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Re: You need some perspective.
By:Gravemind
Date: 3/20/13 8:28 pm
In Response To: Re: You need some perspective. (Monochron)

Just about everything you said are things I have already covered in my review of Halo 4, but I will address various specific points you make.

: That doesn't make a better game. Just means more variety. I didn't enjoy many
: of the Reach gametypes. Invasion was only mildly amusing.

Fewer options than its predecessor = a step down in quality. We are incapable of recreating many of the old custom gametypes we used to simply because two-thirds of the gametypes and many of the custom options present in Reach were not carried over. Many of the crazy gametypes and even many ordinary maps we made in Reach would be impossible in Halo 4. Asymmetrical map designed for One-flag CTF? Forget about it. Non-standard Infection variants such as those that allow Zombies to use weapons and/or vehicles (e.g., Knockin' Zombs, Jump Rope, Cat & Mouse)? Nope.

: That doesn't make a better game. Though I enjoy an equal playing field, the
: perks are relatively balanced without one dominating other players.
: You can always play a playlist without them if you want.

Perks belong in COD, not Halo. It's a shameless attempt to play "Follow the Leader." It's messy and convoluted from a balance standpoint. It's hard to have a well-balanced and enjoyable game when you have guys running around in nigh-invulnerable Mantises or power weapons that seemingly never run out of ammo or guys who can spend more time cloaked than uncloaked or guys that know where you are at all times because you were the last guy to kill them. Perks need to go in Halo 5. In fact, I'd go as far to say that it's high time to go back to the classic Golden Tripod. Adding a fourth and now a fifth leg has done little if anything to improve Halo's core gameplay.

: Rewards for good play aren't a bad thing. And as everyone gets them equally
: (albeit random choices) it balances out. Don't squander your ordinance,
: basically.

The old "it all balances out in the big picture" argument doesn't hold. This is supposed to be a balanced, competitive experience, not a gambling sim. Just like how some people may never win the lotto or rarely if ever get anything better than two pairs in poker, some people may go a whole match or even many matches in a row without getting anything better than Needlers and pulse grenades, whereas the guys on the other team get lucky and the game gives them sniper weapons, shotguns, rockets, FRGs, and incinerators out the wazoo. There was one point during a match I played on Ragnarok where the other team ended up getting two beam rifles and a binary rifle for their weapon drops at around the same time, while none of our guys were getting anything good. How is any of that fair? Tyson Green once said "[R]andomness is a poor substitute for tactics and skillful execution," a statement that I believe applies here. The fortunes of a team or a given individual should not be determined by the luck of the draw.

As for map ordnance, to quote my Halo 4 review, it "is normally structured to where you only have set weapon spawns at the beginning of the match ó for example, there will always be a sword and incinerator at the bottom mid of Solace ó but after that, itís largely random. To continue using Solace as an example, the incinerator might never respawn at all, or if it does, it could be at any point in the match in any of several locations. Whereas classic-style weapon spawns promoted cycling around the map and engaging in proper resource & map control so that oneís team can gain access to the best weapons, Halo 4′s map ordnance is about just happening to be at the right place at the right time. That power weapon spawns near you? Then fortune smiles upon thee, as thou hast found the shotgun/binary rifle/whatever. But if it spawns near the enemy? Sucks to be you, I guess. Oh, and map ordnance also has resulted in standard issue weapons not showing up on the map, so any ammo for your regular guns must be scavenged from the bodies of dead allies and enemies. (I must also note that the lack of fixed, timer-based weapon spawns also contributes to the difficulty in calling out locations. Not only are the compass, map callouts, and red X's gone from the HUD, but you canít even say something like 'Near rocket spawn' because there is no regular rocket spawn.)" Fortunately, Certain Affinity made map ordnance have fixed, regular spawns, which gets rid of the random element. 343I should go do the same with all the maps they made.

