3. Forza Motorsport 3
Respecting its stride a new Forza every two years, developers Turn 10 have resulted in simulation lovers that can spend the winter to drive more than 420 cars from 53 manufacturers around the world. A generous and eclectic content since this long list includes as many small and medium series cars, which hardly exceed the 150 horses that war thunders including the famous Veyron is the perfect example, peaking at 1000 horsepower.
Slow and progressive career requires, the player looks at a lot of these gems during his ascent, crossing his path models made history, the Ferrari half dozen covering the 60 to the 80 to Golf GTI 1992 through the Renault 5 Turbo and the Porsche 914/6 of 1970. Of course, contemporary cars are no exception. American muscle cars, European convertibles, cars trimmed for speed or high tech cars imported from Asia, there is something for everyone, especially as the proportion of production cars is not huge.
The Inside View
The shortest way to sit at the wheel of these cars is the Free Play mode, which, besides giving access to the garage while Forza 3 is used to test (free race in against the clock or two, in a split screen mode) on the twenty circuits (Laguna Seca, Le Mans, Mugello, Nurburgring, Silverstone, Suzuka, etc.) await you. A fairly low figure at first but that can be easily inflate taking into account all the tracks or portions that make up each plot.
Then exceeds the 100 bar route, which is not enough to make an extremely varied with Forza 3 racing game in terms of circuits, especially as the latter are not always visually very successful. One thinks especially of the textures (plastic rocks, supernatural flora) just missed it in order that the side of the technical problems encountered by the game of Turn 10.
While modeling cars is impeccable if not lavish and a remarkable fidelity, we see few pops of rather coarse shadows, a clipping admittedly somewhat less pronounced in the background but this light effects and forgotten in interior view. An interior view perfectly playable but do not offer the expected speed sensations.
But the bulk of Forza 3, it is obviously a slow and gradual fashion career based around a calendar that completes the seasons and your driving skills. Indeed, you will chain them years to go around the world Forza 3 since you will have to bend the dates you imposed on paper and make choices based on categories of vehicles accepted in each event. Priorities will then impose on you and it will not skimp on the means to upgrade the cars in your garage.
Indeed, some competitions require that you were driving a jalopy with a minimum doctored. Do not panic, instead of spending your time in selecting each room allowing for example to reduce weight or increase power, a screen offers a standard invoice that includes all the improvements that can be installed on your checkout.
Do you accept the quote or prefer to manage each purchase separately, based on the needs and most importantly, your liquid. In addition, the mechanism works in the other direction when it is necessary to remove a few parts in order to be accepted in a particular competition. If we add to that the timely intervention of voice, clarity of menus, the speed with which we switch a car to another, or the general organization of the interface, Forza 3 offers us the One of the coolest Career modes that we have ever seen in a racing game.
The possibilities are quite numerous, either mechanically or cosmetically, through different stores manufacturers, through the interface or settings to the test summarizing the intrinsic performance of your cars. Briefly, finds happiness in terms of customization, so even visually, since the store offers a mine wheels and some ailerons and spoilers whose number will obviously vary according to their compatibility with your car.
Paints, vinyls and decals are also part and the least we can say is that the number of models is impressive. Better yet, always from the perspective allowing the player to save time and the neophyte to make the right choices without hair pulling, the interface includes quick settings that modify the class of your car, the aim to make eligible for a new trial.
Obviously, all is not done to the eye as it is necessary for it to install the right parts. Finally, note that it is possible to save or download on Xbox Live type settings and consult it at any time via a screen designed for this purpose.
Level gameplay, Forza 3 ensures that at all levels since it takes the mechanisms of Forza 2, namely a driving while movement and precision. The grip is almost immediate and the ability gradually disable each driving aids (automatic braking, ABS, stability control, traction control, auto or manual transmission, suggested path difficulty of the AI, damage, fuel and tire wear) can increase the gains from each victory.
Indeed, an index is calculated based on the configuration for which you choose, the more you deprive yourself of aid, the higher the index will increase and larger sums of money at stake. Getting back to the gameplay of Forza 3, it again emphasizes that many efforts have been made to lend credibility to the reactions of cars according to their category.
Moreover, the game makes us feel more realistic and balanced on low-end models as when driving airplanes, often prone to recurrent understeer and not always justified. Anyway, it turns out perfectly playable to the pad as well as driving the regulars of the cross (there are still a few, courageous!) Suffer from rigid management and not so reactive that analog stick, for the impressive shot accuracy.
Visuals and Graphics
The fun game is waiting for you in spite of the sometimes unpredictable AI, lover of fish tails and able to close the door while your passing is well under way.
