Assassination

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For the medal see Assassin.
Assassination in Halo 4.
A slow-motion example of one of the many Assassinations in Halo: Reach.

The Assassination is a gameplay feature that allows player to enter a third-person view while elaborately taking an enemy player down with a close combat weapon usually a Combat Knife, Energy dagger, Energy Sword, Gravity Hammer, Ball/Bomb or their hands, knees, legs and feet. Note that assassinations are different from beat downs and pummels. Pummels are kills from a normal melee attack; a beat down occurs when Player A melees Player B by simply tapping the melee button while behind them, resulting in an instant kill. An assassination occurs when Player A presses and holds the melee button when directly behind Player B, resulting in an elaborate kill and will earn the player a special medal. Assassinations have been featured in Halo: Reach, Halo 4, and Halo 5: Guardians. Assassinations performed in Halo: Reach multiplayer matchmaking also count towards the Rear Admiral commendation; those performed in Halo 4 matchmaking and Spartan Ops advance the Assassin and Backstab commendations respectively.

Mechanics[edit]

There are four different basic assassination types that are played according to the species of the players and the current situation: If both players are on the ground, if the assassin is in the air and the victim is on the ground, if both players are in the air, and if the assassin and the victim are both on the ground, but the assassin is higher in elevation than the victim. [1]

The specific assassination animation that is used when both players are on the ground is dependent of where the initial melee lands on the victim's body.

There are also unique assassinations that can be performed when the player is holding an Energy Sword, Gravity Hammer or Ball/Bomb.

Halo: Reach[edit]

Spartan vs. Spartan[edit]

A Spartan assassinating another Spartan.

When playing as a Spartan in Halo: Reach matchmaking, you can perform several different assassinations using your combat knife that is located on different parts of your armor, depending on what chest piece you are wearing.

Both players are on the ground

This assassination involves Player A standing on the same surface as Player B. The specific animation that is used varies depending on which part of the back is meleed.

  • The initial melee hits the right shoulder of player B: Player B is spun around to face player A. Holding the knife with the blade pointed up in his/her clenched fist, player A "punches" player B in the chest, stabbing him or her.
  • The initial melee hits the right side of player B's back: Player B turns to face player A, who raises his/her combat kife and plunges it down on player B's head.
  • The initial melee hits the center of player B's back: Holding the knife with the blade pointed down in his/her fist, player A forcefully stabs player B in the back, and player B is dragged to the side when the knife is removed.
  • The initial melee hits the left side of player B's back: Player A spins the knife, stab's player B in the back, then tosses the body off to the side.
Player A is more elevated than player B, but both are on a surface

Player A extends their arm around player B's neck, bending their stomach outward, then stabbing him/her in the gut.

Both players are airborne

This assassination involves Player A jumping (or possibly falling) right behind (Close enough proximity to melee) Player B. Player A will initiate the assassination, which involves player A wrapping his/her hands together, and delivers a smash on player B's head.

Note: if the assassin is wielding an Energy Sword, the animation will be bugged.

The assassin is airborne, but the victim is not

Player B is knocked to the ground, face down. Player A steps on his/her back, crouches down, and snaps their neck.

Spartan vs. Elite[edit]

A Spartan assassinating an Elite.
Both players are on the ground

This assassination involves Player A standing on the same surface as Player B. The specific animation that is used varies depending on which part of the back is melee'd.

  • The initial melee hits the right shoulder of player B: The Spartan pounces on the Elite's chest, pushing them both to the ground. While the Elite struggles, the Spartan stabs the Elite in the eye.
  • The initial melee hits the right side of player B's back: The Spartan hops on the Elite's back, then the Spartan stabs the Elite in the neck.
  • The initial melee hits the center of player B's back: The Spartan slices the Elite's legs, then stabs him in the back on the head, and pulls the Elite to the ground.
  • The initial melee hits the left side of player B's back: The same as if the melee hit the right side of the back, but the Spartan snaps the Elite's neck instead of stabbing him.
Player A is more elevated than player B, but both are on a surface

The Spartan hops and hangs off of the Elite's back, and jumps straight to the top of the Elites head resulting in a brutal skull-cracker.

