MiniReview: Halo: Anniversary

Halo: Anniversary starts the Halo universe all over again, but this time, using today’s graphics engine. While the Halo franchise became a massive success with 2nd and 3rd editions,...

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Halo: Anniversary starts the Halo universe all over again, but this time, using today’s graphics engine. While the Halo franchise became a massive success with 2nd and 3rd editions, only the most hardcore Halo fans were there from the beginning with the original Xbox.

Halo Anniversary is the Halo we all know and love, but delivered in high definition with a current generation lighting and graphics engine. What a massive difference 10 years makes in video games. One of the best things to enjoy in the game is to switch between the original and current game engines.

That’s right, Halo Anniversary includes both game engines, to switch between the two just take a press of the Back button and a second to refresh. The difference is dramatic. Textures quality, polygon count, lighting effects, shadows, reflections, animations – everything is dramatically better.

Of course jumping 10 years is a massive leap, but what about the difference between Halo Anniversary and Halo: Reach? The answer, not a lot. At least not visually.

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Original engine.

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New engine

Single Player Campaign
The story begins from the very beginning, the start of Halo, where you begin with a calibration of the Spartan suit. This also doubles as a ‘how to’ tutorial and configures settings like look inversion. No matter where your Halo experience began, Halo Anniversary allows you to see the story unfold from the beginning.

Multiplayer
The best of the best multiplayer levels have been included in this release, along with a few new ones just for Anniversary. All of your favourite maps from across the Halo series are on offer. While everyone has their favourites, there are maps that rise to the top, working better in multiplayer matches and naturally become hits amongst the Halo community.

Kinect Support
Voice commands for games seems like the new flavour of the day, so get used to it now. Halo Anniversary actually uses voice in a pretty compelling way. There’s a plethora of commands available, everything from “change weapon”, to “reload”. Good news for Aussie’s, there is Australian voice support to cater for our accent (no bogan slang).

Windows Phone 7.5 integration
Those WP7 owners running Mango will be able to get an updated Halo Waypoint app on their phone. This can be used to intergrate with the Halo Anniversary game, get to know map layouts, weapon locations and even watch your team locations live on the device.

Overall
If you’ve never played Halo before, then this is definitely the game for you. If you already own every copy of Halo, then it’s hard to say this is a must-have for you, other than to complete your collection. There’s always new achievements to go after, so if that stat demon inside of you just begs for more, then you should also get the game.

Availability and Price
Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary release date is November 15th, 2011 and will cost A$69.95 RRP.

Categories
GamingReviewsXbox 360

Creator of techAU, Jason has spent the dozen+ years covering technology in Australia and around the world. Bringing a background in multimedia and passion for technology to the job, Cartwright delivers detailed product reviews, event coverage and industry news on a daily basis.