Halo 2 Multiplayer Map Pack Manual
From Halopedia, the Halo wiki
The Halo 2: Multiplayer Map Pack Manual is a guide to Halo 2 Multiplayer Map Pack that comes in the basic package.
Sections of the Manual
This is the safety information that tells you how to play games safely.
This section goes over a basic idea what multiplayer is in the Halo universe.
Scattered throughout the Orion arm of the galaxy, the flames of conflict burn. As the embers of conquest continue to glow in an infinite sky, a war that has decimated fleets, scorched worlds, and brought to ruin entire systems continues to levy its heavy toll. Millions have perished, and millions more will suffer still — their fates resting on battles great and small.
These skirmishes take place for untold thousands of reasons — a contested strategic location, a surprise encounter with an unexpected foe, or a long- planned assault on a heavily guarded military outpost. The reasons for engagement are many, but the objective is always the same: to survive and emerge victorious... with honor when possible.
The conflicts can conflagrate anywhere opposing forces meet. From a cargo ship hanging silently above Earth to a ruined fortress on a distant world. From an icy and desolate canyon to an idyllic water temple — these are the places that will decide the fate of the galaxy. These are the arenas upon which the struggle to save or destroy humanity will hinge. These are the battlegrounds of Delta Halo and beyond.
This section tell all about how to use the disk and gives a map key.
This section goes over the map Relic.
Map Type: Outdoor, Asymmetrical
"A battle-scarred island rises from the blue waters of a Delta Halo sea- A titanic Forerunner structure juts menacingly from the center like the spine of a beached behemoth."
Evidence of battle is scattered across the sun-baked sands of a lonely island. A crashed Albatross Dropship spills wreckage and materiel onto the wind- scoured beach like an eviscerated seal. Shield formations, vehicle detritus, and combat platforms litter the field. Sandstone formations provide cover, but the huge expanse of low dunes leaves infantry highly vulnerable.
This long map is split savagely down the middle by a hulking Forerunner construct — the home of the objective flag in single-flag CTF matches. Territories is fun as well, as is any mode with enough people.
Relic is unusual amongst Halo 2 maps in that its geometry changes depending on the game type selected. In all of the game modes except CTF and Assault, handy ramps run up the side of the central structure.
That structure is a natural fortress and very easy to defend, making it an incredible challenge for the attacking teams. Openings beneath the Forerunner structure provide shelter as well as access to the teleporter.
Artist Chris Barrett wanted the map to feel familiar. "I wanted to capture some of the feel of the original Halo," he says. "In this case, one of the first test levels we built was the inspiration."
The imposing ediface in the center of the island is a Forerunner structure of typically inscrutable purpose. It does, however, make a perfect natural fortress. Easy to defend; difficult to attack.
The sheer scale of this location means that fast troop movement requires vehicles.A lone foot soldier presents a tempting target for snipers and will have a long hike if he's carrying a flag or a bomb.
You can use rapid teleporter activity to soften up defenders before your team makes a concerted assault on the flag position. Players also should be careful— the deep water around the beach has made many a zoomed-in strafer take a sudden and unexpected swim...
This section goes over the map Turf.
Map Type: Outdoor, Asymmetrical
"Once a center of commerce and community, the center of Old Mombasa is scarred by the hulk of a fallen Scarab-"
Rock and Ruin
In the early stages of the Covenant assault on Earth, the casualties were appalling, but they were not all human. A Scarab, crippled and downed in the center of Old Mombasa by tenacious Marines, has become a focal point for conflict in the aftermath as human forces try to secure their prize.
The surrounding streets and evacuated buildings make this a dangerous warren, with potential assassins lurking in every shadow and around every corner. Dusty storefronts conceal maze-like interiors, and narrow walkway above street level make this shadowy part of town a sniper's haven.
Shadow and Flame
Turf's environments are at once familiar and startling. Given the extra time, resources, and experience gained from Halo 2, the artists were in some ways able to make this look better than some of the single-player moments from the sequel. "The original Old Mombasa had to deal with a lot of men" issues. This time around I was able to add textures, do cool things with the brighter lighting, and add details like mud splashed onto buildings by rain," says artist Frank Capezzuto. Although it was designed primarily with Territories and CTF in mind, Turf's wildly varying situations— open streets, large buildings, narrow passageways — mean that it's surprisingly flexible. In spite of its size and complexity, the level even works well as a cat-and-mouse, one-on-one map.
