I’ve been a Halo fan for a number of years, and I think Halo 4’s multiplayer is beautifully crafted. My experiences with Halo 3 and Halo: Reach in particular gave me a clear picture on how I believe the franchise's multiplayer should be designed.
With that said, I’ve found several multiplayer changes in Halo 4 that are bothersome.
Issue one centers on the sniper rifle. It is easily my favorite weapon in the series, and it requires an arguable amount of skill and luck to master (at least for one-shot kills). Developer 343 Industries drastically diminished its usefulness in this latest release.
Damage and accuracy remain the same, but weapon bloom, introduced in Reach, has returned. The feature is now more intense, proving to be a bigger annoyance than before. You fire a shot at an enemy, and your reticle blooms, and the hostile runs away.
This is not the sniper rifle I remember. It is a slow-firing variant, one that forces gamers to play cautiously and camp out more frequently.
Grenades. Were they too weak in Halo 3? Were they too strong in Reach? 343's solution to find a middle ground between those entries with Halo 4 does not address the larger concern.
The frag grenades are used primarily to finish enemies off or slightly hurt them. For those of you who have gotten comfortable with the frags as a primary source to deal damage, you’ll have to devise whole new tactics.
What about plasma grenades? You know, those classic weapons that show players how fun it is to humiliate their enemies by sticking them? While you might see them in the multiplayer maps, they have become difficult to find. I had to use the new "ordinance drop" feature to acquire them consistently.
Pulse grenades are interesting since they create dark, orange holes that damage enemies who touch them. While effective in the main campaign, I’m still not convinced they are a viable multiplayer option.
My absolute least favorite thing about Halo 4’s Multiplayer is the addition of default sprint
Yes, I understand that sprinting makes the game faster, but it changes the flow of the combat. Not only does an enemy have an armor ability, but now I have to worry about that enemy chasing me. I like what Reach did. It let you make sprint an armor ability and not something that everyone has by default.
Although Halo 4's multiplayer is extremely well designed, it is not perfect. The small changes affect the title's pace in a big way. Are the changes for better or worse? The community will decide.
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