The game that started it all (redone in better visuals.) Out of all of the video games, Halo Combat Evolved is certainly one of them, however in 2001 it was the cornerstone of an ever changing first person shooter genre. Halo jumped into the scene as an atypical shooter, most FPS' at the time were more rooted in non-fiction or were extremely fast paced jump fests (Quake, Unreal Tournament) but what Halo offered at the time was something new that cut itself into the fold. Halo was a science fiction shooter with an emphasis on world building, captivating lore, and a multiplayer that lent itself to organic fun rather than a designed gameplay formula.
Multiplayer LAN's in Halo were some of the most fun I've had in gaming to this day partially due to how unique the maps were for a game at the time and how enjoyable the simple gameplay loop was. Getting an Assault Rifle/Magnum combo to start was awesome, and learning all the weapon spawns through repetitive play felt great. Vehicles in muiltiplayer were great and had not been done to that well of an extent in games previous (on a smaller scale game.) All in all, Halo was the first time that first person shooters simple felt "fun" to me, whether it was split screen combat or playing over the internet, Halo Combat Evolved has a multiplayer of pure "joy" more than hyper competitiveness.
The singleplayer was great for the time as well, however after replaying in 2021 clearly has some flaws due to repetitive zones and occasional unending hallways. Playing through the Library on Legendary is one of the least fun gaming experiences I've had in the past few years. Though I was just negative in those few sentences, I think it's a necessary game to play through especially to see its influence as a cultural powerhouse.
Reviewed on Sep 14, 2021