Halo 2 The Campaign Gameplay Faq Copyright 2004, Brian D. Cates Questions? Tips? Feedback? Email me at firstname.lastname@example.org Only these following sites have my permission to post this Faq. If I find any other sites hosting it, I will find a big gaggle of really annoying grunts and let them out of the game so I can send them after you. GameFaqs I have played through this faq on the Heroic Level. Heroic and Legendary levels are exactly what they are entitled. Your health drops fast and your enemies are far tougher to kill. Some levels of this game on Legendary I have found to be even more difficult than the Ninja Gaiden expansion pack. (And I thought the regular game was hard!) Since this is the level that will be challenging for most of the people who play the game, it is the one used here. Because many people have claimed 'Halo 2 is JUST LIKE HALO 1! WE'VE BEEN ROBBED!' I'm going to help these noobs out by pointing out with GAME IMPROVEMENT! notices where Halo 2 is distinctly different from Halo 1. Level I: The Heretic For failure such as this, no punishment is too great. (That's right - no 20 pages worth of me retyping the instruction manual - because you already have one. Why should I get writers cramp because you're too lazy to look it up? Huh? Why?) (Well, OK, I'll compromise a little bit. The FIRST TIME a particular feature is used in the game, I will describe which button, trigger or thumbstick to use. There, happy now?) The opening cutscene of the game ingeniously contrasts the treatment both Master Chief an Elite Fleet Commander recieve from their respective peers upon their return from the destruction of Halo. Level II: Armory Suit up, prepare for battle. While Master Chief is having his Mjolnir Armor upgraded at Earth Defense Platform Cairo, a huge floating space station far above Earth, the Elite Fleet Commander is branded a traitor and a heretic for failing to prevent the destruction of the Halo ring. We see his trial,such as it is, in the Covenant city of High Charity. The Elite Commander tries to make his case to the Prophets, the great leaders of the Covenant, old wizened creatures who sit in floating chairs, and he fails. Meanwhile, Master Chief will briefly, for the first time in the game, be under your control as you help the Mjolner technician check the armor's inverted look mechanism and then recharge the armor's shield. Simply use the right thumbstick (Camera View) to look at the lights on the grid in front of you. Then, follow the technician using the left thumbstick (movement control) to the right, where the Official Mjlolner Shield Charger is waiting. (Like that name? I just invented it!) Stand in the center of the big tuning-fork shaped object, in front of the stand with the red blinking display with a hand in the center of it, and press down on the blue 'X' button on the controller. This will activate the Official Mjlolner Shield Charger, and and you will see on the lower left hand side of the screen the 'Shield' Heads Up Display (HUD) quickly go from empty to full. While the technician is still explaining stuff, who should come strolling in wearing his dress whites but Sergeant First Class A. J. Johnson! (I know, I know, you thought the Flood got him in the first Halo game. Or if you beat the game on Legendary, you were surprised to see him in a humourous yet strangely touching cutscene with a Blue Elite) Apparently, Sgt. Johnson is very, very hard to kill. Anyway, he's here to guide Master Chief to the next part of the game, so follow him into the elevator and then into the shuttle. Don't forget to look around as the shuttle is moving because the views are spectacular. Youwill really believe you are on a space station floating above Earth. After some chatter from Sgt. Johnson on the shuttle, it arrives at it's destination............a platform with a bunch of cheering Marines on it! It seems the word of the Master Chief's heroics have gotten out, despite his wishes to keep things low-key. Follow Johnson out of the shuttle, and another cinematic will begin. At the same time this is going on at Earth, the Elite Fleet Commander is stripped of his rank, tortured, then branded, all by a new race of creatures we are seeing for the very first time, called............the Brutes! (GAME IMPROVEMENT! In the very first cinematic, we are introduced to not one but TWO Covenant races who do not appear in Halo 1: Brutes and Prophets) One of these large, gorilla-like creatures is very distinct, because he's the only one with mohawk-like hair. This creature seems to take special relish in torturing the Elite Fleet Commander, personally wielding the huge branding iron by which the Elite is literally marked a heretic. It turns out Master Chief is not the only one getting a medal today. Sgt. Johnson gets one.....and Miranda Keyes, the daughter of Captain Keyes from the first game, is given a posthumous award for her father. Before it can go any further, the medal awarding party is abruptly interrupted by..........the arrival of a Covenant fleet! Cortana is immediatly on top of things. She has control of a huge MAC space gun to defend the station against the Covenant ships, but just as she's getting ready to use it, a new swarm of Covenant ships comes out of hyperspace right next to Cairo! The Covenant hope to knock the MAC gun offline! While Miranda Keyes goes to her Fleet ship, Sgt. Johnson and Master Chief are tasked with defending the space station from Covenant boarders! Level III: Cairo Station Defend the station's MAC-gun from Covenant boarders. Now the cinematic will end, and you have to quickly follow Sgt. Johnson and a bunch of Marines down a flight of stairs in front of you to the Armory, where you have your choice of two weapons to carry. Just like the first game, Master Chief can only carry two weapons at a time, so choose wisely. You have a choice of: Battle Rifle Magnum Pistol Submachine Gun I would go with the Submachine Gun as the main weapon for right now. It's a close-range weapon and this is going to be close up work. If you need to take medium to long range shots, you can switch to the Battle Rifle with it's scope. Because Master Chief has no weapons at this point, he will automatically pickup the first two weapons you stand in front of. You can switch between these two weapons by pressing the yellow 'Y' button on your Controller. To reload a weapon, you will press the blue 'X' button. (Note: many times in the game to pick up a weapon on the ground and exchange it with a weapon you are carrying, or to open a door or operate an elevator, the game will ask you to press the blue 'X' button. It is important that you press and HOLD DOWN THE BUTTON when doing this. If you just tap it, what will happen is that the Master Chief will reload his present weapon with a fresh clip. He will do that even if he already has a full magazine in the weapon. That can cost you valuable ammo, so be careful when pressing this button) For secondary weapon I would grab a Battle Rifle. For now, after you've picked up a Battle Rifle and a Submachine Gun, go stand in front of another Submachine Gun. See the white graphic in the upper left hand corner of the HUD? It gives you the option of DUAL WEILDING by pressing and holding down the 'Y' button. Press and hold it and.....................Master Chief will pick up a second Submachine Gun and hold it in his other hand! (GAME IMPROVEMENT! You could not wield two weapons at once in Halo 1. During the game, experiment with various combos of weapons. Also, some weapons require two hands, such as Shotguns and Battle Rifles, so you cannot dual wield these weapons. And last but not least, if you are dual wielding, you cannot throw grenades, no matter how many you have. To be able to throw grenades again, hit the yellow 'Y' button and Master Chief will switch to his other weapon, dropping the one he was dual-wielding in his left hand, leaving that free now to toss grenades at anything that needs to be blown up. And since we're discussing it; to throw grenades: pull the Left Trigger and aim where the grenade will go using the Right Thumbstick. Also,to toggle between human Frag Grenades and Covenant Plasma Grenades, hit the black button right next to the white button on the controller. Frag Grenades bounce around before exploding, so aim low. Plasma grenades stick to whatever they hit before exploding, so aim just a little high.) Note that you have 360 rounds for each Submachine Gun. That seems like alot, but it really isn't; if you hold the trigger too long your magazines will run dry in a hurry, and it takes several seconds for Master Chief to re-load them. You do not want both Submachine Guns to run dry at the same time. Watch your bullet count, and when there are just a few bullets left, hit the 'X' button and MasterChief will reload it. If you fire the magazine empty, Master Chief will automatically reload it if he has another magazine. To keep from running out of magazines for your weapons, keep an eye out for Submachine Guns and Battle Rifles lying on the floor, dropped by dead Marines. Got it? Good! Because here come the Covenant! Follow Sgt. Johnson and the Marines out of the Armory and turn right into a large room with window panels on the left showing the area outside. You can see a Covenant boarding ship zooming in and making contact with a BOOM! against the Cairo's hull! At the far end of the room is a blast door with a revolving red light. As you watch, the next checkpoint loads, we see the name of the next section of the game............... "Home Field Advantage" Mission Objective: Repel the Covenant Boarders ............and at the same time we see the ominous yellow dot appear in the middle of door, which means the Covenant is starting to burn their way through! (Yes folks, it's a rip-off of the opening scene from the first Star Wars movie, but hey, it's a GOOD rip-off!!!!) There are many square shaped computer panels facing this door, so move behind one of them and get your Submachine Guns ready. Finally the door explodes, there is a haze of smoke........and the Covenant boarders appear! Grunts and Blue Elites come streaming in through the broken remains of the blast door, and you must open fire and hit them and take them down before they reach you. Alternate your squeezing of the left and right triggers when you fire your Submachine guns and use short bursts. If you press and hold the