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 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.
  2. 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.
  3. Nov 1, 2012
    91
    Halo 4 stands as a particularly polished piece of fan fiction that not only deserves to be released, it carves its own way in an established universe, carefully paying homage to the tropes of what has come before, while boldly establishing its own mythology and gameplay lore.
  4. 93
    The narrative that is put forth is simply amazing as it provides a new beginning with the Reclaimer Saga and the addition of the new Spartan Ops mode is simply brilliant as it adds even more story to an already great tale. Sure, some may complain the familiarity of the gameplay is a bad thing, but in the end, even though you do get a recognizable feeling when playing, the overall experience that Halo 4 provides is very enjoyable and one that you should not miss.
  5. Nov 29, 2012
    90
    The only thing that this wonderful shooter lacks is some distinctive mark left by the new developer. However what they managed to create is a game you could call 'the best of Halo'. Additionally it rocks in multiplayer and pushes X360's capability in a way that probably even the console's designers find surprising. [13/2012, p.46]
  6. 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.
  7. Nov 27, 2012
    97
    This is THE best Halo game yet, and although the campaign in short, there's an abundance of content to keep Halo 4 in your disc tray.
  8. 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.
  9. Nov 1, 2012
    100
    343 Industries have done a remarkable job at continuing the Halo legacy. They've gone all out, creating a fantastic sequel that brought forth a major focus on storytelling while upping the visual and audio direction to a level that will be tough for anyone to rival with these few remaining years of the current console generation.
  10. Nov 12, 2012
    100
    Halo 4 is something really special. Not only is it a first-rate exclusive for the good old 360, it's also a shining example of the kind of technical excellence that's still possible on the elderly hardware. It's one of these games that justify the decision to buy this console. 343 Industries has gone ahead and obliterated my qualms about the brand's change to another developer than Bungie. Now there's only one thing I want: More.
  11. 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.
  12. 90
    In the end, this game is still a fairly conservative and faithful to the original spirit, even with some significant changes.
  13. Nov 1, 2012
    90
    Halo 4 marks the beginning of a beautiful friendship between fans and 343 Industries.
  14. 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.
  15. 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.
  16. 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.
  17. Nov 1, 2012
    93
    Halo 4 is a thrilling adventure, and takes the science fiction franchise headlong into the future. The magic formula is intact, but the new development team isn't afraid to put its own signature features into play, assuring that Halo is on a path to growth instead of stagnation.
  18. 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.
  19. Nov 1, 2012
    100
    Unless Black Ops II or Far Cry 3 manage to revolutionize the genre in astronomical ways, Halo 4 is the clear frontrunner for best first-person shooter of 2012. Heck, it may very well be the best game you play all year.
  20. 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.
  21. Nov 1, 2012
    95
    343 Industries delivers one the best Halo games ever created thus proving that this studio is perfectly capable of handling Microsoft's legendary franchise.
  22. 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.
  23. 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.
  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. 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.
  26. 90
    343 have jumped the first hurdle with grace: now we know they know their Halo.
  27. Nov 25, 2012
    97
    The new benchmark for shooters across all platforms. [Christmas 2012, p.68]
  28. 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.
  29. 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.
  30. 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.
User Score
6.9

Mixed or average reviews- based on 2839 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 »