back to article Halo 3 packaging in disk-scratch rumpus

Microsoft's überhyped launch of the (keenly-anticipated, long-awaited, etc, etc) Halo 3 has suffered a bit of a wobble after fans quickly discovered the limited edition packing could scratch the game disks. According to AP, within hours of the game's debut, the blogosphere was abuzz with the shock news that both the game and " …


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  1. TLA

    Is it just me or... HALO just very bland?

    I dont understand what the fuss is about, guns, endless corridors and enemies to shoot.

    Just my $0.02

  2. Jeremy

    Re: Is it just me or...

    First one was great... Some bits of 2 were good but the latter levels were a bit... uninspiring. Third one? I doubt it'll be as great as people hope...

    BTW, do we have to have the word 'blogosphere' on El Reg? Please no......

  3. Bob Barker

    Join the club

    I've been playing FPSs since Doom and the sorts and must say, Halo doesnt add anything special in the genre. Only reason its so famous is cuz it came packed with the first Xboxs that were released. Games like Unreal Tournament, Quake, Bioshock etc keep adding more to genre or have such intense multiplayer that you can actually say that they've added something to the industry. But Halo? Not so

  4. Scottie Taylor


    Halo really isn't that great. It's more atypical uberwanking FPS characters. The only reason I'm getting the third one is to finish the story for me. Granted, I could probably wait a week and read it for myself, but I'd rather play it through to see it first hand.

    As for other great FPS that have added shit to the genre that Halo hasn't. Deus Ex. Deus Multi-ending, insanely immense, find new shit every time you play through it Ex. I loved that game. Favorite FPS by far. Shame Invisible War sucked. But it had an awesome soundtrack courtesy of Kidney Thieves so that made up for it.

    But yes, Halo isn't that great but it's still a fun playthrough regardless. I liked Gears of War better though

  5. Jack Prichard

    Re: Is it just me or...

    I would say that as a FPS Halo didn't add much. In fact as an expression of the genre I would say it took some stuff away in that being on a console made the controls very unresponsive for anyone who had learned to play on a PC with a mouse and keyboard.

    The reason Halo is "important" (in the context of this discussion) is that by being on a console it changed FPS games from something "geeks" played into something "normal people" enjoyed as well. The much chased "cross-over" appeal. Lots of "normal people" knew what Doom was, some had even played it but few who didn't know how to change the CPU on their desk top had finished it.

    Halo changed that. Not by been the greatest game ever, not by bringing any amazing new things to gaming, I would say the attempt to do Resident Evil as a combination light gun/FPS was revolutionary and it flopped. No, Halo changed things by being plug and play on a new must have console and by being backed up with enough marketing grunt to make it sell. This meant a lot of people who had not played and FPS were now buring the midnight oil to finish one.

    The rest is on Wikipedia.

    That's my $2.50


  6. Costa Mihalidis

    Just done well

    True - Halo3 is nothing revolutionary in terms of game play,

    its just a plain FPS shooter, but its rather well done.

    Nice graphics, nice sound, storyline isn't bad

    the editor is cool

    And about the hype - who's to blame, honestly, your average gamer drooling all over this title or MS trying to make a buck??

    If i was MS i'd hype it, and as has become apparent they indeed managed to make a nice mountain of cash on the first day

    PS, can somebody tell me why games for consoles are so freakin' expensive compared to PC?? i mean come on.. 60 bucks for a game.. gimme a break..

    PC games rarely exceed 40 bucks and they're usually on par with console games

  7. AndyB

    Re: Is it just me or...

    No, its not just you.

    Another FPS

    Y A W N


  8. Dam

    Rofl legendary ?

    OMG... Errrr anyone else?

    "Legendary edition complete with helmet blablbla"

    /care ?

    130-70=60 dollars for a helmet ?

    They've invented a new game boxin -Dummies Counter Edition- :

    They count how many they've sold and they get an estimate of how many people will buy Vista2...

