Bungie's final Halo game is arguably its best, representing all of the lessons learned from 10 years with the franchise. The campaign tells a great story within Halo's fiction and introduces us to some of the series' best characters. Firefight returns with countless improvements over ODST's incarnation making it a full-fledged mode. Multiplayer, of course, remains the game's strongest pillar with an amazing experience out of the box for both casual and serious players along with a super-charged Forge mode and Forge World, which will ensure that user-created content continues to flow for years to come. Few shooters can capture the pure-fun created by the weapons, vehicles, abilities, and physics of Halo's sandbox.
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Runner-up: Battlefield: Bad Company 2
Bad Company 2 triumphantly brought the series back to the PC with an class-based, visceral multiplayer mode and an enjoyable single-player campaign thrown in for good measure. Bad Company 2's objective-based multiplayer rewards teamplay and creates intense frontline-based virtual warfare that mixes infantry and vehicle combat as only the folks at DICE can do for military shooters.