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Halo Reach: Mission 9 The Pillar of Autumn Guide

A list of general tactics to use for the legendary difficulty, as well as level specific tips that will help minimize or skip the most difficult parts of the game.

General Tactics

  • On missions where you have Noble team allies, always let them push up in front of you and grab most of the attention. They can’t die, so don’t feel too bad.
  • Abuse the noob combo. Always carry a Plasma Pistol unless I specify otherwise. There’s no reason not to, and you’ll just be making things harder for yourself by not doing it. And always carry a weapon capable of an instant headshot kill in your other slot. That means a DMR, Needle rifle, Magnum, or hell, a Sniper Rifle. Whenever you encounter an Elite, dip behind the nearest cover, charge your Plasma Pistol, pop out and shoot them, then quickly switch to your headshot weapon and tap them once on the head. If you don’t use this combo, you’ll be wasting ammo and time on Elites, both of which are valuable on legendary.
  • Use headshot weapons for all the normal infantry. Tap grunts on the head once or twice and they die. Always aim for the exposed hand on the left of a Jackal shield, then tap them on the head while they’re reeling. Optimally, this means that you’ll be using 1-2 rounds on Grunts and 2 rounds on Jackals.
  • Find a piece of cover and stay back. More times than not, there’s no reason to push in. You can almost always take out most of the enemies from a safe distance with your precision weapons.
  • Brutes are hilariously weak, and you should consider replacing the Plasma Pistol with the Needler and the DMR with the Needle Rifle on areas where they’re the dominant enemy. That means all of Exodus, the hospital in New Alexandria, and the final wave defense segment in Pillar of Autumn. Since they’re mostly unshielded, you can kill one with 6 Needler rounds or three body shots with the Needle Rifle. Note that the DMR tends to take 1-2 headshots to pop their helmet off, and 1 more headshot to kill. The Needle Rifle is just as efficient except you need to aim a whole lot less.
  • Grab the drop shield when you can, and use sprint otherwise. Other than some very niche situations, there’s very little reason to use the other abilities.
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Mission 9: The Pillar of Autumn

  • This is a complicated level and I’m going to be using videos a lot more, because some parts are just way too confusing to describe in writing. In the very beginning, wait for the Elite on the right side of the clearing to turn around, then hug the right wall and sprint ahead to the shack. Inside, grab the DMR and rocket, then hop on a mongoose and gun it.
  • Wait a bit in the cave before the jump. If you gun it like mad, the Phantom outside will gun you down. You need to wait for it to pass.
  • After the jump, use your DMR take out the two marksmen on the floating platform and the gunner on the Wraith all the way in the back. A random Wraith shot may take you out every once in a while, but don’t stress about it too much. Once you’ve done that, hug the right wall and use the cover to get close and board the Wraith. You want to completely kill this one, so punch it until it’s dead.
  • Watch out for any Needle Rifles and grab them and their ammo. You’ll want to keep a Needle Rifle in your inventory this entire mission.
  • Once you reach the Boneyard, there’s a route you can take to skip over every single enemy.
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  • There’s a skip you can do to not fight three Repeater elites and two hunters.

  • Once you reach the final area, be sure to activate the hidden DMR cache. It may have despawned and it’s still possible to finish the level without it, but it’s fantastic to have around.

  • This is a Brute only wave defense. This is why you kept your Needle Ridle with you all this time. You can murder normal brutes with it. IF you activated the DMR cache, you can use a DMR to clear out the normal infantry to preserve ammo.
  • Once the second wave of Brutes comes in, you’ll need to drop the DMR for a Plasma Pistol. There will be three Brute Chieftains rushing you, all with shields. Be sure to pop their shields with an overcharge shot and do the standard three body needle shot. Same for the third and final wave
  • The final room of the campaign is incredibly difficult, mostly due to the engineer floating around. With it around, you can’t noob combo the Elites and they’ll maul you to death instantly. There are a few LASO tricks you can utilize, but I stuck with simply finding openings to murder the engineer with a DMR before noob comboing the rest of the room. If you want to see the more reliable LASO strategies, you can either continue watching that Nak3d Eli video or just…google it.
  • The final MAC gun segment is based on a timer. Get in it and hop out immediately. Go hide under the stairs right under it. There will be swarms of Phantoms coming and you likely can’t wipe them out faster than they can shoot you dead. When you hear Keyes yelling “Fire, Lieutenant”, then you’ll want to hop out, get in the gun, and shoot it once at the ship to get your achievement. They won’t have enough time to kill you (hopefully).
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Written by Klinestife

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