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A design pattern is a set of instructions which details how to create a particular piece of machinery or equipment. Before its dissolution, the Covenant used design patterns as templates from which to create starships, vehicles and weapons, by feeding the instructions into the nanomachines that typically construct their equipment.[1] Equipment produced with a particular design pattern is often referred to by that pattern, as if it were a designation. For example, the Truth and Reconciliation is known as a Ket-pattern battlecruiser.

Many design patterns were developed using analysis of Forerunner devices. However, modification of such patterns was heavily restricted and scrutinised by San'Shyuum bureaucrats, as any design pattern based off of Forerunner technology was considered to be the work of the Covenant's gods. As a result, following the downfall of the Covenant, the sudden lack of such strict oversight allowed for many advancements to be made in weapon and vehicle design.[1][2][3]

Occasionally, design patterns are known to "mutate", which causes them to produce a different product than what was intended. Almost without exception, mutations of design patterns are simply deleted, and the product is recycled. Nevertheless, in some extremely rare cases, so-called "stable mutations" can occur, where the mutated product is still useful and so the design pattern is put into more common usage. The Zanar-pattern light cruiser is one such example; its design pattern was originally a stable mutation of the Elefen and Ket design patterns.[4]

Known design patternsEdit


Vehicle-mounted weaponryEdit

Ship-mounted weaponryEdit

Beam lasersEdit
Excavation beamsEdit
Plasma beam emittersEdit
Plasma bombardment mortarEdit
Plasma cannonsEdit
Plasma lancesEdit
Plasma torpedo silosEdit
Pulse lasersEdit




Drop podsEdit


Blockade runnersEdit
Support shipsEdit


Ship componentsEdit

Energy shield generatorsEdit
Slipspace drivesEdit


Field equipmentEdit

Plasma batteriesEdit
Supply casesEdit


  • It is possible that the notion of a design pattern is derived from the Forerunner design seed technology which served a similar purpose: encoding instructions for the mass replication of machinery.[1]



  1. 1.0 1.1 1.2 Halo: Warfleet – An Illustrated Guide to the Spacecraft of Halo - Glossary, Page 90
  2. Halo Waypoint - Canon Fodder, Designs of the Times
  3. Halo Waypoint - Canon Fodder, Armory Amore
  4. Halo: Warfleet – An Illustrated Guide to the Spacecraft of Halo - Covenant Sphere, Page 72
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