trigger, the gun will 'climb' on you and you will not be able to aim it. Just like a real gun! After the first group of Grunts and Elites have hit the floor, two more Blue Elites will suddenly come running from above the blast door andjump down into the room. If you are a fast shot, you can shoot them before they jump down and take them out. Remember to move around behind the blast doors while you are shooting. If you get hit and your shield gets low, do not hesitate to pull back and take cover until your shield recharges. Gamer Tip: Very rarely in this game, unless you are taking a long distance sniper shot, or behind cover, should you stand in one spot while shooting. Standing still when enemies are nearby is a bad idea because stationary targets are most easily hit by bullets, plasma charges, and grenades. The higher the difficulty of the game, the more accurate and rapidly Master Chief's enemies will shoot. Which means the greater the difficulty, the greater the price you are going to pay for standing still. Three things you should be watching during the intense combat of this game: Your ammo, your movement and your shield level. Lose track of any of those three and the consequences will be disastrous. On the higher levels of the game, do not reload while standing in the open. When your weapon is about to run dry, head for cover and reload while your shield recharges. Once all the Elites and the Grunts have stopped charging into the room you are in, move into the room beyond the blast door and look to the right - there are more Grunts and Elites behind some cover. These guys were smarter than their buddies - the didn't just charge in and get shot. They will use cover when their shields are low, so you will have to move and flank them from the side. Once this bunch is all down, move to where they were hiding and look to the right - you will see a Marine manning a turrent gun at the base of some stairs. Go up the stairs. At the top, in front of two doors, one blocked and one that can open, lies a Marine who has made the ultimate sacrifice in defense of Earth. Next to him is a Submachine Gun, so move over it and Master Chief will replenish his Submachine Gun ammo. Doors that are able to open will have lighted GREEN bars on them. Doors that are not able to open will have lighted RED bars on them. The door to the right has red bars, the door to the left has green bars - guess which way we go? After passing through the double green doors, you will see a narrowhallway in front of you and to your left, a much larger room where a firefight has broken out between the human defenders and the invading Covenant. You have two ways to do this: man the turret gun to your immediate left and drive the Covenant back, or you can follow the hallway and the stairs at the end and surprise the Covenant with a flanking attack. On higher levels such as Heroic and Legendary, when you man the turrent too long a crafty Red Elite will come down the hallway and attack you from behind. Kill any Covenant that are visible with the turrent gun but don't stay on the gun for more than 10-15 seconds to make sure you don't get flanked. Watch your motion tracker and make sure no red dots appear behind you. Then head down the hallway and go down the stairs. Usually there is a Blue Elite and a Grunt at the landing you have to take out. There will also be a Red Elite hiding behind a barrier. Once the area is clear, go to the bottom of the stairs and there will be another dead Marine with a Submachine Gun so you can up your ammo. To the left will be a doorway, through which you will see a Marine in dress whites and a Marine in cammo standing and waiting. As you move into the room to join them, they will run over to you and a big explosion will reverberate through the space station. Another boarding party! This is a big room and now there are Covenant massing at the far end. Mostly Grunts for now, so move to the left along the wall and shoot into the room to take them out. The two Marines will join you and provide good cover fire. Cross the room and go up the stairs on the opposite side. There's another blast door opening on the far right hand side of this big room, and a Covenant boarding party is starting to charge through - about 4 Grunts and a Blue Elite. While you are taking them out, there is another blast door open on the left hand side of the room, and there are Covenant waiting in ambush here; once again a Blue Elite and his Grunts. But their ambush is going to fail because I just told you about it. Once you have taken out this bunch of Covenant, go down into the doorway on the right where this last group waited in ambush and you will see another stairway going up. Take it. Going through the door on the right at the top of the stairs, you will enter a hanger, and through the plateglass wall on the far side, you will see the Covenant boarding ship and the funnel through which Covenant soldiers are entering the Cairo. This is the path the last group of Covenant boarders followed. You can also see another Earth Defense Platform in the distance, and from the chatter Master Chief is picking up on his communicator, we learn it's called the Malta and it is also under attack by boarders at the moment. A pitched battle is being waged on the hanger floor, and you need to join it fast before more Covenant come through those funnels and overwhelm the Marines. Intially there will be a Blue Elite and few grunts on the far left hand side of the room in the far corner, close to where the purple-glowing end of the boarding funnel from the Covenant ship can be seen sticking through the glass. They'll be right in front of you when you come running in. There are plenty of grenades on this landing, both Frag and Plasma, so make sure you get a full complement of each before jumping down to engage the enemy. As soon as you take them out, head down the glass wall towards the other funnel at the far end, because more Covenant boarders are on the way. While you are moving down the plate glass window, look outside as the Marine looking out the glass swears as the Malta Earth Defense Platform suddenly blows up. This happens just after some hopeful dialogue by Marines on that platform that the Covenant suddenly broke off their attack and left. The Marines thought they had won the day, but now disaster has struck. From the far end, now turn and face the blast door on the opposite side of the room, with the Pelican between you and it and get ready: another Covenant boarding party soon comes charging into the room. Take them out; with a well placed grenade or two you can take the whole party down and avoid a protracted fire-fight. The blast door that just opened to let this now dead Covenant boarding party into the hangar is now your exit. Turn left and move through the hazy smoke. When you round the corner, you will see turret gun between two blast shields. Also, you will see fire from a plasma weapon coming through the open door ahead. A Marine will be standing on the far side of this door, taking cover. Carefully peek around the corner of the doorway and assess the situation. Once again, through the plate glass that runs along the wall on the left, you can see a Covenant Boarding Ship. You can also see, over the large storage crates that dot this room, several Grunts manning plasma cannons from a walkway in the middle of the room. Since they are elevated they have a clear line-of-sight to the entire room and will engage in fire supression to pin advancing forces so that they can be flanked by the Covenant roaming the floor. Or, in plain English, these grunts have got the room covered so they have to die first. This is where the Battle Rifle with it's handy scope comes into play. Using three shot burts, take the Grunts out. The Marine will fire to try to keep any Covenant from moving in and getting a good shot at you while you are aiming around the corner. Once the Grunts on the walkway are dead, the Marine will immediately charge into the room to engage the enemy. Semper Fi, buddy!!!!! If you are low on ammo for the Submachine Guns, remember to backtrack and go get the ammo from the gun lying by the body of the Marine behind the blast shields outside. Several Grunts and a Blue Elite will be on the hanger floor somewhere, and once they have been dispatched immediately a new boarding party will come jumping out of the purple glowing funnel in the plate glass wall. A Red and Blue Elite and 3-4 Grunts! If you are ready, you can chuck a grenade or two right where they are landing and blow most of them up. Think that was easy? After that boarding party is dead, a THIRD one comes charging out of the funnel, and the Red and Blue Elite with this bunch are much smarter than their predecessors; they will use cover and are very accurate with their weapons. As soon as this last party is dispatched, turn and look out the plate glass window; another space platform called the Athens blows up. Things are not looking good. The same thing happened to this last platform that happened to the Malta several minutes back. The Covenant suddenly fled to their ships and left as just as the Earth defenders were congratulating themselves for winning the battle their platform and it's precious MAC-gun blew up. Cortana reveals that her readings of the explosions of these space platforms reveals that the Malta and the Athens blew up from the INSIDE . The Covenant must be planting bombs on the platforms! This explains why they suddenly pulled back. And if they did that to the Malta and the Athens, then surely they are planting a similar bomb on the Cairo right now!!!! At this point, another part of the level will load. "Priority Shift" Mission Objective: Find and disarm the Bomb the Covenant have placed in the Cairo's shipping area. Those crafty Covenant bastards have planted a very powerful bomb on the Cairo and it's all the way on the other side of the platform. You've got to fight your way to it and disarm it. All that's standing between it and you is a horde of Covenant! So let's get to work! Once your HUD becomes active again after the introduction of the level part, note that there are two sets of stairs leading down into the floor in the middle of this hangar. The doors down there, which where red-barred and shut, now open, and the left hand one is swarming with Covenant. Use any available grenades and snipe any stragglers. Then