Metascore
87

Generally favorable reviews - based on 87 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 83 out of 87
  2. Negative: 1 out of 87
  1. Nov 10, 2012
    90
    It is hard not to be impressed by 343 Industries. This is their first full game, for a series as popular and well thought of as Halo and to improve upon Bungies' games in almost every way is nothing short of astounding. Let it be said, Halo 4 is another Halo game, it feels very familiar and tries very little new, but then again, there is a reason the series is as popular as it is and it isn't as though we see a new one every single year.
  2. Nov 9, 2012
    90
    It's safe to say that although there are some elements they could iron out by the time Halo 5 hits the shelves, 343 did an excellent job making Halo relevant again.
  3. 90
    Halo 4 isn't quite the revolution everybody has been waiting for, but it's on the right track. 343 Industries have done a superb job in replicating what fans love about the franchise while adding their own distinct style to it. With a meaty and well told single-player campaign, multiplayer that will keep gamers engaged for months, if not years on end, and a bustling community to engage with, Halo 4 is an immeasurable value that will not disappoint.
  4. Nov 6, 2012
    90
    343 Industries had some very big Spartan boots to fill when took over the reigns of the Halo franchise from Bungie. All things considered they've done a tremendous job. Where they come up a little short is the campaign, which feels all too familiar gameplay wise to previous Halo installments. They played it safe and it shows.
  5. Nov 6, 2012
    90
    There's no doubt that Halo 4 has been developed in a pressure cooker. With expectations sky high, 343 has delivered a game that manages to walk the line between old and new with just a few stumbles.
  6. 90
    Easily one of the 360's finest shooters, then, and we genuinely can't wait to see what 343 does next.
  7. Nov 4, 2012
    90
    At 343 Industries a fresh and new team of developers faced a disheartening task: matching the image of ex-Halo developer Bungie, as well as the quality of their games. Well, they did it. The new setting speaks volumes, the multiplayer is as addictive as ever and the Halo-universe has never looked this good. The launch of Halo 4 doesn't just provide us with an amazing game, but also with a new top-notch developer. The future of Halo is bright in their hands.
  8. Nov 1, 2012
    90
    Halo 4 marks the beginning of a beautiful friendship between fans and 343 Industries.
  9. Nov 1, 2012
    90
    A great game that comes up shy in being the ultimate Halo experience. Since this is 343's first installment in what is supposed to be a new trilogy, I think they deserve plenty of credit for making a game that may not be revolutionary but opens the doors for some major improvements in the future.
  10. Each of Halo 4's parts are thus excellently done, but when they're all put together, a fully formed, cohesive whole emerges. It's rare that visuals, sound, story and action all gel and feed off each other, but this game pulls it off in grand style.
  11. Nov 1, 2012
    90
    A titanic piece of work that embodies everything that made the Halo series legendary. The changes to the formula aren't many, and affect mostly the enormous multiplayer portion of the title, but everything is so polished and pushed to the limit that we can't help but think this will be the last "classic" Halo around.
  12. Nov 1, 2012
    90
    The question many will ask, ultimately, is how Halo 4 stacks up against its predecessors, and in truth it's hard to answer at this time. It'll take multiple runs through the campaign, hours and hours more multiplayer, and swaths of Spartan Ops mission to truly understand how good Halo 4 is. There's one answer we can say with certainty, though: this is absolutely a Halo game. And that's all that most fans would ever need to hear.
  13. Nov 1, 2012
    90
    Halo 4 is a masterpiece. The storytelling is mature and comes with a deep and perfect character design. Despite the fact that the campaign is not mind-blowing (only 6 hours in duration) 343 Industries' first iteration boosts up multiplayer, giving fans and other gamers a completely new and refined Halo experience.
  14. 343's attempts at endowing this carefully constructed husk of a protagonist with psychological depth are predictably timid.
  15. Nov 1, 2012
    90
    Halo 4 is not a breakthrough, but it's a hopeful beginning for the new Master Chief trilogy. If you loved Bungie's work with the saga, you should purchase 343 Industries' game, though is not as brilliant as its precursors.
  16. 90
    343 have jumped the first hurdle with grace: now we know they know their Halo.
  17. 90
    Halo 4 represents a bold step forward for the franchise that feels both fresh and familiar. Boasting Halo's trademark multiplayer, a gripping campaign, an experimental co-op mode and the usual gubbins, Halo 4 like all the other Halos that have come and gone, represents incredible value for money.
  18. 90
    The multiplayer for Halo 4 is something of an enigma wrapped inside an awesome plasma grenade. To say that I am in love with what 343 has done with it would be a disservice. Suffice it to say that I enjoyed the multiplayer enough to go out on a second, third, and probably fourth date.
  19. Nov 1, 2012
    90
    This is no longer Bungie's Halo, but much of what made the series such an irresistible proposition has remained intact for this new beginning. Rich, lavish and often spectacular, Halo 4 is an encouraging first effort from 343 Industries and a deserving entry into one of gaming's most beloved franchises.
