Sacred Icon

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Sacred Icon redirects here. For the Forerunner artifact, see Activation Index. For the achievement, see Sacred Icon (achievement).




Quarantine Zone

Sacred Icon
H2A SacredIcon Loadscreen.png


Halo 2 (Anniversary)

Map file name (?):



Thel 'Vadamee


November 3, 2552


Sentinel Wall, Installation 05


Lower the Containment Shield, then escape the Flood-infested wall and rendezvous with Covenant allies in the encampment.

Par Time:

00:15:00 (Master Chief Collection)

Par Score:

7,000 (Master Chief Collection)


Halopedia has a walkthrough guide for this level; see Sacred Icon/Walkthrough.

Succeed where others have failed. Lower the shield protecting the Sacred Icon.

Sacred Icon is the tenth campaign level of Halo 2. As Arbiter Thel 'Vadamee, the player makes their way through a wall filled with Sentinels and Flood, ending in an open-air Sangheili encampment. The player must defend it successfully from the Flood onslaught before the next level Quarantine Zone starts. This is the first and only level where Kig-Yar are encountered as allies. This is also one of three levels with human enemies ever in the whole series.


{Cutscene} {Anniversary Cutscene}

Fade in on the interior of a Covenant structure.

Sanctum of the Hierarchs, Covenant Holy City, High Charity

Panning down, in a large hallway with rows of Sangheili Honor Guardsmen. The Arbiter, Thel 'Vadamee, walks through.

'Vadamee watches as the Jiralhanae take Honor Guard equipment from the Sangheili guards. Some Jiralhanae fight each other for choice parts. As 'Vadamee ascends the stairs leading to the Prophet's Inner Sanctum, a pair of former Honor Guardsmen Sangheili pass by him, without their helmets and energy staves. 'Vadamee walks through a large doorway, past the new Jiralhanae Honor Guardsmen (one of whom snarls at him in the Anniversary) to where the Prophets of Truth and Mercy speak with Rtas 'Vadumee and two of his Special Operations Sangheili.

The Jiralhanae strip the Sangheili of their role as Honor Guards for themselves as the Arbiter goes before the High Prophets.
  • Rtas 'Vadumee: "This is unprecedented... Unacceptable."
  • Rtas 'Vadumee: "His murderer was within our grasp. If you had not withdrawn our Phantoms-"
  • Prophet of Truth: (slightly indignantly) "Are you questioning my decision?"
  • Rtas 'Vadumee: "No, Holy One! I only wish to express my concern that the Brutes-"

The Prophet of Truth holds up a hand for silence.

  • Prophet of Truth: "Re-commissioning the guard was a radical step. But recent events have made it abundantly clear that the Elites can no longer guarantee our safety."
  • Rtas 'Vadumee: "I shall relay your... decision, to the Council."

Rtas 'Vadumee and his Sangheili leave. He nods to 'Vadamee, who returns the nod. The Prophet of Truth speaks to 'Vadamee.

  • Prophet of Truth: "Politics (small sigh)... How tiresome. Do you know, Arbiter, the Elites have threatened to resign? To quit the High Council? Because of this... exchange of hats?"
  • Thel 'Vadamee: "We have always been your protectors."
  • Prophet of Truth: "These are trying times, for all of us."
  • Prophet of Truth: "Putting aside our sorrow, we renewed our faith in the prophecy that other rings would be found. And see how our faith has been rewarded."

They turn to a large view screen of Installation 05.

  • Prophet of Mercy: "Halo! Its divine wind will rush through the stars, propelling all who are worthy along the path to salvation."
  • Prophet of Truth: "But how to start this process? For ages, we searched for one who might unlock the secrets of the ring. An Oracle. And with your help, we found it."

They turn toward 343 Guilty Spark, who seems to have been suspended in a gravity beam.

  • Prophet of Mercy: "With appropriate humility, we plied the Oracle with questions. And it, with clarity and grace, has shown us... the key."

Mercy triggers a hologram of the Activation index.

