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Do NOT bring back the Halo 2 Anniversary Elites

OP MinusSquire2145

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AMA4N wrote:
I'm fine with H2A elites. They looked ugly in h4/5
Amen!
I would like it very much if 343 industries brought back the Halo CE elite design. In my opinion CE's elite design gives it more if a alien look than halo 4 and halo 5's design. plus the armor is less chunky in CE compared to halo 5 and 4. Does anyone else agree with me?
Look at the H2A Elite faces in particular. They are MUCH closer to the Halo 4/5 Elites than they are to the classic Halo Trilogy Sangheili.
What? How so? Honestly, I absolutely disagree with this.

The Elites in Reach and especially in HW2 got a much rougher skin compared to the trilogy variants sadly, but the smoothness of previous entries has also to do with the limits of the hardware of the past. So I can see how they were supposed to be like this even if I'm not a big fan of the exaggerated HW2 roughness, yet I can accept it and see it like a logical evolution that comes with better hardware and software. What I can't accept however is the way scalier, plastered and pale skin from H4/5 which has zero connection to the original design what so ever. You can even see a somewhat redish colorization near they necks, as indicating a thinner skin layer - besides that it doesn't make sense on an evolutionary sense, Elites don't have red flesh. Not to mention those quasi-spikes they got around the head. Where does this come from?!

And this was just about texture, skin and color. Talking about the skull, look at the one used in Reach. It's not as elongated as H1/2, but it's not too far off from if not identical to H3, so I don't know where this is coming from. By comparison H4/5 is even less elongated but overall a lot bigger as well. Also the eyes from Reach are the most similar to HCE and are the only variant so far that got that call-back right so far. Same goes for the teethes, which are different in every alliteration so far, but Reach got them way closer to HCE than any other game so far. Which brings me to the next point: The jaws.

Oh boy the jaws! The most criticized part from the new head designs and imho rightly so. A jaw line right behind the eye and even overlapping it while screaming. What were the designers thinking? Oh yes, they aimed for a more horrific look. Totally worked out! In fact the goofiness of the new head designs are really terrifying! That said Reach heavily changed the jaws as well. If you look closely H1 to 3 has bigger upper jaws while the one beneath are a little bit smaller and closer to the skull. Reach does the exact opposite, and while it seems like a small difference, the mouth pieces are such big eye-catchers overall, it's obvious that the appearance feels a lot more different compared to previous versions. But H4/5 go even further: all four pieces are identical in length, all are close to the skull, yet stretch out sideways a lot more, got an irregular shape and the end of the "lips" instead of being rounded and pointing invert are triangular and pointed forward.

The last point why your statement baffles me is the forehead. Again, this is a part of the head that changed a lot among all titles, but Reach at least tried to obtain a similar look to H3/HCE (H2's forehead is quite different by comparison), while H4/5 Sangheili just straight up changed the physiology of the skull itself. Now it's much more rounded, large, there is no more division between upper jaw and the eyebrows area, it end to a smaller and triangular shape and becomes inverted where the teeth part starts. It's the exact opposite geometry to the old styles! H2 is quite different in this regard as well, proposing much more suggestive "eyebrowns" for a lack of a better term, but the overall geometry is the same between all Bungie games. I guess this is also where the exaggerated "eyebrow" shape from H2A comes from, which is the one thing I hate from Blure's version. The jaws also could be bent a bit more to the inside to gain a closer look to HCE-H3, but it's not as jarring as Reach and especially not as different as H4/5.

What I personally hated about the Reach models were the feet, being way too big and almost completely removing the hoofs like silhouette - something that HW2 partially brought back though, so I got high hopes for the general silhouette in Hi! That said I would claim H4 & 5 were even worse in this regard. By a mile in fact. This was more about the head though!

So how exactly are the H4/5 even remotely more similar to the trilogy elites compared to the Reach ones? 😅 Because I ain't seeing it mate. Not at all! 😛
Look at the H2A Elite faces in particular. They are MUCH closer to the Halo 4/5 Elites than they are to the classic Halo Trilogy Sangheili.
What? How so? Honestly, I absolutely disagree with this.

