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The Halo Story

News Archive

February 19, 2004

Nasty, Brute-ish, and short: 3 way battles and talk of dissension

Bobman ( writes:

I was reading the Press Scans of Edge's September 2002 Halo 2 article, and it said that Halo 2 will incorporate the three-sided battles (like Flood vs. Humans vs. Covenant) with more alien races... like the Brutes. Does this mean that the Brutes are not all with the Covenant?

Perhaps there will be some sort of disagreement between the Elites and the Prophets, resulting in the Brutes and Elites fighting? Other posts and emails have come to the conclusion that perhaps the Brutes are the personal bodyguards of the Prophets. If this is true, I wonder who exactly the Hunters, Grunts, and Jackals are going to follow?

The article's wording is somewhat ambiguous, but the possibility remains. The Brutes seem to occupy a unique niche within the Covenant hierarchy: temple guardians and protectors (a seemingly important post), and yet the Elite guard is shocked that a Brute (Tartarus) is allowed to approach the High Prophet. And what of their scheming, behind closed doors as well as the backs of the Elites themselves? If the Elites do develop a problem with their present "arrangement" with the Prophets, and the Brutes (like Tartarus) back the High Ones, we may be in for some real mayhem. We've been looking forward to fighting alongside Spartans in Halo 2, but with (and against) Elites as well!?

Is deanero's dream of Grunt liberation finally at hand? ;)

permalink | Treachery


War! What is good for? Absolutely nothin'! Say it again! Hah!

Jon Busse ( and Patrick Corkery ( write:

The reason, I think, why the Covenant fight is due to the careful manipulations of the Prophets. The Prophets, being as skilled as they are at assuming the role of commanding, and being as extremely intelligent as they appear to be, knew that a civilization with nothing to do is not a stable one. As George Orwell noticed, a population works better and diplays more loyalty in a state of war. During a war, the people are focused only on supporting their side, the youngsters can only think of going off to battle. The war on Humanity satisfies them. Fortunately for the Prophets, the Humans just happened to be a somewhat formidable opponent who is capable of holding its own, or at least for a while.


As Caesar reasoned, having an army with nothing to do is worse than having an army at war. Caesar, after defeating the Britons in 60-50 BC, made his army build a wall stretching from one coast to another, simply to keep the Roman legions occupied. Is it not possible that the Covenant army was/is simply bored?

Or is simply being kept occupied, perhaps while the Prophets continue with their own little agenda? Some trickery is afoot; what further strife will they stir up, and for who?

(And though the title of her post lacks grace of any sort, Jillybean ( also offers some historical amendments pertaining to the particular case of Hadrian's wall. :-P

permalink | The Covenant


Witness to the light

Alex Silva ( writes:

I was looking at all the stuff people wrote about religious things about Halo from the bible:

Halo-John was witness to the Holy Light other Spartans found in the mines of Reach.

The Bible- John was to bear witness of the light.

Hmmm... John 117 the Baptist. It does add more credibility to this particular connection.

permalink | The Master Chief


Swords, swords, swords!
Which are good? Which are bad?
Swords, swords, swords!
Ask your Mom or ask your Dad...

None None/Snark Hunter ( writes:

What we know already:

Many medieval myths and legends speak of a supernatural swordsmith, who has had the names (among others) Wayland, Wieland, and Volund. He was referred to on the Halo Story Page as Ogier.

The main heroes of many Continental and Norse nations all wielded swords that were made by Volund. We have encountered two of these swords in Bungie games so far: Durandal (wielded by Count Roland) in Marathon, and Cortana (or Courtain, wielded by Holger Dansk of Denmark) in Halo

Volund the swordsmith made other blades as well. These included Tizona (wielded by El Cid of Spain), Mimung (wielded by Dietrich of the Osthogoths), Balmung (wielded by Sigmund of the Norse), and, most importantly in this situation, Joyeuse (wielded in different legends by Sir Lancelot du Lac of Arthurian fame and Emperor Charlemagne).

We are told in the Song of Roland that upon the blade of Durandal was written "I am of the same temper as Cortana and Joyeuse".

