Windward is a Halo 3: ODST Firefight map, based on the campaign level NMPD HQ. Players initially spawn with a Sniper Rifle at the start of the round, but only ammunition can be found on the map. All players respawn with SMGs. The Special Enemy of this map is the Banshee, which spawns at the beginning of every wave and 2 Missile Pod Turrets with which to shoot it down.
Players start in a central building on the second floor. When they leave this room, they will enter a hall with stairs in the middle. On the other side of the hall there is a room with two med-kits. If you go downstairs, you will find two med-kits on each side of the hall (making it four med-kits in the central building). Should you take the doors in the lower hall, you will enter a small room with doors that lead on the left and right ledge. In the middle of this small room is a rocket launcher pack (two rockets).
Exterior/ledges, courtyard and tunnels
- Looking towards the ledges, you will find the rocket launcher on the left (on a small dispenser, which is near the missile pod) and the shotgun on the right side (this time it is further away from the missile pod than the rocket launcher is). Going all the way to the ledge will reward the player with extra ammunition.
- On both sides of the central building, there are two courtyards (or gardens) with multiple stairs and paths which lead to: second floor of the central building, rocket ammo room, landing pads and ledges.
- This map has a number of small tunnels which lead to two landing pads. You can enter these tunnels from the lower courtyards near the ledges.
Enemy spawn points
Enemies can enter the playing field by a number of ways: Phantoms (which land on the pads or in the middle of the courtyards) or from the "monster closets" (shielded doors that the player can't enter). When the bonus round begins, the grunts can come from the roofs of the surrounding building or from the mentioned "monster closets." Enemies which appear on this map are: Brutes (all forms and ranks), Grunts, Jackals (a Jackal sniper can appear as well, but most of the time they are equipped with carbines or shields), Drones (shielded variant is present as well), Hunters and Brute-piloted Banshees.
- The best method of playing on this map is to hold up in the central building and exit only to get the Rocket Launcher and Missile Pods from outside to use against the Covenant inside the central building. From there, it’s all about good aim and a little bit of crowd control.
- If you decide to stay outside, you will be either shot to death, or stuck after the Catch Skull comes into play (there are just too many places from which the grenades can bounce off). Your best option is to take the advice above. Though you can survive for a long time on the earlier sets and rounds, your only difficulty may be the Banshee as it's hard to kill as it flies away if you try to stick it with a grenade or shoot it, you can use the Missile pod but if there isn't one to hand you can use the neat little trick: Go down to one of the landing platforms with a plasma pistol, charge up the plasma pistol to full, wait until the Banshee is in range as the a charged plasma pistol is homing, it should hit the Banshee and cut out its engines causing the Banshee to fall, I recommend you shoot the Banshee when it's flying away otherwise it may land on the platform and just start up again, meaning you've wasted some plasma pistol energy.
- If you decide to hold the tunnels, then you will probably be burned by Brute Stalkers, which can be hard to detect and even harder to avoid once they enter the tunnels, stuck by grenades, once the Catch Skull comes into play, or caught by Kamikaze Grunts.
- If you are playing solo, a good way to survive is just to hold up in the central room. This effectively "funnels" the Covenant.
- The Sniper Rifle is not very useful in this map. Try to utilize the Noob Combo, as it is most effective against Brutes. A Carbine is also a good choice, but once the Famine Skull kicks in, you are going to have some difficulty in keeping an ample supply of ammunition. To kill Brutes and Jackals, you can use the Noob Combo. Use a Missile Pod or a Rocket Launcher to deal with Chieftains and Hunters. Note: During the final wave, the Sniper Rifle can become vastly important, for getting rid of any enemies which will cause you a great deal of trouble, such as the abundance of Brutes which are dropped off.
- A great hiding spot is underneath the escalator. Usually you can sneak out for quick assassinations.
- The interesting thing about this map is even though the Sniper Rifle isn't very useful, you will never find a moment where you run out of ammo. In fact, there are about three boxes of Sniper ammunition around the map, one located near the Shotgun, another located near the spare rockets, and a third and final box located near the hallway on the left, facing the incoming Phantoms courtyard which leads to the lower docking area. You can also find some more spare rockets inside the center building.
- A good idea is to stay on the top level of the map, hopping between the left and right ledges using the central building as cover when thing get a little too dangerous. Falling back into the top room of the level allows you to choose where your opponents run instead of them choosing where you go, as well as allow you to keep your Pistol and SMG fully stocked.
- You can make a Banshee fall out of the sky and die by overcharging the plasma pistol, however, you will not get the Double Kill as with other vehicle kills in the game, only the Brute pilot will be scored.
- The SMG can make short work of Drones. It is advised to keep one near should a swarm of Drones appear.
- Another helpful strategy is to hold up in the large room across from where you spawn. There are two health packs for easy taking, the windows are indestructible, and the room is small so when chieftains come, you can easily assassinate them if you have two or more players. Also when you are in this room, try to push the large table against the door to make a great barrier.
- You can easily get a Spree Medals or Multi-Kill Medals from a heavy weapon if you aim the troops that are coming down from the Phantom at the landing pads.
- Main article: Firefight: Windward (Achievement)
Score over 200,000 total points on this map to unlock the Firefight: Windward achievement worth 10 gamerscore. This can be obtained online or solo on any difficulty, making it a rather easy achievement to obtain.
- Windward is currently the only Firefight map in which the player starts with a Sniper Rifle as a primary weapon rather than spawning with the default load being the Silenced SMG and Magnum.
- There is a face visible on the side of the cliff below the rocket launcher spawn.
- If the player looks on the floor inside on the upstairs health room, there are two different ID Badges that have photos of Bungie employees on them.