Halo 5: Guardians Review

Halo 5: Guardians was last year’s big Xbox exclusive and there was a plenty of hype prior to its release. In fact, a week after it became available, Microsoft revealed that global sales for Halo 5: Guardians’ games and hardware amounted to $400 million. Moreover, it charted record-breaking figures that make it the Xbox store’s opening-week bestseller. Continue reading our Halo 5: Guardians Review.

Halo 5: Guardians also made it to the Guinness World Book of Records as the game title with the most watched video game launch broadcast. There were 330,000 unique streams during the evening of the broadcast.

Even with a great start, however, Halo 5: Guardians, allegedly, only managed to sell 5 million copies (physical and digital combined) three months after its Oct. 27, 2015 launch date. According to NPD data, only more than 3 million physical copies were sold in the three months that the game was out. To give you a perspective on why this is considered low, Halo 3, which was released for the Xbox 360 back in 2007, sold 3.3 million copies in its first week in the United States alone. Halo 5: Guardians only sold more than a million copies in its first week.

Note that at the time of Halo 3’s release, there were only roughly 6.8 million Xbox 360 consoles sold. When Halo 5 was released, almost 8.5 million units of Xbox One were already at the hands of U.S. customers.Data does not lie. The latest installment of the Halo franchise is not selling well, at least relative to previous titles.

Aesthetically, the Halo 5: Guardians is a treat. It’s easily one of the most graphically enticing shooter releases even to date. And it’s quite filled with details too. There’s even little critters populate the terrain – they’re quite tricky shoot down, a grenade will help. AI partners are also a little bit smarter and will able to revive a player while in battle, which a whole faster than waiting for a respawn. Players are also able to command them in Halo 5.Aside from speeding up the pace, it even introduced some new gameplay mechanics with Spartan Abilities, which really brings Halo closer to other shooter games. Some love the gameplay changes, others hate it.

The dynamic resolution, which kept the FPS locked at 60fps, even during heavy combat instances is well-appreciated. Funny conversations between Grunts are also nice bits of added details  Multiplayer was one of the areas that many were doubtful of after the disaster that Halo: The Master Chief Collection brought. Still, 343 Industries was able to pull it off. Arena and Warzone were quite enjoyable. The addition of Stronghold and Breakout were also welcomed by most.So Halo 5: Guardians did it go wrong?halo5_keyart_1120_logo-1940x1091

No Splitscreen

This is one of the most controversial decisions that Microsoft and 343 Industries made with Halo 5: Guardians. And it ended up biting them in the behind. Players absolutely hated their decision to take away the splitscreen. Redmond’s reasoning behind it doesn’t help either.Phil Spencer, Microsoft Head for Xbox, said that fewer older people utilize the splitscreen gameplay. He added that when games like Halo 5 are played, it’ll usually be through Xbox live servers.

Hence, if you want to play co-op with your friend who probably comes over to your place a lot, then you might as well get him/her a new Xbox One console. The One S is quite the seller at the moment, any takers?

Butchering the Campaign

If you’ve paid $60 for a game, you’d expect its campaign to last, at the very least, 8 to 10 hours. But not Halo 5. When it was first released, the campaign, on Normal difficulty, lasted for just more than 4 hours. Harder difficulties (Heroic and Legendary) will bring it to about 7. However, note that almost an hour of it is spent on cut scenes, which are beautiful in their own right.

Most of the campaign will be played as Spartan Locke with the Masterchief going AWOL, which doesn’t sit well with many gamers since everyone wants 117. It would have worked if 343 pushed through with what it teased – a boss mission where Locke and the Masterchief slug it out. However, this did not happen. All players really got is a non-interactive cinematic where Locke and Master chief punched each other a few times.Halo 5: Guardians’ campaign then is a disappointment. It teased something awesome but never really pushed through with it.

Not Very Newbie Friendly

Halo 5: Guardians just drops everyone into this world without proper introductions, especially with characters. It feels like the developer just assumed that everyone has played prior Halo titles and knows the story behind characters. It really doesn’t offer much help to new players.

Re-using Bosses

There’s really no new enemies that got introduced in Halo 5: Guardians. And 343i ended up re-using bosses, which makes the game repetitive towards the end. How many times have you killed the Warden Eternal?


Everyone just hates microtransactions in general.

The Verdict

Is it worth picking up Halo 5: Guardians? With the new DLCs that were released, especially Firefight, it is. Unfortunately, the damage has been done. Plenty of people has moved away from Halo 5 because of the aforementioned reasons that impaled the game just a few months after its release.