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Another bad review at toms, Halo

Last response: in Video Games
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October 11, 2003 4:02:50 PM

The halo review here touched on all the good points quite well, and it had many since it was a good game. But they didnt mention how poorly the game runs, or any of the technical problems. First of all you CANT run FSAA unless you remove all the pixel shader effects and they dont want you doing that so you need to alter the config.txt to do it, I doubt the reviewer even knew this by the way talked in the review. This game is only payable at 800x600 on my 2400+ 9700pro a7n8x system and thats with full effects and NO fsaa. Once you turn off the effects by altering the cfg file the game becomes playable at 1280x1024 for me with fsaa turned on. There serveral other very annoying bugs i came accross aswell, one that would delete you save game every time if you ran the timedemo for instance.
This is a poorly done port and these issues with the pixel shading ruin a good game. There are no other games i know of that dont allow pixel shading and FSAA at the same time and playing a game without FSAA is torture on the eyes in this day and age. I think they just saw a quick buck to be made with this port and didnt really care about much as long as it ran it seems.

Sex is like a card game, if you dont have a good partner you had better have a good hand.

More about : bad review toms halo

October 11, 2003 5:07:18 PM

There's not much to say, other than whoever reviewed Halo here has <i>never</i> played anything with <b>Unreal</b> in the title.

I want to die in my sleep like my grandfather, not yelling and screaming like the people in the back seat of his car.
October 11, 2003 7:32:07 PM

That doesn't necessarily make it a bad review. Yes, it may have its problems, but what game doesn't? With everything taken into consideration, it's still damn fine game.

<font color=blue>"Some people believe football is a matter of life and death. I'm very disappointed with that attitude. I can assure you it is much, much more important than that" - Bill Shankly</font color=blue>
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October 11, 2003 9:09:31 PM

I have to agree with bloaty
Even though I havn't get to play Halo yet. A review should
cover more than just the goodies, it should also report the
problems as well. Or it only deserve to be called an AD not
a REVIEW.

Trix are <font color=red>NOT JUST</font color=red> for kids
October 11, 2003 10:15:20 PM

I don't think the guy that wrote this review has played any other games, period.

Quote:
To make the game experience even more epic, there are little titles that appear at the bottom of the screen each time you reach a new part of the storyline. This makes the game experience so much more in-depth. To add to this, humor is thrown into the titles that show up on your screen. For example: when riding a lift up to a different part of a level, the title reads "But I don't wanna ride the elevator!" Another one of my favorites is from a level where you have to blow something up, and the title is: "Light fuse... and run!" These titles give you something to look forward to, since they only show up once in a while. But because they only show up once in a while, they're much more entertaining. Overall, I don't think that the storyline could be much better; it's so good already. But as I said, I don't want to ruin the best parts; besides, it's much more fun to find out for yourself what I'm talking about.


Please don't review another game, ever. Thank you.
October 11, 2003 10:42:12 PM

The worst part is that he said that Gearbox had outdone themselves. Bull$hit!!! I love Xbox HALO. I bought PC HALO and how can you say they've outdone themselves when the Mulit-player is significantly worse then the original.

I have hope that it will be fixed soon, but I'm disapointed with gearbox for releasing a partialy completed game before its ready... just so they can steal my $54.00
October 12, 2003 12:10:33 AM

I haven't yet seen a good game review on this site. They're very good at benchmarking games, but the reviews just seem to be written by people who stopped gaming when the N64 was new. Personally I think they should leave the game reviews to the many sites who do them earlier, and better. It is Tom's HARDWARE Guide, after all.

On the other hand, I have to disagree with everybody that's been slagging the game off. I ran it at 1280x960 with about 40 fps, which seemed just fine to me (it dipped significantly in just one room); and keep in mind that it originally ran at 640x480 at 30 fps on a previous DirectX version. Sure, my machine's high end, but so what? There are high-end games and low-end games, that's just the way it is in the PC industry. Some games cater for people who want to be able to play on their three-year old machine, and some games cater for those who want cutting-edge technology and aren't averse to paying for it. Both are equally valid and important.

That's why we have minimum and recommended specs on game boxes. If a game says that it needs a 3-gig processor, 2 gigs of ram and a 256-meg 400MHz DX9 card, and it doesn't run well on your year-old Dell laptop, that's no slight against the game.

Personally, I think we should put less effort into slagging off game makers for games that run poorly, and more effort into persuading them to put *realistic* specs on the back of the boxes. If you need a 1.5GHz processor and a high-end DX9 card to get 30fps, don't put "Pentium 3 600MHz and Geforce 4" as your minimum requirements.

