Hello friends and fellow Earthwalkers. We have been checking out some of the action in Halo wars 2. So far we are liking it. The online battles are big and explosive just like we hoped. The size of the maps are large enough to allow retreat and recovery, flanking and distractions. We do seriously hope that the developers made their maps with our feedback in mind. What can be confirmed is that the game has a lot going on and there is so much to take into account when in matches.

The maps have multiple things on it. There are supply crates and locations that once captured grant you additional energy. These two in particular are incredibly important. Get your crates as fast as possible and make sure to at least capture the energy points on your side of the map otherwise you will be at a medium sized disadvantage. Some maps have additional things on them to make things more interesting. We hope some maps have structures like ones that increase population or that giant covenant cannon thing. Off course they have to be balanced though.

There are lots of options in matches due to the large amounts of units, and leader abilities at your disposal. What’s really great is that now you can see what each units strengths and weaknesses are from a quick glance. They have a colour coded: red, amber, green and black system to show how well they fight against unit types. Amber means normal, green means very good, red, means very bad while black means can’t do anything. For example the ‘Cyclops’ unit (from what we remember) will have orange for infantry, green for vehicle and black for air. This means that Cyclops are alright against infantry, great against vehicle and can’t do anything against air. This makes understanding units and deciding what to build much easier and quicker.

We do wish that they kept the leader power skill tree look, which was in the first beta, instead of the wheel but that’s the decision they made. Maybe it’s because everyone is use to the wheel from the first Halo wars. It’s still nice but the skill tree looked much cooler and new. There are lots of abilities to unlock and use. As you kill units, capture energy locations, upgrade, basically do useful things in matches you will be awarded with skill points that you can spend to unlock leader powers like eradication or specific upgrades like making your units move faster. This is one of those decisions that are actually strategic. First of all choose what suits your style or the type of strategy that you are going for in the match. Next thing to think about is the situation of the match. For example your enemy may have a large army and you need to help thin them out so you may unlock mines to do damage as they approach you. Or maybe close air support to deal big damage to all their units. Or at the start of the match you get the upgrade that increases infantry speed so you can capture areas and get supply crates before the enemy. Think carefully instead of just picking whatever seems cool.

Seeing Decimus getting dropped in for the first time was quite cool to see. He has a ton of health, comes with a shield and does all kinds of destruction. He’s like a combination of the ‘War Lord’ from halo wars 2 and the ‘Brute chieftain’ from halo wars 1. He pulls you in and greets you with a nicely crafted hammer. We believe that their are hero units and then there are super units (they may be called ultimate units now). So the War lord and Spartans are powerful hero units but ultimate units like Decimus and Condows are things that terrorise the battlefield and strike fear into the hearts of players. Don’t even call their name or they might just show in your room (made you look). We believe the best thing to do is to get your ultimate unit as quickly as possible while not neglecting everything else like resource and unit management. 

Seeing the amount of leader abilities, the upgrades and everything else that’s going on shows that game is, just as I hope, more strategic and fights can almost easily go either way. Games should always have a way that allows players to forma a comeback, even if it is a small chance. There are leader abilities that can wipe out or heavily damage entire armies. There are units that can hold of many units while your army can retreat and heal up. There are options here and we love that. From what we can see, we am loving how Halo wars 2 is turning out and want to see what else happens with this game.

This is just some of our initial thoughts and views of the game and of what we know. Have fun with Halo Wars 2 and do the ‘Earth Walk’!

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The Halo wars 2 Blitz beta is continuing until the 30th of January. In case you didn’t know. Halo wars 2 is a halo RTS (Real time strategy) game that will be coming out on the 21st of February. So far the beta has been played by the Earthwalkers, especially X35 Himself and they all agree that the game so far is excellent with so many positives and little negatives. The beta is free and should just get it to at least try it.

