I have been playing Halo since the first game came out on Xbox. It has been fun to see the way the games have progressed with the developer Bungie. 343 taking over the series was a big mystery to fans but it appears they have done a good job for their first attempt.
Halo 4 does several things right to correct the critical flaws from the previous game. But, some of the supplementary features violate the core experience that has always been vital to Halo multiplayer gameplay.
Halo: Reach experienced a major slip-up by bringing in armor abilities. Luckily the two most challenging abilities from Reach are corrected in Halo 4 - the jet pack's flight time is notably decreased and gamers can no longer become temporarily invincible. Sadly, the latest installment not only preserves sprint, but makes it accessible always to every gamer, even going so far as to give the chance to have unrestricted sprinting.
The Halo franchise has always highlighted a level playing field, where cleverness matters more than luck with tactic and teamwork being as essential as coordination and reflexes. The latest installment avoids the concept of a level playing field by offering load outs that boost in power as a player gains points by playing the game. By letting gamers to begin each life in a multiplayer contest equipped with a sniper rifle and other items unavailable to gamers who have spend less time playing Halo 4, the game compromises its reliability. The game also brings in a feature where after a number of kills a player is able to call down a supply drop featuring a power weapon, grenades or overshield. A lot of competitions become saturated with power weapons, whereas in the previous games, players were forced to battle over a small amount of power weapons and this added an important tactical element to gameplay.
Multiplayer combat in Halo 4 is chaos compared to other games in the series, which I much prefer. Certainly as you get more experience playing Halo 4, the chaos will become more controllable. But, I feel that the way sprinting is implemented combined with immediate respawning pose a big issue. When a gamer successfully wins a battle encounter vs. another gamer, their group should get a brief benefit by being a man up and also, the losing one should not be able to re-engage while the winner is still recovering ammo and shields.
Another alteration I hate in Halo 4 is the new scoring system. While I like assists, distractions and other contributions counting towards something solid, it seems that deaths make little to no impact on scoring. I miss the ranking system from the previous game, where your rank could go up or down and represented your skill.
Regardless of the flaws in Halo 4, I believe that it improves the multiplayer experience from the previous games.