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Playing the technical test has convinced me Halo Infinite is great, actually(PCGamer)



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 2 months ago '12        #1
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Faythung 
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Playing the technical test has convinced me Halo Infinite is great, actually(PCGamer)
 

 
Last weekend's Technical Test showed us a 343 that's learning the right lessons.

image

What do I even want from a new Halo?

That's a question I've asked myself repeatedly since Halo Infinite's announcement. My fondness for the series is so tangled up in nostalgia for Bungie's original trilogy that it makes it hard to answer. 343 has been a somewhat reckless caretaker for the trilogy since taking ownership—and between the studio's own entries veering wildly in quality and not even The Master Chief Collection safe from the studio's meddling, I'd resigned my love of Halo to being stuck firmly in the past.

After last weekend's technical test, however, I reckon Infinite could be just what I'm looking for from the future of Halo.

First, let's get the obvious caveats out of the way. Our Infinite debut was a technical test, not a demo. Framerates were choppy, load times were often obscene, crashes were infrequent and the build was riddled with small, frustrating bugs. Nevertheless, Infinite already feels like a welcome return to the more playful sandboxes of older games.
image

The weekend let us play team slayer matches across three maps (Live Fire, Reactor and Bazaar) against bots. New to the series, these incredibly-named AI opponents only just put up a f*ght—but while almost every match was a steamroll, they gave us a chance to experiment with Infinite's new arsenal in a live setting.

Far from the redundant bloat of Halos 4 and 5 (which saw three entire "factions" of different-coloured shotguns, a*sault rifles and SMGs) Infinite's weapons feel tight and balanced. Old favourites have been tuned to fit better into the overall sandbox (the a*sault Rifle feels viable now, while the Battle Rifle is no longer the absolute go-to weapon), while new weapons find their own interesting niches—from the rapid-fire Bulldog shotgun to the Skewer, a hefty, brutal thing that fires massive railroad spikes through people. Even the Pulse Carbine finds a place beyond just being "the alien Battle Rifle", instead firing slower plasma bursts that veer towards opponents.
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Halo 3-style equipment also makes an explosive comeback. Littered across the map are deployable shields, radar scanners, and grappling hooks to mix up firef*ghts. The hook is a particular fave, working almost identically to Pathfinder's grapple from Apex Legends—letting you swing up and around ledges, or violently pull yourself into an opponent to land a brutal Gravity Hammer swing. Your AI buddies will call out when the spiciest of these, Active Camouflage (invisibility) or Overshields are due to spawn, making every run for them feel particularly tense.

Crucially, all this chaos is driven by a truly ridiculous physics system. We're already seeing clips of people trying to blast power weapons closer to them using grenades, then frantically trying to catch it with the grappling hook when it blows off course. It's incredible, the kind of emergent, physics-driven nonsense that's always been a highlight of our own Halo 3 sessions.

343 has long experimented with making Halo movement a little more interesting, and I think they may have cracked it here. Yes, I was as upset as anyone at seeing them put sprint in my beloved Halo, but it's such a minor speed boost that it feels almost unnoticeable—except, of course, when it comes to sliding.

Halo's always been a gamepad shooter, and that's how I approached Infinite at first. But immediately upon switching to keyboard, my Apex Legends muscle memory kicked in, and suddenly I was slide-hopping off every incline. You're still a slow, bulky super-soldier, of course. You're not nipping around like a Titanfall pilot. But the maps open up a whole lot more once you realise every ledge can be mantled, every slope a chance for a slight speed boost.

Without full-on sprinting, thrusters or jetpacks, Infinite isn't as hectic as 4, 5, or even Reach—but the introduction of more informal movement tools has a huge effect on how firef*ghts play out. I'll always have a soft spot for the slow, floaty jumps of the Bungie Halos. Ten years on, however, and I'm excited for Halo movement to feel as good as its gunplay.
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Besides slayer, a firing range gave players a welcome avenue for getting a feel for each gun—with increasing levels of difficulty that sees targets strafe and dodge your shots. The technical test also gave us a look at Infinite's customisation and battle passes, which while notable for never expiring, are themselves nothing particularly out of the ordinary. The omission of traditional colour choices in exchange for premade "coatings" still stings, especially when even higher-rarity coatings look a little naff.

And while I'm all here for the game's armour designs (which sits somewhere comfortably between Halo 3 and Reach), the same can't be said for its maps. Bazaar, especially, feels like a sort of generic desert town you could pluck out of any Modern Warfare lineup. You could pin this down to the test's maps being small, but even the most compact of Bungie's Halo maps were oozing with character.

