If you’re wondering why a book is being reviewed, it’s about one, if not, the biggest franchise in Xbox history when back in the day that Microsoft decided to enter the console market, a new generation of gaming began.
Yes we had already had a taste with the SEGA consoles and Nintendo were beginning their downward spiral with the N64, but it was time for Sony to move aside and let a newcomer introduce itself to the world and bring proper online console gaming to the masses. What Microsoft didn’t quite realise is that a certain launch title would go on to really put the Xbox on the map.
Have you ever taken a close look at the HALO games and wondered what the specifications of a weapon or vehicle are? Maybe you didn’t know or can’t remember which faction uses the D77-TC Pelican Dropship or what SOEIV is the acronym for, that’s where the guide can help. Each item has its own page with a statistics box telling which games it was featured in, a brief description and any other relevant facts of interest.
Everyone knows Master Chief and what he looks like, what the guide will show and tell you is his full name, rank and even the information about his armor can be found. If it’s in HALO, it’s in the Essential Visual Guide, every weapon, vehicle and person has their stats in there along with a proper, full colour image to show you who or what the information is about. What’s good about the guide is it doesn’t go over the top with the images and text, it’s nicely laid out and easy to read while providing everything you’re looking for.
If you ever needed an A to Z of everything HALO, you will find it in this book. There’s a glossary/contents page at the beginning, but that really is more for reference than anything since it’s all in alphabetical order, from Air Assault Armor to Zanzibar, literally. Trivia buffs would love a book like this, it answers questions even some of the most hardcore fans may not even know and what makes it even better is that it’s actually a good read.
You may not think that a book just filled with images and nerdy facts would be that readable, to the average/casual gamer, maybe not as they’re not interested in the technicalities of who or what they’re controlling and shooting with. To gamers that like to know about just how indepth developers go when creating games, it’s an almanac to the world beyond the pixels and polygons with an insight to what things look like on their own and in-game.
Collector’s of videogame literature would be foolish to miss out on quite a spectacular looking veritable HALO Bible, a very worth addition to anyones library.