So, we’re up to Halo: Reach now. And, I’ll say up front that it was the best Halo I had played so far. A bit sad that the best Halo Bungie made was its last, but at least they went out with a bang.
The best thing about Halo: Reach is its variety. Its environments are many and its play styles are many. You get to traipse all over the planet and see forests, deserts and cities. The outside levels look spectacular and the more cinematic camera angles employed in Reach lead a more film-like quality to the game. The late game level that has you piloting a Falcon and hovering above skyscrapers shows a beautifully demolished urban landscape. There’s also a great level that has you up in space engaged in dog-fighting. It was surprisingly enjoyable. The spacecraft was easy to maneuver and unlike most Halo vehicle combat, it wasn’t frustrating in the least.
I wound up really loving the jet pack armor ability. It was handy in a lot of situations where it let me essentially bypass a lot of enemies and take a shortcut to objectives. I’m not sure if that was an intention of the developers, but the game definitely allowed for exploitation of the jet pack.
The ending was also pretty great. While you wind up saving the day and setting up the story for the beginning of Halo: Combat Evolved, you ultimately don’t make it off Reach and that only makes sense. The galaxy’s only big enough for one savior of Mankind.