Halo What would you Change About Halo _?

Psychoduck

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A common question asked by those of us who discuss the design of games: "how could this be better?". A recent shoutbox discussion with SOLIDSNAKEee prompted me to create a home for this topic in the forums. It's simple, really. Pick a Halo title and explain which changes you think it could benefit from. This is a discussion thread, so feel free to bicker and argue debate to your hearts' content!

I'll start.

Halo 3 is, in many ways, my favorite Halo title. But, there are some pretty egregious issues which hold it back in my opinion. Firstly, the game's movement speed is excruciatingly slow. Turning that up to 110% would increase the pace of the game without upsetting the intended player movement design on most maps. Secondly, the game's starting weapons lack utility and nuance. Making the Magnum hitscan and providing a 2x zoom scope while increasing its rate of fire would be a massive improvement. Similarly, the Battle Rifle would benefit tremendously from tighter, more predictable spread and hitscan functionality. Of course, this would make the weapon much more effective, preventing it from being an optimal candidate as a starting weapon. This is why the aforementioned changes to the Magnum are necessary. Lastly, something about Halo 3's netcode combined with its lack of hitscan makes hit registration frustratingly inconsistent. The switch to hitscan would help tremendously, but there were other issues at work here as well which leave room for improvement.
 

MartianMallCop

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Nov 19, 2014
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I wrote up a response a while back which kinda stresses my critique of 343s direction with the forerunners.

"My problems story wise is that we have lost what the majority of Halo fans liked about the campaign's. The biggest problem being the forerunners. In the originally trilogy the forerunner architecture all was set up to have these monuments similar to that of Mayans and Egyptians except in a metal form. We see that all their architecture serves a distinct purpose such as the Forerunner gas mine, the entry to the rings tunnels on Silent Cartographer, the giant map on the Arc has large viewing platforms for viewership of multiple different angles. All of this leads us to believe that the forerunners were not the godlike being that the covenant thought they were but rather they were just as human as us. (This is part of allegory over religion in Halo 2 mainly shown through the Arbiter's perspective). THE COVENANT IS SUPPOSED TO BE WRONG. Then Halo 4 came around and threw that out the window. They made the Forerunners out to be godlike (I mean just look at the Librarian custscene from Halo 4). Virtually all the forerunners' architecture doesn't have any purpose and instead is just a bunch of floating masses of hunks of metal. The mystery is just lost completely and is replaced with these godlike beings and their laser soldiers who are all the same.

I think Halo 4 had a ton of ideas that were all great but just didn't really dmget fully fleshed out. We have the Didact. The last surviving Forerunner who's entire race was killed because of the Flood. They had a huge opportunity to make him into a very interesting redemptive character.
To me there's a philosophy over storytelling in each medium. With books it's all about telling the reader what's going on. With movies it's show don't just tell. In games I believe storytelling should be about showing and doing. So in this case I feel Halo 4 completely missed the mark. The player gets all the necessary background story for Halo 5 in a quick custscene story dump with the Librarian. They could have handled this so much better. So in Halo 4 the Didact's motivation in converting humans to prometheans is that he wants to use them to fight the flood. So we need to actually see and deal with the flood in that game for the player to understand how bad they are. Then imagine at one point we see the Didacts forces invade an outer colony village where the flood are also attacking where he is successfully pushing the flood back but he's using the people of that village to make prometheans to do so. They missed the huge opportunity to make the Didact realize he's doing the same thing the flood is doing. (Killing people and consuming them into massing army for their own needs). "
 
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boomer

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The fall of halo began not with reach but with Halo: Cryptum. There are two things that should have been a constant in the halo universe. One being never seeing John without a helmet, the other being knowing little to nothing about the forerunners. The gravemind should have made a return (Which would have been really cool with the new graphics) or possibly a force that could have rivaled the forerunners and they make their move when the rings are destroyed. D: Then we could have worked with the gravemind to take out the new enemy.
 
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MATCLAN

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Oh boy. Basically I'd want a game that could continue the 2v2 style of Halo CE while also being as conducive to BTB and 4v4 as later titles.
A larger sandbox along the lines of H5 would probably be required - the CE Magnum (the real one, not the pretender we have in H5 currently although I do think it's the best 2v2 starting weapon we have despite its inaccuracies) is great for 2v2 but it definitely doesn't hold up so well at the 8v8 scale so you'd need to adjust the starting weapon depending on game size.

