Halo Alpha
Halo Alpha


Were you looking for the Orbital Defense Platform, or the achievement in Halo 2 Vista?

Defend the station's MAC gun from Covenant boarders.

Cairo Station is the third campaign level of Halo 2, taking place in Earth's orbit on the Cairo Station. John-117 and UNSC Marines fight against boarding Covenant troops culminating in a battle over a Sangheili-guarded bomb intended to destroy the station. This is the first level in which enemies are encountered that you can fight.


{Cutscene} ({Anniversary})

John-117 and Sgt. Maj. Johnson step from the tram into a crowd of cheering Marines, robot cameras hover around.

  • John-117: "You told me there wouldn't be any cameras."
  • Sergeant Major Johnson: "And you told me you were gonna wear something nice! Folks need heroes, Chief. To give 'em hope. (raises cap, adjusts his hair, puts cap back on) So smile, would ya? While we still got something to smile about!"

Johnson and John-117 walk to the end of the room, as the Bridge's blast doors open up. Two UNSC Navy officers stand at attention, salute Chief and Johnson, and step aside to allow them entry to the Bridge as the doors open.

The view changes to High Charity, where Tartarus and two of his Jiralhanae walk the Sangheili Commander, Thel 'Vadamee, out onto a ledge on High Charity. Sangheili Honor Guardsman are stationed on either side. Covenant Unggoy, Kig-Yar and Mgalekgolo have gathered on the walkway.

  • Unggoy: "He-re-tic! He-re-tic!"

They reach the ledge, in which we see the stadium seats filled with roaring Covenant aliens, and the Jiralhanae fix the Commander's arms onto floating cuffs.

  • Tartarus: (gleefully) "You've drawn quite a crowd."
  • Thel 'Vadamee: (bitterly) "If they came to hear me beg, they will be disappointed."
  • Tartarus: "Are you sure?"

The entire crowd cheers as energy beams hit 'Vadamee on either side, and he shakes with pain.

The view changes back to the Cairo's bridge, dozens of Naval officers cheer as John-117 and Sergeant Johnson approach Lord Hood at the end.


Spartan-117 and Sergeant Johnson saluting to Lord Hood.

John-117 and Johnson salute to Lord Hood. He returns the gesture.

  • Lord Hood: "Gentlemen, we're lucky to have you back."

An officer whispers to Lord Hood's ear.

Cortana's avatar appears on a nearby holotank.

  • Cortana: "Another whisper, sir, near Io. We have probes en route."
  • Lord Hood: "I apologize, but we're going to have to make this quick."

Lord Hood turns away.

Cortana looks up at John-117 and Johnson.

  • Cortana: "You look nice."
  • John-117: (simultaneously with Johnson) "Thanks."
  • Sergeant Johnson: "Thank you."

John-117 and Johnson look at each other.

Lord Hood picks up a Colonial Cross medal from a red-clothed case containing two other Colonial Cross medals.

Hood places the medal on Johnson's uniform.

The view changes back to High Charity, on Tartarus' face.

  • Tartarus: "...There can be no greater heresy! Let him be an example for all who would break our Covenant!"

The Covenant crowd cheers once more. Tartarus barks an order, and two Jiralhanae grab onto 'Vadamee's now charred armor and pull.

The view once again changes back to Cairo Station, as a young woman joins John-117 and Johnson.

  • Lord Hood: "Commander Miranda Keyes. Your father's actions were in keeping with the highest traditions of military service. His bravery in the face of impossible odds reflects great credit, upon himself, and the UNSC. The Navy has lost one of its best."

Hood hands her the Colonial Cross medal. (In the Anniversary version of this moment, Miranda is seen choking back tears as she is given her father's award posthumously)

The view changes back to High Charity again, where a blackened Sangheili Combat helmet falls to the floor, and the naked 'Vadamee hangs limply from his restraints. A glowing brand rises from the floor behind him, and Tartarus grabs it and strides forward.

Thel 'Vadamee raises his head weakly. Tartarus gives him a fierce look, and presses the brand against the Sangheili's chest with malice. The tortured Thel 'Vadamee fights the pain but gives in and screams.

The view once more changes to Cairo Station, where alarms start to sound as General Quarters and Alert Condition Red are sounded.

  • Cortana: "Slipspace ruptures directly off our battle cluster."
  • Lord Hood: "Show me."