Both players are airborne

The Spartan goes to the Elite's back, and quickly stabs him in the neck.

The assassin is airborne, but the victim is not

The Elite is pushed to the ground. The Spartan jumps and lands on the Elite's head, then hops off.

Spartan vs. Grunt[edit]

A Spartan assassinating a Grunt.
  • The initial melee hits the right shoulder: The player grabs the Grunt and breaks its neck.
  • The initial melee hits the left shoulder: The player grabs the Grunt and stabs it in the head.

Spartan vs. Brute[edit]

A Spartan assassinating a Brute.
  • The player pushes the Brute down, then stabs it in the back. These are done with mixed difficulty.

Spartan vs. Jackal/Skirmisher[edit]

Elite vs. Spartan[edit]

An Elite assassinating a Spartan.
Both players are on the ground

This assassination involves Player A standing on the same surface as Player B. The specific animation that is used varies depending on which part of the back is meleed.

  • The initial melee hits the right shoulder of player B: The Elite slashes the Spartan across the chest with his energy dagger, then hits the Spartan with a turning side kick.
  • The initial melee hits the right side of player B's back: The Spartan is pushed to the ground, face down. The Elite stabs the Spartan in the lower back, and the Spartan is dragged as the blade is pulled out.
  • The initial melee hits the center of player B's back: The Elite rapidly stabs the Spartan in the lower back with his energy daggers, then does a diagonal slash to the back of the Spartan's knees.
  • The initial melee hits the left side of player B's back: The Elite activates the energy dagger, and proceeds to stab the Spartan directly down on their head.
Player A is more elevated than player B, but both are on a surface

The Elite activates the dagger on their right hand, impales the right side of the back of the Spartan's neck, then does the same with his left dagger to the left side.

Both players are airborne

The Elite knees the Spartan in the back, impales him/her with the energy dagger, then flicks them behind and over his head.

The assassin is airborne, but the victim is not

The Spartan is pushed to the ground. The Elite steps on the Spartan's back, then stabs them in the back of the head.

Elite vs. Elite[edit]

An Elite assassinating another Elite.
Both players are on the ground

This assassination involves Player A standing on the same surface as Player B. The specific animation that is used varies depending on which part of the back is meleed.

  • The initial melee hits the right shoulder of player B: Player A flicks their wrist, springing the energy dagger out, and stab's the victim in the lower back. As the blade is pulled out, the victim is dragged backward.
  • The initial melee hits the right side of player B's back: The assassin stabs the victim in the back of the head, with the dagger protruding out of the victims open mouth. The assassin pulls the victim backwards, then throws them forward, de-activating the energy dagger.
  • The initial melee hits the center of player B's back; the assassin reaches across the victim's chest, bending him so their unarmored stomach protrudes. The assassin then stabs the victim there with his energy dagger, and pushes the body to the ground.
Player A is more elevated than player B, but both are on a surface

The assassin grabs the victim by the top of their "jaw", activates his energy dagger, and stabs the victim in the neck. The assassin then drops the body.

Both players are airborne

The assassin quickly jabs the victim in the lower back with his energy dagger.

The assassin is airborne, but the victim is not

The victim recoils forward from the initial melee. The assassin activates one of their energy daggers, stabs the victim in the lower back, quickly activates the second dagger, and plunges it into the back of the victim's neck with an overhand motion. With both prongs still inside the victim, the assassin throws the body of the victim behind him.

Energy Sword[edit]

  • Spartan vs. Spartan: Player A hits Player B with an upward diagonal slash, spinning them around. He then stabs them in the gut.
  • Spartan vs. Elite: The Spartan jumps and stands on the Elite's back, and stabs the Elite with the prongs of the sword in the neck.
  • Elite vs. Spartan: The Elite grabs the Spartan by the hand, drags them upwards, then stabs them down through the chest.
  • Elite vs. Elite: Player A grabs Player B's left hand, and pulls it, causing him to trip and fall. Player A then swipes the sword in an underhand motion, causing Player B's body to flip over.