descend the stairs. Halfway down the narrow hallway on either side of the shaft you are now in, lies a dead Marine with pick-ups of ammo or weapons. Note: When you approach the green-barred doors at the far end, a checkpoint loads and the doors on both sides open up; two Blue Elitescome down into the room. Whichever one you kill first, the other one will immediately turn his camoflauge on and come after you. The fastest, easiest way to kill these two Blue Elites is with grenades or dual-wielding the Submachine Guns. Remember to move while you throw your grenades or alternate your triggers until they are down. Once you are past them, the doors they came through lead to a weapons bay beneath the Cairo main armory. Ahead of you, on either side of the room, are two platform lifts for loading missles. You will hear a Gunnery Sergeant trying to fight off a Blue and Red Elite, but there's nothing you can do; he dies every time, but he does drop a shotgun for you. Move up to one of the lifts and it will automatically begin to open, and you can peek up the stairs into the room. Quickly spot where the two Elites are and throw grenades at them until you run out. It's duck and throw for right now, because their fire is so accurate and so fast; charging them will only get you killed. If you can take one or both out with grenades, great. If not, you have to switch to the SMG or the Battle Rifle and jump up into the room, fire a burst at them, and then run back down into the weapons bay below. To confuse the Elites, alternate between the left and right hand platforms. Once they are both dead, there is plenty of ammo lying around. No grenades though, so we will have to do alot of shooting for this next part. Get the shotgun lying on the floor if you want it. Move around the tables in the room and you will automatically pick up ammo for all the weapons you're carrying. Equip the Battle Rifle and slowly peek around the blast shield set up in front of the Armory exit. There is a Grunt manning a Plasma cannon on a landing halfway down this next room, and he has a big nasty Red Elite guarding him. Try to snipe them both. Be on the lookout to your left because soon three Grunts will come charging out of the open doorway there. Drop them and if you have a high shield level, run out and pick up the grenades they drop when they die. You should get at least 2. The Plasma cannon is your main concern; you must first take out whoever is manning it and then worry about the Red Elite. Use the grenades you picked up. If he's still standing, try to snipe him. You can also try to run down the corridor on the same side of the room he is on and flank him and take him out with the shotgun, which is what I did. Once he's down, Grunts will suddenly show up at the very far end of the room high up and set up another Plasma turret gun. Use the Battle Rifle to snipe them. When the area is clear, move up and head to the doorway on the lefthand side of the room that has the revolving red light over it. When you enter the doorway, there is a stairway to your right, but be careful; a Grunt is covering it at the base of the stairs with a Plasma turrent gun. Take him out. Oh, and the other Grunt and the Red Elite too. You have to go up the stairs now, and stay in the doorframe out of the middle because as the second pair of doors open a Covenant boarding party will simultaneously enter this next room from the other end and charge you aggressively. If you have a grenade, throw it into the group and take cover back the way you came. It won't kill the Red Elite in this party, but should take out most of the Grunts. Now using the door jamb for cover, use the Battle Rifle to snipe any remainingGrunts and keep the Red Elite pinned as you move up. He will stay under coverwhile his shield recharges if you hit him, so every time you hit him and he retreats to recharge his shield, quickly move up and take cover further into the room, keeping your Battle Rifle trained on the far doorway. When you are close enough, switch to your close range weapon, the SMG or the Shotgun, and step around the doorway, spot him, shoot him, and duck back behind the doorway. If he charges you , retreat and fire at him. You may have to do this several times until he goes down. Once he's down, don't bother going down the stairs on the other side of the doorway; it's a dead end. Instead, head through the green-lit doors ahead. You will enter a room where you are facing a plate glass wall and some computer panels. You will hear some firing going on to your left, so head that way. It's the rest of the medal-awards party; Miranda Keyes and Sgt. Johnson and a few Marines, some in dress whites. They are pinned and it's a good thing Master Chief showed up. You just took out a covenant party to their rear and the one to their front is advancing. Stay behind cover and use the Battle Rifle to snipe the Covenant coming up the far end of the hallway. Be careful with your fire discipline; several times during this game Marines will be moving around you as they take cover and return fire at the enemy, and if you are not paying attention you could put a round into one of your own soldiers. Once most of these Covenant are dead, the Marines will stand up and advance down the hall, so check your fire. Move up the hall and get in front of them as you scan for hostiles. Suddenly another party of Covenant will come running into view from your right. Take them down hard. Enter the room this charging band of Covenant just left and the doors will suddenly close behind you and the next part of this level will load and announce it's nifty title. If you are fast enough, spot the dead Marine and the dead grunt lying just inside this open doorway and run over to both of them before the title loads. Especially you want to get the Grunt's plasma grenades; grenades have been hard to come by on this level thus far, and they will really come in handy in a second if you want to avoid a protracted firefight. "Authorized Personnel Only" As soon as the title finishes loading, and the HUD becomes active again, the door at the far end of this room will open and two Blue Elites in space suits will enter! GAME IMPROVEMENT! The Elites now have jet propulsion packs and space suits, something we never saw in Halo 1. Even in outer space now Master Chief will have to be on the alert! These Astro-Elites are very mobile, and very good shots. If you want the combat, stay behind cover, snipe at them with the Battle Rifle to get them to retreat, and then charge through the door and out into the outer surface of Cairo to take them on in a gun battle. Or you could simply chuck several plasma grenades rapidly at the spot they moving towards as the doors first open and they charge into the room. That's the quick way to take these two nasty aliens out. If you fail to take them out in this room, they will back up and fly out into space. You will have to follow them and take them out on Cairo's outer surface. They are trying to stop you from reaching the Covenant bomb, so you have no time to waste. The key to defeating these Astro-Elites is constant movement, ducking behind cover, and firing short bursts at them to get their shields downbefore you engage in a final attack. At the open doorway, jump down onto the Cairo's surface and turn and run into what looks like a metal railroad car that is colored orange and open on both ends. Head to the opposite end, and then stop and carefully check your opening and your motion tracker. Many times one of the Astro Elites will be right outside hovering and waiting for you to show yourself. If you have a plasma grenade, try to stick him with it. Othewise, hit him with a short burst and take off running along the wall to the right and follow it. The doorway you need to get through is on the far end of this wall, so keep following it while looking out for the other Astro Elites. If you take fire, take cover. There are plenty of box like structures around, so there's no reason to return fire in the open and have your shield taken down. Unfortunately, these Astro-Elites know where you're going, and atleast one, possible two is going to be guarding the door; you'll know when you're near it because you'll see a red revolving light on the wall you are following. Try sneaking up on them first from behind and hitting them in the back with a Plasma Grenade and running for it. If that doesn't work, take them down with your mid-range weapon. Their return fire is too accurate to exchange at close range. When all the Astro Elites are dead, head through the door. After passing through the second set of doors, you will see a dead Spec Ops Marine on the floor in his black fatigues and his cool looking visor-helmet. He will also have dropped a Battle Rifle, so you get to replenish your ammo for it, which is good because you're about to use it....a lot. Head through the next double doors and you will see a Marine taking cover behind a blast shield on the left while the open expanse of the Cairo's elevator deck is seen to the right. The Covenant are using the elevator to bring a war party to your level, so get ready. First come the Drones, a swarm of locust-like creatures that mostly fire plasma pistols . GAME IMPROVEMENT! A new Covenant speicies is now introduced; Drones seem to function as scouts and snipers and their flying attacks can be very disoreinting. Fortunately, they don't have shields and will die with only a few hits. The only problem is, there are about 15 Drones, and if you aren't careful,you can use up all your Battle Rifle ammo taking them out. That would be bad. You see, as soon as most of the Drones are dead, the elevator is going to come into view. This is an elevator which is used to lift Pelicans and very large objects into the hangers, so it is quite large. And there is a party of Covenant on it; about 6 Grunts and a Red and Blue Elite. Use the Battle Rifle and it's remaining ammo to snipe the Grunts before they can get off the Elevator. The Elites will take cover mostly, jumping out or on top of the crates on the elevator to take shots at you. If you run out of ammo, go back to the dead Spec Ops Marine that you passed; he may have some. You can also exchange weapons with the Marine fighting beside you. To do that, move over to him and position yourself next to him so that the white 'Exhange Weapon' graphic comes up. To exchange weapons, press