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Halo 4

Halo 4 Map Pack DLC photo
Halo 4 Map Pack DLC

Impressions: Halo 4: Majestic Map Pack

Close quarters combat
Feb 27
// Chris Carter
In many ways, the Crimson Map Pack was a bit of a letdown for Halo 4 fans. The over-emphasis on vehicles and the concept of giant new maps on top of over-saturated giant maps from the base game was really frustrating, and did...

I know what a game is

Feb 27 // Daniel Starkey
Trying to define something -- especially something whose definition would appear at first to be completely clear and free from dissension -- is no easy task. Take time, for example. I don’t think I heard anything that I would consider an acceptable definition of time until I was well into a decent physics course. Even then it seems at least once a week that definition is tweaked and refined. That sort of constant, steady modification is one of the important elements of this conversation, as it seems patently absurd to me, that anyone would get themselves so wrapped up in one, immutable definition for something that is always in flux. Language, art, communication -- these things are always changing and evolving. What we consider classics, in many cases, were once considered pretentious tripe, or the works of the foolish, lecherous, and the uneducated. To say that you know, without a doubt, the absolute final, permanent and unchanging definition of anything is a species of arrogance I can’t even begin to fathom. And if you’re one of those people, you should probably stop reading because you won’t benefit from anything I have to say. Anti-game activists fall back on the two conditions I listed above: 1) a game must have rules and 2) it must have a “win state.” Both of these qualifications seem odd to me. The first one is basically worthless, in the sense that, anything that you can do would arguably have a set of rules. Life has rules; anything you ever do or interact with is limited by something. That point is so non-specific as to be completely meaningless and applicable to nothing. The second condition, that games must have some kind of “win state” is a little better, but still leaves many things that most would consider games out of the “real games” party. Is Simon a game? Minecraft? What about Tetris? Or Missile Command? Skyrim? None of these things that I would readily call games have a “win state” that is clear, with three of them being completely unbeatable. Jane McGonigal, one of the more interesting people working on the more pragmatic side of what I will call “videogame design theory,” has perhaps one of the best, though ultimately imperfect definitions of what a “game” is. She claims that every game, whether it is video, board, or playground, shares four fundamental traits: a goal, rules and limitations, a feedback system, and voluntary participation. Unlike the hopelessly unclear requirements of only a set of rules and a “win state,” Jane’s set of traits work together to increase their collective specificity. Her rules could also be interpreted as obstructions to the goal of a player. And the requirement for voluntary participation safeguards against simply calling anything anyone ever does a “game.” Indeed, my only real issue with her list is the “goal” part. I don’t like Proteus. I don’t like Dear Esther. I don’t like Twine games. Still, they are all games. Proteus is, to me at least, about exploration. I was underwhelmed by this exploration, primarily because I think plenty of games accomplish the same goal, the same sense of wonder and the same kind of otherworldly fascination, without needing to be so unnecessarily obtuse. There is also a very clear feedback mechanism -- different bits of the environment react and interact with you and the rest of the world based on your presence. Over time, they steadily guide you to see a few specific things. Whether or not you find those things interesting and whether or not you care about how they change is irrelevant. They do, along with a given rule set, exist. If, for example, you chose to ignore every clue or signal that the game gave you, and simply decided to wander aimlessly until your boredom grew sufficiently large to stop playing -- then you might not ever know what any of the core pieces of the game are. Ignorance of all of the disparate elements, however, doesn’t immediately disqualify its status as a game, though. It isn’t uncommon for me to approach a game with a different mindset than most of my friends. I, allegedly, am a professional game critic and I have a certain set of things that I look for and continuously slot away in a mental filing cabinet while playing. When that “critic hat” comes off, though, I’m often known to be one of the more ... unruly players. In Halo, I’ll often use sticky grenades on teammates that are about to ride off in a vehicle. Sometimes In Capture the Flag modes, I’ve been known to kill people on my team so they can’t score points. In these instances, my goal not only differs from those the designers intended, but they transcend them. I give up trying to win, and create new goals for myself. Surely, McGonigal and others would argue that I am creating my own sub-games within the established rule set. Instead of Capturing the Flag, my new goal would simply be to fuel my own amusement. Rules? Whatever I think is funny. Feedback? My own laughter. Each of these things would exist and be bound not only by the structure of Halo’s regular multiplayer modes, but my own set of conditions as well. I do the very same thing in single-player titles when I’m not reviewing them. If I start finding a game boring or frustrating, I co-opt its mechanics to allow me to do ... whatever it is I can. I look for things to break, new ways in which I can manipulate different elements of the game so that I can extract whatever entertainment value I can salvage. I’ve already established that these changes are, in themselves, creating new games within something larger. Why then, would my doing the same thing in other titles not count? If a player begins ignoring everything the developer is trying to tell them, what difference does it make in which digital world that act of creation takes place? If no goal is ever clearly given merely because you never progress far enough to see if you, the player, don’t know the goal, is it still a game?  Everyone has their set of reasons for playing games, and we could be forgiven for trying to project our own expectations onto others. It raises the question though, why anyone else genuinely cares what gets called what. I think that’s the real issue here. That some people feel that their way of life, or their hobby is being threatened. It’s a weird, relatable-yet-irrational sort of paranoia. That seems to be happening a lot lately.
I know what a game is photo
But I don't really think it matters in the first place
A lot of people have been running around attacking games like Proteus or The Walking Dead; claiming that they aren’t, in fact, games. Generally speaking these people spout off random things about requiring “win st...