There's generally a strange sense of unease simmering under the game's aesthetic, only heightened by a No Man's Sky-esque Post-rock soundtrack during matches. It's good music, and might even feel more fitting on the vast sci-fi vistas of the game's campaign. But it feels wildly jarring inside a tense round of Team Slayer inside a concrete power station.

Considering the limited scope of the test, there are still too many unknowns to really judge Halo Infinite. Where do vehicles fit into Infinite's sandbox? What do custom games look like in a free-to-play Halo? I won't truly know how I feel about Infinite until I'm soaring above my regular Halo pals in a Banshee, watching utter carnage unfold below.

But I liked what I saw this weekend. A game that recognises what makes Halo distinctly "Halo", a throwback to Bungie's greats while acknowledging where shooters have gone in the last 10 years. Keep this up, and Halo Infinite could be something quite special indeed.


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 2 months ago '16        #2
Quinn 
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i always said i hated the mechanics of halo, but it after playing the preview i may actually play halo.

it really felt like a hardcore CoD, and that could be that my expectation for performance was non-existent, removing the pressure of winning made it enjoyable.

i had fun, couple hours left in preview
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 2 months ago '06        #3
Kingme 
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343 nailed it.

I forgot how fun it is to still have a chance at getting a k*ll after you get shot first. The weapon balance felt good. Health and damage was fair. Can't wait to check out the vehicles and the 12v12 maps/matches
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 2 months ago '20        #4
Keep God First 
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They’re desperate for this game to be good. It looks boring and uninspired
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 2 months ago '18        #5
BlackjesuS  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x1
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 Keep God First said


They’re desperate for this game to be good. It looks boring and uninspired
Felt like I had a new 360 again
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 2 months ago '17        #6
SPdaGOAT  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x4
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Halo is done bruh, they need to move on from this sh*t.
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 2 months ago '17        #7
Lazy 
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 Keep God First said


They’re desperate for this game to be good. It looks boring and uninspired
I’m not a post Halo 3 fan but the preview MP was actually pretty good

The movement mechanics in particular remind me of UT99

If getting it right is why they delayed this game so much they made the right call
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 2 months ago '16        #8
Novii  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x1
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I legit watched this game on many diff YouTube channels live. From gamespot to ign to randalThor, colt etc. And I don’t get the hype narrative at all.

If you played the tech test, ask yourself what Halo does different or better than any other shooter available right now? Bf2042 got hang gliders and tornadoes and 100+ people per map etc. What’s Halo doing?

Game doesn’t move the needle in any meaningful way like the original did, and it seems that people are just happy it’s in a better place than the reveal last year despite all the FUD around it. That doesn’t make it ACTUALLY good. It makes it good by contrast.

I played and enjoyed halo with my boys back in the day too. But the shooter market is over saturated right now for a game that looks decent to be paraded off as “amazing”. The Xbox community is OD as usual with the superlatives.
“Stunning” “breathtaking” “amazing”

Obviously the game is going to do numbers. It’s free, and going to be marketed like crazy because it’s a well known franchise. But is it going to pull gamers away from Fortnite? Apex? Warzone? PubG? Over watch? BF 2042??
This is the battle royale era. We went from squad vs another squad or lobby. To squads vs a lobby of other squads. Halo looking dated af out here

Game looked mid. Not terrible, not amazing. Just another shooter from Halo. It also isn’t anymore visually impressive than Destiny 2 either. Is a grappling hook supposed to make everyone drop what they doing?

But slap away.
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 2 months ago '12        #9
Faythung  OP
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 Novii said
Bf2042 got hang gliders and tornadoes and 100+ people per map etc. What’s Halo doing?

 2 months ago '16        #10
Novii  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x1
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 Faythung said
Is that not something they’re showing off currently to sell the product?
There’s a lot more features but I posted what interested me.

I notice you quoted the question without answering it. What is Halo Infinite doing different in an over saturated market in 2021?

I don’t post opinions for people to agree with me I post em to start conversations. I don’t hate any of you dudes, I’m here to talk gaming and some of you just here to slap

Edit: what? I can be a fan of the original but it’s a problem if I’m not a fan of the newest addition?
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 2 months ago '17        #11
SPdaGOAT  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x4
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I agree with literally everything you saying @.

Halo just looks hella stale now when you look at the other shooters on the market. If I still loved Halo I’d still be hype for this but this screams same ol same ol to me

 2 months ago '06        #12
Kingme 
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 Novii said
I legit watched this game on many diff YouTube channels live. From gamespot to ign to randalThor, colt etc. And I don’t get the hype narrative at all.

