23 May 2007

Halo3: On To Week Two

Well, its been a healthy 7 days since I started playing the Halo 3 Multiplayer Beta, and I have to say, its absolutely fantastic!!!! There are so many new things about Halo 3 that us multiplayer freaks have wanted for so long, and at long last they've added them to their latest and greatest. And when I say latest and greatest, I really mean it...
For a beta, I am very impressed with the quality of the game. With the minor growing pains that it exhibits, its nearly complete. Heck, I wish Bungie would release just a Multiplayer version of Halo - I'm sure lots of people would love to play it! So, as I always do with anything new, I've tried to find faults in the latest and greatest, and I have found some:
Despite the fact that Halo 3's Multiplayer Beta was designed for maximum enjoyment, including 3 new maps and several new gametypes, I have to admit that there are a few annoyances. First off: Valhala. Beautiful map. Large map. Very large map. Annoyingly large map. Now, I have to admit, there are some gametypes that work well with this stunning map: CTF and Assult. That's about it. And don't get me started on the far-and-few-between location of weapons, or the unfair advantage one may have in the cliff edges that can't be accessed to kill attackers (as far as I know). For a BTB Team Slayer match, it just is too big to move around in. Last night I had a good game of Assult. Quite fun actually as we frantically moved around the maps. But then again, the drop points for the bomb are bottlenecked and make it difficult to retrieve the bomb once their inside their base. But, like I said, there are plus sides to Valhala for massive multiplayer carnage: just not with Team Slayer or VIP. But then there are the weapons:
Of all the new and re-introduced weapons, I have to admit (along with my buddy AJ) I feel that the Battle Rifle has been dropped from my usual gauntlet of "go-to" weapons and replaced by the much improved Carbine. It's faster, easier to use (it was already one of my favorites next to the BR), impressively deadly, and in combination with an automatic rifle, downright necessary. Another nice addition to the weapon selection is the Brute Spike Grenade. Its a very nice addition to the plasma grenade as a "sticky" grenade, and works well in close to mid-range combat situations. But the worst additions to the weapons barrage have to be the Spartan laser, detachable machinegun turrets, and the missle pod. Now, I know that they have tried very hard to balance these weapons with other weapons, but their addition into the game have not been very balanced. Countering machinegun fire is oftentimes impossible once they have you in an open field or in tight spaces (i.e. the caves opposite the rock archway on Valhala). It makes the game very difficult, but then again, its not Halo 2 and I've been trying to play as if it was. I guess I'm just too used to Halo 2 (that, and I haven't played much in the last few months - heck, I've been playing a lot more since the Halo 3 Beta was released, to the chagrin of my girlfriend, who, by the way, says she doesn't mind, but I have a feeling she does).
Well, most of my ranting might just be coming from the lack of gameplay in the last few months (my brother has been busy at that, though) and my expected decrease in skill, but we shall see what comes of it in the next week.

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