At one point I had a spreadsheet going detailing how I'd design such a sandbox but I don't think I ever finished it and looking back I know I was over-complicating it to a degree. Maybe I'll try that exercise again some time and share the results for feedback.

Probably the biggest thing I'd do to any Halo from 2010 onwards is to buff vehicle health. I feel that Reach got the glass cannon Banshee and the tanks (Wraith, Scorpion, Revenant) right but the Warthog and Ghost have been driven into near irrelevance by the system. The Ghost got a welcome buff in Halo 5 thanks to the increased coverage it offers the pilot and a physics system that makes splatters reliable, unfortunately the Warthog manages to expose its gunner more than ever and the bevy of hitscan weapons make removing him before he can do anything extremely easy - I'm not even sure how much punishment from small arms the H5 hog can take because that's probably the only thing actually less efficient than using the Warthog itself.
Ideally I'd want to land on some health level which preserves the Reach system (health regenerates as far as the maximum for the current visible state of the vehicle with the occupant's shields) whilst not making small arms the most reliable way to shut vehicles down.

Or, if I had a time machine I'd go back and rewrite history to make Halo 2 be a continuation of the principles in Halo 1 rather than a bastardisation of them. I strongly believe that Halo would have been so much better off had the BR never come into existence and the Pistol never nerfed into oblivion (13sk from a 12 round magazine, really, Bungie? Overcompensating much?).
 

KILLtrOTTcity

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Oh boy. Basically I'd want a game that could continue the 2v2 style of Halo CE while also being as conducive to BTB and 4v4 as later titles.
A larger sandbox along the lines of H5 would probably be required - the CE Magnum (the real one, not the pretender we have in H5 currently although I do think it's the best 2v2 starting weapon we have despite its inaccuracies) is great for 2v2 but it definitely doesn't hold up so well at the 8v8 scale so you'd need to adjust the starting weapon depending on game size.

At one point I had a spreadsheet going detailing how I'd design such a sandbox but I don't think I ever finished it and looking back I know I was over-complicating it to a degree. Maybe I'll try that exercise again some time and share the results for feedback.

Probably the biggest thing I'd do to any Halo from 2010 onwards is to buff vehicle health. I feel that Reach got the glass cannon Banshee and the tanks (Wraith, Scorpion, Revenant) right but the Warthog and Ghost have been driven into near irrelevance by the system. The Ghost got a welcome buff in Halo 5 thanks to the increased coverage it offers the pilot and a physics system that makes splatters reliable, unfortunately the Warthog manages to expose its gunner more than ever and the bevy of hitscan weapons make removing him before he can do anything extremely easy - I'm not even sure how much punishment from small arms the H5 hog can take because that's probably the only thing actually less efficient than using the Warthog itself.
Ideally I'd want to land on some health level which preserves the Reach system (health regenerates as far as the maximum for the current visible state of the vehicle with the occupant's shields) whilst not making small arms the most reliable way to shut vehicles down.

