As one of the most popular series in recent history, Halo has created a cult of hardcore gamers that’s unmatched in the first-person shooter genre. The release of Halo 2 in 2004 and now the release of the final chapter in the series, Halo 3 , have been met with as much anticipation as the premiere of Lord of the Rings or Harry Potter films. Much of this success can be attributed to the first Halo becoming the Game of the Year in 2001. In response to this anticipation, gaming stores like GameStop at La Cumbre Plaza and EB Games in Paseo Nuevo are going to be holding a midnight release of the game on September 24. (Technically, that would be midnight for Tuesday, September 25, but it is on Monday night.) With more than two million pre-sales of the game nationwide, the game is expected to sell in the tens of millions.
Halo 3 puts the gamers in the metal plated shoes of Master Chief. He is a cybernetic warrior that has spent years fighting an armada of aliens called The Covenant that is bent on destroying all of humanity. This conglomeration of different aliens seeks to do this by using ancient ring-like planets called Halos that have the power to wipe the galaxy clean of all life. These rings were designed to purge the galaxy of life in order to starve the parasitic life form called the Flood, a zombie army that humanity and The Covenant have been independently battling since the first Halo was discovered. After destroying two of these Halo installations, Master Chief returns to Earth where The Covenant is destroying everything in its path to uncover an alien structure called the arc. Their interest in the arc has to do with its ability to activate all of the remaining Halos. As humanity’s last hope from complete extermination, gamers must finish the fight that they have been fighting since the first Halo game.
Despite its compelling story, the multiplayer game mode is what has really made the Halo series so successful. With every new game, the developer behind Halo, Bungie Studios, has revamped the multiplayer to make it more intense for hardcore gamers and more engaging for new gamers. Through the growing interest of Xbox Live and its predecessor the Xbox 360, Halo has been able to become one of the most played online games along with giants like World of Warcraft and Counterstrike. Bungie has also made the online multiplayer even more personalized with the addition of more choices for armor style, color, and insignia for the gamer’s multiplayer character. A new array of multiplayer maps to Halo 3 has also refreshed it for those who have mastered older maps.
For the die-hard fans of the game, this is really a bitter sweet moment. The storyline is so compelling and the characters so likeable the fact there will be no more adventures for Master Chief is unthinkable. But now is also the time for gamers to finish the fight!