Two spartans standing next to each other in Halo Infinite
Image via 343 Industries

The 10 best Halo maps of all time – Halo 3, Halo: Reach, and more

The best spots for Big Team Battle, Free-for-All, and everything else.

Halo games are divided into two big halves: the campaign and the multiplayer. The latter is where many players spend all of their time, racking up wins and taking on other Spartans around the world in all sorts of playlists and custom game modes. The series has seen dozens of maps over the years, but which ones have stood the test of time? Here’s our list of the 10 best Halo maps, arranged alphabetically.

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Related: How to play the Halo games in order

Battle Creek (Halo: Combat Evolved)

Image via Halo Alpha

It’s fitting that Battle Creek comes first on this list because it’s the quintessential Capture the Flag map. It’s a small area with a clear dividing line, separating the two team bases. The simple layout is deceptive though, thanks to teleports hidden behind each base. A bona fide classic.

Blood Gulch (Halo: Combat Evolved)

Image via Halo Alpha

Battle Creek is the go-to CTF map, and Blood Gulch is pretty much the epitome of the series — if this were a ranked list, it would be number one. It’s a perfectly sized map with two symmetrical bases, rooftops and mountain paths for sniping, and a whole lot of room for combat in the field between. Plus, it’s the home turf of classic Red vs Blue.

Coagulation (Halo 2)

Image via Halo Alpha

Imitation is the sincerest form of flattery, and Coagulation is a rework of Blood Gulch for Halo 2. This map improves the field between the bases by adding different terrain elevations and other objects, making the open-air portion less of a death trap. Coagulation is also a perfect name given the map’s roots in Blood Gulch.

Guardian (Halo 3)

Image via Halo Alpha

Speaking of names, this map came along several years before Halo 5: Guardians shared the same title. Guardian is known for having different levels of elevation that make for tricky shots and ambush opportunities. Its design concept of a base built into the sides of grassy cliffs is also a cool idea on its own.

Lockdown (Halo 2: Anniversary)

Image via Halo Alpha

Lockdown is a redo of the original Halo 2 map Lockout, and although it doesn’t change the layout, it does add a new trick. This is a winter map (with snow-dusted floors that looked particularly excellent at the time), and Anniversary players were able to drop icicles onto players’ heads if they timed their shots right.

Midship (Halo 3)

Image via Halo Alpha

Midship is meant to be small — and it is. Few maps in Halo are as claustrophobic as this one, making it an excellent place for 1v1s or particularly chaotic free-for-alls. The Energy Sword was introduced in Halo 2, but it became particularly deadly here in 3. You can wreak serious havoc if you manage to grab it on this close-quarters map.

The Pit (Halo 3)

Image via Halo Alpha

It looks like a mid-tier Forge creation, but The Pit is one of the most balanced and truly skill-based maps in all of Halo. There are no bottlenecks or special spots to lie in wait: The Pit forces all players to stay on the move at all times. It’s a mid-range gunner’s dream.

Sword Base (Halo: Reach)

Image via Halo Alpha

One of the first maps that Halo: Reach players got to try is also one of the best in the series. Sword Base is symmetrical, making it perfect for Capture the Flag, and its verticality means that dropping onto the flag-carrier or fleeing via Gravity Lift are viable strategies at all times. Despite the name, there’s only one Energy Sword to claim here, and you can really throw a wrench into a CTF match with it.

Valhalla (Halo 3)

Image via Halo Alpha

Valhalla is all about scale, making it a showcase map for Halo 3’s graphical and technical capabilities. It’s also inspired by Blood Gulch, but you might not even realize that as you explore its bases, river, and hills. Each base in Valhalla offers arguably the most fun Man Cannon launches in the game, flinging players a huge distance across the valley.

Zanzibar (Halo 2)

Image via Halo Alpha

Last but certainly not least is Zanzibar, a map that manages to offer something for every kind of player. From the shoreline to the rooftops, there are a variety of spaces that offer short-, mid-, and long-range options. That big fan is also super iconic.

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Tony Wilson
Tony has been covering games for more than a decade. Tony loves platformers, RPGs and puzzle games.