Halo Reach is slowly teasing us since its announcement last year. It started off slowly working up to the big release, now revealing character sexes, game upgrades from the rest of the series, and a 7 minute titillating video showing off some Firefight 2.0 moves. Kotaku.com had a bit of a hands-on session explaining a lot of the co-op changes, as well as the gender roles of the new Reach universe.
One of the key points is the campaign's difficulty, which, in a change from recent Halo games, gets tougher if more than one person is playing it.
This is something we're seeing with a lot of co-op games, and makes games less "boring" as it were, but also adds the challenge of getting those Legendary difficulty achievements. Before it was no big thing to get a group of four together to tackle some campaign missions to pick up a Legendary achievement, but now - It's Legendary times four (or however many players you have with you), which could potentially be the most brutal Halo has ever been to us.
If there was drop-in/drop-out in the campaign the difficulty would scale based on how many people join or leave the room. Instead, with Reach the difficulty goes up on levels that you play co-op in, but they'll return to normal if a player resumes the campaign single player. And yes, you read that correctly - still no drop-in/drop-out for the campaign.
Co-op will also be the only place to play any kind of space combat, as the one-and-only spaceship mission in the campaign warp it's way to the game's popular versus modes. The spaceship sequence is essentially a defense mission where you pilot a small ship around a space station, and fend off an onslaught of Covenent ships.
The space battle was fun, and not that different from some of the other aerial sequences in Halo. Jarrard said this will be the only spacecraft battle in the campaign and hopes it will benefit from one of the game's lead designers having worked on Crimson Skies. There is no spaceship mode in multiplayer, by the way, though Jarrard [Bungie] imagined that players could just shoot at each other in co-op if they really needed to.
As mentioned in the title we also get a bit of a gender upgrade. Your protagonists name is Noble 6, and you are able to choose which sex you would like to play as. Finally a chance to play as a woman, or a man in the campaign. Hopefully the armor will reflect this just a bit - the multiplayer Master Chiefs with girlie voices and sturdy pectorals are a bit creepy.
The final adventure we'll leave you with is one of Reach's upgraded Firefight mode. Firefight will feature drop-out co-op, but won't let players drop-in at random. Otherwise, Firefight 2.0 just looks absolutely gorgeous so far. We can't wait to stand our own against hordes of enemies on the yet unexplored planet Reach.