If you played the tech test, ask yourself what Halo does different or better than any other shooter available right now? Bf2042 got hang gliders and tornadoes and 100+ people per map etc. What’s Halo doing?

Game doesn’t move the needle in any meaningful way like the original did, and it seems that people are just happy it’s in a better place than the reveal last year despite all the FUD around it. That doesn’t make it ACTUALLY good. It makes it good by contrast.

I played and enjoyed halo with my boys back in the day too. But the shooter market is over saturated right now for a game that looks decent to be paraded off as “amazing”. The Xbox community is OD as usual with the superlatives.
“Stunning” “breathtaking” “amazing”

Obviously the game is going to do numbers. It’s free, and going to be marketed like crazy because it’s a well known franchise. But is it going to pull gamers away from Fortnite? Apex? Warzone? PubG? Over watch? BF 2042??
This is the battle royale era. We went from squad vs another squad or lobby. To squads vs a lobby of other squads. Halo looking dated af out here

Game looked mid. Not terrible, not amazing. Just another shooter from Halo. It also isn’t anymore visually impressive than Destiny 2 either. Is a grappling hook supposed to make everyone drop what they doing?

But slap away.
If you legit played Halo back in the day, do yourself a favor and play Infinite for free when it drops. It's fun bro, you think about it when you're not playing it.

 2 months ago '04        #13
Wawdy24 
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 Kingme said
If you legit played Halo back in the day, do yourself a favor and play Infinite for free when it drops. It's fun bro, you think about it when you're not playing it.
He got emotional watching Xbox players have fun playing a game that the Sony Defense Force sh*t on for over a year now...
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 2 months ago '06        #14
Kingme 
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 Wawdy24 said
He got emotional watching Xbox players have fun playing a game that the Sony Defense Force sh*t on for over a year now...
That's crazy because people like that can play Halo Infinite on their iphone, tablet, laptop, android, fire stick etc. using a PS5 or 4 controller when it drops. I don't know anyone who played the game and didn't enjoy it.
+3   

 2 months ago '17        #15
Naga Sadow  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x20
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J was going ham at first then they brought out the real bots and I was getting mopped yesterday. Game is still tight as hell.
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 2 months ago '16        #16
Novii  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x1
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 Kingme said
If you legit played Halo back in the day, do yourself a favor and play Infinite for free when it drops. It's fun bro, you think about it when you're not playing it.
When I move into my new spot i may get the odd opportunity here and there. I gotta get a new rig anyways. I have a few pc gamer and Xbox dudes I’m boys with.

 Wawdy24 said
He got emotional watching Xbox players have fun playing a game that the Sony Defense Force sh*t on for over a year now...
So because I don’t share your opinion I’m emotional? Xbox gamers and a whole halo sub Reddit sh*t on infinite for a year and are partly responsible for the revisions giving you the game you see today. You should be grateful for the criticism, since you’d have a terrible version that would have released a year ago.

Go to the halo sub Reddit’s and you’ll see pro halo players sh*tting on what 343 did to Halo their beloved franchise. Are they Sony defense force??
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 2 months ago '12        #17
Faythung  OP
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 Novii said
Is that not something they’re showing off currently to sell the product?
There’s a lot more features but I posted what interested me.

I notice you quoted the question without answering it. What is Halo Infinite doing different in an over saturated market in 2021?

I don’t post opinions for people to agree with me I post em to start conversations. I don’t hate any of you dudes, I’m here to talk gaming and some of you just here to slap

Edit: what? I can be a fan of the original but it’s a problem if I’m not a fan of the newest addition?
Halo is an arena shooter and isn't remotely comparable to BF2042.

That'd be like comparing CoD BR to Counter Strike.


Last edited by Faythung; 08-02-2021 at 01:25 PM..
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 2 months ago '04        #18
Wawdy24 
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 Novii said
So because I don’t share your opinion I’m emotional? Xbox gamers and a whole halo sub Reddit sh*t on infinite for a year and are partly responsible for the revisions giving you the game you see today. You should be grateful for the criticism, since you’d have a terrible version that would have released a year ago.

Go to the halo sub Reddit’s and you’ll see pro halo players sh*tting on what 343 did to Halo their beloved franchise. Are they Sony defense force??
No, the fact you went out of your way "watching videos of people play" and came to a conclusion shows your emotional state.