Or, if I had a time machine I'd go back and rewrite history to make Halo 2 be a continuation of the principles in Halo 1 rather than a bastardisation of them. I strongly believe that Halo would have been so much better off had the BR never come into existence and the Pistol never nerfed into oblivion (13sk from a 12 round magazine, really, Bungie? Overcompensating much?).
I totally agree with all your points about the vehicles being way over nerfed in H5 especially the Warthog as you said which should be the staple vehicle of any Halo and should be feared or atleast respected, but no matter how good the driver or gunner is the hitscan 99% of the time gets the gunner killed within seconds except on the fantastic map Scavenger which is the only map that gives the classic chainhog a glimmer of hope for a descent hog run.Also I cant believe how useless the Wraith and Scorpions machine gun turrets have become, was it really necessary to put a rediculous amount of bloom AND overheating on them? I always thought since the Wraith turret has always been so woefully inaccurate and the bullets so slow that they should give it atleast the advantage of never overheating. Also I think its an absolute joke that you can no longer shoot an enemy hijacker off of you by shooting a nearby wall, killing them with the shrapnel of the explosion. I mean that was such an unessacary change because by doing so they can just have it severly damage the wraith or scorpion from the explosion but atleast with quick thinking you could stop the first highhacker who boards the front of your vehicle.. Also how epic was it in Reach when while in a Wraith you hit the thrusters and a Warthog/ghost or mongoose who was charging your front gets completely obliterated by the sheer size of the Wraith and collision of the impact? It's safe to say that the Wraith in Reach was by far the best and the H5 version looks and plays pathetically weak in comparison. Lets not get me started on the Mantis.. I don't think I have sucessfully stomped a player or vehicle yet in the darn thing even though I seem to step directly on them at times.. To make matters worse for the once mighty and powerful Mantis now you can be easily boarded at any angle which surely is screaming for a patch; at the very least they could make it where emps dont disable it for quite as long since its laughably easy to emp it over and over again from across the map until you are close enough to highjack it.. Throw in the terrible driving physics if the mongoose that flips too easy (compare to H3 which had the best mongoose) add in the fact that we no longer have a UNSC flying vehicle which we could be making epic Flag or Bomb runs in or getting amazing kills in,and you start to notice just how severely lacking Halo vehicles and functionality has become in H5 compared to its last few Predecessors. I think Reach had vehicle balancing just about right minus the crazy flipping banshee that was a bit OP.I do welcome all the vehicle variety in Warzone but thats not core Halo and 343 has made some welcome changes and added features to vehicles such as being able to switch seats, and the awesome gungoose which supplies your passenger with infinite grenades is a blast to ride.But im not going to go into that because this is about what I think should change.One other totally sensless issue to have is the fact that Wheelman no longer count as assists which to my knowledge ever since Halo 3 maybe H2 they counted as an assist and rightfully so since you are driving your gunner around assisting and ifinding him/her targets and helping to manuver them around the battlefield and the enemy so they dont get killed standing still(Really hoping they update this in the Hogwild update; if not by then then I guess it just isnt happening. .) I think since hitscan isnt going to go away that they should buff the gunner just a bit in the Warthog, Im not sure how else to balance it out and make the standard hog a viable weapon again, but a small armor buff or perhaps slightly faster shield recharging while gunning in the hog could help. Another cool change that I just thought of is for the scout hog; why not have it where your passenger gets infinite ammo with just the basic weapons, the AR,Pistol and BR? That would make it a viable more versatile vehicle which currently now is mostly used just for quick transport or splattering.

NOW heres a big Halo dream of mine but one that I fear that will never materialIze in the Halo games: I think it would be so awesomely Epic to have an objective on a Scarab where one team preferably Elites if we EVER get them playable again would have the ability to drive the scarab around a large map while the other team outfitted with UNSC heavy vehicles would attack the Scarab and either have to plant a bomb on it or capture a flag from it.Ofcourse just like in H3 you could bring the Scarab down to its "knees" by firing at weak points on its legs; thus making it easier to hop aboard and plant the bomb.Ofcourse teams would take turns attacking and defending for balance and the Scarab would blow up in Spectacular fashion as it did in Halo 3 , also killing everyone who was aboard also crediting those kills to the bomb planter to further promote and encourage people to play the objective, which as many of us Halo veterans know can sometime be a problem with alot of players out there.. "OMFG my KD went down a point my lyfe is fkin ovar!" :"(
But anyway I dream of the day we get truly dynamic objectives such as that.Also the Updated Elephant from I think the H4 campaign would be so amazing if they remade Sandtrap with those drivable for each team, where this "Mammoth" would be able to crush Spartans and Warthogs or other vehicles infortunate or foolish enough to get in its way; unlike the Elephant in Sandtrap that would get stuck on a dime.. Maybe im just a dreamer but I really dont think that this kind of dynamic objective is too far fetched to be pulled off in Epic fashion. I guarantee I personally would reserve my copy of H6 immediately after I saw that kind of gameplay even teased in a trailer. .
One last MINOR but cool thing I thought of for now would be the ability for atleast 1 human vehicle, maybe the Standard mongoose or Transport hog could have the ability to turbo periodically for some Epic moments like flying extra high off a ramp or splattering someone. They can have it balanced out where you cant turn sharply left or right while you turbo so once you hit the thrusters, you are committed to going in that direction for the duration of the boost.Just my 2 cents and I could of mentioned alot more things I would like to see changed as far as vehicle tweaks and balancing goes but I think its obvious to anyone who has played the last few Halos that the vehicle gameplay and fidelity in H5 are lacking in many departments while in a select few others 343 made welcome changes, I'll give them alot of credit for Warzone but I and many other Halo vehicle fanatics like me desire more of the classic vehicle gameplay that made H3 and Reach BTB so fun, intense and Unpredictable. Hopefully by the time H6 comes out 343 will have learned to strike that perfect balance with the vehicles and hopefully add even more variety to the vehicle lineup in Core Halo modes.
Thanks for reading my rant and my 2 cents on some of the things I would add or improve to Halo.
 
