Back when Halo: Reach was set to release I would say I was at my highest point in my Halo fandom. I enjoyed the series, watched videos, played the games, and even began to read the books. After Halo 3 ended I was left with a bit of a hole in my chest, wondering just what would happen to the phenomenon of a hero that Bungie had created so many years ago. I had mixed feelings, but still went into Halo: Reach nonetheless.
Reach was a great game. I loved the storyline. I loved the characters. I took time to play through it again and again, enjoying everything the developers had to offer with their last title in the series. All together Bungie had created a masterpiece for fans to experience. I became attached to the characters, learning that there were more bodies on the battlefield than Master Chief. The story became much bigger for me in the end than any other shooter I’d ever played. Then the lights went dark. E3 came. Out of the shadows stepped 343 Industries and they had a big announcement for all of us: the saga isn’t over.
Halo 4 was one of the only announcements about a video game series (aside from what Capcom is doing with the Resident Evil tragedy) that really caught me off-guard. This new developer was supposed to swoop in (and I know they’re not completely new to the series, I get that) and revive the biggest character in the shooting genre besides Doom guy? How was that going to happen?
I sat through the announcement in a bit of disbelief. I started reading up on the game, watched some of the gameplay, and finally I sat down and gathered it all. I wasn’t very impressed. At first I wasn’t okay with where 343 was taking the story. I didn’t like the new race of enemy. I didn’t like how so much was unknown. I had began to lose my interest in the entire series, and it was fading fast.
So I let it drop for a while. I didn’t pay attention to much Halo-related news. One day a new video would show up, or multiplayer details would be released, and I didn’t really care. I got to the point where I figured that Halo 4 would be a game that fans will buy because it’s a Halo game. It wouldn’t be a title to reboot the series, nor would it be a game that was able to breathe life back into a lost hero.
That’s how I felt, at first.
Since that time I’ve been watching the Halo4: Forward Unto Dawn series. It’s a webseries that follows some events taking place at a cadet academy that comes under siege by a Covenant attack. It’s a very well put together series, and the production crew has taken a lot of time to create a really close-to-the-mark effects and props. I started watching out of curiosity at first, and now that the fourth installment has hit I am watching because I’m addicted to the story. What’s presented is such an enveloping plot that even has Master Chief himself embedded within it. The cadets you meet become a pivotal point of the storyline, and it brings me the feelings I had while experiencing Reach for the first time.
Each of the Forward Unto Dawn episodes holds its own flashpoint, but all together they create a great story. Well, that’s how I see it so far anyway. The series has helped to start to rekindle my feelings for the Halo series, and now I’m starting to take another look at what to expect with Halo 4. The Covenant versus the UNSC, and the people of Earth for that matter, will always be my favorite conflict in the saga. These new enemies, I’m not too sure about, but I’m more willing now to give it a chance.
If you’re a fan of the series, or if you’re feeling like you too are losing your interest, go check out the Forward Unto Dawn series on YouTube. I think you’ll like what you see.