Difficult in such conditions to avoid contact, especially as attempt to drive itself is quite complicated to the extent that same AI tends to slow more than reason in simple curves. Anyway, Forza 3 impresses with its animation, almost perfect and quite impressive realism. Just drive inside view to be immersed in the race and get the impression of being faced with real pilots, until their behavior proves otherwise.
The damage modeling also contributes to what we praise the performance of Turn 10 game because in the line of Forza 2, the development team proposes a management ultra-thrust damage that will delight fans of striped paintings of pressed bodies and torn bumpers.
It should be noted in this regard that the title contains a function rewind rather surprising and particularly unsuitable for simulation. It is possible, after each error, to go up the race as far and as many times as you want to correct the errors. In addition to not sticking to the profile of the game, it gives too much freedom to the player, especially as the time of ‘recovery’ is chosen completely at random.
In short, Forza 3 relies on a variety of races in its favor and even goes beyond the basic mentality of the title since found the drift in the game of Turn 10. Very few races are devoted to it and they have little impact on the career mode. For the rest, classic races, championships, short races, long trials or endurance and rings one another without ever tiring the player. And just for that, Forza is a great car simulation.
2. Halo 3
Millions of people chanted its name in the streets. Massive amounts of players eagerly await the coming of the factor which, perhaps, will bring the coveted collector’s edition pre-ordered years ago. Magazine pages long wear flashy colors and obscure TV spots have suddenly multiplied at its approach. And today, finally, Halo 3 launches its offensive. The big question now is whether Bungie’s baby is up to monstrous expectations that accompanied it throughout its design.
Bungie also said there is little that Halo 3 was undoubtedly the best game ever created by the studio. Yet the last appearances of Master Chief next-gen release left us somewhat skeptical or downright worried. With disappointing graphics for a title of this magnitude and gameplay without much apparent novelties, the new Halo did not seem so far removed from its predecessor.
You may say that there are worse situations as Halo 2 still remains the ultimate reference of online console gaming. But before knowing if its suite was fairly strong shoulders to maintain its leadership position in this area, do we attach to the first brand new campaign of soft. After all, since the time we expect, it would be foolish not to describe how the Master Chief will go about “Finish the fight”.
The New Design
Still little reminder for the forgetful player, very frustrating end of Halo 2 saw Cortana ensnared in the nets of Deadman and the Earth about to be attacked by the Covenant alliance. A very bleak situation. The campaign of Halo 3 begins just after a steep decline of Master Chief in the atmosphere. It is not clear how the guy got in there, but we will move quickly on this detail.
Soon joined by the hilarious Sergeant Johnson and the Arbiter, the Spartan leaves immediately on the war path to try to push the freshly landed Covenant forces. Structured around a series of cutscenes quite consistent with what we knew of the Halo universe, the title still sinned by muddled narrative, which will probably understand the difficult scenario for those who have not passed through the previous episodes.
The game even abuses of a clumsy process, supposed to bring some dramatic tension at all but in the end,which becomes downright boring. This is actually ghosting that obstructs your vision during the rare lulls and allow you to distinguish at Cortana tortured and fragmentary speech. Two of these interventions have indeed even been translated into French, but again, we can say that I quibble.
Anyway, the Halo 3 scenario is extremely classic, no real surprises and ends with a disappointing sequence. Still, the pleasure of putting on the armor of imposing Master Chief is still as lively and inevitably ends up delving into the adventure with a little bitter taste in the mouth all the same time.
Effects and Explosions
In terms of structure, the last campaign Master Chief is very similar to the previous parts. Indeed, it has 10 chapters, representing eight hours of play. Beware though, the Normal difficulty mode is not recommended if you do not want to exterminate Halo 3 in 6 or 7 hours. We can nevertheless take comfort in the arms of three other players, since the title gives us the opportunity to repeat the campaign in cooperation on the live, lan or in split screen.
The latter option is also not recommended because the game loses much of its fluidity and finesse, and he does not even deign longer display 16: 9. But what exactly does one discoverin that famous campaign you ask? Intense action, which blends smoothly conducted on foot fight sequences in the tradition of Halo vehicles and extremely intense sessions, so still as pleasant.
Halo 3 can no longer be placed on the same level as its predecessors in the sense that the skirmishes that were the heartbeat of the player turned into pitched battles involving large numbers of fighters and vehicles. Some levels are also pride to vast open environments, perfect for maneuvering with the vehicles of the game. Yet we cannot help regretting the ultra linear structure of the security, and these repeated many game situations yet and again, as was the case in the first Halo.
Certainly, the criticism seems easy when talking of a FPS, but still, through a level to complete a goal, then immediately learn that he must start in reverse, browse the same rooms, which are naturally repopulated meanwhile, is a tad annoying. Especially since the soft tightens us this process 4 or 5 times during the campaign, to the point that eventually wonders if this was not an artifice developers to inflate the life of the poor solo.
