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December 4, 2006

I can't help it, I really like the whole Gravemind-Marathon idea. I know it's silly and contradicts some Bungie statements, but I like it God Damn it and I have the pretty upload button.

UrsusArctos ( writes:

Narcogen pointed out that Gravemind has parallels with the Jjaro AI Thoth in Marathon. Both are directly connected to the ancient race that started it all(Jjaro/Forerunner), and both merge with an AI that has been giving orders to and helping out the player (Durandal/Cortana). And they both speak in verse.

The Marathon Story Page mentions a secret terminal called "My Own Private Thermopylae" (Thermopylae! Uh-oh...), and it had this to say about Thoth.

"Beware. The mythical Thoth was concerned
with maintaining the balance between
creation and destruction, yes and no, light
and darkness, not the triumph of one over
the other.

Do you remember the days when computers
were simple, unreasoning things you could
turn off and on like flashlights? Is
memory what we perceived or what we want?
What does Thoth think? He concerns himself
with the states of off and on, good and
evil. Isn't his perception simple?
Doesn't it have to be?

I will return."

If Gravemind and the Flood are in Thoth's role, might they have been brought into existence to bring order to the universe? If the Forerunner spread all over the galaxy along with Sentient life, all life in the galaxy and perhaps even the universe could been snuffed out, irredeemably, by the Forerunner/Sentient Life expansion. As a result, a particular entity or agency created the Flood, who spread all over the Forerunner domains, consuming all sentient life. But the flood turned out to be so powerful that they threatened to do the same thing that the Forerunner did-bring an end to all life in the galaxy, and in much less time. The flood are somehow dependent on the existence of life in the galaxy, so that they become more potent when more sentient life exists, and starve to death in the absence of any sentient life.

As a consequence, the Halo superweapons and the Ark came into existence to save all life from the Flood threat.(In the podcast, Sketch says something like "Halo 3 is going to be about the agency that built the Ark", I think around 11:51)

About Gravemind? Considering that he's been there a while and knows enough to understand that wiping out all sentient life will starve the flood of a food source anyways, he waits patiently deep in the bowels of Delta Halo along with the Flood, so that he can create a balanced universe where he and his flood can exist for millenia in equilibrium with humanity and other flood food, and without the threat of starvation either way.

Notice that, like Thoth, Gravemind does seem to go on the side of the underdog. Even though he was acting in the best interests of the Flood, he did send Master Chief and the Arbiter back to a position where they could do what they did best. Gravemind sees everything in terms of 'flood' and 'flood food' and he's intent on keeping that balance between the two(Hence no flood in the Control Room where they could've stopped Tartarus from firing the ring).

One more verse by Thoth that should tickle someone's fancy-

i was left behind

our paths conv^rge

our fates are shared

chance tears and bends

I was left behind? We know that both controllable characters (Arbiter and MC) are "left behind" in one way or the other.

Thoth:"Our paths converge. Our fates are shared."

Gravemind:"Fate had us meet as foes, but this ring will make us brothers."


Lots of people have questioned the apparent Forerunner/Flood link before. In fact there was a theory in the batch I chose not to update with. I thought it was interesting to see it here.

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