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Halo 3

I beat Halo 3 with friends not too long ago, and then a buddy loaned me his XBox. I thought, “I know, I’ll beat it again!”. I’m in the second to last level, mucking around in the bowls of an interstellar carrion crawler — and I am sick of this game.

It’s so hard to believe in the game industry when you are confronted with the juxtaposition of quality rendering and slap-dash, half-baked story telling. Fundamentally, there’s only so much you can do with the implausible idea of one big cyborg dude rushing from destination to destination, killing thousands of aliens that are bigger than him. It doesn’t help when you try to tack on a peculiarly sexy AI that you have to save from monsters, former enemies turned friends without discussion, and a messianic cult of worshipful titles for your avatar. The incomprehensible terminals, loaded with plot points, reveal much of the past but none of the present; the story that unfolds in the game is almost as hard to understand, and far less interesting.

For a shooter, though, Halo 3 is par for the course when it comes to depth. It gets a lot of things right — the AIs are funny; the physics allow for flying, flipping mayhem; the visuals are impressive in scale and quality. It’s failings are the failings of its genre, though it failed in its own special way.


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