Now Halo wars 2 is going for a more strategic approach to game play now. Much more than the prequel. In the prequel most people would get tanks with wolverines and that was pretty much it but in halo wars 2, you need keep an eye on your opponent, think fast, react fast and have strategies. Blitz is fast paced and requires you to use your cards wisely. Don’t just use a card just because it is there, especially if it is an ability card or a unit with special abilities. Then again, don’t hold on to cards that you don’t need at the time. There are many ways to go about this. First of all, there shouldn’t be any cards in your deck that you find not useful or wouldn’t use. Have cards that you know will come in handy or counter a certain situation on the battlefield. If you desperately need a card or need to get rid of a card, you can ‘cycle’ a card for a small cost of 5 energy. This most likely will be worth it but never cycle too much because small costs combined make a big cost. If you have unit card and don’t need it yet and it doesn’t cost much then just summon it in your base and leave it there for now. It’s always better to have an army in blitz so don’t cycle cheap cards.

You deck should always have cheap cost cards and high cost cards. Cheap cards because then you can have an army quite quickly and summon when needed like to collect energy for example. Big cost cards as they are the powerful units. If you are going to have too much of one, then make sure it too much of cheap as then you can have a easy to build large army. You deck should also have at least 1 or two ability cards like the ‘archer missiles’ or ‘cloak’. Abilities allow you to reveal your leader characters true powers which can make all the difference in a match once used effectively. You deck should also have a legendary unit to bring the pain. Each character leader has their own legendary unit. Atriox’s is ‘Atriox’s chosen’. Captain Cutter has ‘Spartan Jerome-092’. These units are powerful and very expensive. They almost make any battle in your favour but you must protect them. They aren’t invincible. We have seen players get excited about legendary units that they drop one in the middle of an enemy army and expects them to kill everything, instead just gets their legendary dead. It’s a waste. Have them lead a fight and when they take too much damage then return them to your base to get them healed up. There is no excuse, they even have shields so keep them alive.

Ability cards have one time use abilities that must be used strategically. You can’t afford to waste them or miss. For example a very strategic and powerful ability is the ‘MAC Blast’ card which allows you to “Launch a high damage slug to blast a target area”. This is a card you can activate, then aim and then fire. Use this to destroy that one pesky target that maybe is out of reach of your units that sit on a hill, like ‘Blisterbacks’ or ‘Kodiaks’. You could also just use this to damage and destroy a group of enemy units that have bundled up together. You could use your army to drive them into a corner and then fire the MAC gun. Do not use this on the ‘Condor’ or ‘Scarab’ as those super units are only temporary and will die eventually. Save it for the right situation. When you have powerful ability cards like ‘Boundless Fury’ and ‘MAC Blast’ you have to decide whether it’s better to use them or summon units because they have high costs and you could normally have 3 or two units instead. It’s up to you to know and judge the situation you are in to know what action you should take.

Some units are enhanced versions of the originals like ‘Ironclad Hunters’. They fight and attack in the same way but come with extra abilities. The abilities so far are: Guard, Blast, Detect, Rush, Reflect, Cloak, Rally, Shock, Shield, Support and Siphon. Guard means this unit will absorb all the damage your other units would have took, protecting them. Blast means that when they die a small circle area is glowing, soon an explosion will happen there damaging everything within. Detect means that unit can see and reveal nearby cloaked units. Rush means that unit is not effected by fatigue when summoned and can therefore fight at full strength straight away. Reflect means that unit returns half of the damage they take back onto an enemy unit. Cloak means when the unit is deployed (summoned) it is cloaked for 90 seconds it can’t be targeted but can still fight and move freely. Rally means that unit increases the damage  your ally units nearby can do. Shock means that unit reduces the armour of nearby enemy units making them weaker. Shield means that unit has a rechargeable shield like spartans in halo, the shield takes the hits before the health does and recharges when out of battle. Support means this unit doesn’t fight at all but instead can do things like heal units, protect or other cool effects. Siphon means that unit gains health equal to the damage it gives, sucking the life out of your enemies. These abilities are important and make huge differences in a match, so make sure to know them all and have some in your deck.

