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In the Halo Universe, especially Halo itself, there are many tactical courses for every kind of battle. One of these courses is the process of securing, arming, and defending a large combat position (i.e. a base).
The advantages of having a base include:
- A good defensive position.
- A fallback position in case you need to retreat from a battle and recharge your shields.
- A good place to assault enemy forces from a covered spot.
- A place to snipe at enemy forces while the rest of your team mops up the stragglers.
- A good place to store ammunition and different weapons for future usage.
- If room is available, a good place to park vehicles.
There are some unfortunate disadvantages to a base.
- Many bases in campaign have insufficient cover, and most are few and far between.
- Very few bases have weapon emplacements, and those that do are usually in the wrong places.
- Most bases have only light weapon caches, usually lacking heavy weapons like the Rocket launcher and Sniper Rifle.
- Most do not have entrances that can be closed, and are very vulnerable to infiltration.
Assault Team Edit
When assaulting a defensive position, teamwork is a vital commodity to secure a base. It is strongly discouraged to try and take over a base controlled by the other team. Depending on game size, up to fifteen people, any number of them against you could be within. As such, nobody without the advantage of Overshield, Shotgun, rocket launcher, Energy Sword and numerous Grenades should try it alone. For those who are lucky enough to have support:
- Communication between your teammates helps immensely. That way, you will be armed not only with guns and grenades, but with the knowledge of the enemies' position, weaknesses, etc.
A basic team should have:
- At least two riflemen: In Halo, this means pistols. In Halo 2, either the Carbine or the Battle rifle. In Halo 3, this can mean either dual Magnums, or a Battle Rifle/Carbine.
- SAW: this player, in Halo CE should have an Assault Rifle, In Halo 2 dual-wielded SMGs, Plasma Rifles or a Sentinel Beam. In Halo 3, this calls for the HMG or the Plasma Cannon .
- One sniper/scout: Essential for gaining much-needed Intel on the base's defenses, as well as quickly clearing a path to the area.
- One AA player: armed with a Rocket Launcher, Fuel Rod Cannon, or Missie Pod. While not strictly necessary, it is wise to plan for your enemies to cluster up so that a well-placed rocket can finish them.
- A leader: preferably armed with versatile, non-limiting weapons such as the Assault Rifle. While it is possible to give soldiers two functions, it is generally a bad plan to cut the sniper or AA man out of the equation.
Arming the TeamEdit
Your team needs the right weapons to give them a good chance of victory. The following is a list to give you an idea of what each person needs.
Rifleman: The standard team member is still a vital asset to the overall assault/defense force. Obviously, they would need the basic all-scenario weapon. This could be a Pistol (Halo: CE) or a Battle Rifle/Carbine (Halo 2 and 3). A flexible, Rifleman Style arsenal would be:
- Primary: Pistol (Halo)/Battle Rifle/Carbine (Halo 2 and 3)/DMR/Needle Rifle (Halo' Reach)
- Reserve: Shotgun/Energy Sword
Automatic Weapon Man: This player uses the "machine gun" to provide suppressive, covering, and heavy weapon fire for the rest of his/her squad. Although the Halo Universe lacks a specifically designed suppressive weapon, various weapons can be used as such:
Primary: Assault Rifle (Halo)/Sentinel Beam (Halo 2)/Dual Plasma Rifles (Halo 2)/Turret (Halo 3)/Turret/Focus Rifle (Halo Reach)
Sniper: An invaluable person on the team, the Sniper has the responsibility of taking out enemies at extreme range, scouting out areas, and providing the rest of the team with extremely necessary information of enemies positions. To this end, they should be armed with both a Sniper Weapon and a good close range weapon, in case they are surprised by an enemy.