Making things more random doesnít make things more balanced. It makes things unfair. If victory or defeat can be determined by simple luck of the draw, when youíre fighting not just the other players but also a random number generator, then something is wrong. I donít mind losing because the other guy outshot me or the other team had better map control and teamwork, but I do mind it when I lose because the computer decided to give me a Needler and the other guy a beam rifle, or because it decided to spawn a rocket launcher next to someone on the other team instead of near me or one of my teammates. The ordnance system doesnít add any depth to the gameplay, it doesnít make things more competitive, and it doesnít make things more fun. Itís just a bad idea that had no business being in a Halo game.

Also, the whole "rewards for good play" thing is bullshit too. It's like killstreaks in COD. It's bad enough that the other team is donging on you, but then the game rewards them by letting them summon bombing runs and attack helicopters. How is that fair? It just causes things to snowball even more in the winning team's favor. Granted, in Halo 4 you don't need to fill the ordnance gauge up in one life, and it's possible that the guys who are down in score might get lucky and get good weapons once they start getting their own personal ordnance, but if a team gets an early lead and get some good ordnance drops, and that gives them just that much more of an advantage, and if that team happens to simply outclass the other team anyway (which is quite common because MM has looser Trueskill tolerances, which is nominally supposed to reduce search times but results in unbalanced matches much of the time) that just exacerbates the situation.

: You can always play a playlist without them if you want.

Since I'm not a fan of objectives in Matchmaking, and because that Team Throwback playlist is all Slayer Pro/MLG gametypes with no motion tracker (which I'm blind without), I'm not left with much of a choice now, am I? If there were actual Classic Slayer or Reach-style Slayer playlists, I'd be more inclined to play Halo 4 more often than I do. But the game's MP is so uninspiring in so many ways, I go days and sometimes weeks without playing, which I never did with Reach unless I was literally incapable of playing for whatever reason. I haven't played in a week, and I honestly don't miss it. I even went three whole weeks without playing in December. I have little compulsion to play this broken, random, uninspiring, sad excuse for Halo multiplayer. But if my options are "play something I don't like" and "don't play at all," then why should I continue to support 343I in their endeavors?

: The real thing to blame here is Reach's introduction of Loadouts.
: Rank-based unlocks is a little bad, but again, it isn't going to sway the
: tide of battle after you have played a handful of games. YES, it is bad
: before you unlock the DMR/BR/Boltshot but if you are making your judgement
: call before you have played enough to unlock them, then you have not
: played long enough to make a judgement call.

Any deviation from a level playing field, no matter how slight, is bad design, plain and simple. Reach put everyone on a level playing field regardless of rank. Halo 4 does not. Ergo, Reach was better in this regard. Bungie weren't the ones to deviate from the level playing field, so blaming them is a bit disingenuous if you ask me.

In any case, you will be unlocking things in Halo 4 until you reach SR130, and this represents a huge time sink, literally days worth of gameplay, and it can take weeks or months to reach said rank if you don't play all that much. As I mention in my review, if you only have the time and/or inclination to play only a few hours of Halo 4 a week, you will be at a disadvantage against those players who have sunk more time into the game until such time as you've unlocked everything. Granted, you will have earned enough SP to unlock every weapon, AA, and non-specialization perk by SR50, but even that takes a fair amount of time (my roommate didn't hit SR50 until last month despite having gotten the game at launch).

The question remains: Why should I have to level grind to unlock things that affect gameplay? Why should some other guy be rewarded with more stuff simply because his tenure is longer? If we're going to have custom loadouts, then why not give us everything right off the bat? Why treat our time as a commodity? Some of us have less free time than others and/or choose to spend our free time doing things other than playing Halo. That should not cause such people to be at a disadvantage, no matter how small of a disadvantage that might be.

Leave the Skinner box shit out of Halo and bring back the level playing field.

: Red X's are the only legitimate thing here. Health bar is useful but it isn't
: hard to tell how many times you have been hit.