What can be inferred:

Two of these three swords have been featured in Bungie games as independant and possibly (definitely, in Durandal's case) rampant AI's. Can we expect to see a third in the future? If Bungie indeed intends to continue this pattern (we all know how dearly Bungie loves story patterns), then maybe Joyeuse will make his/her appearance in Halo 2 (hopefully) or another game.

P.S For those who are interested: the elvish swordsmith should not be called Ogier (I think), because that is the more well-known name for the Danish hero Holger Dansk.

Glad you cleared that up. Thanks! :)

(Ooh, ooh! And don't forget Miranda/Mirandoise! ;)

permalink | Rampant Speculation


The dead, saints, Mary, the Christ, etc.

Nate Stilgoe ( writes:

Just a couple random thoughts concerning Trautmann's question, "Who or what would wear a halo?"

Not to take it too literally, but angels wear halos. Not that that makes much sense at all...

Maybe we shouldn't be thinking of who or what wears a halo, but instead, who or what wears a ring? All kinds of people wear rings. Maybe Installation 04 is a wedding ring, and it's been left behind by the Forerunners right before they crossed the "Threshold" (that gas giant in the background)? Who knows.

Well somebody does; they wrote of it on the forum! Hmm... We'll get to the bottom of this Eric(s)! ::fist raised to the sky::

permalink | Rampant Speculation


343's "lost time" and inquisitiveness during The Maw seen in a fascinating new light...

Leigh Thompson ( writes:

"Cortana had to finally admit to herself that she didn't have the power to contend with a possible enemy artificial construct. She had absorbed a tremendous volume of data from halos systems: eons' worth of records on halos engineering and maintenance, the xenobiology of the flood and every scrap of information on the mysterious "forerunners" the covenant revered so much. The information would take her a week of non-stop processing to examine, collate, codify? let alone understand." -First Strike P65 lines 24 - 31

Once Cortana downloaded all the data from Halo's core, she stored it for investigation later. This download bloated her, and slowed down her operations. She had not herself however collated this data, which she stored.

When, however, 343GS probed her in The Maw:

343 GUILTY SPARK: "Ridiculous! That you would imbue a warship's AI with such a wealth of knowledge! Weren't you worried it might be captured? Or destroyed?"

CORTANA: "He's in my data arrays, a local tap!"

343 GUILTY SPARK: "You can't imagine how exciting this is! To have a record of all of our lost time! Human history, is it? Fascinating." ... "Oh how I will enjoy every moment of its categorization! And to think that you would destroy this installation. As well as this record. I am shocked. Almost too shocked for words."

343GS appeared to have collated some of this data contained within Cortana. What is interesting is that maybe Guilty Spark have never had the pleasure of perusing the Halo's vast database: "Protocol does not allow units with my classification to? perform a task as important as the reunification of the index with the core."

After all, he is disgusted when he discovers Cortana in the core: "A construct?! In the core?! That is absolutely unacceptable!"

This was his first time he could put all of the pieces together. He is shocked. Why? Has he realised that Humans are indeed somehow related to the Forerunner in some way, he understands the Chiefs apparent irrational behaviour; i.e. why he has poor weapons to combat the flood and only has a class 2 battle skin, and to top it off; that the reclaimer is about to destroy the installation along with the original record of the lost time.

By the end of Halo the only person to fully understand what's going on is indeed 343 Guilty Spark.

A truly impressive interpretation of these events; that the data 343 was viewing were the very Forerunner records he was not able to access in all his years of monitoring Installation 04 and its shrouded and ever revered Core. What other conclusions has he come to I wonder? Excellent thinking :)

permalink | Monitors


February 3, 2004

Ask an ambiguous question, get an ambiguous answer.

The not-at-all-brothers Eric, Nylund and Trautmann, have finally responded to our alternating fits of whining and threatening, and have even thrown in several real answers with the Cease and Desist order to boot. Of course if you were privy to the list of questions originally submitted for their consideration... well, let us just be thankful the blackmail op went as well as it did ;)

As for Eric Trautmann's Halo clue, this surfaced during one of our email forays, more specifically after a list of notes on the novels was run by him. The full message reads like a slap in the face, er, reads like so:

"And I'm gratified that some of the more subtle stuff I finagled into H:FS doesn't look like its been stumbled upon.

heh heh heh.

