What Could Go Wrong?

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Not on My Watch


Fighting Retreat

What Could Go Wrong?
Awakening the Nightmare concept art used as mission artwork for the level What Could Go Wrong?


Halo Wars 2




June 4, 2559


High Charity crash site, Installation 00


  • Meet with the recon teams for further orders
  • Use a Disruption Emitter to stun Forerunner and Sentinel threats
  • Prepare the base
  • Safely escort the Scarab to High Charity
  • Protect the Scarab
  • Destroy the UNSC presence
  • Activate Lightbridge
  • Solve the final part of the Forerunner interface puzzle
  • Expand to all base plots (3)
  • Rescue the Reavers
  • Build on all turret slots near the launching bays (5)
  • Capture all power nodes (4)
  • Salvage all Covenant resources (10)

Par Time:



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What Could Go Wrong? is the fifteenth campaign level in Halo Wars 2, and the first of the Awakening the Nightmare expansion.


Cinematic Cutscene

Atriox dismisses Pavium and Voridus from a briefing. Atriox takes a look at the ruins of High Charity as they leave. Cut to Pavium looking at Voridus while they are walking down a hallway.

  • Pavium: "Do not disobey your orders again."

Voridus chuckles, and Pavium stops him angrily.

  • Pavium: "Scout the shell, salvage the ships. That is it. Atriox was clear!"
  • Voridus: "I'll look around. And if we find prizes to bring it back, how could that go wrong?"

Pavium and Voridus grab their weapons.

  • Pavium: "Voridus, listen, you fail him one more time trying to prove yourself and I will not be able to save you... and it will be both our skulls beneath his mace."

They bump forearms, and Voridus heads outside to a waiting Eklon'Dal Workshop Lich.

  • Voridus: "Relax, brother. You worry too much."

Pavium sighs as he watches Voridus leave.



Mission Briefing

  • Voridus: "Pavium, we are ready to move to High Charity. My men are impatient for glory."
  • Pavium: "Put a leash on them, Voridus! The terrain here is unsuitable for our power extractors. I am still working on a solution! And your men would do well to remember that whatever we find here belongs to Atriox."
  • Voridus: "This war has tamed you, brother! Where is your Jiralhanae lust for adventure? That relic is ripe for plunder!"
  • Pavium: "This war has taught me, Voridus. Stay your hand. Once we reach High Charity, we need to move quickly to avoid wrath of the Sentinels defending it."
  • Voridus: "Yes, yes. I am well aware of what we face here. Hurry your preparations, old one. I already have troops on the ground! Voridus, out."

Mission Summary

Join and support Voridus' assault on High Charity.

Scouting Report

Field anti-air units to combat the heavy Sentinel threat.


  • Brute Squad Leader: "This way, whelps, there's weapons to be salvaged from High Charity, and Voridus commands us to return to base for new orders."
  • Grunt 1: "Did you say High Charity? The Covenant capital-place? I heard it was haunted! Scary monsters everywhere!"
  • Grunt 2: "Whoa, man. Back off the gas."

'Ahtulai Workshop Banshees fly above them as they advance.

  • Brute Squad Leader: "Silence! Those Covenant lies do not concern me, and that means they do not concern you!"

Ahead, the squad of Banshees is engaging Aggressor Sentinels.

  • Pavium: "Voridus, there are many Sentinels amassing here near the salvage site. They may be guarding, rather than protecting something within High Charity."

Banished Spirit dropships pass above them while Banshees defeats the Sentinels.

  • Voridus: "The old stories of the parasite? Nothing but Covenant propaganda, old friend."

Approaching some resources, the Banished take them.

  • Voridus: "You handle the Sentinels near you and let me deal with the ones here. We'll have what we need in no time."


Approaching a cliff, many Sentinels and the ruins of High Charity can be seen.and a Grunt jumps.

  • Grunt 1: "Whoa, that's a lotta Sentinels!"

The Banished's air forces engage the Sentinels. One Aggressor Sentinel is seen being chased by two Banshees. The Jiralhanae smacks the Grunt to silence him.

  • Voridus: "Pavium, our air forces are engaging Sentinels near High Charity."


