Everything We Learned about the Halo 5: Guardians Beta | Beyond Entertainment


The Halo 5: Guardians Multiplayer beta is included with every copy of Halo: The Master Chief Collection and officially kicks off on December 29th. The beta will run for a total of three weeks, ending on January 18th, 2015.

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The beta will feature Sprint as a Spartan Ability:

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This is news a lot of you are going to annoyed with and I seriously can’t blame you. When you load up the beta next month, you will be able to Sprint.

This time around, Sprint is being called a ‘Spartan Ability’ which were previously announced during the E3 2014 reveal. Just like Halo 4, Sprint will be a base player trait, meaning you can use it whenever you want to.

However, Sprint in Halo 5: Guardians is receiving a huge change in an attempt to balance it out. When sprinting, your shields will not recharge – when you stop sprinting, a small timer on the HUD will count down and then your shields will begin to recharge.


The beta will feature ‘Aim Down Sights’:

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Aiming down the sights will be in Halo 5: Guardians. That means that players can now hold the Left Trigger to look down their scope for most weapons including the Battle Rifle, Magnum, Assault Rifle and more.

Before you panic, I’d like to make this absolutely clear – aiming down the sights does not work in Halo like it does in Call of Duty. When you aim down the sights, you retain full movement speed and it essentially works like the zoom function which has been there in every Halo game.


Below is a picture of the Battle Rifle aiming down the sights.

Halo 5 Aim Down Sights

Oh, and when you get shot? You are forced out of scope – just like Halo: CE, Halo 2 and Halo 3.


Descoping will be making a return, flinch will not:

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Halo 4 was the first Halo title to not feature descoping. For those who don’t know what descoping is, it is a mechanic which takes you out of scope when you are shot or take damage. In Halo 4, this feature was replaced with a Flinch mechanic.

In Halo 5: Guardians, players will once again be descoped when shot provided they are aiming down the sights as you can see above. When you are knocked out of scope, you will need to press the ADS button again, however if you are constantly getting shot, you will be repeatedly knocked out of scope.


Spartan Abilities:

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Spartan Abilities are new base player traits which are available for all players. In the beta, there will be a total of seven Spartan Abilities that players will have access to. The coolest part about them is that there are no restrictions, if you wanted to sprint then quickly use thrust out of the way of a grenade, you can do that.



Sprint is now being classed as a Spartan Ability. It works similarly to Halo 4’s version with two pretty important changes. First off, Sprint can now be used for an unlimited duration compared to a few seconds in previous titles. Secondly, your shields will no longer recharge while you are sprinting. This was changed to hopefully to not make Sprint a ‘get out of jail free’ ability again.

When Sprinting, you will eventually reach a maximum speed. When you hit this max speed, you will be able to use the Slide ability, or the Charge ability.


Smart Scope

Smart Scope is what 343 Industries are dubbing the new Aim Down Sights function which works exactly like the Zoom function seen in all previous Halo titles. As mentioned earlier, when shot players will be knocked out of scope meaning they will have to repress the button in order to look down their sights again.

Players will be able to aim down the sights on a lot more weapons in Halo 5: Guardians compared to previous titles. For example, the Assault Rifle will allow you to aim down sights which gives the gun tighter spread. Other weapons like the Battle Rifle, DMR and Magnum will also have the option to aim down the sights.


Thruster Pack

The Thruster Pack makes a grand return in Halo 5: Guardians. The biggest change from Halo 4 is that when you use it, you are no longer forced into third person for the duration of the thrust. Another new feature for the Thruster Pack is that if you are in midair, you can activate it and hover in the air for a short moment. Before you panic, it doesn’t allow you to go any higher than what you already were, similar to the Jetpack from Halo: Reach and Halo 4. You hover for a brief moment before slowly falling.

Players can trigger the hover mechanic by holding the Smart Scope button while in midair. There is an option to turn this off, so you can still aim and fall down like previous Halo titles.