  9. Ryan Barrett

    Halo's excellent

    I guess some people don't know a good FPS when it hits them on the head.

    Halo is a very good game, the best in its generation. It makes PC most PC FPS (including HL2) feel like, well, toys. Why? Because it has an incredible sense of realism. When you turn, it's not instant. You don't glide along the ground as you run. You don't have any really crazy weapons. They even included the UI configuration as part of the game experience itself.

    The AI in the game is also good. At the highest difficulty level this really comes into its own - not only are the enemies crack shots but they're also bright enough to dive for cover when you've got them under heavy fire.

    It's also well balanced - all of the weapons have a use, and the effectiveness changes depending on the difficulty level. Most of the levels (a certain latter one excluded) are also really well designed.

    Oh, and unlike some recent console FPS (Bioshock), you have some choice over control schemes - you're not forced to try and play with a controller setup which is impossible for you, just because the developers are too lazy to implement an options screen.

    What Halo did was perfected the whole experience and balance. Non of the innovations (clever-seeming enemies, shield-system, realistic controls, excellent balance) are so immediately obvious. They're so right that it feels like they were always there in FPSes.

    Before playing Halo I was a massive Half Life fan. I was of the opinion that you couldn't do a shooter on a console. Halo changed that, to the point of reversing my opinion - in the most common configuration the PC really isn't the best format for consoles.(kb/mouse kill atmosphere, and most people don't have their PC in their home cinema system).

  10. Jim Cosser

    Xbox or Covers?

    Wasn't there a story of the console itself eating discs for breakfast? I guess microsoft don't want you to have your games for too long.

    I have to agree with Scottie Halo is bland and Deus Ex was an amazing game.

  11. Mark SPLINTER

    Halo 1 thru 8, the future of the world

  12. Karl Lattimer

    Halo brand

    I honestly can't understand the exercise of pimping up the halo brand. Of all the gamers I know I don't actually know a single one who plays halo. Most people are interested in games which actually have something going for them, some innovation, outstanding online game play. and BFGs.

    I played the first game on mac, and was so bored with the plot that I actually spent most of the time finding interesting ways to kill myself. As is usually the way with microsoft products.

  13. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Halo limited disk-readability edition

    I concur with the points already made, Halo really isn't that great. It does have a great musical score, it is well polished in QA terms and the storyline is above average (which considering computer games hardly makes it Marquez). Given as much of Halo 3 as I have played so far, it is on par with 2nd game - just prettier and on an xbox that sounds like it runs on diesel. Bioshock beats it hands-down in almost every aspect. Halo 3 will pay its dividends in online play, until I get too fed up of 12 year old American kids calling me a faggot.

  14. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Blando perhaps

    Think you are forgetting that a huge proportion of games of Halo buy it for its online Multiplayer options (which are vast this time round)

    The single player is same old really, but you can't knock its online features.

  15. Simon

    Until 31st ?!?

    How is that legal? Surely if the disk is damaged the customer is entitled to a free replacement.

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Almost perfect, not bland

    The first Halo was almost the perfect first-person-shooter. It had canny AI, perfectly balanced weaponry, and beautifully crafted levels. Its about quality, not novelty. The love and attention to detail that went into the game shone through from almost every aspect of it. It wasn't perfect, but it was a classic of a game. Its this quality that built the Halo brand, its release timing was just a happy coincidence for Microsoft and the XBox. Halo 2 was nowhere near the quality of the first, but initial reviews of Halo 3 seem to suggest they are back on form.

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    " HALO just very bland?"

    It's not just you.

    Played the original Halo on the Xbox, never bothered with Halo 2, and won't buy Halo 3 'cos I've got a PS2 and not a 360 :-) "Bland" wouldn't even begin to describe how I found it.

    But really, the last thing the world needs is another bloody FPS - the glut of crappy first-person shooters is the reason I ditched my Xbox, although I admit that I do still miss 'Forza Motorsport' ...

  18. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    My only experience of playing Halo was from the PC version.