The level's designer, Tyson Green, had immediacy foremost in his mind when designing Turf. "I wanted to build a level where team members could quickly refer to locations that everyone would recognize— warehouse, Scarab, street— and that they would get it even if their team members were strangers. I thought it would be cool to revisit Old Mombasa. It just seemed like a good place for a multiplayer battle."
If you're playing Territories, the tight corners mean that shotgun camping can be incredibly effective. Another technique that works in all objective game modes is the auto-bomb. Basically, a driver risks everything by barging through the warehouse doors and blowing up his 'Hog, hopefully taking out — or at least confusing— the defenders.
This section goes over the map Warlock.
Map Type: Indoor, Symmetrical
"This ancient ruin lies forlorn and forgotten-i its purpose lost to the ages- Be it temple or prison-. Warlock may be another key to the mystery of the Forerunners-"
Enigma and Entropy
As glittering drops of rain fall from rapidly dispersing clouds, sunlight-drenched Warlock hides its original purpose in the moss and ruin of unknowable age. Both Covenant and human troops have passed through here, but an unmistakable sense of foreboding soon drives both from its grim and questionable shelter.
Evolution in Action
If you look very carefully, you'll see that the bones of this map are actually almost identical to those of the Wizard map in Halo: Combat Evolved. Much of the map layout remains identical, with a few tweaks and additions to suit the features of Halo 2. Wizard originally was created by Chris Carney, but for this revisit, Max Hoberman was the designer, adding grav lifts, tweaking locations, and adjusting the layout in subtle but important ways.
On the reasoning for revisiting Wizard, Max explains, "Wizard shares an otherwise unique quality with Foundation; it's a four-way symmetrical map. This means that it will support four teams playing objective games like CTF. These are a lot of fun on Foundation, and I thought they might also be interesting on Wizard."
The intricate art in the level is largely the work of new environment artist Vic DeLeon, who worked hard with the textures and lighting, inspired by the original shapes of Wizard. "Looking at the circular design of the map, I was immediately reminded of a cathedral. That's why you see these buttresses and arches," says DeLeon. "I wanted to show another example of more ancient Forerunner architecture and to show a turning point in their architectural tastes — and you can see that as more traditional Forerunner angles start appearing near the top of the structure."
If you're playing Oddball, try to get the ball near the teleporters, then use them to evade your opponents. Look for active camo in the center room, and remember to throw the flag up to your friends.
This section goes over the map Elongation.
Map Type: Indoor, Symmetrical
"A human freighter cruises in high Earth orbit-, blissfully unaware of the explosive confrontation taking place on the far side of the planet."
Hanging almost delicately above the sapphire serenity of Earth, this spacehome cargo cruiser shuttles materiel and supplies to the military and civilian installations encircling the globe. Conveyors move heavy packing crates along its central spine for delivery and distribution. The constant movement and claustrophobic confines make this the last place you'd ever want to be in a firefight.
You don't have to scratch too far beneath the surface to find the foundation of Elongation — it's a reworked version of the original Halo map Longest. Designer Tyson Green tailored it for its 2005 debut. "We removed all the little pits— traps, really— and cut out some of the places where you'd get caught up in the first game," he says. "We wanted to make it faster and more streamlined."
The long, completely symmetrical map has some color cues and visual cues, like a burning bulkhead, to help players know instinctively at which end of the ship they are. This is vital for its intended game types: fast CTF and two-on-two objective games.
Elongation artist Dave Dunn adds, "Yeah, we also wanted to give it purpose. Longest was just a room — it made no sense. We wanted Elongation to feel like a real place with a real purpose."
Dave also was eager to revisit the types of environments found on the Space Station seen in the first level of Halo 2. "This time I got the chance to add cool little details, like control panels, working lights... the types of things you'd find in a real, working space station."
During the first few seconds before the packing crates have made their way onto the conveyor belts, a team can make fast, unhindered progress. A smart team will arm themselves with a Brute Shot— a surprisingly effective weapon in the narrow spaces of this map.
This section goes over the map Containment.
Map Type: Outdoor, Symmetrical
"Part fortress, part laboratory, the Flood Quarantine zone is a prison within a prison. This frozen swathe of tundra lies lifeless and barren, for now..."
