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Is Halo an Arena Shooter?

Is Halo an Arena Shooter?  

117 members have voted

  1. 1. Is Halo an Arena Shooter?

    • I think Halo is or should be an arena shooter
      66
    • I think Halo is inspired by or should be inspired by arena shooters
      49
    • I think Halo does not or should not have anything to do with arena shooters
      2


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We had a thread on something like this a while back (and I imagine this isn't a new idea anyway), but I thought the Halo fanbase - especially the competitive side - could expand upon this discussion:

LINK

The gist of it is that Halo is not really an arena shooter because it only has two weapon slots, rechargeable health, is lacking in movement and verticality, has vehicles, and a slower time to kill, among other things. Do you agree with this, or do you feel that it is still an arena shooter despite its differences from the traditional titles on the PC?

With Halo 5 looking to hearken back to the "arena" gameplay the Halo series used to contain, do you think we'll be seeing more of the aforementioned gameplay mechanics? What could Halo 5 introduce (especially in the vein of Spartan Abilities) to make it more like traditional Arena shooters, or even just enhance its own version of the arena shooter?

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Maybe I don't have the same definition of "arena" as others but when I think arena I think twitch shooters like UT and Quake with crazy movement mechanics and map designs that really direct the flow of combat (some halo maps achieve this) rather than just accomodating it.

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I wouldn't classify Halo as an arena shooter and I think anyone that does is kidding themselves.

 

It doesn't play anything like Quake, Unreal, Painkiller, etc. Arena shooters often have no reloads (you just keep shooting until you run out of ammo), extremely exaggerated physics, faster movement speeds and you can survive multiple rockets to the face.

 

 

Watch that and tell me Halo is even remotely similar.

 

Halo falls somewhere in between an arena shooter and a tactical/team based shooter like Call of Duty or Counter Strike.

 

This is why I loved Halo. Halo 1 has game play like NO OTHER GAME.

 

In Quake and Unreal there is no Oddball or KOTH and CTF is just an excuse to run around the map shooting people. These games don't have the same team element Halo has.

 

At the same time, team based tactical shooters like Counter Strike you die and you don't respawn until the next round, or players die almost instantly when shot, etc.

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Not a pure Arena shooter, just like RS Vegas is not considered a "pure" tactical FPS while the RS trilogy is. The more realistic movement is the biggest difference mechanic wise(besides the platform obviously), but in comp play Halo is not "slow" like alot of PC elitists think unless your comparing it to Quake(which ALL modern FPS are in comparison). 

 

It may be slow to noobs because they have little controller dexterity and precision so their not getting many kills. H1+H2 are some of the fastest games on console in tournament play with no radar and thats what you should be comparing it to not BTB on Headlong.

 

I would like to meet the guy who thinks competitive Halo is slow after playing the Ogres in a 2v2 on Prisoner/Chill-out or FB on MIddy/Sanc and getting beat in a couple minutes flat and repeatedly spawn-killed.  :P I mean I can show some fast H2 montages if were comparing pub play too.

 

I would agree that Halo is a mix of Arena-style gameplay with more tactical  battles and movement. That makes it a fantastic team-based DM FPS that has a unique style of its own, the relatively balanced trifecta of individual skill, teammwork(heavy on communication+coordination), and strategy is one that makes it a deep and replayable game even if recent installments haven't struck that balance the best.

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The gist of it is that Halo is not really an arena shooter because it only has two weapon slots, rechargeable health, is lacking in movement and verticality, has vehicles, and a slower time to kill, among other things. Do you agree with this, or do you feel that it is still an arena shooter despite its differences from the traditional titles on the PC?

Fun fact: the things described above are what made it stand out as an arena shooter, rather than declassify it as one. It made it unique, still managed to work and super competitive.

 

Though I sure as hell wouldn't claim it lacks "verticality". The jumping mechanics are far more versatile than most other FPSes out there, while not being overpowered. In fact, default Reach and H4 is a prime example of how adding vertical movement as an option will break the game.

 

You just need to remember that the main traits of an arena shooter is the fact that everyone starts equal and has to compete for power items placed on small-ish maps (arenas) and not so much the amount of weapons that can be carried, the health system, the kill times, or movement speed and vehicles. However it's important to note that the two latter WILL affect map size and perhaps hurt the arena aspect of the game.

 

But a prime example of that is CoD. It uses two weapons for the most part, has rechargeable health, fast kill times but it is as far as it can be from being an arena shooter. Fast kill times can hurt the arena aspect of the game because it diminishes the need to control power items on the map. Too slow means it kills the pace of the game, escaping becomes simple and makes it boring. It needs to be fast enough, but also hard to hit in order to remain competitive.

 

Older Halo games have a decent balance of all these factors and it's what makes it solid.

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What could Halo 5 introduce (especially in the vein of Spartan Abilities) to make it more like traditional Arena shooters, or even just enhance its own version of the arena shooter?

