How did that work? When a match ended were they able to stay in the que or did they just have big custom games with no time or score limit?
When the servers were shutoff, no one was able to sign into OG Xbox Live anymore. I don’t believe the servers were truly switched off at that time, rather they no longer allowed people to log in to give people time to finish their games before Microsoft finally got rid of or re-purpose the servers.
So in effect, as long as the players did not turn their Xbox’s off, stop running Halo 2 (i.e change games) and did not do anything that would force them to sign out of Xbox Live such as completing the final level of the campaign (The Great Journey), then the players could stay online and continue to matchmake, host custom games and do everything they did before.
However, as mentioned and as the article covers, over time other factors caused the player count to drop, ranging from Xbox’s overheating, disconnecting/booted from LIVE, home network hiccups/issues ultimately lead to the player count decreasing and, once the player had lost their connection, they could no longer log back in to join the other Final Few.