Halo2 Xbox Live

Halo 2 gamertag emblem
Halo 2 gamertag emblem

… is blinkin’ awesome! Will‘s been telling me to get a headset for my Xbox & get online with it for a while now, so last Thursday I eventually got myself a cheap one from Game, only to discover that I also needed the communicator pack which it plugs into. So Saturday & took it back & got the official headset & WAS THAT A GOOD MOVE OR WHAT?!

The only thing I’ve played online previous to this was the first Halo on my PC. That work fine. You log on, find a game that’s just started & join in. But I still believe that PCs are for working consoles are for games. Halo2 on my Xbox is seamless in connectivity, I was up & running in minutes. All I had to do was plug it into my router, enter my free 2 month subscription (& credit card details for when that expires) connect the headset & I was blastin’ gamer scum from all around the world!

OK, so there were a few forms to fill in & having to use the virtual keyboard is a bit fiddly, but it really didn’t take too long. The bit that can slow you down is finding a GamerTag. A unique name for yourself which other players will see. Luckily ThunderBird3 was available, so there was no need for my reserve names.

Will had SMS‘d me & was online waiting for me. It didn’t take long before we’d worked out that you can add each other to you friends list. You can then invite a friend to join your party. Once accepted, Will was in my game lobby & I was able to to talk to him via my headset. From this game lobby, we can easily setup a 2 player game just like we’re in the same room. But the advantages of doing this online is that it adds more realism. When we’re walking round the maps trying to find each other you can’t hear the other person, unless they’ll close to you. Now, I’m thinking this is fantastic! If you’re on the same team, you can tap the white button & talk to anyone wherever they are just like a walkie talkie.

There’s so much more to it. You can put your party out to battle against others parties & individuals around the world who are waiting for a game. As I’m typing this, there’s currently 58,596 people logged in to Halo2 on the Xbox. So, you don’t have to wait long to find people. You get a ranking level too. When you do well in a match you rank goes up. When you join a match, you will be placed against other gamers of a similar level.

What impressed me today is that Bungie site keeps all these stats on their server. There’s a leaderboards & what’s more, you can find you’re own gamer tag & look back at all your previous game stats. This is amazing. If you link your gamer tag to a .NET profile you can even see which of your friends are online & even more amazingly you can look a the GameViewer which shows screen of all the games I’ve played & pin-points exactly where I was when I shot someone or was shot by someone else.

This is mind-boggling stuff to me. I’m really impressed with the whole thing (apart from Bungie’s site being too graphic heavy & slow) & am now in the process of talking all my friends into getting Halo2 on the Xbox. The only problem I have now, are these things getting in the way of me playing it, like work or eating or sleep…

2 thoughts on “Halo2 Xbox Live”

  1. Now as the one responsible for talking Mat into this I feel I should bear some of the responsibility for the outcome. So to all his friends, family and indeed his lovely lady I would like to apologise for taking him away from you.

    I really didn’t expect it to go this far you know, I admit I was right in there with him, glued to the sofa with my long forgotten hair begining to grow into the headset (like one of those trees thats grown up around a bit of old fence). But then I went and caught this nasty bug which has been going around, the reason this bug is so truly evil is that it messes with your eyes so it’s a bit like having a mini-migrain all day. So that was looking at a screen out of the window and with it Halo2!

    And then I began to unstick myself from the sofa and there were things I could do ….. and so now I feel that I may have in some way corrupted poor young Mat.

    On the other hand, what the hell am I talking about …. I’m all better now, and I’ve just spent the past lunch hour working out where I got nailed on the GameViewer and subsequently where Mat likes to hide (muhahahaha).

    So I’m going home in 3 hours and 1 minute and I’m going to plug myself back in and see if I can’t avoid getting my arse kicked again.

    MAT, MAT, are you with me Mat?

    (The ancient art of sniffing out trouble and then running away and hiding – preferably in a well stocked fridge).

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