Review of the game Halo Infinite

Halo Infinite was supposed to be released a year ago with the launch of the Xbox Series X console, but after the gameplay demonstration, the game community criticized the quality of the project and the game was postponed. During the year, the developers from 343i almost did not show the campaign and shifted all their attention to multiplayer, the closed beta test of which, on the contrary, pleased all players. And so much so that it was released a few weeks before the release of the story campaign, for free, which of course had a very positive effect on the acceptance of the game.

And now, finally, the whole game has become fully available. We tell you how Halo Infinite turned out.

Plot

If you do not go into the ups and downs of the events of the Halo universe, then the plot of Infinite is very simple: the villain wants to destroy humanity with the help of a huge structure in the form of a cosmic ring built by an ancient highly developed forerunner race. If it’s a little more complicated, then at the very beginning, the permanent hero of the game, the Master Chief, is defeated and the leader of the Exiles, Atriox, throws him into outer space. There, after some time, the pilot of the landing ship finds Chief and together they fly to Zeta – the same space ring installation, on the inside of which there is a livable ecosystem, that is, forests, mountains and rivers.

While the Chief drifted in space, Atriox died, and his henchman Esharum still wants to destroy humanity with the help of the ring, completing the chief’s plan. You, in the person of the inflexible Master Chief, must stop him. In addition, you immediately find an artificial intelligence named Weapon, who destroyed Cortana, but for some reason is still alive after that, although he should have self-destructed. And all this – the first 15 minutes of the game.

Halo Infinite continues the plot of the previous parts, but leaves all the important and global events behind the scenes. Halo 5 ended with Cortana, who had previously been a loyal companion of the Master Chief, gone mad and seized a powerful weapon on a galactic scale, threatening to destroy all who would not stand by her side. But the continuation of these events in Halo Infinite is told at the end of the game in small flashbacks. It would make sense if Chief had amnesia, but no. In fact, he knows the whole game about everything, except for the specific moment of Cortana’s death, but he does not tell us.

As a result, Chief’s gameplay adventures in Halo Infinite feel very local, lacking in scale. We destroyed an infection that could devour the entire universe, saved humanity from the Covenant, fought ancient deities, and here, in fact, we are simply looking for the missing link in Chief’s memory, while at the same time kicking a small group of mercenaries in the ass.

Against this background, the game turned out to be very weak enemies. Esharum is the main villain. He is in contact with you throughout the game and does not inspire fear at all. Esharum will constantly appear in the form of huge holograms, and sometimes in the most absurd places like some kind of nook among the boxes in the corridor, and will push long bombastic speeches that do not cause any emotions at all.

The problem is that Esharum only does what he just says. The Master Chief runs about his business, solves more important problems, and the main villain roars from the loudspeakers, periodically sending “bosses” to defeat you. But these bosses differ from ordinary soldiers by the presence of a name and a large bar of life, and are destroyed in much the same way as the rest.

To make the player hate the villain, he still has to personally do some dirty tricks so that the player can whisper to himself “what a bastard!” and wish for victory over him. But in Halo Infinite, you want to kill the villain, just so that he no longer babbles arrogant nonsense that humanity is doomed and will soon put an end to the Master Chief.

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There is one more enemy in the game, but in the whole game you cross paths with him twice. His motives remain very vague, especially if you are not aware of the global situation in the world of Halo. The villains somehow interfere very little in the affairs of the Chief, which is why they seem to be just “another soldiers”, of which you will kill a lot while you run around the “Zeta” ring.

Gameplay

Halo Infinite is a first-person shooter set in a small open world. Everything about shooting is top notch. The weapon shoots pleasantly and is felt, the enemies react to shots also very effectively and always try to bypass you. When fighting takes place in small, enclosed spaces, fighting exiles is a bit like DOOM Eternal – you have to constantly move and react to what is happening. And one of the cool innovations in the series helps with this – the grappling hook. If the object is light, you can pull it; if the object is heavy, you are drawn to it. And in flight with a hook, you can slightly adjust the direction of movement.

As a result, this generates quite interesting chains of actions, where, for example, you can pull an explosive element towards you, and then throw it at an enemy or quickly grab a more powerful weapon from the ground if your ammo runs out. Likewise, you can pull yourself towards enemies, giving them a strong kick, and simply cover distances by quickly moving to higher levels or into cover.