and HOLD the blue 'X' button. These Elites are tough. Your best bet in taking them out is to use grenades. Some can be found off to the right of the room you are in, where another dead Marine is lying next to a crate. Run and get his Frag grenades and lob them at the Elites. Then charge in and finish them with the Shotgun. Once the Elites are dead, the Elevator will have descended to the lowest point, and on the far side of the elevator, a door appears. Go towards it. Right in front of the door are two dead Marines and a dead Grunt, all of whom have dropped some ordinance you can use. Take what you want and soon the door in front of you will open up. Make sure you are taking cover to the left or right of the doorway when it opens up, because there are three more Astro-Elites on the far side of this huge energy spindle that is dropping up and down, generating energy for the Earth Defense Platforms huge MAC Gun. One of these Astro-Elites is manning a Plasma Turret Gun, so he has to die first. As you fire on him, watch your shield level because you will be taking fire. Duck back behind the doorway when your shield level gets too low. I would not try to advance until this Plasma Turret Gun is out of action; the fire from it is very rapid and very accurate. The other two Astro Elites will take off and start to move in on you; if you can drop the one manning the Turrent Gun, they will hesitate and break off their attack. Bring down a second one and the third will retreat to guard the door on the far side of the platform, trying to prevent you from going through it. The shotgun will be very effective at close range. Once you get to the door, the next, and final part, of this first level will load: "Return To Sender" You take a ride downard in an elevator, and when the doors open (make sure you're facing the right way) you discover a very large party of Covenant guarding the ticking bomb you've come to disarm. They don't seem interested in just leaving it; apparently theyknow you are coming and intend to stand there and make surenothing interferes with the bomb going off, even though that means sacrificing themselves. Your job is simple: kill them all without them killing you first. Here's where you use all the skills you've learned in battle thus far. First throw a grenade or two if you have them into the biggest mass of Covenant, and take cover. You have a few seconds until a Blue Elite charges you, so use them to take cover behind the large crate in front of the door you just entered by, and snipe the Grunts first. They throw grenades and with them out of the way you can contrate on the 4 Elites in this room. From behind the crate, look to the left - there is a open vented area to the other side of the room. Go through it and you will find two dead Marines who died so there could be more weapons and ammo lying here for you to pick up. Don't let their deaths be in vain! Take their ordinance and kill Covenant with it! Note that there are also stairs you can climb up to get an elevated look at the room. If you have a Battle Rifle, you can try sniping the Elites. Be warned however - the rate of fire from these enemies is very fast and accurate and if they pin you in a corner the fire will be continuous so they can keep you stuck there while they move up and flank you. Throw grenades, keep moving, and retreat if necessary. Once the Elites are dead, a very great cutscene will load. Those of you who saw the Halo 2 E3 trailer will recognize some of the footage of this cutscene, and see how it's been altered to fit the plot of the story. It's very different now from what was seen two years ago. Master Chief decides to give the Covenant back their bomb, so he drags it to a launch bay and literally launches himself and the bomb out the open bay doors, guiding the heavy bomb to a big Covenant ship and arming it just before pushing off and falling towards the Earth. The bomb goes off with spectacular results, demcimating most of the Covenant Fleet. Meanwhile, Master Chief expertly free-falls so as to make a pefect landing on the hull of Miranda Keye's own ship. Sgt Johnson says, "For a brick, he flew pretty good!" Miranda then says it's time to take this fight to the surface, and thats where we see the cutscene end, with the ship descending. And that's the First Level! What were the major high points? 1. Introduction of Dual Wielding 2. First meeting with Astro-Elites 3. First meeting with Drones 4. First opportunity to use the Submachine Gun and the Battle Rifle and the new Magnum Pistol 5. Master Chief engages in combat in outer space for the first time. 6. Re-introduction of Sgt. A. J. Johnson 7. Introduction of Miranda Keyes Please note: This was a very direct walkthrough of the level. There are several alternative routes that can be used; also, there are places Master Chief can get to and explore that have no bearing on the story campaign. I once spent over an hour exploring the outer surface of the Cairo after I dispatched the three Astro-Elites and before I finally took the elevator down to take out the bomb. Some of the views on this level are spectacular, so I encourage you to spend some time exploring and looking around. Level IV: Outskirts Rally scattered Marines, clear hostile contacts from the old city. In the opening cutscene the level, we see three Pelican Drop Ships coming to the surface of the Earth, where they fly into thecity known as New Mombasa. The city is under direct attackby the Covenant; as a matter of fact, the Admiral back up in space wants to know why the Covenant chose THIS particular city to land while ignoring the rest of the planet. And it just so happens that Earth Defense Forces intelligencehas learned there is someone on the main Covenant flagshiporbiting the planet that can tell them - the Prophet Regret! Seems this important Covenant leader is on the flagship and is so paniced after over half his fleet is wiped out by the bombMaster Chief 'returned' to them that he's frantically giving himself away by radioing for help. Master Chief is tasked with finding the Prophet Regret and learning from him the reason for the Covenant's interestin New Mombasa. While this dialogue is going one, we see the Pelicans swoopingpast a pair of Marine sniper/scouts who warn that the intended landing zone ahead is full of hostiles and who reccommend aborting the landing. It's Sgt. Johnson's call, and he says they're going in. Just at this moment, a huge spider-like machine rounds the cornerup ahead - it's a SCARAB! GAME IMPROVEMENT! - The Covenant now have an answer to the Scorpion Battle Tank. Sanding almost 300 feet high and looking very insect-like, the Scarab has a huge plasma cannon mounted on this 'head'. As we watch, the Scarab fires it's main plasma cannon and knockstwo of the Pelicans from the sky. Master Chief is stunned, his vison blurred from the concussion of the Pelican's hitting the earth. Then he recovers, and sees the other Marine survivors of the crashcharging out of the Pelican and taking cover position in front of a doorway. The title then loads, and it's a humorous one: "They'll Regret That Too" Mission Objective: Defend the Marines until help arrives. Move up and go through the door the Marines are in front of. You start this level with the Battle Rifle equipped, so be ready touse it as you turn the corner behind the door. A Grunt is slowly making it's way up a flight of stairs. Send him back down thestairs dead. At the foot of the stairs is another doorway. Now on theNormal or the Easy setting you could just charge out there and run and gun and shoot everything you saw. Not on Heroic or Legendary. You get shot 3 times in a row you are one dead Spartan on this level, so instead of charging throughthe doorway, stop, take up a position on the left hand side of of it and peek through with the Battle Rifle's scope. A Grunt or two will be in sight. Drop them, and the rest of the Covenantin the courtyard outside will come running into your sights. The doorway will give you some cover as you pick them off. I sniped 5 Grunts from the doorway, and then my Marines went charging through the door and took up positions in the courtyard. Just like in real combat, you have an advantage if you hold the high ground on the battlefield. So notice on the far side of the courtyard is a bombed out building with a second story. You need to get over there and go up some stairs so you can cover the courtyard and the street and buildings adjacent to it with your guns. As you move toward the building, several Jackals will fire onyou from the right. Take them down, and as you enter the doorway of the bombed out 2 story building, you will encounter a Red Elite and his Grunts coming down the stairsyou intend to go up. Deal with them harshly. As you are going up the stairs a checkpoint will load, and a big mean nasty Red Elite will appear on the top of one of the buildings acrossthe street and he will JUMP all the way across and land on the landing of the building you are in. Take him out but be careful not to accidently kill any of your Marines, since every time I play this level one of my Marines engages this Red Elite at very close range. Besides the Red Elite, Jackals will also take up sniping positions on the rooftops across the street and use beam rifles to cover the area. Use your Battle Rifle to end the threat. Once the rooftops are clear, you Marines will take up positions on the landing and set up a turret gun on the corner covering the courtyard. Right after this some Covenantwill come up the stairs behind you - drop them. At the same time, a party of Covenant will run out between some buildings across the street. Take them down........and the next two that follow them. Then a bunch of Covenant will run through a doorway and take up positions behind cover in the Courtyard and begin sniping at your Marines. And as soon as you take them out.........Drones show up. Lots of them. And in the middle of all this a Covenant drop ship will show up and drop off some Elites and Jackals and Grunts to add to the confusion. You will have firefights going on all over the place. I was remindedof the American boys stranded overnight in Mogadishu in the Black Hawk Down incident. Everywhere you turn somebody is charging the building and attacking it. Remember to move, watch your ammo and take cover if your shield goes low. And if you survive all that, that just means