Halo 4 on Xbox 360 This work is considered exceptional by our editorial staff.

April 24, 2013
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I have to admit – I was doubtful that 343 could pull it off. I assumed it would either be too familiar or distant. But I knew my suspicions were wrong when I finished the first mission in the wrecked spaceship Forward Onto Dawn.

I have bought every Halo game from Halo: CE to Halo Reach, so I know my Halo, and let me tell you: Halo 4 is the best I’ve ever played.

Multiplayer was superb, but today I will review and rate the campaign.

The campaign starts with a cutscene. Big deal, right? Every game starts with one.

Now look at the picture to the right. Tell me what that is? No, that isn’t a poster. That is a picture straight from a cutscene.

It truly looks like a shot from a movie, and for a good reason too. It is CG made, but still, look at the quality. The scary thing is that the game time graphics aren’t much worse.

Can you imagine Halo 5 with Xbox 720?

The grunts are no longer the cute little aliens who ran at the sight of trouble. Well, they still scatter away, but they look almost terrifying. They are as tall as most humans, so imagine if you or me stood in front of it. I’d think we would have our butts chased by those plasma pistol wielding sucker.

How did this transformation happened? The graphics made them almost lifelike. Jackals have hair on their heads now and the elites… well, they are horrific. If I saw one in real life, I am sure I’d die from pure terror.

The graphics are often overlooked in great games and overrated in games that have a good look, but no quality game play. In my rating, they are a huge part of it.

Back to the campaign, one thing you probably heard was that the campaign was short. It is the truth. It didn’t take me long to finish it. A lot of people were upset. Here is the thing though: It just impressed me more.

They put more emotion in that game then Halo 2 and Halo 3 combined. It’s not even close. I often call Halo Reach a work of art. This was also a work of art. They compressed a lot in a small campaign. I’d take shorter Halo 4 campaign then a longer Halo 3 campaign. There was no confusion. Just awesome gameplay and bone-chilling moments.

And speaking of bone-chilling moments, how about some amazing dialogue by Master Chief. Yes I said the Master Chief. He showed some real emotions. Kudos to 343 for giving him a face. The robot thing was going a bit boring.

A huge part of the plot is Cortana, who is slowly becoming rampant due to AI problems, and Master Chief as one tries to remain calm and collected as the other one panics. Wonder if you can guess which one of those descriptions is who.

Without spoiling anything, let’s just say Master Chief has problems finding his own humanity.

My problem is that the amount of ammo is scarce and I often found myself searching for new weapons and ammo a good portion of time. I almost think that this is a way to keep the campaign longer. This hurts the game quite a bit.

Regardless, the campaign runs smoothly, like a featured film, and doesn’t miss a beat. It has the classic Halo feel as well as new exciting things. I am fairly sure 343 will do a great job with the Reclaimer series that Halo 4 takes place in.

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