New releases photo
New releases

New releases: Brutal Legend makes PCs metal

Plus Dynasty Warriors 7: Empires, Etrian Odyssey IV, and Star Wars Pinball
Feb 25
// Fraser Brown
Monday has once again snuck up on us like an unfortunate rash you got from a really good weekend. Don't worry, there's cream for that! And much like a soothing medicinal balm, the new releases of the week are here to cure wh...
Halo 4 DLC screens photo
Halo 4 DLC screens

Halo 4 Majestic Map Pack screens leaked

Landfall, Monolith, and Skyline
Feb 17
// Chris Carter
We're nearly ten days away from the supposed launch of Halo 4's second DLC offering, the "Majestic Map Pack," and a savvy NeoGAF user has uncovered some screenshots through editing URLs on the Halo website. Just like the Crim...
Coco plays Halo 4 photo
Coco plays Halo 4

Cortana can update Conan O'Brien's 'firmware' any day

Clueless Gamer reviews Halo 4
Feb 07
// Tony Ponce
Conan O'Brien is back with another episode of Clueless Gamer, wherein he plays videogames and exhibits no signs whatsoever that he knows what he's doing. Today's game: Halo 4. First he learns that the Covenant worship Theo H...

Team Doubles coming to Halo 4 matchmaking

Intense 2v2 action incoming
Feb 04
// Keith Swiader
This week's Halo 4 matchmaking update will include the long-awaited Team Doubles playlist, 343 Industries revealed on Halo Waypoint, and with it, three match variants. First up, Infinity Doubles offers up the standard Infinit...
Halo 2 PC server shutdown photo
Halo 2 PC server shutdown

Halo 2 PC servers will officially shut down next month

Also, here's more info on Spartan Ops
Jan 17
// Chris Carter
The blowout post goes through quite a bit of Halo 4 info, from Spartan Ops play stats, to complete summaries of the episodic stories so far, to a teaser for Episode 6. On Monday, January 21, Episode 6 will drop, as will the "...

Here's what's on the horizon for Halo 4

Two more DLC packs and Spartan Ops
Jan 10
// Chris Carter
The folks over at 343 Industries have posted a fireside chat of sorts, explaining the state of Halo 4, and what they intend to do with it in the months to come. In addition to a nice little note about the launch of Halo 4, 34...

