Halo ODST: Hands-on with the new killer co-op mode

Despite what you’re likely to hear over the coming weeks, ODST’s Firefight isn’t just Horde from Gears of War 2 in first person (the popular opinion among our fellow games journos at a recent Halo event). No, it’s Horde, COD Zombies and Valve’s undead co-op shooter wrapped up in one Shock Trooper-shaped package.

Above: Amazingly, adding these elements pretty much gives you Firefight

Aside from the exciting new co-op, we also saw a brief demo of 'The Rookie', the game's first campaign level. You can read more about it in our campaign preview. It was also interesting to hear the Shock Troopers' leader Buck, played by Firefly's Nathan Fillion, referring to the forthcoming Halo Reach like it was a previous battle.

We're still more excited about Firefight, though. And below you'll find out why this new mode, which throws more Covenant cronies at you in 20 minutes than all of Halo 3, could be the best part of ODST.

It throws loads of alien
a-holes at you Horde-style

Like Marcus Fenix and fellow beefy space chums’ addictive online game, Firefight pits you and three fellow Troopers against endless numbers of Covenant scum. Each round throws fives waves of progressively tougher baddies at you. The only goals: to survive, while winning as many points as possible by murdering everything in your sight.

The maps are a mix
of all three games

The three shown so far range from compact, close-quarters combat in the Crater and Alpha site levels, to larger scale alien annihilation in Security Zone. Getting swamped in the dark and cramped Crater reminds us of COD’s zombie assaulted houses. Best of all, you'll be able to mow down your murderous enemies with Warthogs in the largest maps.

You have to take risks
like in COD zombies

Just as in World of War’s Nazi Zombies, surviving is all about taking gambles to get the best weapons. In COD, the risk is leaving your window unguarded while you have repeated (i.e. naughty) spins on the lucky dip weapons box to get better guns. In ODST, it’s risking your squad’s limited number of lives to nick the Brute Chieftains’ Gravity Hammers and Fuel Rod Cannons.


  • oreomonkey - July 27, 2009 2:31 a.m.

    Oh Course, I get booted to the next page where no one will see my question, go figure.
  • oreomonkey - July 27, 2009 2:30 a.m.

    OKay, I have been a member for AT LEAST 6 months and I'm tired of guessing, wth does "RE-CAPTCHA" MEAN?!?!?!
  • w40kfanatic - July 27, 2009 12:46 a.m.

    i cant wait for this game to come out. and for all you people out there who read this just to make fun of the game you need to just go away because nobody needs you talking bad about something. im sure if games had feelings they would hate you too. and firefight looks great, i cant wait to get this game.
  • JC182 - July 27, 2009 12:15 a.m.

    I can't wait for this game to come out
  • freakinJINJO - July 26, 2009 6:10 p.m.

    Just preordered this game. It looks great and alot like the original Halo: Combat Evolved which is what started it all. The Firefight mode looks to be the best part no arguments there. I'm sure I'll be spending alot of my time on that Live! lol it will rock and everyone knows it
  • CheesySnow - July 26, 2009 5:19 a.m.

    I swear, if Bungie doesn't stop making such AMAZING games, they really will take over the world. This is an instant pre-order for me. This article just adds to my hype. Thanks Gamesradar!
  • Hexar - July 26, 2009 4:52 a.m.

    Can't say it looks impressive. I really fail to see how it combines all of the elements of those other games other than the larger objectives that they all happen to share. But moving between points in L4D and saving buddies is a far cry from a game where you're not going to be pounced and need an actual hand from another player. It's players all shooting at monsters that come in an endless swarm. If this is the best that ODST then I'll gladly be leaving this one behind with all of the other shallow games this company produces.
  • ChewedAlfredo - July 26, 2009 2:59 a.m.

    aaahhhh yes. i want
  • TheWebSwinger - July 26, 2009 2:09 a.m.

    Yes, it is an ugly game, isn't it?
  • Rhesus - July 26, 2009 1:52 a.m.

    Hey, if all these other games are successful, this should be too...right?
  • Supermanoh - July 25, 2009 8:41 p.m.

    I just blew a load in my shorts. For Reals. I enjoyed horde, with its ridiculous array of monsters, but with so little variety... oh who cares, I'm gonna buy it anyways. The weapons will make up for it. Re-Captcha: morning wood. ... what?
  • MmmmBeetus - July 25, 2009 6:52 a.m.

    Reach is the battle the Pillar of Autumn is fleeing in the beginning of Halo 1.
  • Cwf2008 - July 25, 2009 2:20 a.m.

    @Goldenme: Then let me be the dibshit to say it: Gaylo Gaylo Gaylo. Now that thats out of the way, This looks like shit. Seriously all Bungie did was rip off everything from those other games. Fuck you Bungie, and fuck you for milking the Gaylo franchise...sorry i mean juggernaut
  • Doctalen - July 25, 2009 1:43 a.m.

    God damn it I hate it when game developers do a good job, it leaves my wallet empty. I am going to buy this game then immediately afterwords fill my wallet with coins and ones to make me feel rich.
  • GoldenMe - July 25, 2009 12:48 a.m.

    I like Halo, so I'll buy this. Nuff said. Same with Modern Warfare 2, Bioshock 2, L4D, etc. And inb4saying"gaylo", because we all know that there are dipshits out there that are going to say it.
  • Dill - July 24, 2009 11:49 p.m.

    Lol. "Just as in World of War’s Nazi Zombies..." World at War*
  • Koouunn - July 24, 2009 11:12 p.m.

    only a few more months to go before i have this game : P
  • infected123 - July 24, 2009 10:26 p.m.

    im with defguru 777 on this issue. this may have been a massive lie from some fanboy as it was just told to me by some guy on a matchmaking game but wasnt the whole survive against waves of enemies idea from one of bungies really really old games like marathon or myth or something?
  • Defguru7777 - July 24, 2009 9:43 p.m.

    I'm looking forward to this almost as much as the campaign. I'm also one of those gamers that really doesn't care about graphics (unless they're horribly bad). Also, Reach did take place before the whole trilogy...
  • TeragRunner - July 24, 2009 7:42 p.m.

    I'm not a Halo fan but this one looks good. I'm going to read some reviews and maybe rent it.

Showing 1-20 of 46 comments

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