Images of Covenant ships appears on the main screen of the Bridge.

  • Cortana: "Fifteen Covenant capital ships holding position just outside the kill zone."

The screen shows UNSC ships approaching the Covenant fleet.

  • Lord Hood: "Negative, Admiral. Form a defensive perimeter around the cluster." (to Miranda Keyes) "Commander, get to your ship, link up with the fleet."

Keyes salutes.

  • Commander Keyes: "Yes, sir." (leaves)
  • Lord Hood: "You have the MAC gun, Cortana. As soon as they come in range, open up."
  • Cortana: "Gladly."

Cortana's avatar disappears.

  • Lord Hood: "Something's not right... The fleet that destroyed Reach was fifty times this size."

An Officer faces Lord Hood from his console on one of the various levels of the Bridge.

  • Officer: (panicked) "Sir, additional contacts. Boarding crafts and lots of 'em!"

The view shifts back to the screen.

  • Lord Hood: "They're going to try to take our MAC guns offline, give their capital ships a straight shot at Earth. (Looks to John-117) Master Chief, defend this station!"
  • John-117: "Yes, sir." (to Johnson) "I need a weapon."
  • Sergeant Johnson: "Right this way."

Johnson and John-117 leave the bridge, as Lord Hood turns back to his command station. Through the bay windows looking up to the MAC cannon, the fleet turns to engage the Covenant attackers as they, and the ODPs, go to battle stations. Longsword fighters hurtle overhead trailed by Marathon-class cruisers.


  • Cairo Defense Coordinator (Loudspeaker): "Alert! Boarders inbound"
  • Cairo Defense Coordinator (Loudspeaker): "All hands report to battle stations. This is not a drill. I repeat, this is not a drill!"
  • Sergeant Johnson (COM): "How's it going, Malta?"
  • Malta Defense Coordinator (COM): "Stand-by... they're latched! Check your targets and watch the crossfires."
  • Malta Defense Coordinator (COM): "They're in standard formation: little bastards up front, big ones in back... Good luck, Cairo."

Outside, a Covenant Boarding Craft latches onto the hull, causing the station to shake. Weapons fire is soon heard from outside the doorway.

  • Sergeant Johnson: "I need a field of fire on that bulkhead. As soon as that door opens, let 'em have it!"

The Marines take up position around a sealed bulkhead and take aim. Johnson sets up a stationary gun turret. A bright light and crackling noise, like a welding torch, comes from the center of the door, and is soon followed by an explosion, where the door explodes and Covenant intruders appear.

Home Field Advantage[]

  • Lord Hood (COM): "Find the boarders' point of entry, Chief. Cut them off at the source."

(If Chief hesitates at any point after hearing this and lingers in one spot for a while...)

  • Lord Hood (COM): "Chief, if we don't take out their boarding craft, they'll just keep sending reinforcements."
  • Cairo Defense Coordinator (Loudspeaker): "This is not a drill. I repeat, this is not a drill."


  • Cairo Defense Coordinator (Loudspeaker): "Boarders in Habitat Alpha."


  • Cairo Defense Coordinator (Loudspeaker): "Brace for impact!"

A loud clang is soon heard as a Boarding Craft attaches to Cairo station


  • Cairo Defense Coordinator (Loudspeaker): "I need a squad in Habitat Alpha, ASAP!"


  • Cairo Defense Coordinator (Loudspeaker): "We've got boarders in the port Pelican bays!"

Once John-117 finishes killing all Covenant borders in the first Hangar bay, Covenant Boarding Crafts are seen through the windows rapidly leaving Malta Station.

  • Cortana (COM): "Malta, what's your status, over?"
  • Malta Defense Coordinator (COM): "I don't believe it! They're retreating, we won!"

The Malta Station suddenly detonates in a huge ball of fire, the barrel of the MAC gun breaking loose and tumbling away

  • Private Dubbo: "This is bad, real bad!"

The hangar bay is soon attacked by a new wave of Covenant from another hangar bay.

  • Cairo Defense Coordinator (Loudspeaker): "Alert! Hostiles have secured the port MAC bays."


  • Cairo Defense Coordinator (Loudspeaker): "Security Station 4 is under attack."

Once John-117 finishes killing all the intruders in the second Hangar bay, Covenant Boarding Crafts are seen through the windows retreating, only this time, from the Athens Station.

  • Private Dubbo: "Uh oh! Hey, they're leaving the Athens!"

