Now that I'm on the back end of an awesome Halo 2 party this past weekend, I'm ready to give my official opinion of Halo 2. In fact, I'm ready to name Halo 2 into my top five favorite games of all time, bumping Halo: Combat Evolved off of the list.
Halo 2 has all of the charm, potential, and precision of the original, but with better graphics, ragdoll physics, new vehicles, new weapons, new levels, new gameplay moves, Xbox Live support, support for up to 16 separate Xboxes in a LAN, better player customization options, a better interface, dual wielding of weapons and quicker/easier control over the game options for fine tuning your games. I just honestly don't know what more I could ask for here.
Some of you have expressed dissapointment over the single player campaign. I could care less. I've played maybe eight minutes total of single player. As far as I'm concerned, Halo 2 is a multiplayer game with a single player mode, not the other way around. The only way I will EVER play through the campaign is if my best friend is playing co-op with me. And even then, you're not going to hear one single gripe out of me over whatever cliffhanger ending there is, because I enjoy the process of playing the game, of getting to the ending, and a crappy end cinematic doesn't detract one bit from the fun I would have had playing through all of the levels, especially not in a first-person shooter.
So I give Halo 2 my full stamp of approval, and an unmoveable spot on my list of best party games ever.
Unfortunately Halo 2 is going to have to share my gaming time with quite a few other titles this month, as there are a bunch of releases that I'm itching to play.
I'm definitely going to be picking up Half-Life 2 this week, and Prince of Persia: Warrior Within is a shoe-in for the end of the month.
I'm interested in Vampire: The Masquerade- Bloodlines, but I may hold off on getting into it until my interest in some of the other releases has died down, primarily Half-Life 2. I'm buying Half-Life 2 for the single player element, and I don't suspect I'll be investing too heavily in any multiplayer aspects (Counter-Strike or otherwise).
Everquest 2 can suck my nuts. I was in the closed beta for a while, and I thought the game was shit. I wouldn't touch it with someone else's computer. I also played in the World of Warcraft beta for a few months, and the game was good, but I'm still undecided about whether I'll get into it or not. I sort of feel like I'd rather get back into City of Heroes.
It's too bad they didn't make Demon Stone a co-op game. I would have been all over it if they had.
I'll grab Metroid Prime: Echoes and Viewtiful Joe 2, simply based off of the originals. Those will be primarily for single player, but I'm definitely interested in giving the Metroid Prime multiplayer a go. Here's to hoping I can re-adjust to the controls.
I'm also going to be working extra hard this week in hoping that I can get a week ahead in comic strips. If I manage to do it, I am finally going to take my vacation next week.