Halo is the single most successful game franchise that's largely exclusive to Xbox, so it's unlikely any time soon that it will be retired.
What makes Halo Spartan Assault a new direction is that it's the first Halo arcade game. In other words, it's cheap ($19.95) and - by full game standards - short. It's also a "top down" shooter, which means your view of the Spartan soldier you control is looking down from above, basically a god's eye view of the action.
While Halo had a similar approach with the real time strategy game Halo Wars five years ago, the smaller scale to Spartan Assault made it easier to grasp. Most of the time you only have to learn how to control your Spartan, whether it is on foot or controlling a vehicle - which includes taking over some enemy Convenant. I found the joystick control for pointing your weapon over-sensitive, but otherwise it was like being back in the Halo universe, albeit with no surprises.
For an arcade game, it has a generous 30 missions. And by also setting the action between the storyline in Halo 3 and Halo 4 you not only battle the Convenant but the less predictable mutant Flood.
Players also have the option of online co-op multiplayer mode.
Spartan Assault will mostly appeal to Halo fans, who, like me, enjoyed seeing the game in miniature, as if playing with toys on a table. But no knowledge of Spartan Assault is needed to grasp the idea and blast away.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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