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The Best And Worst Halo Games

Since the Halo series launched in 2001 with Halo: Combat Evolved, the franchise has served as a starring IP on Xbox consoles. Since his inception, Master Chief has likewise become one of the most recognizable characters in video game history. His story, and the Halo legacy, continues with the release of Halo Infinite for the Xbox Series X


Halo Infinite received a significant delay from its original targeted release date, getting pushed back to sometime in 2021. However, this isn't necessarily a bad thing. This delay will hopefully give 343 Industries the time needed to deliver a more polished experience for Halo fans everywhere. As devotees of the franchise can attest, not every entry has been a winner.

With that in mind, it's time to take a look at the best and worst games in the long-running Halo series. These are the moments that either made Master Chief beam with pride or hang his helmeted head in shame.

Worst: Spartan Assault was an underwhelming shoot 'em up

While not a terrible game, Halo: Spartan Assault left players underwhelmed. The title eschewed the normal first-person elements of the franchise and opted for a top-down view of the battlefield. This could have worked, but awkward twin-stick controls and repetitive battles weighed the experience down. Microsoft Studios originally released Spartan Assault for PC and Windows Phone, but the Xbox 360 port drew the most savage reviews


Polygon's Spartan Assault review took the game to task for its over-reliance on microtransactions, especially since many of the best weapons were hidden behind a paywall. Microtransactions can be one of the more shameful aspects of the video game industry, and it seems Halo: Spartan Assault's paid content followed suit. "On a core content level, Spartan Assault does a disservice to the Halo name," concluded Polygon.

Best: Halo 3 is still the benchmark

While the first two games of the Halo series revolutionized the genre, Halo 3 is where everything seemed to coalesce into something truly great. The franchise's first Xbox 360 entry, Halo 3 received universal acclaim from critics. Particular praise was given to its polished combat, well-written storyline, and addictive multiplayer. Halo 3 is also the game that first introduced the Forge. This allowed players to design and share their own custom maps. Later entries expanded on the options within the Forge, but it was still an impressive feat in its original form.


The influence of Halo 3 can still be felt in the video game industry. In a retrospective review of the title, Kotaku Australia's Rich Stanton argued that Halo 3 paved the way for every shooter that came after it, including the Destiny franchise. Stanton also pointed out that the ability to share Halo 3 gameplay footage through Bungie.net pre-dated Twitch, putting Halo 3 on the cutting edge of this kind of gamer-to-gamer interaction. For the innovations it brought to the series and to gaming in general, Halo 3 will long be remembered as a masterpiece.