I could see if you actually played the Test Run and had concerns... but you literally watched people play it and formed your conclusion.

Then you bring up all these other shooters to try and justify your point by actually stating people aren't going to leave Fortnite, CoD, or Battlefield for this...

I mean, that's your opinion... but you have not even played Halo Infinite to base your heavy opinion on... that's what I am saying
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 2 months ago '20        #19
one2remember3 
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How did you get into this to play? Pre-order?

 2 months ago '16        #20
Novii  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x1
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 Faythung said
Halo is an arena shooter and isn't remotely comparable to BF2042.

That'd be like comparing CoD BR to Counter Strike.
There’s a disconnect and maybe it’s how I explained it.

Call of duty Cold War is an extremely popular game, and it’s an arena shooter. Warzone is an extension of the game that just so happens to be a battle royale. The reason I brought those battle royales up was because of the fact it’s the “freshest” idea in an over saturated market, and it’s what most gamers play despite the console of choice. If you check gaming news there’s a new shooter every few months.

My argument is the franchise has gone stale and there’s little to no new innovation that would substantiate the narrative of “Halo is back”. Same game, VERY minor upgrades. If I’m wrong please break it down for me how. I never once said the game wouldn’t be fun. So if they reskinned this game 20 years from now just smoother frames and updated textures will you have the same response?
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 2 months ago '12        #21
halochicken  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x1
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 Novii said
I legit watched this game on many diff YouTube channels live. From gamespot to ign to randalThor, colt etc. And I don’t get the hype narrative at all.

If you played the tech test, ask yourself what Halo does different or better than any other shooter available right now? Bf2042 got hang gliders and tornadoes and 100+ people per map etc. What’s Halo doing?

Game doesn’t move the needle in any meaningful way like the original did, and it seems that people are just happy it’s in a better place than the reveal last year despite all the FUD around it. That doesn’t make it ACTUALLY good. It makes it good by contrast.

I played and enjoyed halo with my boys back in the day too. But the shooter market is over saturated right now for a game that looks decent to be paraded off as “amazing”. The Xbox community is OD as usual with the superlatives.
“Stunning” “breathtaking” “amazing”

Obviously the game is going to do numbers. It’s free, and going to be marketed like crazy because it’s a well known franchise. But is it going to pull gamers away from Fortnite? Apex? Warzone? PubG? Over watch? BF 2042??
This is the battle royale era. We went from squad vs another squad or lobby. To squads vs a lobby of other squads. Halo looking dated af out here

Game looked mid. Not terrible, not amazing. Just another shooter from Halo. It also isn’t anymore visually impressive than Destiny 2 either. Is a grappling hook supposed to make everyone drop what they doing?

But slap away.


It's interesting when people type a full blown chapter to sound educated on the subject but you don't get it.

not all shooters are the same and appeal to the same crowd.

fortnite is an 3rd person battl royale-- appeal to battle royale players
Apex is a first person battle royale-- appeal to battle royale players
warzone is a battle royal-- appeal to battle royale players
pubg is a battle royal-- appeals to battle roayale players
overwatch team based/objective shooter-- appeals to team fortress players,valorant players
battlefield (large scale combat)

HALO--- ARENA SHOOTER appeals to people who play arena shooters:doom,quake,unreal tournament,half-life 2 death match


clearly from what you decided to list you seem to come from battle royales mainly condsidering you listed like 4 of them back to back.
overwatch stole its whole flow from team fortress 2 where it got its inspiration from it didn't actually bring anything to the table but be modern.

(It also isn’t anymore visually impressive than Destiny 2)every shooter you listed isn't more visually impressive than destiny 2 but battlefield and thats not even out yet. destiny 2 isn't a competive driven game and neither is battlefield.
competitive driven games favor stable frame rates and higher frame rates over visual's all the time ie: counter strike,quake,doom,unreal tournament,tf2,overwatch to list some


maybe just fu*king maybe you don't understand the hype because you really never was too big of a fan of arena shooters.Maybe thats just not your thing when it comes to shooters. Could be the reason in your beutiful list of shooter you didn't name or compare or give props to one arena shooter style game in your report.


just because its a shooter doesn't mean it translates 1:1 of you liking it lol. there are sub genres that define the shooter more. there are tons of cod players that hate warzone because it is a battle royale and its all the same guns/model/hitboxes etc etc its all the same except the format of the match.

halo still holds weekly tournaments that fill up, that are streamed , as well as quake, and doom. not everyone wants eyecandy like you some people just love the competitiveness of arena shooters, and core gameplay just for example league of legends starcraft dota valorant overwatch,all games that don't even have a drop in a bucket when it comes to visuals but capture the core gamplay perfectly.


