If you haven’t gotten sick of us pointing out that Halo: Reach releases next week, then congratulations, you’re a trooper. As one of the bigger launches of the year, it’s kind of a hard thing to ignore, like King Kong taking a poop on your car. Not that any of us have experienced this, but you get the idea.
For me, there’s nothing quite like the anticipation that builds for a new release that you can’t wait to play. While I’m not the biggest Halo guy out there, I tend to get extremely excited about each new entry’s launch date. Perhaps it’s for nostalgia, and remembering the awesome nights I had for Halo 2 and 3, I don’t know. I seriously can’t wait for the launch of Halo: Reach, and I’m even taking September 14th off from work to play it all day with my brother.
I got just as excited this year when Mass Effect 2 came out, and I remember how antsy I got at work with it sitting on my desk (I picked it up during lunch). The only other release I can really remember getting this jazzed about was Gears of War 2, when I picked it up at midnight to play co-op with my buddy til the early hours of the morning.
So what about you guys? What games have you been most excited to have released in the past? Do you have any launch day ceremonies? What’s the next game coming out that you feel this way about? Go!
I think I’ve mentioned this little factoid on here before, but I am kind of a spoiler hound. There are very few occasions where I manage to keep myself totally in the dark about a story for any book, movie or game. Case in point, I was playing through the new Mass Effect 2 DLC last night, Lair of the Shadow Broker, and I looked up the end of the level while I was playing it. If that isn’t crazy behavior, I don’t know what is. Just to make the wait for Halo: Reach even more unbareable, Bungie has seen fit to release a walkthrough of one of the campaign’s levels called Tip of the Spear, complete with commentary straight from the developers. I’m going to try and avoid watching this, but if you’re so inclined, I’ve embedded the video below:
If you did watch the video, what did you think? Pretty interesting, or are you trying to keep yourself squeaky clean for the next six days?
Well, we’ve finally reached (get it?) September, the month where Bungie will bid adieu to the Halo franchise with the highly anticipated, even by me, Halo: Reach. In honor of this momentous and bittersweet occasion, I thought I would ask you guys which game in the Halo series stands out to you as the best.
I never played Halo: Combat Evolved until 2007, when I finally bought a used Xbox for fifty bucks from a friend. Even years after its release, it was still a blast to play and all the whining about the Library level was way overblown. The backtracking did suck, though. Honestly, I think that one is still my favorite to this day, although I haven’t played ODST yet, but a certain Canadian speaks very highly of it. And the less said about Halo 2′s ending, or lack thereof, the better.
So what do you guys think? What game is your favorite and why? Is there a particular one that you don’t think stands up the high quality of the others? Let your opinions Flood (ha ha) over this post…now!
As we’re probably all aware, being fans of video game culture and what not, PAX Prime 2010 is set to kick off this Friday down in beautiful Seattle, Washington. Since I live about four hours and one country away from Seattle, I thought I would take this opportunity to finally go to the Penny Arcade Expo, something I’ve been dying to do for a few years now. It’s actually kind of funny that GamerSushi started off with Eddy and Smooth Few Film’s Daniel (who is not Anthony), going to PAX with Leet World DVDs in hand.
Since I’m going to be reporting diligently on all the news and cool stuff coming out of PAX, I thought I’d take this opportunity to ask you, the community, if there’s anything in particular you’d like me to keep an eye out for. Halo: Reach and The Old Republic are a given, but are there any other games you’d like me to try and get hands-on time with? I’m bringing down a camera as well, so I’ll try and upload pictures of the show floor and the various cosplayers. So, do you have any requests? Put them in the comment section below.
It’s a sad fact, but the early theft of video games is becoming more and more common in the industry. Giant games such as Modern Warfare 2 and Halo: Reach are being picked apart and distributed far ahead of their street dates, with spoilers running rampant. For example, Modern Warfare 2′s “No Russian” level was leaked about a month in advance of people getting hold of the game, and many argued that the reveal of such a controversial mission spoiled the plot. Even larger gaming sites got in on the leak, making such videos a front-page deal, drawing even more attention.
