Bathed in frozen moonlight, this abandoned drilling platform is now a monument to human frailty.
Blackout, also known as War Games Map_Set/: 037-2, is a multiplayer map featured in Halo 3 and is a remake of the Halo 2 map, Lockout. It is featured as one of the three maps in the Legendary map pack that became available on April 15, 2008.
Design and Layout
Rather than a Forerunner facility, like its predecessor, the map takes place in the Arctic on Weather Station Z/41. The map is built around a helicopter pad, branching off of this pad in all four directions are buildings, each building has an upper and lower level, and two of them have an even higher floor. These two towers have been dubbed the "Sniper Tower" and the "BR Tower" as these are the weapons which spawns atop each of them. The Sniper Tower (where the Sniper Rifle spawns) is the smaller of the two, and the BR Tower is the larger. The other two buildings consist of a walled room that leads to the BR Tower, and a tall building that has an "Air Lift" in it. The Air Lift building has an exit at the Helipad and the lower level. To reach the top of the building you ride an Air Lift; a large fan which propels air, and you, upwards.
Blackout's code name was Moonlight Sonata during its development due to the level's dark night-time sky, and as an allusion to one of Beethoven's works. It replaces Assembly in the Halo 3 Legendary map pack. Assembly was included in the Mythic map pack. Rather than the blue gravity lift that was featured in Lockout, Blackout has a red airshaft, which appears to fit the atmosphere better.
In the second most recent ViDoc, multiple forge items from Blackout were revealed. They include detailed staircases, man-cannons, standard doorways, portals, and blocking doorways, shield doors, and newly edited shipping crates that stay once they are placed. Another new object is the FX filter. Using these will change the tint, contrast, brightness, and overall color of the map, and it is recommended to experiment. You may combine them, to make cool effects. The barracks on Blackout contain a basketball hoop, and the Battle rifle tower is now featured with windows compared to being fully opened.
- Doors placed in certain entrances usually make Infection Mode more interesting and challenging.
- Using the doors you can block off whole rooms of the level, this small change alone can change the way the level plays, in respect to movements of the players, effectively changing the entire dynamic of the game.
- If you pick up a turret while somebody's in it, then push him or her as far up as possible, you can send him or her past the barrier and he or she can float objects way above the level. But there's a death barrier if you go too high.
- Through a glitch in Forge, you are able to spawn a teleporter inside of the smokestacks. Once inside, however, the player has very limited mobility, and if moved in a certain spot, will be killed by the Guardians or the death will count as a suicide.
- When closing off rooms, make sure that there is no vertical way to get in, or find some way to block off said entrances.
- The Large Shield Door, fits perfectly over the larger gap in the wall on BR3, creating a good safe haven where you can let your shields recharge.
- Helicopter pad
- Shotgun hall
- BR tower
- Sniper tower
- Air lift room
- Sword room
- As mentioned above you can shoot the Fusion coils to launch the Sniper Rifle toward you.
- You can camp in the center room (under the Helicopter pad), on the slanted walls, a Shotgun is recommended.
- If you inch up on the wind tunnel, in the lift room at the top, you can fall down without being shot back up.
- Blackout has, just as Lockout, many combinations of death defying jumps. Learn the map, and use these to drop down behind your enemy or in your enemy's blind spot. One handy jump is from BR1 to BR2. Along the wall on the hatch that you can drop through from BR2 to BR1, there is a little ledge that you can jump on. If you jump on the ledge, you can jump up to the next floor. This is useful when there is someone above you because it will surprise him or her and it is quicker.
- Control of the open areas depends on control of the sniper tower and the sniper.
- A great way to kill the opposing team is to control the air duct, Sniper tower, and helipad. Concentrate your fire when you see them.
- When holding the helipad in SWAT patrol the ramps. Many people go up the left one. You can get many kills and save your buddies if you can kill the enemy fast.
- The bottom floors are common in firefights, throw a few grenades into the gaps on the other side to soften them up for your teammates below.
- If you have the high ground, you can jump to give yourself an even better height advantage, sometimes your opponent will back up only to fall to their deaths!
- While alone on BR3 (third floor of BR Tower) always watch behind you. If you are alone and your team-mates are covering other points of the map, your opponents usually spawn below you at BR2 or BR1, offering a perfect chance for them to come behind you.
- Many players often take the sword without bothering to look there. You can hide in the corner and easily assassinate them. It is risky because the sword user can see you and easily kill you, but if he fails to see you it can be quite humiliating.
- The yellow walls can be jumped on top of, giving you a vantage point of the walkways below.