Halo 4[edit]

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Assassinations have returned in Halo 4. Assassinations in Halo 4 seem to be based off of the angle at which the initial melee is performed rather than hitting a specific portion of the victim's back, as in Halo: Reach. A new medal, Airsassination, is awarded for midair assassinations. Players can now perform assassinations with Flags in Capture the Flag (rewarding Flagsassination medal) and with the Skull in Oddball and Grifball (rewarding Ballsassination medal).[2] All forms of Prometheans can also be assassinated in campaign and Spartan Ops. [3] However, a Promethean Watcher will continue reviving a fallen Promethean or its Hardlight Shield while being assassinated.

Spartan vs. Spartan[edit]

A Spartan assassinating another Spartan.
Both assassin and victim are on level ground
  • Initial melee hits directly on the victim's right shoulder (four o'clock), and victim IS NOT standing near a ledge: The assassin grabs the victim, and pulls them to their side. The assassin then buries the knife in the victim's throat, and pulls his or her body to the left.
  • Initial melee hits directly on the victim's right shoulder (four o'clock), and victim IS standing near a ledge: The assassin wraps their hand around the victim's face. While the victim struggles to free themselves, the assassin stabs the victim in the back of the head.
  • Initial melee hits right side of victim's back (five o'clock): The assassin grabs the back of the victim's collar, and tugs him or her backwards, sending them on their back. The assassin then pulls a knife, and stabs the victim in the heart from just above the sternum.
  • Initial melee hits from directly behind victim (six o'clock): The assassin grabs the back of the victim's chestplate, and forces him down. He/she then stabs the victim in the base of their neck, then kicks the victim, dislodging their body from the assassin's knife.
  • Initial melee hits from the perpendicular of the victim's shoulders (seven o'clock): The assassin forces the victim down on their left knee, and breaks the victim's spine.
  • Initial melee hits the center of victim's back (eight o'clock): The assassin tackles the target, sending them sprawling. The assassin then raises their knife, and stabs the victim in the face.
Assassin is airborne, but victim is not
  • The assassin lands on the victim in a piggyback, and while the victim is forced on their knees, the assassin twists the victim's head, snapping their neck.
Both the assassin and victim are airborne
  • The assassin stabs the victim in the shoulder, sending him straight down.

Weapon Exclusive[edit]

Energy Sword[edit]

A Spartan assassinating another Spartan with an Energy Sword.
  • The assassin impales the victim through the back, and hoists him/her in the air.

Oddball[edit]

A Spartan assassinating another Spartan with an Oddball.
Both assassin and victim are on level ground
  • The victim turns to face the assassin. The assassin then violently slams the Oddball into the victims chin, sending him/her flying into the air, and causing the victim to disintegrate.
Assassin is airborne, but victim is not
  • The assassin knocks the victim onto their hands and knees. While the victim attempts to escape, the assassin crushes the victim's skull with the Oddball causing the victim to disintegrate.

Flag[edit]

A Spartan assassinating another Spartan with a Flag.
  • The assassin slams the base of the flagpole into the victim's head, sending them sprawling. The assassin then stands above the victim, and spears the victim's head with the flag causing him/her to disintegrate.

Flood vs. Spartan[edit]

A Flood assassinating a Spartan.
Both assassin and victim are on level ground
  • The assassin leaps onto the victim, impaling them in the chest. When the victim attempts to escape, the assassin then slams their claw into the victim's head, killing them instantly.
Assassin is airborne, but victim is not
  • The assassin pushes the victim onto their back, slashes at their head twice, then snarls at the victim.

Spartan vs. Flood[edit]

  • Spartan vs. Flood assassinations are identical to Spartan vs. Spartan, despite the fact that the Flood is unlikely to be affected by such an attack.
A Spartan Assassinating a Flood.