  • Brute Squad Leader: "Gah! What fool turned off the lightbridge?"
  • Grunt 1: "Aw, too bad. Guess someone else will have to deal with those Sentinels."
  • Brute Squad Leader: "Cowards! I shall punt you into the void! Reavers, re-activate the lightbridge!"

The Reavers leap across the chasm and activate the lightbridge. Once activated, the Banished continue to advance, but they are blocked by High Charity debris.

  • Grunt 1: "Ooh, Covenant stuff. Retro!"
  • Voridus: "Troops, I'm sending a Locust to clear the path."

A Spirit drops a Locust while a Lich and another Spirit pass above them. The Locust immediately goes to work destroying the debris.

  • Grunt 2: "We turn back?"
  • Brute Squad Leader: "You can return with salvaged goods, or on a platter as a meat for the real soldiers. Your choice."
  • Grunt 2: "Choice made! Let's blast it!"

Once the debris is destroyed, they continue ahead, and find a squad scanning Covenant supply cases.

  • Brute: "Brothers! We've found these Covenant supply cases on our way to the base."
  • Brute Squad Leader: "Then don't waste time with your scanning toys! Smash it open!"

They destroy the caches and obtain supplies.

  • Brute Squad Leader: "See how easy that was? Now come with us!"
A pair of Dovotaa Workshop Reavers firing their light spike cannons in Halo Wars 2: Awakening the Nightmare level What Could Go Wrong?.
Two Reavers on the mission.

Continuing ahead, they spot a Grunt Squad that is under attack by Aggressor Sentinels.

  • Grunt 1: "Agh! Robot things!"
  • Brute Squad Leader: "Sentinels! Reavers, destroy them!"

Once the Sentinels are defeated, they continue to advance and find some supplies near a portal. Continuing ahead, more Aggressor Sentinels show up.

  • Brute Squad Leader: "More of those cursed machines!"

Some Aggressor Sentinels approach them from behind.

  • Brute Squad Leader: "They're behind us now! Stay alert!"

Defeating all of them, they continue to push forward. Another squad is seen scanning supplies before they are obtained.

  • Brute: "This way, brothers! Our base is up ahead!"


Sentinels are seen attacking the Banished.

  • Voridus: "The Sentinels are attacking our base!"
  • Pavium: "Voridus! The Orbital Designator shows they're coming from a nearby launching bay."

A launching bay can be seen as Aggressor Sentinels and Protector Sentinels come out of it.

  • Voridus: "Fear not, Pavium. One of my new toys should handle them. Fire a disruption emitter at the launching bay. Its EMP field will stun those Sentinels!"


Calling a Disruption Emitter, the launching bay is disabled, and any Sentinels in its range are stunned.

  • Voridus: "Now, hit them while they are defenseless!"
  • Pavium: "Voridus, the EMP field from that emitter is fluctuating."
  • Voridus: "I made a few improvements, and now it affects a much larger area."

Countdown start at 5 minutes to prepare the base for an attack.

  • Pavium: "Your 'improvements' have shortened the duration of the EMP itself. You will need to replace it soon!"

The Banished clear the area of Sentinels and begin preparing the base.

  • Pavium: "Voridus, my Orbital Designator is yours upon request. It will help you spot those launching bays."
  • Voridus: "Get that base upgraded, we're going to need to build defenses!"

If the turrets are not yet upgraded while the Banished are assembling their forces.

  • Voridus: "We will need anti-air defenses to deal with the Sentinels! Upgrade the turrets!"

When all turrets are constructed and upgraded to Anti-air.

  • Voridus: "Good, we've built turrets. Those will help protect our base as we make our way to High Charity."

The minimap shows where the Sentinels are coming from.

  • Voridus: "Be watchful of the launching bays! We cannot let the Sentinels overrun us! Make sure we have Reavers on the ground as well."

When an Disruption Emitter runs out.

  • Voridus: "We need another emitter, get one ready!"


  • Voridus: "We've used up one of our emitters, replace it!"

Checking around the base, they find another launching bay, but two Forerunner Turrets are defending it. The Banished land another Disruption Emitter to stun it.

  • Voridus: "There's a launching bay close by! We must stun it!"

The timer to prepare the base reaches 0.

  • Pavium: "Voridus, you're going to be facing more Sentinels than we ever have before. Tell me you have a plan."
  • Voridus: "I'm putting it into action right now!"


