10 Best Halo maps of all time - Dexerto
Halo

10 Best Halo maps of all time

Published: 22/Oct/2021 17:40

by Sam Smith

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Choosing the ten best Halo maps of all time is a truly daunting task. The series has had some amazing maps to choose from over the years, but we’ve managed to settle on our top ten.

Many of the best Halo maps have aged like a fine wine. This is why the most popular ones return with each new entry in the saga. While the original Halo Trilogy arguably has the best and most iconic maps, Halo Reach and the Reclaimer Saga have also added some classics to the collection.

With Halo Infinite nearly upon us, we thought now would be an excellent time to pick the best Halo maps from across the series. Of course, some maps have returned again and again, so we’re mostly concerned with the first time that particular map appeared.

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We’ve drawn from all of the games in the main Halo series to make our list fair and varied. Otherwise, it would simply be a collection of maps from Halo 1 and 2. Therefore we’ve made sure Halo Reach, 4 and 5 are also represented.

Master Chief collection art

10. Truth (Halo 5)

The Truth map is the most celebrated map in Halo 5. Most of Halo 4 and 5’s maps struggled to compete against the more iconic maps of the earlier Halo games, but the Truth map managed to stand out and remains memorable to this day.

The map is set onboard the Covenant ship Undiminished Entelechy which gives it an old-school Halo feel. Free-For-All games are recommended on this map, as the arena’s hiding places help make combat tense and challenging.

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9. Exile (Halo 4)

Halo 4’s maps struggled to match up to Halo 1,2, and 3 in many ways, but that cannot be said of the Exile map. This offered a range of vehicles for players to use and a mixture of inside and outside areas that kept gameplay fresh and varied.

Most game modes worked well on this map, but Domination and Extraction were most suited to the terrain and overall layout. Although Slayer can also be a lot of fun.

8. Guardian (Halo 3)

Halo map Guardian
343 Industries
The Guardian map takes some serious skill to master.

The Guardian map in Halo 3 was one of the best in the game. While not the largest, it was a map that allowed players to jump right into the action. This was a map where hiding was next to impossible, so players needed to survive by using their wits and skills.

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While Slayer and SWAT work well on this map, truly exceptional players relished the opportunity to try King of the Hill. This is a map that separates the Spartans from the Marines.

7. Sword Base (Halo Reach)

Halo Reach is best known for its incredible and hard-hitting single-player campaign, but it also had some memorable maps. Sword Base is the one that stands out the most. The map is taken straight from the game’s campaign and manages to capture the same hectic feel in multiplayer.

SWAT matches are the most fun here, as teams can battle over the top of the base to gain an advantage over other players. The team that holds the higher ground has a better chance of victory, so the fun here is beating the opposing team to this position, then defending it.

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6. Battle Creek (Halo CE)

Battle Creek was one of the smallest but most celebrated maps in the original Halo and its remaster in the Master Chief Collection. Those who’ve experienced it will remember it well and many Halo players cut their teeth on this map.

Slayer and Capture the flag were probably the most popular match modes. But this map is mostly remembered for the little quirks and habits players developed. Who didn’t get a kick out of throwing grenades through those little windows and watching the carnage unfold.

5. Ivory Tower (Halo 2)

Halo ivory tower map
343 Industries
The Ivory Tower map has some tense tactical gameplay.

The Ivory Tower in Halo 2 is one of the classic Halo maps. The décor reminded us of Goldeneye’s Temple level on the N64 when we first played it. At the time, we had no idea the map would one day become as iconic as that one.

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SWAT matches were the best ones to pick here, as the small map felt claustrophobic, and players had to stay on alert at all times. The moment we let our guard down was the moment someone would blast us with a needler. Flying off the airlifts was also great fun, but usually ended in death.

4. The Pit (Halo 3)

Many Halo 3 players will tell you that The Pit was their favorite Halo map. It’s certainly one lots of players remember and refer to. Players would spawn and run to the sniping points before other players. This created some memorable multiplayer moments and cemented The Pit as one of the best Halo maps of all time.

The Pit was perfectly symmetrical which made it work well for Team Slayer or other team-based matches. But Lone Wolves was also a popular choice for players who wanted to test their metal against other Spartan warriors.

3. Ascension (Halo 2)

We really struggled to pick our top 3 Halo maps, but Ascension was always going to be in there. The map was called Ascension due to the two huge towers it featured. Many players would rush to the top to make use of the vantage point and turrets. However, running to the towers meant that there was usually someone already shooting at you, and for those doing the shooting, it was only ever a matter of time until someone took your place.

It’s hard to say which matches worked best on the Ascension map, as they were all fun. But if we had to choose, we’d pick Slayer or King of the Hill. However, team games were also excellent. It’s just too hard to choose!

2. Lockout (Halo 2)

The Lockout map was different from Ascension in nearly every way, but just as iconic, if not more so, which is why it scores slightly higher. Lockout is a small map and didn’t take long for players to memorize its layout. The only issue? Everyone else had too.

Survival came down to skill and luck as even the map itself seemed to want you dead as pitfalls were an ever-present threat, as was someone super bouncing behind you at any given time. The map also became known for PvP duels to the death between surviving players, the map lending itself well to cat and mouse style play.

1. The best Halo map: Blood Gulch (Halo CE)

Blood Gulch from halo 1
343 Industries
Blood Gulch is the most iconic Halo map of all time.

It’s impossible to pick any other map than Blood Gulch for the best Halo map of all time. It’s simply iconic and is often the first map anyone thinks of when Halo multiplayer is brought up. It was also the first map many people ever saw when they played Halo for the first time.

Halo is often credited for being a significant milestone in the first-person-shooter genre, especially when it comes to multiplayer and Blood Gulch is a huge part of this. If Halo is one of the most ground-breaking and influential multiplayer games of all time, then Blood Gulch is a contender for one of the most significant multiplayer maps of all time.

Blood Gulch is just the perfect Halo map, it has vehicles, weapons and was just the right size to make gameplay fluid and tense. Blood Gulch has continued to be featured in Halo multiplayer since its debut, and that’s because players still can’t get enough of it.