The Athens detonates and spins apart, just like the Malta.

  • Lord Hood (COM): "Cortana, assessment!"
  • Cortana (COM): "That explosion came from inside the Athens. Same as the Malta. The Covenant must have brought something with them. A bomb."
  • Lord Hood (COM): "Then they sure as hell brought one here. Chief, find it."

Priority Shift[]

If the player decides to stall for awhile

  • Cortana: "Chief, we don't have much time."
  • Cortana: "Not a lot of time on the clock, Chief!"
  • Cortana: "Where are you?! The bomb is right here!"
  • Cortana: "The clock's tickin' Chief, get down here."
  • Cortana: Chief, over here, next to the bomb!"
  • Cortana: "Ask yourself this question right now: Is doing what I am right now helping Cortana stop this station from blowing into tiny, tiny bits?"
  • Cortana: "Just a friendly reminder: Bomb."
  • Cortana: "If this thing goes off, I am NEVER talking to you again."

John takes a route under the hangar bay, and encounters another group of Covenant.

  • Cairo Defense Coordinator (Loudspeaker): "All non-combat personnel to pressure zones."

As John returns upstairs to the armory, he finds the Master Gunnery Sergeant fighting a pair of Sangheili, armed with a Shotgun. Exactly what he says to them differs depending on what the difficulty level is set to.

  • Master Gunnery Sergeant (Easy):”Get the hell out of my armory, split-lip!"


  • Master Gunnery Sergeant (Anniversary):”Chief, get the hell out of my Armory.”
  • Master Gunnery Sergeant (Normal): "Just what this place needed, a couple of real live targets!"
  • Master Gunnery Sergeant (Heroic): "Tell your friends I got enough ammo for all of 'ya!"
  • Master Gunnery Sergeant (Legendary): "Come on, now! Is that a weapon or a flashlight?"

The Master Gunnery Sergeant is hit by bolts of plasma and dies.

  • Cairo Defense Coordinator (Loudspeaker): "Fireteams to Habitat Delta."


  • Cairo Defense Coordinator (Loudspeaker): "Hang on, everyone!"

Another vibration occurs, as another Boarding Craft is attached


  • Cairo Defense Coordinator (Loudspeaker): "Hostiles have taken Security Station 1!"


  • Cairo Defense Coordinator (Loudspeaker): "I need a squad in Habitat Delta!"

John-117 comes to a hallway where Keyes, Johnson, and a couple of officers are engaged in a firefight outside the gangway to the In Amber Clad.

  • Sergeant Johnson: "Come on, Chief, this way!"
  • Commander Keyes: "I was almost on board when they showed up."
  • Sergeant Johnson: "Don't worry, ma'am, we're on it."

Once they clear the area

  • Commander Keyes: "Thanks, Chief. I owe you one."
  • Sergeant Johnson: "Get going. I'll cover the Commander."
  • Cairo Defense Coordinator (Loudspeaker): "Fireteams to Terminal 2."

Authorized Personnel Only[]

John-117 exits the station through an airlock and fights several Sangheili Rangers in the vacuum of space.

  • Cortana (COM): "Sir, boarders have breached the fire control center. They have a bomb."
  • Lord Hood (COM): "Can you defuse it?"
  • Cortana (COM): "Yes, but I'll need the Chief's help to make contact with the detonator."
  • Lord Hood (COM): "Chief, get to the bomb, double time! Cortana, prioritize targets and fire at will."

John-117 enters back into the Cairo Station, where he is met by Marines near a cargo container, and soon the Yanme'e appear.

  • Fleet Admiral Harper (COM): "First Echelon, you're with me, blanket those cruisers, take ‘em out one by one. Second Echelon, keep those carriers busy."
  • Cortana (COM): "Registering all hostile vessels inside the kill zone. Thirteen cruisers, two assault carriers. I'm going loud!"

(Cortana opens fire with the Cairo MAC gun)


  • Cairo Defense Coordinator (Loudspeaker): "All non-combat personnel report to evacuation stations!"

As John-117 rides the elevator platform down to the airlock.

  • Fleet Admiral Harper (COM): "The carriers are breaking through, Sir! They're heading straight for the Cairo!"
  • Lord Hood (COM): "Cortana! Concentrate your fire on the first carrier. Admiral, do what you can against the second."
  • Fleet Admiral Harper (COM): "Everyone, form up, follow my lead!"

