Nobody's mentioned Halo 3: ODST yet, as far as I can see, so let me be the first to do so.
Cinematically, it's awesome. The cinematics proper are good, and many of the levels start with short first-person cinematics - even the one at the start of the game kicks ass. On the topic of drama, the characters are convincing (with the exception of), the story is well played out, and concepts are used that Bungie has been wanting to use for years. N
The gameplay is terrific. Instead of rushing in and killing hordes of aliens because you're a pimpin' supersoldier and that's how pimpin' supersoldiers roll, you actually have to stop and think. Take down that Grunt, grab his plasma pistol, silently melee a Jackal with it and take his carbine, use the pistol and carbine to knock out all the Brutes, and try to stay clear of the Hunter pair - speaking of which, NEVER engage a Hunter pair.
On this theme, it is ALWAYS best to have covering fire. As MC, you could blast through waves and waves of Covies without a single thought for the poor beleaguered Marines by your side. As the Rookie, the poor beleaguered Marines are your only hope for salvation.
My only complaints are:
a) It's too short.
c) Veronica has a really weird face.
One of the best games I've played in a while.
Any other opinions?