Knowing how much health you have is need-to-know information. Period. How could the amount of damage you can take once your shields are gone be considered anything other than vital info? Also, the compass that was present in Reach made navigation and communication much easier. In Halo 4, the HUD is one reason among several why communicating with your teammates is a far more problematic endeavor.

: Do you not remember Kat? I vehemently believe that the AI in Reach was
: broken. Halo 4 marines drove me around quite skillfully in vehicles.

Friendly AI has never been good in Halo, ranging from frustratingly terrible at worst to just plain average at best. I'm talking about enemy AI, which was demonstrably better in Reach than it was in any other Halo game.

: What about it? The size? You now have multiple maps with varied environments
: to do your forging in.

While having three unique Forge environments to build in does alleviate the issue of visual monotony, which is something that afflicted Forge World variants, their smaller size and overall layout makes it difficult and sometimes outright impossible to recreate any of the large-scale insanity we were capable of making in Reach, and even makes making some more ordinary maps tough as well. More space = greater freedom to build what you want.

: And consequently less entertaining weapons.
: Much like you say that Reach has more gametypes I could say that 4 has more
: guns. Neither are an absolutle positive or negative, what we should look
: at are which guns make the game more fun. And to me, the variety of 4 does
: this. I barely even see weapon redundancy in Halo 4.

Are you blind? There are many weapons that are only trivially different from each other, much like how the M4A1 and AK-47 in MW3 are only trivially different (slight differences in stats ó ROF, damage, and range ó but fundamentally no different). For example, the Carbine is just a purple DMR that fires green bullets and has slightly different stats, the suppressor is basically a funny-looking AR that fires orange bullets and has slightly different stats, and despite your assertion, the shotgun and scattershot have nearly identical offensive capabilities. Having nearly full parity between the arsenals of all three factions in Halo 4 was a missed opportunity, among other things. The Promethean arsenal at least should have had more to differentiate itself from the others, and even the Covie arsenal had too much similarity to the UNSC's. I addressed this issue a few weeks back in this post as well as in my review, and I mention by ideal Promethean arsenal in this thread.

: That doesn't make a better game. Story retcons are far more heinous than
: visual ones.

Visual retcons are still terrible. I go over this in detail in my review.

: Mjolnir has been changing since Halo 2. You have to expect things like that
: to change for every game.

Not to this extent. Many armors present in Halo 3 that were carried over to Reach looked more or less the same, and they still all looked like Mjolnir, and the Chief's armor was nearly identical in both Halo 2 and 3. Most of the armor in Halo 4 doesn't even look like something from Halo. If you had shown me them with no context and me not knowing a thing about Halo 4, I would not be able to recognize them as Mjolnir.

: Fair enough. The only heinous one was really at the end of the game though. I
: really don't understand that decision.

QTEs are boring, repetitious, and immersion-breaking, but apparently devs like them because they make things more "cinematic" or whatever. Screw that. Save the cinematic stuff for cinema scenes, and don't make me slog through some dull "Press X to Not Die" sequence every time I want to play a level.

: This was a novelty at best. Aside from Invasion I hardly ever played as
: Elites and it only felt like a novelty anyway.

To you it was a novelty. For me, playing as an Elite was a big thing, and I played as one for six years nonstop. It all comes down to reducing options and player choice.

: You play this down too much. Weapon balance is a HUGE part of what makes a
: game fun. It is the thing that gets complained about most as to why
: successive Halos are not as fun as teh previous. Good weapon play is what
: makes multiplayer enjoyable, coupled with good map design.

The improved balance is great, but it cannot overcome all the game's many other serious flaws.

: And to me Halo 4 has much better map design. Haven, Exile, Monolith, Skyline,
: Adrift, Abandon, and even Complex for certain game types are fantastic.
: Again, see MLG/AGL for confirmation.

And to me the maps are dull and uninspiring. See my review for more detail.

