1up - We talk to Firaxis about bringing a beloved classic to the masses without alienating fans.
The original is my favorite game of all time, and I have huge hopes for this remake. That said, the interview is based on a false premise. "At the same time, long-time FPS fans who preferred the more complex version of the genre that existed before Halo's linear, two-gun design look to Halo as the game that ruined the FPS." That's wrong. The FPS staples before Halo -- ones that pretty much any mainstream FPS was based -- are Doom, Quake, and Half-Life. Doom is certainly a far simpler game than Halo and either about the same or more linear; Doom's gameplay is simplicity itself, containing none of the nuance of Halo. Quake is quite similar. Half-Life is 100% linear, as are all its sequels; in fact Halo's big differentiator against Half-Life is just how non-linear its battles are, in comparison. As far as complexity, Halo has more weapons, it has vehicles, it has non-scripted A.I., and it has far wider play areas and ways of approaching a given battle. About the only thing "simpler" about Halo is the regenerating health which does allow for less planning and more immediate gameplay... but given the amount of layering and nuance added by the other things I've mentioned it's not even a contest. In short, the premise that Halo "dumbed down" a genre by being "linear" and "simpler" is false. The only thing Halo "dumbed down" is made FPS available to a wider audience by being one of the first palatable FPS for consoles, and consoles are more popular than PCs. Being popular among an audience you consider dumb does not actually it dumb. That, and the notion that a non-keyboard/mouse-based shooter can be as popular/good/influential as K/M shooters, is what leads to some people's idea that Halo "ruined" a genre. Being simpler and more linear has nothing to do with it, especially since it's the opposite of true.
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