How to take Halo 3 Reference PicsEdit

Just thought I'd add this to help out the folks that have asked me about how to take the best Halo 3 pics for the wiki.

Link your Gamertag to Bungie.netEdit

Your Xbox LIVE account must be linked to Bungie's site in-order for the screenshots to get saved, so that MUST come first. Go to and Sign-in in the upper right corner.. once you've linked your accounts, you no longer need to be signed-in DURING your picture taking.. you'd just need to sign-in to go pick up the resulting pictures.

Choose what pics to take, and sign off on themEdit

Go to the Reference Discussion Page and take a look at the large list of images needed. Pick one that hasn't been done yet, and add a note next to the ONE item you're going to do next. (ie- <--I'm doing this one next ~~~~)

Go set-up some PicturesEdit

I like to use forge because I can control the situation better, for Spartan Ref pics, but be sure to turn-off the "teams" gametype.. Pics in team games are either all blue, or all red.. For anything else, I prefer Campaign because the better quality models are there. Ideally you want to choose a level that has the stuff you're looking for, right near the beginning of the level, or level section. You need to get your character kinda' NEAR the thing you want to photograph, but that's it... in theater you can fly around quite a bit.
If it's a weapon, your best bet is to grab the weapon, and then look down and grenade yourself to death.. that way your weapon goes flying, and in theater, you can see it from all sides, plus partially fly through it to see specal surface angles and stuff you sometimes wouldn't notice in a regular set of pics.

Go TAKE the picturesEdit

You have to be online when you take the shots for them to upload.
Go to the Theater Lobby and select the film you made while setting up the pictures. It should be in "Recent Films" unless you saved it. If you saved it, it'll be in "Campaign" or "Multiplayer". If you saved only part of the film (which you can only do with things filmed in Multiplayer or Forge), it will be in "Film Clips".
In the Halo 3 theater. If you press the "X" button while watching a film, the camera controls pop up.. Leave them on! They won't show-up in the pics. Move to the left-most option.. that's the screenshot button. Get your camera "unattached" by pressing "Y" and pull the Right trigger to speed-up time, and release it to stop "time" and then float around and take pics. The Left-Trigger will speed up your camera's movements.
If you click the right-thumbstick you will Zoom-in.. This allows you to take closeups without too much warping.. it's like a wide-angle lens. However, always remember that the center of your picture is accurate, and the closer to the edges of your picture you get, the more warped the image becomes.. but it's not enough warpage to mess up close-up shots.
If you don't use the zoom, and get too close to your target, it'll do goofy warping things to the image.
Also, closeups of guns are possible during explosions that throw them into the air.. that way the model is temporarily not completely solid, and the bounding box is different.
(Look at the assault rifle ref pics for an example).
Always try to include reference points in your pics.. so someone knows if your pic is taken at an angle, or how deep dents are, etc.. Just something recognizable in the pics, like maybe a distinctive button or something.. Just get a few that include the "landmark features" so that you CAN get closer because your pics will be more recognizable.
Also, it sometimes takes work to do correctly, but try to get a shot that aligns the camera with the object as much as possible. I try and do that on all objects, parts of armor, etc. You're trying to position the camera so that it's in line with the center of the object, and aiming the camera so that it's also aimed at the center of the object. You'll probably use it as a thumbnail pic later on.
On a character (like the Brute Cheiftain), get a few shots that show front/back/side/top, WHILE THEY ARE ALIVE. Then pick a part of the armor and focus on all sides of that single piece.. then move to the next piece. If they have a gun on their back, you need to get them to take it off in the game. You can take death shots after the live shots, but sometimes the costumes change a bit (helmets slide around, all kinds of stuff).
Remember.. you can take up to 50 pictures, but only the LAST 34 or so will get uploaded. Personally, I try to count my shots and stop after 30.. it won't tell you when you've passed the 34 point, and you're likely to lose some pics unless you keep track. I've sometimes found the best pics ever, just as I hit 34.. that sucks because you have to leave the film in-order to delete extra pics.. But at least you can take another few pics before you reach the 50 limit.. Just be sure to download the 34 pics before taking those extra shots (to reach 50).. that way you won't have to leave the film until you hit the 50.

Retrieve your PicturesEdit

Go to, sign-in, then click on the "Halo 3" option under your sign-in information in the upper right corner... then choose "screenshots", and you'll find the last 34 shots you've taken.. click on one of them and you'll get a medium-sized image.. click on THAT image, and you'll download a super-sized version of the image.
Personally, I take 30 shots, download them through, and then go back to my xbox, start up Halo 3 and erase the screenshots.. (go to "settings".. "Screenshots" and then press "X", press up, press "A", then press up and press "A" again.. (following onscreen prompts). you can do it quickly though and even though it's not showing the shots as you delete them, it's still doing it.
Download the pics, then clear the pics off your character (on your xbox, because you can't delete pics online).

Adjust your picsEdit

Now that's you've downloaded the pics, you should brighten them, so that you're getting the maximum amount of detail in them.
Choose one picture that represents the overall item. Make a copy of it, 100 pixels tall, preferrably in PNG format. This becomes your Thumbnail for the Wiki entry.
Now zip all of the other pictures up, and ensure the name reflects the contents (ie- SniperRifle for picks of the Sniper Rifle). Giveame the thumbnail image the same name.

Put your pictures on the WikiEdit

Next, either Host the file yourself, or contact Vrogy who can help you with this step.
Then (For now) put the links at the bottom of the Reference Discussion Page, and I'll get it onto the main Reference Page.

Update the Discussion PageEdit

Go back to the References Discussion page, and take off the note stating which item you were going to do next. Go ahead and strike-thru the item you took pictures of, and put another mark on there (ie - <-- AWAITING ADDITION ~~~~) (Always use the ~~~~ to put your signature on there)

We'll take it from there.

Thank you SO much for contributing to the Wiki, we all add our bits and pieces and see how this place grows.

Need more Help?Edit

Hope that helps, I'll certainly be glad for the assistance on here. If you have further questions, or this section isn't clear, don't hesitate to ask me (preferrably through a 405th PM to "Deadguy"). Deadguy71 13:37, 25 May 2008 (UTC)

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