Covenant watchtower

From Halopedia, the Halo wiki

This article is about the Covenant structure. For other uses of "watchtower", see Watchtower (disambiguation).
A Covenant watchtower from Halo: Reach.
A Covenant watchtower employed during the Fall of Reach.

The Covenant and its remnants deployed a type of watchtower,[1][2] sometimes known as a lookout tower,[3] on the battlefield.[4]


Design details[edit]

The Covenant watchtower is comprised of a circular platform and a gravity base. As a rather ordinary example of technology that enables platform suspension within the Covenant, the gravity base features an anti-gravity generator in its center, from which the circular platform is suspended in the air at a stable and static position. The anti-gravity generator also serves as a gravity lift for transporting supplies and troops freely and swiftly through a gap in the center of the platform.[4]

The protected platforms display a variety of designs. One platform design has three protective pillars with large gaps between them for snipers to have a clear line of sight or for Unggoy Heavy to man their Pek-pattern plasma cannons.[5][6][7] Jul 'Mdama's Covenant employs a variant that has taller pillars.[8] Some platforms have three thinner, longer pillars that support a rooftop-like cover instead of oval pillars.[9] Watchtowers can be connected to an adjacent energy wall, which will activate when the tower is occupied.[10]

The watchtowers are easily installed and activated.[4] Once installed, the platform can be raised or lowered,[9][10] while the base cannot be moved again. Additionally, the platform is not as steady as the base; weapon fire can destroy the platform or knock it out of suspension.[5][6][7][8][9]


The Covenant use watchtowers to fortify specific areas. Typically, they are deployed to establish a perimeter before the construction of a forward operations citadel or other advanced occupation site.[4] The tower is able to garrison a Covenant file,[10] though they are most often occupied by marksmen—usually Kig-Yar Snipers—or Heavy Unggoy manning plasma cannons.[11] During the Battle of Cleveland in 2552, the Covenant also deployed watchtowers in Jacobs Field stadium, which was turned into a makeshift prison camp for captured civilians. [12]

In-game information[edit]

In Halo 2, the watchtowers appear in numerous campaign maps as well as in the multiplayer map, Relic. The platforms are indestructible, though they could be pushed off the base; the base would remain active and hold players in the air.

In Halo 3 and Halo 3: ODST, the watchtowers appear in some campaign levels, with some equipped with plasma cannons. The platforms are destructible, as they would break into debris after sustaining heavy damage.

In Halo Wars, the watchtower is known as Sniper Tower. They are indestructible garrison buildings. In campaign, they are frequently employed by the Covenant, but once the Covenant unit occupying the tower is killed, UNSC soldiers can garrison in it, increasing their combat capabilities. In Skirmish, they are left neutral for either team's taking, providing a useful defense, if needed. Certain maps, such as Tundra or Fort Deen, include watchtowers that are connected to energy walls. When garrisoned, the energy wall activates and prevents ground units from moving through. These walls can be bypassed by air units, Jiralhanae Jumpers, and, if the surrounding terrain allows, Deutoros-pattern Scarabs.[10]

In Halo: Reach, the watchtowers are largely similar to those in Halo 3 with minor aesthetic upgrades. However, unlike in Halo 3 and Halo 3: ODST, where its base gravity lift deactivates when the platform is destroyed, in Halo: Reach the gravity lift remains active even after the platform is removed, much like in Halo 2.

In Halo 4, the watchtowers are very similar to their Halo: Reach counterparts. However, the player must crouch to enter it due to narrower hole of entrance. The base of the tower will always be active and be able to lift vehicles. The base will also explode when heavily damaged, harming those nearby. They were implemented into Forge as part of the game's PC port in Halo: The Master Chief Collection, and are comprised of two objects—a base and a platform.

In Halo Infinite, the Covenant watchtower—based on its design from Halo 3—was made available in Forge's Covenant palette with Content Update 29. It is comprised of two separate objects: the Covenant Watchtower Base and the Covenant Watchtower Platform.[13]

Production notes[edit]

  • Tags for watchtower (and Shades) exist in Halo 3's Snowbound. The watchtowers can be manipulated in Forge, but they have no names, costs, or maximum limits. The watch platforms tend to spontaneously disappear, and do not respawn.
  • In Halo 3 and Halo 3: ODST, the player can detach a watch platform with plasma cannons from the base without destroying it (such as using a Gravity Hammer). If the platform is tilted more than 45 degrees, the game displays a message saying "Inoperable turret" when the player is near the turret. However, any Unggoy manning the turret would remain on the turret.


List of appearances[edit]


  1. ^, Relic Revealed: 6/28/2005: "There are two sniper rifles available on Relic – a Human Sniper spawns right near the wreckage by the offense starting point and a Beam Rifle spawns at the base of the Covenant watchtower." (Retrieved on Oct 13, 2014) [archive]
  2. ^ Halo 3: ODST, campaign level Coastal Highway: "Flank the watchtower, Trooper! Take it out!" - Edward Buck
  3. ^ Halo: Shadows of Reach, chapter 12: "A third round of explosions sounded out on the barrens as John reached the lookout tower at the south end of the shield barrier. Conscious that he had nothing with which to defend himself but a submachine gun and a pistol, he stepped into the tower base and allowed the gravity lift to carry him up to the watch platform."
  4. ^ a b c d Halo Encyclopedia (2022 edition), page 223
  5. ^ a b Halo 3, gameplay
  6. ^ a b Halo 3: ODST, gameplay
  7. ^ a b Halo: Reach, gameplay
  8. ^ a b Halo 4, gameplay
  9. ^ a b c Halo 2, gameplay
  10. ^ a b c d Halo Wars, gameplay
  11. ^ Halo 3, gameplay
  12. ^ Halo: Uprising, issue 2
  13. ^ YouTube - HALO, January Update & HCS 2024 Roadmap | Halo Infinite (Retrieved on Jan 28, 2024)