Campaign/Spartan Ops[edit]

Grunt[edit]

Both assassin and victim are on level ground
  • The Spartan spins the Grunt around to face them. From there, the Spartan buries the knife into the Grunt's head.
  • The Spartan wraps one hand around the Grunt's neck, lifting it from the ground. The Spartan then grips the Grunt's scalp, and breaks its jaw.
Assassin is airborne, but victim is not
  • The Spartan tackles the Grunt to the ground. The Grunt turns its head to look at its attacker, and the Spartan stabs it in the neck.

Jackal[edit]

A Spartan assassinating a Jackal.
Both assassin and victim are on level ground
  • The Spartan grabs the Jackal's left wrist, and thrusts his/her knee into the right side of the Jackal's head, dazing it. The Jackal then looks back, and the Spartan stabs it in the side of the neck.
  • The Spartan sweeps its arm under the Jackal, tripping it. The Spartan then buries their knife into their neck.
Assassin is airborne, but victim is not
  • The Spartan tackles the Jackal, and rolls into a standing position, sending the Jackal onto the ground. As it gets up, the Spartan embeds their knife into the back of its neck.

Elite[edit]

  • The Spartan leaps onto the Elite's back. While the Elite thrashes around, attempting to dislodge the Spartan, the Spartan then stabs it in the neck
  • The Spartan grapples the Elite's head, bending it backwards. As the Elite flails around, the Spartan twists its neck, snapping it.
  • The Spartan violently punches the Elite's pelvis, paralysing it. Then, the Spartan stabs the Elite in the side of the neck, and throws the body down onto the ground.
  • The Spartan tackles the Elite, and stabs it in the eye.

Promethean Crawlers[edit]

Both assassin and target are on level ground
  • The Spartan stabs the Crawler in the head, and then grabs its tail. While the Crawler wrestles to free itself, the Spartan kicks it away, causing the Crawler to explode.
  • The Spartan leaps onto the Crawler's back, and grabs its mandibles. As the Crawler attempts to buck its attacker off, the Spartan tears the Crawler's face apart.
Assassin is airborne, but victim is not
  • The Spartan lands on the Crawler, flipping it onto its back. It punches the Crawler in the leg, and while the Crawler flails its legs, the Spartan then stabs it in the belly.

Promethean Knight[edit]

John-117 assassinating a Promethean Knight (click for animation).
Both assassin and target are on level ground
  • The Spartan grabs the Knight's hard light blade and tears it from its arm. The Spartan then spins the knife, cutting off one of the Knight's smaller arms, then stabs the Knight in the head with the blade.
  • The Spartan clenches one of the Knight's smaller arms, and spins it round to face him/her. As soon as the Knight has stopped turning, the Spartan stabs it in the underside of the head.
Assassin is airborne, but victim is not
  • The Spartan grabs onto the Knight's backpack, and spins around, sending it onto the ground. As the Knight attempts to get up, the Spartan plunges its hand into its back, and rips something out, causing the Knight to disintegrate.

Promethean Watcher[edit]

  • The Spartan grabs onto the right circle of the Watcher. While it attempts to shake the Spartan off, the Spartan pulls out a knife, and uppercuts it through the Watcher's body, causing it to explode.

Halo 5: Guardians[edit]

In Halo 5: Guardians, assassinations are introduced into Spartan customization, allowing players to choose from a number of different animations. The various new animations are unlocked via the Requisition system.

Spartan vs Spartan[edit]

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Beat Downs vs. Assassinations[edit]

With normal beat downs, one will quickly melee the opponent's back, resulting in an instant kill, but will stay in first person view. This earns them a medal but no credit or commendation increase. With an assassination, the player goes into third person view and performs a special finishing move. In campaign, assassinations are not silent and will alert nearby enemies. During an assassination, the player runs a risk of getting their kill stolen by a teammate, which results in the teammate getting a Yoink medal in Halo: Reach. The player is also able to be damaged and even killed during the animation, which will cause the victim to be saved and the savior will get a Showstopper medal. This makes assassinations relatively unpopular for fast paced gametypes such as Oddball or Team SWAT. Also, performing assassinations will negate fall damage, unlike beat downs. This allows players to survive fatal falls if an enemy happens to be directly below. This is featured in the achievement If They Came to Hear Me Beg.

