Noble effort from Bungie – Noble Map Pack 1 Review

Ok, so Halo: Reach was a massive game this year, and i had the chance to go to the premiere event in London before release. Since then, it has gone on to be the biggest selling Halo game of all, and has the largest number of players to go along with that. But does that mean the pressure is on Bungie to make awesome maps for multiplayer like with Halo 3?

With the release of the Noble Map Pack for Halo: Reach, we see some of Bungie’s latest work on the title with the creation of 3 new maps: Anchor 9, Tempest and Breakpoint. I will start with the latter, Breakpoint.

Breakpoint is a HUGE map, and i mean proper big. It’s should be used mainly for big team battle, as it can take forever to find anyone. It is very similar to the older map, Avalanche, which was awesome for big team games. On the map you get a variety of vehicles, and 2 bases that are linked together through the mountain in the middle. I found it to be quite a challenging map as people like to use the jet packs, sniper rifles and the top of the mountain to generally wipe everyone and everything out. On top of that, as soon as some one is in the Banshee, if you don’t take it down, you are destined to die over and over again. It’s a pretty irritating thing, but it happens. Overall, i was pretty disappointed with this map, it isn’t as fun as Avalanche and can get a bit tedious when people keep slaughtering you with sniper rifles and Banshees.

Map 2 is Tempest. This is a pretty average sized map, very similar to Valhalla. There are two base structures at either end with a fighting ground in the middle, with varying surface types and different height levels. There are a few cave passages and a river to one side. This map is brilliant for 6 v 6 team battles, and even some rumble pit game types. A lot of the fighting here is medium to long range, but you can get some close range encounters, so it’s worth carrying a shotgun or something. There are no vehicles on this map, which makes the battle a lot more even, and means you can spread out a lot more. I have found the best tactic is to hang wide with the DMR and pick off the weaker ones with head shots, and just back up people on your team with cover fire. This is a pretty fun map, but i don’t see myself picking it over some of the pre-existing maps.

The final map is Anchor 9, and this is a small map. Built in a space station, you can battle inside, or outside in space. That part is pretty epic, and sounds awesome. However, you are very very vulnerable when out in space as travel is slower and jumping can take a while. Inside is a place of death, just pure death. It’s pretty hard to find somewhere that is safe from enemies, especially if you need to recharge your shields. I found that this map is perfect for the smaller team games, and rumble pit games too. Head hunter is brilliant on this map, and can really test a players skill. Again, there are no vehicles on this map, but that’d be silly if there were. This is by far the best map in the pack, and is a favourite of all the maps in Reach.

This map pack overall is pretty average, and at 800MSP is a pretty good deal. It does add an extra 250 achievement points for you crazy achievement hunters and really shows what the developers can do with maps. I have enjoyed this map pack and am looking forward to the next one, whenever that maybe.