This August will see the return of Shreveport's Comic Convention, Geek'd Con, and this year comes a guest that the 11-year-old gamer in me can't wait to meet. If you remember the heyday of the original Xbox console or the Xbox 360 you most definitely will recognize the green armor-clad space soldier Master Chief, from the video game franchise Halo. Well, this August Geek'd Con welcomes Steve Downes, the legendary voice behind the character and in preparation I'm planning to sit down and play through each of the best Halo games, but that begs the question, which Halo games should you play before August.

"I think we're just getting started." | 3) Halo: Combat Evolved

Back in the late 90s the game studio Bungie had started work on a new game they codenamed Blam! and over the course of over 5 years the game would come to be the first-person shooter Halo: Combat Evolved which hit the Xbox console on November 15th, 2001.

Combat Evolved makes it to this list for many reasons, first off being that even over 20 years later this game feels just as good as a brand-new Xbox game. This game would kick off a story that would ensnarl gamers with grandiose sci-fi action. In this game you'll be introduced to the series antagonists, The Covenant, a coalition of space aliens hell-bent on the destruction of humanity. One man stands in their way, you, well not you but you instead play as the man who stands in their way, Master Chief Petty Officer John-117. While the gameplay is simple compared to something like Fortnite or modern Call of Duty games there's no shortage of high-powered action to be found in destroying armies of aliens who so lovingly refer to you as The Demon.

The story is quite easy to follow once you get into the game, Master Chief wakes up from Cryo-Sleep to find out they've discovered an ancient weapon known as the Halo Ring, capable of destroying all living matter in the universe. Your job as Master Chief is to stop the Covenant from activating this ring, oh and to fight off the ancient space parasite known as the Flood. You've got this!

Oh and of course the multiplayer still holds up, I highly recommend getting some friends together with your old Xbox consoles and get a LAN party going.

"Sir, finishing this fight." | 2) Halo 2

The sequel which does everything the first game did, but better. Production on Halo 2 started sometime in 2002 and it only took 2 years to make a game that people today covet as one of the best video games ever made, and for good reason. So much development went into this game that they couldn't fit it all in the game, fans have recovered some of that cut content and have created a cult following in an effort in discovering what ambitious plans the team had for Halo 2.

Halo 2's story is unforgettable, especially if you play on the remastered anniversary edition of Halo 2 with all new movie like cutscenes between the action. Once again, the Master Chief is back going face to face with the Covenant, this time on Humanity's home turf as they've found Earth. It's your job as the Master Chief to stop the Covenant from activating the Ark, a massive factory that can activate even more Halo rings to destroy everything in the known universe. Once again, the Flood make an appearance, this time they're even more powerful than before. Something's different about Halo 2 though, instead of playing only as the Master Chief you'll have some missions playing as the Arbiter, an ex-covenant solider who's ready to take down the Covenant. This game has so much gone on that I can't do it justice right here, you just need to play this game to understand.

This game still has an avid multiplayer base and is even known in gaming communities for the dedication players have always had for Halo 2. In 2010 Microsoft shut down the original multiplayer servers for the second game in the Halo franchise, but 14 gamers earned the nickname of the Noble 14 after they managed to stay in a server for 3 weeks after the servers should have had the plug pulled.

"Wake me... When you need me." | 1) Halo 3

This list seems pretty predictable so far, we've gone through the first 3 games in order but that's for a reason. This trilogy of video games deserves the gaming equivalent of an Academy Award, and if you don't believe that then you clearly have never played through the story mode of Halo 3. Dropping in 2007 the third game in the Halo series sold over $300 million dollars in just one week of release.

The story mode of this game is still lauded by many as the best in the entire 23-year-old franchise. Picking up right where Halo 2 drops off we again play as the Master Chief and his new ally in the Arbiter. The usual suspects, the Flood and the Covenant, are once again vying to bring the end of humanity. More specifically you fight off the Covenant left on Earth, before the Flood find their way aboard a starship and arrive at Earth creating even more problems for Chief and Arbiter. This game's story is massive to put it lightly, everything I've gone over is just the first few missions of the game. This game's story should be a must play for any gamer.

The multiplayer of Halo 3 is probably best remembered for being the place where E-Sports really got a kickstart, with organizations like the MLG putting heavy focus into fostering a competitive scene with Halo 3. Halo E-Sports continue to hold a loyal fanbase today with the Halo Championship Series running yearly with massive prize pools for those with skilled thumbs.

Honorable Mentions

Halo 3: ODST is an amazing game with a unique gameplay style but since we're getting excited for Steve Downes coming to Shreveport, ODST doesn't make the cut for the simple reason of not having Master Chief in the game.

Halo Infinite was the 6th game in the mainline series but for brevity didn't make it on this list. There's a lot that can be said about the latest addition to the franchise but we're 1,000 words in, so I'll keep it short. Infinite has one of the most visually stunning story modes of all of the games, and the story tells a story that has had fans clamoring for more since the game released in 2021. It also has some of the most voice acting for Master Chief so if you want to hear the amazing vocal talent of Steve Downes before Geek'd Con then I'd give this one a play.

John C. McGinley Movies to Watch Before Geek'd Con

They're not in any particular order, but these are all classic John C. McGinley movies you should watch right now.

History Of Geek'd Con Guests

Geek'd Con is Shreveport's biggest comic and pop culture event. Launching in 2015, the event quickly became one of the premiere comic con style events in the entire state of Louisiana.

A big part of that growth has been the celebrity guest lineups. Since the first show in 2015, the quality of guests attending Geek'd Con rivals any pop culture event of this size. From classic Star Wars stars to guests from the Marvel Cinematic Universe, Geek'd Con has welcomed the biggest names from multiple generations. Here's a look at the history of guests at Geek'd Con.

Gallery Credit: Geek'd Con