Last edited by halochicken; 08-02-2021 at 02:29 PM..
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 2 months ago '12        #22
halochicken  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x1
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 Novii said
There’s a disconnect and maybe it’s how I explained it.

Call of duty Cold War is an extremely popular game, and it’s an arena shooter. Warzone is an extension of the game that just so happens to be a battle royale. The reason I brought those battle royales up was because of the fact it’s the “freshest” idea in an over saturated market, and it’s what most gamers play despite the console of choice. If you check gaming news there’s a new shooter every few months.

My argument is the franchise has gone stale and there’s little to no new innovation that would substantiate the narrative of “Halo is back”. Same game, VERY minor upgrades. If I’m wrong please break it down for me how. I never once said the game wouldn’t be fun. So if they reskinned this game 20 years from now just smoother frames and updated textures will you have the same response?
hate to burst your bubble at freshest idea but you are just clueless after the release of fortnite
battle royales are the oversaturated market and arena shooters are very far in between lol

also cod is not an arena shooter- call of duty is similar but not it.call of duty is proggression based and you use loadouts.arena shooter all players start with the same loadout and f*ght for map control where weapons would pop up on map.


Last edited by halochicken; 08-02-2021 at 01:53 PM..

 2 months ago '11        #23
Blokka Blokka  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x7
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 Lazy said
I’m not a post Halo 3 fan but the preview MP was actually pretty good

The movement mechanics in particular remind me of UT99

If getting it right is why they delayed this game so much they made the right call
No need explaining sh*t to that idiot.

You're better off blocking that police officer

Though I doubt he's even that, just another mentally ill dumbass like his cheerleader friend


 2 months ago '16        #24
Novii  topics gone triple plat - Number 1 spot x1
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 Wawdy24 said
No, the fact you went out of your way "watching videos of people play" and came to a conclusion shows your emotional state.

I could see if you actually played the Test Run and had concerns... but you literally watched people play it and formed your conclusion.

Then you bring up all these other shooters to try and justify your point by actually stating people aren't going to leave Fortnite, CoD, or Battlefield for this...

I mean, that's your opinion... but you have not even played Halo Infinite to base your heavy opinion on... that's what I am saying
Are you familiar with algorithms? YouTube recommendations? How is it going out of my way to boot up YouTube and watch new footage of an upcoming game. I watched videos of the ascent the same way. Did I go “out of my way” to watch that too?

I don’t need to test a game or play a game to have an opinion on it. You guys should know that the best since you all had something to say about Returnal and every other Sony exclusive y’all will never and have never played.

But see you guys aren’t arguing the point you’re arguing how you feel about the point. There’s a difference. And who is actually emotional becomes painstakingly obvious. I never said the game was terrible. I said it was average. Outdated. Those “others” I brought up currently lead the shooting genre. I’m wrong for comparing one shooter to another?

Anyways, what I say doesn’t stop you from enjoying the game. I asked legitimate questions to the halo fans if they’re happy about this game despite it bringing literally nothing new to the table aside from what? Transporting a flag in capture the flag in a vehicle? First thing I said was I don’t get the hype. If you want to explain it feel free, but if y’all wanna get into the name calling y’all can feel free with that too. I’m with whatever
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 2 months ago '12        #25
Faythung  OP
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 Novii said
There’s a disconnect and maybe it’s how I explained it.

Call of duty Cold War is an extremely popular game, and it’s an arena shooter. Warzone is an extension of the game that just so happens to be a battle royale. The reason I brought those battle royales up was because of the fact it’s the “freshest” idea in an over saturated market, and it’s what most gamers play despite the console of choice. If you check gaming news there’s a new shooter every few months.

My argument is the franchise has gone stale and there’s little to no new innovation that would substantiate the narrative of “Halo is back”. Same game, VERY minor upgrades. If I’m wrong please break it down for me how. I never once said the game wouldn’t be fun. So if they reskinned this game 20 years from now just smoother frames and updated textures will you have the same response?
Agree with pretty much everything @ said.

I have no interest in them reinventing the wheel, what I want is more Halo. It will never do numbers like Fortnite or CoD because those games are designed to appeal to the mass market, they aren't proper competitive shooters, they're casual games. Halo is a proper competitive shooter. It is easily one of the two most competitive shooters on console along with RB6. I'm very happy they aren't greatly swayed by the popularity of bigger games that are essentially in different genres.
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