Reach Gives Gamers Tactical Edge


I’ve played every release of Halo since the franchise first came out in 2001, and as with the previous versions, Halo Reach did not disappoint me. Halo: Reach is the fourth installment of the franchise, but it’s a prequel to the first Halo. Halo: Reach takes you to Reach, a sister planet to Earth, in the year 2552 just before a frightening surprise attack by a group of ruthless, terrifying alien invaders called the Covenant.

You go through the game as Noble 6, the newest member of Noble team (a group of Spartan soldiers stationed on Reach). The group consists of the leader, Carter-A259, his second-in-command, the bionic armed KatB320, heavy gunner Jorge-052, sharpshooter Jun-A266 and the deadly Emile-A239. Over the course of 10 missions, Noble team attempts to hold off the inevitable in an increasingly desperate fight for survival, escape, revenge and eventually for hope.

“The game is epic and compelling, and I think people are really going to enjoy the characters,” says Frank O’Connor, Halo’s franchise development director. “The game is true to its core, but it’s going to feel like a whole new world as well, and it’s exactly the kind of experience you want in an epic, sci-fi video game – or movie, for that matter.”

Right off I thought the best addition is the armor abilities, not to mention the nice graphics. The abilities are a big evolution from Halo 3, and drastically change the way you play, adding bursts of speed, jet packs (limited flight), invincible armor, a hologram of yourself to distract enemies and more. These capabilities give you a nice tactical edge.

The campaign piece is fairly short. If you dedicate an entire Saturday afternoon to it, you can finish it in six to seven hours. To most gamers that is disappointingly short, but Reach’s focus is really the multiplayer mode. There are so many new game modes, battlegrounds, weapons, load outs and social/community features that you’ll almost never grow bored.

The bottom line is Halo: Reach is a must-have whether you’re a Halo fan or not. Even if you’re tired of the Halo formula throughout its 10-year history, you’ll still find great entertainment with this release. Find this Xbox 360-only game at your nearest GameSpot ( or for $60.


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