A Volatile Scarab lands on the field.

  • Pavium: "Very subtle."


  • Brute: "Voridus, we have placed the markers to show the route for your Scarab!"

The Scarab's Health is shown on the screen.

The Scarab starts to destroy the barricade.

  • Voridus: "There's still so much wreckage lying around High Charity, it's going to take me a while to carve through it. Next time the Covenant lose a war, I hope they clean up after themselves!"
  • Pavium: "We should proceed with caution, Voridus. There are strange readings from inside the wreckage. You know the tales of the Gravemind and the corruption it spread inside High Charity. If true, then it could be a greater threat than even the Covenant were."
  • Voridus: "More lies from the Prophets. Even if there was once such a threat, any "monsters" would be long dead by now."

The Sentinels start to engage the Scarab, but the Banished quickly destroy them.

When the Scarab is under attack.

  • Voridus: "Protect your Scarab! Do your duty!"


  • Voridus: "I'm under attack! Act quickly!"


  • Voridus: "I'm under fire! Take care of it, NOW!"


  • Voridus: "Enough fun. Back to the mission!"


  • Voridus: "Do I have to tell you again? Protect your leader!"

or, when Voridus is getting more irritated.

  • Voridus: "I hate these things! Why must they plague me?!"


  • Voridus: "Damn these infernal things!"


  • Voridus: "Are you blind? The Scarab is under attack!"

The Banished defeat the Sentinels that are attacking the Scarab.

  • Voridus: "Fall before me! Hahah!"


  • Voridus: "See them burn! Hahah!"


  • Voridus: "HA! I hope you don't need that."


  • Voridus: "Hahahaha!"


  • Voridus: "Enjoy my plasma beam!"


  • Voridus: "Disapponting! I though the explosion would be bigger!"

When the barricade's health reaches 50%

  • Voridus: "Halfway there! Keep firing!"

The work continues while Banished continue to defend the Scarab. When the barricade's health reaches 25%:

  • Voridus: "Almost there! Keep going!"

When an emitter has expired at one of the launch bays.

  • Voridus: "One of our emitter has expired, prepare another!"


  • Voridus: "Prepare another emitter, we've used one up."

When the wreckage is finally destroyed

  • Voridus: "The wreckage has been removed! Move out on me!"

The Banished start advancing and encounter Forerunner Turrets on the way.

  • Voridus: "Pavium, we have encountered a new Forerunner defense system - turrets!"
  • Pavium: "The area around High Charity is more fortified than anywhere else. It is clear we are treading where we should not."
  • Voridus: "The Banished go where they want and destroy any who oppose! Is Atriox's rise not proof of this?"
  • Pavium: "Atriox uses cunning as well as strength. A wise warrior does not pick a fight with an unknown foe."

They continue to advance and destroy any Sentinels that get in their way. Reaching another barricade, the Scarab starts to work on it while the Banished defend it from Sentinels.

When the barricade's health reaches 50%:

  • Voridus: "Structural integrity at fifty-percent!"

When the barricade's health reaches 25%:

  • Voridus: "The wreckage is nearly destroyed! Get ready to move!"

When the second barricade is destroyed:

  • Voridus: "Wreckage destroyed! Move out!"

Continuing to advance, the Banished find some UNSC forces.

  • Voridus: "The humans are here! They will not stop us from taking what we want! Wipe them out!"

The Banished start to engage the UNSC.

  • Voridus: "Pavium, the humans are here!"
  • Pavium: "What? If they crept beneath our scans their forces must be small. Simply a reconnaissance mission."
  • Voridus: "Then I'll make sure they don't report anything back."

They find two UNSC minibases, and the Banished attacks them.

  • Voridus: "Disable those turrets!"

When the UNSC call in ODSTs.

  • Voridus: "The humans are sending in support! Make sure they regret it!"

When the UNSC forces are destroyed, the Banished continue advancing.

A 3-slot minibase becomes available for construction while the Scarab goes to the third obstacle and starts destroying it.

  • Voridus: "Clear the debris out and call in a new base! We'll need more troops to make sure this Scarab reaches High Charity!"
  • Pavium: "Voridus, from the size of that shell, it appears large portions of High Charity remain intact."
  • Voridus: "Which mean there are more weapons for us to plunder!"
  • Pavium: "Atriox warned us not to enter High Charity, Voridus. Focus on salvaging what remains around it."

