Gears of War and Halo are easily Xbox’s biggest titles throughout the years. Since Halo 1 on the original Xbox, it has been the company’s flagship title and both franchises have been at pretty much every E3 since their creation. These games have huge fan bases and sell their respective consoles, so of course they are always going to be showing them off and talking about them. Nothing was different at this years Microsoft E3 conference, as they were a highlight of the show once again. This will without a doubt be controversial but I think their showcases of these 2 games were easily the most boring.
It should be stated that if you play these game for the sole purpose of multiplayer either online or with your friends, then it’s totally understandable why you are excited for these games. But I know there are just as many people who play these games for the stories. As the years have gone by, Halo and Gears of War lost a lot of credibility when it comes to storytelling. And as the years have gone by, it becomes more and more clear that these franchises are never going to end. So how do you put faith in characters and a narrative that will never have a resolution? There are definitely games that have a story that are crafted to go on for an infinite amount of time, but Halo and Gears of War are not one of those stories. These two games have very defined narrative and characters but when the threat of franchises being never ending is looming over them, a lot of narrative elements cannot happen. No serious narrative development can happen to forward the plot towards any sort of end, which forgoes a lot of possibilities when crafting the story within the writing room.
Getting involved in a story mainly means that you’re in it for the journey along the way, but that journey means nothing if there is no end in sight, or ever for that matter. Yes, games and certain game narratives are built to never end; I’m not saying that Mario should stop saving Princess Peach from Bowser, but Halo and Gears of War are in a very different boat. It doesn’t matter why you play these games, if you enjoy them then go ahead and enjoy them. I just think that as the years pass, I lose more and more interest in them and they lose a lot of credibility when it comes to storytelling. But I will be realistic and acknowledge that these games are Xbox’s main money makers, so they are probably never going anywhere, and even if we think they are gone, they will just get rebooted years down the line. Gears of War releases September 10th this year, while Halo Infinite launches holiday 2020.