The Elites in Reach and especially in HW2 got a much rougher skin compared to the trilogy variants sadly, but the smoothness of previous entries has also to do with the limits of the hardware of the past. So I can see how they were supposed to be like this even if I'm not a big fan of the exaggerated HW2 roughness, yet I can accept it and see it like a logical evolution that comes with better hardware and software. What I can't accept however is the way scalier, plastered and pale skin from H4/5 which has zero connection to the original design what so ever. You can even see a somewhat redish colorization near they necks, as indicating a thinner skin layer - besides that it doesn't make sense on an evolutionary sense, Elites don't have red flesh. Not to mention those quasi-spikes they got around the head. Where does this come from?!

And this was just about texture, skin and color. Talking about the skull, look at the one used in Reach. It's not as elongated as H1/2, but it's not too far off from if not identical to H3, so I don't know where this is coming from. By comparison H4/5 is even less elongated but overall a lot bigger as well. Also the eyes from Reach are the most similar to HCE and are the only variant so far that got that call-back right so far. Same goes for the teethes, which are different in every alliteration so far, but Reach got them way closer to HCE than any other game so far. Which brings me to the next point: The jaws.

Oh boy the jaws! The most criticized part from the new head designs and imho rightly so. A jaw line right behind the eye and even overlapping it while screaming. What were the designers thinking? Oh yes, they aimed for a more horrific look. Totally worked out! In fact the goofiness of the new head designs are really terrifying! That said Reach heavily changed the jaws as well. If you look closely H1 to 3 has bigger upper jaws while the one beneath are a little bit smaller and closer to the skull. Reach does the exact opposite, and while it seems like a small difference, the mouth pieces are such big eye-catchers overall, it's obvious that the appearance feels a lot more different compared to previous versions. But H4/5 go even further: all four pieces are identical in length, all are close to the skull, yet stretch out sideways a lot more, got an irregular shape and the end of the "lips" instead of being rounded and pointing invert are triangular and pointed forward.

The last point why your statement baffles me is the forehead. Again, this is a part of the head that changed a lot among all titles, but Reach at least tried to obtain a similar look to H3/HCE (H2's forehead is quite different by comparison), while H4/5 Sangheili just straight up changed the physiology of the skull itself. Now it's much more rounded, large, there is no more division between upper jaw and the eyebrows area, it end to a smaller and triangular shape and becomes inverted where the teeth part starts. It's the exact opposite geometry to the old styles! H2 is quite different in this regard as well, proposing much more suggestive "eyebrowns" for a lack of a better term, but the overall geometry is the same between all Bungie games. I guess this is also where the exaggerated "eyebrow" shape from H2A comes from, which is the one thing I hate from Blure's version. The jaws also could be bent a bit more to the inside to gain a closer look to HCE-H3, but it's not as jarring as Reach and especially not as different as H4/5.

What I personally hated about the Reach models were the feet, being way too big and almost completely removing the hoofs like silhouette - something that HW2 partially brought back though, so I got high hopes for the general silhouette in Hi! That said I would claim H4 & 5 were even worse in this regard. By a mile in fact. This was more about the head though!

So how exactly are the H4/5 even remotely more similar to the trilogy elites compared to the Reach ones? 😅 Because I ain't seeing it mate. Not at all! 😛
I totally agree with you! H4 and H5's elites are not similar whatsoever to the classic design of the original elites! Not to mention that the skin color unnaturally resembles them skin of a H5 jackal. The feet of the elite are also oversized and the armor is too bulky which makes it look brutish. HW2 elites may have little resemblance to the original design but H4 and H5's design is unacceptable!
I just miss the squishy feet of the Reach Elite. Not because I like feet or anything, it just looked better.
If you like the Halo 2 Anniversary Elites, I just ask that you please go into this with an open mind.

