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Season 9 (Halo Wars 2)

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Season 8


The Yappening

Season 9
HW2 Season 9 Icon.png

Start date:

January 16, 2018

End date:

March 29, 2018

Includes content for:

Halo Wars 2


Season 9 was the ninth season of Halo Wars 2 to launch, beginning on January 16, 2018. The season followed Season 8 and was succeeded by The Yappening in-game event on March 29, 2018. The season's emblem is represented by an Infused Scarab. The season's accompanying balance patch mostly saw balance changes for the new Pavium and Voridus leaders, among other tweaks.

Season 9 Title Updates[edit]

The launch of Season 9 saw the launch of two accompanying Title Updates for Halo Wars 2.

January 16 patch

January 16 patch

Halo Wars 2 Patch Notes - January 16, 2018[1]

Gameplay Fixes

  • Fixed a Leader Power exploit that resulted in earning Leader Points at a faster rate.
  • Fixed an issue which allowed players to control opposing team units.
  • Returned the cost increase of Colony’s Living Barrier leader power back to 0/0. (*this undoes the temporary change that was made to mitigate the Living Barrier exploit, which is now properly fixed)

Balance changes


Infusion damage and duration reduced

Infusion Damage
  • Damage per second reduced by 8%
Infusion Duration

All Infusion Duration reduced by -11% except for:

  • Infusion Mine I reduced -22%
  • Infusion Mine II reduced -18%
  • Infused Engineer reduced -10%
  • Pool - Medium reduced -20%
  • Pool - Large reduced -20%
  • Pool - Extra Large reduced -20%
  • Infusion Wake I reduced -25%
  • Infusion Wake II reduced -20%
  • Infusion Wake III reduced -15%
Infusion Duration - Blitz

All Blitz Infusion Duration reduced by -11% except for:

  • Infusion Mine I - Blitz reduced -10%
  • Infusion Mine II - Blitz reduced -10%
Infusion Tech
  • Reverts earlier increases to Infusion Tech I/II to reflect relative strength of Infusion without further boosts.
Infusion Tech I
  • Damage Scaling reduced -4%
Infusion Tech II
  • Damage Scaling reduced -8%
Corrupted Warlord & Mortar Warlord
  • Infusion pool sizes reduced slightly and substantially reduced Infusion Trail duration. Mortar Warlord Y ability cooldown increased.
Infusion Trail Duration
  • Corruption Trail Duration reduced -30s
Mortar Warlord Ability
  • Designator Cooldown increased +10s
  • Effect duration reduced and cooldown increased to curb its overall effectiveness (especially in combination with other powers).
  • Cooldown increased +30s
  • Effect Duration reduced -17%
  • Increased cooldown to bring power more in line with its cost effectiveness and make it more difficult to chain with other powers.
  • Cooldown increased +35s
Brute Grenadier
  • Base DPS and Infusion siphoning benefits (damage mitigation, DPS bonus) increased to improve their value as a core unit.
  • Grenade DPS
  • Damage Per Second increased +14%/+11%/+9%
Infusion Siphon
  • Damage Reduction Scaling increased +20%
  • Damage Modifier increased +33%

Reduced overall cost effectiveness of Ultra Mines and increased arming time to improve player ability to avoid them.

Ultra Mine I
  • Arming Delay increased +1s
  • Reduced Arming Delay increased +0.5s
  • Supplies 200 -> 300
  • Power 200 -> 300
  • Ability Cooldown increased +15s
Ultra Mine II
  • Arming Delay increased +1s
  • Reduced Arming Delay increased +0.5s
  • Supplies 330 -> 450
  • Power 330 -> 450
  • Ability Cooldown increased +15s
Pavium’s Stand

Reduced duration and increased cost to balance cost effectiveness.

  • Supplies 300 -> 425
  • Power 300 -> 425
  • Duration reduced -20%
Lich Vanguard
  • Health and damage increased slightly to improve its effectiveness as an ultimate leader power.
  • Hit Points increased +13%
  • Damage Per Second increased +9%
Rain of Fire

Increased cooldown time and decreased damage to help bring the power in line with cost.

  • Ability Cooldown increased +20s
  • Damage Per Second reduced -5%
Mortar Warlord
  • Reduced the effectiveness of 'Y' ability Designator and splash damage.
  • Damage Reduction Scaling reduced -8%
AOE Damage
  • Damage Ratio reduced -20%
Upgraded Paint Target
  • Damage Ratio reduced -25%

Anti-Air Vehicles

Slight increases to HP and Splash damage values to improve survivability and damage versus massed air units.

  • AOE Damage Radius increased +25%/+20%
  • Hit Points increased +10%
  • AOE Damage Radius increased +13%/+14%
  • Hit Points increased +10%

Anti-Vehicle & Tier 3 Vehicles

Health and effectiveness of Anti-Vehicle units improved versus Tier 2 Vehicles. Tier 3 Vehicles improved versus Tier 2 Vehicles, AA Vehicles, and Scouts.

