When Halo 4 was first released it only allow us access to one chapter of the cooperative game type Spartan Ops. Set to continue the story after the events of Halo 4 Spartan Ops placed you and three friends in control of 4 Spartan IV’s known as Crimson Team. As Spartans you would think that the missions would be incredible feats that would require nothing less than the best soldier's humanity could muster, unfortunately this is not the case. While the cinematic scenes that act as the beginning of each of these chapters deliver a decent story that fulfill in continuing the story of Halo 4, the missions themselves are nothing but a tawdry combination of simple missions. Spartan Ops entices you with its beautifully decorated cinematic scenes but delivers a hollow experience.
As a member of Crimson Team it’s your job to protect the USNC scientist, repel hostile forces and uncover any significant Forerunner artifacts to be analyzed. The story attempts to build itself up by providing a collection of old and new characters from both the campaigns to entice the player. It was wonderful seeing Dr. Halsey once again and seeing how her actions, as well as the fate of the fanatical Covenant, play out keeps. These things kept me invested in the story.
Each of the 5 episodes has an original opening cutscene that continues the story after main campaign. These are the highlight of the entire season and showcase the fruit of your labor in every mission. The quality of each scene is rendered and showcase the impressive presentation that Halo 4 is now known for. It’s a shame that the missions don’t share the same stellar quality.
Once you have boots on the floor you and three other players will have to navigate each environment with your custom made Spartan IV. Don’t expect any variety in the environments, all the missions will consist of the same repetitive settings. Objectives are given to you by your handler Commander Palmer through a overhead display and won’t have you taking on any impressive tasks. Most of the time you’ll repel Covenant and Promethean forces while halting to press the occasion switch. Sometimes the developers attempt to stray from this formula by providing vehicles but it only acts as a catalyst to the rest of these missions.
The story of Spartan-Ops is the only thing currently worth experiencing. Most of the time I was treated to a series of bland missions and well-made cutscenes that fails to create anything worth engaging. It’s understandable to see such quality with these missions because they are given without any extra cost but it doesn’t cloud the issues. Perhaps the next season in January will address these issues but for now it’s nothing but a free set of missions.