 

-Bring powerups back and make them more relevant to the game than ever before. This is just an idea off the top of my head, but what if Halo tried to create a yellow armor/red armor dynamic with powerups? You could have the one-layer OS from Halo 3 onward and the two-layer OS from H1 and H2 coexisting. Same with camo, the weaker/standard one could be the 30 second version, the more powerful variant could have a longer clock, be harder to see, and/or have quick camo enabled.

 

-I say this is in every thread, but 3/4 of the game's current sandbox needs to be nuked. Then they need to bring back the H2 brute shot, the tube, and introduce some sort of dedicated area-denial weapon.

 

-Halo's movement is fine (sans sprint), so I don't really care about spartan abilities and I doubt they make much of a positive contribution to the series (closed-minded! not open to love! hurr-durr!)

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The problem is we don't really have a definitive answer to what an arena shooter is. It can mean slightly different things to different people. To me the word arena refers to equal starts and map resources. It's all about making the time between combat encounters meaningful, gathering weapons, collecting health, picking up powerups, momentum, offensive vs defensive play etc. 

 

With only two weapons slots you can't control weapon resources to the same degree as a traditional arena shooter, with shield recharge and no health packs there isn't really the health attrition/ momentum metagame you would expect from an Arena shooter. So in that respect Halo isn't a pure Arena shooter.

 

Some of the other stuff mentioned I don't think encapsulates the term Arena. Vehicles fit right into the Arena framework. Movement speed and kill times are I think flexible in the context Arena. Halo is not a Quake style Arena Shooter certainly, but I do think a big part of what Halo is, is Arena. 

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It's not a pure arena shooter, but it is certainly inspired by them. You can't have a good Quake experience on console(Except maybe the Dreamcast), so Bungie did their best at translating it to a controller.

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Halo made it's own type of arena shooter. It's not a true arena shooter, but since CE, 2, & 3 started players on an equal playing field, had weapon pick ups, powerups/equiptment on maps, no CoD like half second kills/deaths, headshot bonus, verticality on maps, high jumping, it's doesn't make since to not call it an arena shooter. Though moving slower and aim assists is enough to not place it on the side of Quake/UT.

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This is why I've always said that Halo is a "medium-pace" FPS, because it has elements of both tactical shooters and arena shooters. 

 

  • Longer-than-instant kill times
  • (Originally) no bloom, no ADS
  • Items on map
  • No going prone, (originally) no sprint
  • No classes/loadouts

Vs. 

  • Only carrying two weapons
  • Recharging shields
  • Slower running speed than most true arena shooters
  • Vertical movement less intuitive (until FUCKING JETPACKS)
  • Grenades
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Halo is a hybrid of the arena and tactile aspect that games like Quake and Call of Duty share, but it also puts its own spin on weapons and power-ups and controlling areas on a map. You could still make massive damage with the stuff you spawn with if you have good knowledge and skill, and you can practically go anywhere without worrying too much about your health. Enemy contact is much more heart pounding and rewarding to the victor, as they need to strafe and aim instead of simply seeing someone first.

 

Halo isn't an Arena shooter. It's not a Tactile shooter. It's Halo.

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I wouldn't classify Halo as an arena shooter and I think anyone that does is kidding themselves.

 

It doesn't play anything like Quake, Unreal, Painkiller, etc. Arena shooters often have no reloads (you just keep shooting until you run out of ammo), extremely exaggerated physics, faster movement speeds and you can survive multiple rockets to the face.

 

 

Watch that and tell me Halo is even remotely similar.

 

Halo falls somewhere in between an arena shooter and a tactical/team based shooter like Call of Duty or Counter Strike.

 

This is why I loved Halo. Halo 1 has game play like NO OTHER GAME.

 

In Quake and Unreal there is no Oddball or KOTH and CTF is just an excuse to run around the map shooting people. These games don't have the same team element Halo has.

 

At the same time, team based tactical shooters like Counter Strike you die and you don't respawn until the next round, or players die almost instantly when shot, etc.

 

Completely disagree on the assessment that Quake/Unreal didn't take just as much team work as Halo and saying that Quake ctf was just running around shooting people. There is still a TREMENDOUS amount of team work and team skill in Quake CTF (flag running in particular) and TDM.

 

Unreal Tournament 99 CTF is one of the best team game modes to ever exist. Whilst the games "e-sport" scene primarily focused on duel, the team aspect of the games (more so Unreal Tournament) were still very skillful and I'd argue still more team work orientated than any Halo title (including CE).

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In a comparison between an Arena shooter 1v1 and a Halo team game, I feel that Halo takes an individual's speed and trades it for a precision starting weapon.

 

Item and map control are similar, and the combat mechanics of teamwork are similar although system mechanics (like weapon spawns and vehicles) are generally handled much differently.  In general though, the most important differences are speed and starting weapons.

