The United Nations Space Command Marine Corps is a branch of the UNSC Defense Force that is responsible for land-based military operations as well as the protection of Naval vessels and installations from attack.
A rugged and diverse assortment of well equipped and well trained men and women, one of the Marine Corps's most notable conflicts was fighting a losing war against the Covenant's highly superior technology and numbers.
The UN Marine Corps (predecessor of the UNSC Marine Corps) were one of the primary combat groups fielded by the UN in the Interplanetary War, and were the first military organization deployed offworld in 2163. After the United Nations claimed victory in 2164, it reorganized into the UNSC, thereby changing the UN Marine Corps to the UNSC Marine Corps. Later, the UNSC Marine Corps would be responsible for dealing with Insurrectionist uprisings among UNSC colonies star systems.
During the course of the Human-Covenant War, the Marines played a central role in maintaining a defensive stand as well as assaulting several Covenant base of operations. The battles of Harvest, Arcadia, Sigma Octanus IV, and Earth saw fierce fighting between Marines and the Covenant Army.
The UNSC Marine Corps' first encounter with the Covenant was at the First Battle of Harvest in 2525. At the event, only three Marine officers were present, training the planet's Colonial Militia. During the battle, Captain Ponder became the Corps' first casualty of the war.
Five years after the First Battle of Harvest, the Corps' experienced their first major encounter with the Covenant at the Third Battle of Harvest in 2531. During the event, the Marines quickly established a base of operations in Harvest's arctic region. A reconnaissance force led by Sergeant John Forge was deployed to survey the area. However, during the patrol, Covenant forces under the command of a Covenant Arbiter overran and nearly destroyed those base of operations. Forge rallied scattered marines, who quickly retook the base from the aliens. After receiving reinforcements and repairing the base, the Marines fought through a sizeable Covenant garrison force in an attempt to secure a mysterious Forerunner structure in the region.
The First Battle of Arcadia saw the UNSC Marine Corps holding the defensive line around major population centers to allow evacuation for the civilian population with the assistance of the SPARTAN-II Red Team. Successful keeping Covenant forces from occupying the population centers, the Corps' began launching multiple assaults on the Covenant's base of operations to reclaim the planet.
The Corps' experienced another encounter with the Covenant on the colony world of Sigma Octanus IV. Upon landing, the Marines' hardware and equipments were rendered useless due to the planet's harsh environment. In the first stage of the battle, during a naval engagement, a Covenant Carrier was able to land a large contingent of troops on the northern pole of the planet. The Covenant were able to take Côte d'Azur, a major population center. Fortunately, almost all of the civilian population was able to be evacuated beforehand, and UNSC Marine Corps General Kits launched a failed assault to retake the city.
The UNSC Marine Corps maintained a sizable presence of Reach when the Covenant stormed the planet bypassing the defense fleet in orbit and the MAC Gun platforms thus make a landing of large numbers of soldiers on the south and north poles. During the early hours of the battle, the Covenant had overrun FLEETCOM HQ on Reach, destroying the perimeter and swarming the Marine defenders with Banshees, Wraiths, and battalions of infantry. The situation became severe and critical where the Marines were forced to defend the Orbital Defense Generators against a massive Covenant assault, using every available armored vehicle and defensive positions from available bunkers. The Battle of Reach became one of the most devastating UNSC Marine Corps defeat in the Human-Covenant War.
The surviving Marines from the Battle of Reach served an important role in the Battle of Installation 04, taking part in such engagements as securing the UNSC Pillar of Autumn crash site, launching multiple guerrilla assault on Covenant convoys and base of operations and rescuing captured Pillar of Autumn's personnel from a Covenant Battlecruiser. Initially, the Marines were part of a special operation consisting of a sizable Orbital Drop Shock Trooper special forces detachment and a standard Marine detachment to infiltrate Covenant High Command and kidnap a Covenant Prophet.
