Suicidal Elites at the landing zone

Posted April 11th 2015

Associated movies

  • BCM138 - Heroic; Suicidal Elites at the landing zone (6:46)
There he goes, clumsy oaf

At the landing zone you can make an Elite suicidally leap off into the chasm, as follows (I think I noticed this in 2014 or maybe 2013).

Bordering the chasm on the ship-side area is a low rim, but beyond that rim there's a narrow ledge you can easily get onto and run along. Once you're on it, get an Elite into rage mode by taking down his shield and weakening him almost to the point of death. He'll then try to come and get you, either via the ledge's far end or near end, depending on where you are. But accessing that ledge is rather tricky for him, especially if he's approaching it from a relatively acute angle, as is likely.

As long as he doesn't pause to eyeball you (some hiding is advisable), at the far end he'll almost certainly run off the edge. At the near end, access is easier for him but there's still a good chance he'll run off, or stumble off after some pausing or stuttering. At both ends his departure angle can vary, because he's trying to round the sharp bend and may partially do so before losing traction. On rare occasions you may see him leaving at quite a shallow angle to the ledge, having almost made it around.

Took friendly fire too!

Let me expand on what I said about some hiding being advisable. If he's going to be running past you on his way to one end of the rim, it's good to duck out of sight until he's some way past, otherwise he's liable to stop and face you - although if you then duck out of sight, he'll probably resume his course. If you're instead near the end he's going for, you're best advised to hide before he gets there, else he's less likely to run off. That said, hiding isn't always necessary; it can depend on the exact situation I think. In BCM138 you'll see one case with a blue Elite where I don't bother to hide at all, and he keeps running and goes straight off into the chasm. He was doing that regularly. Incidentally, sometimes an Elite can run off backwards if he turned to face you.

Hey fella, thought I'd join you

Aside from the basic fun of seeing an Elite run off, looking rather foolish, there are some other things you can do for fun, and you'll see a variety of those in my movie. One idea is to kill him as he falls; for example with a pistol headshot, or by tagging him as he goes (I'll say more about plasma grenades in a moment). Another idea is to follow him down, and maybe kill him as you fall. On Legendary there are two Elites and you might like to try and make them run off together (an example of which I included in the movie). Might need perseverance though; it's not easy to get them both raging at once.

All this can also be done with the rim ledge on the other side of the landing zone, but it's obviously not as convenient to reach.

Getting an Elite raging

A good fast way of getting your Elite raging is to initially get his shield down or almost down with pistol fire, then use AR fire. If you were to continue using pistol fire, that could be dangerous due to the risk of an unintended headshot killing him. Plus, the damage caused by a pistol round is more than that caused by an AR round, so there would be a higher chance of taking him past his rage point and actually killing him. The weak damage caused by AR rounds is an advantage for once! An alternative to starting with pistol fire is to use a plasma ball or rapid plasma fire, if you've got a plasma pistol from a Grunt (see the next section).

Gimme all your plasmas!

Plasma grenades and a handy new checkpoint

If you want to play with plasma grenades or get a plasma pistol, you can quite easily set things up with a convenient new checkpoint. When you disembark from the Pelican, immediately run to the wall to get out of sight of the emerging Elite (or Elites on Legendary), then enter the passage and blitz the Grunts to get what you want. A new checkpoint is triggered just past the start of the long middle section, and you can keep that delayed initially by jumping. You now have a few options. One is to simply end the delay while still in the passage, like I did in BCM138. As long as you're not under enemy threat, you should get it.

Double tag coming right up

Another is to keep the delay going until you're actually on the ledge. That's usually not much trouble on Heroic or lower as there's only one Elite to get clear of and he'll probably be to the right of the exit as you head out. On Legendary things are a lot trickier because there are two Elites to get clear of, but it's still possible. It can be useful to distract them with a grenade throw; hopefully they'll watch the grenade for a few seconds. Anyway, once you're on the ledge, the rim gives you good cover from the Elite or Elites, and if you duck down and maybe move away a bit, you should be able to get the delayed checkpoint.

Having a checkpoint on the ledge with the Elite or Elites already present is the most efficient set-up for playing around with Elite suiciding. I think it's also nice to have some Grunts left alive for atmosphere; you don't need to kill them all in the passage. If you want, you could even pre-weaken your Elite (or Elites) before the checkpoint, so it won't take so long to cause raging afterwards.