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The Type-26 Anti-Infantry Stationary Gun, abbreviated as Type-26 ASG and known as the Shade, is the Covenant's standard stationary gun turret and anti-infantry weapons platform.
Design and Operation
The Shade is a Covenant stationary gun, commonly operated by Unggoy. The Shade gun fires two bolts of (three in Halo: Combat Evolved) slow moving, high powered plasma encased in magnetic fields. The accuracy of a Shade's weapon is fairly low, as the bolts of plasma fired can hit anywhere within the aiming reticule.
Since the Shade is designed with infantry combat in mind, it is highly effective against Unggoy and Kig-yar, and has exhibited limited effectiveness against Sangheili (especially at dropping their shields). However, due to their high intelligence, Sangheili will often find cover and escape the Shade's range of fire. On this same note, the bolts fired lack the required punch to damage Mgalekgolo, whose armor and combat shield can withstand most Covenant and UNSC small firearms, causing the plasma bolts to have little to no effect on them.
The Shade offers a wide field of fire and a 360 degree traversal mount. The Covenant use the Shade's field of fire to their advantage and place them at strategic points where they can do the most damage. It is highly effective at combating light infantry, has shown good defense against light vehicles such as the Ghost, and in desperate situations, can serve as anti-aircraft defense, requiring only a few direct hits to destroy a Banshee.
As with its recognizable human counterpart, the Shade is very effective against both enemy ground forces and light vehicles. Some of its advantages over its human counterpart are that the plasma bolts are accurate and effective at longer distances and it is easier to see where shots are actually going than it is with the HMG’s tracer rounds.
As with the human counterpart, the player will be exposed to enemy fire. While it is useful against enemies in light vehicles, this is not a weapon of choice when facing an enemy armored vehicle. Also, as is the case with the HMG, players are unprotected from the rear, although this is lessened by the ability to completely rotate the turret. Additionally, the Halo 3's version of the Shade has an extremely slow turning rate, making it a detriment to the user.
There are four models encountered so far in the Halo universe.
Shade (Halo: Combat Evolved and Halo Wars)
The Shade was first seen in the E3 demo atop a Spectre and made its first gameplay appearance in Halo: Combat Evolved's Template:Levelname. The Shade also makes an appearance in Halo Wars and is identical to the Halo: Combat Evolved Shade.
The Shade in Halo: Combat Evolved and Halo Wars consists of a sturdy base of three legs and a floating, mobile, turret-like seat with control systems for its "nozzle".
Shade (Halo 2)
The Shade returned in Halo 2, and is referred to as the Shielded Plasma Cannon. Similar to the ones in Halo: Combat Evolved, this turret fires slow moving red plasma bolts. To protect the gunner, this turret is equipped with an energy shield, similar to the Kig-yar Point Defense Gauntlet. These turrets are featured at the beginning of Template:Levelname.
The turret on the Shadow is very similar in appearance to the Shade in Halo: Combat Evolved. In addition, these turrets seem to be more powerful than the standard Shade in Halo 2, and offer more protection as they are fixed to the armored personnel carrier and, as such, are mobile. The rate of fire is also considerably faster by as much as three times.
Shade (Halo 3)
The Shade returned in Halo 3 and had major visual and technical updates from its predecessors; the Shade now is in the shape of a ball-turret, has a higher rate of fire, and provides excellent front and side protection for the gunner. Like all Shades that have appeared in previous games, it is elevated on a small gravity lift that hovers the turret in the air, and so has a full 360 degree field of view.
The Shade is seen in the Halo 3 campaign missions Template:Levelname, Template:Levelname, and Template:Levelname. Interestingly, the Shade's aiming reticule was similar to a Needler's, except with a circle of lines at the center. The Shade was in multiplayer only in Halo 3 Epsilon, as it was removed from the final version, even in Forge.
Shade (Halo 3: ODST)
In Halo 3: ODST, the Shade seems to rotate quicker than it did in Halo 3. It is also worth noting that in Halo 3: ODST, the Shade lacks a plate of armor in the top middle, in between its guns, exposing the operator to enemy snipers.
The Shades are not found in the hub world in the game, but are often present during campaign missions set earlier. Many are set up in the Uplift Nature Reserve, where the Prophet of Regret's Assault Carrier had formerly been docked. Others can be found in the city during Mickey's journey through the city center to link up with Dutch, again on the rooftops of the New Mombasa Police Department Headquarters, and during the ODST's withdraw across the Coastal Highway. It does not appear on any Firefight map.
- Heavy weapons, vehicles or grenades are perfect to get rid of Shades.
- In Halo 3: ODST, Automags and snipers can be used to kill the gunner if no heavy weapons can be found.
- Ramming it with any vehicle at speed is an instant kill.
- In Halo 3 if you shoot a Shade from a distance and in the middle between the two pieces that jut out, the Grunt inside it might jump out.
- In Halo 3, if you stand right in front of the turret, in between the guns, the Grunt inside will not turn the turret to make you slide in front of it, making you a harder target.
- In Halo 3 as well as in Halo 3: ODST, you can knock the Shade off its hinges by ramming it with a vehicle (even when moving as slow as you can, as long as you are moving, it will always destroy the Shade), meleeing it, or shooting it, though the previous method takes a long time without explosives.
- A fully charged Plasma Pistol bolt in Halo 3 can prevent the turret from turning. Take advantage of that.
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- Buddy up. While this is good advice in any situation, here it is very true as your rear is completely unprotected. Having a teammate nearby to cover your blind side greatly improves your effectiveness.
- Know when to bail out. If you see an enemy tank turning its gun towards you, it is typically a good idea to find some better cover until it moves on, or simply abandon the Shade.
- Find an explosive to throw at them. A tank, rocket, or Gauss round will do the trick. If you are close by and on foot, try sticking them with a plasma grenade.
- Find a scoped weapon. A Battle Rifle, Covenant Carbine, Sniper Rifle, or Beam Rifle will let you take them out with head shots from farther out then they can see you. Of course, if they have a teammate guiding their fire then it would be advisable to eliminate the spotter first and then the gunner.
- For the Shade in Halo: Combat Evolved, you can simply walk right in front of the turret at point blank range as the Grunt AI will typically cease fire and swivel to focus on the player. Keep in mind that the player can still be killed by collision damage, i.e. hit by the rotating turret mount. This tactic is useless in multiplayer.
- Keep circling the turret until you find a part where the gunner's body is more exposed and then open fire.
- Do not charge at it openly as it can bottleneck you on certain locales.
- The Shade in Halo: Combat Evolved was originally intended to be movable, explaining why it has actual legs. However, it looked unrealistic, so the feature was canceled, although the animation is still there.
- The Power Drain and an overcharged Plasma Pistol shot cannot disable the Shade, though you can still see the electric blue sparks on it when is hit with either of the weapons.
- The Shade does not appear in any Halo 3 Multiplayer map. That is to say, it cannot be used in Multiplayer without modding. Tags for the Shade do exist in several maps, however, including Snowbound and Guardian. As with most normally-inaccessible Forge Objects, the Shade has no name, cost, or maximum limit, and it does not respawn.
- ↑ Halo Encyclopedia, page 327
- ↑ Halo 3: ODST, Template:Levelname
- ↑ YouTube: Halo 3 mods for download
- ↑ YouTube: Halo 3 modded map pack (0:13)
- ↑ YouTube: Halo 3 Modded Map - Abyss
- ↑ YouTube: 150 Halo 3 Modded Maps for Download (0:23)