    Due to the lag between its "exclusive" launch for the Xbox (thanks to M$ hijacking Bungee) and its release for the PC, by the time I got my mitts on it it had been superseded.

  19. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Time to bring out the crazies

    Actually, the best FPS coming up if Frontlines - same environment-destruction as Crysis apparently, but with Battlefield-style squad management and the notion of war front implemented in a much better fashion than the Battlefield series.

    Plus, there's plenty of bots to manage !

  20. Scott Mckenzie


    ...i've never got over the lack of mouse/keyboard etc for an FPS on a console....

    I don't enjoy trying to play them with a gamepad, maybe i just need more practice though!

  21. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: Halo's excellent - Ryan Barrett

    You forgot to sign off your post with "Uber Halo Fanboy"!

    How you can criticise the controls on Bioshock is beyond me. The control scheme in BIoshock is spot on for the game, how else would you easily switch between plasmids and weapons other than how they configured it.

    Halo 3 adds nothing to the genere, if you read all of the reviews they all say that it is essentially more of the same, average graphics and average story. They all then give it 10/10 but I guess they are all fan boys as well. Enemies that hide? That has been around for a while...

    Mass Effect is the next game I am waiting for, it is going to be way superior to Halo in every way.

  22. Andrew

    Sorry but

    Halo has nothing over Half life!

    No realism or lack of?!? toys!?

    Now lets not turn this into a fanboy flaming match

    but ive played both and i rate HL far above Halo

    Imo FPS are still a PC kb/mouse affair :)

    Halo is a good FPS, dont get me wrong, but its been overhyped so far its untrue!

  23. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  24. Simon


    Sure Halo is good, i've had a lot of entertainment fragging the Flood and Covernent on my own and with friends but better than Bioshock? Because you can't change the control system? Play it on the PC you can change the keys to your hearts content! And as for best FPS of the year, it might not be out yet but i have one word for you...


  25. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Master Chef?

    Tell me again why I'm playing a cook?

  26. This post has been deleted by a moderator

  27. Klaus


    I played HALO on PC and then tried on the console. It felt so slow and unresponsive it was like playing in molasses. I think I'll stick to the keyboard/mouse combo....

  28. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    The point

    about Halo is supposed to be the "immersive multiplayer community experience", at least that's what I read. What I also sometimes read are the comments of the Halo clientele on places like engadget - and honestly, reading them, that's the kind of community experience I ususally try to avoid. It seems that half of them are not even literate. To me, Halo is pretty much the Michael Bay movie of games. Lots of glitz, little substance.

  29. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    @Ryan Barrett is spot on..

    making the points I was going to make. What he fails to mention however is the online aspect. Halo (2especially) was streets ahead of anything else in the console market at the time, about 2 years ago. Whilst this is not so true now, the new version has features that blows the socks off online components of other games.

    Yeah, I'm getting tired of generic FPS as much as the next person but online the its simply great fun/well balanced/endless customisation.

    Offline the enemy AI beats all comers.

  30. Ryan Barrett

    Re: Re: Halo's excellent - Ryan Barrett (Neil Weller)

    The control scheme in Bioshock may well be perfect for righthanders, however it's completely broken for lefties who're used to playing in their natural position. All because the developers were too lazy to let you switch thumbsticks.

    For those gamers (i.e. the 90% of lefties who aim with their left thumb), it's unplayable.

    All for the cost of, at worst, adding an option in an ini file.

    My love for Halo is that the whole experience on a console is more immersive than that on a PC. It's not ruined by the uberfast movement you get on PCFPS, or the fact that you're playing it behind a desk on a small screen.

    Online is a different matter. I prefer Counterstrike on PC, as it's a better and it's easier to miss the annoying kids. However lots of Halo players rate the online highly.

    I can also understand the underwhelmed feeling players get playing Halo on Normal/Heroic. Although it's good on those modes, it only comes into its own when played through on Legendary. That is where the quality really shines through.