John-117 watches through the window as the lift descends, a massive Covenant Assault Carrier accelerates right past the Cairo and towards Earth, making the entire station shake.

  • Cortana (COM): "The first carrier completely ignored us, Sir! Blew right through the Malta's debris field and headed straight for Earth!"

After crossing the MAC's recoil arm in vacuum, and moving back into the airlock

Return to Sender[]

  • Cortana (COM): "Just so you know, there are quite a few Elites guarding the bomb. You may need to get creative."

The station shakes again. Outside the window, Chief can see the second carrier bypassing the Cairo, following the first carrier down to Earth.

Once John-117 clears the room of Covenant defenses.

{Cutscene} ({Anniversary})

Cortana's holographic avatar appears on a pedestal near the bomb.

  • Cortana: (urgently) "Me. Inside your head. Now."

John-117 touches the pedestal, and Cortana downloads directly into his armor. He steps over to the bomb, and touches the flashing red activation pad at its center. It blinks and turns blue.

  • John-117: "How much time was left?"
  • Cortana: "You don't want to know."
  • Commander Keyes (COM): "Cairo, this is In Amber Clad."

The view changes to the bridge of In Amber Clad. Miranda and Johnson have changed out of their formal attire and Johnson is wearing his UNSC Marine Corps uniform and body armor while Miranda is wearing her naval officer uniform.

  • Commander Keyes: "The carrier's shield is down. I'm in position and ready for immediate assault."

The view goes back to Cairo's bridge, showing Lord Hood alone.

  • Lord Hood: "Negative, Commander. Not against a ship that size. Not on your own."
  • John-117 (COM): "Sir..."

The view changes back to the bay, where John-117 is waiting with one hand on the bomb.

  • John-117: "...Permission to leave the station."

The view returns to Cairo's bridge.

  • Lord Hood: (distractedly) "For what purpose, Master Chief?"
  • John-117 (COM): "To give the Covenant back their bomb."

Hood gives a slight pause to think.

  • Lord Hood: "Permission granted."

In the bay, John-117 grabs the bomb by two of its sharp handles and hauls it across the floor, causing sparks to erupt as it scrapes across the floor. He drags it into an elevator, and rises.

  • Cortana: "I know what you're thinking, and it's crazy."
  • John-117: "So, stay here."
  • Cortana: "Unfortunately for us both... I like crazy."

The elevator reaches an empty Longsword launch bay, and John-117 steps out, watching through the huge bay door. The entire fleet streams down toward Earth, chasing the Covenant ships. A Seraph flies past, pursued by two Longswords. John-117 then steps up to the door's emergency release handle, labeled "EMERGENCY ONLY", which drops down above him.

  • Cortana: "Just one question. What if you miss?"
  • John-117: "I won't."

John-117 pulls down the handle and the bay doors cycle open, the bay decompressing rapidly. Debris lifts off the floor and hurtles into space, and the bomb slowly begins to slide toward the doors, scratching sparks across the floor. John-117 grabs hold of it as it passes, and is pulled out into space.

In free-fall, John-117 descends in the general direction of northern Africa. The first carrier is miles below him, too far to reach. The second carrier passes right below his position, and opens up with a energy projector, narrowly missing him. A cruiser rockets below him, takes an Energy projector round right through its spine, explosions lighting all over its hull. John-117 plummets past it, watches as its engines fail and try to relight themselves.

A pair of Longsword fighters dive past him, and make a strafing run on the carrier. They open fire on the Carrier, and make a staccato beat of fire along the back of the carrier, allowing John-117 to slip through the narrow hole the blasts have created.

The Carrier's center is a huge, open chamber, a massive fusion core casting white light across its inner surface. The carrier has taken a lot of abuse; the far side of the chamber is torn open, showing the Earth outside. John-117 crawls up the bomb, presses its activation panel, and spins around. His legs flex, and he vaults off the bomb, aiming for the split in the carrier's armor.

He plummets from the carrier, straight for Earth, as behind him minor blue explosions flicker up and down the alien warship. A pause, and the entire ship detonates in a huge plasma conflagration.

As John-117 falls towards Africa, a UNSC Frigate passes beneath him, matching trajectories.

Inside In Amber Clad's bridge, Johnson and Keyes watch a tactical display. A thud resounds throughout the ship, and Johnson and Keyes look up.

Johnson looks at Keyes and grins.

