From the beginning, I fought 'til the end.
It all started back during the release of the Xbox. My memory has blurred a bit since and It's hard to remember it, but I know that I got my Xbox one way or another. Before I had Halo, I think I might have played Buffy at my sister's old place... Pretty puzzling at the time... not sure if this was before or after really.
Sooner or later, me and my brother got an Xbox for Christmas, which had the game 'Halo' along with it. I may have been quite young at the time, but I'm sure I was mature enough. I started up the console and put the disk in the tray.
The Halo Theme rang through my ears as the word 'Bungie' faded in, on to the screen. I was fascinated by it. I sat bewildered on the floor by the television gazing at Ring that was etched from one end of my mind to the other forever.
I booted up the campaign, watched as enchanting music played as spaceships flew from the right of the screen. I watched and listened intently.
Then the fun began.
"The Sealed Casket"
I saw a body of metal climb out of it. I was inspired as I saw the story of the ship's destruction before me as I dashed my way through, eventually coming face to face with my foes; 'childish turtles' and 'funny blue dinosaurs'. As silly as that first assumption sounded, I was later to find I wasn't the only one who had that first glance impression.
After escaping the Pillar of Autumn, I saw my character, 'The Chief', climb aboard an escape pod, deciding not to take a seat.
After the crash landing, I felt sadness for the Marines who died around me, knowing that I was in a suit of the toughest metal, MJOLNIR as it became later known, and that I was still alive thanks to it.
I headed outside to look around, leading me to state of bewilderment, a need to explore, but from my state of which I was brought to by Cortana, warning me that a Covenant patrol was approaching and that I should hide in the hills up ahead. I looked left to find my bridge and from there, my journey on the Ring began.
Fighting the toughest of foes, coming into close contact with the Hunters, taking out Jackals, stealing ghosts and banshees, or taking a ride around in the Warthog with a marine on back. Pursuing to complete my mission; to rally up all marines and discover the secrets of Halo.
Then I came to the darkest segment I have encountered in a Halo Game
Being dropped off in a swamp by Pelican in search yet again for Captain Keyes, I moved along seeing enemies run past me, covenant dropships destroyed paving a road of destruction to which beyond would lie an even greater threat.
Watching as red blips faded from my radar as yellow blips flickered on and off from it. Looking around, I saw no support. Just dead grunts and jackals. But no Elites. I pressed on towards a structure with a lift by the bottom. This was too easy, like a walk in the park, but I knew there had to be a catch, that something fishy was going on.
Approaching the final door, the cutscene came into view. After opening the door and catching the fallen marine, The Chief had picked up a helmet revealing a tape recording. From there, I got more and more creeped out until the end. I was on the brink of dispensing bricks.
I dispensed of many bricks that day.
From there, the story grew into one big escape with a story of trust and betrayal intertwining after losing all support. Even by the end, Foehammer was lost, and I felt disheartened, but I pressed onwards (several times, mind you), until I eventually reached the Longsword in the Hanger Bay.
The game was beaten, and the story complete, but I wanted to play it another way, and harder. I decided to give it another go, but not without the help of my bro.
Two player co-op was ridiculous amounts of fun. Though we had our arguments from time to time, arguing over who gets what (I know, maturity can be beaten by co-operation), we enjoyed every last bit of it, find new and fun ways to play, finding new secrets and new tricks to explore the campaign further.
My brother mostly enjoyed having a pack of combat forms in pursuit without the aid of having arms, like 'meat shields for you back'.
After our campaign run-through, we pursued to enter Multiplayer, finding it somewhat entertaining, yet limited to just the two of us.
Blood Gulch remained my favourite map.
When Halo 2 was announced, me and my brother were bubbling with excitement, bursting with joy, knowing something new, bigger and better was on the way.
Our excitement had us forget Halo: Combat Evolved for a long while as we prepared for the drop of Halo 2, which was to impact the world like no other game had done before. We had heard that there was something weird going over in America at the time prior to release, only to find out a few years later what it was about.
Halo 2 was then released. Our Uncle had gotten me and my brother it for Christmas. We couldn't be happier.
The campaign was a surprise to the both of us, and that we kind of rushed through the whole thing in less than two days, greeting a groan from our parents about playing it too much and beating too fast, but who seriously wouldn't want to delve deeper into the Halo Universe and it's fiction?
The only issue I had with the Xbox was not getting Xbox Live until Halo 3 came out for Xbox 360, which was a long while ahead, unbeknowst to me.
I felt deep sadness and a want to communicate over those past few years, always knowing that Halo 2 was that one thing, but alas I never got to know how big it truly was.
By 2006, I was fully capable of maneuvering across the internet with ease, albeit still being young.
Youtube was fairly young, being one year old, but suddenly it had appeared. May 9th, 2006. Halo 3 was Officially announced. I could swear back then I could build a house with all the bricks which suddenly filled the room.