Primary Weapon: Sniper Rifle (Halo: CE, 2,3, and Reach) Beam Rifle (Halo 2 and 3) or the Focus Rifle (Halo Reach)
Secondary: Assault Rifle, Plasma Rifle, Plasma Pistol (Halo: CE) SMG, Magnum, Plasma Rifle, Carbine, Battle Rifle, Brute Shot (Halo 2)
Anti Armor Man: This player may not be that necessary (depending on the map) but is still an essential asset to a team. To this end, they should be armed with explosive weapons, and have the first dibs on the nearest plasma grenades. Their secondary weapon should be an all around good weapon, and if there is no vehicle to decommission, there is always the unfortunate group of slobs that will face a rocket propelled High Explosive doom.
Primary Weapon: Rocket Launcher, Shotgun (Halo: CE) Rocket Launcher, Brute Shot, Fuel Rod Cannon (Campaign) (Halo 2)
Secondary Weapon: Pistol, Plasma Rifle, Assault Rifle, Needler (Halo: CE) Battle Rifle, Carbine, SMG, (Halo 2)
Securing a Base Edit
In multiplayer, you will usually have a ready-to-go base at your disposal. However, in Campaign, you usually need to clear out hostile enemy forces before you can have your room with a view. Veterans should know the in's and outs, do's and don'ts, but here are a couple of tips newer players might want to follow.
- When you are charging an enemy base, it is good practice to have a flexible arsenal. The best and most obvious choice would be an M6D Pistol and an M90 Shotgun (or a BR55 Battle rifle and a Shotgun), but if you can't get your hands on these weapons, here is a list of alternatives:
Medium to Long Range
- SRS99C S2-AM or SRS99D S2-AM Sniper Rifle: No-scoping is effective if you are good at it.
- M6D Pistol: Using the zoom is a must. Remember, this is basically a rifle in disguise.
- BR55 Battle Rifle: If you are fighting multiple enemies, level the rifle at head height and sweep as you fire.
- Beam Rifle: Be careful not to overheat. If you are careful, you can keep up shots at a constant pace, although you'll seldom need to. Don't panic or you will be killed.
- Covenant Carbine: Due to its fast firing rate, this is even better than the Battle Rifle when used correctly.
- Plasma Rifle: Alone, these guns are poor; when dual-wielded they are able to fill the air with a wall of plasma in seconds.
- Sentinel Beam: High rate of fire, reasonable damage, and good accuracy. Excellent for suppressive fire, but they overheat quickly enough that you'll want to pulse shots.
- M90 Shotgun: Unstoppable. Even a sword-wielder cannot stand against the shotgun.
- MA5B Assault Rifle: Second only to the shotgun at close range, the Assault Rifle's high rate of fire, good damage and fast melee make it a force to be reckoned with.
- M7/Caseless Sub Machine Gun: Although the muzzle climb is extremely distracting and the bullets do little damage, a pair of these can clear a room with surprising speed.
- M6C Magnum Sidearm: Although it takes too long to lower shields safely, bear in mind that you can kill sixty people without needing to pick up more ammo. The use of plasma weapons to lower a shield and the magnum to deliver headshots should not be ignored.
- Energy Sword: A great weapon, but it tends to make its wielder overconfident. A skillful grenadier can all too easily defeat a swordsman, as can anyone with a shotgun, sniper or Noob Combo.
- Brute Shot: Although the Shot tends to make things a trifle chaotic, sometimes chaos is all you need.
Some general tips:
- When attacking a base, you need to watch out for turrets, snipers, and infantry. Keep all of these factors in mind, and you might just succeed in getting your space.
- Lob grenades. It will both scatter and damage your enemies.
- Whenever possible, grab power-ups. They will come in handy if you are surrounded. When going in a full frontal assault, the Overshield is a must. It will give you better protection from just about everything. On the other hand, it will create a field of easily visible interference around you, making you an easy target for enterprising snipers. Try to strafe, find cover, etc. When going in the stealthy, SpecOps way, you'll want to go with camouflage. The camo will greatly reduce your overall visibility, but only for about 45 seconds. In Halo 2, this only works in multiplayer, as power-ups are not available in Campaign.