On Pavium's side, the salvage drills becomes inoperable.

  • Pavium: "Voridus, I have run into the problems with the salvage drills. The power that runs under the surface here is surprisingly unstable."
  • Voridus: "What's the problem? Take it all!"
  • Pavium: "I'm not sure if our extractors could handle it in it's [sic] unrefined form."
  • Voridus: "I'm sure you'll figure it out, brother. That's why I keep you around!"

When the third barricade reaches 50%:

  • Voridus: "We're halfway through the wreckage. Keep going!"

When the third barricade reaches 25%:

  • Voridus: "We've nearly blasted through. Be ready to go."

When the Scarab destroys the third barricade:

  • Voridus: "Wreckage clear! Let's get going!"

Advancing, the Banished find a launching bay, and Aggressor Sentinels arrive to ambush the Banished.

  • Voridus: "We're being ambushed! Disrupt that launching bay!"

The Banished continue to punch through the Sentinels while continue to escort the Scarab. Ahead they find a 2-slot minibase and call in a base drop to create reinforcements as they approach High Charity.

  • Voridus: "We're almost at High Charity. There may be more resistance, bolster our forces!"

Continuing ahead, the Scarab stops, as the lightbridge is out. The Banished activate it and the Scarab continues to advance. The Banished find the Sentinel Defense Network interface, with many Sentinels defending it.

  • Voridus: "Pavium, I've found some kind of Forerunner interface, and there are more Sentinels nearby."
  • Pavium: "Be careful, Voridus. There is still much we don't understand about the Forerunners and their machines. You may make things worse."
  • Voridus: "Don't fret, brother. I can handle it. I'm going to investigate. Scarab Commander, continue smashing through that wreckage."

The Scarab starts working on destroying the wreckage while Voridus tries to disable the Sentinel defense network.

  • Voridus: "Protect the Scarab while I try and deactivate the Sentinel defenses!"

Voridus starts working on the devices.

  • Voridus: "Voridus finds you wanting!"

While defending the Scarab, Voridus discoveres the defense network that has security levels.

  • Voridus: "Aha! It seems to have several security levels and the first one should be broken when I do...this!"

The first level defenses are deactivated, but the Sentinel start to attack more fiercely than before.

  • Voridus: "It worked! That's the first level deactivated."
  • Scarab Commander: "Voridus! The Sentinel attacks have increased in ferocity!"
  • Voridus: "Come to see who's undoing your work, eh? Destroy them! I'm not finished here yet! Use the Disruption Emitter! Nothing must stop our Scarab!"

After breaking through wreckage and clearing out the Sentinels, the Scarab advances again.

  • Scarab Commander: "They're down. Now let's get moving, our orders await!"

Ahead, multiple Forerunner Turrets try to stop the Scarab.

  • Voridus: "Is this the extend of their defenses! Pah!"

When a Forerunner turret is destroyed

  • Voridus: "Build a better one next time."

Voridus figures out how to disable another security level, and the Sentinels increased their forces.

  • Voridus: "Yes, I've got it! Keep that Scarab moving. I've breached the second security level. I just need some time to deactivate it."
  • Scarab Commander: "Voridus, The Sentinels' numbers have increased again!"
  • Voridus: "Then deal with them! Use everything you have!"

If player spots a minibase close to the launch bay.

  • Voridus: "There's a prime location for a base expansion near that launching bay."

If the disruption emitter is ready, but player does not use it.

  • Voridus: "What are you waiting for? Use a Disruption Emitter to stun any Sentinels launching from it!"

The Scarab continues to advance while the Banished continue to defend the Scarab.

  • Voridus: "Take the base so we can divide the Sentinels' focus and stagger their attacks! My Scarab must make it to High Charity in one piece!"

Voridus continue to work on defense network, while some Reavers protect Voridus from Sentinels that are trying to stop him.

  • Voridus: "Every time I think I've solved it...wait, this looks promising."

Voridus continues to try disable the defense network.

  • Voridus: "Mysteries are what kept the Covenant blinkered and weak, we will smash through them!"

