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About the Product
- Master Chief can now wield two weapons at once, board Covenant vehicles and steal Covenant weapons like the incredible double energy sword
- Lead an all-new unit of super-soldiers, the ODST -- tougher, badder and deadlier versions of your old comrades
- New enemies, allies and surprises around every corner - intense combat action with enhanced AI and real-time lighting
- Immense single-player action with maassive landscapes and huge cities to explore and defend - destructible and interactive environments
- Take the action online with your Xbox Live and switch sides, to become a Covenant Elite!
- Works with an Xbox 360 console
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Halo 2 opens with a cut scene in the Covenant Holy City of High Charity. Much has happened since Master Chief (that's you) created so much havoc for the Covenant in the first Halo, and the Arbiter has much atoning to do for his failures. This first cut scene is long, but the lush graphics, orchestral sound, and polished voice talent for both this and other cut scenes as well as the game itself put most animated television shows to shame.
Much has happened since Master Chief created so much havoc for the Covenant in the first Halo, and the Arbiter has much atoning to do.
In the end, though, Halo 2 is unabashedly a first-person shooter. It has a Mature rating and is not meant for kids. Gameplay is constant and intense. No sooner is one bunch of aliens taken care of than another descends. The controls are identical to the first game so those familiar with it will be up and blasting in no time. And the sound and graphics have been beefed up so that Halo 2 is undoubtedly one of the most beautiful console games available.
Most of the weapons from the first game return, although strangely the MA5B Assault Rifle (the default weapon in the first game) is not available. There is a single melee weapon known as the Covenant Sword, but the controls for it are the same as that for all the shooter weapons, making it difficult to direct. Also, for a new twist, you can hold two of the smaller guns at the same time and shoot double-fisted.
As for vehicles, the old favorites are back and joined by a few new, mostly Covenant wheeled monsters. Some improvements have been made to the AI so that the nonplayer characters can drive without running into too many obstacles while you man the turret. This improved AI also has enemies ducking for cover, and the banter from both the Marines and the bad guys has undergone massive improvements so that it no longer sounds quite so repetitive.
On Your Own
The most significant change in the single-player game is with Master Chief's much-touted defensive suit. At the beginning of the game, he is told that the suit has been upgraded, but it's really undergone a severe downgrade. In Halo 2, the player has only one lifeline. Unlike in the first game, there is basically no defensive shield on the suit, making gameplay tougher. It can often take multiple--sometimes a maddening number--attempts to make it through thorny parts of the game.
Or with a Friend
Finally, no review of a Halo game is complete without mentioning multiplayer. One of the main reasons to buy Halo 2 is the ability to play through Xbox Live, a feature not included in the first game, which was among the original releases for the Xbox. Multiplayer for Halo 2 uses all of the same weapons and vehicles as in the single-player game, and the types of games available in Halo (King of the Hill, Slayer, Capture the Flag) return with a host of new maps. Multiplayer Halo 2 offers customizable profiles, control layout, and screens as well as a voice proximity feature, where you can talk with other players via an Xbox Communicator so that those closer to you sound louder than those farther away. Players can also create both permanent clans and temporary parties in the Xbox Live world. Undoubtedly, this multiplayer feature alone ensures that Halo 2 will remain a top-selling game for years to come. --David Morel
- Lush graphics and orchestral sound
- Constant, thumping shoot-'em-up action
- Multiplayer available through Xbox live
- Suit downgrade makes single-player often overly difficult
- Get ready for some bleary-eyed mornings
Top Customer Reviews
Halo 2 is essentially its predecessor, except better. I know that sounds unlikely, but the few things that I didn't like about the original game such as bad Marine AI and monotonous maps are gone in this version.
For example, I was playing last night, and I was on the second level where you and a team of Marines are going through an African city killing everything. A Marine in front of me gets killed as soon as he rounds a corner. Instead of charging ahead, the rest of the squad hugs the wall. So, I swap my sniper rifle for Sarge's auto rifle (another kickass feature, you can swap guns with marines). Since the Marines are better shots, Sarge charges ahead and takes out the Covenant sniper. The marines and I then charge ahead and waste the covenant.
