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Halo: Reach Brings Gamers Together in Salt Lake City
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Gamers crowded the entrances of any and all electronics merchants on the night of Sept. 13. Midnight release parties are common with sensations like the Harry Potter and the Twilight series, but many people are unaware of the video game prodigy, Halo.

The Halo series has been around since 2001, beginning with Halo: Combat Evolved. On Sept. 14, the prequel to the legendary series was released, Halo: Reach. The copies were distributed to the gamers eagerly awaiting them at 12 a.m.

I arrived at the Sugar House GameStop in Salt Lake City around 11 p.m., expecting a crowd—but not a crowd that immense. I was sent to the back of a line of more than 300 people. People sat or stood in their Halo gear, discussing how epic the final addition to the series was going to be.

As midnight neared closer, a young man standing next to me remarked, “I’ve been waiting 17 years for this moment!” This stirred a round of laughter from the crowd, and soon enough the line began to move.

The first lucky guy stepped out of the store at 12:01 with his copy of the game, thrust it into the air and let out a shout. A GameStop employee claimed the man had been waiting outside since 2 pm, making his time there just over 10 hours. Wow.

But is the game worth all of the hype? Experts from the International Gaming News seem to think so. They rated Reach a 9.5/10, which is basically a consensus between other reviews of the game as well.

Several new additions were made to the series, including weapon load outs, more in-depth customization, and a credit system to allow players to purchase shiny new Spartan gear. The multiplayer is where Halo truly shines, and it is what received the most tweaking in the new game.

My only complaint is the lack of multiplayer maps. Thirteen came with the game, but many are only seen in specific game modes. However, Bungie, the creators of Halo, recently released a screenshot revealing the addition of 250 more achievement points for the game. Do more achievements equal more multiplayer maps? Probably.

In the first day of sales alone, Halo: Reach made over $200 million. It dethroned Call of Duty: Modern Warfare 2 as the most played Xbox 360 title. In other words, it is epic.

On Sept. 24, GameStop held the first round of the 1v1 Halo: Reach “Melee by the Bay Tournament” at select stores. I attended the first round at the West Jordan GameStop and heartily enjoyed watching gamers fight to their Spartan deaths. If you missed the first tournament, you can still sign up for the 4v4 competition at gamestop.com/halofest.

Sources

IGN
www.ign.com

GameStop
2263 S. Highland Dr.
Salt Lake City, UT 84106
801-474-0294
www.gamestop.com

Bungie
www.bungie.net

by Contributing Writer / Lauren Cousin (October 1st, 2010)
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Halo: Reach Brings Gamers Together in Salt Lake City





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