As someone who is not a fan of the Halo 4/5 Sangheili, not particularly fond of the Halo Reach Sangheili and cannot stand the H2A/HW2 Sangheili, I'd love to see a new design inspired by the classic Sangheili that appear in Halo's 1, 2 and 3. Here's a little summary of the appearances of the Elites across the games that may enlighten you as to why I'd like to see something new but classic inspired: (Click on the blue links to see some examples as you read)Halo CE - In Halo CE, the Elites have a simple, elegant, lean (slender but strong) design. They are clearly inspired by the Xenomorphs from the Alien franchise with their extra long skulls and necks as well as the Yautja from the Predator franchise with their split mouths/jaws. Their armour is sleek and colourful, but also pointed with 'fins' on their helmets, elbows and knees. Overall, they have an eel-like, shark-like appearance to match the rest of their ships, weapons and technology.
Halo 2 - The Sangheili change very little from Halo CE to Halo 2. With extra polygons, their shape is now more defined. The squid-like form of their heads, particularly the smoothness of the way their mandibles seamlessly split off from the sides of their heads, can now be more easily noticed. Two armour types have been discarded while four have been introduced, but overall, they still retain their sleek shark-like design.
Halo 3 - Their armour has a lot more detail to it and seems to be thicker without drastically changing the silhouette of the Elites. For the most part, they look, move and feel the same way as they did in Halo 2. On top of their more detailed standard combat harnesses, more armour has been introduced such as the Assault variant and plenty more multiplayer additions.
Halo Reach - Reach introduced the first major change to the Sangheili design. They now stand straighter and no longer have the rippled, fish scale texture beneath their armour. It has been replaced by rubbery undersuits. Their skulls are slightly shorter and don't meld into their mandibles in quite the same was as they did in Halos 1, 2 and 3, and there are far more variations of their armour. Overall, they still have the shark-like design to them, but it's much less obvious as they are far bulkier and with way more pieces to their armour than before. Their eyes have moved slightly closer to the front.
Halo 4 / 5 - Here the Sangheili armour changes again. It's equally as drastic as Reach's changes with around the same amount of armour variations. The default combat harness no longer comes with the classic 'fins' as before, which gives them a very different look. While their skulls are still long like classic Elites, they now have a dip in the middle and bumps/thorns along the sides. Their mandibles are very detached from their faces and start from a different position on their heads. For the first time, they physically move very differently from classic Sangheili. Their eyes have moved further closer to the front. Their hands are more claw-like. Overall, they retain some of their classic shark-like design, but lose much of it and feel a little more monstrous.
Halo 2 Anniversary - These Elites get a lot of praise in spite of the fact that they are arguably the most different from classic Sangheili. Their skulls are much shorter than any Sangheili ever seen in the games before this point. Their craniums are now clearly more inspired by Earth's snakes rather than sharks or xenomorphs. The front of their faces are quite flat with their eyes retaining their Halo 4/5 position at the front rather than sides. Their mandibles are very detached from their faces making them look much more 'clicky' and vastly different from Sangheili in Halos 1, 2 and 3. Their hands are claw-like, almost as much as the Halo 4/5 Elites. Their helmets are rounded and tilted downwards at the back rather than pointed upwards at the back as they've always been before. While their armour is still sleek-looking, overall, they look nothing like their classic shark-like selves from Halos 1, 2 and 3. They've gone from shark-like to saurian, a trait that used to belong exclusively to the Kig-Yar.

Halo 2 Thel 'Vadamee - Halo 2 Anniversary Thel 'VadameeIf 343i are working hard to make Halo feel like Halo again then we need to return to the classic look and feel of the original Sangheili, not these lizard-beast hybrids that have appeared since.

This image linked by JadeDragoon136 perfectly conveys what I was saying about head shape. The Halo Trilogy Elites have consistently strong, well-defined and elongated skulls with mandibles that perfectly meld into their face. Whereas the H2A Elite head has a much flatter and shortened skull with mandibles placed in a very forward and lowered position, making them look more 'clicky'. The H2A eyes are further forward and higher up as well.
Elite Variations
Finally someone got it, hallelujah. So glad I found you bro.

Aside from the anatomy (you read my mind there), there are some things I would add:

The armor - Originally, evey elite used a same armor design (aside from absolutely jusifyied expections, like the rangers in space, the honor guards or arbiter) it was made with practicality in mind, the rank color code was impossible to mistake, it looked all alien with those gem-like things, lights, an undersuit that looked like skin and it covered as much as possible, while remaining the closest to the body's sillouete. Nowadays the faces are an open shooting target, and why the heck do they expose the hands like that?