Hm. Perhaps a hint is in order. Who or what would wear a "Halo"?

Regarding the answer's unwitting mention on the forum:

This is quite "cold" apparently; not what he had in mind. Think First Strike and the novels specifically. "Eggs" of a different colour, if you will; not those that necessarily reveal the Tru7h, but that add a new layer of depth to certain segments and allusions...

Let the games begin. I'm sure that Nylund and E.T. are already enjoying the attention ;)

permalink | Rampant Speculation


King Under the Mountain: A Tolkien Perspective

Mike Elliott ( writes:

Quoting from the Encyclopedia of Arda (the online Tolkien encyclopedia, if you've never heard of it):

The title taken by Thr?in I, founder of the Dwarf-kingdom at Erebor, the Lonely Mountain, and maintained by those Kings of Durin's Folk who dwelt there. The line was broken twice, once by Thorin I (he and four generations of his descendants ruled from the Grey Mountains, not Erebor), and once by the dragon Smaug (who claimed the title for himself). In both cases, the line was restored to a rightful heir.

In both cases, the line was restored to a rightful heir.

(Going out on a limb...) This could very well be a reference to the Master Chief--I'm willing to bet (not a large sum of money, mind you, but still bet)--aka "The Reclaimer". Since Guilty Spark has clearly seen the Master Chief/John-117 or someone like him before, is it possible the the Master Chief is the second rightful heir--the second reclaimer?

Excellent. How then, if at all, could this relate to the Covenant's "Ninth Age of Reclamation", a line with obvious portent and relationship to the Master Chief's title?

permalink | Rampant Speculation


Key words from The Fall of Reach just begging to be speculated on...

Infininja ( writes:

I was recently re-reading the Fall of Reach, then stopped to read First Strike, and I picked it up where I left off, quite near the end. I must've started around pg. 281, because that transmission really caught my eye.

Based on the location, it seems to be from humans (I started out thinking maybe there could have been a section of Covenant, or for all we know, Forerunner, working with ONI) but it's the codenames that really caught my eye. COALMINER, of course, brings me back to the Forerunner facilities deep underground Reach, as described in First Strike. SURGEON and HYPODERMIC almost make me think of a splinter faction, or at least, a special group such as ONI slipping into and out of things.

Now, this is all me just speculating wildly (people say rampant too much ;)), but with all the intelligence ONI is supposed to have, it seems stupid for them to put a ship out there, which no one is supposed to know about, with NAV data intact. They had counterintrusion software put in, was that just to stop the AI from detecting them, or were they possibly expecting Covenant and trying to stop them from gathering the data?

And with that, was the first Covenant 'AI' really heard from in First Strike? Perhaps those data invasion packets on page 302 were actually just parts of a much larger 'being.'

A "transient AI" was detected... Cortana/UNSC AI, or the Covenant scoping out their prey from the system's edge as is their custom?

Also, who would this ONI ship be planning on tailing, or inserting for that matter? Are they following the Spartans in, planting their own agent, or could this be a rival mission?

permalink | ONI


Sons of Thunder

Josh "LostRock" Bornstein ( writes:

In Mark chapter 3, Jesus appoints the twelve apostles.

verse 17: James son of Zebedee and his brother John (to them [Jesus] gave the name Boanerges, which means Sons of Thunder)

Let's play a game of "Six Degrees of Mjolnir": John and James--Boanerges--Thunder--Thor--Mjolnir! (Don't forget, the Twelve Apostles were appointed to "drive out demons"...or perhaps the Covenant?)

Concerning Halo, I find it odd that John is mentioned in a secondary manner. Perhaps there will be an important role to come for our MIA pal James.

MIA indeed. Now he has to make a comeback! Good eye :)

permalink | SPARTAN


Chiron Don't Make Change

Ryan Hunt ( writes:

Hi story dudes,

Last night I was just running through the multiplayer maps again, and noticed the description of the level Chiron TL-34 which we've all seen a million times before... it said Spartan CLONE training facility.
Now, this could mean only two things:

1) That the Spartan-IIs are clones themselves or,
2) The information Halsey found in First Strike really was the discovery of a new Spartan-cloned team.