Get in the Halo mood with this trick jumping video

Sick Halo 4 jumps brah
Jan 07
// Chris Carter
If there's one thing I love, it's Halo trick jump videos. The creator, ReiKo from, takes on some really cool jumps from the original maps and the ones included in the Crimson map pack. Not only are the jumps actua...

The Halo 4 Mythbusters video series has some neat tips

Episode 4
Dec 31
// Chris Carter
Halo 4 has been out for nearly two months now, which means people have had a sufficient amount of time to f*ck with it. As the community suggests more and more crazy things to mess around with, the folks at Defend the House ...

Halo 4's Spartan Ops Episode 5 is out

You can enjoy the Memento Mori chapter now
Dec 03
// Chris Carter
The fifth offering of Halo 4's Spartan Ops program is out today, so boot up your game's Infinity menu and select it at will. If you're wondering what the episode is about, it involves secrets and betrayal (like any standard ...

Check your email for your Halo 4 specialization code

Microsoft has started sending them out
Dec 01
// Chris Carter
Halo 4 takes a decidedly different approach to prestiging in a first person shooter. Normally after reaching max level in multiplayer in a contemporary FPS, you'll have the option to "prestige" and start over. 343 Studios has...

Halo 4's Crimson Map Pack targeting December 10

New mode detailed
Nov 29
// Jordan Devore
The first in a planned trio of map packs for Halo 4, the Crimson Map Pack (800 Microsoft Points), is scheduled to introduce three new locales for War Games on Monday, December 10. The maps are titled Wreckage, Harvest, and S...

Halo 4's Spartan Ops Episode 4 releases today

Keep on Spartan-ing, Spartan
Nov 26
// Chris Carter
Episode 4 of Halo 4's Spartan Ops campaign is dropping today on Xbox Live. Like past episodes, all you need to do is boot up your game, go to Spartan Ops, and it'll automatically show up. Make sure you play them in the most f...

Halo 4 Map Pack dates allegedly leaked

We now have exact dates instead of monthly windows
Nov 26
// Chris Carter
According to this dashboard image found by, the release dates for all three Halo 4 map packs have been allegedly outed. According to a German dashboard ad, the Crimson Map Pack will drop on December 10th, the ...