you get to help take out the two Hunters that show up then. They will come bursting through a metal door and take up positions in the courtyard below. This combat with the Hunters never seems to go the same way twice. One time my Marines took them out easy with sniper shots. Another time we were all running for our lives for over 20 minutes as nobody had any grenades left and the Hunters never gave our sniper a clear shot. They did, however, come into the building and shoot theirfuel rod cannons at us through a hole in the floor. Another time,they came up the stairs after us. If the Hunters prove crafty and it's taking awhile to drop them, here's a strategy: Wait until they are firing at your Marines and are pre-occupied. Jump off the landing and RUN to the doorway you came through to enter the courtyard at the beginning of the level.Most times, neither Hunter will notice you, and if they do, they don't chase you through the doorway. Wait for a minute, then sneak through the doorway again and usingcover, find the Hunters. Most times they will be standing with theirbacks to you looking up at the Marines on the landing. If you can pick up a grenade from a fallen Covenant, great. Throw it so it lands on one of the Hunter's back on the orange section. If not, use the Submachine Gunto riddle the Hunter's orange spot with bullets. He won't drop the first time you do this, so when he turns around run like hell for the doorway again. If you wait a minute, most times they will forget about you and turn and face the building. One may move closer to the door, but will keep his back to you most of the time. If you succeed in taking one out, it really makes the other one angry. The second one will now keep a watch on the doorway you are running in and out of. To take him out, you simply have to run all over the courtyard and pick up a few plasma grenades and then run back through the doorway. He came close to tagging me several times, but never hit me. (Master Chief always seems to move a LITTLE FASTER whenever there's a Hunter around). From the doorway,wait until he turns his back again, and run up and stick a plasma grenade to his back. Another alternative strategy is, if you are a good shot with the sniper rifle, take it from the Marine who has it and use yourself as human bait to draw the Hunters into sight by sticking you head over the landing so they can see you. They will fire at the spot you were standing at when you showed yourself, so make that spot on one side of the building. Then staying under cover and away from the landing's edge, move to the opposite side of the building and spot the Hunters - you should be seeing them from the side and slightly from behind. Aim for their vulnerable orange spots and drop them. Mission Objective: Rendezvous with the Pelican. A Pelican dropship bringing fresh troops into the battle can't land because it's Landing Zone (LZ) is too hot. You and Sgt. Johnson need to clear the LZ so this Pelican can land with it's desperately needed troops. Once the Hunters are dead, follow Sgt. Johnson through the door the Hunter's burst through when they made their entrance. Follow past the fires and thesmoke and turn right where the alleyway ends. Sgt. Johnson will be standingin front of a corner, so carefully peek around it. About 50 yards away will be several Jackals in the open, but be careful. Those guys are only bait to lure you into the open so the jackals hidden in the shadows of the bombed out building further back can snipe you with their beam rifles. One hit and your shield is gone; a second hit before that shield recharges will kill you. If you have the sniper rifle, snipe the sniping snipers. They have to go first because their fire is much more accurate than the jackals armed with plasma pistols in the foreground. From there switch to the Battle Rifle and take out the 6 or so Jackals moving around in the open. Once they are all dead, the Pelican will come swooping in and drop some Marines, who join your party. Mission Objective: Find the Marines from the second downed Pelican. Master Chief is tasked with learning what became of the second Pelican thatcrashed when the Scarab fired, so move forward with these Marines until the checkpoint loads. You will see a very small square-shaped opening with an alleyway revealed around the corner to the right. There are two dead Marines lying here, so check them for pickups BEFORE you stick your head around the corner. There are lots of enemies up ahead and you need to be careful about exposing yourself. Jackals with beam rifles, Drones with plasma guns, and Elites with Energy Swords are just some of what awaits you around that corner. So don't just go charging around the corner. Sneak a glance and take out the Jackal that is closest, who is patrolling about 20 feet down the alleyway. Once he's down, believe me, you are going to have plenty of targets. Once again, Jackals will expose themselves on the ground in the lighted area so Jackals with beam rifles hiding in the shadows way at the back can snipe you. Use the sniper rifle to take out the Jackal snipers and their beam rifles. If you want, there is a beam rifle lying near the two dead Marines so you can give these Jackals a taste of their own medicine! (I always like to say 'How do YOU like it? Huh? How does it feel NOW?! whenever I kill a Covenant with one of their own weapons) Three or four Marines will then join you in shooting at the enemy, which is good because there are plenty of enemy to shoot at. About 15 Drones will suddenly join the battle, and so you and the Marines will be shooting at the Drones and Jackals. Once they are all dead, the Marines always automatically advance. There's no way I can find to stop them. Why would I want to stop them? Because as they advance two Energy Sword carrying Elites come jumping down from a rooftop and kill all of them, that's why! Shoot at these Elites from a distance to get their shields down and then toss grenades to finish them off. If they charge.....................RUN! One hit from their swords and you are gone. At close range with these guys the Submachine Gun works alot better than the Battle Rifle, which has a slower rate of fire. One charged me and I threw a plasma grenade that stuck right to his face. I was backing up fast at the time, so it worked. And I also got a pretty good view of him blowing up. Once the Elites are down................take cover! A Jackal will appear on one of the rooftops on the right hand side of the alleyway and the fire from his beam rifle is very accurate and deadly. Use the Sniper Rifle or the Battle Rifle to snipe him back. He deserves it. After all, he's on YOURplanet and he could have stayed home, right? Once he's dead, a checkpoint will load. On the lefthand side halfway down, is a smaller, branching alleyway where there are a bunch of Jackals and Grunts. Clear the alleyway; you can use the stairs on the opposite side of the alleyway's opening to get an elevated look of the area. There will also be a dead Marine in a little alcove with a Submachine Gun waiting to be picked up if you want it. He's close to the foot of the stairs. There's another, more hidden pickup spot at the end of the first alleyway. Instead of turning left to follow the new alleyway, just keep going straight. You will come to a spot with fires where a big bomb hit. Jump to the right where there is a balcony like structure and you will find a dead Marine with various pickups. Sniper ammo, Battle Rifle Ammo, and a Magnum handgun. Head down the lefthand branching alleyway and you have several options. You can go straight, to where the white truck can be seen at the end, or take the doorway halfway down on the right. I'd take the doorway since this allows you to flank the Red Elite hiding further down the alleyway. You pass a fire burning in the corner, and come to another doorway, through which you can see a lefthand portion of the alleyway you couldn't earlier. You can see a Red Elite waiting there in ambush. If he heard you moving around, he will head straight for the doorway you are now looking through. Hit him with some grenades and then retreat, because lots of Grunts and Jackals are going to show up. One Jackal will be running around on a balcony above your head; the other will have a beam rifle he'll try to snipe you with. Shoot zem! Shoot zem both! (Sorry, just saw Raiders of the Lost Ark again the other day.................) A Blue Elite and some Grunts are in the left hand area as well; a well placed Grenade will kill the Grunts and take the Elite's shield down so you can finish him with bullets. Think that was easy? Great, here comes the Red Elite with his gaggle of Grunts, and boy, is he pissed. He almost got me, too. His shots are very accurate and very damaging and he attacks without warning. I retreated all the way back down the alley, went to the stairs on the far side, equipped the sniper rifle, and slowly moved up the stairs until I had a view of Mr. Pissed Red Elite. Two rounds in the head, and he wasn't pissed any more. The Grunts you can take out with the Battle Rifle, but be careful of any plasma grenades they throw at you. Moving up, you have two avenues open to you: the end of the alleywaywhere the front of the white truck sticks out into view, or the lefthand side you just cleaned out of Covenant, which leads up past the white truck. It matters which one you take and I'll prove it to you. Run around the white truck for a second and don't stop until you are back in the cover of the alleyway. A Jackal will shoot at you with a beam rifle and blow the truck up. Move up the left hand side opening where you can see some of the rooftops. This guy's on a rooftop somewhere to the upper left and you need to find him and drop him. There are some dead Marines on the ground as you move up to some red vans lying on their sides. Guess what? The Jackal sniper is now right over your head. Carefully move out from the building and find him and put a round in his oddly shaped head. Now, you can use both avenues to move to the Hotel Zanzibar, where some Marines are waiting to guide you to the beach. (Note: on Normal and Easy, the battle between the Covenant and the Marines is always still ongoing when I arrive; on Heroic and Legendary, it's always over; is this the same for everybody else?) It's past the white truck, turning left at the end of the alley. You will see