Pods were originally intended to deploy the infrastructure required to begin and sustain Humanity's colonization efforts. The necessities of the Human-Covenant war forced the UNSC to re-purpose the Pods for a more militaristic role.
Pods are capable of transporting and placing a firebase on a suitable landing zone designated by friendly ground forces. Similar in design to the Albatross, Pods are launched from the Phoenix-class colony ship and are capable of flight in both vacuum and atmosphere. This maneuverability allows the Pod to risk entering contested LZs to deploy its cargo; integral weaponry was deemed unnecessary, since the Pod is not intended to linger in a combat zone.
Pods are massive in size, being big enough to carry half a UNSC Firebase. They are roughly square in shape, featuring a protruded area at the front of the ship which most likely serves as the bridge.
Pods feature four tilt engines, two mounted on opposite sides of the ship, and four conventional, rear-mounted engines. The configuration allows for easy maneuverability in space, especially amongst debris fields.
- The Pod has a slight resemblance to the Troop Carriers used to transport troops in the film Starship Troopers.
- The Spirit of Fire at the beginning of the Five Long Years opening cinematic shows the starboard side of the ship deploying along with several Pelicans, three of its five Pods while two remained docked, if its port side is identical then the total compliment will be ten, the number however is halved when the ship later collides with a CPV-class heavy destroyer while entering the Forerunner Shield World.
- Although they only build buildings in game, they are seen transporting troops in the opening.
- The Pod can potentially host a substantially large number of troops, given the multiple decks seen on the vessels in the opening sequence.
- The circle in the middle of the top of the Pod rotates after it lands, probably unscrewing the firebase.
- Halo Wars (First appearance)