Trivia[edit]

  • Because assassinations are naturally a one-hit kill, any of them performed with an Energy Sword do not deplete the sword's charge, nor do they count toward the weapon spree medals Sword Spree, Slice 'N Dice or Cutting Crew. Also, if the assassin is holding a depleted Energy Sword, assassinations will still animate with the deactivated sword, that is, the enemy will be impaled by an invisible blade.
  • Early in the Halo: Reach Multiplayer Beta, players could assassinate their teammates with full assassination animations, resulting in a betrayal.
  • There was an assassination in the Halo: Reach Multiplayer Beta where an airborne Elite would stab a groundside Elite through the head with an energy dagger, then pull it out with some resistance. This animation was removed in the final game.
  • The Elite-vs-Spartan assassination triggered by hitting the Spartan's right shoulder, if performed along a ledge, has become known among the community as the "Sparta Kick" assassination, as it resembles a scene from the film 300 where the Spartan Leonidas kills a Persian messenger by kicking him down a well. Ironically, this assassination involves the Spartan being killed instead of doing the killing.
  • The Grunt assassination involving breaking the Grunt's neck has also become known on Bungie.net as the "Grunt Buddy" assassination, as it is commonly freeze-framed to make it look as if the Spartan is giving the Grunt a one-armed hug while giving a thumbs up with his other hand.
  • Even though the player is killing an enemy during an assassination, AI allies will still regard the enemies as alive, and will continue to fire at the enemy being assassinated, which may result in the player having their kill stolen, losing health, or even dying from friendly fire.
  • Drones, Hunters, and Engineers cannot be assassinated.
  • Some assassinations require a certain amount of space to perform. If there is not enough space, a different animation than usual will occur, or the animation will be cut short.
  • If an Elite wearing a closed helmet is involved in an Assassination, either killing or being killed, its jaws may clip through its helmet.
  • Occasionally if an online game suffers lag, a player who was assassinated may be revived and continue to fight. Their health may or may not be low. Sometimes the assassin will continue performing the assassination on thin air and the victim will appear to escape, only to die when the assassination is completed.
  • If an assassination is performed on a slope, the two characters involved may end up performing the same animations while standing at the wrong distance from each other. This may cause the assassination to look disconnected, and occasionally cause the knife being used to be stabbed in the wrong place rather than where it was intended. However, this does not affect the outcome, and the attacked character will still die.
  • Some assassinations have enough range to kill a second enemy who stands too close to the attacker.
  • Elites may sometimes laugh after performing an assassination.
  • Performing assassinations by unaware or sleeping enemies may sometimes alert them to the player's presence, if they hear the victim's yells. The only one known that doesn't is the Spartan-vs-Elite assassination that is triggered by attacking from midair, since it involves crushing the Elite's head, thus preventing him from yelling.
  • There are 7 assassinations for each type of scenario, excluding in Campaign and using Energy Sword.
  • The Grunt assassinations seem to be inspired by Cal-141's ways of killing Grunt sentries in The Babysitter.
  • An cut animation for Halo: Reach allowed Sangheili to assassinate Marines and Army troopers. The animation depicted them being grabbed by the head and having their neck snapped.[4]
  • An Assassination that appears in Halo 5: Guardians titled "104 Ways to Die" may be a possible nod to Fred-104, a SPARTAN-II known for his proficiency with knives.

Videos[edit]

Sources[edit]

  1. ^ Bungie, Reach Forum: The Assassination Index Thread: ALL Assassinations With VIDEOS
  2. ^ YouTube: Halo 4 Flag Stabbing and Spartan Cosplay - Comic-Con 2012
  3. ^ YouTube: Halo 4 - Campaign Impressions
  4. ^ Twitter.com, Marcus Lehto: "Oh yeah, that was a good one. Intended to reinforce just how powerful the Elites were."