a flickering neon sign over the spacious open door area that says 'Hotel Zanzibar'. Run up and the Marine will tell you the Pelican you are looking for is on the beach and he's going to guide you to it. First however, you and he need to make it through the darkened hotel as various Covenant enemies try to stop you. It's very dark in here, so turn on the flashlight. (Press the white button on the Xbox controller) You will see blue plasma bolts hitting the wall ahead just before the Covenant charge, so you can either throw grenades at the far end of the hallway so the Covenant will run into them, or you can hold back and try to shoot them down. Either way works, but if you get in a firefight with them they always seem to kill one of the Marines. As you arrive at the end of the hall, you can see outside again, and a checkpoin will load. In the distance, a Covenant drop ship appears and will drop Covenant soldiers to contest your retaking of the downed Pelican. Help the Marines here stay alive and take down the Covenant. I simply waited inside the Hotel, waited for the dropship to leave, then shot all the Grunts as they waddled comically down the steps in front of me. When the single Elite ran by, so intent on the Marines out in the open that he never saw me, I emptied a clip from the Battle Rifle into his back and took him out. (Yeah, I shot him in the back. So what? Hey, it's WAR, all right? I am not a police officer who has to shout a warning first. Like that Marine in Fallujah that shot a terrorist only pretending to be dead, it's my call and if you don't like it, tough. Anenemy that is faking death is not surrendering and is still a combatant, and a Red Elite that didn't see me as he went by is a dead Elite. Got it?) On the beach level, you will see a Warthog taking on several Ghosts driven by Elites. Try to snipe the Elites so you can get a Ghost for yourself. Be warned, however: If the Ghost is too damaged it will begin throwing itself around and then it's engine will explode! An alternative strategy: Board the Ghost and throw the Elite off of it! Wait until the Ghost has shot by you and is slowing down and turning around. If you jump up on the Ghost and hit the blue 'X' button, Master Chief will throw the Elite off the Ghost and drop into the driver's seat. (GAME IMPROVEMENT: Boarding and stealing vehicles could not be done in Halo 1. Also, all vehicles now show damage, and some explode when damaged too much. Parts of vehicles will fly off under fire, and AI drivers will actually change their driving tactics based on how damaged their vehicle is) (GAME IMPROVEMENT: The Ghost now has a boost drive; press the left trigger while flying it and it will go very fast. The only drawback is that the cannons will not fire while this boost is engaged. This is very handy for doing fast turns, avoiding enemy fire, and just basically running for it when the ol' shield gets low) (GAME IMPROVEMENT: If you opt to take the Warthog down the beach, there are two new features to this vehicle: the emergency brake and the horn. If you want to pull a fast 'bootlegger's turn' and turn quickly to face the way you just came, move the left thumbstick around while squeezing the left trigger. And if you want Marines to hop aboard, squeeze the right trigger and the horn will sound.) Kill any Covenant that are around the down Pelican on the beach. There is also an abandoned Ghost there to, so if you haven't gotten one yet, here's your chance. Mission Objecitve: Destroy the Covenant on the shoreline. Follow the Warthog down the beach. On the left past the pier is a huge Covenant Artillery cannon being guarded by two Red Elites with Ghosts and a Jackal with a beam gun in a floating watchtower. (Note: if the Marines in the Warthog get taken out, simply drive the Warthog back to the hotel and sound the horn; Marines will come out and man the LAG and the passenger seat. To sound the horn pull the right trigger while in the driver's seat.) Once all the Covenant guarding the Artillery gun are dead, a new batch will come running out from behind some railroad cars towards the back where there is an opening. Two Elites and a bunch of Grunts will contest your desire to go any further in this game. Show them how you feel about that. Go past this group of now dead Covenant, and you will enter another section of the beach where more Covenant guard a second Artillery Gun. There's only one Ghost to worry about, and two Red Elites. Piece of cake, right? Well just when things were going so well for you.............a Covenant Drop ship shows up. Only this ship doesn't drop Grunts and Jackals and Elites on foot - it drops pairs of Ghosts piloted by Elites. But that dropship isn't the only Covenant ship in the vicinity. Right in the middle of this fight a Covenant ship in orbit sends a bunch of Elite Drop Canisters right into the middle of the beach. Out comes about 6 or 7 very ready to fight Elites. I like to retreat with the Warthog this time and then get out so the Marines can drive it themselves while I go back and find a Ghost. It's much easier on this next part if you have two vehicles in the fight rather than one. The Marines do a good job of shooting and moving in their Warthog, so they take out their share of the enemy. You need to remember to watch for the Warthog while you are taking out the enemy vehicles and ground troops. No friendly fire incidents here, Spartan! Around the next pier is the third and final area of Covenant, and there is a building near the entrance with Marines taking cover on the roof. Leave your vehicle and go up the ladder inside the building to the roof. There are a bunch of panicked Marines and a rocket launcher! With the Rocket Launcher you can shoot at the Covenant drop ship trying to take out your buddies Warthog and knock it's cannons off. If it leaves, you can send rockets at the fresh group of Ghosts that are attacking. Or the fresh group of Elites that come out of the fresh group of Elite Drop Canisters. It's all up to you. There's also a Jackal in a new watchtower with a very accurate beam rifle, so you need to do something about him. I gave him a rocket. Once all the Elites in the beach are dead, the Warthog will drive up a rugged stone embankment and enter a underground highway tunnel. Follow in the Ghost and be ready for two Elites who will suddenly show up in Ghosts. Take them out, and then use the Ghost to proceed down the highway. Mission Objective: Take the Highway Tunnel to the bridge. There's a fresh Ghost sitting abandoned at the end of this first section of the highway, so you can exchange vehicles if you're present Ghost is too damaged. Next, take the opening to the left and go down the highway; the new part of the level loads and shows the title: "Speed Zone Ahead" Up the highway you will soon see the Warthog beginning to engage some Covenant. These Marines know their stuff; they take out several Jackals, an Elite and an Elite driving a Ghost, and if you don't get in there soon you won't even get a piece of the action. Once the Covenant roadblock is a smoldering ruin, the Warthog will advance, so you follow it. A second roadblock appears, and you want to concentrate on the plasma turrent gun that is elevated on the walkway to the left. Take it out before it can concentrate any fire on the Warthog. About this time, a SECOND Warthog usually shows up and joins the fun. As you advance down the highway again, you will come upon a broken section sticking up; as you prepare to drive over it, the Drones attack! It's the Attack of the Drones! (Great title for a movie, huh?) The two LAG guns take most of these guys out. Ahead is another roadblock; the Marines will mostly handle this, and watch how they use the Warthog to move most of the obstacles out of the way. (Note: I actually hopped into the driver's seat of one of the Warthogs when they stopped advancing and drove up to this next roadblock thinking I had cleared it. Well there was a Jackal still alive hiding behind one of the Covenant crates. He started taking shots at the second Warthog. I simply drove my Warthog into the crate, moving it into the Jackal, until he was crushed by it against the over turned bus behind him and killed. Way to go, Bungie!) As you top the rise beyond this last roadblock, watch closely up ahead. You will suddenly see a Warthog jump through a hole in the Highway tunnel roof and land on the highway. It is immediately destroyed by a huge plasma blast. Poor bastards! Move up and look up quickly through the hole. It's that #$#$%$# Scarab again, the one that shot you down! Now quickly get ready, because two Ghosts are coming for the stranded Marines on the walkway to the right. With the Warthogs two LAGs though, these Ghosts aren't much of a problem. Further ahead there are Covenant gathered around a great big Purple Ghost tank; these are slow vehicles that carry cannons and have a Ghost held in a compartment in their middle. Take it out, but watch out for the plasma cannons mounted on top of these Ghost Tanks. After you take this one out, further on down the Highway you will encounter 3 more, and the fire from cannon's mounted on these is intense. If you're driving one of the Warthogs, try to stay just close enough that the Marine on the LAG can engage the rearmost Ghost Tank, but don't get so close that the plasma cannon's pound you unmercifully. One by one the Ghost Tanks will blow up; they may stop and an Elite will try to run to the Ghost and come after you, but so far none have successfully pulled that off. At the end of this latest Highway tunnel section is another roadblock of Covenant with plasma turrets and Ghosts. If your two Warthogs weren't able to knock out that last Ghost Tank, it will drive up to the far wall and park itself, joiniong it's plasma cannon to the firepower of the Ghosts, turret guns and the Elites on foot. Keep moving, take the cannons and turret guns out first, then concentrate on the ground troops. If you get hit, simply drive away and wait for your shield to come back up. Once all of these Covenant are dead, head past them up the rise of the road and you will suddenly see the end of the tunnel appear ahead. You've done it! You've reached the Bridge! Now the REAL fun is going to start! Level V: Metropolis Take the Bridge and drive into the city's center. Ladies Like Grinding Treads Mission Objective: Crush Covenant resistance on the bridge. A cutscene ensues in which the ever irrepressible Sgt. Johnson shows up in a Pelican and has very thoughtfully brought a Scorpion Tank with him. Which is great because that &*%%@!