Yeah I know, I've gone a little off topic. I'm tired. Don't read it if you don't want to :p 
October 12, 2003 4:54:18 AM

Im appaled at the sheer amount of computer power you need to make HALOpc run properly, if a 700Mhz celeron can do it, why does my 900Mhz duron stutter?
and lets not get onto graphics, I know my MX440 is inadaquate to the task, But I would expect better results, especially when the ground becomes UNTEXTURED!
Why is no mention made of the fact that it plays AWEFULLY on mid range machines, and poorly on good ones?
October 12, 2003 5:11:55 AM

It plays fine on my rig, but I don't understand what's so special about it. What is dx9? What makes it better than say an awesome looking and playing game like Serious Sam?

_________________________________________
<font color=red>12 bit... The way games are meant to be played!</font color=red>
October 12, 2003 12:38:12 PM

The best things about Halo, in my opinion, are gameplay features, not graphics. It looks good, but not as good as things that were designed with DX9 in mind from the outset.

What makes it great is the vehicle support. Especially in multiplayer, there hasn't been a game with support for vehicles that worked this well. The banshees are the easiest flying machines to control I've ever seen in a game; the ghosts are fantastic fun, making up for their low firepower with speed and maneuvrability, in direct contrast to the tanks; and the warthogs work great with three players in them, giving everybody a chance to be equally useful to the team.

In single player, the enemies react really well. Halo's been compared to Serious Sam, but where it differs is the AI; sure, the zombies just run right at you, but then, they're zombies... the Covenant on the other hand are intelligent and tactical. If you slaughter half of a group, the little guys will run away in fear. If they can, a group will encircle you to attack from all sides. When you throw a sticky (plasma) grenade at somebody, all his so-called friends will run away from him as he begs them to "get it offa me!"

I've seen better AI in NOLF and the original UT, but even so, it's rare. Any game which tries to go that extra mile with AI should be praised, especially if it gets it right, as Bungie have.
October 12, 2003 6:20:09 PM

Makes you wonder if THG is getting sponsored... which would suck. The whole reason I ever started coming here was because they weren't.
October 13, 2003 3:19:23 PM

I agree. I have a similar system and I had to turn it down to 800x600 to get it playable. Whoever reviewed this game must have been payed off or have really low standards.

<b>Only in America would a drive-up ATM have brail numbers.</b>
October 14, 2003 4:53:05 PM

Am I the only one that thought the levels were EXTREMELY repetitive?? Especially the interior ones. God it was like it was never gonna end, and I felt as if I were running around in circles.

Oh yeh, I agree with the chap that said Toms is a hardware site, not a games site. I've never read a decent review on a game here.

<font color=red> "It is a good thing for an uneducated man to read books of quotations." - Sir Winston Churchill </font color=red>
October 17, 2003 1:35:52 PM

I completely agree with Astro_G here. I don't just think that it's Tom's Hardware to blame on this, though. I think that any review of a cutting-edge computer game deserves a mention of how it runs on slower systems. I have a system that's a year old with a 512MB of memory, a Pentium 4 2.4Ghz and a GF 4 4200 and I have no idea 90% of the time how any of the new releases would run. All I see are DX9 screenshots.

I know many of these titles (Half-Life 2, Max Payne 2, etc.) are used to show off new cards, but for those of us who can't up our new systems every 6 months, it'd be nice to know how they'd look/handle on our systems.

How about a few of these game testers take a test run (w/screenshots) using the game's 'Minimum requirements'? Now THAT would be a review. Get a couple of mainstream sites like Gamespot.

<P ID="edit"><FONT SIZE=-1><EM>Edited by cauldar1971 on 10/17/03 02:02 PM.</EM></FONT></P>
October 20, 2003 9:48:06 PM

Well, I also think that THG overrated Halo …at most, I'd rate it a 6.5 out of 10

The single player portion of Halo is very good, but not great. This is a three-year-old game that is an X-Box to PC port. I don’t have a problem with ports, but three years after its release is way too long and a >$50.00 dollar price tag is way too much. As for the AI that everyone raves about, I find it to be good and its better than most single player games; however, there is a significant amount of predictability still associated with single player enemy characters, and the teammate AI appears to have an affinity for suicide. On the DX-9 implementation, I think it was unnecessary and didn’t add significantly to the game. Also, it appears that the DX-9 shaders have resulted in more problems that Bungie or Gearbox would care to admit.

IMO, the multiplayer portion of Halo is nothing but a prettier version of Tribes2. Compared to other multiplayer games, Halo is severely lacking in its net-code, user interface, and game play. Aslo, when looking at many of today’s multiplayer games, Halo is sub par. Personally, I would have preferred a cooperative multiplayer scheme and think this game is ideal suited for cooperative game play.

Here’s how I scored it:

Starting out with a perfect score of 10 and subtracting on obvious problems

1. Price -½
2. A three year port -½
3. DX implementation -½
4. Multiplayer -2

Sum = -3½

Total Score 10 - 3½ = 6½
!