So, we have a question for you, the community. When video games break their street date either through piracy or simple error, do you actively go hunting for spoilers? If you’re the sort of person who likes to stay pure, does it irk you to see gaming websites posting videos that give away elements of the game?
Some people are persistent, there’s no doubt about that. Even when games are hidden inside Microsoft’s own fortress of code and priced at over $1250 on Xbox LIVE, pirates still find a way to get what they want. Halo: Reach, which is slated to come out in less than a month, has been grabbed from Microsoft via some skullduggery on their very own servers. The prohibitively expensive version of Reach (statue not included) was intended to be available to reviewers so Microsoft does not have to ship out box copies. Furthermore, even if you manage to scrounge up that many Microsoft Points, you still need a special download code to get it (Microsoft had done something similar with Crackdown 2, which is still not available publicly via LIVE).
While there’s been plenty of debate on this site about piracy and whether it’s good or bad, this is a pretty ballsy move even by Internet standards. Most games are pirated after their release or shortly before, but never from Microsoft’s own website. Spoiler-related threads are springing up all over the Web, so if you’d like to stay pure for September 14, batten down the hatches. Until the Cyber Police get this leak under control, there will be much chaos in the house of Xbox.
What do you guys think about this development? Are you going spoiler hunting or avoiding forums at all costs?
As we get ready for the fall gaming season, we’ve had a few discussions lately about clearing out gaming backlogs. For some, this means renting or borrowing from friends to get through as much as possible. For others like me, it means playing through purchased games and trading them back in to get ready for what’s coming next (Halo: Reach and Civilization V, anyone).
The comment thread from our recent podcast delves into the idea of trading in old games a bit, and it got me thinking about all the games I’ve purchased this generation. Some of the ones off the top of my head include: Gears of War 1 and 2, Halo 3 and ODST, Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare and Modern Warfare 2, Valkyria Chronicles, Uncharted 2, Forza 2, Mass Effect 1 and 2, Left 4 Dead, Fallout 3, Little Big Planet, Viva Pinata, FFXIII, Red Dead Redemption and then some.
Really, there aren’t a heaping ton of them or anything, but it still got me wondering: what games has the rest of GS purchased over the last few years? Leave your lists here, people. Go!
Bungie has a new ViDoc out that highlights the various Spartans of Nobel Team, giving you an insight into the minds of your squad members in Halo: Reach. Although the video isn’t especially long, I have to say that the character animations for Halo: Reach are much improved over the previous titles, and every Spartan in the trailer seems to have a great deal of personality. As a little treat to Halo fans, the trailer is narrated by a character we’ve read a lot about in the books, but have never seen in a game. Watch the following video to get the run down on your teammates:
We’re almost at September, so the Halo: Reach news will be coming fast and furious. We’ll definitely try to sort out the chaff so we’re not flooding the website with Halo posts, but this trailer was too good to pass up as a fan of Halo lore. I know this sort of video won’t turn anyone around who has decided not to get Reach, but what about those who are? Even more excited now?
Psst. You got that itch? That little feeling in your hands, the one where you just ache to throw a plasma grenade at somebody and feel that awesome tingle of joy when it sticks to their body and you watch them run around like they just found out they were adopted before they explode? Yeah, me too.
Sadly, we have another month to go before Halo: Reach hits store shelves, so I can’t do anything about your desire to blow people up or LOCK BLOCK them, but I can give you a small taste of what you will be doing for the next few months. Enjoy and remember…the first hit is always free:
Even though the Reach Beta is far behind us, my mind is still consumed with thoughts of running around Boneyard and Powerhouse, throwing mini-nuke grenades and Lock Blocking some fools. Needless to say, I’m greatly looking forward to the game’s release on September 14, and I’ve even taken a couple days off of work to fully absorb it (that and go to a wedding, but we know which is more important). Bungie recently played host to a variety of media outlets – while snubbing my tear-filled pleas to be invited – and the fruits of those visits are finally hitting the internet. IGN got to take a look at three of the maps being shipped with Reach, and two of them should be familiar to Halo 2 veterans.