  • Damage versus Medium increased +19%
Tier 3 Vehicle
  • Damage versus Medium increased +20%
  • Damage versus MediumAA increased +40%
  • Damage versus MediumScout increased +20%
  • Hit Points increased +5%
  • Hit Points increased +5%
Scorpion - Cannister Shell
  • Damage Per Second increased +14%
  • AOE Radius increased +20%
Grizzly - Missile Barrage
  • Damage Per Second increased +12%
  • Core AOE Radius reduced -25%
  • Splash AOE Radius added (DPS 50%)
Wraith - Scorch Mortar
    • Damage Per Second increased +21%
Wraith - Corrupted Scorch Mortar
  • Damage Per Second increased +19%
February 8 balance patch

February 8 balance patch

Balance Update - Feb. 8, 2018

A server-side balance update was released today that includes a variety of adjustments to leaders, abilities, and units on Xbox One and Windows 10 PC.[2][3]


Core Tier 2 Air Damage Vs. Vehicle Increase

Air is meant to be an anti-vehicle option in your army but has never been as effective in the damage triangle as needed. These changes will help players choose more diverse ways of countering vehicles in various stages of the game for both Banished and UNSC armies.

As a result, air units will increase damage in the following ways:

  • Damage to scouts increased by 9%.
  • Damage to core vehicles increased by 4%.
  • Damage to Serina and Forge hero unit increased by 10%.
  • Damage to T3 heavy vehicles increased by 40%
Core T2 Vehicle Building Damage and Damage to Air Reduction

This change is to help reduce the effectiveness of Warthogs and Marauders vs buildings in mass, as well as vs. core air, to allow infantry and AA be more effective.

  • Damage to buildings reduced by 5%
  • Damage to core air reduced by 5%
  • Scouts vs. Rush Infantry Damage Increase
  • Scouts have been doing their jobs of scouting and helping deal with early infantry but have been having a tough time vs. rush infantry. These changes will improve that interaction.
  • Jackrabbits damage to rush infantry increased 11%.
  • Ghost, Skitterer, and Chopper damage to rush infantry increased by 10%.
Anti-Air Vehicles Splash Damage Decrease

A buff that was implemented last patch is being brought down a little bit as AA had become too effective vs. air. This reduction of damage for the outer most splash ring, as well as a small radius decrease, will bring these in line with what they should be.

  • Splash damage radius decreased for both AA faction vehicles.
Tier 3 Tanks Damage Increase

Tanks have struggled vs. tier 2 units for some time and haven’t really felt, well, tanky. This change will make tanks vs. all lower tier vehicles stronger and increase the damage against buildings in their core damage shots (not Y ability shots) increase.

  • Tanks vs. other tanks damage reduced by 13%.
  • Tanks vs. Scouts damage increased by 30%.
  • Tanks vs. Tier 2 vehicles damage increased by 19%.
  • Tanks vs. AA damage increased by 7%.
  • Tanks vs. building damage increased by 8%


  • Retriever Sentinel: The Retriever Sentinel was over performing for what its effective costing was, so we have made some tweaks to bring it more in line with intended design.
    • Cost Increased to 2000/2000
    • Population Cost increased to 30
    • Shield reduced by 20%
    • Gained ability to earn Veterancy
  • Health of Close Air Support increased by 20% to help keep his ultimate alive a little bit longer.
  • Enduring Salvo damage increased 5% because this ability most definitely needed some love.

Chill rates on power nodes often made it so a power node could not be taken when uncontested. This will force a player to defend them. As well, frostravens have been buffed to keep up with survivability vs. AA. Her unit drop as well has been increased to be slightly above the cost to build the units themselves.

  • Frostraven health increased by 10%.
  • Chill Rate on Power Nodes decreased by 30%.
  • Cryo Drop Cost Increased to 1690/380.
Sergeant Johnson

Johnson has been helped slightly surrounding his hero unit, colossus unit, and fixing a bug when obtaining a passive leader power.

  • Fixed Turret Damage Issue causing Turrets to do less damage when this leader power is obtained.
  • Johnson Hero Unit gains Veterancy 10% faster.
  • Decreased cost of stomp to 700 power.
  • Fixed a bug with Grenade Launcher upgrade for Flamehogs where it was not applying the correct bonus damage.
  • DPS of Flamehog increased by 5%

An army with a Forgehog mixed in is slightly more dominant than intended. To make his hero unit slightly more fair and balanced, we have reduced his heroes’ health and the aura armor mitigation. On top of this, cost changes to *leader drops have been made to better reflect what it would cost to build them plus some.

  • Forgehog health reduced by 10%
  • Forgehog Defensive Aura damage mitigation reduced by 40%
  • Grizzly Battalion Cost Increased to 3000/450.
  • Vehicle Drop Level 2 Population Cost increased to 20 to reflect changes to Warthogs.

To help make early Mega Turrets a higher risk-reward scenario, the initial costing has been increased. In addition, wraith invaders were a bit too powerful for what their roll in an army is supposed to be.