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Psychoduck

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Oh boy. Basically I'd want a game that could continue the 2v2 style of Halo CE while also being as conducive to BTB and 4v4 as later titles.
A larger sandbox along the lines of H5 would probably be required - the CE Magnum (the real one, not the pretender we have in H5 currently although I do think it's the best 2v2 starting weapon we have despite its inaccuracies) is great for 2v2 but it definitely doesn't hold up so well at the 8v8 scale so you'd need to adjust the starting weapon depending on game size.

At one point I had a spreadsheet going detailing how I'd design such a sandbox but I don't think I ever finished it and looking back I know I was over-complicating it to a degree. Maybe I'll try that exercise again some time and share the results for feedback.

Probably the biggest thing I'd do to any Halo from 2010 onwards is to buff vehicle health. I feel that Reach got the glass cannon Banshee and the tanks (Wraith, Scorpion, Revenant) right but the Warthog and Ghost have been driven into near irrelevance by the system. The Ghost got a welcome buff in Halo 5 thanks to the increased coverage it offers the pilot and a physics system that makes splatters reliable, unfortunately the Warthog manages to expose its gunner more than ever and the bevy of hitscan weapons make removing him before he can do anything extremely easy - I'm not even sure how much punishment from small arms the H5 hog can take because that's probably the only thing actually less efficient than using the Warthog itself.
Ideally I'd want to land on some health level which preserves the Reach system (health regenerates as far as the maximum for the current visible state of the vehicle with the occupant's shields) whilst not making small arms the most reliable way to shut vehicles down.

Or, if I had a time machine I'd go back and rewrite history to make Halo 2 be a continuation of the principles in Halo 1 rather than a bastardisation of them. I strongly believe that Halo would have been so much better off had the BR never come into existence and the Pistol never nerfed into oblivion (13sk from a 12 round magazine, really, Bungie? Overcompensating much?).
Couldn't agree more regarding vehicles. I'm not crazy about the idea of the starting weapon varying based on player count, though. I understand that such a system could result in the optimal experience at each player count, but I'm also a huge nerd for consistency in settings. In a perfect world, the game's mechanics and sandbox would be designed such that they didn't need to change from one mode or player count to another. If that isn't a feasible reality, then I like your system.

This brings me to a pair of important questions: should the Magnum be the starting weapon in Halo 5 BTB, and should the Magnum be modified at all from its current state?
 

MATCLAN

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Oh I agree. In fact, I think that there are only two questionable things about the Halo 5 Magnum.
The big one is the scope - I think that having the 1.5x magnification it currently has feels very strange for people with a ton of muscle memory playing any other Halo game where the magnification level was 2x. This is a change I would be in favour of in Halo 5 (but I would not change the red reticle range).
Plus I wouldn't feel forced into leaning on a BR as much in Warzone. I hate how lazy my pistol shot gets after a few games grinding out REQ points thanks to the ubiquity of the BR and its necessity for mid-range combat on those large maps.

