The Type-46 Infantry Support Vehicle, more commonly identified as the Spectre by the UNSC, is a Covenant ground assault/transportation vehicle that was first seen by UNSC forces in 2546 during the Covenant invasion of Sargasso. It is only available in Halo 2.
The Spectre is a multi-sized, multi-troop armored transport vehicle of the Covenant military. The Spectre, like many other Covenant vehicles, has the ability to rapidly increase its speed with the aid of propulsion drive, but at the cost of great maneuverability. It offers two seating positions for additional passengers and thus allows them to add to the vehicle's firepower with their own weaponry. However, these seats are completely exposed and as such the passengers are very vulnerable to small arms fire and splash damage from nearby explosions. A protective metal hull shields the driver’s seat to some extent; the hull leaves the driver's upper body exposed to small arms and explosive fire.
The Spectre features a rear-mounted Plasma Turret as its primary armament which is capable of 360 degree firing arc and rapidly depleting an enemy's energy shield and suppress their advancement due to its high rate of fire. It provides a stable, mobile gun platform for heavy anti-infantry fire and a method of delivering troops into the heart of a battle.
The Spectre, similar to its UNSC counterpart, has a much more stable firing platform thanks to its flat and heavy platform design and evenly-placed propulsion drive. Its Plasma Turret is very accurate and has a high rate of fire, delivering a reasonable amount of damage to its target; it is ideal for taking down Banshees, and can be used with success against infantry. The wall-climbing capability makes it good for getting to hard-to-reach niches. The Spectre is capable of carrying two passengers in contrast to the Warthog's one passenger slot.
One of the disadvantages of the Spectre is the high vulnerability of its passengers to attacks. While the driver's seat is protected by the vehicle's hull, the passengers are an open target to small arms fire and splash damage from nearby explosions. Also, the Spectre turret can not be operated without a gunner, which renders the vehicle almost useless without two warriors to operate it.
The Spectre offers a defensive weapon, a rapid firing Plasma Cannon placed at the rear of the vehicle offering 360 degrees of fire. The weapon is somewhat powerful and can cut through enemy infantry with ease. The turret performs poorly against armored vehicles such as the Wraith and Scorpion Tank where shots fired bounce off but damage is still inflicted on the driver of the vehicle.
- Its rapid-firing linear plasma cannon makes it very useful against Banshees, because it is more accurate and fast instead of the normal, slow plasma bolts. On Legendary, a Spectre can be very irritating to a Banshee pilot as it is not very easy to hit.
- The Spectre, whilst disadvantaged in speed compared to other vehicles, has its advantages in combat. The Warthog can hold three people, where as the Spectre can hold four. This is a minor advantage, but can be useful as it provides extra fire support, giving the Spectre defense on all sides-especially if the occupants are armed with weapons like Rocket Launchers or Fuel Rod Guns (giving the Spectre a better chance against vehicles).
- The Spectre is the likely choice for getting to the top of multiplayer maps such as Coagulation and Burial Mounds, thanks to its infinite boosting ability.
- Similar to the Ghost, the Spectre is an ideal vehicle for splattering enemies.
- One excellent tactical strategy is to use the Spectres and other vehicles as a combination like the Warthog and Ghost, for more firepower and protection which is quite effective against groups and a small number of enemy infantry and vehicles.
- Spectres hold one extra player as opposed to the Warthog, a usual favorite for teams. While the Spectre is less commonly used, the extra seat provides advantages for objective based games, such as Capture the Flag.
- The Spectre is also suitable for rapid movement across a map. While players may obtain and stay in a Warthog, the Spectre can be used to carry a small team across distances to be closer to combat.
The first and foremost appearance of the Spectre is in the Halo pre-release, but was later cut out of Halo: Combat Evolved. Though it is exclusive to Halo 2 and the Halo pre-release, early Spectres were seen in the Halo E3 2000 Trailer, but did not make it into the final version of the game. It was replaced by its Brute counterpart, the Brute Prowler, in Halo 3 and seems to be the inspiration behind the Revenant in Halo: Reach.
- If the player presses and holds A while driving, the air brake will engage. The front end will rise, enabling the player to climb some walls.
- In gameplay, the turret's shots bounce off heavily armored vehicles such as Wraiths and Scorpions but they still cause damage to the driver of the vehicle.
- A glitch occurs when two players in the passenger seats have Sentinel Beams. If one player fires their Sentinel Beam, then the other player's Sentinel Beam will appear to fire as well, though this will not drain the second player's battery, and it will not increase the damage. If the second player fires their beam, the only effect on the target will be from them.
- Like most Covenant vehicles, the Spectre is named after some sort of spectral entity.
- The sound for the plasma turret of the Spectre was recycled for the turrets of the Brute Prowler and Wraith.
- In Halo: Reach, another new vehicle filling a similar role to the Spectre, the Revenant, makes its first appearance. It is also similar in terms of appearance, being the same color. Both vehicles also make the same sound when boosting.
- The Brute Prowler is a near perfect Brute interpretation of the Spectre, it has two side seats, a plasma turret and pilot seat, though the turret and pilot seat have swapped places.