343 Industry has been given an enormous job, giving us the next Halo game with Master Chief. They Succeeded
This is the best Halo story to date in my opinion. The cutscenes look amazing and the voice acting spectacular. You feel like you're watching a TV series. There is a lot more narrative in this game than the past but it all works and makes sense. The main plot revolves around John 117 and Cortana 4 years after the end of Halo 3. The AI. Cortana is 8 years old, and AI go crazy after 7, so she plays a main part in this story. Also a new race of aliens are present, the Prometheans, who are types of Forunners. You are inside a Forunner planet and are trying to escape, but must also kill an ancient evil that you must destroy first. This may sound like a lot but the story is easier to follow and characters are more personal than ever, but since it is a trilogy the ending leaves you wondering. That by no means makes it bad though, it is very rewarding for Halo fans. On normal mode, I made it through in 4hrs 44min, (which I thought was awesome because it was all 4's!!), so for the real challenge play the game on Heroic or Legendary where you really get to see how varied each enemies attack patterns are. AI in this game are great, you hardly ever have problems with some guy not running over to the objective stopping you from moving on.
Instead of Firefight, which was made popular in ODST, is gone, being replaced by a thing called Spartan Ops. These are a mini series, like a second campaign done in multiple episodes like TV shows. Each week a new episode will come out, which includes a fully animated and voiced cutscenes and 5 missions to play. All play like a firefight game, large number of enemies coming in waves but with campaign objectives. These are a tad short, but the cutscenes are great and I can't wait to get the next part of the story. And who doesn't want to kill more enemies?
Matchmaking is now called Wargames, since games are now supposed to be training matches on the ship the Infinity. Some game types have new names, along with a new version of Infection called Floor, but there aren't enough maps on disc. You quickly see the same ones over and over and instantly wish it had as many as Halo 3 did. Map packs are promised and there is a season pass where you pay one price now and get the maps right when they come out. It's cheaper than other similar deals, so it's worth getting. There are now loadouts, yeah like Call of Duty, but this is anything but that. Games are faster paced, now that you can run all the time instead of only with armor ability. Loadouts means a lot more to unlock, including a large amount of armor and symbols. It makes for an addicting experience. This game definitely feels like halo and even with sprinting it doesn't feel like any other shooter. The maps they did include are perfectly made, though, like Chris said in the Gamespot review, none standout to you like Guardian or Sandtrap from Halo 3 do.
This game has hours and hours of content in it, and it still includes the great custom games, powerful forge mode, and theater mode to waste your night away with. Halo is a game that will keep your attention for a long time, as it isn't just a shooter, but anything you can make it in the forge mode. It is such a large franchise now that there is so much content out there for you to have a great time with. Halo is one of the, if not the, Best game of the year and and must have for every fan and Xbox owner.