I had said that I wasn’t going to buy it, but, after being disappointed with the game I expected to be playing now, and being stressed out recently, and since my wife and daughter are out of town, I decided I needed something to do for fun. So I caved in and bought Halo: Reach.
I’m really enjoying it.
I’ve gotten through Mission 6 at this point, and I’ve enjoyed it so far. One mission reminded me of the Truth and Consequences level of Halo 1 (the night time creeping around sniping one), which I really enjoyed (both in Halo 1 and Reach). The Space Combat mission was surprisingly fun (although I lost my bearings several times - I expected more from the HUD), but easier than I expected.
The combat is a lot of fun, and the characters and story are more compelling than anything since Halo 1 (I’m not counting ODST, since that was basically FireFly revisited). I never managed to care about the fate of any of the elites in Halo 2 or 3, and I always got ticket off when I had to play as one. So far, at least, that’s not happening here. It’s a coherent story and well polished and well told.
I’ve rarely enjoyed multiplayer video games, and I’ve never enjoyed them when playing with strangers. I think it’s just that I want my gaming to be professional (by which I don’t mean Mainstream - many indie games are professional). The time that I choose to spend gaming is time I give up in hopes of having fun. Playing with strangers means that I might have fun, or I might end up with the guy who enjoys nothing better than shooting his own team mates in the back, and the 12 year old who still thinks foul language is the height of humor and loves to hear himself talk.
By choosing games that have a well-reviewed single player campaign whose genre I usually enjoy, I’m optimizing my chances of getting a lot of fun out of my playing time.
And at least so far with Halo: Reach, I’m succeeding in getting my fun out of it. I’ll see if that’s still the case when I’m done.