- Release Date:2004-11-09
- In-universe Date:2552 AD
- Series:The Original Halo Trilogy
Halo 2 when looked at as a sequel to the first game is a great progression, but pales in comparison to everything that has happened since. Although the multilayer was possibly the best Halo has seen, much of the campaign suffers.
However the story, arguably the most important part, does take bold steps in the right direction. The game gets into the organization, hierarchy, and philosophy of the Covenant much better than we’ve seen before making it seem much deeper and consequential. Also, switching back and forth between Master Chief and the Arbiter is refreshing though possibly disappointing to those who are traditional Master Chief fans. It can also be a bit confusing trying to figure out who to shoot at and who’s your ally. My favorite part of the story was definitely the ending which leaves it in a cliffhanger, but is also satisfying and well written
The gameplay does sport a number of improvements especially with dual wielding, the battle rifle, and the enhanced villains with the Brutes (very fun). The gameplay still remains balanced, though slightly more difficult.
The biggest problem, consistent with the gameplay and story, is how “busy” it gets. The story can get so complicated that it becomes difficult to understand what is going on and why. The maps and campaign layout is the same: very busy, cluttered, and difficult to navigate. The first game was known for its sprawling epic environments, but unfortunately Halo 2 has not been able to deliver the same. It feels cluttered and no where near as epic.
Overall, the game is a mixture of improvements and mistakes. Thankfully the mistakes are small enough to overlook and were quickly fixed late on.
Anniversary remake of the original was released in November 11, 2014.