But the fact is that massacred the Covenant is still fun. This is probably because the Master Chief meets all demands in a flash, and that controls are still as intuitive. Notable difference with its predecessors, however, the X button is now used to deploy special devices such as protective bubble, impervious to fire but not to raid an enemy came to do battle with butts.
The button in question will also allow us to use antipersonnel mines, blinding grenades, bombs that suck the energy shields, and a skimmer module trampoline so futuristic that achieves the seemingly inaccessible areas.
You will not be also the only to use these weapons since the Covenant will often use it. Disturbing at first, these new options provide a definite plus to the game. Let’s talk finally AI immense pride about Bungie, and holds roughly the road into the game, but occasionally offers us great moments n ‘ anything.
As for pop-guns, rest assured, there are many, varied and above all perfectly balanced. Note for example the destructive power of Needler and hammer Brutes, who will probably compete with the Energy Sword. Finally, note the arrival of heavy weapons which inevitably evoke those of Lost Planet and thus slow down the movements of the wearer. Fight with both hands and weapons is always possible, but a player who is satisfied with a combat rifle and grenades 4 types of game may be equally effective.
Side vehicles, new entrants come to post on the start line. So we find our traditional Warthogs, Scorpions, Ghosts and Banshees alongside Mongoose we already saw in the beta. Mongoose is a small quad, very fast and incredibly handy that will prove perfect for rallying a distant point or maintain a lightning raid on enemy positions.
Also include the Hornet, which seems to be the response to the UNSC famous Covenant Banshee. The craft has also more like a helicopter than the little purple rocket. Capable of operating a hover, strafing the enemy copiously while releasing a duet small homing rockets, the Hornet is as deadly as pleasant to drive.
Alien hand, it hosts the Chopper, the motorcycle Brutes, substitutes Elite Covenant within the alliance. Rather tricky to master, the Chopper is the image of its designers: formidable when loading another vehicle with a squirt of boost, it is much less effective when it comes to shoot a distant target.
The Cinema Mode
Finally, Theater Mode is posed like the icing on the cake. Halo 3 keeps a video history of the last 25 games in which you participated. It will be possible to view in free camera or following your opponents. Stop image, advance the film, zoom, anything is possible. Especially we can save the movie as is or make real clips, edited and even why not scripted.
These clips will be accessible to other players, just like the last Burnout videos. In short, Halo 3 has everything to become the new benchmark on Xbox Live. Fun, fun, ultra complete the game in multi retains the flavor of its predecessors but fate greatly enriched forges Bungie.
Halo 3 has not really live up to what was reported to us, the fault to its realization and disappointing solo campaign sometimes joking, but suffers from many shortcomings and a short lifetime. Best multiplayer, polished, on which many players lose their nights and much of their weekends.
1. Halo Reach
The last game in the famous series of FPS to be produced by the Bungie studio, Halo Reach is the absolute culmination of more than 8 years of passion. By staging a falling world, the American developer has created a sort of Apocalypse flamboyant and tragic, both darker and terribly involved more than anything we have discovered so far.
Basically, Halo Reach is the best thanks that could address the studio to the millions of fans who have supported him since his debut on Xbox. As an epic, grandiose and black as the unfathomable depths of space.
As you probably know, Halo Reach is a prequel to the original trilogy and therefore describes events prior to those of Combat Evolved. The action takes place on planet Reach, humanity ultimate bulwark against the motley hordes of Covenant forces, and birthplace of the famous Spartans. This story, fans probably already know it, since everything was narrated in the novel by Eric Nylund Halo and discussed since in various promotional videos.
Also, you will not be surprised if you are told that the battle for Reach is unwinnable, that the planet is indeed doomed and that will inevitably fall, whatever you do. Grim, yes, but the fact is that this premise has allowed Bungie to let go and to bathe his title in a much heavier and more adult atmosphere than other parts of the series.
The staging, sometimes grandiose, literally buries that of his predecessors and the player often impotent witness appalling acts of destruction. At the end of some missions, it is sometimes found to gaze open-mouthed, the hopeless spectacle of a world being consumed.
All the sacrifices and heroic acts depicted in the campaign so take a tragic tinge that Halo was not accustomed us. Basically, the first, the most unexpected and most successful surprises Reach is undoubtedly reaching to touch the player, to involve emotionally.
Learning From the Past
This particular view also explains the choice of color, much darker than the other album. This is not to say that flashy armor and Covenant ships are not in the game, but overall, the representation of conflict and the universe in which it takes place seems much more “realistic” than in Halo 3. Obviously, Reach does not give into melodrama, make no mistake.