Voridus is almost done with his work, while Scarab continues to push on.

  • Voridus: "Almost there. Yes, this should be it."

The Sentinels send even more Aggressor and Protector Sentinels towards the Scarab.

  • Scarab Commander: "The Sentinels are sending even more against us!"
  • Voridus: "They're getting desperate! I must be close to completely shutting them down!"

The Scarab approaches the High Charity.

  • Scarab Commander: "We are approaching High Charity now, Voridus."
  • Voridus: "At last, Pavium! I hope your pack is ready to transport the riches we find nearby!"
  • Pavium: "Stay alert, you fool. There is a massive Sentinel wave flying in your direction!"

Reaching the destination, two Retriever Sentinels approach the Scarab and start attacking, while the final puzzle appears.

  • Scarab Commander: "Voridus! The Ark has sent Retrievers to stop us!"
  • Voridus: "I tire of their interference! I'll use this thing to deactivate the Sentinel defenses once and for all!"

The Scarab starts firing at Retriever, but the Scarab is outgunned against it.

  • Scarab Commander: "Voridus! We're not doing any damage against those Retrievers. How we will stop them?"

If player takes too long to solve he final puzzle.

  • Scarab Commander: "We need those defenses shut down, Voridus. These Retrievers are unstoppable!"


  • Scarab Commander: "Voridus, we can't defeat these Retrievers! We need you to shut down the defenses!"


  • Scarab Commander: "Voridus, the Retrievers still attack us! You must deactivate the defenses soon!"

Once the final puzzle is solved, the Sentinels are destroyed and the launch bay is disabled for good.

  • Voridus: "The Sentinel defenses have been deactivated! They will interfere no longer!"
  • Pavium: "Remember, brother, our orders are to leave the shell of High Charity intact. There should be enough pickings for us around the perimeter."


The Scarab approaches High Charity.

  • Voridus: "So you've said many times. I can handle myself, brother. Voridus, out."

The Scarab arrives at the site and fires its main cannon, opening a hole in the shield.

  • Voridus: "It's time we got inside to take what is ours!"

Two Banshees arrives at the scene.

  • Voridus: "Go brothers! It's time for us to get our reward!"

Cinematic Cutscene

The containment shield around High Charity is seen from a distance above the Ark. Zooming in, the scene moves to a Scarab over Voridus' pack as they gather at hole made in the shield. Voridus send a squad of Jiralhanae to scout inside High Charity for anything worth taking.

Entering High Charity, the Brutes begin noisily searching, and something moves unnoticed under in darkness. One of the Jiralhanae hears something and stops the others. Suddenly, a Pod infector runs at them, but is killed by a Jiralhanae's Grenflekt Workshop Spiker.

Examining the corpse, they laugh but they heard another sound. The hallways around them start emitting light and the Jiralhanae realize that they are surrounded. One looks in horror at something approaching. Sounds can be heard from inside High Charity and, hearing a roar, Voridus turns around.

A Jiralhanae combat form staggers out of High Charity to Voridus and his pack. A Jiralhanae tries to approach it, but Voridus stops him from getting close.

  • Voridus: "No."

Voridus dons his mask.

  • Voridus: "Prepare yourselves."

The ground shakes as a giant horde of Pod Infectors and other Flood forms rush out of High Charity, and the infected Jiralhanae roars. The Jiralhanae start to fight the Flood but suddenly, a Flood gaunt form rolls through them and extend its tentacles, catching a Brute's arm. Another Flood gaunt form trips him, and a Pod Infector latches onto him.

Voridus defends himself against Pod Infectors and punches a Flood gaunt form, stomping on it. He then fires one of his weapon at a Flood form that has caught a Jiralhanae Warlord, rescuing him. The Warlord immediately charges up his gravity hammer and smashes it to the ground, killing a swath of infectors. However a Flood gaunt form swiftly catches his head and pulls him backwards, attempting to take him down.

Another Flood gaunt form rolls in behind Voridus and grabs his arm while other form grabs his other arm. Voridus watches his fellow Jiralhanae struggling and determined not to be turned into one of them, switches his blade to the back and stabs it, throws the other one to the ground, and stomps it. He then quickly slashes another Flood gaunt form while others rolls around, and his units struggle against the Flood. However, most of the Flood swarm ignore the Voridus' unit and as run past them, out of High Charity.

