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In the sequel to Halo, Spartan-117, better known as the Master Chief, has returned to Earth, where he is promptly needed: despite all precautions taken, the Covenant have discovered the location of humanity's homeworld and are launching their attack. For some reason, however, their fleet is much smaller than expected. To solve this mystery, the Chief must return to the stars, learning more about the mysterious Halo rings and their constructors.

Meanwhile, the Covenant Elite who commanded the fleet at the Halo construct is blamed for the destruction of the ring and branded a heretic. The High Prophets grant him another chance, however: he is made the Arbiter, a special operative for the Prophets, ordered to carry out impossible missions. He will be dealing with dissent and rebellion among the Covenant - a conflict where he might find himself to be on the wrong side.

The player controls both the Chief and the Arbiter in Halo 2, a first-person shooter in the same style as the first game. Its main gameplay characteristics are the same: only two weapons can be carried at a time (leading to a tactical choice as to which are to be taken), instead of a standard health points system there is the recharging energy shield (leading to an emphasis on finding cover during firefights), AI-controlled teammates will fight along with the protagonist, and there are lots of sections involving vehicles.

New features include the ability to double-wield certain weapons, doubling the firing rate at the expense of accuracy, and the ability to execute melee attacks or throw grenades. Part of the weapon arsenal is unchanged from the first game, but there are also some additions. The human projectile weapons are mostly new and include a pistol, shotgun, SMG, and battle rifle. Returning are the sniper rifle and the rocket launcher. The Covenant energy-based weapons (still prone to overheating) from Halo all return, and new additions include several heavy hitters like the Brute Shot and Fuel Rod Gun along with the projectile-based Carbine and the Beam Rifle, both useful for sniping. The Energy Sword is a powerful melee weapon, able to kill most enemies with a single strike.

All vehicles from the original game also return: Warthog jeeps and Scorpion tanks for the Humans, Banshee fliers, Ghost gliders, and Wraith tanks for the Covenant. A new addition is the Covenant Spectre, which with its rear-mounted cannon wielded by a dedicated gunner is comparable to the Warthog. A new player ability concerning vehicles is to board them while in use and either kick off the driver and take over or in the case of heavy tanks, throw in a grenade.

The multiplayer component of the game has been greatly expanded. On the Xbox, Xbox Live is now supported in addition to split-screen and system link. The campaign can be played by two players on split-screen. Competitive game types include Slayer and Team Slayer (standard free-for-all deathmatch), Capture the Flag, Assault (planting a bomb in the enemy base), Territories (controlling sections of a map for a certain amount of time), Oddball (finding a skull on the map and then holding on to it as long as possible) and more. All types have several built-in variants and can also be customized further. Players can choose from Spartan and Covenant Elite skins. The PC version comes with a map editor.


Halo 2 Xbox You can change your colour and appearance at this screen.
Halo 2 Windows Driving inside a tunnel.
Halo 2 Windows Turning invisible.
Halo 2 Xbox The sniper rifle is a great weapon for headshots.

Promo Images

Halo 2 Wallpaper Desert Brigade
Halo 2 Screenshot
Halo 2 Screenshot
Halo 2 Screenshot


Alternate Titles

  • "最後一戰 2" -- Traditional Chinese spelling
  • "光晕2" -- Simplified Chinese spelling
  • "Halo 2 Vista" -- Informal Windows title

Part of the Following Groups

User Reviews

Overblown follow up Xbox kieran kelly (3)
Fantastic but doesn't have the impact of Halo Xbox MegaMegaMan (2285)
And this is supposed to convince us to buy Vista? Windows dreamstealer (146)
O.k, I lied, I love this game. Xbox AkibaTechno (254)
The most anticipated game of all time! Xbox Chase Bowen (39)
The "Halo" part is extremely good; the "2" part is badly designed Windows Pagen HD (156)
Everything you could want and then some Xbox Baza (1905)

Critic Reviews

AceGamez Xbox 2004 10 out of 10 100
Gameplanet Xbox Nov 16, 2004 5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars5 Stars 100
Daily Game Xbox Nov 12, 2004 9.8 out of 10 98
Worth Playing Xbox Nov 10, 2004 9.6 out of 10 96
GameCell UK Xbox 2005 9 out of 10 90
Christ Centered Gamer / Christ Centered Game Reviews Xbox Jun 01, 2005 90 out of 100 90
Game Chronicles Xbox Jan 01, 2005 8.9 out of 10 89
Playfuls Windows May 31, 2007 8.1 out of 10 81 Windows Jun 12, 2007 5 out of 10 50
FZ Windows Jun 03, 2007 2 Stars2 Stars2 Stars2 Stars2 Stars 40


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1001 Video Games

Halo 2 appears in the book 1001 Video Games You Must Play Before You Die by General Editor Tony Mott.


