NOTE: ODST is an expansion rather than a stand-alone title. So for those of you who complain about it not having enough content, there you go. Why is it $60? Because Microsoft said so. Now, onto the review…
After a year of anticipation, Halo 3: ODST dropped into our disc trays. After the first week of playthroughs, the biggest question remains: Is ODST worthy of a Halo title?
First off, ODST DOES play differently than previous Halo titles. Learning curves are there, but not difficult. These learning curves consist of throwing grenades, jumping, and the way you conserve your health. This change is a breath of fresh air to anyone who feels Halo 3 has grown to be boring or bland. Another thing about ODST’s gameplay is the fact that you can’t carry equipment around anymore, though, the Brutes sure do use it.
The gameplay difference is instantly noticeable both at the start of the game and the minute you pop in Halo 3’s multiplayer disc. The disc has different menus along with music from Halo 3’s campagin. Now that was a breath of fresh air.
ODST’s story mode is both addictive and fun at the same time. You are a rookie ODST and your squad has seperated from you during the drop. You go through the city finding clues as to what happened to your missing squad mates. Then when you stumble onto a clue, you go into a sequence where you play as one of your ODST squad mates.
Overall, the controls are somewhat the same as Halo 1-3. Any Halo player knows that “R” is to shoot and “L” is to throw grenades. The only difference here is that “X” activates your VISR mode. VISR mode allows you to see at night, identify enemies and find valuables around the city more easily.
Since this is more of an expansion, rather than a new game, ODST has not recieved a major graphical overhaul. Instead, it looks like Halo 3. The character models look the same, the guns fire the same way, and the enviroment carries the same traits as Halo 3. This goes for gameplay too. If you loved Halo 3’s gameplay, then you’ll be sure to love this. There are a few dull moments in ODST, but that’s only if you fail to find a mongoose in New Mombasa.
Considering with what was said above, the graphics for ODST do not distract from the actual gameplay. One thing that does distract from the gameplay are the in-game cutscenes. Unlike Halo 3, the cutscenes aren’t pre-rendered. I know some of you may not like this – though it’s important to note that you should treat this game as if it came out one day after Halo 3. Only then can you appreciate it to its fullest potential.
Fun Factor: 9.5/10
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