Ground Pound

The Ground Pound allows players to slam themselves into the ground from certain height and cause damage to enemy players near the impact radius. When you go to perform a ground pound, a white circle will be displayed on your screen to indicate where your Spartan is about to slam.

We weren’t really given any specifics on how powerful the Ground Pound is and how close someone needs to be for it to kill them at full shields, but it looks pretty effective. As you can see below, the player kills somebody when they are directly next to the impact zone.



Clamber allows players to quickly climb ledges that would normally be out of reach when you jump towards them. When jumping towards a ledge and you think you’re about to miss it, pressing the Cluster button will grab the ledge and you will pull yourself up.



Sliding is available once players have reached maximum speed. Once you have finished sliding, you will instantly be able to fire your weapon again, essentially allowing you to slide towards someone, shooting them with a Shotgun before continuing on.



Charge is a new way to melee a player. When sprinting at max speed, players can charge into another player to perform an extremely powerful melee attack.

When you have used the Charge ability of someone, you will remove your opponents shield and half of their health which is a little bit stronger than a regular melee attack.


Controller Layout:

Now that you know about all seven Spartan Abilities, it would probably help if you knew how to actually perform them. Below you can find an image of the default controller layout which will be present in the Halo 5: Guardians beta.

Halo 5 Guardians Controller Layout

Similar to other Halo games, Halo 5: Guardians will feature various other control schemes but as of now, this is the only one we know of.


Midship is back… kind of:

When we got our first glimpse of Halo 5: Guardians multiplayer, we were shown a familiar purple map which 343 Industries were calling Midship. Now just looking the map, you could see the similarities but it was honestly much bigger and different than the original. In the beta, this map will be known as Truth.

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Truth is a reimagination of Midship which has clearly been made bigger to compensate for Sprint and all the other Spartan Abilities. You can check out more screenshots of Truth in our screenshots article here.


Watch out for the Crossfire:

The next map we learned about that will be featured in the Halo 5: Guardians beta is known as Crossfire. Many of you may recognize this map from the CG trailer that was shown back at E3 2014 during the Xbox conference.

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Crossfire is specifically designed for a new gametype being introduces into the Halo 5: Guardians beta (and will be one of the three playable gametypes). Breakout is a one-life gametype which pits two-four man teams against each other in a small map. The first team to win five rounds wins the game. You can see more screenshots of Crossfire here.


Take a visit to my Empire:

The third map we now know of is called Empire, the rooftop-type map we saw during the Halo 5: Guardians vidoc a few months back.

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Empire is an outdoor map which features a few close-quarter combat areas and various long range areas, mainly in the middle of the map. Both the Battle Rifle and Assault Rifle will be prevalent throughout matches, with the odd DMR and Sniper rifle kills.

In the beta, players will be able to try out not only the previous three maps but also five more that have yet to be revealed. There is one map which was shown during the ViDoc but we were not told its name.

The return of the LightRifle

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The LightRifle was one of many Forerunner weapons introduced into the Halo sandbox with Halo 4. It was a well received weapon which had its own niche roll in gameplay and I’m happy to confirm this weapon will be making a return for the Halo 5: Guardians multiplayer beta.

In the image above, the middle Spartan in the background is wielding the gun. For those who never got a chance to use the LightRifle – when unscoped, the weapon behaved similar to a Battle Rifle firing three bullets per shot at a slower pace. When scoped in, the weapon would fire a single shot but at a much faster pace.


The other weapons of the beta:

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We previously learned that the Halo 5: Guardians multiplayer beta would feature eleven sandbox weapons. With the brand new footage and screenshots we have gotten we can confirm that the following will be available when the beta kicks off next month:

  1. Assault Rifle
  2. Battle Rifle
  3. DMR
  4. LightRifle
  5. Magnum
  6. Energy Sword
  7. Sniper Rifle
  8. SMG
  9. Grenade Launcher
  10. Rocket Launcher

That means we’re still waiting for one final gun to be revealed that will be featured in the beta.


For more information about the Halo 5: Guardians Multiplayer beta, be sure to check out our various other articles about it:


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