Four things I'd like to see in Halo 5

Nov 16 // Daniel Starkey
That seems so long ago now. After finishing Halo 4, I must admit -- I was very impressed. The art direction is beyond stunning, the characters are stronger and better written, and the tone has shifted from that of glorified destruction to something more poignant and personal. While still far from perfect, its improvements are substantive enough to give me hope for the next installment. As such, I've come up with four things that I think 343 might want to try for Halo 5. HUGE SPOILER WARNING, PROCEED WITH CAUTION 1. Keep asking relevant questions For over a decade, we’ve guided Master Chief through untold legions of enemies. Throughout all of that, he’s barely shown anything resembling an emotional response. Halo 4’s opening offers some brief insight into the apparent sociopathy of our iconic hero. Halsey, architect of the Spartan super soldier program which spawned the Chief, is seen discussing the near total lack of humanity in her subjects. The audience learns that the UNSC seeks to expand the program, creating more “soulless” Spartans. This scene begs a very interesting question: will genetic engineering, the modification of ourselves, inexorably lead to a loss of our own humanity? It is by no means a novel concept, but within the context of the Halo series, it gives players additional background for the character of Master Chief. It also allows the audience to question whether or not the actions of Halsey are justified, whether there are circumstances under which the horrendously violent ends justify the means. When faced with the potential eradication of every person ever, I can’t say what I would do. It’s a tough question, and while it might feed into the right-wing pro-military narrative, it isn’t necessarily without value, especially if the rest of the story directs the audience to question its own moral stance on the issue. 2. Darker, more psychological story After seeing the trailer for Halo 4 and witnessing some of Cortana’s “episodes,” I began expecting a psychologically driven science-fiction narrative reminiscent of 1960s- and '70s-era film. Admittedly, that might be a bit of a leap on my part, but I thought it would be an incredible new direction for the series. Unfortunately, her mental breakdown was somewhat exaggerated in the trailer. I never got the sense of extreme isolation or the genuine fear that I had hoped would be the core of the new game. Instead, we are only ever given a few outbursts and some forced, if heartfelt dialogue about the consequences of her gradual breakdown. At the end of the campaign, Cortana inadvertently sacrifices herself to help Master Chief survive. In so doing, any hopes of seeing the psychological horror story which I gleefully anticipated were dashed. Briefly. As I began reflecting upon the epilogue, I started wondering if Cortana’s death might begin to weigh on Master Chief. After all that has happened -- after all the destruction and death the Chief has caused -- it would be fascinating for the future of the series if, for once, he didn’t emerge from a challenge totally unaffected. 3. Narrative balance Critics have often accused Halo and pals of promoting the military industrial complex, of fomenting subconscious support for the expansion of the United States’ already robust military program. I’m not here to debate the legitimacy of that claim, but I do think that many modern shooters have neglected to accurately portray the horrors of violence. Call of Duty 4: Modern Warfare was an incredible departure from this trend. Many players will never forget the haunting post-nuke scene about halfway through the game. In it, the player is suddenly given control of a dying soldier and presumed protagonist, as he (i.e. the player) crawls around a burning, irradiated city. This scene is not only emotionally affecting, but it also gives context to the rest of the piece. The post-nuke chapter of the narrative frames the actions of all of the other characters in relation to the restoration of the geopolitical landscape. Halo 4 takes a few steps towards a proper theme, but stops short of delivering on its own promises. Unlike its predecessors, 343 attempts to capitalize on its established characters instead of forcing a melodramatic story about the defense of humanity. Master Chief’s primary goal -- at least for most of the game -- is restoration of Cortana, his partner. Their experiences together follow a theme of mutual trust and cooperation. For those who have played the previous games, the connection between Master Chief and Cortana is already understood, through both the mechanics and the narrative of each title. As such, when the player learns that she is danger, the writers are drawing upon an established relationship. This gives the conflict genuine weight for the player. Regrettably, around two thirds of the way through, the focus shifts from helping Cortana after all of the assistance she’s provided, to stopping a nigh omnipotent being from attacking Earth. The theme returns to incessant, high-stakes action, moving away from the more affecting story of Master Chief helping his partner. For Halo 5, I’d love to see a strong, character-driven story. I, as the Chief, have already saved humanity more times than I’d care to count, and that kind of grandiose adventure has lost its impact. 4. An emotionally vulnerable Chief As I mentioned earlier, Halo 4 has started asking bigger questions. “Is it moral to create people just for the sake of warfare?” “What does it mean to be human?” These questions, while important and valuable are, at times, incongruous with the gameplay itself. If we, the audience, begin reflecting upon the content, upon the narrative, and conclude that the actions the developers want us to take are not in line with our choices, we have no recourse. Halo’s gameplay in its current state can only be one thing -- reckless and violent. The argument could be made that up until this point -- Master Chief has never had any reason to question who he is, or why he acts in the manner that he does. Going forward, however, we know that simply isn’t the case. In the epilogue, Thomas Lasky directly asks Master Chief how he is handling the whole situation. If he remains unaffected, if he doesn’t change over time, then he either remains an inhuman, violent monster, or 343 will be passing up an excellent opportunity to use the universe they’ve inherited to accomplish something truly memorable. Ultimately, I’m glad to admit that I was wrong about the series. Halo 4 doesn’t fulfill every expectation, but if 343 uses it as a starting point, and continues to ask tough questions of its audience, I don’t doubt that the series will take several bold steps into truly subversive territory.
What I want from Halo 5 photo
And other reflections on the relationship of Chief and Cortana
I haven’t been a fan of Halo for years. By the time we were asked to “finish the fight,” I had grown sick of the monotony. Reach barely managed to hold my interest past the first half-hour. Everywhere I look...