  • Sergeant Johnson: "For a brick... he flew pretty good!"
  • Commander Keyes: "Chief, get inside, gear up. We're taking this fight to the surface."

In Amber Clad banks hard and dives towards the Earth's atmosphere, and a massive, gray city along the East African coast comes into view. Fires and explosions can be seen already within the city, indicating it is already besieged by the Covenant.

Level ends.


Icon Name Description Value
HTMCC AchievementArt BombSquad Bomb Squad Beat the par score on Cairo Station. 10G
0Dc8P2NhHTMCC AchievementArt CairoStation Cairo Station Complete Cairo Station. 30 (Vista)

10G (MCC)

HTMCC AchievementArt Curious Curious Activate Terminal 1 on Cairo Station. 5G
HTMCC AchievementArt Don'tHangarAround Don't Hangar Around Beat the par time on Cairo Station. 10G
HTMCC AchievementArt SkulltakerHalo2Thunderstorm Skulltaker Halo 2: Thunderstorm Find and claim the Thunderstorm skull on Legendary. 5G
HTMCC AchievementArt TheReturnofMegg The Return of Megg She's not picking up. 20G



  • After the first pelican hangar battle and you fight the group after the door blows up, crouch into the pieces of the door and your body will separate.
  • It is possible to get inside of the boarding ships, simply go to the corner of the shield barrier and walk forward and jump, this may take a few times but after a while you should get in. Inside there is only a crate. When you walk out there is another glitch, the enemies that you fought when you entered the room will respawn, be careful, as the enemy will spawn directly behind you.
  • It is possible to reach inaccessible areas in this level.
  • In the sub-level "Return to Sender," it is possible to be pushed through the wall. Simply stand in front of the moving firing pin. You will be pushed forward at an incredible speed directly into the wall. After running into the wall, you will be able to see the wall as it really is: a textured line that is infinitely thin. After seeing this, you will simply "squish" through the wall, and fall to your death to the level below.
  • At the part where Miranda Keyes and Johnson are fighting a group of Covenant, if the Sangheili is an Ultra and you manage to get him to take out a sword, he will endlessly melee Keyes until she goes through the wall. The Sangheili can be made an Ultra if you retrieved Thunderstorm.
  • It is possible to fall below the MAC gun's pump. If you try to jump on the middle of the MAC cannon at the end of the level, it will launch you out of the station and sometimes you will hit an invisible barrier stopping you from getting to the scenery.
  • If you kill the Drones as the elevator is rising, one of their bodies might get caught on the edge of the elevator and look as if it's falling indefinitely.
  • If you melee the Unggoy operating the turrets in the Pelican bay, sometimes their bodies get stuck through the floor and can be seen underneath. This is especially amusing when an Unggoy is hanging down by its hand as it looks as if it is holding on to the bars and hanging down.
  • It is possible to see the outside of a Covenant boarding craft on this level up close. Just before you enter the first elevator, use one of the structures near the edge to jump to a lower ledge, and there is the craft.
  • There is some old dialog where Miranda Keyes would say "Thanks, Chief. I owe you one. Take me now!"
  • When you get to the armory part and you see one of the stair doors is closed, get on top of the door and the door should be going up the ceiling. When the door closes, you will fall through the door and be back to normal instead of dying.
  • It is possible to get into the airlock room John-117 jumps out of. On the chapter "Return to Sender," walk up to where the firing pin shoots forward. Walk up to the front track, and it will move forward. If you are lucky, your body will fall through the floor and down to the airlock below.
  • When you get out side of the Station, it possible to get inside the FFG-142 "In Amber Clad"'s reactors.
  • Right when you begin the level, head down the stairs, and on your right, there will be Johnson's commemorative hat lying on a case; if you melee the case, the hat will be floating about one meter above the ground, just like if the case was still there.
  • Right after killing the Ranger Sangheili for the first time, you can walk to the left of the area you came from instead of walking to the area where you're supposed to go and hop onto a nearby platform which will lead you to getting on top of most closed in areas you have previously walked through (hence on top of the Cairo Station) although it is impossible to get on top of the tower.
  • It is possible to have two Sergeant Johnsons in the same place. The one that appears at the start of the level can be meleed to the area right before "Authorized Personnel Only" where another one is waiting for you. This is easier if you have an Energy Sword because if left alone for any amount of time, he'll run backwards.
  • On the elevator that leads to the bomb room, if you keep running to the diagonal doors you go through when the elevator stops you can see not only the outside of the elevator but the lower half of your body running up against the wall.
  • At the very beginning of the level, unlike in The Armory, it is possible to zoom the HUD while unarmed. However while zooming unarmed the edges of the screen do not darken in the shape of the Mark VI visor like they normally do. Instead the entire screen remains bright. Although the motion sensor disappears, the grenade counters remain visible.
  • If you get to the airlock quickly enough after you save Keyes and Johnson and kill the first wave of enemies (specifically before Keyes says "Thanks Chief. I owe you one."), the second wave of enemies which normally appear (Unggoy and a Sangheili) will not spawn unless you return to Keyes and Johnson. A similar glitch is found in Regret.
  • Occasionally, a female Marine will spawn under the Pelican in the Hangar bay and will be killed as soon as she spawns.
  • While John is outside the station, all sounds save those made by his Mjolnir armour and the voices of the Ranger Sangheili are muffled, reflecting the silent nature of the vacuum of space. This muffling effect is not present, however, when Halo 2 is played on an Xbox 360.
  • After you finish killing everyone in the second Commons room, when you get up to where the covenant turrets are, after killing the party that comes to attack you, you will see a dead marine lying on its stomach behind the three boxes. If you melee it three times, the body will disappear. The same thing happens, on rare occasions, in Quarantine Zone, after you get off the gondola and into the chamber with the flood bodies.