  • Prophet of Truth: "You will journey to the surface of the ring, and retrieve this Sacred Icon. With it, we shall fulfill our promise."
  • Prophet of Mercy: "Salvation for all!"
  • Prophet of Truth: "And begin the Great Journey."
Truth and Mercy task the Arbiter with the recovery of the Sacred Icon after conversing with the "Oracle".

Fade to black, fade in on Installation 05. A Phantom flies toward the surface. Cuts to Phantom cockpit: Tartarus approaches from behind the Jiralhanae pilot.

  • Tartarus: "Once the shield is down, we will head straight to the Library. I do not wish to keep the Hierarchs waiting."

Focus on 'Vadamee, zoom in as he speaks.

  • Thel 'Vadamee: "The human that killed the Prophet of Regret... Who was it?"
  • Tartarus: "Who do you think?"
  • Thel 'Vadamee: (surprised) "The Demon is here!?"

Cut to Tartarus.

  • Tartarus: (affirmative snort) "Why?"

Cut to 'Vadamee, who stands next to a Jiralhanae.

  • Tartarus (COM): '"Looking for a little payback?"

'Vadamee draws a carbine and readies it.

  • Thel 'Vadamee: "Retrieving the Icon is my only concern."
  • Tartarus (COM): (skeptical laugh) "Of course."

Cut to exterior panoramic view of Delta Halo's Library, with the Sentinel Wall in the foreground. The Phantom flies towards the Sentinel Wall and stops over a landing platform. A battle has been fought here recently, as evidenced by Aggressor Sentinel wreckage and Covenant bodies and blood on the ground.

A Sentinel Enforcer closes in on Thel 'Vadamee at the Library's outer perimeter.

'Vadamee drops from the Phantom, which then flies off. Behind 'Vadamee, an Enforcer rises up and slowly advances. 'Vadamee whirls around and fires three shots (seven in the Anniversary) from his Carbine, to little effect. Suddenly, the Enforcer is hit by a sustained burst of plasma fire and loses its right-back leg. The Phantom flies by, and the Enforcer chases after it.

  • Tartarus (COM): "Lower the shield, Arbiter! I'll pick you up when you're finished."


Uncomfortable Silence[edit]

In the first room, there are some Constructors repairing an entrance. If 'Vadamee destroys one, some Aggressor Sentinels will appear (if on Legendary difficulty, the Sentinels will appear automatically) and will only stop spawning if 'Vadamee destroys the Sentinel launchers that create them. He meets a frightened Unggoy Major, who recovers upon seeing the Arbiter

After 'Vadamee jumps into the passageways moving downward, and the first room, he meets another Unggoy.

After fighting his way through a corridor lined with Sentinel launchers and the dead bodies of Covenant troops, including Jiralhanae, 'Vadamee drops down a piston into a more open room. He finds a group of Unggoy and Kig-Yar fighting Sentinels. After he defeats the Sentinels and cuts off any more from entering, one of the Unggoy speak to him.

  • Unggoy #1: "Arbiter... our savior!" (pause) "Stupid Jackal, say thank you!"

If 'Vadamee stares at the Unggoy long enough, or just waits around:

  • Unggoy #1: "If hungry, eat Jackal!"

'Vadamee moves across a bridge to the next room. A constant stream of Constructors can be seen below the bridge passing through a conduit.

  • Tartarus (COM): "You're getting close to one of the shield generators. Many of my Brutes have fallen attempting to take it down. Let's see if you fare better."

'Vadamee finds another piston and enters the tunnel, sending him downwards. An terrified Unggoy runs toward him.

Several Sentinel launchers open up, producing more Sentinels.

  • Unggoy #2: "Ahh, more bad things! Arbiter! Protect, protect!"

'Vadamee reaches another piston, and drops down to the shield generator.

The chamber with the power source controls.
  • Tartarus (COM): "You've reached the power source, Arbiter."

An Enforcer descends from above.

  • Tartarus (COM): "It is useless to attack the Enforcer at the front, especially when its shields are up. Stay in the shadows, wait until it loses interest, then strike the beast when its back is turned."

'Vadamee destroys the Enforcer.

  • Tartarus (COM): "You've reached the power source. Overload the locks holding it in place."

