Halo 4 has been available for just over a month now which has given millions of players across the world ample opportunity to flesh out the new features and mechanics of the game. 343 Industries altered both the campaign and multiplayer experiences compared to past iterations of the Halo franchise, but some changes are more noticeable and game-changing than others. Focusing on multiplayer only, there are four major tweaks that have changed the dynamic of online play.
1. Sprinting – One of the key gameplay characteristics of Halo franchises in the past is the lack of ability to sprint. Sprinting is a common feature in almost every other first-person-shooter, so it is not a surprise that 343 included the ability within Halo 4. Although this may seem like a small alteration, it drastically changes the style of online games and strategies: most notably, it demands more teamwork for successful kills. Sprinting allows players to escape quicker (obviously), but also more frequently. Teamwork is a necessity for victories to help finish kills and not allow players to sprint to safety. In addition, sprinting also shrinks the levels in relative terms. In Halo 3, it would take a good amount of time to walk from one side of Valhalla to the other. On Ragnarok within Halo 4, which has the exact same level design, it takes drastically less time to traverse the terrain while sprinting. This shrinks big levels and changes the dynamic drastically.
2. Ordinances – The newest game type within Halo 4 is Infinity Slayer. Within Infinity Slayer, the obvious addition is the inclusion of personal ordinances which drop perks, grenades, or guns based on the accumulation of points from helping your team. Ordinances give players a choice between three upgrades that are always random. These upgrades always have the potential to change the momentum of a game. In a big team battle an ordinance could drop a laser enabling you to take out all of the other team’s vehicles. On the flip side, in a 4 on 4 match an ordinance could drop a shotgun and help a team get five kills very quickly. The mystery behind ordinances is what makes them fun and keeps them fresh. Creativity is rewarded with ordinances as well. Teammates can combine ordinance drops to really boost a specific player’s performance. A damage boost coupled with a Saw Gun is magical and can turn the tide of any slayer game.
3. Power Weapon Locations are Shown – This change seems like a subtle one to players who may be newer to the Halo franchise, however, for strategic players who know their facts, this changes a lot. In past Halo iterations, weapon spawns were based on time played within each map. Veteran players/teams knew exactly when and where the rockets or sniper would spawn and could gain a leg up on the competition by obtaining them first. At the start of each game within Halo 4 the location of the power weapons are shown for everyone to see. In addition, whenever a power weapon spawns during the course of play the location is shown. This is advantageous for more inexperienced players in that they know where to go to obtain powerful weapons. It is slightly detrimental to players who know the map layouts and play strategically to obtain the best weaponry possible.
4. Flag Capturing is permanent – A major change within the objective playlists comes within Capture the Flag. Once a player picks up the flag for capture they cannot drop it. This morphs how teams play CTF. If a player is going to go for a flag capture there is no turning back. They need to have their team in place to support them because all they will have is a pistol (and the flag for beat downs) to protect themselves. The inability to put the flag down and defend yourself with a primary gun is a real game changer. On a lighter note, the inability to drop the flag also gets rid of the classic flag run that so many people have come to love.
Overall, the changes 343 Industries have made within Halo 4 have been received positively. The general feel from the four tweaks mentioned above is that they all work to facilitate teamwork and try to balance the game out for players of all stages.
Lucas has evolved in his video game preferences. With a foundation in predominantly sports game, action adventure games are now his favorite to play. He is a competitive swimmer and likes to play volleyball, basketball, and golf.
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Halo 4 has been available for just over a month now which has given millions of players across the world ample opportunity to flesh out the new features and mechanics of the game. 343 Industries altered both the campaign and multiplayer experiences compared to past iterations of the Halo franchise, but some changes are more noti