Halo 4 Review (Finally)



Hey folks sorry its been a while since there has been any Halo 4 news here on Fanboystalking. I have been waiting awhile to allow our hardcore games to have enough time to play through the game before I bound along and throw out spoilers.

That’s right I said it. SPOILERS! If you have not played the game (why not? I mean really get out and buy this one!) there will be some spoilers in this post.

In this post I’m going to cover the highlights of the campaign and do another post on the multiplayer side of things. I don’t want your eyes to hurt too much by forcing you to read too much.

Story Line

Master Chief has finally came back to the Halo franchise in Halo 4 its been awhile since we have gotten to hear the calm cool voice of John-117. He’s back along with his faithful and very “visually” enhanced AI Cortana. You can tell men worked on creating her in this game.

So the game picks up 4 years after the end of Halo 3, the Chief has been stuck in cryo freeze since he escaped near death onboard the UNSC ship “Forward Until Dawn.” Before we get too deep into the story here I have to point out our first spoiler. Cortana is now 8 years old, the average life span of an AI is 7. John learns as the game progresses that Cortana’s core programming is beginning to brake down. This coding decay is called “Rampancy,” it causes multiple personalities and violent behavior not normally seen in AI programming. This fact becomes very apparent as the game progresses with Cortana getting angry with with the Chief.  Cortana knows that her programming will eventually decay past the point of operation and she will, for lack of better words, die.

The first cut scene of the game is in my opinion the best for people to watch because of the information and back story of the entire franchise. Dr. Catherine Halsey, creator of the spartan program, is now in UNSC custody and is being questioned about her knowledge of the program both its failures and its successes. She claims that humanity was lucky for her creating the Spartan program. In her eyes if it was not for the Spartans the human race would not have a chance against the alien Covenat forces. Her interrogator points out that the Spartans where created to fight a rebel uprising on the outer colonies with no knowledge of the impending attacks by the Covenat. You don’t find out who exactly is interrogating her. But you find out this person is upset about how the children of the Spartan program where kidnapped and forced to have test preformed that enhanced there physical and mental abilities.

John-117 as a child during Dr. Halsey's "Enhancements" videogamesblogger.com

John-117 as a child during Dr. Halsey’s “Enhancements”

The games opens with Cortana coaxing Master Chief out of his cryo-sleep chamber. Chief finds himself along with Cortana on the Forward Until Dawn. the Dawn is floating in space near what at first is thought to be a Covenat shield world. You later find that its not a Covenat at all. It was build by the long dead alien Forerunner race. After fighting off a Covenat boarding party the Chief onboard the Dawn make a crash landing on the alien planet called Requiem.

Once on planet Chief runs into new classes of enemies. The Prometheans. You learn early on that these guys tough. There are three main types of Prometheans; Crawlers, four legged “grunt-like” soldiers; Knights, the “elite-type” troops; and the Watchers, flying support troops that spawn out of the backs of the Knights. I want to go into a little detail about these guys because you will deal with them the entire game and often so they will be pair with Covenat as well.

Crawler multiplayerblog.mtv.com



Crawlers are the basic infantry type you will encounter they normally carry the suppressor weapon or the Beam Rifle. Crawlers that carry the Beam Rifle will have a red ring infront of their head. Be weary of these guys with the Beam Rifle especially on Heroic or Legendary settings they can pick you off from a distance and the Beam Rifle on the harder settings is a one shot kill weapon. The best strategy in dealing with crawlers is head shots. Even on Legendary a head shot to a crawler will kill.

Promethean Knight gamingillistrated.com

Promethean Knight

The Knights are the “meat and potatoes” of the Promethean forces.  having the ability to carry all the types of Promethean weapons makes these guys a real pain to deal with on the harder settings, and almost impossible to fight off with Skulls like mythic, thunderstorm and tough luck turned on. They are shielded like elites, and they have the ability to teleport around you giving them time to recharge their shields. But never fear they can be beat! Here’s how. First off they are like all other enemies in the Halo franchise. They can be taken out by assassinations and melee attacks to the back. Yeah I know that sounds easy but its not… If you cant get behind them there are other strategies. Like in other Halo games you still can use the Plasma Pistol to over charge and fire at them to knock down their shields this will work on all settings but Legendary with one shot. On the hardest of settings it will take two or three over charged shots to drop them so be sure you have extra Plasma Pistols when dealing with this guys. The Prometheans also have a Plasma Pistol like weapon called the Bolt Shot that can be over charged and fired to drop shields as well. Unless you have some power weapons these tactics are about all you have when dealing with these monsters. Once their shields come down they will stop and roar at you exposing their strangely “Human like” skull for you to pop with your primary weapon of choice.

