Friday, February 9, 2007

Editorial: Why the Halo3 Beta is a bad idea

I'm starting to get a bad vibe about the upcoming Beta for Halo 3. No, it's not because I'm jealous for not getting in, but rather because I'm looking at the pics and videos that have been release so far and I have to ask, "Is that it?" So far all the leaked gameplay looks no better than a polished up, 720p version of Halo 2.

Other than simply having a magic name that will drive fanboys nuts, Halo 3 despite the monster guerrilla ad campaign has yet to show me anything that makes me go "holy crap!" Case in point: The Monday Night Football commercial. We all watched it and we were pumped, only the next morning we were a little letdown when we found out the whole thing was CGI'd and acted out by Hollywood. The folks at Bungie went so far as to add that nothing in the commercial represented actual gameplay. Major letdown.

This leads me back to why the Beta could be a bad idea: If this thing does not represent a quantum leap over Halo 2 in terms of graphics and gameplay, those of us not participating in it will hear about it. With over 100,000 estimated participants in the Beta, all the glitches and faults are going to get aired out in forums and blogs worldwide. Regardless of Bungie's actions to fix everyone's complaints, this is going to take a lot of the shine off Microsoft's most prominant Xbox franchise. God forbid that word sneaks out from the hard core gamers that this thing sucks.

On the other hand, if it rules, then it could build a wave of hype that would probably crush all the competition through the summer and into the fall. I really hope they blow my mind, I really do, but I'm afraid that the end product is not going to be so revolutionary and that in the end, we'll all be eagerly anticipating a 2008 Gears of War 2.

That is all.


KicKnWinG 2 said...

ALA Halo to Halo 2 transition. Something microsoft should consider: Halo 1 online.

BYRDMAN2020 said...

The pictures on bungie look pretty bad ass to me and you know the last thing they do before they release any game is polish the graphics. The beta will look decent but I bet the final version of Halo 3 will look even better.

I recently talked to a few people in GameStop and they said that Crackdown was actually a pretty cool game. I reserved a copy just in case I change my mind.

sYPHER said...

I really hoped you'd have provided a better argument than "The pictures aren't pretty enough"... You're totally looking past the keyword in all those screens: ALPHA build. as in, they look like halo 2 because all that really is at the moment is a pimped out halo 2 running on 360. You can expect a better looking game out of the next beta and final builds...

Army Strong said...

Dude, it's not about the pictures. I understand Alphas and roughs. I'm afraid that the monstrosity known as the Beta is going to create a wave of unbelievable bitching that will manage to damper even my enthusiasm. If people bitch that something sucks over and over, eventually, it is what it is. Perception is reality.