It all looks pretty good to me, especially the prospect of flying Falcons in multiplayer. How is it looking to you guys?
One thing that can put a damper on a good night of fun in the online world of gaming would have to be the advent of rage quitting, something that plagues even the most congenial of multiplayer matches. It’s hard to escape, really. As long as there are people playing games, there will be people that grief and people that quit.
And this is something that Bungie hopes to put a stop to. In a recent chat with Xbox360 Achievements, Bungie community director Brian Jarrard had a few things to say about a new system they’re implementing into Halo: Reach to help weed out the rage quitters from the rest of the population. The idea is that these people will be penalized in order to keep the overall experience more enjoyable.
We’ve talked about the idea of when to quit online matches, but I still thought I’d bring this up. What do you guys think of punishing people that habitually quit games? Personally, I’m of two minds about it. On the one hand, I think it does indeed ruin the experience for other people in some ways. But on the other, if I pay 60 bucks for a game, I feel like it’s almost my right to enjoy it how I please, and that doesn’t include letting someone grief me for an entire match or playing a really hated gametype. Obviously, it’s a tricky ground to navigate, but my advice would be to find better ways to penalize griefers before penalizing quitters, but that’s just me.
So what do you guys think about quitting online games? Do you agree with Bungie’s new proposed tactic? Go!
Your resident Halo fanboy is back, this time with the campaign trailer for Bungie Studio’s upcoming Halo swan song, Halo: Reach. You can debate whether this game is actually the most anticipated title of 2010 (please don’t), but there’s no denying that the excitement for Reach is building to a fevered pitch. With Firefight 2.0, Forge World and a swath of player customization options, it looks like Bungie’s last Halo game will be very fine indeed. Check out the trailer below:
Very nice in my opinion, if a little reminiscent of Modern Warfare 2 in some parts. Like all of Bungie’s trailers, this stuff is all in engine, and damn if it doesn’t look sublime. What do you guys think? Any more excited, or are you like me, veritably bursting at the seams with apprehension?
If you listened to the totally sweet new podcast, then you’ll know that we geeked out for awhile about mods and how awesome the gaming community is at creating cool new content for our most beloved games. While this mostly happens on PC, one of the primary examples of this done well on a console is the variety of custom content produced by Halo 3′s avid Forge community. Even years later, they are still pumping out cool new game types that are totally worth playing.
Which is why Bungie has kicked it up a notch for Halo: Reach with the introduction of Forge World. There’s not really a whole lot I can say about this other than implore you to watch. Because seriously, wow… I am so excited about the possibilities that the team at Bungie is creating for this. The fact that they are even shipping some maps built in Forge World to show what all it can do is sure to inspire.
Who else just got even more excited for Halo: Reach because of this video?
Well, you’ve listened to us yap about what we’re playing on the podcast, so it’s time for you all to jump in with it, too.
Fortunately for me, we seem to be in a very brief gaming drought, while we wait for the fall releases to start dropping on us. I suppose this begins in September with Halo: Reach, so that gives me a good couple of months to catch up with some of the games on my backlog. These include Alpha Protocol, 3D Dot Game Heroes, Starcraft II (when it comes out), Dragon Age: Awakening, and even more Red Dead Redemption.
However, in the immediate future I will be playing both Alien Swarm and Alan Wake, two games that are polar opposites in terms of budget, scale and style, but both equally as engaging, I’m sure. While I haven’t officially started Alan Wake just yet, I watched my brother play about a quarter of the game a couple of weekends ago and I was mesmerized. In addition, Alien Swarm has commanded the last couple of nights, and I still can’t get over just how fun this free game is.
While last year’s Halo 3: ODST divided a lot of people with its price point and the short length of the campaign, I think that we can mostly agree that Firefight, the four-person co-op survival mode, was pretty freaking awesome. Players would band together against ever increasing waves of Covenant troops, competing for points but using teamwork to stay alive. Since Firefight was so well received, fans have been hoping and wondering if Firefight was going to make a reappearance in Halo: Reach, Bungie’s final (?) foray into the Halo-verse. Well, wonder no more, Spartans! Firefight is back and better than ever. Check out the trailer:
Just watching that trailer makes me salivate a little bit, because the thought of Firefight with Reach’s refined mechanics is a delicious one indeed. Better yet, the mode will feature matchmaking this time around, which was a point of contention when it was excluded from ODST. What do you guys think? Who here got even more excited for Reach, and who’s had their opinions changed?