In every Blitz match you have to make collecting the energy drops a top priority. Sure they don’t seem to add much at all to your energy but it increases your energy rate. You have an automatic energy rate and the more energy you collect that rate increases much faster meaning you get to use your cards faster. Controlling the zones is important but not as important as the energy as control zones come and go throughout a match but with a higher energy rate than your opponent, you could summon legendary units and build armies much faster than your enemies and a bigger stronger army is what matters in halo wars 2, especially Blitz. Get the energy, even if it means the enemy gets 50 points ahead of you because they control to zones. There is time for a come back.

Each character leader is different and have access to certain cards that the others don’t get. Some leaders are more support type while others seem as more assault types; however all are powerful and dangerous enough to destroy the other in a fight. It comes down to the player, their armies and strategies which are all dependent on the leader. The ‘Ship master’ can start of with three ghosts, who aren’t the strongest units around but their speed cannot be matched so you can use them to zoom and beat your enemies to the energy drops. ‘Anders’ starts of with probably the strongest combination of units with two cyclops, two marines and a wolverine. That means she can counter air, vehicles and give infantry a fight. This means you could go straight for a control zone and most likely beat anyone who challenges you. Atriox has access to the ‘Eradication’ ability which literally destroys everything so it can be the move that turns the tide of a battle. ‘Isabel’ has the MAC Blast and lock down scorpion which weakens enemy units and her special units keep the enemy guessing. ‘Decimus’ has multiple siphon units and if you can keep them alive they become a real threat and hard to kill but abilities allow destroying the enemy much easier. ‘Captain Cutter’ has strong starting units and has powerful abilities making him a heavy assault type leader. You must check out the units that they have and the abilities to know what to do. The ‘Ship master’ has cloaking and steal abilities while ‘Atriox’ has the more straight forward approach and heavy abilities.

So firstly learn the character leaders and know their units and abilities. Quickly secure at least one control zone and then aim for the energy drops. Build an army. Do not let half your army get destroyed under no circumstances. Always bring your units back to base to get them healed up. Don’t over extend and do more than you nee to do. If you have the bigger army and have at least two of the zones then don’t over extend and risk units.

Now all that’s left to do is go into matches and practice. Have fun and don’t forget to do the ‘Earth Walk’! 


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Halo wars 2 is coming out on the 21st of February of 2017. Now almost every Xbox gamer knows about this game and most are looking forward to this. Especially since the beta came out last year. Halo wars 2 is a real time strategy (RTS) game where you get to control the forces of the UNSC and covenant. The events of halo wars 2 is set 28 years we believe after the the events of the prequel game. Captain Cutter and his crew are found over an ancient Forerunner haven called the ‘Ark’. Here they encounter probably the greatest threat to humanity… The Banished. The Banished are a dangerously powerful Brute faction lead by intelligent and fieerce warrior called ‘Atriox’. Can Captian Cutter survive against this new enemy?

X35 Earthwalker participated in the beta himself and says that he likes everything about the game but it does have some issues though but glad that they will be corrected in the real game. The graphics are a complete step up from the prequel game. The details to the units and structures are greater, showing great attention to design and detail. Even the way the units move now have been approved. If you paid attention to how the marines run and traverse through the battlefield you will see what we mean. The game had new units, which one of we and many other gamers have been wanting since the prequel. There is now a sniper infantry unit which has long range (obviously), high damage and their shots stun enemy infantry units for round about half a second maybe. they are perfect anti-infantry but swarms will easily destroy them. They also are cloaked meaning they can’t be detected by enemy units until they come into range and directed to attack snipers. There is also a flying heavy bombarding air unit call “Blisterbacks” which look like armoured beetles. They do single energy blasts from the air but have the ability to land on the ground and become an artillery unit, bombarding units and bases. X35 Earthwalker does want them to have increased damage as they currently are too weak and don’t have that much impact at all. There are more units for both the UNSC and Banished.

