Level Up: Halo Review - Combat Evolved Anniversary

By Samual Cale on November 17, 2016 from Level Up via Connect-Bridgeport.com

When the original Halo: Combat Evolved was released in 2001 it was a big hit, so when it was remastered in 2011 it became popular again. I think that every now and then it’s a good thing to go back to the roots of gaming and play a classic. The novelty of playing this classic game is made even better by its relatively new set of graphics.
 
The story of Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary is fairly simple but entertaining nonetheless. You are a super-soldier known as John, Sierra 117, or the Master Chief. You are awakened from your cryo pod on a spaceship called “The Pillar of Autumn” because the ship is alone in unexplored territory and aliens known as The Covenant are attacking. The captain, Jacob Keyes, decides that since the main weapon is damaged, and there are too many Covenant warships that the ship should be evacuated and crash landed on the huge ring-like structure that they had stumbled upon. You take the ship’s artificial intelligence, Cortana, and get on an escape pod with some marines. On the way down, the pod malfunctions, leaving you the only survivor because of your armor. The surface of the ring is strangely similar to Earth and you go about gathering “The Pillar of Autumn’s” survivors. Word reaches you that Captain Keyes has been captured by The Covenant and is being held on a ship parked not too far away, so you go on a mission rescuing him. However, this ring world that you learn is called Halo holds secrets and horrors that most humans of the time can barely comprehend. The battle for survival is not easy (unless you set the difficulty to casual).
 
The gameplay itself is enjoyable, but due to the length of the levels and the game’s repetitive nature it gets a bit boring. The campaign’s gameplay consists mostly of going somewhere, fighting the enemies on the way, fighting the enemies when you get there, and getting an item, only to do it again on the way to the next objective. There are plenty of different enemy types, all of which have different combat functions, but there are not enough to keep the combat spicy for too long. The same applies to weaponry. To survive combat you must sometimes retreat and wait for your energy shields to recharge. If you took damage while your shields were down, you have to find a medkit to get those sections of health back. There are also very few vehicles, a total of four, that can be driven, and they all handle awkwardly. Also, there are a variety of hidden items throughout the campaign. Burn through enough ammunition and use cover, and you may survive.
 
The graphics of Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary were very good at the time they were made and would still be considered decent today. It has a very similar look to Halo Reach. You can also hit a button to change the graphics from the new to the original and back again. The original graphics look really bad today, but were revolutionary at the time. The soundtrack is amazing and implemented so that the song makes the combat feel epic. The only strange cosmetic thing is that sometimes the physics will glitch and a dropped weapon will hit the ground and continuously spin while rapidly making a clacking noise.
 
With respect of a classic game in mind as well as the standards of gaming, I give Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary a 7 out of 10. Its story is good, and its gameplay is decent. Its graphics and soundtrack are impressive. I appreciate it because it has led to a great gaming franchise that has expanded the gaming community as a whole. Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary is sold on its own and is also part of the Master Chief Collection on the Xbox One, and is an Xbox exclusive game.



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