  • Mega Turret Cost increase by 100/100 at base level.
  • Wraith Invader DPS reduced by 15%
  • Pop Cost increased from 4 to 5
  • Hitpoints reduced by 10%

This cost of Devastating Host is increased because it was cheaper to drop the units than build them.

  • Devastating Host cost increased to 1950/980

Phantoms in many cases for the Arbiter were over performing so the ability to heal them has been reduced and they’ve been made a little less durable.

  • Phantom heal rate reduced by 30%.
  • Phantom health decreased by 5%.

YapYap has a tough time early game with no true anti-infantry unit. This buff will help him get through early game scenarios when rushed by infantry.

  • Methane Shell Damage (Methane Wagon Y Ability) increased by 5%.

Fury is a very damaging leader power but is rarely utilized by players due to the health drain on use. This change in intended to make Fury a more viable choice for players.

  • Fury health cost decreased by 40%

Shipmaster has fallen from top tier to bottom tier across the board over several seasons. These changes will hopefully give him some of his toolbox back to help regain his previous status.

  • Tactical Gateway cooldown reduced by 30s
  • Teleport Level 2 max distance increased by 12%
  • Atriox

Over time, Atriox has had numerous tuning adjustments that have reduced his effectiveness and usage a bit more than intended. These subtle changes are aimed at giving him a small boost to make him more viable and appealing to players.

  • Fortifications reduction to expansion bases increased by 3%
  • Eradication explosion damage increased by 5%
  • Eradication damage circles evened out for a wider spread of damage.



Hornets have been improved to reflect the splash damage buff AA has received. Changes made to improve Air vs. Vehicles will result in more players building more AA, so a slight adjustment to them was needed.

  • Hornet health increased by 8%
  • Hornet base DPS increased by 5%
  • Hornet cost reduction from 325 to 300.
  • Hornet speed increased to match Wolverines.

These changes are to slow down the build-up of a turtle game as well as making a strong Kodiak build a bit easier to counter.

  • Build time increased from 35 to 40 seconds.
  • Cost increased from 500 to 525.
  • Outer ring reduced from 22 to 20.
  • Reduced damage of largest splash damage ring from 25% to 15%.

Nightingales were healing each other a bit too quickly – this change will slow down that rate as well as make them a bit more durable with a slightly larger health pool.

  • Nightingales healing received reduced by 12%
  • Health increased by 5%.

This change will allow Snipers to deal with base infantry just a little bit faster when upgraded.

  • Stanchion rifle upgrade increased DPS by 5%

A rush to tech 2 and pushing Warthogs out has become a highly effective strategy. This change will make the rush to tech 2 a little less attractive to hopefully diversify builds and reduce the effectiveness of a Warthog dominated mid game.

  • Population cost increased from 3 to 4.

This buff is to help with the survivability of the Condor to make it feel a bit more ultimate.

  • Hitpoints increased by 5%
  • Turn Rate speed increased 17%



These units are the glass cannons of the air units, with changes to how air interacts with vehicles, these units are being made more accessible and receiving a slight health buff to help them deal better vs. the increased effectiveness of added anti-air units. Health increased by 7%

  • Cost reduction from 300 to 275.

For a tier 3 unit they were underperforming compared to Kodiaks. These changes make their artillery mode a near match to how Kodiaks perform when locked down. Increase to the splash damage while in artillery mode.

  • Splash radius increased by 15%
Elite Rangers

A buff to their modifier vs. air was made to help reinforce the infantry vs. air role. Since Snipers received a buff on their upgrade and Elite Rangers require an upgrade – these units are getting a subtle buff to damage. Base DPS increase of 5%.

  • Damage modifier vs. air increased 5%.

Slight health buff to increase survivability

  • Health increased by 10%

It’s hard to be anti-vehicle when most vehicles are faster than you are. This change was made to help them be more effective in combat vs. vehicles.

  • Movement speed increased from 11 to 12

Shrouds were a bit too hard to use in front line combat on account of their slow speed and low durability. A slight movement speed and health buff will help them be more viable. Movement speed increased from 10 to 11.

  • Health increased by 10%

This unit is meant to be a very scary ultimate but has been underperforming vs. armies of units. The beam damage buff will help it incinerate armies more effectively. Hitpoints increased by 5%

  • Beam Damage increased by 15%
  • AA Shade Turret increased by 15%
  • Teleport no longer affects Enemy units because it was not intended to do so.
  • Cost of most Legendary Cards reduced by ~10% to help make units that have Y abilities on cooldown when cast more cost effective.


  1. ^ Halo Waypoint Forums, Halo Wars 2 - Patch Notes: Post 14 (January 16 patch notes) (Retrieved on Feb 28, 2021) [archive]
  2. ^ Halo Waypoint Forums, Halo Wars 2 - Patch Notes: Post 15 (February 8 patch notes) (Retrieved on Feb 28, 2021) [archive]
  3. ^ Halo Waypoint Forums, February Balance Update (2/8/18): (February 8 patch notes) (Retrieved on Feb 28, 2021) [archive]