- Whenever possible, try to use vehicles to get to your base, preferably small speedy ones. Be warned though: Most clans have excellent snipers that can shoot drivers right out of their cockpits. Try not to roll over and you should be okay.
- A good tactic to take is to find a secluded spot and either snipe at the enemy or bombard the enemy with some sort of explosive weapon, like a Brute Shot or something along those lines. This should weaken your enemies and make it easier for your teammates to eliminate the stragglers.
In any case, just make sure to strafe, find cover, and when all else fails, stick to the basic rule: survival.
Taking the BaseEdit
Okay, if you've made it into the base, give yourself a pat on the back. However, your job is only half done, as you now need to secure the base. Time for close-range combat.
- Close range weaponry is a must at this stage. Shotguns, Energy Swords, SMGs, Assault Rifles; anything that you have as your secondary weapon should be used now.
- To clear a room, nothing does better than grenades. If you still have any, chuck them through the doorway, wait for them to blow, then go in and wipe out your opponents.
- Brute Shot: This is a triple purpose weapon. In the right hands, this weapon is a shotgun, a rudimentary sword, and a room clearing device. Whenever possible, grab one, and when you're in the base, start pumping grenades, meleeing, and reloading if necessary. Keep this in mind.
- The Noob Combo can also be used in close range, if you have few other options. Put it to use if this is all you have. On the other hand, it can be far more devastating than anything else in the hands of a skilled wielder.
- The basic weaponry you might find in a base would be a battle rifle, a SMG or two, a magnum and a plasma rifle or pistol. There are only rarely power weapons, so make do with what you have at hand.
- Any number of dual-wielding combinations can be useful. SMG/Magnum will either save you or kill you, depending on how many headshots you can get. Dual SMGs can be effective, but take a long time to reload. SMG and plasma pistol can really wreak havoc; the pistol cuts through the shields, while the SMG takes down health. The plasma rifle can also be used to good effect with the SMG, and it has much more ammo than the pistol. With no access to power weapons, these combos will save your life in a base.
- When you are dual-wielding SMGs, using only one SMG at a time will put up a constant stream of lead and brass, so keep that in mind.
- Teams will often have a strategy in case somebody gets inside their base. Be it a hidden guy that will assassinate you, an unseen PG that sticks to you, or a sniper that will no-scope you. Try to keep all possible defenses in mind, but when it comes right down to it, you need to remember this phrase.
Defending a Base Edit
Having cleared a base of hostiles, set up shop, and established it as your territory, it is now time to defend. This is where, so often, assaults go wrong. People get secure too soon, confident that they are in control before they really are. Take care not to fall into this trap:
- You probably won't have much time to strategize a defensive plan, so use your eyes and knowledge of the base's layout. Figure out where the turrets are; next priority should be controlling grenades, ammunition and vehicles. If you are a squad leader, directing your allies to various parts of a base can make the difference between a surprise retaking and a rout for your enemy.
- Everybody needs to be stationed somewhere. Get a person on a turret, a person to guard the entrances, a spot for your sniper, a person to get in a tank (if there is one), and somebody to guard the flag/bomb/skull/etc. You need to do whatever you do best. Rallying your troops is one of the most key components of a good defense.
- Once again, communication is a must. Just check in, sound off that you are okay, etc.
- Turrets are all purpose weapons. They can suppress and annihilate infantry with incredible speed, and vehicles caught in the open will be harmed just the same.
- Keep your eyes peeled for small outcroppings of rocks, trees, bushes, etc. These are perfect, nondescript hiding places for snipers.
- Don't be a busybody and try to control everything that's going on. Sometimes its best to just let the chips fall where they may.
- The other team may try to create a distraction, such as blind firing into the direction of the enemy team. Though this is rare, keep in mind that some team leaders will be a little out there, and they may implement this sort of strategy.
- Whenever possible, listen to communications. Try to figure out where they are going, who the leader is, etc., etc.