The other change that I'd at least like to see tested would be a slight damage buff to a 4 shot kill. I'd like to see individuals have a little more playmaking power off spawn and have a chance to turn a bad situation around. As it stands currently the Magnum is both the most difficult and lowest ranged precision weapon in the game and the slight advantage it has in time to kill over the other weapons is small enough to get lost in lag compensation; I don't want to destroy H5's weapon pickup dynamic, but I would like to see the pistol become a weapon that players can be known for again. Right now at the pro level when I think of consistently great pistol players only Snakebite really comes to mind and I can't help but think that giving players slightly more opportunity to score a reversal on someone with an automatic weapon at close range is a good thing as it would also foster more discipline among automatic usage rather than spraying and taking it for granted (those AR headshots should be more important).

All said and done though, I'd still take the Magnum as it is over any other starting weapon in Halo history with the exception of ye olde faithful M6D Pistol (speaking of which, I'd totally make this a WZ starting weapon too; level 7 or 8 perhaps at which point the tradeoff would become power in exchange for being locked into a single 2x scope without any attachments. The silly passive speed boost buff would of course be ditched in this scenario. It's an injustice that the H2 BR gets to be a level 4 spawning weapon but anyone wanting a bit of H1 nostalgia has to use single use cards and then hope they don't have a terrible accident shortly after spawning.).
 

Psychoduck

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Another change I'd like to see if the Magnum were given 2x zoom is the addition of an actual scope. I don't care for the current ADS-style zoom where the weapon obscures so much of the screen. This change would really allow more precision when using the weapon from longer ranges. The smart link canon was created to explain the M6D's inclusion of a scope anyway, so this change would actually make more sense in terms of lore as well. I'd like to see similar logic applied to a few other weapons as well; the Carbine's scope looks awesome but is rather obtrusive in my opinion.

Regarding the AR and other automatics, I believe the headshot multiplier should be removed altogether. On precision weapons, the headshot modifier allows skilled players to knock considerable time off of their time-to-kill, creating a wide skill gap. On imprecise automatics, this modifier introduces a high degree of unpredictable variability into kill times. Without this modifier, the AR would still be able to maintain its role as a close-to-medium range support and cleanup weapon without being a crutch for players who don't wish to master the nuances of the Magnum.

With these changes, I don't think a 4sk Magnum would even be necessary. But, seeing that done could be an alternative for improving the sandbox.
 

♥ Sky

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With these changes, I don't think a 4sk Magnum would even be necessary. But, seeing that done could be an alternative for improving the sandbox.

how about instead of making it a 4 shot weapon, which is mirroring the classic BR, make the RPM slightly higher instead, but in so reducing it's effective range slightly?

I'd also fix the BR by increasing the burst spread over longer ranges and reducing it's effective range, to stop it being such a nuisance to vehicles.

And for vehicles, I'd reduce the damage they take from everything but heavy weapons (rockets, fuel rod, laser etc) and increase armour for the gunner's body only, allowing precision kills to still be viable and rewarding, but reducing the effectiveness of just spraying and praying.
 

Psychoduck

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how about instead of making it a 4 shot weapon, which is mirroring the classic BR, make the RPM slightly higher instead, but in so reducing it's effective range slightly?

I'd also fix the BR by increasing the burst spread over longer ranges and reducing it's effective range, to stop it being such a nuisance to vehicles.

And for vehicles, I'd reduce the damage they take from everything but heavy weapons (rockets, fuel rod, laser etc) and increase armour for the gunner's body only, allowing precision kills to still be viable and rewarding, but reducing the effectiveness of just spraying and praying.
I'd be concerned about increased spread introducing a degree of randomness to the weapon, but reducing the BR's effective range would definitely be a welcome change. Simply knocking its RRR back down to be more in line with past titles would be a good place to start. If that were done and the Magnum were the starting weapon in BTB, I think your proposed vehicle/gunner health changes would be good ones as well.
 

Cheesegrater74

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I would add playable elites again, add a playlist for the top community custom games, and remove the req system. All of these changes mainly concern 343 but I would of liked to see a custom games playlist in the older halo games as well
 
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Mr Rogers4

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I would add playable elites again, add a playlist for the top community custom games, and remove the req system. All of these changes mainly concern 343 but I would of liked to see a custom games playlist in the older halo games as well
I agree, espeically with playable elites. Also bring back the Falcon as a playable vehicle and split screen. I know it was sad for many when split screen wasn't an option in Halo 5.