The UNSC Marine Corps remained in force on Earth and its geosynchronous Orbital Defense Platforms, and were mostly prepared to repulse a relatively small Covenant invasion when fifteen Covenant capital warships, two Assault Carriers and thirteen Covenant Cruisers, entered the Sol System. They played a significant role in the the Covenant ground assault on Earth where they defended multiple major population centers from the Covenant's occupation such as those in New Mombasa and Cleveland and Havana.
The Marine Corps also partook in a major UNSC assault with the UNSC Navy in Voi. As ground forces, the Marines engage in the Battle of Voi with a SPARTAN-II supersoldier by eliminating anti-air vehicles and anti-air battery structure as well as destroying temporary Covenant outposts to allow UNSC reinforcements to fortify the area.
Several Marine detachments made a major turning point during the course of the Battle of Earth where they manage to retake the cities and maintain a temporary ground control for UNSC reinforcements to arrive. Such Marine detachments were the 405th Marine Infantry Division which was able to engage against the Covenant ground forces in Mombasa, Kenya as the Covenant Assault Carrier landed Phantoms, Orbital Insertion Pods, and used its Gravity Lift to directly deploy reinforcements.
This section requires expansion.
The Marine Corps Dress Uniforms are similar to those worn by their 20th and 21st Century predecessors in the United States Marine Corps. UNSC Marines wear what appear to be the UNSC's modified and stylized version of the United States Marine Corps emblem on their collars. Furthermore, white jackets and blue trousers are worn instead of the blue dress uniforms of the United States Marines. However, in 2525, the uniform apparently consisted of a blue jacket and trousers, similar to that of the USMC.
Marines have few bio-augmentations and usually wear passively camouflaged armored uniforms. They wear dark-colored metal-alloy armor to shield them from gunfire. Marine helmets are mounted with holographic text-displaying eyepieces and helmet recorders. As well as helmets, Marines on field operations in more humid locales sometimes choose to wear boonie covers, or those in colder environments don visored and thicker helmets.
Marines on Installation 04 sported gray fatigues, and over that, pieces of brown armor plating covering the head, torso, shoulder, and shins. At times, they only wore their utilities and soft body armor, even forgoing helmets and body armor plating in hazardous combat operations. At times, their helmets were also substituted for boonie covers and sometimes bandannas. However, since they had to get off the Pillar of Autumn, they probably didn't have time to grab their gear. Some Marines had small medical packs built into their back armor plating.
Standard Marine battle armor appears to be woodland-pattern camouflage utilities, along with an olive drab load-bearing armored vest. The standard-issue armor is uniform than the body armor issued to the Marines on Alpha Halo, as the Marines no longer appear as a rag-tag group of survivors, but as a unified force. They no longer wear boonie covers and are never seen in combat without rigid armor. In fact, the only time Marines were seen without any armor was during the awards ceremony aboard Cairo Station. In that particular case, they were wearing their white dress uniform.
Another variation of Marine armor is an evolution from that mentioned above, with heavier and well-articulated olive-drab full body armor (armored vest, shoulder plates, elbow pads, and knee pads) over woodland camouflage utilities, allowing them to passively camouflage well in jungle terrain. Marines sometimes don small helmet communications microphones or black-phased sunglasses on their helmets, and others carry backpacks. Marines have been seen to wear black gloves, probably to protect their hands and improve their grip on their weapons. Some marines sport orange visors which attach to the brim of their helmets. This usually signifies advanced vehicular training, as these marines can be seen operating vehicles more frequently, and are noticeably better at driving them.
Marines operating in cold environments wear environmentally-tailored armor, with insulated snow camouflage utilities and full body armor and well as insulated and visored helmets with something analogous to a balaclava.
Orbital Drop Shock Troopers sport heavy and articulated black battle armor, which are also believed to double as an armored g-suit that allows for safe transport in small ships during turbulent atmospheric entry. They also wear fully-visored black helmets that cover the entirety of the head. This armor provides ODSTs with more protection then standard marine armor. Their armor could also take several head shots.