The two leaders that we know of so far is Captain Cutter and Atriox. Both don’t take non-sense from anyone. Captain feels very similar to the prequel and allows similar strategies. Most strategies revolve around the infantry and with there being more infantry units, and the fact that the marines actually are a threat now, this will work well. Snipers are great at neutralising enemy infantry from afar and delivering great pain to hero units. As Cutter you can pump out infantry fast and do pretty good rushes on the enemy, forcing them to panic and expel their resources quickly. Atriox is no slouch in the infantry department either but most strategies with Atriox revolve around the vehicles. The Banished vehicles are quite diverse and are solid for holding down a certain area and then making the push. The units with the banished seem more diverse and thus allowing more options and ideas for strategies and combinations. Once corrected, the Blisterbacks will be a nightmare for many players.

The game now has a ability upgrade screen that you access while on the field. Here you can spend points that you gather over time in the match to upgrade unit or character abilities which can really change the tide of the battle. Trust us on that. For example you can choose to have the ability to create a area of healing for your units and structures. You could get the ability as Cutter to place a turret where you want in a battle. Maybe to attack the enemy from behind or at an angle. You can unlock the famous mac blast which brings death to whatever it hits. In the beta though, the mac blast was far too weak and couldn’t even destroy a tank. Even the blast radius was pretty much a zero. They must change this. There is an upgrade on Atriox’s side where you can make all your units literally invulnerable for a period of time. We used this once and survived a mac blast and a pelican sweep special ability and still destroyed all enemy units and then the base but timing is everything with these abilities. The gameplay mechanics in this game make it so that every decision is more important than ever before. The game has become even more strategic. So you must keep track of your resource spending, what abilities you upgrade or unlock and when and how to use your unit abilities.

We must say though that the leader characters you select all have devastating abilities. Captain Cutter after following certain upgrade paths can have the ability to hell jump in veteran (have stars) units such as the cyclops, Odsts and more. It’s basically instant strong reinforcements that deal all kinds of damage. The other major ability is the pelican sweep that brings three pelicans that completely demolish everything with rockets blasts and heavy machine guns. Everything will die in a matter of moments. This can save your life. Atriox on the other hand have the  invulnerable ability that we mentioned earlier. This makes all your units invulnerable and take zero damage from everything while still being able to fight. The next major ability and by far our favourite in the annihilator which truly lives up to its name. It basically calls down 6 beams that slowly join together in the middle and explodes annihilating everything that was under, around or near the beam. This has even been used to wipe out an entire army leaving the enemy completely open to attack. It’s absolutely crazy. If only you could see our faces when we first used it and saw what it could do. These abilities aren’t to be messed with due to all having the ability to change the battle in your favour but once again, timing is everything. 

The is literally an improvement from the prequel is every way. The controls are still easy to learn and use. The graphics and sounds are wonderful even though this was all beta and not the released real thing. The story is definitely interesting and we want to know more. No unit in the game is useless or feels useless. The abilities are so diverse and very effective, like you would be crazy to not use them. The main problem about the game is having your brute champion unit trying to reach enemies to smash when all of a sudden you get hit by a sniper and he is stunned for a second and when he can move again, there are two more snipers who stun him. This repeats and your champion can’t do anything, Literally. It’s frustrating because it makes him useless. we hope they make the stun only effect regular units and not champion infantry. That what we think. The Blisterback needs damage increase, the mac blast needs increased damage and blast radius. Snipers should require players to be one tech level higher before allowed to create them in the match as all a captain Cutter player needed to win against Atriox is rush quickly with many marines and many snipers and they win. Atriox can’t do anything. Off course we found a way to counter this but it wasn’t easy and many don’t know the strategy we have created for this.

Fun fact. Did you know that X35 Earthwalker on the 20th of June 2016 at 14:05pm was in a match where his team mate left the match and it became a 1v2. He won the match as captain Cutter. We made a record of the match and know the names of all the players.

We are all looking forward to this game and what it will bring. We want to see the scarab, the other leader characters, the story and more. So far ‘343 Industries’ are doing an awesome job. Keep it up you guys. This game is definitely worth checking out.

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Warzone and Warzone assault in Halo 5 Guardians is pretty much the most popular multiplayer mode in the game. So far everyone we know likes it and plays it quite frequently. It’s like big team battle but with much more. Two teams of 12 battle it out on a constantly active battlefield. There are A.I enemies that cause trouble but grant points when defeated. There are 3 locations to capture. A big main one that usually is the center of the match and two smaller ones for red and blue team. Capturing these bases will get your team points and it’s an additional place where you can use your reqs (Requesitions).   