Since its release in November of 2004 Halo 2 has been plagued with many forms of cheating. It started with gamers discovering that if they pushed the "standby" button on their modem it would allow them to move about the game doing anything while everything else was frozen. Later on the "Dummy Glitch" was discovered where players could turn invisible and capture a flag without the opposing team even knowing. In April 2005 Bungie released a patch that completely got rid of the Dummy Glitch and made it so that using standby was much harder and only a small percentage of modems can still use it to manipulate the game. All seemed well but unfortunately in June 2005 people with Mod Chips in their Xbox found out that because the downloaded content maps were stored on the Xbox hard drive rather than the disc that it was possible to hack them and use special cheats in the game. Examples of these cheats are the "Super bounce", Super speed, Rapid fire, Needlers that act as rockets, auto aim snipers, and many others. Most of these issues were eventually dealt with through patches.


  • The development team included 70 people.
  • Microsoft lawyers forced Bungie Studio to change the name of the alien antagonist because it carried Muslim overtones.
  • Contains 17,000 lines of combat dialog.
  • Just like in the first Halo, Halo 2 also has a weird enemy that's been hidden in the game's code. It's called the Juggernaut and it can only be found using a modchip. It looks much like the Engineers from the first Halo, except it looks more like a flood. It just floats around.

Leaked Copy

On Wednesday, 13 October 2004, a pirated copy of of the game leaked out to the public, and quickly spread on peer-to-peer networks and IRC.


  • The hippo heads that appeared on the shotgun shells in the first Halo are visible on the walls in the map "Headlong".
  • The Halo maps "Blood Gulch" and "Battle Creek" return in this game under the new names "Coagulation" and "Beaver Creek".


  • In the US and Canada alone, 2.4 million copies of the game were sold in the first 24 hours of its release. That averages out to roughly 27 copies a second.
  • Had 1.5 Million preorders before its release, making it an XBox "Platinum Hit" months before it was even released.


The game's soundtrack includes contributions from legendary guitar legend and G3 member Steve Vai, who performs most guitar riffs in the game and did the main theme. You can find his work in the Halo 2 , Vol. 1 Soundtrack CD, which includes all of the orchestral and incidental music in the game.


Right at the end of the game there's a grunt that doesn't do anything, its just like the grunt from the first game except it says: "I wish that food nipple was waiting for me at the starship, cos man have I worked up a big grunty thirst"


The largest trailer for this game was released in movie theaters. Near the end of this trailer, the usual URL is replaced with "" for a moment. If someone goes to the website, they encountered a website which seemed to be under the control of a Halo-type artificial intelligence. This website continues to be changed, telling a multifaceted story which many believe explain how the Covenant find Earth in Halo 2.


  • 4Players
    • 2004 – Best Console Multiplayer Game of the Year
    • 2007 – #3 Biggest Disappointment of the Year
  • GameSpy
    • 2004 – Game of the Year
    • 2004 – Xbox Game of the Year
    • 2004 – Xbox Shooter of the Year
    • 2004 – Xbox Game of the Year (Readers' Vote)
    • 2004 - Best Use of Xbox Live of the Year
    • 2004 - Best and Worst Ending of the Year (Xbox)
  • Golden Joystick Awards
    • 2004 - Runner up to Grand Theft Auto: San Andreas as Most Wanted Game for Xmas
    • 2004 - Runner up to Sonig the Hedgehog as Ultimate Gaming Hero (for Master Chief)
    • 2005 - Xbox Game of the Year
Information also contributed by ~~, Tiago Jaques, MegaMegaMan, piltdown man and Zovni

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Contributed to by Terok Nor (32119) and Baza (1905)
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