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This article is about the Spartan Ops chapter. For the SPARTAN-IV fireteam, see Fireteam Switchback.


Search and Destroy


Invasion (cinematic)

SO EP6 CH5 Switchback.png


Halo 4


Fireteam Crimson




"Harvester," Requiem



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Covenant employing a Harvester in their search for a mysterious artifact. Spartans are deployed to shut down its operations.

Switchback is the fifth chapter of Spartan Ops' sixth episode, Scattered.[1]


Responding to Fireteam Switchback's distress call, Fireteam Crimson arrives at the dig site where the Covenant have their Harvester stationed. They defeat the Promethean forces outside and search for any sign of Switchback. They find four IFF tags, but no sign of the team itself. Palmer orders Crimson to finish what Switchback started.

After provoking the Covenant into opening the Harvester's door, Crimson gets inside and kills the Covenant crew. They then wreck the control center, putting the Harvester out of commission. Some more Prometheans teleport in, but are defeated. Crimson leaves the Harvester and, after a final group of Prometheans is dealt with, Murphy's Phantom arrives to pick them up. Though the mission is a success, the fate of Switchback remains unknown.


All dialogue is spoken through the COM.


Crimson’s Phantom flies over the canyon where the Harvester is located.

  • Spartan Jared Miller: “Crimson is inbound on Switchback’s position, Commander. Looks disabled, but can’t confirm.”

A wing of Broadsword fighters swoops down into the canyon and proceed to bomb the area. At the same time, Crimson’s Phantom lands.


Crimson are engaged by Promethean forces.

  • Palmer: “Miller, any luck reaching Switchback Leader?”
  • Miller: “I’ve got a lock on their IFFs. They’re near the Harvester but there’s no movement and no radio contact.”
  • Palmer: “Crimson, track those IFFs. Either bring Switchback back home, or collect the heads of the Covies responsible!”

When the first IFF tag is found:

  • Miller: “It’s a Switchback tag.”
  • Palmer: “But there’s no one here. No record. Not even a body...”

When the second IFF tag is found:

  • Miller: “Checks out. Switchback. Again, nothing.”

When the third IFF tag is found:

  • Palmer: “Ok, this is weird. Keep looking, Crimson.”

When the fourth IFF tag is found:

  • Miller: “That’s the last one, Commander.”
  • Palmer: “We have four blank IFFs and zero bodies. What am I not understanding, Miller? Crimson, keep an eye out for any other signs of Switchback, and make sure the Covenant don’t reactivate the Harvester.”

Crimson battles their way to the Harvester.

  • Miller: “The only way to disable this thing for sure is to get inside.”
  • Palmer: “Let’s invite the Covies out to play. Just need something big and explosive to get their attention.”

Once all the Prometheans are destroyed:

  • Miller: “If we blow a few of these computers, we should get their attention. Marking one.”
  • Palmer: “That’ll do. Crimson, light it up!”

Crimson destroys the target computer.

  • Miller: “Harvester’s opening. Ya got their attention all right.”
  • Palmer: “Prepare a welcoming party, Crimson.”

Covenant troops pour out of the Harvester. Crimson engages and defeats them all, then boards the Harvester.

  • Palmer: “Neutralize all targets.”

Once all Covenant inside the Harvester are cleared out:

  • Palmer: “Miller, where’s the control center?”
  • Miller: “Right over there. The Harvester is down, but it won’t take much to get it back in working order.”
  • Palmer: “Make sure it can’t be brought back to life, Crimson.”

Crimson destroys the designated targets in the control room.

  • Palmer: “Enthusiasm, Crimson. I like it. Fall out. Murphy, prep for pick up.”
  • Murphy: “You got it, Commander.”

Prometheans teleport in and engage Crimson.

  • Miller: “A few more Prometheans late to the party.”
  • Palmer: “Nothing Crimson can’t handle.”

Crimson defeats the Prometheans and move back outside, where more Prometheans are waiting.

  • Palmer: “Mop up the last of them.”

Once all the Prometheans are destroyed:

  • Miller: “Murphy, Crimson’s ready for pick up.”
  • Murphy: “On station and ready to fly.”
  • Palmer: “Crimson, get to the LZ. We’ll figure out this Switchback thing once you’re home.”

Crimson boards Murphy’s Phantom.


Crimson’s Phantom takes off.

  • Miller: “Harvester’s offline for good, Commander.”
  • Palmer: “Good to hear. Still, what the hell happened to Switchback? We’re missing something.”


Level ends.


  • A glitched crawler will spawn with the group of Prometheans near the farthest IFF tag. This is the only level that this glitch occurs on.