Halo 3: ODST Xbox 360

Metascore
83

Generally favorable reviews - based on 94 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 80 out of 94
  2. Negative: 1 out of 94
Buy On
  1. To consider buying ODST, particularly for full RRP, will feel more or less like value for money depending on whether you already own the multiplayer from Halo 3 and the various expansion packs. If you don’t then the 24 maps, including three new ones and plenty of game modes offers potentially months of gameplay, and value. If it’s just the campaign mode and Firefight multiplayer you’ll be buying for the cash, which I suspect will be a lot of people, then maybe not so much.
  2. When ODST impresses, such as during moments when massive things go boom in the distance, it certainly gives your heart a bit of a jump, but then it yanks all hope of an epic experience away and quickly returns to the rut of re-used assets and recycled gameplay ideas.
  3. LEVEL (Czech Republic)
    70
    Not much new in single-player part but atmosphere and narration make ODST more the worth trying. Now you can try to survive in a harsh world as an ordinary soldier not as a superhuman. [Oct 2009]
  4. In many ways, Halo 3: ODST marks a bold departure from the franchise formula, with story, characters, atmosphere and multiplayer that are refreshingly, surprisingly different. Due to a short campaign and overly familiar gameplay, however, it fails to escape the “expansion pack” label.
  5. Bungie plays it safe with a side story that seems designed to expand little but Microsoft's wallet.
  6. While there is a lot to be proud of scattered throughout the double-disc set, a hub system that drags the main game's action to a halt and some unnecessary inclusions detract from an entire package with an unjustified MSRP.
  7. It’s not a broken game, it’s just not a very original one. Feels like more of an expansion than a standalone title.
  8. X-ONE Magazine UK
    70
    It's hard to justify it as a full release due to its repeating material and its short length. [Issue#51, p.76]
  9. games(TM)
    70
    In the absence of a compelling plot to compensate for the muted thrills, ODST's claim to 'must-buy' status looks very shaky. [Nov 2009, p.102]
  10. Thinking about ODST as the must buy for the player who plays alone is totally wrong. And even if the scenario changes playing with your friends, thinking about GTA: Lost and Damned as a full game released at 1800 MP should let everyone think about buying it at full price.
  11. New Mombasa's burning skyscrapers, neon signs and omnipresent, almost palpable curls of smoke add a sense of style and depth to the visuals. Somber piano and unexpected saxophone solos feel like this is not science fiction, but a film noir. Unfortunately, as soon as we jump into a flashback, the magic is gone. The levels withered by the African sun are a parade of the old flaws. As this short, 6-7 hours tops, draws to its end, Bungie resorts to its old tricks – unhealthy gigantism and “copy/paste” - more often.
  12. The gameplay ideas don’t match up to the narrative playfulness. ODST was originally conceived as a minor side project, and it never feels like anything else.
  13. The core gameplay of ODST is decidedly average - as such it earns a decidedly average score.
User Score
7.1

Mixed or average reviews- based on 1176 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Negative: 56 out of 257
  1. Mar 1, 2011
    4
    One of the biggest disappointments I've ever had to suffer. I'm a long time Halo fan, and while I don't exactly love Bungie, I trusted them toOne of the biggest disappointments I've ever had to suffer. I'm a long time Halo fan, and while I don't exactly love Bungie, I trusted them to deliver a great experience. I'd already given up hope for a great campaign since Halo 2, and all I really cared about was playing survival Halo. I was initially taken aback that a game Bungie themselves had dubbed an "expansion to Halo 3", with an estimated price for $40 was now being marketed as a full game (thankfully Amazon gave me $10 back soon afterwards). Loading up into the campaign, I was almost immediately struck at how.. well.. bad it was. The cutscene animations are laughably poor, and the characters are all bland stereotypes. The storytelling was rather annoying, as between levels you'd have to "explore" an extremely repetitive New Mombasa while fighting outposts of Brutes (more like driving past them with a ghost you steal) and then searching for 10 minutes to find the next "clue". Somehow this piece of garbage reveals an extremely complicated story to your "rookie". Honestly, this is probably the worst Halo campaign in existence. Besides that, two things stuck out to me:
    1. Where in the hell are the elites? I personally hate fighting brutes; they're dumb, slow, and boring. Obviously since this game takes place about 2 seconds after the Master Chief fights with about a MILLION elites, you'd think there would be.. I don't know.. some elites left over. Well you'd be wrong. I'm not sure what the canon explanation is, but basically the H3 engine didn't have enemy AI coded into the elite characters, so we're stuck fighting Halo 3 elites before they even existed.
    2. You're supposed to feel different. You're supposed to feel like a smaller soldier, without super shields, who can't take on 50 brutes by himself. You don't. You still feel like a spartan, but you can see your hands this time. You still run and gun as you kill dozens of grunts and elites with superior firepower to your own. Yeah, you have to find healthpacks from time to time. Big woop. You definitely do NOT feel like a small fragile soldier, and there is no more strategy than previous Halo games offer.

    On to firefight.. boy what a disappointment. There is no defense strategy, there is no teamwork involved. Playing with 4 friends, we just got into a game and found the best strategy was to run our separate ways and kill as many enemies as possible. What makes this incoherent mess even worse is that you're forced to deal with these stupid skulls that turn on after a couple waves. These skulls force you to melee enemies to regain shields, to constantly dodge enemy grenades while yours are rendered ineffective, to deal with a terribly low supply of ammo. Do any of these things sound fun to you? They sure aren't. I knew they would offer the skulls for those looking for additional challenge, but to force them on you? Ridiculous. It ends up playing like a 4-player co-op campaign, except there's only one tiny level, and there's no story... and it's not even remotely fun.

    Some people loved the "storytelling" and "style" of this game, but ultimately, as a Halo fan, it was a huge disappointment. I played ODST for about a week before stopping altogether. Do I regret buying it? Not entirely. For one, I now have all the H3 maps on a single disk and my HDD has much more space. Two, I was able to complete the achievements towards getting Recon armor in H3. And finally, I was able to participate in the Reach beta. All that aside, I found this game terrible. I'm a HUGE Halo CE to Halo Reach fan, and I found this game TERRIBLE. Take from this what you will.
    Full Review »
  2. michaelk
    Jan 8, 2010
    10
    this is another fantastic game that just seems to be getting loads of negative feedback but it really is a fantastic shooter the story is this is another fantastic game that just seems to be getting loads of negative feedback but it really is a fantastic shooter the story is great with a real sense of depth plus the secret story that you descover by downloading all the audio files really adds a sense of depth. firefight is awesome fun with the only real setback being that its friends only i'd really of liked it to be open to everyone but i'm lucky to have friends to play with and if none of them are about i have the classic halo 3 multi player plus every dlc map to play on against one of the largest communities of players thats still going strong even after 3 years as one of the most played games online i really honestly dont understand all the negativity ?????? this game is awesome on every level Full Review »
  3. Apr 22, 2011
    6
    Halo 3 ODST is a decent game on it's own, but with the full Halo 3 multi-player experience packaged with it, it makes this an awesome deal.Halo 3 ODST is a decent game on it's own, but with the full Halo 3 multi-player experience packaged with it, it makes this an awesome deal. The campaign is interesting, with varied locations and classic Halo battles with the Covenant; although you don't play as Master Cheif, it doesn't detract from the experience. Firefight is a good addition, but the ability to go on Xbox LIVE would have made it much more interesting. Nonetheless, it is fun whether you go it alone or with some friends. Full Review »