Fear and Freezing
Ancient Forerunner security barriers create a biological airlock— separating this dead and forgotten place from the rest of Halo. The massive gate mechanisms still function, and like metal sentinels they watch over a landscape scoured in millennia past by Flood infection.
Containment is an enormous level, dwarfing some of the other maps in Halo 2. Designer Steve Cotton explains: "We built the map to promote these interesting vehicle-combat situations. As a matter of fact, we can have twelve players in vehicles at once."
Programmer Jason Major was at hand to ensure that performance was up to par on this colossal environment and that new features — like the enormous moving gates or the new explosive fusion cores— all performed the way they should.
Artist Paul Russel wanted to revisit a place from Halo 2."\ thought that Sentinel Wall would be a great place to set a multiplayer level. We made it covered in a thin layer of snow, all the buildings rusting away and past their prime. In short, the worst ski resort ever!"
Adding to the atmosphere of Containment is one of the eeriest soundscapes in the game, where howling winds join in a chorus of creaking machinery and tortured metal.
This is one of the largest environments you will encounter — an enormous valley with a natural fault running between the two gated fortresses. Its original purpose was a failsafe airlock between the Flood and the rest of Halo.
The icy terrain can be traversed on foot, but a wide range of vehicles have been deployed in this location. Their use and mastery will be key to securing any objective in this frigid and hostile place.
Control the tanks. Otherwise, use the perimeters where you're somewhat protected from turret and sniper fire. Also keep an eye on the cores; they feature explosions four times larger than any other in the game. Eliminate them or use them as traps.
This section goes over the map Terminal.
Map Type: Outdoor, Asymmetrical
"This once-immaculate uptown neighborhood of New Mombasa is now a terrifying scene of carnage and chaos as an out-of-control MagLev hurtles through the city at insane speeds-"
Terminal was once a place where the leisure classes gathered, enjoy lunch, shopped, and met friends. Those halcyon days are now just memory and while this sector of New Mombasa remains unscarred by explosion or burning plasma, it is still filled with danger.
The infrastructure controlling the city's high-speed MagLev commuter system has been badly damaged by Covenant forces. The trains now hurdle erratically through the complex transit system, and the once-admirable transit trains are now unpredictable missiles.
Terminal's designers, Chris Carney and Jaime Griesemer, built it to be a flexible asymmetrical arena, hosting everything from big team CTF games multi-team Territories battles. Carney points out that, in fact, only one game type doesn't work very well. "I built Terminal very asymmetrically, and since the defending team spawns in a kind of hive, multi-flag CTF games would be pretty lopsided."
That "hive" is a platform raised high above the flag base, and defenders can pour out of its portals with alarming speed, catching would-be flag stealers by surprise. The map also is loaded with vehicles, from hulking Wraiths to agile Ghosts— all of which can be caught in the path of the speeding MagLev. The tracks do have to be crossed from time to time, either to make a rapid assault on a base or to grab the all-important Energy Sword.
Artist Michael Zak was keen to build Terminal economically. "This was a great chance to use some of the assets we created for New Mombasa but never got the space or time to use. That means cool textures, geometry, and even lighting effects that we wanted to squeeze into Halo 2. Now we finally can."
It's vital to try and stop the Wraith as soon as possible, since its arcing Plasma Mortars can do significant damage from almost anywhere.
This section goes over the map Backwash.
Map Type: Outdoor, Symmetrical
"Attended to by automated systemsn this Forerunner structure plays host to a violent but mist-shrouded conflict."
Alive with Death
Veiled in mist and alive with the chattering of unseen fauna, Backwash is a sodden valley in a seemingly boundless swamp. Forerunner technology, illuminated by eerie light, still hums with life. Shapes move in the dense fog and in the midst of this dank heat, it's hard to tell friend from foe.
Hills and hummocks make the boggy terrain treacherous and difficult to navigate. Marksmen can stand unnoticed and unchallenged in the banks of fog or take shelter in the confines of Forerunner installations surrounding the mire.
Though set firmly on Delta Halo, Backwash is reminiscent of the swamp level, 343 Guilty Spark, from the original Halo. If you look around you can find some fauna moving among the flora— fireflies, as a matter of fact. And the ambient sounds of animals originally were recorded for Halo: Combat Evolved, giving Backwash's marshy environment one of the most unique soundscapes in the multiplayer game.
The towering center structure soars above the trees, but Rob Stokes suggests that's a mixed blessing. "Some people are drawn to the structure; others avoid it like the plague since it can be something of a trap." Inside the structure, grav lifts propel players from the basement to the main floor- but often into, rather than away from, danger.