Contest: Win a copy of The Art of Halo 4!

Nov 15 // mrandydixon
Notes about The Art of Halo 4 from the publisher: Awakening: The Art of Halo 4 is a very special collection of concept art, sketches, and artists’ commentary that highlights the imagination and creative vision of 343 Industries. From the expanses of the Forerunner shield world Requiem to the minutiae of the UNSC Battle Rifle, Awakening: The Art of Halo 4 reveals every spectacular element of the game. Experience the vastness of the UNSC Infinity—the largest and most powerful vessel ever employed by the UNSC—as it encounters the stranded Master Chief and Cortana. Take a first look at a new breed of super-soldier, the Spartan IV, and discover an array of Promethean enemies. This vital edition is a special look inside the creative process as 343 Industries’ expands the Halo universe with the characters, locations, and surprises of Halo 4. 
Master Chief has never looked so good
[Update: Contest closed! Winners are ttocs, EphemeralSynthesis, TurboKill, Dale and naveenwf . Please check your PMs if you haven't already!] Our buddies over at Titan Books have given us five copies of The Art...


Halo 4's Spartan Ops Episode 2 is now available

Eight more to go!
Nov 13
// Chris Carter
Yesterday, Episode 2 of Spartan Ops dropped instantly into Halo 4, which means it's available right now. Episode 1 is still a thing, so you don't have to worry about missing out. For those of you who are confused on what Spar...

Play Halo 4 with the Dtoid staff and community!

Join us for another awesome Xbox LIVE Community Playdate!
Nov 09
// mrandydixon
[Update: We're live RIGHT NOW! Hit us up on Xbox LIVE or watch us on Dtoid.TV!] Wanna play Halo 4? Of course you do! Wanna play Halo 4 with a bunch of awesome Dtoid staff and community members? Double of course you do! Well, ...

Friday Night Fights: HALO 4!!!

Game with the Destructoid community
Nov 09
// mrandydixon
Tonight's the night! Dtoid is hosting another Xbox LIVE Community Playdate, and this time we'll be kicking ass in Halo 4! Join myself, Director of Communications Hamza Aziz, Mash Tactics host King Foom, Contributing...

The DTOID Show: Wii U, Halo 4, Uncharted & Curiosity

What's in the cube?!
Nov 07
// Max Scoville
Tara's back on today's Destructoid Show! Aaaaaand considering the fact that yesterday was the Presidential election as well as the release of Halo 4, news is a bit on the slow side.  Speaking of Halo 4, that whole XBL se...

The Question: Is Halo 4 living up to the hype?

Sound off on one of 2012's biggest games!
Nov 07
// Jim Sterling
Today is sloooooow. It's the day after the US presidential elections, and the day after Halo 4 launched, so the game industry is busy sleeping off one heck of a late night. We're still here though, and today's the perfect tim...

Halo 4 will NOT be issuing special XBL bans for sexism

Racism and homophobia not given a looser leash either
Nov 06
// Jim Sterling
Last week, Halo 4 was at the center of a brouhaha with word that sexist behavior in Halo 4 online play would net the user a lifetime ban. While some folks applauded the measure, others asked why homophobic and racist activity...