Reqs are the main features of Warzone. There are reqs for your armour (power ups), weapons and vehicles. Each one has to some extent the ability to even things up or turn the tide of a battle once used correctly. The reqs are ranged from common to legendary. The reqs also have levels signifying what level you have to be in order to use them. As you kill enemy spartans, A.I and complete objectives you gain points which will allow you to level up. Starting from req 1 which ends at req 9. Also most req cards have tiers as well with tier 3 cards being more powerful than the lower level tiers. Higher level tiers normally have extra abilities. The efforts of your team will contribute to your level as well. For example if anyone kills a boss then, you get points as well. This all adds up. So keep working together, keep slaying and doing well and you’ll get access to the most powerful reqs fast.

Vehicle reqs are most likely considered the most powerful as first of all, they are vehicles meaning, tougher to kill and unlimited firepower. There are so many vehicles to choose from and the choices only get more difficult as the match continues to change and depending on what your enemy has got on their side. You have fast traveling vehicles like warthogs, ghosts and gungooses. Warthogs have a driver, passenger and a gunner. That’s just a regular warthog, higher tier warthogs have a needler gun and shields while the oni warthog has explosive rounds. Heavy killing machines like tanks just straight up kill everything. Higher tier tanks have stronger armour, faster rate of fire and even an experimental laser firing tank. Flying vehicles have the clear elevation advantage combined with mobility. All flying vehicles are pretty much fast, hit hard and leaves quickly. Banshees swoop in bombs and then runs. Wasps are more like support vehicles for foot soldiers laying down light damage. All vehicles instantly gain all players attention (well they should). Make sure to take them out first.

Weapon reqs range from being completely annoying to down right dangerous. Everything from powerful pistols to rockets to sniper rifles. This means that weapons are the most versatile and can there fore change situations the most. For example if you need to clear out a small base owned by some spartans then a plasma caster is create as it can bounce around corners and explode very well. Higher tier plasma casters like the ‘White scar’ can turn shots into mines making some areas unavailable. Rocket launchers can do the job as well. Higher tier rockets can home in on vehicles, fire multiple shots and more. The sniper rifle can one shot spartans from anywhere as long as it hits the head. Req weapons get even better as their are some mythic reqs which are clearly in a league of it’s own. For example the ‘Nornfang’ is a sniper rifle that instantly kills any spartan it hits, even if you hit the toe, that spartan will die. Tartarus’s gavel is a gravity hammer that release shockwaves with each swing extending the range of devastation. Spank prime is a Rocket launcher is the ‘Spanker prime’ which increases jump height, movement speed and shield strength while equipped. There are more and they are all truly worthy of the name mythic.

Power up reqs are personal upgrades to your armour but are temporary. These are speed boost, over shields, active camo and damage boost. Speed boost increase your movement speed, reload speed and weapon switch speed. Over shields adds an extra layer of shields just like in previous halo games making you harder to kill. Active camo, camouflages your spartan making them near invisible but the fast you move the more visible you become. Damage boost increases the damage of your weapons, melee and vehicles. The scariest part is that each of these can stack to make them more effective, except for active camo and over shields. If you combine three speed boosts, you become super fast. your slide ability is drastically enhanced. You literally become lightning. Damage boost combined will really increase damage to the point where things just kill too fast. So imagine combining certain vehicle and weapon reqs with these armour upgrades. A sniper rifle with damage boost can become like a home made nornfang, able to one shot anyone it hits. An energy sword combined with speed boost makes a lightning fast swordsman. It’s up to you to create new combinations. 

