“It’s time to finish the fight”
Halo 3 begins with our lead Masterchief falling from space on a piece of debris after the climactic ending of the previous game, which i’m afraid you’ll have to research yourself as this is a halo 3 review after all. He lands in a Kenyan forest near the city of New Mombasa, the year 2552’s version of current day Mombasa and is discovered by a group of marines led by Sergeant Avery Johnson. After some control tests disguised as a medical evaluation you’re set to go. There is no leveling up or unlocking new abilities in this game, Masterchief is a goddamn bad-ass as established in the lore and you get all this power from the beginning, this is a game about being a walking tank and the way they make you feel like this is actually rather simple. First off no sprinting just semi quick walking but you can jump as high as a 6″ mans head if not a little higher. You can duel wield small weapons, yield turrets that must be mounted for other humans to use and alien weaponry which is much heavier and bigger than human weapons due to the main alien species, the Elite being over 7″ tall, looks of normal size in your hands. You have an invisible health bar but your main life is a shield meter which recharges once drained but when drained leaves you vulnerable to only a couple of hits depending on difficulty and lastly your punch can break through enemies shields and snap the neck of smaller enemies instantly killing them, the make you a powerhouse but yet the game is still fair. Fairness is achieved through enemy combatants being able to use a wide array of weapons which are far superior in damage and fire rate to anything the humans posse. Enemies are also very versitile from flying units called “drones” to small imp like creatures that attack in packs called “grunts” to large hulking beasts called “hunters” which tower above you and in melee combat are a one hit kill, two hits if they graze you.
This games challenges come in the form of its enemies, there are no puzzles are seemingly impassible terrain here, this game is all about the combat and story. There are quite a lot of difficulties to chose from, the first is the obvious one, easy. The next is normal which is what is recommended you play on and the setting the game was designed around. Next up is heroic, on heroic enemies don’t flee fights as much, have a heightened battle prowess and tend to take advantage of tactics like flanking way more often while also of course just straight up hitting harder. The last is my preferred difficulty, Legendary, this difficulty is virtually impossible for new players, enemies are hyper aware of things like grenades in combat, seem to always hit there target and even the weakest cannon fodder like the “grunts” can suddenly drain your shields in no more than 3 shots. This game-mode is the ultimate challenge, either know the game mechanics inside out or be destroyed by the hoards of overpowered enemies heading towards you.
The game world of halo 3 still holds of design wise to this day. Its a very linear journey across Africa in chase of the covenant as they rip the country apart with atmospheric bombardment as they search for a “holy” artifact left behind by the forerunners. The game environments range from forests to secret military bases to alien worlds and even to a giant ring called Halo which has an earth like structure along the interior of the ring. The colours are vibrant in these alien worlds and muted on earth to show the desperate state our planet is in and how much of a scar the covenants attack have left on humanity.
Why I love this master piece
This games mechanics and world are both attributed to its success but because each game features unique environments and locals i have to say its due to the mechanics in the long run. The game has a hugely simplistic combat system, you have shields, some grenades and some guns now go make the covenant regret messing with humanity, that’s it. Its so simple yet so compelling, i could honestly never get bored of stepping into master chiefs heavy, bad ass boots and i probably never will because even though the game is so simple mechanics wise its so complex in other ways. The AI is flawless they are deadly and relentless yet have a set way each unit moves and acts during and out of combat. The game world is intractable in so many ways because of the games advanced physics, throw a grenade at a heavy crate and it might move a bit, throw one at a small ammo crate and it might just take your head off or your enemies as it flies through the air. Its a game that must be experiences at least once and i will forever love it.