The standard issue weapon for UNSC Marines Corps is the MA5 series of assault rifles. Most Marines were issued the MA5B variant until its replacement in late 2552 by the BR55HB SR and MA5C. Suppressive fire was provided by the M247 GPMG during the Battle of Earth, presumably replaced by the AIE-486H Heavy Machine Gun by the time of the Battle of Voi. Special forces and vehicle crews are issued M7 and M7S Submachine Gun variants, with personal sidearms such as the M6 Series.
Snipers operate the SRS 99C-S2 AM and SRS 99D-S2 AM sniper rifle variants for anti-materiel and anti-personnel operations, with the M99 Special Application Scoped Rifle used as a dedicated anti-materiel weapon. Standard UNSC sniper team consists of two operators; a spotter and a sniper.
Anti-armor fire is provided by the M19 and M41 rocket or missile launchers and the W/AV M6 G/GNR Spartan Laser directed-energy-weapon. Anti-air fire is provided by the M19-B SAM Missile Launcher, capable of destroying Banshees and damaging Seraph fighters.
The UNSC Marines Corps' standard vehicle is the M12 Warthog LRV, used for armored patrols and personnel mobility. The M12G1 Warthog LAAV is used as an anti-armor vehicle, mounted with an M68 Gauss Cannon, as well as the M12A1 Warthog LAAV mounted with a 102mm SC-HE Rocket Turret, firing 102mm shaped-charge high-explosive rockets. For heavy engagements, the Marine Corps operates the M808B Scorpion Main battle Tank, and uses the Wolverine in an anti-air role.
The Corps' most common aircraft is the Pelican dropship, either the D77-TC or, in late 2552, the D77H-TCI variants, as multirole aerodynes which is capable of carrying a mixture of Scorpion anti-tank rockets and Anvil II air-to-surface missiles, and equipped with either chin-mounted 7.62mm Machine-Guns or 70mm Auto-Cannons.
The UNSC Marine Corps also operates the Longsword as it's primary fighter for tactical bombardment, the Hawk as an close air support gunship, the Shortsword as a short-range bomber, the Hornet aerial support vehicle, and the SkyHawk VTOL strike fighter. Marine air units are intended usually to support ground forces or to drop off vital equipment for the Marines, either in close-air-support or air interdiction roles, with the UNSC Navy or UNSC Air Force taking on the dedicated air force role.
The rank structure of the UNSC Marine Corps is based around that of the United States Marine Corps.
|UNSC Defense Force commissioned officer ranks|
|O-1||O-2||O-3||O-4||O-5||O-6||O-7||O-8||O-9||O-10||Special (Wartime Only)|
|Air Force:||2nd Lt||1st Lt||Capt||Maj||Lt Col||Col||Brig Gen||Maj Gen||Lt Gen||Gen||GOAF|
|UNSC Defense Force enlisted ranks|
|E-1||E-2||E-3||E-4||E-5||E-6||E-7||E-8||E-9||Senior Enlisted Advisor|
|Air Force:||AB||Amn||A1C||SrA||SSgt||TSgt||MSgt||SMSgt||CMSgt - CCM||CMSAF|
|Army:||PV1||PV2||PFC||SPC - CPL||SGT||SSG||SFC||MSG - 1SG||SGM - CSM||SMA|
|Marine Corps:||Pvt||PFC||LCpl||Cpl||Sgt||SSgt||GySgt||MSgt - 1stSgt||MGySgt - SgtMaj||SgtMajMC|
|Navy:||CR||CA||CN||PO3||PO2||PO1||CPO||SCPO||MCPO - CMDCM - FORCM - FLTCM||MCPON|
|United Nations Space Command Defense Force|
|Uniformed services||Army • Air Force • Marine Corps • Navy|
|Major sub-divisions||Special Forces • Naval Intelligence • Colonial Militia|
UNSC Marines render of Halo Wars.
UNSC Marines engaging a Covenant ground squad in Halo Wars.
Both the Arctic and standard variation of the Marine Battle Dress seen in Halo Wars.
M5B2 Armor as seen on an Xbox LIVE Avatar; available for purchase in the Avatar Marketplace along with miscellaneous Halo-related items.