    Maybe I'm the only PCFPS player who enjoys playing with his head more than he enjoys playing with his reaction times?

  31. bluesxman

    @ Jeremy (re: blogosphere)

    Perhaps we should get in touch with people via their mobys, such that they might use their lappys to join a webinar about use of reprehensible terms such as "blogosphere" on El Reg.

    Ugh, I need a bath after that. Unclean. UNCLEAN!

  32. Konstantinos

    O Mi Gi

    Is it just me or... the european version of the legendary product is waaaaaaaaaay overpriced??? price..

    Gamestop price..

    i just said loud WTF.

  33. AndyB


    @Ryan Barrett

    "I guess some people don't know a good FPS when it hits them on the head"

    Replace "FPS" in the above sentence with:

    Reality TV show.

    Episode of Eastenders.



    PC World deal.

    Dog turd.

    Get the picture?

  34. The Avangelist

    Halo is the equivalent of buying a Ferrari.

    You can't afford your own jet and made the mistake of already buying a crap garage instead of an air strip.

    Thus you get whatever you can to compensate for the pebble dashed driveway you had put in when you really wanted antique brick work with a good wholesome grass border trimmed to perfection.

    And for those not too great with metaphore, Halo will sell well because the console genre is dated and always has been.

    With a lack of compelling titles and the inability to upgrade components, it is for those who are too slow to accept/realise that a PC is the way forward for fps gaming and have never played Counter Strike/HL/HL2.

  35. Jason


    Halos AI isn't overly brilliant, sure, the enemies hide when you shoot at them, but that's pretty standard nowadays, there's no sense of the enemies working tactically against you.

    For some excellent AI check out Brothers in arms and F.E.A.R. In both games the enemies will actively attempt to flank you, and recognise when you are doing it to them, and react accordingly. There's been so many times in those games that I've moved to attack an enemy on his flank only to get filled with lead from behind. In F.E.A.R moreso, I often find myself having to fall back through the level as the enemies attack you aggresively, but not stupidly, they move in pairs so you can't just pick them off, and always laydown cover fire for each other.

    F.E.A.R also has a much better atmosphere than Halo, it is a genuinely scary game!

  36. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Halo didnt add much to the market at all. Its just a generi FPS that was released as the first Xbox game and hence, was in every house that had an xbox. As for its quality, its nowhere near where its competitors are. The first one can be considered a good game, but every iteration after that is purely regurgitated Bungie cr@p.

    I've marathoned through Halo 3 and must say, I've got a weird leftover taste in my mouth (puns ahoy!). Frankly, the best FPS that I've played in a while is one that came pre-packaged with the 360. Yes, Im talking about Gears of War. It has the Halo series beat on pretty much every accord. However, it doesnt have vehicles which means during multiplayer, its lacking.

    But we all know that one of the kings of multiplayer will be out with a game soon anyways; UnrealTournament 2007!

  37. Law

    Halo's alright.... but nothing special

    Yeah - I pre-ordered... and yeah - I was absolutely pissed off when I openned the package Wednesday morning to find that my metal case looked like somebody had jumped up and down on it.... then the disk inside was scratched to hell. The game works (so far) but the video sometimes jumps or pauses.

    Anyway - Halo 3 is basically Halo 2... does nothing different... just wraps up the story line. I completed BioShock last week, Halo just seems too clean cut and basic in comparison. In BioShock you get plasmids which give you special abilities like freezing, electric bolts, hypnotise and enrage enemies etc... in Halo I can... OOoo - get another gun.... yey....

    The plot-line of BioShock is amazing, with huge twists in the storyline and amazingly told.... the plotline in Halo.... not so good, but not as bad as some games.

    Halo is overrated - but its a decent game. The big thing was the online play... and last night I was playing legendary difficulty with some mates online in co-op story mode and it is REALLY fun to play.... but soon enough we will have new versions of GoW/COD/MoH and loads of other games that also do online co-op story modes and not just deathmatch type ones.

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