Language - in the eerie corridors of CE, you could hear them whisper in sangheili. It sounds absolutely nothing like a creature from earth, let alone someone talking. If you didn't know it was an elite, it could be anything. A robot? A ghost? A very unusal animal you can't imagine? When they saw you, the lines had this charm, this personality that made them original and memorable. Wort wort wort. (also why and how can they speak english? in H4 at least they had subtitles)

*Also in CE (and only here) who can forget how they dropped that dust-like extraterrestrial blood everywere? Seriously, this type of details that make them less like a creature we would expect feel more creative, as well as surprisingly realistic.

Animations - I know it wasn't intentional, but in the H2 and 3 cutscenes they moved in a very strange way. Not badly animated, just very distinct to what humans would. These was due to technology back then, but it made them feel more authentic and distanced from humans. I'm surprised they kinda respected this when they are talking, during spartan ops. In 2A and Wars 2 they seem too good to be true, too human and natural. You can tell that it was a person in motion capture. Those odd foreign poses and gestures were gone.

Aside from the original trilogy design, there has not been another that lasts for more than 2 games. I don't want the 2A model gone, I just think a few improvements on their body and behaviour would do the job.
What do you not like about the H2A Elites ?
Halo 3 Elites had the best armour, no? HW2 mixed the styles and I think that's a welcome thing.
Halo 3 Elites had the best armour, no? HW2 mixed the styles and I think that's a welcome thing.
To answer your question, I believe that H3 elite armor is best protection wise and weight wise (Excluding Halo Reach elite armor.)
Look at the H2A Elite faces in particular. They are MUCH closer to the Halo 4/5 Elites than they are to the classic Halo Trilogy Sangheili.
What? How so? Honestly, I absolutely disagree with this.
Everyone knows the main element Halo 4 introduced to the Elites was this slow, hulking, brutish nature they never had before; but the second element is what I also see in the H2A Elites. Look at their claws and their faces (faces, not heads). They now have very harsh, rough, reptilian skin as opposed to the smoother, eel-like ripples of the original trilogy Elites.
However! Having reviewed the following image, I've actually come to the conclusion that the H2A Elites don't really look like either the Halo 4 or original trilogy Elites.
Elite Variations
If you like the Halo 2 Anniversary Elites, I just ask that you please go into this with an open mind.
Finally someone got it, hallelujah. So glad I found you bro.

Aside from the anatomy (you read my mind there), there are some things I would add:

The armor - Originally, evey elite used a same armor design (aside from absolutely jusifyied expections, like the rangers in space, the honor guards or arbiter) it was made with practicality in mind, the rank color code was impossible to mistake, it looked all alien with those gem-like things, lights, an undersuit that looked like skin and it covered as much as possible, while remaining the closest to the body's sillouete. Nowadays the faces are an open shooting target, and why the heck do they expose the hands like that?

Language - in the eerie corridors of CE, you could hear them whisper in sangheili. It sounds absolutely nothing like a creature from earth, let alone someone talking. If you didn't know it was an elite, it could be anything. A robot? A ghost? A very unusal animal you can't imagine? When they saw you, the lines had this charm, this personality that made them original and memorable. Wort wort wort. (also why and how can they speak english? in H4 at least they had subtitles)

*Also in CE (and only here) who can forget how they dropped that dust-like extraterrestrial blood everywere? Seriously, this type of details that make them less like a creature we would expect feel more creative, as well as surprisingly realistic.

