Ahh yes “believe”… the new $10 million dollar marketing slogan for Halo 2.5 stolen shamelessly from a video game message board. They want us to believe Halo 2.5 has a good single player story, they want us to believe that the multiplayer doesn’t pale in comparison to even the most generic of PC shooters, they want us to believe the graphics look like Halo 2 in HD because of ‘the scope’ and they want us to believe the much hyped ‘Forge’ is a sufficient replacement for a map editor.
Here is what you should believe:
What Halo 2 started with mediocrity, Halo 2.5 finishes. The story is a mess, full of plot holes and feels extremely cheesy. Even the game’s laggy 4 player co-op doesn’t help keep the single player campaign from being mediocre at best. All I can say is thank god the single player portion is very short as I’m not sure how much more sloppy writing I could endure.
Halo 2.5′s multiplayer is a letdown as well. It’s Halo 2 with a pseudo map editor. No dedicated servers, still pay to play online and only 16 players per match. Bungie should look at Resistance and Warhawk, both of which have dedicated servers, 40 players online, free to play online and are PS3 exclusive, to see how a multiplayer experience should be.
In conclusion, what was supposed to be the game of the year is looking to be yet another dud on the 360 in the same vein as Perfect Dark Zero, perhaps a bit worse. I would wait for a price drop or even avoid this title altogether. If you are looking to satisfy your FPS lust look no further than Haze and Unreal Tournament 3. With Haze’s superior 4 player co-op and UT3′s free online multiplayer and thousands of maps (thanks to Blu-ray and a real map editor) you can’t go wrong on PS3 for your online shooter fix.
SDF Score: 2.5/10