Mission Complete

Level ends

Leader Power[edit]

  • Atriox's Bulwark I, II and III
  • Disruption Emitter I
  • Rain of Fire I, II and III
  • Orbital Designator I
  • Burnout I, II and III

Unit Deployment[edit]

  • 2 Reavers
  • 2 Grunt Infantry Squad
  • 3000 Supplies
  • 1000 Power



  • The Scarab cannot be controlled by the player in this level, so it must be escorted by player units.
    • Bring at least two or three Huragok to heal the Scarab.
    • Build at least ten Reavers to counter Protector Sentinels.
    • Banshees are also recommended since it has fast mobility and fair firepower against Sentinels, especially with the Plasma Torpedo upgrade.
  • The Disruptor Emitter lasts for three minutes, and the cooldown is around 60 seconds.
  • Take your time with moving your units because Voridus' Scarab only stops at the boulder barricades and the final lightbridge.
    • Voridus will not advance as long as the lightbridge remains deactivated. Use this opportunity to bolster your troops, switching to anti-air units and Huragoks.
  • The code to deactivate the Sentinel defense network is to spin the outer ring left three times, spin the middle ring right one time, and then spin the inner ring right twice.
  • The Retriever Sentinels are too powerful to handle on this level. Prioritize on solving the puzzle when they appear.

Bonus and Optional Objectives[edit]

approximate location of the Covenant Resource crates needed for the secondary objectives in "What Could Go Wrong?"
Approximate locations of the Covenant resource crates needed for the bonus objective.
  • The two Reavers are located east of the Banished base. They are attacked by a mix of infantry and Warthogs, so bring Marauders to counter them.
  • Each Sentinel launching bay has two turret slots next to them. Be sure to build both turrets at each bay.
  • When Voridus reaches the Sentinel Defense Network, the fog of war will disappear, revealing everything on the map. Use this opportunity to quickly look for any missing caches and Power Nodes.
  • There are four Power nodes in this level. The first is just east of the Banished base. The second is at the end of the east path leading away from the Banished base. The third is northeast of the second barricade. The fourth and final one is located in the westernmost cliff edges, just north of a Sentinel launching bay.
    • The player needs to build at least one unit of Jump Pack Brutes, because the westernmost Power node requires Jump Pack Brutes to jump over a chasm to reach it.
  • Like the optional objective in the level One Three Zero, although the wording which suggests the player must gather the resources from the silos, the objective actually tracks the number of silos being destroyed.
  • The ten buildings containing Covenant resources are located:
  1. At where the player is introduced to the destructible resource building
  2. At just before reaching the Banished base
  3. On a path heading west of the Banished base
  4. West of the Sentinel launching bay south of the Banished base
  5. East of the Banished base, where the two Reavers can be rescued from the attack of UNSC units
  6. On a ridge northwest of the first minibase slot, next to one of the Sentinel launching bays
  7. On a plateau east of the UNSC minibases, next to one of the Phoenix Logs in this level
  8. On a ridge west of the UNSC minibases
  9. On a plateau south of the UNSC minibases, near one of the Sentinel launching bays
  10. On a plateau north of the lightbridge, near the Forerunner puzzle



  • This marks the first and only campaign level in the series where the UNSC appear as enemies intended to be fought by the player.
  • The ending cinematic cutscene is featured in the E3 2017 trailer. The trailer features a minor difference in that the Jiralhanae was shown dropping a Spiker, while on this level, he does not drop his weapon.
  • While most of the Jiralhanae were seen wielding the Paegaas Workshop gravity hammer in Halo Wars 2 cinematic and gameplay, the Akelas Workshop gravity hammer makes a cameo appearance in the ending cinematic of this level, with two such hammers being held by two Jiralhanae around Voridus. This marks the only other appearance of the Akelas variant in the games since Halo Wars.


  • Although narratively Pavium is elsewhere on the Ark and that Voridus is in charge of the mission, Pavium serves as the leader in the gameplay segment of this level.


Concept art[edit]


Preceded by
Not on My Watch
Halo Wars 2 campaign levels
What Could Go Wrong?
Succeeded by
Fighting Retreat