- Always remember that when you are on Top Lift, you can always jump to Elbow if there is an enemy there, a team-mate in trouble or you just want to make an escape. This escape is actually better than dropping down the hatches on the side because you can get fragged easily.
- When playing Team SWAT, if you spawn at Lift in the beginning of the game then do not go up the lift. Your enemy will most likely be expecting you and you will be killed as soon as you get up. If you spawn at Rec Room, then look towards lift. If there's nobody there or you killed him or her already, then look towards Elbow. You can usually get some kills early in the game this way.
- Try to place your grenades carefully, many can bounce and sail off the side of the map.
- Unlike in Lockout the bottom passage is not entirely lined up, or at least less so than Lockout. This was probably meant to reduce long range battles down the passage and make it an easier area to traverse.
- As in Lockout, close-ranged weapons are key.
- You can drop down about halfway at the airlift, armed with a close range weapon you can ambush another player.
Changes from Lockout
- Many minor geometry changes were made, due to the fact it was rebuilt from scratch. Notably...
- The long sight-line from the room under the sniper tower to the opposite side of the map has been broken.
- While the walkway above it remains the same width, the shotgun alley is much wider, and contains two alcoves of either side of it. This results in the walkway simply being denoted by the two railings.
- In the centre of the map, some railings have increased in height but have had windows added in them.
- The 'BR' tower is much wider, and the pathway leading to the back of its top level no longer connects to the centre, rather it is offset to the left (from the perspective of someone entering the roof using it).
- Players also cannot shoot from the bottom level of the "BR" Tower to the bottom level of the "Sniper" Tower.
- A gap in the railings has been added, on the walkway leading from the bottom layer of the 'BR' tower to the top. This allows easier travel from the bottom level to the room beneath the centre platform.
- Several jumps have been removed to limit mobility around the map, as well as the removal of a "window" in the Library area that does not allow the players to see under the middle of the level.
- Most of the map is larger, except the wind lift room, which is now significantly smaller.
- All visuals have been given a complete overhaul. The Forerunner design has been scrapped in favour of the more gritty look of a Human drilling platform.
- Bungie claimed that one of the only differences between Lockout and Blackout is that the Needlers were replaced with Brute Spikers.
- The lights in the sky are the Aurora Borealis (Northern Lights).
- Bungie claims that the model for Blackout was rebuilt because the original model of Lockout was too messy and chaotic to work with.
- The map is slightly larger than Lockout in some aspects and areas: the Battle rifle tower is actually larger, the Barracks are smaller, and the Platform next to the Sniper tower is larger.
- Upon falling off the platform, a splash can be seen after your character lands in the water. On other occasions, if your character lands in the water flat on his/her back or stomach he/she will land and slowly sink downward into the ocean.
- The windows throughout the map are identical, including their reflection. The windows were originally made for the Barracks (opposite the lift). The reflection when you look in these windows is a blurry view of the lift area. If you look into the other windows (bottom of sniper tower are easiest to see), you will see the same image.
- Blackout is a favored map for Team SWAT because of its mix of mid and short range combat.
- The room right behind the sniper spawn cannot be entered. Even using glitches to get your way in will result in death by the guardians.
- Interestingly this map has been a hotbed for the Ghosts of Halo, perhaps none-too-surprisingly, as the first Ghost of Halo was reported at Lockout, Blackout's predecessor.
- Blackout, along with Cold Storage and Orbital, are the only maps in Halo 3 that do not spawn a Brute Shot by default.
- If you look in one of the rooms with the items hanging up on the wall, there are core samples on shelves that can only be obtained by drilling, thus explaining the "Drilling Platform" description.
- Exactly every 5 minutes, a red comet will soar over the sky for a split second. This also appears in Sandbox.
- Bungie stated in the Legendary Vidoc that, using Forge you can block off all the doorways in Blackout. However, there is not a large enough supply of doors to block all the doorways inside.
- Unlike Lockout, the map isn't featured in Big Team or Squad Battle playlists.
- This map was originally going to be set on a partially destroyed Strato-Sentinel on The Ark, near the planetoid in its center.
- When having FX Juicy and Pen and Ink, the map looks like it is covered in snow.
- In Halo: Reach's Forge it is possible to remake this map, just with the absence of a few weapons.
- This is true also with Halo 4's Forge.
- In many of Halo 4's playlists, one can find remake of this map (also retaining a lot of features from the original), called Shutout.
- ↑ 1.0 1.1 Bungie.net: Halo 3 Legendary map pack
- ↑ Bungie.net: Legendary Map: Blackout
- ↑ Halo Waypoint: Earth