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‘Halo’ versus ‘Gears of War’

Master Chief, or Marcus Fenix? It’s been an ongoing and ever-bitter debate in the gaming community as to which grizzled gunner reigns supreme over their respective plagues (Flood, Locusts, whatever). With opinions relatively split (one poll gave Halo the slight edge with 51% preferring their combat evolved), much credence has been given to the simple fact that Gears of War now outranks Halo on Xbox live–surely a just argument.
Marcus Fenix from Gears of WarMaster Chief from Halo

Then came the news last month that Marvel superstar Brian Michael Bendis is working on a Halo comic book. Titled Halo: Uprising, the story supposedly takes place between the unforgivable cliffhanger Bungie left us with in Halo 2 and Halo 3, due to be released in September. Not to be outdone, the latest Diamond Comics catalog dropped the bombshell that Boom studios too will be publishing an official Gears of War comic book, beginning with an issue #0 set to hit the stands in August.

So in the spirit of the ongoing rivalries between the two mega-titles, Comics Alliance presents you with a head-to-head appraisal of Halo and Gears of War comic book potential, after the jump.

BACKGROUND PLOT:

GoW: The soldiers of Delta Squad led by the fearless Marcus Fenix fight to save the human race from the evil subterranean Locust Horde who have taken over the planet Sera after a violent dispute between humans over a valuable source of energy.

Halo: The Master Chief and his A.I. mistress Cortana fend off the Covenant while trying to prevent a universal apocalypse by way of Halo–a giant artificial habitat designed to work in concert with other Halos to destroy the parasitic Flood by killing everything they feed on, namely us.

EDGE: While Halo‘s plot is certainly expansive and interesting enough to fill pages and pages with plot turns and side vignettes, I have to give the edge to Gears of War. If there’s one thing comics are great at, it’s drawing allegories to the real world we live in. The world that Gears of War presents is one devastated by the fruitlessness of a struggle over energy–a hypothetical that everyone living in this world should seriously consider.

VISUALS

GoW: Dark and gritty, Gears of War contains some of the most horrifying gaming imagery since Resident Evil, all in shades of gray.

Halo: If there’s one thing Halo could have done without, it’s red, yellow and blue bad guys firing every neon color of weapon under the sun.

EDGE: At the end of the day, Halo feels more like a cartoon than a comic. Not that there haven’t been spectacular visuals in the games–just look at the opening sequence in Halo 2–but Gears of War, in the hands of an artist like 30 Days of Night‘s Ben Templesmith, has the potential of being a beautiful bloodbath.

WRITER

GoW: Andrew Cosby, co-creator of the Sci-Fi channel series Eureka

Halo: Brian Michael Bendis, writer of Powers as well as half of Marvel’s lineup

EDGE: I don’t have anything against Andrew Cosby–I’m sure the five people that watched Eureka really loved it. And he did put out 2 Guns, which was a pretty decent comic. But come on–Bendis is one of the greatest contemporary comics writers. Cosby doesn’t stand a chance.

AM I A BIGGER DORK BECAUSE I OBSESSIVELY PLAY:

GoW: Yes

Halo: Yes

EDGE: This is tricky. Does the edge go to the game that makes you more dorky or less? Either way you’ve gotta give props to the thousands of kids who are right now fragging a cog and chatting with their buddies via Xbox Live wireless headsets.

AM I THE BIGGEST DORK FOR WRITING ABOUT THIS?

Yes.

Dammit.

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