Your guide to Halo 4's multiplayer

Nov 06 // Hamza CTZ Aziz
Loadout system Obviously the biggest change -- other than everyone having the ability to sprint -- is the fully fleshed-out loadout system. That's right, now in a Halo game will you be able decide exactly what you want to spawn into a map with. On top of the default loadouts that everyone can select from with each spawn, you have five custom slots that you can trick out and decide which primary and secondary weapons, grenade type, Armor Ability, tactical package, and support upgrade to equip your SPARTAN-IVs with. For your primary weapon, you can choose between the Assault Rifle, Battle Rifle, DMR, Storm Rifle, Covenant Carbine, Suppressor, and Lightrifle. For secondaries, you have the magnum, plasma pistol, and Boltshot. As for the grenade types, there's the trusty frag, the sticky plasma grenade, and the Promethean Pulse grenade. I'll expand more on all the weapons in the section below, but note that with the exception of the grenades, none of the primary and secondary weapons listed here spawn on the map at all in official game types. Armor Abilities Armor abilities are back, and there are eight in all: Jet Pack: Very small amount of time you can hover in the air, way shorter than what it was in Reach. Probably the weakest of the AA options. Hologram: One my favorites early on. Great way to trick enemies or to see if the coast is clear as it not only gives a visual cue, but it also appears on everyone's radar. Active Camouflage: Go invisible while standing still, or moving at a really slow pace. You gain some visibility if you move too fast. It no longer spoofs the radar -- instead, you see a few light-blue icons buzzing within the vicinity of where the invisible person is. Promethean Vision: Allows you to see enemy heat signature through hard surfaces. Very small use rate, but helpful to see what's just around the corner. Thruster Pack: Gives you a small burst of speed in whatever direction you're pointing at on the left stick. You don't gain a whole lot of distance though, and this seems to be the best used in the Flood gametype. Hardlight Shield: The evolution of Armor Lock. You generate a protective barrier of hard light in front of you, blocking attacks and bouncing off rockets. Still vulnerable from the sides or back. Autosentry: Produce a small sentry turret that hovers in the air and has an attack radio of 180 degrees from where it was spawned. Not the most powerful of attacks, but it's beneficial as cover fire, and helps weaken enemies' shields down when they're blindly rushing toward you. Especially great in objective gametypes. Regeneration Field: Releases a short-range energy field that heals up the player and teammates. Tactical Package and Support Upgrade These next two sections cover what can be equated to as Perks from the likes of Call of Duty. Once you've unlocked these features, you can equip one from each area on to your character. While it will make you think of CoD, these options are nowhere near as weighty. These mods are about making a difficult choice over stacking your character, and it's more about complementing different play styles out there. As it is, they're far from being game changers and they don't mess with the core experience. That said, it's still early on and it remains to be seen what things will be like when there are way more players out there in the higher levels using these perks.  Tactical Package consists of: Mobility: Gives unlimited sprint. Shielding: Speeds up your armor's energy shield recharge rate. Resupply: Allows you to pick up grenades from fallen players. AA Efficiency: Increases the recharge rate for AA. Grenadier: Lets you spawn with more grenades than usual. Firepower: Lets you use a primary weapon for your secondary weapon slot. Fast Track: Allows you to advance in rank quicker. Requisition: Lets players choice a new set of choices when an ordnance is called in. Wheelman: Increase the long term durability of your vehicle and how it reacts to EMP charges. Support Upgrades consist of: Ammo: Increases ammo capacity for both starting weapons and ordnance drops. Dexterity: Speeds up reloads and weapon swapping. Sensor: Increases motion sensor range. Awareness: You can see your motion radar while scoped in with a gun. Explosives: Increases blast radius of grenades and decreases the damage received. Ordnance Priority: Ordnance Priority offers more frequent ordnance drops to user. Stability: Steadies your weapon while being struck by incoming fire. Gunner: Increases how long before a mounted gun overheats and increases movement speed with detached turrets. Stealth: Dampens your footsteps, makes you harder to see on Promethean Vision, and increases your assassination speed. Nemesis: Marks enemy responsible for your last death. Drop Recon: Calls out ordnance drops in advance. Ranking up When you begin Halo 4, everything is locked with the multiplayer's loadout system and you'll first need to increase your