5 Quick Ways To Make Anyone Better At Halo: Reach Multiplayer (That You Might Never Have Even Thought Of)
Have you ever looked at that negative kill/death ratio beside your name after a match and sighed with frustration, just to glance up at the guy’s name up top to see that +20 beside it? How in the world? you ask yourself.
There are a lot of things that make a person proficient at playing a First Person Shooter: skill, hand eye coordination, knowledge, intelligence, and for some just more time to practice. But, unfortunately, we don’t all have that kind of coordination, knowledge of the game, or time to spend. Sometimes it’s an hour after/before work, a weekend get-a-way from the frustrations of life, or just something you do because there’s nothing better to do.
Regardless of what your situation is there are still some quick things you can do to make yourself a better Halo: Reach player. There’s no substitute for solid practice and skill, and these by no means will be winning you any tournaments (Well, they might, you never know), but these quick tips certainly should give your kill to death ratio a nice boost, even if it is only against your friends on the weekend.
1.) PLAY ON A SMALLER TV
So you dished out a lot of money for that really big HDTV sitting in your living room with the absolute best picture quality in the industry. Guess what? It could be a huge detriment to your Spartan adventures, in more ways than one.
The first thing to remember is that a lot of HDTVs, especially older models, have a projection and display lag that older standard televisions don’t have. Even smaller HDTVs succumb to this problem as well. There’s no lag, you say. Well, usually it’s in the milliseconds, but it is there, and it can get you killed. Even though everything seems to be running perfectly smooth and beautiful to you, you might be a tenth, fourth, or even half second behind all the action. Now that’s a little unfair to you don’t you think?
The second thing to keep in mind about larger TV’s is that some people find it much, much harder to aim on. Doesn’t make sense does it? You’d think the bigger your reticule, the larger the target, the easier they’d be to hit right? This is rarely the case actually. Larger TVs can be disorienting when aiming, especially in tight situations. Also, widescreen ratios can make aiming left and right feel different than aiming up and down, because the amount of visual area isn’t even.
The solution? Play on a smaller TV. Or play on a standard definition television. Or, better yet, both. Some people refuse to play Halo on a TV larger than 27”. So get that old TV out of storage, throw it in a corner, and plug that Xbox into the back. You might think that this sounds absolutely ridiculous, but give it a try for one of your Halo sessions and see if you don’t find making headshots, or just aiming in general, much easier.
2.) DON’T RUN DOWN THE MIDDLE OF HALLWAYS
Believe it or not this is a very frequent problem that is very rarely ever addressed, and without even thinking about you may unknowingly be causing yourself some extra deaths. The good thing is there’s a very simple solution to the problem.
When running down any hallway, platform, walkway, building, etc. don’t run directly down the middle of the hall. Run against one of the walls. If you absolutely MUST run down the middle of a hall; crouch.
This serves a dual purpose. The first, and most important, is that your teammates won’t be shooting you in the back. If you’re stepping back and forth in the middle of the hallway you’re unknowingly creating an awesome meat shield for the other team. Your teammates will either be unable to line up a proper shot because you keep putting your back in their way or they’ll just be shooting you in the back—neither of which is very helpful to you.
The other purpose it serves is to ensure your teammates are giving you assistance. When there is less of you to shoot at it means there’s more of the enemy to shoot, and when there’s more of the enemy to shoot there’s more of the enemy dead.
This is especially important for snipers. The absolute worst thing you can do is block your sniper’s view. You lose the asset of one of the game’s most powerful weapons and you risk having them accidentally shoot you, which in most cases will probably ensure your death.
So get in the habit of pressing yourself against the side of hallways. After awhile it should become second nature, and you’ll benefit greatly from it.
3) GO WIRED AND FIRST PARTY
Try giving a wired controller a spin. And no, the cords you plug into wireless controllers to charge them don’t count. I mean an actual wired controller.
It may be annoying to have to deal with a cord stretching from your system to your hand, but most gamers have lived with it for years, and it might just help your game. Wired controllers generally have better response times, don’t ever need to be recharged, don’t accidentally shut-off for various reasons, and they don’t have that bulky battery pack on the back. Wired Xbox controllers also have a slightly better directional pad, which isn’t really important for Halo, but it is when it comes to fighting games and the like.
Also, it’s advisable to purchase an actual Microsoft 1st party controller. Third party controllers have a history (on every console since the dawn of time) of breaking easily, not working properly, etc. There have even been reports of some overheating/melting. Plus a lot of them aren’t comfortable to hold, or have awkward button placements and shapes. Sure, they may glow and look cool, but what’s the point if they don’t work?
P.S.: They’re cheaper than wireless controllers too.
4) CHANGE YOUR SENSITIVITY
Being able to aim and turn quickly isn’t always a good thing. Being able to aim for the head efficiently however, is. A quick run to options menu will allow you to change the sensitivity of your aiming. Default is 3, but that’s even too fast for some people. If your shots keep going all over the place try kicking it down a few notches, especially if you find yourself playing on a larger TV. On the other hand if you find it absolutely too slow try kicking it up a notch or two.
Just remember to never force yourself to try to adjust to a higher sensitivity. Play on the setting that is right for you and can give you good consistency. Constantly changing and trying to be “faster” can throw you off and set your game back.
5) IT’S NOT ALWAYS ABOUT THE KILL
Remember, just because you think you can get a kill doesn’t mean you should. In fact in any team slayer type variant it’s much more important to not die, than rack up a lot of kills. As long as you can manage to stay positive, you’re helping your team toward victory. If you get 20 kills and 30 deaths, you didn’t do nearly as well as the guy who got five kills and no deaths.
Now that’s not to say there aren’t times when charging in like a fool isn’t helpful. If your death means someone on your team will get away with the flag or be able to successfully plant a bomb, by all means, human meatshield. If you get yourself killed but managed to take down a tank in doing so, or strip the opposing team of a power weapon or critical position, you’ve done your team a huge service. In team games there’s no room for selfishness—do what you have too.
That being said; don’t be selfish with your kills. Never consider anything “my kill”. If someone on your team gets a kill, even if you did everything but land the final shot, be happy, because it all goes toward your victory. Even if you don’t get a single kill, but rack up 30 assists and your team wins, you did your part. Don’t be discouraged if you’re continually getting assist. Also, don’t be afraid of “stealing” your teammate’s kills. If there’s an enemy on the battlefield; shoot it. If you end up getting a lot of assist this way give yourself a pat on the back; it means you’re playing as a team. If your teammates complain that you’re stealing all their kills then you might want to think about finding new teammates.
And no, sacrificing yourself or only getting assist won’t do a lot to help your K/D ratio, but it will make you a better team player, and good teams are hard to beat! Even a team of terrible players, working together and communicating effectively, can be a deadly force to reckon with.