As 2007 drew near, my elder sister told me and my dad about a series known as Red vs Blue. I was glued to it and thanks to her, I had something to keep me busy until Halo 3.
2007 came and rolled on, and came September, I set out preparing myself for Halo 3. I did not have the money, and Halo 3 kicked off without me.
Depressed on not being able to get money soon enough, I decided to take a stroll along the beach thinking about how I would go abouts getting Halo 3. It was all I could think about. Whilst collecting my thoughts along with blue stones and holding them in my shirt, carrying them along in it, I decided to lay out Halo 3 all across the beach with every blue stone I could find.
Eventually, I filled up a section of the beach. Onlookers went by looking at 'Halo 3', looking either intrigued by my dedication or worried as to what the hell I was doing. My dad came along on his scooter heading to town and noticed me and saw what I'd done. He said he'd be back in a while. When he had returned he had purchased Halo 3.
I was overjoyed, thus starting my misadventures on Xbox Live in the world of Halo 3.
A spectacular time I did have meeting new friends and new people. However, not all of them were keen to be... nice.
At the time, I didn't expect to see the bad kind of people we meet over Xbox Live at the time. I was new to the place, even though I had stuck with Halo the entire time, I saw a new side to gaming and boy did I not like it. However, I was beginning to notice a popular uprising from all of this; Machinima.
I was so in. From the get-go. Since then, many an attempt to make my own Machinima went and failed, time after time after time.
Along came 2008 and 'Grifball - The Sport of the Future!'. Once again, it had me hooked. My favourite web-series had it's own game added to Halo 3. One of my failed attempts at Machinima saw me getting into College along with my GCSEs, as I had included storyboards and a script ready, which was then to be never used again. Ironically enough (before getting my act together (read onwards)), I decided to name my Grifball team after my later-to-be-failure; L.I.E (Life in Everybody). At the time though, I was caught up in a lot of things and Burnie Burns moved my Captain status to N1nj0 as my Internet Provider had cut me off due to apparantly just being a terribly bad service provider (We're now connected to O2).
Later, I found out the team became highly popular without me and that they had won a tournament once whilst serving as tough competition for many other Grifball teams, namely the 'Grunts of Fury'. I came to find 'L.I.E' hidden as an easter egg in Red vs Blue: Reconstruction alongside other largely known team names. I gave a hearty laugh.
Eventually, the team had broken up after a name change and a few more competitions with members being on separate teams.
Last year, I decided to pull my socks up and get my act together. I got myself more and more involved Machinima and the Rooster Teeth Community, and having the opportunity of playing with John Graham (Digitalph33r/JonCJG) and Burnie Burns (Church from Red vs Blue). I also became friends with Cam (Zoxin1 from Zoxin it Up! Live) and took part in an LFTO Shizno episode (a conglomeration of users from the RT community who dissect Red vs Blue looking for clues to find out what to expect to see in future episodes), albeit having a terrible computer microphone at the time.
ODST hit stores and I got to journey through a much more emotional storyline compared to the others, containing all of it's humour, wit, charm, yet a constant feeling of loneliness that I could easily relate to. By then I had already seen Firefly and Serenity, being familiar with Nathan Fillion and his character, and loving every second of playing with and along side a character I felt very familiar with.
Knowing Reach was coming, and a Beta was on it's way to owners of Halo 3: ODST, I was thrilled. Beta came along and I prepared myself to render some clips.
I got one with me doing a rendition of 'To be, or not to be', one with me discovering a glitch in the game, and one showing what it's like making Machinima on Xbox Live with a bunch of random people.
As Reach draws near, I come face to face with bad news. Here's how it started;
When the Pre-order editions were announced, I asked my dad to help me out with Pre-ordering Legendary Edition and I told him I had the money to cover it, which I did. Then he went and told me that I shouldn't worry about it and that he'd get it for me.
A few weeks later, I reminded him about it to see if he pre-ordered the Legendary Edition, to which he said yes, so I decided to prepare for Reach and buy myself a set of Turtle Beach Earforce X11s, so I could enjoy the experience without disturbing anyone.
However, today I learned that he actually pre-ordered standard and had completely forgotten. I was disheartened, so I tried searched online to find a competition with Legendary Edition as a Prize and came across one which required posting on a forum thread, so I signed up.
I then got there to find out that you had to be a US Resident over the age of 18.
This had truly made my day worse.
I am now here hoping to win my own Legendary Edition of Halo Reach. May I be blessed with the best of Luck.
I should probably be happy with the fact that I'm getting Halo: Reach, but I still wish to get my hands on my own statue. Dr. Halsey's Journals too.
May the best of luck be with me so I can achieve this goal.
I love Halo, and I love Bungie for bringing me and everybody else such a phenomenal and ground-breaking franchise for many of us to enjoy into our later years and beyond.
- <3 MachinimistLuke