Being the Halo fanatic that I am, I decided yesterday to embark on an epic journey - completing the Halo: Reach campaign on Mythic Difficulty.
For anyone who doesn't already know, Mythic Difficulty is playing on Legendary difficulty, with all skulls on, scoring enabled, and with no saves or deaths. Many think this is insane, and so far only 11 individuals have completed the journey. There is a lot to learn from this experience for anyone interested in the Halo: Reach campaign, so I thought I'd share key moments of my experience with the community. Having a life outside of the Halo-universe, I don't have the time to hammer through all the details alone, so I'm following the Mythic Guide available at halo.bungie.org.
Winter Contingency: The first level
I gave this a run last night, and the first obstacle is getting used to having no indicators of any type on the screen. No radar, no health, no shields, no grenade counts, no ammo count... no reticle... no view of which weapon you're holding. Wow. Once I got used to that, things weren't too bad, especially since a lot of this first level is bypassing battles. Eventually, you get to the point where you have to kill all of the Covenant troops attacking an EVAC point, and this was where my journey became interesting. After failing once, I played a little more conservatively, and watched Carter and Jorge fighting away with Jun up in the sky, circling in a Falcon.
Things got exciting when I saw a grunt peg Jun's Falcon with a plasma bolt, dropping it out of the sky. Normally, you don' get to pilot any Falcons in this level, so I seized the opportunity. My initial thought was, "Sweet! Maybe I'll find a short cut by being able to fly myself to the next area." with a small hint of, "This is a bad idea, you aren't normally allowed to fly a Falcon... I wonder if there are any drawbacks here..." And there were. For one, the starting area is enclosed by invisible walls, so no shortcuts for me. Some breathtaking scenery from my aerial perch, but that's about it. While I was exploring, Jorge and Carter cleaned up the remaining Covenant forces, and I was notified that my current objective had been completed. Great! Realizing I had no alternatives, I returned to the EVAC point to progress the story.
Upon arriving though, I plopped down my borrowed Falcon and discovered I couldn't exit it. Furthermore, the 2nd Falcon with the rest of my team just sat there waiting. I suspect there is some code that prevents you from exiting once you enter a Falcon here, so that you can't hop out in the middle of the "cutscene" flight to the next area. But on top of that, since I was already in a Falcon, I couldn't trigger the cutscene by boarding one. FAIL.
After several more minutes of trying to find Covenant survivors (none) to help me exit my bird (by flipping it over upon a crash landing) and attempting to flip the bird myself, I began to accept that there was little hope for completing this run. Eventually, I resorted to shooting the 2nd Falcon with my chin-gun, pushing it along the ground until it plummeted over the cliff-side with the rest of my team, never to be seen again. In a final acceptance of my fate, I dramatically followed and called it a night.
Learning from my mistakes. Onward to another attempt!