 

Arena shooters are generally played as duel games or large team games, while Halo is usually played as a small team game.  There's a simple reason for that.  Players need to pick up non-power weapons on maps in an arena shooters, which means in team games weapons are either too rare (with normal weapon spawning) or too plentiful (with weapon "dispenser" spawning).  These problems go away in larger team games on bigger maps, or in something like Instagib CTF.

 

Halo avoids this problem by giving players a precision utility weapon off-spawn, so the rarity of non-power items is a non-issue.  While I think 2v2-4v4 Arena shooters are fun, Halo is a more stable experience in those game sizes because of starting weapons.

 

So yeah, there's that lol.

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I wouldn't classify Halo as an arena shooter and I think anyone that does is kidding themselves.

 

It doesn't play anything like Quake, Unreal, Painkiller, etc. Arena shooters often have no reloads (you just keep shooting until you run out of ammo), extremely exaggerated physics, faster movement speeds and you can survive multiple rockets to the face.

 

 

Watch that and tell me Halo is even remotely similar.

 

Halo falls somewhere in between an arena shooter and a tactical/team based shooter like Call of Duty or Counter Strike.

 

This is why I loved Halo. Halo 1 has game play like NO OTHER GAME.

 

In Quake and Unreal there is no Oddball or KOTH and CTF is just an excuse to run around the map shooting people. These games don't have the same team element Halo has.

 

At the same time, team based tactical shooters like Counter Strike you die and you don't respawn until the next round, or players die almost instantly when shot, etc.

This 100% is what I've been saying for a couple of years now. I feel like halo is a mix between a arena shooter and a tactical/team based shooter. Its gotten away from that over the years but halo 1 and 2 both accomplished the mix and that is why they are the best. Halo 5 needs to go back to that mode

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The interesting thing about Halo is, sort of like what Hitzel said, you are expected to land the GRAND majority of your shots (with your main weapon) instead of bullet-spamming. That's actually not a common trait at all in other shooters, either squad-based or arena. 

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I wouldn't classify Halo as an arena shooter and I think anyone that does is kidding themselves.

 

It doesn't play anything like Quake, Unreal, Painkiller, etc. Arena shooters often have no reloads (you just keep shooting until you run out of ammo), extremely exaggerated physics, faster movement speeds and you can survive multiple rockets to the face.

 

 

Watch that and tell me Halo is even remotely similar.

 

Halo falls somewhere in between an arena shooter and a tactical/team based shooter like Call of Duty or Counter Strike.

 

This is why I loved Halo. Halo 1 has game play like NO OTHER GAME.

 

In Quake and Unreal there is no Oddball or KOTH and CTF is just an excuse to run around the map shooting people. These games don't have the same team element Halo has.

 

At the same time, team based tactical shooters like Counter Strike you die and you don't respawn until the next round, or players die almost instantly when shot, etc.

 

Omfg it's Pyroteq

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it will be in November 

You mean, it was 10 years ago and now we are going back to it again :)

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I'd lean towards saying Halo is (or was at any rate) inspired by arena shooters. A lot of concepts are similar in the earlier games (weapons & powerups on the maps, verticality, teleporters etc) but Halo implements them in a way more suitable for consoles by slowing down movement and kill times just enough to end up working brilliantly and feeling like a unique experience in and of itself.

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I feel like Halo was it's own genre in itself. There is really no other game you can compare them to. Talking specifically 1-3. Fuck Reach and 4.

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Completely disagree on the assessment that Quake/Unreal didn't take just as much team work as Halo and saying that Quake ctf was just running around shooting people. There is still a TREMENDOUS amount of team work and team skill in Quake CTF (flag running in particular) and TDM.

 

Unreal Tournament 99 CTF is one of the best team game modes to ever exist. Whilst the games "e-sport" scene primarily focused on duel, the team aspect of the games (more so Unreal Tournament) were still very skillful and I'd argue still more team work orientated than any Halo title (including CE).

 

Show me a Quake CTF match that uses as much team work and communication as the TDM 7 sec flag cap.

 

You could probably cap a flag in 7 seconds by yourself in Quake and you don't lose your ability to shoot when you have the flag. I disagree.

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Having played UTk3/Utk4 and quite a bit of QL in recent years Unreal is definitely more team-based than Quake. I think Quake was developed more for 1v1/FFA DM with team game-types being a secondary focus,whereas Unreal was made to be more team-based DM and in later installments included Onslaught and Vehicle CTF. I was in a clan in Utk4 called "BulletZ" with my brothers and friends and the clan play was VERY competitive in the prime of that game. We weren't bad but we were nowhere near the top clans. http://www.oldunreal.com/wiki/index.php?title=Active_Clans_(Unreal)

 

Unreal and Halo have the best competitive CTF IMO 

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