After 'Vadamee overloads (or pushes them to save ammo) the first three plug locks

  • Tartarus (COM): "One more, Arbiter."

Note: On higher difficulties, the dormant Sentinel Launchers in the room will activate and start spawning Sentinels.

'Vadamee overloads the last one.

  • Tartarus (COM): "Release the power source. Now, find a way to remove it from its cradle."

'Vadamee activates the holo-panel. The Sentinel Launchers in the room all explode. The platform drops down and starts moving as the door in front of him opens.

Buyer's Remorse[edit]

Above, the bright-green shield surrounding the Library is fading away, followed by Tartarus's Phantom flying lower towards the other side of the wall.

  • Tartarus (COM): "Our path to the Library's clear. I'll pick you up on the ledge ahead."

The door of the approaching wall opens to another Enforcer, which begins to fire on the Phantom.

  • Tartarus (COM): (growls) "Blasted machines! Make your own way through the wall, Arbiter!"

The Phantom retreats, followed by an attack by Aggressor Sentinels and a break-out of Flood combat forms.

Marines fighting the Flood in the Sentinel wall.

Eventually clearing the area of hostiles, 'Vadamee jumps through the wide-opened door that several Sentinels used to enter the area. Fighting his way through Flood forms and Sentinels, 'Vadamee reaches a piston at the other end. After clearing another corridor of Flood and surviving an ambush of Pod infectors, he reaches another piston.

As 'Vadamee proceeds through the hallway below, his COM link picks up a UNSC transmission.

'Vadamee looks across a chasm to see a squad of Marines surrounded by Flood. The parasites usually overwhelm and kill the outnumbered Marines. If any Marines do survive, they will fire upon 'Vadamee and any Sentinels present. Fighting his way through twisting hallways full of Flood combat forms, with occasional Sentinels and carrier forms impeding his progress, 'Vadamee reaches another piston. After traversing an open-air balcony full of battling Flood and Sentinels including an Enforcer, 'Vadamee activates yet another piston which takes him still deeper into the Wall.

'Vadamee fights his way through an area heavily saturated with Flood spores. Eventually he picks up another human transmission.

  • Stacker (COM): "Negative, ma'am! They are not Covenant!"
  • Banks (COM): "Cover that doorway!"

'Vadamee fights through another group of Flood and Sentinels before reaching another piston. He drops down a long tunnel which deposits him on a flat platform akin to the one he initially landed on. Nearby a Covenant Phantom is forced away by ground fire from several combat forms, leaving 'Vadamee to deal with them. He drops down another long tunnel and reaches the bottom of the wall.

100,000 Years War[edit]

One of the Sentinel manufacturing facilities explode.

As soon as the doorway opens, an airborne Sentinel manufacturing facility can be seen in the distance as it is shot down by Wraith mortars and crashes into the Quarantine Zone.

'Vadamee proceeds through the snow. Covenant drop pods land across the canyon. Special Operations Sangheili exit from them.

  • Special Operations Sangheili #1: "Forerunners be praised, the Arbiter!"

With the assistance from fellow Sangheili, 'Vadamee defeats several waves of Flood.

  • Special Operations Sangheili #1: "This Quarantine Zone has been compromised, we must do what we can against the Flood. Our Commander has landed further in, let us join him."

'Vadamee crosses a bridge and through a tunnel, engaging more Flood forms and meets the Special Operations Commander, Rtas 'Vadumee.

  • Rtas 'Vadumee: "Arbiter!? What are you doing here!?"

Rtas 'Vadumee is interrupted by screeches of the Flood.

  • Special Operations Sangheili #2: "The Flood is upon us!"
  • Rtas 'Vadumee: "We must hold this camp until reinforcements arrive."

After the fight has gone on for a while, a Phantom descends from above, firing on any remaining Flood in the area. Fade to white.

Level ends.