ONI or the UNSC or both made those flash clones of the original Spartans in order to quickly hand them back to their parents before too much suspicion arose, but why would they (ONI, UNSC) waste money on a special training facility when they obviously didn't particularly care too much about the flash clones in the first place?

I'd go out on a limb and say that Ackerson (the guy that stole the genetic information of the Spartans) probably got the DNA of the Spartans that showed extraordinary skill in one task or another, meaning since Kelly was the fastest of the Spartans, he got her speed. Presumably this would also mean that he would get whatever was in Linda's genes that made her the best sniper for the team, and maybe he even got the information in Sam's genes (may he RIP... or not?) that caused him to be the strongest.

Add this up and you can see that we're more than likely going to meeting up with some super-Spartans in Halo 2... but the real question is whether or not these guys will be fighting with us, or against us. Knowing Ackerson's reputation of disdain for the Spartan-IIs, it's certainly not looking good... but at least we have our trusty Mjolnir MK VI battle suits! (I wonder†what†"level"†Guilty Spark would place the MK VI at if the V was 2?)

This clone reference may or may not be of the same ilk as another point brought up concerning this level: If Chiron has teleporters, does that mean that Humanity possesses teleportation technology, or is it merely a matter of gameplay?

Id est, is the name of this Clone Training facility a peak into deeper things, or a mere naming oversight? Hmmm. This one could go either way...

That darn Ackerson...

permalink | SPARTAN


I believe in preserving the environment for our children, but not our children's children, because I don' think children should be...

celo ( writes:

If Halo kills any organism with sufficient biomass and cognitive ability then what happens to organisms that have insufficient biomass and don't have cognitive ability. When Halo was fired long time ago it killed all life of sufficient biomass but it spared the insufficient biomass life forms (kids, baby's etc.), because flood would not mutate life forms that are weak and small. If my theory is true then it might explain why 343 GS says "I am grateful to see that some of them survived to reproduce".

A fantastic idea, mentioned first by Warbow in the murky depths of forum history, and now born anew. This possibility seemingly removes the need for a species to "re-evolve" after a Halo firing. The adolescent and adult population of a race is removed, but their young are left with at least a small chance of survival, albeit without any knowledge of how to use the civilization they have been bequeathed. Although, the rather long effective dormancy of the Flood does still seem to be of some concern...

permalink | Halo Installations


Stop Cyborg Exploitation Now! Fair Wages! Union Equity!

Nick Yacono ( writes:

"Dylan Oldenburg once wrote:

At the end of Halo, 343 Guilty Spark is shown to be alive, in space. There has been speculation about what he will do now. After realizing that your plan to neutralize the Flood was successful, he would hold no grudge against you, being an AI."

Even though this goes back into Marathon history, I think my point is still quite relevant to the Halo story line since it is about AI constructs.

If you recall poor, Tycho. Betrayed by Durandal, handed over to alien hands, studied, probed and disected; he seemed a little upset after all was said and done. He forged P'fhor military IDs, called in several vessels of the P'fhor navy and sent many, many soldiers to their death all for his revenge on Durandal.

I may be out of step, but it sounds to me like Tycho may have been holding a bit of a grudge.

As for the flood being neutralized...who said that? I saw Halo blow up, but his mission was to assure that they would never escape the installation. It's quite clear how "adaptable" the flood are. And if simply blowing up the ring was enough to finish them, why rig the thing to take out a whole galaxy?

Everyone seems to assume that 343GS left Halo because his mission was complete. I think he failed. And if I was an ancient construct with a failed mission objective and a fervish interest in Human/Forerunner history, I know where I'd go and I know the first person I'd look up when I got there. Bungie's AI's seem to have a nasty habit of abusing cyborgs for their own means.

Plus...343GS is just what the MC needs to get from planet to planet quickly in Halo 2. But that's just me dreaming again.

Not to mention that the Flood may be extant in more than a single location in the galaxy. A disconcerting truth for us, and for 343, one that may require urgent monitoring.

343 can certainly teleport around Halo with ease. Let's see what other tricks he has up his... ahem... sleeves ;)

permalink | Monitors


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