“It didn’t take long for Reach to fall: our enemy was ruthless. Efficient. But they weren’t nearly fast enough. For you had already passed the torch. And because of you, we found Halo, unlocked its secrets, shattered our enemy’s resolve. Our victory — your victory — was so close, I wish you could have lived to see it. But you belong to Reach. Your body, your armour — all burned and turned to glass. Everything… except your courage. That, you gave to us. And with it, we can rebuild.”
Dr. Catherine Halsey, Halo Reach
A Final Battle
Welcome to another of my Extra Lives, today we’ll be looking at Halo: Reach.
Halo was/is a phenomenal video game. It helped cement the Xbox as a home console with staying power and became a fan favourite almost overnight. In the original trilogy you play as Master Chief, a Spartan soldier that has been genetically enhanced to essentially be super-human. Throughout the trilogy you take the fight to the Covenant, an alliance of alien races that want us all dead.
But before Master Chief and before the war with the Covenant was in full swing, there was Reach. In the original games we are told that Reach was Earth’s first colony and was sadly the first planet to fall to the Covenant.
A prequel to the original trilogy Halo: Reach puts you in the shoes of Noble Six, a new recruit to Noble Team as they travel to Reach to discover why communications have gone silent. They discover that the Covenant are present and have to fight their way across the planet to rescue a scientist with vital information to Earth’s forces.
The game is your typical sci-fi, first-person shooter affair. You run from area to area, shooting more bullets than Rambo into any thing/creature/person that happens to glance at you the wrong way. It’s a great game with a great insight into the start of the war. But what I want to talk about is the ending.
After the credits you are given one last mission, “survive”. With your entire squad dead, the fate of the planet sealed and with no way out all that is left for you to do is die. But you don’t have to take that shit lying down.
As you fight through wave after wave of enemies your helmet cracks and breaks, your guns run out of ammo and eventually you succumb to the onslaught. This ending was so good to play through and it really hit you hard that there was no getting out of this.
There aren’t many games were you know you are going to die and you just have to survive as long as possible. Most games will have you beat the enemy, live to tell the tale and go on to kick some more ass. Reach was special because it was the opposite, there was no way out, the galaxy would continue without you and you wouldn’t see the end of the war.
Halo might still be going on today but for me this is where the series peaked and I doubt it will get much better than this.
Thanks for reading and I’ll see you all next time. Until then, remember to take care of yourselves. Peace.
The beautiful Halo theme music sung by a professional choir and orchestra