  • Invincibility can be obtained via a glitch in the part where players fall down one of the tubes to see the Phantom for the first time.
  • In both times where Marines are heard combating the Flood, there are actually Marines fighting the Flood near the Arbiter. However, once the player approaches their locations, the Marines will drop dead. It is possible, with some practice and the Sputnik Skull, to grenade jump across the chasm and land next to the Marines. They will show red on the reticule and will attack the player even when the player does not attack them.
  • The dead Marines and Brutes in this level blink their eyes from time to time.
  • The Jackals' unlimited Plasma Pistols glitch can be done on this level.
  • During the fight with the first Enforcer, if the player blows off all its attacking parts, the Enforcer will use its Invisible Sentinel beam.
  • If the player proceeds to power-up all Absorbers without destroying the Enforcer, it (with all Sentinel Launchers and Sentinels) will self-destruct just before the door starts to open.
  • When the player reaches the section where the Flood is encountered, any surviving Jackal (if still alive) may drop its shield and its weapon, though this is a very rare occurrence. (This glitch is made easier if the Jackal is holding a Plasma rifle).
  • The player can make a Flood form freeze by jumping over it repeatedly.
  • The Charging Needler glitch can be performed on this level.
  • Sometimes the first Grunt in the level is invisible.
  • The first Grunt encountered can be turned invincible when he falls down the tube. It only works with this one Grunt.
  • In the beginning of the level, a strange weapon can be seen when the Phantom attacks the Enforcer. It appears to be a Battle and Plasma Rifle fused together.
  • Sometimes if the player gives a Jackal a carbine and reach the area where the Enforcer and Sentinel Majors are attacking the Flood, their carbine will become invisible.
  • Sometimes if you still have a surviving Grunt riding the gondola with you before the encounter with the Flood, when the chapter Buyers Remorse shows up on the screen, there is a chance (Bigger chance if holding Plasma rifle) that the Grunt's weapon will be deleted, therefore disarming the Grunt.
  • There's a glitch that makes a fellow Elite weaponless. When you first get outside after fighting through endless flood in the facility and some Elites are dropped in to help you, you can give one of them an M6C Magnum pistol and it will disappear.
  • This level contains several instances of the Thunderstorm skull not working properly. Even with the skull activated, several Grunt allies throughout the level can still appear as Majors instead of Ultras. Another example of this phenomenon is the first group of Brutes in the level Uprising.
  • If you melee a dead marine combat form in the hip, it will spin around, whereas if you melee it anywhere else, it will not move.


An upcoming outdoor section being visible in Halo 2: Anniversary.
  • At times the player may initially find two Grunts and one Jackal instead of two Jackals and one Grunt, and on some occasions two Jackals and three Grunts. However, this is quite rare.
  • Occasionally when sliding down the pistons alongside a Grunt, it may die on impact.
  • When the Grunt is sliding down the first piston, it will sometimes stop just before falling onto another slide and refuse to follow the player any further. This can be avoided by letting the Grunt jump through first and pushing him down when the player jumps.
  • As the player takes the gondola under the containment shield being deactivated, a future section of the wall can be seen on the right. Where as the section is darkened in Halo 2 due to limitations of draw distance, it can be seen in Halo 2: Anniversary.
  • This is the first level to have Flood Infected Marines, Sentinel Majors, and Enforcers. It is also the first where the player can use Human Weapons while playing as the Arbiter.
  • Because Sacred Icon is the first part of a two-part level, the player's weapons will carry over to Quarantine Zone, unless one of the weapons is a Rocket Launcher. If the player completes Sacred Icon with a Rocket Launcher, they will start Quarantine Zone with a Covenant Carbine and an Energy Sword.


  • The Arbiter fires three rounds at the Enforcer in the opening cutscene, yet his weapon is fully loaded when gameplay starts. There is no time for him to have reloaded offscreen.
  • Snow falls through the last piston tunnel despite it being enclosed.
  • One of four Elites who arrives by orbital insertion pod does not have a functioning energy shield.
  • Standard Okarda'phaa-pattern plasma rifles are seen next to dead Brutes in this level, which they do not wield when encountered later in the game, using the Brute variant instead.
  • In Halo 2: Anniversary, the opening cutscene shows the Phantom flying to the Sentinel wall backwards in one shot.
  • The opening cutscene depicts the snow surrounding the Library as very vibrant. When gameplay begins the exterior is dark despite the platform the level begins on being open to the elements.
  • In Halo 2: Anniversary, the Sentinel manufacturing facility that the player sees being shot down by plasma mortars appears to explode on its own, as no mortars can be seen. This is likely because the plasma mortars depicted in the original game arc well beneath the factory, making the effect rather unconvincing.


