Noble Map Pack adds depth to the Reach experience

Noble Map Pack adds depth to the Reach experience

A spartan uses his jetpack on Anchor 9.

Bradley Wilson, Editor-in-Chief

On Tuesday November 30th, the Noble Map Pack dawned, and Halo players all over the world were given three new multiplayer maps to fight over.  Available for ten dollars via in game download, the Noble map pack features three completely new maps, all designed entirely from scratch (you won’t have seen these maps in the campaign) and tailored to different game types. For those who are on the edge of buying, I’m going to give my two cents on each of the new maps.

Anchor 9:

Set in a space station in outer space, Anchor 9 is the smallest of the three new maps in the Noble pack. Designed for small team close quarters combat, Anchor 9 features games for 4-8 people in a variety of variants, from Slayer to Capture the Flag. A unique feature of Anchor 9 is a zone outside the space station that is set in low gravity, so players will be able to “float” around while shooting each other. This allows for some funny and unique moments, which are unavailable in other maps. Fans of the map The Pit, from Halo 3, will feel at home at Anchor 9, as it was designed with the same things in mind. Anchor 9 has been a blast from my experience so far, and has allowed for some competitive team game play. I’m hesitant to call it my favorite, just because my personal play style lends itself to longer range combat, but for those who like close quarters combat, Anchor 9 does not disappoint.


Tempest showcases Bungie’s ability to create maps that are not only fun to play, but visually breathtaking. Set at a weather station on a portion of an island, Tempest is in my opinion the best looking map. Looks aside, Tempest also is my favorite map to play. The mid-sized map of the group, Tempest is best suited for games of eight to twelve players. Like Anchor 9, multiple game types are available to play. At first glance, Tempest will remind Halo 3 players of Valhalla, although it is slightly smaller, and has more terrain to hide behind, sneak through, and play around. Tempest earns my favorite spot because it blends both long and short range combat, and creates games that are fast paced if you are a run and gun type player, or slower paced if you enjoy long range combat and sniping. 


Invasion players are probably not reading this and already playing Breakpoint. Designed with the Invasion game mode specifically in mind, Breakpoint is the largest map of the bunch. While it was designed for Invasion, it isn’t exclusively an Invasion map, and you can expect it to be showing up in the big team playlist as well. It has a similar structure to Avalanche from Halo 3, but in my opinion has been refined and is better constructed. I wasn’t a big fan of Avalanche, but have had a lot of fun in Breakpoint so far. Vehicles are numerous, so those who enjoy flying and driving, Breakpoint is your map. Personally it is my least favorite map, however I don’t think it is a bad map. I just would rather be playing different playlists, and smaller maps.


If you own Reach, buy the maps. It’s that simple. They complement the existing maps, and add more depth to the multiplayer experience. None of the maps are poorly created, unfair, or not fun. Bungie takes a lot of time developing these maps, and it truly shows. Right now, there is a DLC only playlist, for those eager to spend a lot of time fighting on new terrain, but expect the maps to be integrated into the old playlists in the near future.