I know, I know, I'm not the same zen master of FPS warfare that Jim is. However, I do like a good war every now and then, so I approached your regular Battlefield Reporter to swap columns with him. He graciously agreed, and now I can share with you my thoughts on another board game, this time set in the combat-heavy Halo universe: the Halo Interactive Strategy Game.
Ever since we pulled Halo 3 out on a snow day last school year, our family has been transformed into Halo fanatics. Halo Wars, ODST, a few action figures, and most recently Halo Legends have only served to invigorate our fervor. It was with very little hesitation that we nabbed a copy of the Halo Interactive Strategy Game from the shelves of our local Toys R Us. It was on clearance for $11, that's a no brainer!
As you can see from the picture, there's lots of Halo-themed plastic goodness in the box. An impressive, but somewhat generic set of map pieces allows you to construct your own battlefield. Fifteen miniatures, similar to the little plastic army men of youth, fight against one another in deadly combat. The Covenant are represented by the Arbiter, two Elites, two Brutes, and three Grunts. The UNSC forces include Master Chief, three other Spartan II soldiers, and three Marines. While the little figures do have a "pew pew pew I shot your guy!" appeal, they fall far short of miniatures in other similar boardgames, such as Heroscape.
Each type of character is represented by a card, which gives all the relevant stats for the unit. Move shows the number of squares your character can travel in one turn. Shield is the number of dice you roll on defense, while melee is the number of dice you roll in combat with an adjacent unit. Strike is the ranged combat stat, and you roll a die for each point in strike for your character and the weapon, combined; for example, Master Chief rolls six dice to attack with his assault rifle. Energy is your basic health/hit point value. Once your unit's energy is depleted, he's goes back in the box until next time. It's worth noting that in the normal game, energy is not used, so you have one hit KOs.