Spartan Rank. There are multiple ways to rank up, with the core being the better you are in multiplayer, the faster you'll gain experience points. The progression system between Spartan Ops and War Games is linked as well, so completing the weekly episodic missions will help raise your rank. Like the multiplayer, the better you do against the AI, the better your results will be overall. And of course there are the daily, weekly, and now monthly challenges you can partake in to give yourself some rank boosts. You can now create custom challenges yourself too! You'll be able to make up challenges through Halo Waypoint, and people can even subscribe to your challenge feed. 343 will be monitoring this of course, as they don't want people abusing the system to make players rank up way faster than they should. Lastly, (as of the time of this writing at least) you can go stuff your face full with piles and piles of Doritos or Mountain Dew and use the XP codes to rank up faster. Side effects include the early onset of type II diabetes, and gross, grease-stained Xbox 360 controllers. Spartan Points Like I said, you'll unlock stuff as you progress, but there's a catch. What you're unlocking is the right to purchase equipment. You're earning money called Spartan Points as you raise your Spartan Rank, and those points go to being able to purchase weapons and abilities. One of the very first things you unlock are the Battle Rifle and DMR, but you're not being given both guns. Rather, you have to buy one of the guns with Spartan Points. Everything has different costs, and eventually you'll have earned enough money to buy everything.  There's a bunch of cosmetic items you'll be able to get too, and all of that content is just gated by your rank, meaning you won't have to spend any of your points for it. There's a staggering amount of different armor and emblems available for player, all of which can be mixed and matched. Ordnance Drops Another big change to Halo multiplayer is the way the weapon spawns work. At the start of the match, you'll be able to see on your HUD what exact weapon is available and where it's located on the map. More weapons will eventually drop in, and they typically consist of the higher-tier power weapons. There's a different rotation of weapons that spawn in, and it scales based on what the map is. For instance, you can expect the Spartan Laser when it's a map full of vehicles. On top of map-specific ordnance system are personal ordnance system where players can summon a weapons drop. Players are earning points on top of the points dedicated to the scoreboard, and those points go towards filling up a meter. Once that meter is filled, you'll have the option to call in either more grenades, a new powerful weapon, or a player trait power-up that consist of either a shield, damage, or speed boost. Players that are doing exceptionally well should be able to call in around three ordnance drops on average. Weapons On the human side, you have the magnum, Assault Rifle, Battle Rifle, DMR, shotgun, sniper rifle, rocket launcher, Sticky Detonator, SAW, Railgun, Spartan Laser, and frag grenades. The Sticky Detonator is essentially a mini-grenade launcher that will stick to any surface. Once stuck, you just need to pull the trigger again to detonate. It's a very hard weapon to aim precisely, but worth if for the punch it packs. The SAW is a machine gun with a high rate of fire, and will shred anyone up very quickly. The Railgun packs the punch of the rocket launcher, but you need to hold down the trigger to charge it up first before firing. The really important weapons are the Assault Rifle, Battle Rifle, and DMR since those are the main loudout weaponry you'll get starting off. Both the AR and DMR have bloom, which means that the faster you shoot the gun the less accurate it is. Don't let that scare you -- bloom has been tuned down dramatically here. It's not as bad as it was in Reach before the title update. With the AR, best practice is to feather the trigger so you shoot in bursts at targets in a medium distance. Of course, do hold the trigger down when targets are in close range. The DMR is a deadly beast, and a few well placed head shots will take enemies down. It's a great long-range weapon, and pretty effective at medium range. There's no recoil either, so I wouldn't recommend scoping unless it's a long-distance target. With the Battle Rifle, it's a three-round burst that doesn't factor in bloom but it does have a little more spread to it. The main drawback with the gun is that it recoils so you have to be constantly adjusting your aim as you fire. On the Covenant side, you have the Plasma Pistol, Storm Rifle, Covenant Carbine, Needler, Beam Rifle, Energy Sword, Fuel Rod Cannon, Gravity Hammer, Concussion Rifle, and plasma grenades. All the guns are pretty parallel to the human weapons for the most part, but I've found myself largely sticking to the human weapons. The biggest change with any of them is the Plasma Pistol, as