  • While your characters jumping gravity is affected while out in space, the gravity upon grenades and everything else is unaffected. However, if you carry a plasma pistol into the airlock with the dead ODST and then melee to drop the plasma pistol before the atmosphere is restored, it can bounce around the airlock as if there was lessened gravity.
  • Although Sergeant Johnson receives a medal in the ceremony before the mission and it is seen being placed on his chest, on the actual mission, it does not appear on his uniform except for the Purple Heart.
  • Despite Johnson's claim that the MAC platforms are geo-synchronized with their respective cities, if the player looks out of the Cairo's windows, Cairo Station itself is over 1000 miles from Cairo, Egypt; the city it is supposedly geo-synchronized with.
  • When Thel 'Vadamee was bound to the energy cuffs, his elbows were at chest level, while his wrists were at face level. After his armor was removed, his elbow was at face level, and his wrists were above his head.
  • Although the MJOLNIR armor system has only 90 minutes worth of Oxygen, you can stay in vacuum indefinitely.
  • It's possible, when going outside the station through the airlock, to not kill the Unggoy or Sangheili. They will stay alive, even though they are in the vacuum of space.
  • After saving Johnson and Keyes, it is possible to knock them out through the air lock and into the vacuum of space, they still cannot die despite the fact they are not wearing any headgear to help them breathe.
  • If you kill the enemies while in the vacuum of space you can still hear them scream upon death. This is strange since sound cannot travel through space because of the lack of air.

Easter Eggs[]

  • The Thunderstorm Skull is located in this level.
  • Johnson's cigar is also found in this level, but it is put out, unlike in the Armory level, the cigar was lit up and smoke could be seen. You can see this if you find the Thunderstorm Skull on this level.
  • If you complete the mission with the Thunderstorm skull legendary on without getting shot once then, within the bomb room, you will here Lord Hood say "Paging megg..." on the intercom. This will also unlock the achievement The Return of Megg.
  • Also on the chapter "Return to Sender," you can find one surviving Marine. To do this, you must enter the room underneath the firing pin. Walk away from the Sangheili' position, and you should find a lone Marine survivor, armed with a Battle rifle or an SMG. The Marine is a different model every time.
  • At the end of the level, where you have to disarm the bomb, there is a German Shepard's head. After you exit the elevator on the level, hop across the structure in the middle of the room, but be careful of the firing pin for the MAC gun, as it could crush you. After you're across, track backwards until you're at the opposite door. There will be debris to the upper left of you. If you maneuver in such a way, you will be able to see a piece of metal on the ground that looks like a dog's head.
  • in the bomb room, there is a narrow passage that leads to the rear of the room, where a MAC coil may suddenly turn blue. Interestingly, there is a hidden marine standing next to a locker of SMGs, and he never moves at all.
  • On the elevator that leads to the bomb room, if you keep running to the diagonal doors you go through when the elevator stops you can see not only the outside of the elevator but the lower half of your body running up against the wall.
  • If a Marine is killed and falls into the area before the MAC Round storage area, their body will disappear when the loading point is changed.


