Game - Halo 3: ODST
Platforms - XBOX 360
Genre - Sci-Fi | First-Person Shooter
Release Date - September 22, 2009
After the success of Bungie's Halo 3, they are back in an all new amazing campaign. But this time, it's before the events of Halo 3. Halo 3: ODST is set in New Mombasa, where "ODST" follows elite squads which are the "Orbital Drop Shock Troopers" during the Covenant's invasion on Earth on October 23rd, 2552. They're are 5 of these "ODST" marines that were separated from each other when an incident occurred on the Mombasa Slip space. Your mission is to relocate back to your squad mates. But this time, you will be playing as different ODST marines, not just one.
Halo 3: ODST originally was set to be the expansion to it's big brother Halo 3. People assumed that this game would last around a few hours just so that they can prepare for Halo: Reach which will be arriving late 2010. But bungie took the ODST project to a whole new step. With a new campaign, a new awesome mode named "Firefight" a repacked Multi-player with the exact same maps from Halo 3 and an additional 3 new maps, Halo 3: ODST is a full package with complete success.
Back to the story. After the ODST marines have been separated from their incident, you start off with many different perspectives. But you will start with "Rookie". Rookie, as they say, is the newcomer to the ODST marines. He doesn't talk, but he is quite the fighter. He regains his consciousness 6 hours after the crash. The setting is dark, and mostly quiet. But the covenant is still on a lookout for any stragglers, and your one of these stragglers. The city is wide open, go freely as you want. But in order to survive, your going to have to find your teammates sooner of later. But the good thing about the loneliness about this game is that...you aren't totally lonely. You have special support from the "Superintendant", an AI construct that runs the city. This superintendant will guide you throughout the game. The superintendant will provide you with health packs, information, and key tips. Can anyone say, Cortana?
Although it is set in a dark city, you a special ODST visor located inside your helmet. This is the new, neat feature of this game. This ODST visor isn't just for the light, it also helps you find your enemies. The enemies will be outlined in a dark red color, while the teammates will be in a green color. It will also help you locate weapons, and key items, throughout the game. Which brings me to my next point.
How I said "key items", these key items are remnants...signs of your missing ODST teammates. When you locate a remnant, it will flashback to the moments of the crash. But this time, from a differnt ODST's perspective. The next city is set in a cold, winter environment. Guess you don't need that visor anymore, eh?
There's a big difference I notice in ODST's lightning. Between day and night, the vibrance and saturation in the sky is tremendous. During the day, the game looks fabulous in my opinion. But the detail and artistic efforts put into this game make this game the best looking Halo game yet. Previous halos, you will be stucked with the typical orange, purple, greyish tone. But here, in ODST, the colors are far, far bigger in variety. The environments are literally, brought to life! I can honestly say, that graphics DO look different then Halo 3's were.
Just like in previous halos, you will have a special, futuristic armor. But again, this time, your armor defenses will be limited. Falling from heights and feeling pain will be a reality, and noticing the red health effect around your screen alot more is the real deal. This is what makes the game more challenging.
The campaign will provide you a good 6 hour long campaign. But don't feel too bad about the loneliness you'll find in this game. With the Co-Op Campaign, that feeling of loneliness will be long gone. I recommend that you don't complete ALL of the campaign on Co-Op. I don't know anyone that does, but I don't recommend it for a game like this, too. Of course, like I said, campaign is very, very fun, very wide open for free-roaming action and the "mystery" feeling during the night scheme is great. But the game just doesn't end there.
Firefight. The new definition of "awesome" as said by IGN. This new mode in Halo 3: ODST will suck your time in for....a long, long time. Basically like the "Horde" mode in Gears of War 2, you will be fighting endless amounts of enemies, just like the ones you've seen in the campaign. By each wave you pass, the more harder it gets. Do any of you guys remember the skulls from Halo 3? Well, there back. But used more efficent. Like I said how it gets more "harder", the same skulls will be added to ODST's firefight to make this mode truly more competitive and challenging. Which should be really, really fun. Especially playing with friends. Which brings me to my next point.
For split-screen firefight, there will be a max of 2 players for a firefight game. But with Xbox Live friends, it can reach up to 4 players of awesome awesomeness. The action is just non-stop, and survival is the key to this mode. Like Call of Duty's Nazi Zombies, and Gears of War 2's Horde, firefight will be even MORE addicting. It is very important that cooperation is put into effect in firefight.
Some maps in ODST's firefight are wide open, and you can be easily separated from your friends. So always stay in distance. And this is just another thing to be aware of in firefight. What makes cooperation awesome in this game is that, when you run out of bullets, and you see a Brute Chieftain charging right your way, it's up to your friends to help you.
If firefight is not your thing, move on to Disc 2 of ODST. Where you will find that the same Halo 3 Online Multi-player is put back to fit on ODST. With ALL of the previous Halo 3 maps added to ODST, and 3 new map additions to the game, the online will last newcomers, hardcore halo fans, shooter fans playing for a long, long time.
What I didn't like about firefight, or the online in ODST is that firefight is left without matchmaking. I find this disappointing because matchmaking on firefight will make it much easier for people who want to play with random strangers. And see how it will end up. I thought it would be pretty neat. I think alot of us want this too, and not all of us Xbox Live members have friends to play with to make the experience of ODST Multi-player the best.
What I didn't like about online is that it isn't all that new. When I play it, it feels as if it is the same exact thing I've played since 2 years ago. But that doesn't stop it from making ODST's Multi-player amazing.
With that said, Halo 3: ODST is just another amazing game added to the Halo library. With a great new 6-hour campaign, an awesome new mode called Firefight, and a repacked Multi-player with 3 new additional maps, ODST is a great own for a 360 owner. If your into shooters, a hardcore halo fan, or just a newcomer, this game is for you.
The Good -
- Firefight is the definition of awesome
- The 3 new additional maps added to ODST are great
- Graphics are up to par with other X360 games
- Music is perfect, flawless, just amazing
- More then just an expansion
The Bad -
- Matchmaking should have been added to Firefight
- Online isn't anything rather new, with only 3 new maps, I don't think it deserves it's own disc
9/10 Presentation - The story is very deep, and bungie has put in alot of effort into it to make this game great
9/10 Gameplay - Similar to Halo 3, but just that same awesome level, the fun in Halo 3: ODST is fantastic
9/10 Graphics - Although the Halo look is starting to shows its age, bungie did their absolute best to make this game look like the best looking Halo game yet
10/10 Sound - Amazing. Awesome. Magnificant. Fantastic. Words cannot express the awesome of the music in Halo 3: ODST
9.5/10 Lasting Appeal - Firefight will leave you playing for months, along with the Multi-player.