it has less ammo, eats up energy faster when you hold down the trigger, and it's harder to track targets now too. The Promethean weapons consist of the Boltshot, Lightrifle, Suppressor, Scattershot, Binary Rifle, Incineration Cannon, and Pulse Grenade. The Boltshot is like a pistol, and it's secondary lets you hold down the trigger to build up a shotgun-like blast. The Lightrifle, is a mix between the BR and DMR, as it fires three-rounds normally, or one shot when you're scoped in. The Binary Rifle and Incineration Cannon are both powerful sniper rifles and rocket launchers, respectively, but they have very small rounds and take a bit to reload. Lastly on the weapon front is the trusty melee attack. Bleed through is back, so the damage you inflict when there's still some shielding left on someone carries over, taking out the remaining shielding plus inflicting some serious pain. You can't simply rush towards a player anymore though, as you will be slowed down slightly when taking enemy fire. Plus, melee doesn't really have big reach anymore. Melee hits to someone's back is an insta-kill of course, and holding down the melee when striking someone from the back will see your character perform a cool assassination attack. You are vulnerable while doing an assassination since you can't break from the animation. Vehicles Warthogs with the chaingun, rocket launchers, and Gauss are all back, as are the Scorpion, Ghost, Wraith, and Banshee. Vehicles have a little more health to them compared to Reach, but they can all still be taken out fast with a coordinated focused attack by a team. The newest addition to the vehicles is the Mantis, a walking bi-pedal mech that has a powerful stomp attack, chaingun, and a five barreled rocket launcher. It also has it's own shielding system, but it takes a long time before it recharges. Vehicles are only as good as the team you're on, and a well communicated team will have designated players that support vehicles by nabbing all the power weapons before the other team. Maps & Modes There are 13 maps on disc, but only 10 will be used in the official game matches at first. The three other maps are all Forge World locations, and will eventually get rotated in. There are also only nine game modes to play on, but like the Forge maps, more modes will be added over time. In terms of straight up deathmatch style games, there's Infinity Slayer, Big Team Infinity Slayer,  and Team Slayer Pro. The main difference here, besides the player capacity, is that Team Slayer Pro doesn't allow the use of personal ordnance drops. There are some other restrictions with Pro mode too, such as no radar, and a set loadout system that's equal for everyone. Regicide also falls under the deathmatch category, and is a six player free for all mode. The twist here is that the player with the most kills is the King, and the more kills the King gets the higher his bounty increases. The King will also be given random bonuses based on how long they've held the crown, and all the other players can see where the King is at all times on their HUD and radar. Objective modes consist of Flood, Capture the Flag, Oddball, and King of the Hill. Dominion sees teams of six vs six capturing and fortifying three different bases on the map. The longer a team holds a base, the more perks they're granted such as auto cannons, vehicles, and weapon resupplies. If one team manages to capture all three bases, the opposite team will then all be marked on the radar/HUD, and won't be able to respawn. The opposing team must recapture at least one base to be able to respawn back in, plus they're all given overshields during this period.  Capture the Flag has changed so that the flag carrier can wield a more powerful magnum at the same time. The biggest catch now is that everyone can see where both flags are at all time. No more sneaking around! With Oddball, and Grifball, players can now toss the ball to pass to other teammates. Flood (previously known as Infection) sees a team of humans surviving against players infested as the Flood. King of the Hill is largely the same as it was before. Matchmaking The last thing to touch on is the matchmaking in that you're now able to join matches in progress. No longer do you have to wait ridiculously long to get a match going, nor will you be stuck on an uneven team getting decimated by the fully stacked team. Questions? So there's your simple little look at all the major elements of multiplayer. There's a lot to talk about though, so if you have any questions just leave them in the comments and I'll jump in with answers! Otherwise let's play a round. My Gamertag is Dtoid CTZ.
Halo 4 Guide photo
All the new things you should know
Halo 4 is officially out today and a lot has changed about the game now that it's in the safe hands of 343 Industries. Go read our review to learn what's new and improved! Multiplayer especially has seen a dramatic overhaul, ...


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