Who didn’t play Halo back in the day, and who doesn’t have those amazing memories of having to skip sleep, just because the squad is still online? Or spending countless hours on farming missions with friends, all to be left alone in the bitter end? Well, good news for you! Halo: Reach has now finally come to PC, and oh boy, we finally have players again in multiplayer. But the question remains: Is it any good? That is what I will try to answer for you today.
What we liked!
- The nostalgia: I am aware that this is not an actual point for most of the games, but somehow the game does bring back a huge amount of good vibes back from the old days. The days of Xbox live, having the squad back together, it just all felt magical. And that was also the exact idea they had in mind when bringing this game over to PC. Since they tried to just moderately change all the graphics, and for the most part, they just brought the game over, with added mouse and keyboard support (more on that later).
- Music choice: From the nostalgic title screen Halo sounds to the in-game battles, the game does try to make you feel like you are involved. I even encountered some great moments during the campaign where they added some rock music to emphasis the gameplay and gunfight even more.
- Graphics: The game does feel simple, but that was to be expected. But yet it looked better then what I recalled. Also, I am very pleased to announce that once you boot up the game, it has native ultrawide support all the way to maximum resolution, without the crop. Just a small complaint is that they could spread out the HUD a little more for an ultrawide 21:9 aspect ratio.
- Multiplayer gameplay: Multiplayer feels amazing to play, just the sheer “attack the objective”, with a squad of friends, makes this game a killer! The other game modes also felt amazing to play, such as Firefight and Invasion.
- Carrying over statistics: When I first launched the game, I was greeted with a notification that: “if you sign in with an Xbox live account, you can carry on all your progress of the previous Halo”. Which after logging in, auto completed multiple achievements on steam, and also automatically added most of my friends that used to play on Xbox. Quite a nice touch if you ask me.
- The campaign: During the campaign missions, you get to actually be part of a medium-long mission line that actually does add quite a pleasing experience to your future gameplay. For reasons, I won’t spoil what sorts of feelings, since that would include the end of the campaign, but I do highly advise you to go and try it out for yourself, and maybe let us know on Twitter what you thought of your first run of the campaign.
- The navigation system: While at a lot of moments, it is very clear what the current objective is, there are still heaps of moments where I found myself circling around to find where to go. Mission statements as: “Drive to the next control tower”, while no arrow shows where you have to go, and there is also no control tower insight, really asked a tole on my enjoyment. Of course, if you cannot find the tower for a while, there will appear a marker to tell you where you have to go, probably can be solved easily by the developer, but has not been implemented.
What we disliked
Mouse and keyboard: The game now has this extra feature but yet, it does not feel right. For starters, they could have mapped the game controls to a “location” on the keyboard, so that people who use a different layout on their keyboard wouldn’t have to either rebind all the keys or actually have to swap their layout to QWERTY, just to be able to move. Loads of bigger companies have done this, and it is a free fix, yet not implemented. Also aiming with the mouse does feel different than aiming with a controller, since the way the barrel reacts to moving the mouse, feels very “controller-like” and heavily aim assisted.
So as a matter of testing, I connected my XBOX controller to the computer, and oh boy, does the game feel amazing playing that way.
While in the past I wasn’t that much of a Halo fan, partially because I was more of a strategy player, then a shooter player, I actually did enjoy my time in Halo: Reach PC. If it already wasn’t just because I got a lot of nostalgic vibes playing the game, then it must be because playing the campaign was an amazing story to be part of. After reading a little bit on the internet, it turns out that the intention would be to also release the later sequels of Halo on PC, which I also look forward to playing. But overall, the feeling while playing the game, together with the bugless and smooth gameplay, and the nostalgia, leaves me to rate the game on a solid 75% positivity rating (which would be for returning Halo players).
If you are used to having highly detailed shooters, such as Black ops, or Modern warfare, and are expecting the same level of detail in Halo, then this might not be the game for you. But if you are planning on treating it as an “old school make-over” for PC, then you will have a blast.
23-year-old pc enthusiast. Some would call me a chair-potato, just cause I spend too much time there. Also passionate FPV drone pilot and nature photographer.