: More than this movement (again a big fun factor) is much better and
: entertaining than in Reach. Sprint was long overdue and the jump height an
: movement speed makes for great gameplay and great competitive shootouts.

Again, just because a game has some improvements, that doesn't negate everything that makes it worse than its predecessor.

: Perosnally I also thought that the campaign missions in Reach were far too
: boring, flying around New Alexandria with no overarching goal is still a
: chore. That's teh problem with Reach, it had nothing for you to strive for
: in the campaign. They were almost all short term goals. Nothing kept me
: wanting to play. More vibrant settings (like in Requiem) might have
: helped. The characters in Reach had me squirming at cliche's the whole
: time, while 4 was generally much better about proper development.

And I found Halo 4's Campaign levels to be far too linear and constrained, whereas I felt Reach offered a good amount of freedom in comparison (though Halo 1's levels are still the best in this regard).


Messages In This Thread

3-13-13 BulletinGrimBrother One3/14/13 1:12 am
     BIG news in this one. Red X's. *NM*uberfoop3/14/13 1:15 am
           Holy expletive, the game can be saved. *NM*Joe Duplessie (SNIPE 316)3/14/13 2:15 am
           It's a miracle! *NM*Gravemind3/14/13 3:09 am
           I'm surprised this wasn't around to begin with *NM*TDSpiral3/14/13 4:05 am
           All Hail Bravo! *NM*zoojoo3/14/13 9:17 am
                 Why does Bravo get the thanks? *NM*UnrealCh13f3/14/13 4:00 pm
                       Nah I'm good Unreal *NM*Avateur3/14/13 8:38 pm
                             Re: Nah I'm good UnrealGeneral Vagueness3/15/13 12:14 am
                                   Re: Nah I'm good UnrealAvateur3/15/13 1:32 am
                                         You need some perspective.Louis Wu3/15/13 8:45 am
                                               Re: You need some perspective.Avateur3/15/13 9:52 pm
                                                     Re: You need some perspective.Louis Wu3/16/13 11:31 am
                                                           Re: You need some perspective.Avateur3/16/13 2:38 pm
                                                     Re: You need some perspective.General Vagueness3/16/13 5:49 pm
                                                           Re: You need some perspective.Avateur3/16/13 7:02 pm
                                                                 ^Derailing This^gamerguy20023/16/13 7:51 pm
                                                                       Re: ^Derailing This^General Vagueness3/17/13 1:06 pm
                                                                       Re: ^Derailing This^Cody Miller3/19/13 12:02 pm
                                                                             Re: ^Derailing This^gamerguy20023/20/13 8:38 am
                                                                                   Re: ^Derailing This^Louis Wu3/20/13 9:12 am
                                                                                         Re: ^Derailing This^gamerguy20023/20/13 11:23 am
                                                                                               Re: ^Derailing This^Louis Wu3/20/13 12:01 pm
                                                                                                     Gonna have to agree here.UnrealCh13f3/20/13 2:54 pm
                                                                                                     Re: ^Derailing This^gamerguy20023/20/13 11:00 pm
                                                                                                           Re: ^Derailing This^Louis Wu3/20/13 11:24 pm
                                                                                                                 Re: ^Derailing This^gamerguy20023/21/13 12:24 am
                                                                                                                       Re: ^Derailing This^Louis Wu3/21/13 12:36 am
                                                                                                                             Re: ^Derailing This^gamerguy20023/21/13 12:50 am
                                                                                                                                   I'm not sure how that was misleadingUnrealCh13f3/21/13 2:06 am
                                                                 Re: You need some perspective.Gravemind3/16/13 9:34 pm
                                                                       Re: You need some perspective.gamerguy20023/17/13 12:14 am
                                                                             Re: You need some perspective.Gravemind3/17/13 1:48 am
                                                                       Re: You need some perspective.Guttsu3/19/13 3:43 pm
                                                                             Re: You need some perspective.Monochron3/20/13 1:44 pm
                                                                 Re: You need some perspective.General Vagueness3/17/13 12:02 pm
                                                                 Let's try this one more time.Louis Wu3/17/13 1:09 pm
                                                                       Re: Let's try this one more time.Avateur3/17/13 10:02 pm