  • There's a Battle Rifle located in the weapons cache at the exit of the destroyed Sentinel Constructor Factory with an ammunition level surpassing the limit of '108' that ranges as far as '236' bullets.
  • There's a Carbine that can hold '96' rounds of ammo instead of the '72' limit.
  • The holo-panel used to deactivate the containment shield displays what appears to be a hand with six digits (2 index fingers, 2 middle fingers and 2 thumbs). In Halo 4, the Ur-Didact is depicted having a similar hand.
  • When out on one of the balconies, on which Enforcers and Flood are in combat off on the far corner of the adjacent structure, there is a door that is clearly discolored to a bright green. Bungie admitted to be referencing one of their favorite restaurants near their developing studios, the name of which being "The Green Door."[citation needed]
  • In the beginning of the level, the Arbiter can see the lakes where John-117 killed the High Prophet of Regret, just like how John can see the Sentinel Wall in the distance on Delta Halo and Regret. In addition, High Charity appears to be very close to Halo.
  • In the beginning of the level, there are patches of Flood blood near the Grunt which indicates the Flood has made it far enough to the point of escaping.
  • Originally, Bungie had planned for there to be an additional level after Sacred Icon called "Forerunner Tank." It was cut, however, due to deadlines.[1]
  • The weapon that fires from the Phantom at the beginning of the level is a cross between the Battle Rifle and Okarda'phaa-pattern plasma rifle hybrid.
  • In the first part of this level, all Vostu-pattern carbines that are laying on the floor hold extra rounds.
  • There is a small weapon cache hidden in the second room. There is a dead Brute, some plasma grenades and a Carbine that has over 25 extra rounds.
  • This is the first of two levels in the Halo trilogy where the player can wield the blue Sentinel Beam.
  • There is speculation on why the Arbiter is able to use the Forerunner systems on this and other levels. The Forerunners made it to where no one but themselves and the Humans would be able to use the systems on the Installations that they created, but it is shown that the Arbiter can use them as well. This is likely an oversight made by Bungie and the Halo creators. Examples of this is when the Arbiter takes down the Containment shield on the Sacred Icon and when Rtas 'Vadumee activates the Gondola on the Quarantine Zone. It's possible that Forerunners allowed minor systems to be used by any species, like when the Covenant lock a Forerunner door in The Silent Cartographer level, but made sure only Reclaimers could do major things such as activating a Halo or retrieving the Index.
  • All the dead Brutes in the level are lying in a pool of blue (Grunt) blood. Same with Jackals that are dead before the player arrives. It is possible that the Grunt's that the blood originated from were swept away or devoured by the Flood.
  • This is the only level in the Halo Trilogy that features pistons.
  • When observing the Sentinel manufacturing facility's destruction, it can be noted that the projectiles hitting the structure are actually Zurdo-pattern Wraith Plasma Mortar shots. In addition, the shots never actually come in contact with the structure when it begins to explode and plummet to the installation's surface.
  • During the development of Halo 2, the level was known by the working title "Sentinel Headquarters".[2]
  • This is the only level in the entire game where Jackals appear as allies.

Easter eggs[edit]

  • The Mythic Skull can be found on this level.
  • Throughout the level the player can find weapons containing more rounds than their capacities, including Battle Rifles, Pistols and Type-33 needlers .
  • The eighth terminal is a Covenant terminal in the room with the final piston of the level. The room is easily identified by the fact that it is completely devoid of combat; the only Flood in the room are dead. The terminal is behind a wall on the right side of the room.


Halo 2[edit]

Halo 2: Anniversary[edit]


  1. ^ Halo 3 Essentials, Disc 2, Halo 2 Audio Commentary.
  2. ^ YouTube: The Making of Halo 2 (07:15)
Preceded by
Halo 2 Campaign Missions
Sacred Icon
Succeeded by
Quarantine Zone