Articles Combat Evolved Anniversary

Published on June 7th, 2011 | by Ben Gray


Thoughts: Halo Combat Evolved Anniversary

Thoughts is a fortnightly segment from staff writer Ben. His segments reflect his own thoughts and don’t necessarily reflect the thoughts of all staff members or the site as a whole. Feel free to leave your own opinions and arguments in the comments. A remake of Halo Combat Evolved is what I’ve always wanted, more so than another franchise spin-off or extra instalment in the “trilogy”. I spent countless times on the original Xbox playing this game, and even invested in the PC version to spend even more hours in the custom edition standalone. The entire campaign is remastered in the Reach engine, and the visuals close to, but not exactly the visual quality set in Reach (this is going by the announcement trailer). The physics and character behaviours of the original game are in, so no-one should be expecting the AI to be revolutionary, or even just good at taking cover. One of the coolest features is the ability to switch between the new and classic graphics with just a touch of a button. As long as there’s no delay or lag when activated, it’ll go down very well. The game plans to launch at a budget price, luckily. How much would you pay for an overhaul of an old title? Multiplayer is included in the Combat Evolved remake, and many people are misinterpreting this information. What most have come to as a conclusion, is that the seven maps (only seven? I’ll get to that later) brought back from the game into the remake are just a map pack for Reach, and CEA is just campaign. There is more certainly a multiplayer component with these maps in Combat Evolved, and also you get a download voucher to bring these maps over to Reach. I think that’s pretty cool indeed.


A comparison between the old and new engine in CEA. Click to see enlarged image.

Not too much has been said yet about the multiplayer although it’s uncertain whether the original weapons will be included in MP. It’s a no-brainer really; CEA is a remake, so why not make it that? I do not want to play multiplayer where the weapons and setup are completely different to that of the campaign. People complain about armour abilities enough as it is (it takes one look at the Bungie forums) so for the sake of the fans and the remake itself, 343 should exclude these and make an identical copy of the CE MP, with perhaps some perked-up lobbies and such. I think the most disappointing detail I’ve heard about Combat Evolved Anniversary is that only seven of the original maps will be included in the remake’s multiplayer. Now I’m pretty sure that I caught sight of Blood Gulch, Damnation and Hang ‘Em High in the trailer, but what about some of the maps that were exclusive to the PC version of Combat Evolved? Death Island, Infinity? These were some of the best Halo maps, and it would be a shame for them to miss out on the Anniversary Edition. What I don’t want, is three months down the line after the game’s release, for these maps to release a DLC. In fact, CEA doesn’t really need DLC at all. Everything that was Combat Evolved, should be included in this remake. Also, it would be a wise move at some point for CE Anniversary to make its way onto the PC. Halo 3, ODST and Reach never made it over, but considering the original was also a PC title, and there’s still a good fanbase playing the game today, 343 owe it to their fans to bring the remake across to PC. Preferably as a Steam game (never been keen on GFWL) and no doubt the popular standalone Custom Edition would see upgrades to be compatible to the possible PC version. Only time will tell. It’s great that Microsoft have another exclusive this year, especially a remake of one of my favourite games, but with Need for Speed: The Run and Assassin’s Creed Revelations releasing on the exact same day as Combat Evolved Anniversary, it has some stiff competition. We’ll be hearing more about the game at this year’s PAX in August, but for now, I hope 343 Industries include everything the original gave to gamers to make this the best remake it can be.  

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  • Pcstraw

    What?  Halo CE’s AI is still one of the best I’ve seen in ANY game to date.  They certainly felt more life like than any Halo game since (And the convenant are still the most “alive” enemies in any FPS).

    I agree about the multiplayer.  Halo reach’s multiplayer is arguably the weakest of the series, mostly due to the nerfed weapons are dull maps.  Although Halo CE’s maps would help Reach’s multiplayer, it won’t be what the fans want: which is Halo CE on XBox Live.  It’s already been done on PC and practically every game has some boched on multiplayer component, so it’s doesn’t make sense why they’d avoid it.  It’s also a bit crap that there’s only seven maps, but I’d rather have the additional ones as DLC than not have them at all.

    It’s a little bit bitter sweet to be honest.  I like the fact that it’s using the original engine, but I still thought it would be a bigger graphical upgrade.  And I like having CE maps in reach but I also want Halo CE online with ALL the maps + the PC maps I never got to play 🙁  Why, why, why, can’t you get it right Microsoft!?

  • If the article above proves to be true and the maps are just going to be importable into Reach that would be AWESOME!  I didn’t realize the game was remade in the Reach engine based on what I saw at the press conference.  It makes sense to use the latest engine if your remaking a game.  If this is the remake strategy they should remake Halo 2 and just the Halo 3/ODST maps since those are already on the Xbox 360.  Keep the budget pricing and i’d buy them.

  • Only1kage

    I to have waited for the day of a CE remake and after seeing the damnation video it looks as if a hope has died. The days of timers, epic pistol duels, and grenade bounces are truly dead. It’s a sad day as the little masterchief in me has shed a tear and died. But not all is lost, I shall rent this game through game fly and play the campaign for closure.

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