Since I brought up the human like skull the Knights have lets take a few moments to discuss another spoiler.

Knight Skull 343industries.com

Knight Skull

For those of you that don’t fallow the expanded universe story lines of Halo you may not know too much about how the Forerunners fought the Flood almost to extinction long before Earth was ever created. I wont go into detail about the connection the Forerunners have with the Humans and how they created Humans to be the keepers of the galaxy that would take a while to tell that story but you have the internet so Google that for more information but I will say that Master Chief learns that the Promethean Knights are powered by Human Souls. The Forerunners would capture the Souls of humans to keep them safe from the Flood, since the Flood feed on anything and everything biological. The Prometheans are part robot part human.

Now back to dealing with Knights. If all my tips don’t work at taking down Knights you might notice that’s because they have a blue shield floating in front of them. Where does that shield come from you might ask? Look above them and you will find the answer. Its a Watcher

Promethean Watcher halo4nation.com

Promethean Watcher

Watchers can be a real pain in the back side when doing a Legendary run. Spawning out of the back for Knights they become a nuisance on the battle field. They are mainly a support troop that flies around above Promethean troops offering an extra set of shields to ground forces that have had their shields drained allowing them to recharge. When they are not covering enemies with shields they are off respawning fallen comrades. When a Promethean Knight dies the human soul inside lives on for a few seconds as a gold glowing star marking the point where the Knight has died. The Watcher swoops in and and gives energy back to the soul allowing it to reform a body and continue on shooting at you. And if all that was not enough they have another unique trick up their digital sleeves. They can throw back grenades you have chucked at their fellow ground troops. Using a tractor beam like weapon they can catch and throw back grenades right at the feet of Master Chief. Killing them off is top priority when they are on the battle field. They can be tricky to kill due to their flying around and shields but a few well placed shots to their center mass will take them down.

Now if you are still reading you are a brave soul… or a bored websurfer. Lets get back to the story.

By now the Cortana gets communication hails from the UNSC Infinity. They have come to rescue the Chief. Meanwhile our AI friend is beginning to get information about this new planet and how it was built by the Forerunners themselves as a prison for one of their own people. The Didact, ironically the spouse of the Librarian from that was discussed in Halo 3. His imprisonment was basically due to his belief that only the Forerunners should exist in the galaxy  and his evil crusade against the Humans long before the Halo story line begins. In the game you see the prison of the Didact as a huge round sphere.

Didact prison devantart.com

Didact prison

The Didact halo.wikia.com
The Didact

From this point in the game for the next few levels its basiclly just some level grinding nothing of real highlight until you reach the Infinity where you get your hands on the newest of UNSC vehicles. The HRUNTING/YGGDRASIL Mark IX Armor Defense System, most commonly called the Mantis.

The Mantis guiltyspark.org

The Mantis

By far the best addition to the UNSC army since the Spartan program! A two legged walker with a heavy chain gun on one arm and rocket launcher on the other this beast can do real damage to anything that stands in its way. With a stomp feature that can be activated by hitting the melee button the Mantis is a hell of a weapon. Oh, and did I mention it can teabag??? Yeah that’s right… It can teabag.

As the story continues Chief gets to meet the Librarian who instructs him on the history of the Forerunners and the Flood and gives him a major upgrade to his DNA giving him the ability to face the Didact on a more even level playing field.

The Librarian  xbox360achievments.org

The Librarian

Now that most of the juicy parts of the story are behind us lets get to the final chapter or Boss level if you will.

The battle with the Didact reminds me of the boss battle from Halo 3 with the Guilty Spark. As the battle winds down Cortana gets involved by implanting some of her multiple personalities into the virtual constructs that house the Didact thus holding him in place long enough for John to cram a bomb in him and killing him. The ending cut scenes are pretty good showing life on Earth during the battle with the Covenat. But only on Legendary do you get the full show. As with the last Halo games you have to finish the game on the hardest setting to get the last few tidbits of the cut scenes and Halo 4 is no different.

As was speculated in my last post I can confirm you do get to see the Chief with out a helmet. BUT you only get to see his eyes. I was a little disappointed with this due to how long it took me to beat it. But part of me still feels like it was worth the extra half second of video time. If you want to see the last cut scene with legendary ending without playing it you can Youtube it but I have included the image in this post.

The Eyes xbox360iso.com

The Eyes

Well that covers the story line. I’ll post another on the New Spartan OPs campaigns and Multiplayer later. So long until later.



A living breathing Nerd residing in rural southwestern Virginia. A rare site in those parts. John was raised on Lord of the Rings and Star Wars by closet geek parents whom he owes all his "Nerdiness" to. An avid gamer of both console and PC. John spends his time playing Xbox, working, and spending time with this wonderful wife (but not in that order).

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