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Halo 2 Hacks by Stephen Cawood

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Chapter 2. Halo 2 Skulls

Hacks 6–20: Introduction

In video game terminology, Easter egg refers to a treat added by game developers. Easter eggs come in many flavors. Of all the ones that I have seen, the Halo 2 skulls are the most impressive. If it wasn't jammed under my helmet, I'd tip my cap to Microsoft's Bungie developers and their system of Halo 2 skulls.

The skulls are objects hidden throughout the single-player campaign. They resemble a human skull—the Halo 2 multiplayer Oddball game type uses the same object as its "ball." The skulls are impressive for a number of reasons: they are difficult to find, each has its own unique effect, and there is a cloud of mystery surrounding them. In addition, by including the skulls, the developers added a new dimension to the single-player campaign. Instead of facing the restriction of playing out the same scenes repeatedly, Halo 2 gamers can choose to add a twist by activating one of the many skulls. For example, a hardcore Halo fan may choose to activate the Assassins skull [Hack #14] and play the entire game against cloaked enemies. Some of the skulls make the campaign easier, while others make it a great deal more difficult. Which skulls you activate is entirely up to you.

Skulls have no effect on multiplayer games—so don't expect to be able to use the Envy skull [Hack #13] in your Slayer games. All but one of the skulls require that you activate them on the Legendary difficulty setting. They either will not spawn on the other settings ...

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