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Halo 2 Vista: Misc



Up to date as of February 08, 2010

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Halo 2 for Windows Vista
US Date Released
UK Date Released
Game modes:
ESRB rating:
Mature (M)
PC - Windows Vista Exclusive.

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Bungie Studios, along with Hired Gun (a division of Microsoft Studios), ported Halo 2 to PC for use on the Windows Vista operating system exclusively, as a release title for the "Games for Windows" category. It was released May 31, 2007. Some speculated that the game will be released for Windows XP eventually, though it is confirmed it never will. However, the game can be played on an XP by using an unauthorized patch and can be played in both single-player and multiplayer modes.


Main Additions

Halo 2 Vista has been reworked graphically for the PC, including high-resolution textures and support for very high resolutions, something the Xbox version didn't have. While the single player campaign does not differ from the Xbox version, if the player has a gamertag for Live, they can earn firstly tried and all new single- and multiplayer achievements.

One of the selling points of Halo 2 Vista is an included map editor. It will include the same programs as previously used in the Halo Editing Kit.These programs are Guerrilla, Sapien, and Tool. The game's map editor also includes a pre-made "custom" map by default, named Example, which was made for players to observe as an example for making their own custom maps.

The release date was originally planned for May 8, 2007. However, the release date had been delayed to May 22, 2007 (May 29, 2007 in Australia) because the team needed "to make some improvements to the install experience and address other technical issues." However, release dates had been erratic, as Australia had publicly available copies, and some stores in the United States were selling copies as well. Microsoft had stated that the release date had been pushed back one final time, due to partial nudity found in the Halo 2 Vista Map Editing Kit, making the release date May 31st for the United States. These glitches can be removed.

A new ability pushed by the Microsoft team is a feature called "Tray and Play". It is an attempt to emulate the ability of consoles to instantly play new discs in a DVD Drive without installing them. It allows the end-user to play the game as it is installing.

Multiplayer Additions

Screenshot of Halo 2 Vista, showing high resolution.

Halo 2 Vista, being a release title of Games for Windows, includes support for the Live for Windows system. It intertwines with the Xbox Live system, allowing communication with someone who has an Xbox. However, cross-platform play is not supported (this feature was planned). The interface is similar to that of the Xbox 360 dashboard. Instead of using peer to peer matchmaking, players will be able to create dedicated servers, which are created with a program that comes with the disc.

Gamertags, which are used on Xbox Live, are also used on Live for Windows. If a player were to have an Xbox Live gamertag, they would be able to log on using that. Otherwise, a free account can be registered for a player. Players can also match up in parties, and the party leader can specify maps and game types to play on the go.

Exclusive to Halo 2 Vista are 2 new maps, District and Uplift (However, Halo 2 Vista does not include the maps Desolation or Tombstone, but recently two authors have ported Tombstone). Users may also create their own custom maps using the new map editor, so you can remake them however you like, and then host games with those. Other players can download the map while in the lobby.

System Requirements

The minimum system requirements to run Halo 2 on Windows Vista is a Windows Experience Index of 3.0. The recommended system requirements is a WEI of 5.0. You can play the game with a rating of less than 3.0 but you have to reduce graphics quality.

  • Requires Windows Vista or 7
  • 2GHz Pentium 4 Class Processor (or x64)
  • 1GB of RAM
  • 7GB of hard drive space
  • Nvidia 6100/ATI x700 video card or above
  • DVD-ROM drive

The game can be set on different levels of detail (low, medium, or high) to change performance and appearance. Anti-Aliasing and resolution can be changed, as well.


Halo 2 for Vista was rated M for Violence, Language, Blood and Gore, and also Partial Nudity, which the Xbox version lacked. It turns out that a bug in an .ass error appeared to show the butt of a naked man. This can be removed simply with a patch downloadable from the Halo 2 Vista website. Originally people thought the rating was because of Cortana's nude figure, until Bungie discovered the .ass error.


The Vista version of Halo 2 was considerably less popular than the Xbox version of the game. Besides selling incredibly low due to the negative reception of the Vista, it also was far less highly rated than the Xbox version. The game netted a mere 7.5 out of 10 from IGN, and received only an 8 out of 10 from Game Informer. Game Informer cited the outdated graphics and lack of innovation, which they said made the game feel "too outdated for a next-generation PC game, especially compared with how stunning Halo 2 had been on Xbox".


  • Achievements were included with the PC version of Halo 2, though they can only unlock while you are logged into Games for Windows-Live. These Achievements are shown on your Live profile and go towards your Gamerscore, just like Xbox 360 games.
    • If you play part of a level logged off Games for Windows-Live then play the rest of the level logged on you can't get achievements without restarting the whole level.
  • Halo 2 Windows Vista is the only Live enabled game that is not on Games for Windows-Live distribution service.


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External Links

Halo Games
Halo Trilogy Halo: Combat EvolvedHalo 2Halo 3
Other Halo Games Halo WarsHalo 3: ODSTHalo: Reach
PC/Mac Halo PCHalo 2 Vista
Cancelled Titles Halo ChroniclesHalo MMOHalo DS

This article uses material from the "Halo 2 Vista" article on the Halo wiki at Wikia and is licensed under the Creative Commons Attribution-Share Alike License.

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