Some reqs are outshined by others. For example there is no need to use a supressor when you could have a plasma pistol to take down shields or a open hand or closed fist bolt shot. They all kill faster than a supressor, even the higher tier one. You don’t A whip lash railgun almost always trumps any other req card in most situations at level 4. Who get a sentinel beam when the blood of suban kills faster and better. A rocket almost always wins. A appetite for destruction saw gun can’t stand up to any of the rockets, even at mid range. Some higher tiers of weapons are not that better at all. For example the hail storm (tier two needler) is better than the tier 3 needler (talon of the lost) in pretty much every way. The hail storm fires faster moving needles at a faster rate which track and home in better than talon of the lost. Most players we have asked can’t even figure out why talon of the lost is the tier 3. Even to this day even X35 Earthwalker doesn’t know why. This is something that needs to be sorted out though. Some req items aren’t that useful at all but that’s just some. We at X35 Earthwalker encourage all gamers to try them all and see what works best for them.

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The halo 5 ‘Monitor’s bounty’ came out on the 8th of December 2016. The big update on halo 5 is so far excellent. ‘343 Industries’ has done a lot of things right with this one indeed. Let’s start with the Warzone updates. The fact that they finally added difficulty modes that we can choose for Warzone firefight makes a big difference. There is now ‘heroic’, ‘legendary’ and the terrifying ‘mythic’ firefight modes. ‘Heroic’ is much easier and allows for casual games in your fight against both covenant and Prometheans alike. ‘Legandary’ is the mode we all know and love. Mythic is the mode that spartans have learnt to fear. It’s basically legendary but they have added some skulls from campaign mode into this, which makes all the difference here. In round one of firefight the skull tough luck is activated which means that all enemies will continually dodge grenades and don’t run away. Round two has tough luck and black eye which means that your shields never recharge until you melee an enemy (good luck doing that on legendary). Round three has tough luck, black eye and thunderstorm which means that all enemies have been upgraded. For example casual blue elites get promoted to red or above elites which have more shields and at times better weapons. Round four has the previous skulls plus catch which means that the enemies are now grenade happy, constantly using grenades. Round 5 has all the previous skulls plus mythic which increases the health of all the enemies, including the bosses!

We must say though that mythic firefight is really hard and creates a good challenge. Two team mates and I had tanks (one of them was a Hannibal scorpion) and were hitting the grunt mech boss hard and it was doing very little. Most likely because of the mythic skull. X35 Earthwalkers first attempt at this was a fail.

We was also very glad to see the grenade launcher from halo reach show up to warzone. This weapon makes handling those vehicles easier as when you hold the trigger and then let go, it becomes an emp grenade disabling all vehicles it hits. This weapon is also great for harassing enemy bases as you can bounce shots around corners to hit hiding Spartans who think they can recharge their shields. Not gonna happen. The second tier grenade launcher aka ‘Pro pipe’ is really cool and it adds more skill to the weapon. It has an enhanced bounce trajectory. Basically the grenade bounces towards enemies after hitting a wall or the ground. The sentinel beam from halo 3 is something I wanted for a long time in Warzone and it’s finally here, dishing out laser burns and death. I hope they bring a level 2 and 3 tier sentinel beam as the current one just makes enemies panic (as it should).

There is now also the Oni and Hannibal wasps (tier 2 & 3 wasp vehicles) which so far the most popular things that I see in the skies of Warzone matches. They aren’t too tough and just add more variety to the game. The designs look very nice, easy to identify them and there upgraded weapons look deadly enough. We like them, especially destroying them. We haven’t tried the anti-air wraith yet but seen it in action a bit. I hope the fuel rod shots home in on air. It looks vicious though and truly hope that it can clear the skies.

The update also brought in character voices like the monitor, grunt and buck from halo Odst. Basically when you have spartan Palmer doing announcements like a base has been captured or a boss appear, you can unlock and choose what voice you want. It’s a nice addition and idea (personally I just want the monitor voice).

They split up the game modes in arena into two groups: social and ranked. This makes things better, especially for newer players. Both have different types of game modes. So go take a look.

I must say though that even with all these added features and improvements they forgot to make the one thing that is truly needed.  A feature that allows us to sell multiple req cards at once instead of one by one which gets annoying as it is long. Please can this get changed.

Overall we are happy with this big update and want to see more in time. Keep up the good work 343 Industries, you are doing a great job. For more information check out the link below:

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