#$!@# Scarab just passed by and blew through a platoon of Marines, of whom there are only two survivors. When one of the Marines wants to retreat, Sgt. Johnson stops him and lets this new generation of Marines know just how blessed they are - when he joined the Corps all they had was two sticks and a rock! And they all had to share the rock! After this little bit of 'encouragement' he lets everyone know that while the Scarabs are tough, they ain't invincible. They've run simulations, you see. Er....ah....simulations? Anyway, it's time to go to work, Spartan! You have a choice of the Scorpion Tank or the Warthog sitting over there on the right. Only take the Warthog if you REALLY want a challenge on this level. Things are far easier in the Tank. If you take the Warthog, the key will be constant movement. I found this works better when you drive it yourself instead of one of the Marines, because while the AI is really quite improved in this game over the last one, there are still places where the Marine driver will drive into something and pause for a few seconds before backing up - and this level is going to be so intense, you do not want your vehicle stopped at any time. Taking the Warthog also means the enemy will get closer to you than if you took the Tank; the Tank's cannon has a longer reach than the Warthog's LAG. And obviously, the armor of the tank gives you much better protection than the Warthog does, though the Marines are more exposed as they sit on the sides of the Tank. If you make it halfway down the bridge and then the enemy manages to disable your vehicle, you will have to either continue with any surviving Marines on foot or turn back and retreat to get the other vehicle at the point where you started. You can also steal a Ghost from one of the enemy, if you get close enough. So you have several options here. Most people will opt to take the Tank, but keep in mind the Warthog and Ghost stealing is also an option. Whichever vehicle you choose, head down the bridge and get ready because right away you will see multiple pairs of Ghosts making their way down the bridge towards you. If you are in the Tank, engage them from a distance with the cannon and turn the machine gun on any that manage to survive long enough to get close. Your Marines will also help; one has a rocket launcher and he's a pretty good shot with it. If you are in the Warthog, you will have to let the enemy get closer before engaging them, and here's where all the wrecked vehicles on the bridge really come in handy. You can dart behind them and lay in ambush for the Ghosts, moving in and out from behind cover. When taking the Warthog, before you move down the bridge, make sure the Marine with the rocket launcher gets in the side seat. If he's the one that jumps on the turret, go over and make him get off by holding down the blue 'X' button and manning the LAG yourself. You may have to make the female Marine get out of the side seat a few times, but it is important that the rocket launcher be in play if you are going to have a real chance to make it to the other side of the bridge. When you are 1/4 of the way down the bridge a Wraith tank will begin firing at you from it's position 3/4ths of the way down the bridge. The key to avoiding the Wraith Tank's fire is to KEEP MOVING. If you pause your tank for even a few seconds, or get stuck trying to push a overturned vehicle out of your path, he will zero in on you and drop a huge blast of super-hot plasma right on top of you. One direct hit in the Warthog, and you all die. In the Tank, just the Marines will die from the first blast; a second hit will kill you. Keep moving at all times and take out the many Ghosts that come swarming down the bridge. Soon you will see the Wraith Tank moving from side to side in the distance as it fires at you. Start taking shots at it with the Tanks's cannon as soon as you see it, because the sooner you knock this enemy weapon out of the fight the better. If you're in the Warthog, keep moving and circling and even retreating quickly so the Wraith gunner will never get a good fix on you. Although the Warthog moves faster than the tank, it has to get closer to do real damage to the Wraith, and it will take longer for the LAG gun to disable it. The key to taking out the Wraith tank with the Warthog is to NOT STAY IN FRONT OF IT BUT DRIVE PAST IT AND THEN CIRCLE IT. If you try to play hide-and-seek with it using crashed vehicles the way you did with the Ghosts, it will take you out easily with it's main cannon. When you are close enough, the Wraith's plasma guns will begin firing at you. Just keep moving and drive right on past this Wraith and it will begin to turn around to find you again. Of course, by the time it finishes turning around, you'll have made a turn and.......driven right by it again the other way. And again of course, this entire time your Marine manning the LAG will have shot this Wraith with a couple hundred rounds. Four or five seconds of sustained fire from the LAG and the Wraith will blow up. 4 Ghosts will also quickly show up when you get close to the Wraith, so don't relax when the Wraith goes up; keep moving until all the Ghosts are out of action. Then watch for the Covenant Drop ships that will begin flying by and who will take shots at you with their cannons. This will be followed by some Banshees and a few more Ghosts. If things get too hot, you can always back up and get some cover from a broken down bus or barricade. When you approach the far side of the bridge, another Marine will show up with a rocket launcher, which is great because 4 Banshees are going to appear and begin trying to strafe you from the air. If you are driving the Tank, this new Marine will hop aboard as a passenger. If you're in the Warthog, he'll stay on foot and give you assistance, so be careful you don't run him over. If in the Tank, simply back up behind a barricade and practice your long- range cannon skills and knock the Banshees out the air from a distance. Aim slightly in front of these flying Banshees and get a feel for how much you have to lead them before firing. It takes two hits to knock most of them out the air, and you will see the Banshee go spinning off in one direction while it's hapless former pilot, a Blue Elite, will be seen desperately and futilely waving his arms and legs as he falls to the hard concrete below with a SPLAT! If in the Warthog, simply keep driving around and the Marine on the LAG and the Marines with their rocket launchers will try to knock the Banshees out of the air. Use the emergency brake alot to quickly change direction, as this befuddles the Elites flying the Ghosts and Banshees so they can't give you any accurate return fire. When you pass the last barricade on the bridge, and see the toll booth ahead of you, several more Ghosts will show up, along with several Banshees - and TWO more Wraith tanks! The key to surival here is to work your way from the top down. If you try to move in and take out the Ghosts and Wraith Tanks without dealing with the Banshees first, you'll be pounded hard from the air and will have little chance of success. Pull back and target the Banshees first. Any Ghosts that get too close your Marine on the LAG can deal with them. If in the Tank, target the Banshees with the cannon. Then move in and take out any remaining Ghosts. The trick to taking the Wraiths out is to keep moving and keep firing at them; it takes 2, sometimes 3 good hits to blow them up with the Scorpion's cannon. If in the Warthog, park it behind some cover and hop out and get the Marine with the Rocket Launcher to give it to you. You should have at least 2-3 rockets in it. Also, if the soldier who joined you later is still alive, he has some rocket rounds he can give you. If the rockets don't work, try driving into the area in front of the toll booth and retreating back up the bridge, luring the Banshees after you. This is a strategy of attrition however, because you will take damage doing this. Usually your LAG gunner will knock them out. Sometimes they kill your LAG gunner. Once the Banshees are down, move in and take out any remaining Ghosts and ignore any fire from the Wraith tanks (except to dodge it, of course). Once only the Wraith tanks are left, move and and do what you did for the first one; drive up close and pass them repeatedly so that they have to keep turning around to find you while your LAG gunner shoots them full of holes. Once they both blow up, head down the tunnel these two Wraiths came out of. Mission Objective: Make your way to the surface. You will see some disabled vehicles littering this Highway tunnel, and the scene looks safe, but don't be fooled, there are Covenant down there. Don't believe me? Then shoot the white truck in the distance near the curve of the tunnel with your Scorpion Tank's cannon, or a rocket. See? Told ya! An Elite and a few panicked Grunts will come into view and retreat down the tunnel. As you pass the white truck you just blew up, and come around the curve, a checkpoint will load and you will see Warthog with some of Uncle Sam's Misguided Children in it coming down a ramp to get into the fight. Fight? What fight, you ask? Why, the fight you're about to have with the Covenant roadblock up ahead, of course! There are Jackals moving around on top of the roadblock, so take them out first. Once the enemies are all dead (ever note that we don't take prisoners in this war?) any living Marines with you will go join the Marines from the other Warthog and charge up a ramp towards the next part of the tunnel. There's nowhere for the Scorpion to go if you're still driving it, so you will have to leave it here and go on on foot. (Note: You CAN drive a Warthog up this next ramp and into the area beyond this roadblock, but be advised: the area beyond is VERY cluttered with crates and wrecked vehicles so you will not have much manuevering room at all. Plus the chance of your running over one of your own Marines is very high.) Beyond the roadblock, your Marines will take cover behind a barricade as they regroup. Then a very sizable group of Covenant will suddenly appear at the far end of this section, and an intense firefight will ensue. Try to make