Either way, you'll find that the central platform gives the best vantage point on the map, apart from the fallen tree that's usually the location for the map's lone Energy Sword. Energy weapons look particularly impressive against the swirling fog, and artist Justin Hayward notes, "We actually started with 343 Guilty Spark, but he looked too much like a plasma grenade from a distance, so we swapped him for the redder Penitent Tangent."
Find the Carbine or the Battle Rifle. In this kind of short-distance map, with so many high points to take advantage of, these medium-range weapons work well for either Slayer- or objective-based games. And don't forget: there are lots of hiding places under trees and in the root systems where you can surprise unsuspecting players.
This section goes over the map Sanctuary.
Map Type: Outdoor, Symmetrical
"More ancient than even the Halo itself, these crumbling structures may have been moved, brick by brick, from a Forerunner homeworld..."
Zen and Conflict
As a bright alien star illuminates these temple grounds, its peaceful lawns and elegant structures present a perfect picture against a backdrop of beautiful waterfalls and aqueducts.
The walled grotto that defines the center point of this habitat would be a quiet and solitary place for meditation were it not for the contrasting cor currently afflicting the immediate surroundings.
Another design by Steve Cotton, this level was always intended to reflect elements found in the Delta Temple area of Halo 2. "It's similar," says Steve "but it's set in a different area. I talked with [artist] Eddie Smith about giving it a real purpose, and we settled on the theme of water and aqueducts."
If you stop for a moment to look around, you'll see graceful, even majestic, structures pouring water into the still-functioning parts of the structure. Michael Wu was the environment artist responsible for crafting the look and feel of Sanctuary, and as he points out, he did more than reuse Delta Temple art. "We crunched really hard on Delta Temple while making [Halo 2], and in fact, we had to scale it back. This was a chance to use assets and ideas that we simply didn't have the opportunity to use in Halo 2."
The map was designed to be perfectly symmetrical and used for smaller, team-based objective games like CTF and Assault, but its size and layout also make it a perfect spot for Slayer matches and slightly more frenetic types like Territories and Oddball. The tunnels at the sides and the open areas in front of the bases make for frantic firefights and nerve-wracking chases.
In CTF games, rush forward instead of hanging back on defense; the gap between being killed near their base and respawning at yours becomes useful rather than annoying. Also, have a sniper soften up a base while you charge it. Cover fire can force defenders into awkward positions, leaving them vulnerable to grenades.
This section goes over the map Gemini.
Map Type: Indoor, Asymmetrical
"The grandeur of the Covenant cityworld, High Charity, is a vista for the pious from this palatial place of meditation."
The restful, contemplative space towering above the lights of High Charity is meant as a refuge for thought and meditation by senior prelates in the Prophet hierarchy. In its silent halls they can seek the solace of spirituality while contemplating the mysteries of the Forerunners.
An ironic location, perhaps, for the fury of battle and the clash of weapons, but in these times of immense upheaval, no place is safe from the ravages and turbulence of war.
An Old Friend
Sharp-eyed Bungie aficionados may recognize this map, although it been gloriously re-imagined. This is in fact a (very) substantial reworking of Duality— a Marathon map found in the Marathon Infinity pack. Long forgotten by many, its basic layout is the basis for this much larger, more complex space.
Designer Tyson Green explains the use of the layout: "We wanted this to be a much more open map than, say. Midship or even something like Turf. Although it feels closed in, it's actually a great map for snipers and mid-range weapons like the Carbine."
The art draws, for obvious reasons, from locations explored by the Master Chief in the High Charity level of Halo 2. The surprisingly large central complex is dominated by an enormous tree. Artist Tom Doyle reveals more: "The Duality map from Marathon actually had a pond in the center, but we went with something more suitable for the Prophets— a tree, symbolizing life, but taken from some unknown Forerunner place. Perhaps a Halo, perhaps somewhere else..."
Instead of sniping from the upper balcony (accessed via the teleport), you can deplete shields with the Plasma Pistol while a teammate runs around on foot finishing off the enemy. You are, of course, fairly vulnerable to grenades and melee attacks to the back of the head up there.
This section goes over everyone who made maps in this map pack.
This section goes over the important legal information.
This section goes over who to call if you need support.
This page goes over how to play Halo 2.