Originally released by Bungie in 2001, ‘Halo’ was a military-style first-person-shooter game with a science fiction storyline. In the futuristic timeline of the game, humanity is entrenched in an interstellar war with an army of aliens called the ‘Covenant’. The player follows the war through the eyes of ‘Master Chief’, who is one of a group of suited super-soldiers called ‘Spartans’. Curious where the term ‘Halo’ fits in? Well the alien Covenant – and their religious leaders, the ‘Prophets’ – worship an ancient civilization known as the ‘Forerunners’. Before those Forerunners died out, they created huge, habitable structures in the shape of large rings – or halos – that were designed to destroy all sentient life on a planet. So the ‘Halo’ in question, is basically a doomsday device.
The original Halo game was released during my final year of high school, and it became a quick favorite amongst my group of friends for it’s multiplayer capabilities. Mind, you young whippersnappers, that back then ‘multiplayer’ still heavily meant multiple players sitting on the same couch together and playing on the same machine. My friends and I would get together and play matches of four players at a time, with the losers swapping out to play anyone who was waiting in the wings. We would often play the ‘Gorge’ stage, which was a wide open field with a base at each end and several crags and caves to sneak away into. We would regularly include the ‘Warthog’ in our stages, because it was just plain hysterical to run over each other with the large all-terrain vehicle. My favorite item, however, was the sticky-grenade. If you managed to throw the glowing blue grenades with enough accuracy to actually hit your opponent, it would stick to their armor, making it impossible for them to get away from the blast. It was by far my favorite thing to do to my friends because it was a bit like adding insult to injury.
The Halo franchise only grew and grew after the first installment, with Halo 2 being released three years after the original, soon to be followed by Halo 3. To date there are ten Halo games, with two more in the process of being produced. Personally I only played three of the available games because, to be honest, Halo is one of those series that suffers from the ‘Call-of-Duty-Effect’ – that is, they’re all more or less clones of each other. That said, my friends and I had some good times with the original couple of installments, so for that reason the series holds a special place in my memories.
Have you played any of the Halo series of games? Which one is your favorite? Are you a single-player campaign kind of person, or were you all about the multiplayer? How good is your aim with a sticky-grenade? Please share!
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