  • Just like in the first level of Halo: Combat Evolved, there are no Kig-Yar in this level.
  • The Covenant Bomb had seven seconds left before it detonates in the cut scene, despite the fact that it will not detonate. Another reference to Bungie's favorite number, 7.
  • The part where the Chief enters space with the Covenant Bomb was in an early Halo 2 trailer, except it did not feature the bomb. This could be as early as there was going to be a level where the Chief blew up the Covenant ship without the bomb.
  • In the beginning cut scene, Lord Hood says United Earth Space Corps. This seems to be a reference to Marathon, the name of the military branch of the Human government. (In Halo, the military branch is called United Nations Space Command).
  • Athens, Malta and Cairo were all cities involved in the 1985 hijacking of Egyptair Flight 648, which was en route to Cairo from Athens and forced to land in Malta


  • Interestingly, this is the first, last, and only time in the entire Halo series that the shotgun appears in the first level(excluding the tutorial level, armory)
  • This is one of three levels in the Halo series where the player is in vacuum, excluding glitches.
  • During the part where you meet Johnson and Miranda, you can melee attack one of them with you into the airlock where you proceed to the bomb. They will not die from the vacuum and can be strong allies due to their invincibility.
  • Three Stealth Sangheili with Active camouflage are present on the bottom floor of the Armory, two being in the room and one appears in the corridor you came from. (Note that all difficulties permit the player to see them)
  • During this level, you can see Covenant Carriers flying past Cairo Station. You can see one when you're outside near the MAC fire control center and another when if you look out the windows inside the MAC fire control center.
  • The turret that appears in the first Pelican bay is not present on harder difficulties.
  • Originally, Bungie had planned a level after Cairo Station, in which John-117 would land on a Covenant ship, break in, and destroy it from the inside out. This was shown in the Halo 2 Announcement Trailer, when the Chief jumped out of the airlock without the bomb. However, because of deadlines, the level was cut from the final game.[1]
  • On Legendary difficulty, a Zealot can be found not too far into the level.
  • It is possible to see a Sangheili Ultra with a dual-wielded Plasma Rifle and Needler, (Like with others, get too close or shoot him too much, he draws an Energy Sword) on Easy difficulty.
Miranda squint

Miranda scowls at John for injuring her.

  • If you melee or shoot Commander Keyes, she grimaces in pain and glares at you resentfully.
  • In the final fight by the bomb, if you kill the Covenant in the right positions, it's possible for the bomb to move their bodies around while being dragged.
  • In this level, and in others like The Armory or Outskirts, you can see some equipment cases, where there is written information about some UNSC equipment such as Marine helmets or Marine body armor. The information shows their weight and the number of items included in the case.
  • In the room where the bomb is, you can find a Marine hiding in the back from the Covenant.
  • This level features a music piece that unfortunately didn't make it onto either volume of the soundtrack in any form. It is played in the Armory and Commons Area B-01, after you kill the two Sangheili that killed the Master Gunnery Sergeant. This "lost song" reappears on the level Gravemind.
  • You can complete almost all or all (If skilled in jumping) of the level without a weapon. Just keep jumping over weapons on the ground and running past covenant troops to the end and the marine at the back of the bomb room will hopefully kill all the covenant there.
  • In the airlocks at the top and bottom of the elevator platform are three ODST bodies (one at the top, two at the bottom. These are the only ODST's seen in the level. This is also the first appearance of the ODST armor in the Halo Trilogy.
  • The machine gun turret carried by Johnson at the beginning of the level, sometimes will not be usable; although you can order Johnson to stay away from it.
  • This level also contains the only Halo 2 Marine model covered in wounds and blood. He is found in the first Pelican hangar and is usually without a helmet.
  • It is strange that the home fleet took staggering casualties considering Regret's fleet was only of 15 ships.
  • In the room you first get grenades in, there is a terminal. On it, in multiple places, these numbers are on it: 073592 | 397821 | 227625 | 871153 | 471500 | 000692. It is unknown what these numbers mean, but they are possibly a pass code to open the air lock doors in the pelican bay (since that is where the terminals are found).


Halo 2[]

Halo 2: Anniversary[]




  1. Halo 3 Essentials: Disc 2; Halo 2 Cinematics Commentary