                                                                             My two centsDHalo3/18/13 12:18 am
                                                                             Re: Let's try this one more time.General Vagueness3/18/13 6:20 pm
                                                                                   Re: Let's try this one more time.Avateur3/18/13 9:04 pm
                                                                                         Re: Let's try this one more time.Louis Wu3/19/13 9:06 am
                                                                 Re: You need some perspective.thebruce03/18/13 9:58 am
                                                                       Re: You need some perspective.DHalo3/18/13 11:10 am
                                                                             Re: You need some perspective.thebruce03/18/13 6:21 pm
                                                                                   Re: You need some perspective.DHalo3/18/13 7:36 pm
                                                                                         Re: You need some perspective.Avateur3/18/13 9:15 pm
                                                                                         Re: You need some perspective.Monochron3/19/13 9:35 am
                                                                                               It's... different than Reach *NM*ZackDark3/19/13 11:46 am
                                                                                               Re: You need some perspective.Quirel3/19/13 2:02 pm
                                                                                                     Re: You need some perspective.Monochron3/20/13 2:30 pm
                                                                                                           Re: You need some perspective.Quirel3/20/13 6:28 pm
                                                                                                                 Re: You need some perspective.Monochron3/21/13 2:06 pm
                                                                                                                       Re: You need some perspective.Avateur3/21/13 9:45 pm
                                                                                                                             Re: You need some perspective.Monochron3/22/13 4:07 pm
                                                                                                                                   Re: You need some perspective.Avateur3/22/13 10:07 pm
                                                                                               Re: You need some perspective.UnrealCh13f3/19/13 2:39 pm
                                                                                               Re: You need some perspective.Gravemind3/19/13 4:17 pm
                                                                                                     Re: You need some perspective.Monochron3/20/13 2:25 pm
                                                                                                           Re: You need some perspective.Gravemind3/20/13 8:28 pm
                                                                                                                 Re: You need some perspective.Monochron3/21/13 2:54 pm
                                                                                                                       Re: You need some perspective.Gravemind3/21/13 4:40 pm
                                                                                                                             Re: You need some perspective.Monochron3/21/13 5:26 pm
                                                                                                                                   Re: You need some perspective.Louis Wu3/21/13 5:43 pm
                                                                                                                                         Re: You need some perspective.Monochron3/21/13 6:24 pm
                                                                                                                                   Re: You need some perspective.MacGyver103/21/13 6:00 pm
                                                                                               Reach *was* better than H4tb25719893/20/13 5:19 am
                                         Re: Nah I'm good UnrealGeneral Vagueness3/15/13 7:38 pm
                                               Re: Nah I'm good UnrealGrimBrother One3/16/13 1:18 am
                                                     Re: Nah I'm good UnrealGeneral Vagueness3/16/13 5:36 pm
                       Just pinning a face on it, buddy. *NM*zoojoo3/15/13 12:35 am
     Re: 3-13-13 Bulletingamerguy20023/14/13 11:43 am
     Re: 3-13-13 BulletinChrisTheeCrappy3/14/13 12:42 pm
           Re: 3-13-13 Bulletinpete_the_duck3/14/13 12:50 pm
                 Re: 3-13-13 BulletinChrisTheeCrappy3/14/13 2:23 pm
                       Re: 3-13-13 Bulletingamerguy20023/14/13 2:49 pm
                             Re: 3-13-13 Bulletinpete_the_duck3/14/13 4:06 pm
                                   Re: 3-13-13 BulletinGeneral Vagueness3/15/13 12:12 am
     Re: 3-13-13 BulletinMacGyver103/14/13 1:50 pm

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