Halo 2 Vista, is a ported PC version of Halo 2 by Hired Gun for use on the Windows Vista operating system exclusively and as a release title for the "Games for Windows" category. The release date was originally planned for May 8, 2007. However, the release date had been delayed to May 22, 2007 because the team needed "to make some improvements to the install experience and address other technical issues." However, release dates had been erratic, as Australia had publicly available copies, and some stores in the United States were selling copies as well. Microsoft had stated that the release date had been pushed back one final time, due to partial nudity found in the Halo 2 Vista Map Editing Kit, making the release date May 31 for the United States. It's multiplayer server list was going to be shut down in February 2013, but was extended to June 2013 while they discuss the feasibility of keeping the server list.
Halo 2 Vista has been reworked graphically for the PC, including high-resolution textures and support for very high resolutions. While the single player campaign does not differ from the Xbox version, they can earn firstly tried and all new single player and multiplayer achievements. One of the selling points of Halo 2 Vista is an included map editor. It has include the same programs as previously used in the Halo Editing Kit and also includes a pre-made "custom" map by default, named Example, which was made for players to observe as an example for making their own custom maps.
A new ability pushed by the Microsoft team is a feature called "Tray and Play". It is an attempt to emulate the ability of consoles to instantly play new discs in a DVD Drive without installing them. It allows the end-user to play the game as it is installing.
Halo 2, being a release title of Games for Windows, includes support for the Live for Windows system. It intertwines with the Xbox LIVE system, allowing communication with someone who has an Xbox. However, cross-platform play is not supported (this feature was planned). The interface is similar to that of the Xbox 360 dashboard. Instead of using peer to peer matchmaking, players will be able to create dedicated servers, which are created with a program that comes with the disc.
Gamertags, which are used on Xbox Live, are also used on Live for Windows. If a player were to have an Xbox Live gamertag, they would be able to log on using that. Otherwise, a free account can be registered for a player. Players can also match up in parties, and the party leader can specify maps and game types to play on the go.
The minimum system requirements to run Halo 2 on Windows Vista is a Windows Experience Index of 3.0. The recommended system requirements is a WEI of 5.0. Users can play the game with a rating of less than 3.0 but they will have to reduce graphics quality in order to run the game smoothly. The game can be set on different levels of detail (low, medium, or high) to change performance and appearance. Anti-Aliasing and resolution can be changed, as well.
- Requires Windows Vista or 7
- 2 GHz Pentium 4 Class Processor (or x64)
- 1GB of RAM
- 7GB of hard drive space(the Dedicated Server and Map Editor require additional hard drive space)
- Nvidia 6100/ATI x700 video card or above
- DVD-ROM drive
- DirectX® 9.0c or later (included on the DVD)
- Broadband Internet access for Windows LIVE™ multiplayer gameplay
Halo 2 Vista was considerably less popular than the Xbox version of the game. Besides selling incredibly low due to the negative reception of Windows Vista, it also was far less highly rated than the Xbox version. The game netted a mere 72% from Metacritic, a site which regulates and moderates reviews from other websites. Game Informer cited the outdated graphics and lack of innovation, which they said made the game feel "too outdated for a next-generation PC game, especially compared with how stunning Halo 2 had been on Xbox".
Halo 2 Vista was made to be even more unpopular, when it lacked basic features like online co-operative gameplay or other game modes, which were to be included in Halo 3 for Xbox 360. Halo 2 Vista's Dedicated Server had been severely stripped down of its important features which were part of Halo: Combat Evolved's Dedicated Server commands.
- Achievements were included with the PC version of Halo 2, though they can only unlock while you are logged into Games for Windows Live. These Achievements are shown on your Live profile and go towards your Gamerscore, just like Xbox 360 games.
- You can view your achievement progress through your Xbox 360 Live account.
- Halo 2 Vista is the first and only game thus far to feature Tray and Play.
- Halo 2 Vista is also compatible with Windows 7 and Windows 8.
- Although Halo 2 Vista was for Windows, the menu instruction (e.g. "press A button") is still the same with the Xbox version. It shows that Halo 2 Vista was only ported directly, unlike Halo PC.
- It is suspected that the Halo 2 Editing Kit has had many features disabled or deleted, which would disallow all types of custom tag creation, as of now there has been no custom map that has been created with custom player models, scenery/objects, scripts.
- http://www.monstrmoose.com/MMrepository/index.html Custom Maps By H2MT (Halo 2 Map/Mod Team) Various users of the community of Halo 2 Vista have helped bring a new experience for Halo 2 Vista. New Vehicles, Weapons and Maps are being made and have been made by the Team and will continue to work on making things for the game and releasing what we have done for the public to use, so that way it's easier for a new comer to make maps. We want the editing side of Halo 2 Vista to be easier for everyone and we wont keep anything hidden or for ourselves. Being open to the community creates a strong community.
- Halo 2 Vista was rated M for Violence, Language, Blood and Gore, and also Partial Nudity, which the Xbox version lacked. It turns out that a bug in a .ass error appeared to show the butt of a naked man. This can be removed simply with a patch downloadable from the Halo 2 Vista website.
- Halo 2 Vista requires at least 7 Gigabytes of hard drive space to run, a possible 7 reference.
- 343 Industries announced that the Halo 2 Vista servers would be disabled on February 15, 2013. However, this has currently been delayed to June 2013, to "investigate further support options".
- Bungie's Announcement
- Halo 2 Vista: The Inside Scoop
- Modacity (formerly h2vista.net), a fansite dedicated to modding Halo 1 CE
- Rework3d (formerly halomods.com), Modding Wiki for Halo 2 Vista
- Halo Maps, an archive of Halo 2 Vista maps and tools
|Halo trilogy||Halo: Combat Evolved • Halo 2 • Halo 3|
|Reclaimer trilogy||Halo 4 • Halo 5 • Halo 6|
|Other Halo Games|| Halo Wars • Halo 3: ODST • Halo: Reach|
Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary
|PC/Mac||Halo PC • Halo 2 Vista|
|Cancelled Titles||Halo: Chronicles • Halo MMO • Halo DS|