Few games have dominated, or captured imaginations, quite as much as Halo. With so much to explore within its mythos, it is therefore unsurprising that it should also spread its tendrils into other media. The universe created by Bungie is so vast that it almost demands further exploration, and undoubtedly supports stories that add depth and texture.
Gathered together on this new Blu-ray are seven such stories, each created by a different filmmaker, with each revolving around the central figures from the games. And they are impressive, but there is little doubt who these are for.
With every story comes a different style of animation, all beautifully created to best convey both the beauty and the horror of the universe. And the stories are interesting to a point, with different aspects and “morality messages” delivered largely with subtlety and style. The problems come from the prior knowledge required to fully appreciate what you’re watching. If you’re a passing visitor to the Halo world, perhaps someone who has played games in the past from time to time, much of the mythology referred to will provide more questions than answers.
For those viewers, the extras will provide the greater interest. Two prologue animations detail the history of the Halo universe, providing backstory and filling in many gaps, although not always enough to make some of the stories fully relevant. But the most watchable inclusions are the mini-documentaries – the making-of pieces if you will – with interviews from all the creative people behind the games. These provide an insight into how one of the most successful game series ever created came into being, and how it is has continued through various sequels and incarnations.
So, one for the hardcore fans then? Well, yes. If you are, or know of someone fully embedded in this world, then this anthology would make an excellent addition to the collection. Those less committed may still find it interesting, and although it may well make you want to dust off your old Xbox and check if the original game still works, it will provide little more than a mildly entertaining couple of hours viewing.
HALO: LEGENDS (2010) / CERT: 12 / DIRECTORS & SCREENPLAY: VARIOUS / STARRING: LUCI CHRISTIAN, ATSUKO TANAKA, JOSH GRILLE, JOVAN JACKSON / RELEASE DATE: OUT NOW