Animations - I know it wasn't intentional, but in the H2 and 3 cutscenes they moved in a very strange way. Not badly animated, just very distinct to what humans would. These was due to technology back then, but it made them feel more authentic and distanced from humans. I'm surprised they kinda respected this when they are talking, during spartan ops. In 2A and Wars 2 they seem too good to be true, too human and natural. You can tell that it was a person in motion capture. Those odd foreign poses and gestures were gone.
I love this comment! The part about the Elites' movement in Halo 2 and 3 is spot on. It's very evident in the scene where Thel gets his Arbiter armour in Halo 2 vs Halo 2 Anniversary. I really like the fluidity of it in Halo 3.

buzzsaw135 wrote:
What do you not like about the H2A Elites ?
I feel like I've elaborated on this a LOT in the original post and sequential replies.
Well, I agree that Halo 4 and Halo 5's Elite design is the worst ever of course, but I feel like H2A/HW2 Elites are quite almost identical to the original Elites from Bungie, so to me as long as the design is not the Halo 4 or Halo 5 I would be glad to see any of these

approved designs (IMO):
  • Halo CE :)
  • Halo 2 :)
  • Halo 3 :)
  • Halo Wars :)
  • Halo 3 ODST :)
  • Halo Reach :)
  • Halo CEA :)
  • Halo 2A :)
  • Halo Wars 2 :)
Trash these:
  • Halo 4 and Halo 5 >:(
tsassi wrote:
I think you're exaggerating the differences. I certainly find it strange that you declare the Halo 2A elites "the most different from classic Sangheili", when that hat clearly goes to the abominations of Halo 4 and 5. Frankly, I'd say that Halo 2A Elites are overall closest to the Halo 2 Elites from all the games after. The only thing I notice off the bat is the eye position and the shape of the face. which could maybe be fixed a bit, but it doesn't really bother me because their faces at least look respectable. It's probably not my ideal, but it's not something I'm upset with.
Yeah I definately agree that the H2A elites are much closer than the H4/5 Elites. Basically if you lengthen the skull and put the eyes back in the right spot, mabye make the mandables tigher in, you're there!
I'd love to see the return of the Halo 3 artstyle/engine instead of anything post ODST...but I'm dreaming I know.
Finally somebosy said it. Halo 2A Elites are ULGY.
I just miss the squishy feet of the Reach Elite. Not because I like feet or anything, it just looked better.
It had great detail. If you stood just over an edge the toes would point down.
I always thought the Halo 2 Anniversary Elites from the campaign looked faithful to the ones in Halo 2 classic. I do see some minor differences, but they look like the classic Elites compared to the ones in Halo 4 and 5. though I do want to see the classic designs of Elites return in Halo Infinite.
X19Doug95 wrote:
Finally somebosy said it. Halo 2A Elites are ULGY.
I don't get it. I understand the eyes are in a slightly different place and maybe their head is a little smaller but the biggest difference is their hands aren't gloved like H2 original and their armor covers a lot more of their body. The jaw is definately farther from the rest of the face or maybe just spread out more but I don't think it's that bad. The eyes being more in front of their head actually makes more sense for a predator since typically predators have eyes in the front while non predatory creatures have the eyes to the side. The eyes in the front help with depth perception while eyes to the side are better for situational awareness.
X19Doug95 wrote:
Finally somebosy said it. Halo 2A Elites are ULGY.
I don't get it. I understand the eyes are in a slightly different place and maybe their head is a little smaller but the biggest difference is their hands aren't gloved like H2 original and their armor covers a lot more of their body. The jaw is definately farther from the rest of the face or maybe just spread out more but I don't think it's that bad. The eyes being more in front of their head actually makes more sense for a predator since typically predators have eyes in the front while non predatory creatures have the eyes to the side. The eyes in the front help with depth perception while eyes to the side are better for situational awareness.
You just said that you don't get it and then explained several ways the H2A Elites look different from their original design. That's the point. They're no longer those same Elites we began with. Imagine if any other iconic alien from say Star Wars or Star Trek randomly had a complete makeover that deliberately changed this many elements of their original appearance. Just because Halo is a video game series does not mean it gets to screw around like this.
The Halo Wars 2 Elites are bomb af! Halo 2 Anniversary are beautiful as well! Halo 4 and 5 Elites are nice it was just too big of a change for Halo and no one could adapt too it!
WWelchIII wrote:
The Halo Wars 2 Elites are bomb af! Halo 2 Anniversary are beautiful as well! Halo 4 and 5 Elites are nice it was just too big of a change for Halo and no one could adapt too it!
I personally don't agree.
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