The objective is obviously to make you participate in thrashing of gunfights, walk aboard good land, air or even space! Know also that the title, by definition, not staged the famous Master Chief but the Noble Team, a squad of highly specialized Spartans, and ultimately even more effective than good old John.
However, despite what you might have thought, Halo Reach abandons the narrative through several players, introduced by the episode ODST, to focus on the only character of Noble Six, the last dated rookie squad. Man or woman of your choice, the warrior wears a largely customizable armor you can change pocketing funds, either by finishing the campaign missions or play online. Note that these mods have only aesthetic value and do not affect the performance of your Spartan.
Because yes, if your proud Spartan does indeed have a personal shield that recharges when you do not suffer damage, the guy will still ensure the state of his health bar. Reach therefore takes up the old classic pattern of FPS (also used by Combat Evolved and ODST), with care kits stashed around to finding it will be if something goes wrong. For the rest, in fact Halo Reach Halo.
Your soldier meets all demands in a flash thanks to always intuitive controls. Fans like neophytes should therefore not take too long to take their brands. Still we note the possibility of using a night vision filter as well as to assassinate an enemy in hand-to-hand through a nice finish move.
A technical not that easy to operate, since you will need to find in the back of your victim and hold the button dedicated to the butts. In short, nothing really new out of this famous system mods. But it must be said that the latter, as the name suggests, truly changing the way we approach the fighting.
This is all the more clear that the level design, which blithely gum rehearsals that were thought to become almost traditional in the series, really offers a wealth of opportunities to fully exploit these new capabilities. Whether in open areas or hallways clean, we always find way to make good use of our model of the moment.
However, some sequences require you to use a particular mod, failing to experience all the difficulties of the world to progress. Thus, we find, for example to follow a squad of privates with jetpacks between two huge skyscrapers, or attempt to stop a Covenant tank to blow EMP wave because we do not necessarily will have heavy weapons .
As for the structure of the campaign, it is fairly similar to that of previous Halo. Indeed, it has 10 chapters, representing about 8 hours of play. Beware though, the general difficulty seems to have been revised upwards and the last two chapters not oppose you feel resistance, and this from the Normal mode ! That’s probably what aficionados comfort and ensure a minimum of challenge, even when they cross the co-op campaign with three friends.
But in all cases, benefit from an intense action, varied smoothly conducted mingling of walk fight sequences in the tradition of Halo vehicles and sessions extremely intense, so still as pleasant. In addition, Reach differs from its predecessors by large-scale fighting, sometimes involving dozens of Grunts, Elites, Brutes and Marines!
Although cut, the game pays even the luxury to make us participate in a space battle (with exemplary handling) in the vein of Rogue Leader, before leaving us address a Covenant cruiser and battle aliens face there face, in a necessarily diminished gravity! The game is increasingly marked by a great rise to a resounding finish.
As such, we recommend also to not let your controller until the end credits … In fact, the only downside may come from the trend of the game to put us in a defensive position, but in vast enclosed areas that evoke arenas designed specifically for Firefight mode.
Somewhat artificial transition, but transition anyway, allowing us to now discuss the other side of Halo Reach, namely its multiplayer. Suffice it here to describe some aspects, a multi of this calibre need to live a little in contact with the players so that we can really judge its quality. But the fact is that the potential is considerable, much further Reach Halo 3.
Apart from a largely journal interface configuration options that cover absolutely all areas, the game obviously spring everything we already in his profitions predecessor while adding some new features. We first count on the Hunter mode heads, a kind of Deathmatch in which each victim will drop a skull. To score points, you will need to gather as much before wearing in a specific area.
The problem is that the area in question is mobile and that in addition, a marker always show your opponents your position and the number of skulls you be carrying … The Invasion Mode meanwhile, is fairly similar the Rush Bad Company 2: a team of 6 to 6 rubs Spartans Elites determined to protect two goals. If they are destroyed, the map expands to provide a new base and a new pair of goals to destroy / protect.
Now to the Stockpile mode. Also playable in a team, this mode will require you to go collect neutral flags scattered throughout the map to bring them into your camp. Classic you say. Yes, except that the recovered flags will actually recognized only after a countdown of one minute, one minute that will seem particularly long when the enemy is in your camp invite.
Other surprises await us, of course, especially since Bungie will continue as usual to change the game in the coming months. But the simple principle of classes, each with mods we described above, can change dramatically throughout the multi Halo experience.
To finish and reassure longtime fans, let’s just say the game since beta, developers have struggled to balance the title and to accelerate the pace slightly, so that it can offer as furious as technical experience. The icing on the cake, the Forge mode supports more than ever as a full level editor, comprehensive while remaining accessible enough.
In short, Halo Reach, regardless of the angle considered, appears as the most successful episode of exceptional series. An absolute must, which all 360 owners will have to integrate into their game library.