Here is a summary of cons and pros about the game.
PROS: Marines are much, much more intelligent.
You can swap guns with marines.
marines can drive vehicles on their own now.
the flood return
AH TOO MANY TO LIST CANT LIST THEM ALL
Cons: The only bad things I noticed so far were some minor graphial glitches, such as guns and vehicles sticking through walls. Also, every time it loads a charecter in a cutscene, a milisecond later the game seems to "draw" the person. It is kind of wierd looking, but in no way hurts the game.
If you are into a good sci-fi story or lots of action get this game. Also, Halo 1 fans wont be dissapointed, all changes were for the better.
First off, this is obviously the sequel to the hugely popular initial Halo game. You are Master Chief, a space marine who is sent out to battle the enemies. You are fighting the Covenant, who are your main foes, but you also run into the Flood, who are a space parasite that wants to eat all life. In addition, there are mechanical creatures on Halo who want to kill pretty much anything including the Flood. So each location and creature type has its own look, feel, attitudes and reactions.
The graphics are simply gorgeous, from the rippling water to the clouds in the sky and reflections off of surfaces. I love taking screenshots of this game. The music is also extremely well done, in that the quality is always very high. But it's a little bizarre to be going from new age lilting softness in one heated battle to high intensity rock music in another and so on. It doesn't necessary track to the location you're in, either. It's just whatever the designers felt like putting in.
The gameplay and plot is where this game really shines. Your characters that interact with you are simply BRILLIANT in how they each do what a real live creature would do. Grunts are my favorite - these little Covenant front-liners are brave and talkative when they're in groups, but when you whittle them down they suddenly turn and flee, shrieking at the top of their lungs. Your teammates leap into vehicles with you, either driving or shooting depending on your preference. They'll come alongside you to give you support, and duck for cover when appropriate.
The quips the characters come out with mid-battle still make me laugh out loud.Read more ›
GRAPHICS: The Graphics have greatly improved since the original Halo. The bump-mapping has done a great deal for the game. Throw a plasma grenade on the ground and watch the lighting effects.
SOUND: I love the sound in this game, great music, and great sound effects. My only complaint is that the warthog sounds less "scary" and the smgs sound more like fully-auto cap guns instead of real guns. but other than that the sound is great.
GAMEPLAY: FUN! I love the new addition of dual weilding. I also like the way that you can board and enemy vehicle. These are just a couple of the many things that have greatly added to the already fun gameplay of HALO.
STORY (no spoilers): Good story. There have been many complaints about the ending...but I thought the story was very immersive. I loved it. Although the ending was SLIGHTLY dissapointing.
MULTIPLAYER: In Halo this was one of the main attractions. In Halo 2 multiplayer could have made a game. Its incredibly fun and addicting. Now with the new addition of LIVE you can play with new or old friends while on completely different continents. Multiplayer is what helped make this game what it is...a great game.
VALUE: Definatly a game that will keep you occupied for years.
OVERALL: Halo 2 leaves me completely breathless...well, it leaves me with enough breath to say "DAMN!"
Now, my main problem with the game, don't worry no spoiling here, is the end of the campaign mode. Put simply, it pre-empts Halo 3, and it better come out soon!. Yet, ignoring that the game is great fun, because, well it's a Halo game.
Most Recent Customer Reviews
Very Fun Game, Action Packed, Made By Bungie, as the artist was not provided.Published 11 days ago by Kevin smith
This game was the beginning of the battle on earth and felt that I was actually fighting in New MombasaPublished 28 days ago by Amazon Customer
Before Halo remastered came out, I bought Halo 2 so I can reminisce on the old days when Halo was good, and the game was not scratched or anything. I'd buy from this seller again.Published 29 days ago by Katie Lynn
As a gamer who grew up with Halo 3, I was thrilled to finally snatch this game and see what it was all about.
...and yes it is as great as everyone says!