More Halo 2 Gushing

. . . but not about the game itself. I was just browsing around “”:, where (among other things) you can view stats for all your games played online and even _look at maps of the levels to see where you scored kills and were killed_. Freaky and cool.

More importantly, the whole website reinforces what I had assumed from such a great pair of games: these guys are brilliant. It hit me most reading something innocuous enough — the “weekly update”: page where they answer reader mail. First of all, it’s cool that they do that at all, especially every week. Second of all, the answers to the questions — especially the first couple — clearly show that the designers have thought long and hard about this game and how to make every aspect of it work as well as it possibly can. And they’re willing to talk frankly and articulately about their design decisions and the rationale behind them.

The Bungie guys understand that good programmers and artists can make a great game, but it also takes dedication to the fans and ongoing development to make that great game a cultural phenomenon. They did it once, and they’re doing it again.