Halo 4: – Forge Test is Best.


Excuse me if this post is a little short on eloquence or any real substance, I just had some quick thoughts about Halo 4 I really wanted to get down and transmit to whoever wanted to read them. This is them.

When Halo 4 came out my initial review was written very soon afterward, with a head full of hype and a cloud full of judgment. Needless to say my fan-boy boner was only very recently spent, still a little blood in it, and I may have been somewhat overly positive. Since then, as with quite a few members of the Halo community, I have noticed quite a number of things that don’t sit too well with me, whether it be the minor foible of an utterly overpowered boltshot, the gripe of a pretty pointless unlocking system or the full on grievance of shipping the game with literally no file share to speak of.

However this isn’t the time for bitching, but rather the time to praise 343i for breathing some life back into Halo 4 in the form of the community forge test playlist. The addition of this playlist last week really was a cheeky little move because, unlike Reach which was all forge maps and sword base, Halo 4 has been distinctly absent of any of these. I think this conscious decision by the devs, at least within my own brain, created a subconscious anticipation for forged maps.

Needless to say I’m not disappointed here. I’m not going to go into a play-by-play of every map, as I am sure there are plenty of people who covered that earlier last week in a thorough breakdown. I will say the whole playlist is a cluster err fudge of frenetic energy, keeping the games and your thought processes racing along. For me Scythe definitely needs props here as its segmented layout really helps with that `who is round the corner` feel especially in SWAT. Purely for the flair in its creation and the nostalgia that ensues when playing this map I would have to say Shutdown is my top map right now, but all the maps are great….well almost…. The only map I can’t really get down with is Despair, the reason being the separation between the two levels is a little too much and (for me even as a jet packer) ruins the flow abit as a result. If the top-level was brought is little closer to the ground floor it might work a little better in my opinion.

Of course there is not much use in giving constructive criticism on my blog where the map creator will probably never see it, and that’s why 343 have been encouraging all who play to give feedback on the forum thread, which to me at least shows them making the right noises about wanting to listen to the community. As I say with all the niggles I had with the game since launch this playlist has given me a little bit of that Halo bug back, albeit to only whip the rug from under my feet next week.

-The Quim Ninja

If you have any opinions on the Community Forge Test Playlist or Halo 4 in general I would love to discuss them with you so please leave a comment. Thanks.

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8 thoughts on “Halo 4: – Forge Test is Best.

  1. I’m loving the forge playlist as well. The other thing that came along at the same time was the second half of Spartan Ops. I personally think it’s a massive leap from 1-5. I’d love to know how you guys are finding the new hawtness?

    • So far I’m enjoying the environments especially that harvester level, it might be the fact they haven’t been repeated yet but yeah it’s looking good so far. Of course the run here and press this button is still evident but I’m resigned to that being the format. As long as the levels keep being varied then ill be happy.

  2. “…unlike Reach which was all forge maps and sword base…” I thought that line was brilliant.

    I never considered the reverse-engineering 343 may have been consciously pulling off, letting the fans wait for Forge maps and therefore making us want them more. It will be interesting to see how much/when they’ll get more play in the regular playlists after the specific Forge list goes away.

    Good read and those were good games! Thanks Quim.

    • Thanks man, praise is always bathed in here. Yeah with regards to that reverse engineering point, I always thought that when 343 said that no forge maps would be there at launch because people were sick of them in Reach, that when they finally came they would be welcomed by the community. Given how long they left it, coupled with the up until now broken file share, i feel it created a bit of a clamour for some DIY mappage and that, as much as the quality of the maps, is the reason people are loving this addition.

  3. The thing I liked most about that playlist, aside from the maps, was the game type choice. I like being able to choose between a couple game types in the same playlist again. As for the maps, I’d say Despair is my least favorite, because the lighting and the wall colours make it difficult to find the ramps and openings sometimes. That said, I love the rest!

    • Thanks for the comment Mike, my co-blogger Eremenko and I actually had a community game night via split screen in Sunday along with fellow contributor SK1LL4XED and his podcasting PGCR cohort Big Heeb, Dust and Echoes host Mr Tomsk, top blogger DayandKnightly and Halo fan InsanexCakes. We didn’t notice that lighting thing but I think because of the nature of Halo 4’s split screen not utilising the screen that well, at least that is our excuse for our poor performance. If u fancy joining us for the next community game night follow our twitter @teabagordie and we will be happy to have you play.

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