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Halo 3 vs. Call of Duty 4: The DLC Showdown

Joe: Call of Duty 4’s map pack gives you four new maps for 800 points. Halo 3’s DLC gives you three maps for the same price, but two of them are half-assed remakes of maps you’ve already played! Don’t even bother trying to call it “fan service,” it’s more like “fan abuse.”  I reckon the two remakes count as half a new map, so you’re really only getting one and a half maps compared to four for Duty.  The value proposition is clear: Call of Duty 4 is giving you new content for your money, while Halo 3 is just looking to squeeze more cash out of you.

Charlie: I can fudge math, too, you know. Let's see... Halo 3's Legendary pack offers three new maps. Avalanche, though, is easily large and diverse enough to count as two maps, so that brings the total up to four. Call of Duty 4's Variety pack claims to offer four new arenas, but Killhouse is barely half a map, so the real tally is more like three and a half.

There you have it. Four is clearly greater than three and a half. Halo wins!

(Plus, if Halo 3's past downloadable content is any indication, the Legendary maps will be available for free in mere months. Your move, Duty.)



Joe: As mentioned in my “Value” rant, two of Halo 3’s three new maps are remakes of maps from Halo and Halo 2. Blackout is Lockdown, and Avalanche is Sidewinder. Just toss in a Bubble Shield and charge 800 points: the suckers will buy anything! The coloration filters might be a nice touch for machinima makers, but they’re really nothing more than the silly cheats you get when you collect Intel pieces in Duty’s single-player campaign. So that’s not even very original, and doesn’t add anything substantial to gameplay.

Sure, Chinatown is based on Call of Duty 2’s Carentan, but Infinity Ward has transplanted it from 1940s France to modern-day San Francisco. Plus, the ambience and flow of gameplay is totally different because the game has evolved over time. Unlike Halo, which has barely changed through two sequels, so its stale knockoff maps play nearly identically to their predecessors.

Charlie: What Bungie has done with Blackout and Avalanche, the remakes of Lockdown (Halo 2) and Sidewinder (Halo), is most definitely fan "service," not "abuse." Experiencing these maps for a second time is like reuniting with an old and familiar friend... if that friend had won the lottery, got an expensive facelift and bought a whole mansion of cool new toys since the last time you saw each other. The designers have carefully recreated what you loved about the originals, while also fixing flaws, throwing in surprises and supersizing the entire damn thing to Halo 3 proportions. These are not lazy and lukewarm leftovers.

In addition, I'd argue that Ghost Town is far more original than anything in Call of Duty 4's set. You've already described it as Gears-like. I've also heard comparisons to Counter-Strike and - what do you know - the mighty Call of Duty itself. Ghost Town is a strange and wonderful anomaly in the Halo 3 universe. Call of Duty 4's Chinatown, Creek, Killhouse and Broadcast may look different than their predecessors, but they play like more of the same.

9 comments

  • codtools - March 16, 2012 8:13 a.m.

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  • CoD4Kamikazi - September 20, 2009 12:18 a.m.

    Obviously, CoD4 is at least 2x better than Halo 3? What does Halo have, like 23 weapons while CoD4, combined with perks, has the possibilities of well over 1,00,000 options to choose from, and seriously, since when can an assault rifle of any kind only be lethal from ten feet away? And besides, how many of you can say that even though there IS armor customization, you don't just automatically put on the Katana armor and Security, Hayabusa or Mark V helmet? None? I thought so. Even though CoD4 has Noob Tubers, Halo has way more whiny, spoiled and racist brats than any other game I have ever played.
  • Jake55648 - September 19, 2009 2:42 p.m.

    See The thing is that Halo gives you so much every day friends and others on line are adding stuff to the halo Universe. They make the game better for free. Also the idea that the old map remakes are ripping us off, every one had their favorite halo 2 map so why not re create it for us. I am more than willing to pay for things like that. Also with maps like foundery and sand box possibilities are endless I could do this all day. What does COD have??? A bunch of noob tubin ten year olds with a PTRS and Jugernaght. HALO WINS!!!!!!!!!!
  • battenfelder - September 18, 2009 11:45 p.m.

    personally i think Halo 3 is better. both games are increadible, but personally i like halo 3's story alot more, the armour customization, and the online play. CoD4 had great graphics and was more 'real' than halo, but halo just stuck with me more. i played CoD4 for four months then i got board, i still play all the halo games and enjoy them. and btw Cwf2008- Gaylo 3? wow, very clever. never heard that one before......
  • CoD4Kamikazi - September 22, 2009 11:54 p.m.

    Wow, cock of duty, never heard that before, and what are you complaining about, TREDD262? Prestige mode is a choice that you make, the game doesn't force you, and I like prestiging, it's way better to have to climb back up the level ladder than play with a bunch of down-grading 16 year olds, and yes I do hate Martyrdom also, but every game has it's flaws, but I find that Halo's are less subtle than CoD4's.
  • TREDD262 - September 21, 2009 2:25 p.m.

    I admit cock of doody 4 was fun until you get to lvl 55. Then it just gets repetitive and of course I could take the genius choice of giving up golden guns for a symbol. I also love running in the halls of vacant and running right over a martyrdom, which everyone uses.
  • CreeplyTuna - September 18, 2009 6:57 p.m.

    who cares about armor customization if (on team based game modes) you don't even see your color and stuff. and besides, whats better than customizing your guns to make them the killing machines you want?
  • handdestr - February 25, 2009 7:49 p.m.

    i think both games are great, but for online play, the maps, and the grasp on the littlest details like armor customization and other stuff like that, halo 3 i think is the better game
  • Cwf2008 - December 16, 2008 3:54 a.m.

    Well obviously Call of Duty 4 is a lot better than Gaylo 3 in gameplay, but for maps Call of Duty hands Gaylo 3 the final deathblow. And first

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