The grappling hook really makes the gameplay more varied and easy to learn, and if you set the difficulty of the game higher, the grappling hook will become your best friend. Unfortunately, given the scale of the game and its length, he quickly runs out of new moves.

This is, in my opinion, the first open-world issue of Halo Infinite. You will try all the cool things and jokes in the first couple of hours of the game, and then they will not give you anything new. Weapons and explosive elements are all that you can attract, not even grapple puzzles. The same enemies, the same weapons, the same landscapes. Somewhere in the middle of the game, two new enemies will be added, the approach to which will be exactly the same as to the rest: aim the sight, pull the trigger. At the same time, you begin to use the grappling hook not for creative killings, but to overcome huge empty spaces or arenas with a bunch of enemies, the purpose of which is simply to waste your time.

The second problem with Halo Infinite is the same errors. Filling the levels, the developers of 343i were clearly inspired by the very first game in the series. On the one hand, this causes nostalgia and pleasant memories, but on the other hand, the developers copied all the errors that the series got rid of long ago. An empty open world at the top and long empty levels at the bottom that are simply carbon-copied. That is, you enter a metal corridor, from it you get into a small arena, from where you get into exactly the same corridor, and from it into exactly the same arena. And then in a couple of minutes these corridors and arenas will repeat, one to one.

The entire surface consists mainly of forests and mountains, where enemies will humbly wait for you on the same bases of different sizes. But there are no unique points of interest here. There are no unexpected situations generated by the open world either. There are secondary tasks like capturing outposts, rescuing soldiers, and destroying important enemy points, but all this is needed rather to be able to order vehicles and weapons from captured bases.

You can go through the story campaign without this, unless it doesn’t hurt to collect a few points for pumping Chief’s armor, which, by the way, are not tied to completing tasks. As a result, for 15 hours in a row you are either in the forest or in metal corridors.

And the saddest thing is that Halo Infinite does not insist on creativity in any way. That is, you can just sit in a small alien glider “Ghost” and calmly and methodically clear all points on it. Due to the large open spaces, the enemy cannot quickly close the distance to stick a grenade unnoticed or knock you out of the saddle. The Halo equation works well in small, well-designed rooms, but when you push the game into a narrow corridor or large spaces, the dynamics immediately collapse.

Multiplayer

PvP in Halo Infinite is as classic as possible and is divided into two main modes: 4 × 4 and 12 × 12 battles. Where there are more people, vehicles are also available. Well, inside – different variations of team combat, capture the flag and dragging energy cores. Halo has always had a very flexible match editor, where you can create some pretty unusual variations of custom battles, but there are still few of them in public playlists.

Conditions in matches are almost always simple: all fighters are the same, everyone has the same starting weapon, and other guns and gadgets can be obtained on the map. In short, equal conditions that are perfectly balanced and designed only for your skill. The only downside is progression. There is no upgrading of weapons or armor, only a fixed experience that gives access to not the most diverse customization: coloring pages, emblems and armor elements that affect only the appearance of a fighter. For some players, this may not be enough.

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Graphic arts

The overall visuals in Halo Infinite are pleasant, but not outstanding. The landscapes look organic, the lighting is good, the environment is well detailed, but there are no situations that directly amaze the eye and imagination. But there are artifacts when the textures twitch or the lighting fails, but in general everything is within the normal range. Good, peppy graphics, nothing more. Of course, given what was shown a year ago, the work on improving the picture was successful.

Verdict

The developers of Halo Infinite took a step back to go back to the roots and restart the storyline a bit, but at the same time they forgot what the series had already achieved. Hook-Cat did a great job of refreshing the gameplay and adding a new layer of entertainment, but there were too few extras for it. The same goes for the open world, in which everything is done to a minimum.

On the one hand, it works like a remake of the very first Halo, but on the other hand, modern open-world games offer much more, at least in filling locations. I’m already silent about the study of additional events.

Halo Infinite has huge potential and a good base, but the creators of the game were either afraid to piss off the players again, or the developers simply didn’t have enough time to add more variety to the project, so they made a very strong, but minimal. The gameplay of Halo Infinite is sure to give pleasure, but in the long run it can tire with monotony.


The story campaign, along with secondary tasks, was completed on PC in about 15 hours.

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