Halo Wars 2 first impressions

Yesterday I excitedly fired up Halo Wars 2 on PC, and from its first moments it was impressive. There is one problem I’m having with it, however, and that’s the way it controls on PC. It doesn’t control like an RTS at all, which I assume is because the game was designed with console gamers in mind (it is a Play Anywhere title). I had to dig into the key bindings menu a lot, even after finishing the tutorials, just to figure out how to do things that should be common sense. I’m incredibly puzzled by some of the control decisions they’ve made on PC. For example, to rotate or zoom the camera you must first hold down the ALT key. It just doesn’t feel right. The worst problem of all, however, came when I tried to figure out how to bring up the pause menu. The ESC key did nothing, and I tried just about every key I could think of, but nothing happened. Eventually I turned on my Xbox controller and took control that way just to get into the key bindings menu to find out that F10 is the pause / menu key, not ESC. What the heck?

I haven’t tried to play Halo Wars 2 with a controller yet, so maybe that will end up being the way to play it, but I’m a little disappointed that it doesn’t control as smoothly as I expected it to on PC. Other than that it runs great, and I’ve had a fun time with it despite the control hiccups.

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