Well, we did warn you about the incoming slew of Reach related posts, but I think we can be forgiven for putting up the newest video by Defend the House, the dedicated group behind Halo 3 Mythbusters and Modern Warfare 2 Mythbusters. This time around they’ve turned their sights on the Halo Reach Beta, exposing a few things about the gameplay in the Beta that you might not have known about. Have a watch.
Pretty neat, don’t you think? Did you guys find out anything useful that you can apply to your gameplay? What do you think of the Beta so far? And where are my friend requests?
If there ever was a sign of the coming apocalypse, I’m sure it would be notoriously evil publisher Activison-Blizzard snapping up Bungie Studios, creators of such renowned franchise as Halo, Marathon and Myth. Well, “snapping up” is technically incorrect, as Bungie has entered into a ten-year publishing agreement with Activision but are retaining their autonomy.
This is different from Infinity Ward’s situation, as they were a wholly owned subsidiary, so conspiracy theorists can lay that one to rest. The fact of the matter is that Bungie is an extremely strong studio, whereas Infinity Ward was a struggling start-up when they were taken over by Activision. Besides, Bungie retains control over any Intellectual Properties they develop under this agreement. While pressure from the publisher can lead to complications, chances are Bungie will invest all their man-power into this new game after they finish development of Halo: Reach.
After Bungie parted ways with Microsoft in 2007, they were contractually obligated to ship one more Halo game before pursuing other interests. This is a big coup for Activision, who just recently lost a lot of talented staff from Call of Duty development house Infinity Ward, and may stand to lose a lot more than that.
What do you guys think of this development? Eager to see what Bungie produces after Reach? Are you PS3 owners excited at the prospect of having Bungie develop for your console? Will the average consumer even notice a difference?
I seriously can’t tell you guys how much I’m anxiously awaiting the beta for Halo: Reach, hitting on May 3rd. When that glorious day rolls around, I’ll be a zombie, doing nothing but thinking, eating, and sleeping in a way that is pleasing to the Master Chief. I would consider it no great secret that something about Halo multiplayer hits a special sweet spot for my competitive gaming tastes, and I can’t wait to jump back into it. Honestly, it’s almost like Christmas for me.
Complete fanboy antics aside, an embargo finally lifted on the preview that lots of major gaming sites got to experience with the game. As a result, everybody and their mom that got to play Halo: Reach is finally able to write about it, shedding some light on the details about the game’s multiplayer and how it is going to feel in our nerdy clammy hands.
I think the most interesting write-up I read about the beta would be from Kotaku, who gave a great run down of some of the multiplayer features. The things I’ve read both excite and concern me. Right now, the pros are: class-based weapon and equipment load-outs, fall damage, no dual wielding. Cons: jetpacks for everyone that chooses the loadout and the new armor lock ability, which seems to combine trip mines, EMPs, and bubble shields into one.
Anyway, if you’re even mildly interested in the Reach beta, I’d highly recommend checking out some of the previews of the multiplayer that are dropping all over the net. So, how do you guys feel about Halo: Reach? Excited or meh? Go!
So it seems that everybody’s favorite features here are the ones where we all get to share a little more about our gaming preferences. Personally, I’m a big fan of the discussions that happen in these threads, and it’s one of my favorite parts about writing and participating here- seeing what you dudes think and being able to bounce stuff back and forth.
As such, we’ve come up with a new questionnaire of sorts: More Likely. Here, I ask all of us to put on our best fortune telling caps, and divine the future like some kind of Gamestradamus. We will make our predictions and only time will tell who the real winners are in this game. The way this works is simple: just answer which of these things you think is more likely. Feel free to go into as little or as much detail as to the reasons for your answer.
So without further ceremony, allow me to get the ball rolling…