When a game begins, the player is given the option of choosing a particular loadout. Loadouts are gametype specific and vary between playlists, meaning players cannot create their own custom loadout to bring to Matchmaking. They can, however, create custom loadouts for Custom Games and user-created Firefight modes. Each loadout has particular weapon, grenade, and Armor Abilities combinations.
Loadouts in Halo: Reach are fully customizable in Custom Games and local Firefight matches. Along with Armor Ability, grenade type, main weapon, and secondary weapon, players can also choose a name for their loadout, but cannot create a custom name. In addition to the names of existing loadouts, many additional name options are provided. These include:
- Spec Ops
- Armor Lock
- Active Camo
- Drop Shield
- Jet Pack
- Noble 1-6
- Ling Ling
- The 7 wood is available as a weapon for custom loadouts.
- The Loadout title "Redshirt" is a term used for characters who are killed soon after being introduced. The term originated from the television series "Star Trek".
- Among the list of titles are the names of known SPARTAN-IIs and SPARTAN-IIIs. However, there is also a number of other names. It is unknown if these names are those of other SPARTANs.