sure as many Marines survive as possible. If you have the Battle Rifle, try sniping the Jackal snipers firing from an elevated position at the far end. There are several Elites in this bunch, including two Red Elites, so this fight could last some time. The best strategy is to chuck grenades at the biggest group of enemy and then use your small arms to take down the survivors. Once all the Covenant are dead, follow the Marines up a ramp on the far end where red light can be seen shining out. At the end of this tunnel is a opening that reveals a very wide plaza with a flat, open structure in it's center that is crawling with Elite. Mission Objective: Regroup with Marine forces in the city-center. Let the Marines go first and watch the neat way they sneak up on that Jackal sentry and take him out. The best spot on this level for cover is to the left of the tunnel entrance behind the big columns. Go where the walkway can be seen and aim around the corner and snipe all the Jackals manning that walkway with your Battle Rifle. Another Warthog with Marines in it will show up and run around on the floor shooting, but don't jump down and join them; these guys always get taken out. You have to snipe and take down all the enemies on the high ground before venturing onto the floor. After all the Jackals are dead, the Red Elites show up! For them, you need a more powerful weapon. Run back to the way you came in, and just to the right of the tunnel mouth will be a dead Marine with a sniper rifle. Yes! Use it take the Red Elites out. Try to spend no more than two bullets per Elite; there will be about 4 of them, so it should take around 8 bullets. Now two Ghosts will show up. If you have enough bullets left, you can try to snipe the Elites driving these Ghosts; it won't damage the Ghost and it will be available for you to drive yourself later. If any of the Marines survived, when you approach the big opening through which the Ghosts came on the far side of the plaza, they will jump into any available vehicles and go charging into the next Plaza. The only problem with that is there are a bunch of Ghosts and a very far off Wraith Tank on the other side. If you have the sniper rife try to take out the Elite and the Jackal sniper standing just behind the Wraith tank. Then DUCK BACK BEHIND THE DOORWAY. Every time the Wraith Tank senses you it will send a cannon blast right to where you're standing. You cannot afford to be caught standing still in this other Plaza. You have to lean around the doorway, sight, fire, and retreat, all in about 5 or 6 seconds before that plasma round reaches you. If you have the Rocket Launcher, go for the Wraith Tank with it. Watch out for Ghosts. If you can't get a good shot at the Wraith, and all your rocket rounds are gone and the Elites driving the Ghosts are giving you fits when you try to move forward, here's an alternative strategy, but it requires good flying ability with a Ghost. You should have one drivable Ghost on your side of the door from the two Elites you sniped. Get in one........fly into the next plaza and find the Ghosts and take them out. They often hover on the right hand side of this new plaza, so you must quickly fly into the plaza then turn right and find them. Shoot one at a time, then turn and RUN FOR IT before the Jackal snipers and the Wraith Tank take you out. It took me 10 trips into the plaza and my Ghost was shot to hell, but it still flew and I got the first two Ghosts PLUS the FOUR that flew in after that. Yeah, it's tough and you will probably die several times, but once all the Ghosts are destroyed, and the Wraith Tank is out of the way, you can advance into the tunnel opening the Wraith tank was guarding and procede into the center of the city, where you will see some Marines in a Warthog taking on a Ghost, which soon explodes. What? Is that it? You fought all the way to the city center for this? One measly Ghost? Well don't worry, Spartan! THERE'S TWO WRAITH TANKS, JACKAL SNIPERS ON WALKWAYS AND A COVENANT DROP SHIP INCOMING RIGHT AROUND THE CORNER AHEAD ON THE LEFT. HAVE FUN!!!!! If you want to, you can jump into the Turret Gun or drive the Warthog, but you need to run over there very fast and get in before the checkpoint does, because when it loads the Warthog is going to head up around the corner on the left to take on the Wraith tanks.........and it always gets blown up. Your best bet for doing with fast with minimal damage is a Ghost. Fly in, never stop moving, shoot at the first Wraith and then pass by it and focus on the second, shooting at both of them in one pass. Then turn and RUN your Ghost back the way you came - squeeze the left trigger for the Boost and hold on! Get around the corner and then regroup to come back for another pass. If the Jackal Snipers are tagging you, take the Ghost up the steps onto the Walkway and run them over. While you are trying to deal with these Wraith tanks and Jackal snipers, as if that wasn't enough for you to deal with, a Covenant Drop Ship will show up. Your one consolation is that if you're moving they can't hit you very well. The Covenant Drop Ship will leave after a minute or so, and you can concentrate again on the Wraith Tanks. If you can find a Rocket Launcher, a good strategy is to drive up on to the walkway (this is after all the Jackals are dead), jump out of your vehicle, aim over the side, fire a rocket into a Wraith, jump back in the vehicle, and GET OUT OF THERE before the Wraiths send a plasma round where you were standing when you fired. When both Wraith tanks are destroyed, or maybe even while they are still going,a Pelican drop ship will show up and disgorge some Marines on the walkway. At the doorway of the building the Wraiths were guarding, a Marine will appear and babble about the Scarab that's coming. Yep, that's right. The Scarab that gave you a rude introduction to this whole level is on the way. Follow the soldier up the stairs and onto a balcony. Look off in the distance: there's the Scarab, coming around the corner to the right! Oh great, there's a Scorpion in it's path. We've seen the Scorpion destroy everything in it's path so far in these games, right? Let's see how this goes.......... The Scorpion fires 4 or 5 rounds into the Scarab........and nothing happens. Uh-oh. Now the Scarab generates energy to that huge plasma cannon in it's 'head' and fires, instantly destroying the most powerful vehicle in the human aresnal. Double uh-oh. Now the Marines with you on the balcony will fire away at the Scarab as it nonchalantly climbs right over the building your standing in. Follow the Marine again up the stairs and into a new building, then onto a huge walkway. You will see the Scarab walking parallel to this long walkway. Quickly run ahead of the Scarab and get the Rocket Launcher on the crate to the right. Then running to keep ahead of the Scarab, pick a spot between the pillars where you have a good view over the edge, let the Scarab walk into your sights, and take out the large number of Grunts and Red Elites that are covering it's back platform. Keep doing this until you run out of rockets. The Scarab will walk all the way down underneath this walkway until it meets a wall; it will then slowly and laborousily turn to the left and continue on until it comes to the end of a dam and can go no further. It will then come to a stop. All along this walkway there are various weapons for you to pick up; A Rocket Launcher, Battle Rifles, Sniper Rifles, Shotguns, frag grenades and ammo. For what you are about to do, the shotgun and the Submachine Gun work best. You see, you're about to board the Scarab and destroy it. Mission Objectives: Board the Scarab and destroy it. There are still two Red Elites running around on the Scarab's back, so you will have to take them out. Once they're dead, take a running jump and go between the turret gun on the side of the walkway and the crates and land on the Scarab's back. Toward the back of the Scarab you will see a doorway with a ramp leading down into the control room. There are 3 or 4 Grunts, a Blue Elite, a Gray Elite, and a Red Elite down there waiting for you. Here's a good strategy: First sneak down the ramp, then quickly throw a grenade down the left hand side of the control room, then move sideways and quickly throw a Grenade down the right-hand side of the control room. Then.........RUN..........back up the ramp and when you get to the top, wait until you see red dots on your motion tracker, or maybe even a really pissed off Blue Elite at the bottom of the ramp, and throw a third grenade right at the base of the ramp. That should take care of most of the Grunts and maybe one of the Elites. Try it again, only this time just throw a grenade down the left hand side before retreating. If you had a full complement of Grenades (and you should considering all the grenades you ran by on that walkway)you should have one or two left. At the base of the ramp on the next trip down, look quickly to see if any of the Grunts dropped a plasma grenade. Frag grenades don't seem to affect these Red Elites like plasma ones does. One of these Elites down here will have a Energy sword; if you can drop him and then pick it up (I kept the shotgun and traded the Battle Rifle for the Energy Sword)this Sword will kill the Red Elite faster than anything else. The Red Elite will usually try to stay near the Control Panel at the front, so you have room to toss a grenade at him. Then shoot him repeatedly with the shotgun as he charges you to get his shield down, and when he's just a few steps away, VOILA'! Switch to the Energy Sword and pull the right trigger to cut him down. Usually it takes two cuts with the Energy Sword to kill this last Red Elite. If his shield is all the way up, it could take three hits. Once he's dead.............cutscene time! You see Master Chief walking down the exit ramp like the cool dude he is as the Scarab blows apart behind him. While this is going on, a Pelican lands next to Master Chief with Sgt. Johnson inside. It seems the Covenant Flagship is preparing to enter hyperspace! Miranda Keyes gets permission to follow, and this level ends with a devastating cinematic as we see the fallout from the Covenant Flagships in atmosphere space-jump cause a nuclear reaction that wipes New Mombasa off the map! Those Covenant bastards! The adventure continues in Level VI, coming on Saturday: The Arbiter!