juggernaut, missing community based gametypes like Infection and grifball. 343 didn't even bring back their own gametypes from Halo 4 like Extraction, Regicide, and Ricochet.

The online multiplayer and custom games are anemic compared to past games, especially if you are more interested in the Arena aspect of which their are 3 modes that can considered 'default', being the Slayer, Flag, and strongholds mentioned in the review.

Another thing not mentioned: microtransactions.

Sniper Team 4:
Wait...did I read that right? There are fifteen missions in the campaign, and twelve of those missions you are playing as Locke and his team? Which means that I play as Linda--er, I mean Master Chief--for only three missions? Not going to lie, that's more than a little disappointing. I was really looking forward to finally getting to spend time with Kelly, Fred, and Linda, as those three have become pretty legendary in the books, and because they have always been missing from the games themselves. The focus better shift back to them in Halo 6, however long that's going to take.

I still want to get this game, and I still need to buy a Xbox One, but now I won't be chomping at the bit quite as much as I was before.

To be fair, one of the player options in osiris is Nathan Fillion's character from ODST and Halo 3, so assuming you can swap to him instead of Locke...

Windknight:

Sniper Team 4:
Wait...did I read that right? There are fifteen missions in the campaign, and twelve of those missions you are playing as Locke and his team? Which means that I play as Linda--er, I mean Master Chief--for only three missions? Not going to lie, that's more than a little disappointing. I was really looking forward to finally getting to spend time with Kelly, Fred, and Linda, as those three have become pretty legendary in the books, and because they have always been missing from the games themselves. The focus better shift back to them in Halo 6, however long that's going to take.

I still want to get this game, and I still need to buy a Xbox One, but now I won't be chomping at the bit quite as much as I was before.

To be fair, one of the player options in osiris is Nathan Fillion's character from ODST and Halo 3, so assuming you can swap to him instead of Locke...

Nothing I've seen indicates you get a choice in the campaign over who you play, Locke is (Oh I'm going there!) locked.

No armor powers? No loadouts? Oh sure, lets give in to the WHINING from all the Halo fanboys who hate to acknowledge that armor powers have been a thing since Halo Reach, and realistically, as pick ups in Halo 3. Once again the Halo fanbase refuses to evolve with the times. Almost all modern shooters have loadouts, but not Halo. No... it's just as stale as it ever was.

Ugh. That that's going to make it annoying when I pick up the game later on. You can't just pretend that armor powers weren't a thing. But sure, lets cater to all the people who cried foul at Halo Reach and Halo 4 for daring to be even REMOTELY similar to Call of Duty, not that I personally ever found the armor powers to be anywhere near close to that. They fit in with the Halo universe. But sure, reject them. Get rid of them entirely so that people won't cry about getting killed by someone using invisibility that anyone could observe, or a jetpacker than any idiot could see in the sky.

Halo 'fans' don't want the game to evolve past what it was in Halo 2. Personally, I thought the Armor powers added much needed flavor to the multiplayer. But yeah, get rid of all of that. Fuck the people that liked it. I guess I'll end up getting bored as shit with this game just like I did with Halo 3.

Sniper Team 4:
Wait...did I read that right? There are fifteen missions in the campaign, and twelve of those missions you are playing as Locke and his team? Which means that I play as Linda--er, I mean Master Chief--for only three missions? Not going to lie, that's more than a little disappointing..

It's one of the hallmarks of the Halo series that it takes what the fans want and then profoundly ignores it.

Halo 2, skips over the first battle of Earth in two missions and punts you back to another Halo.
Halo 3, skips over the fight in the Dreadnought and the second battle of Earth, briefly focuses on the defense of Earth only to punt you off to a Forerunner installation containing yet another Halo. Also skips over the adventures of Arbiter and Half Jaw (UNACCEPTABLE!).
Halo: ODST, actually that one's pretty cool.
Halo: Reach, skips over Operation: RED FLAG and the Spartan II's ill fated defense of Reach for some randoms you never heard of before and never see again.
Halo 4, skips over the tale of Chief and Cortana trying to get home and instead shoves in a Forerunner bad guy and yet another doomsday plot.
Halo 5, skips over Master Chief/Blue Team's search for Cortana, 117's increasingly unhinged state and the chain of events that led to Cortana suddenly being both alive and the bad guy. Instead puts in some new guy's shoes for a round the houses tour of places and people we have no reason to care about. Brings the Arbiter back but no Shipmaster Half Jaw (ALSO UNACCEPTABLE!).

On a side note Halo's various trailers frequently show or tease things that bare no relation to the game too. So Halo 5 carries on the tradition of demonstrating why Halo fans are the most forgiving in the world!

MiskWisk:
I have to say, if I didn't have a hate boner for the Xbone, this would probably make me get one.

Side note: The allied AI has always been terrible. The inclusion of orders just gives it a new way to screw up. I gave up on my allies in Halo 3 when my attempts at finishing legendary were stymied by Johnson and his infinite ammo spartan laser constantly bulls-eyeing me and that is a trend that has continued throughout every game. I think the only guy I didn't have a problem with was Jorge and that was because his character design prevented him from being harmful to me.

They were ok in Halo 2; I once had these two marine chicks follow me through almost the entire Regret mission, even into the elevators, on Heroic. And I don't think it was some kind of invincibility glitch, since I did occassionally see them die before I died.

Then again, I was playing the sacred icon mission the other day, and one of the elite buddies I got drove his ghost straight off a cliff almost as soon as he got deployed. "Do not squander their talent," halfjaw told me. Yeah, righto mate.

As I'm reading this, I have 3.5 hours until I can play. I haven't been this excited for a launch in some time. I can barely wait.

Sheo_Dagana:
No armor powers? No loadouts? Oh sure, lets give in to the WHINING from all the Halo fanboys who hate to acknowledge that armor powers have been a thing since Halo Reach, and realistically, as pick ups in Halo 3. Once again the Halo fanbase refuses to evolve with the times. Almost all modern shooters have loadouts, but not Halo. No... it's just as stale as it ever was.

Ugh. That that's going to make it annoying when I pick up the game later on. You can't just pretend that armor powers weren't a thing. But sure, lets cater to all the people who cried foul at Halo Reach and Halo 4 for daring to be even REMOTELY similar to Call of Duty, not that I personally ever found the armor powers to be anywhere near close to that. They fit in with the Halo universe. But sure, reject them. Get rid of them entirely so that people won't cry about getting killed by someone using invisibility that anyone could observe, or a jetpacker than any idiot could see in the sky.

Halo 'fans' don't want the game to evolve past what it was in Halo 2. Personally, I thought the Armor powers added much needed flavor to the multiplayer. But yeah, get rid of all of that. Fuck the people that liked it. I guess I'll end up getting bored as shit with this game just like I did with Halo 3.

The Armor Abilities were terrible for balance, terribly designed and completely fucked the flow of Halo.

People accepted Equipment in Halo 3 because they were essentially Power Weapons like the Rockets or Sniper, but for utility instead of offense. And they could be kept track of and seen and spawned and controlled like a power weapon, unlike Armor Abilities.

Halo is designed around people starting every match and every spawn on equal footing - Loadouts completely destroyed that. Loadouts in Halo would be like removing ADS from CoD, or hipfiring from Quake.

"sprinting resets your shield recharge cooldown"
YAY i remember 343i talking about this feature back when Halo 4 was released, glad to see they implemented it, Halo 4 multiplayer was full of people just running away from fights.

 

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