  20. Nov 1, 2012
    90
    Every bit the massive shooter package that its predecessors were, and it holds the series' standard high. The thrilling and emotional return of Master Chief and Cortana is the highlight, and the campaign breaks new ground in narrative quality for the franchise. The top-notch competitive multiplayer picks up where Halo: Reach left off, infusing the action with some mainstream elements while still remaining undeniably unique.
  21. Nov 1, 2012
    90
    343 Industries' Halo 4 establishes itself not as "the next" Halo game, or "another sequel," but instead opts to be a new beginning for the franchise--one with more commitment to its characters. It's refreshing to see the series admit its shortcomings and catch up with its contemporaries without sacrificing what makes it unique, and that's just what Halo 4 does, creating a name for itself without relying on its popularity, and getting us excited to start, continue, and one day finish the fight all over again.
  22. Nov 1, 2012
    90
    Few risks are taken and most of the improvements over previous games amount to surface-level boosts to the presentation, but that also helps to make for a seamless transition from one studio to the next. As much as Halo 4 makes it clear that this is a franchise that needs to grow and evolve, 343 also gets a pass this time for playing it safe and serving the fans.
  23. Nov 1, 2012
    90
    With a satisfying solo campaign (even though it's rather short), more mature both in terms of storytelling and artistic direction, blessed by superb visuals powered by a new and rather impressive graphical engine; a richer than ever multiplayer with more dynamic and furious gameplay, and nice co-op, free, episodic content with Spartan Ops: 343 Industries is undoubtedly ready to take over, and drive the series forward into a new dawn.
  24. Nov 1, 2012
    90
    It's a formidable return to form for Master Chief. This gorgeous game offers thrills and challenges from start to finish, and provides a much more personal story for our hero than what we've seen before.
  25. Nov 1, 2012
    90
    It's unfortunate that 343 didn't stretch past the standard Halo playbook instead of falling back to so many recognizable gameplay beats (and I do wonder if that was a conscious decision meant to counter the "Will it be Halo?" doubters), but the gameplay itself offsets those issues. The level design is a precision instrument. Above and beyond that, Halo 4 expertly folds an intimate story into an epic scope, taking risks with iconic characters and sticking the landing every time.
  26. Nov 1, 2012
    90
    343 Industries succeeds in evolving the franchise and prepares it for the next generation of consoles. After Halo 4 we feel very confident about the future: the series is in good hands.
  27. 90
    Halo 4 offers more of the same, but still manages to be packed with crazy moments, a delightfully tight story and pure joy for all your senses.
  28. Nov 1, 2012
    90
    Halo 4 is a nice fresh start for a series that has lost some of its shine in later years. 343 Industries has really put everything they got into making a stunningly beautiful sequel, packed with high quality content in all kinds of shapes and forms.
  29. 89
    It is rare that a game combines such raw graphical force, such a keen sense for aesthetics, such a strongly built out background universe, and this much style and personality with all in all pretty shallow gameplay mechanics. Halo 4 has power, it has pride, it has a well-crafted personality, and above all, it has dignity. If it managed to find a bit more courage along the way now, it would be pretty close to perfection.
  30. Nov 7, 2012
    88
    Even with its challenging gameplay, spectacular atmosphere, awesome moments in the narrative, great music and voiceovers, Halo 4 doesn't make that bold step everyone's been hoping for.
User Score
6.9

Mixed or average reviews- based on 2767 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Nov 6, 2012
    10
    The game is absolutely outstanding!!!! Visually maybe the best game in consoles. High quality sounds, it feels like you are in the real battlefield, excellent gameplay, jawdropping lightning effects, unbelievable music, awesome story. What else do you need? Congrats to 343!!!! Full Review »
  2. Cg1
    Nov 6, 2012
    10
    The campaign was amazing. The emotional connection between Chief and Cortana was a central highlight of the plot. The villain was something Halo needed, and he is a worthy adversary for John. Everything from sound design, graphics, gameplay, map design, was amazing! There were so many details, and the lighting was fantastic, I was blown away! The multiplayer is addicting as ever!! This game alone is a reason to own an Xbox 360. A must get game, and my choice for game of the year! You jealous, Sony and CoD fanboys? Yeah, I think you are. Full Review »
  3. Nov 6, 2012
    10
    Quick Review: Graphics: 10/10 Absolutely gorgeous. Cut scenes are better than Wars. Story: 9.5 Greg Bear definitely had a large part in this.
    Gameplay: 9.5
    Slightly repetitive but it kept me interested throughout.
    Multiplayer: 9.5
    Very, very fun, much better than Reach.
    Dialogue: 10
    Brilliant Writing.
    Soundtrack: 9.5
    Average is above 9.5, so it rounds up to 10.
    Full Review »