Pauls Valley, OK, Pauls Valley Democrat

Columns

March 18, 2010

‘Halo 3: ODST’ more fun than game expanded upon

Pauls Valley — In the world of entertainment there is often a push to see who can win at the been there done that contest. Still, most of us that like to escape from the bill paying world have accepted this and try and at least weed through to those that feel the least recycled. The latest offering from Bungie and Microsoft Game Studios isn’t the freshest example of breaking new ground with old soil, but it is at least presented in a way that gives hardcore fans their latest fix. Heck, in a way I actually found this add on more compelling than the game it expanded from (perhaps it’s that lack of “Oh save us hero for we are but bumbling meat puppets” shtick). “Halo 3: ODST” temporarily makes what otherwise has been a one man super soldier show and throws in halfway believable humanity. Don’t get me wrong, Master Chief has his cool moments, as cliché as they may be, but I can understand if there are those out there that have grown tired of hearing the fanboys’ diatribe. Thankfully you get a chance to see the fight through new eyes with this adventure focusing on the events leading up to “Halo 3.” Sure, you are still considered to be among the best of the crazies, yet this time you play the role of orbital drop shock troopers (a different trooper depending on the mission). You’re mission is to try and figure out why the Covenant decided to invade and trash good old New Mombasa (with good old bad guy stomping fun included). I kind of like how this time around you are actually a bit more vulnerable and must think before you pile into enemy forces. The biggest issue I have with this game is that it does not feel like there is enough added on to make it worth the same price as a regular title. For some of us who can’t afford to buy all the big hits, it actually would have been better to make this no more than half what was charged for the previous Halo title (perhaps an exclusive Xbox Live download instead of putting out packaging). For this reason I can’t recommend anything other than renting until it is considerably cheaper, especially since the multiplayer function that was the bigger part doesn’t offer all that much when you can get the maps separately. Other than that, the controls are decent, the visuals decent enough and the plot no more cheesy than a Lethal Weapon movie (also with less chance of a drunken Mel Gibson sighting). In the end, it could have been much worse and for at least distracting the bigger fans of the series until the big reach hits shelves, I give “Halo 3: ODST” three and a half out of six toggles.

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