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The Halo Story

News Archive

July 24, 2003

Here you go, Story fanatics. Dive in. :-)

Bob Cringle ( writes:

Hey I was reading some of the other post on the story page and what if the Forerunner were actually water breathers. Think about it! The control is in a canyon that seems to be snowing all of the time. What if there was a malfunction in the environmental systems and really the snow is supposed to be water so that the Forerunner can breath. And also the Silent Cartographer is a piec of tall rock n the middle of an ocean. If that doesn't sound relistic then what about if the flood were origninally supposed to be allergic to water ie. if the went in it they would die. That would explain my earlier comments. That would also explain why the flood containment facility is a swamp (possibly a recently dried lake) Also that would explain why the entrances to all the major centres are underground and have well sealed doors. Another thing that I think goes along with my theory is that there is an opening in the top of the Silent Cartographer that an aircraft is able to fly into. Coincidence? I think not. Anyways thats just my 2 cents.

What if thats the reason Earth is covered in so much water? Mabye the forerunner dropped us here because they thought we would evolve into water breathers as well. Also mabye thats why the covenant (who might also be decendents from the Forerunner) look so different from us. Mabye the originall Covenant are actually water breathers.

The 'Forerunner seeding the galaxy' concept fits in nicely with this.

permalink | The Forerunner


Thoughts on an ONI conspiracy, Flood diet and hibernation, events leading up to a sucessful firing of the Halo, and Guilty Spark seemingly jumping the gun...

In case you didn't have enough to chew on, Socrates has come back from the dead with a characteristically well-written and comprehensive dialogue. ;-)

Socrates ( writes:

First off, a little bit about the meaning of Cortanas body and eye color in the opening scene of Two Betrayals. If I recall correctly, theres been some speculation that either or both are indications that Cortana had gone rampant after being inside Halos computer core for so long; this theory has been effectively shot down by others, but I wish to add another nail in that particular coffin. On page 233 of The Fall of Reach, Mr. Nylund writes The hue of her skin varied from navy blue to lavender, depending on her mood and the ambient lighting. Granted, it says nothing about Cortanas eyes, but I see no reason why that information on Cortanas mood (or perhaps emotional state) could not be extended to cover her eyes, as well (no pun intended).

Then there is Mr. Nylunds writing on page 241, which directly deals with the speculation that ONI had been in contact or had observed the Covenant for a great deal of time before the known opening of hostilities. From the mouth of Dr. Halsey and the writing of Mr. Nylund comes the evidence. Near the bottom of the page, in her speech to the Spartans, Halsey says, Our own attempts to decipher Covenant computer systems have only been partially successful, despite our best efforts and decades of time. (Emphasis mine) Earlier on that same page, it is revealed that John-117 has been in combat for at ten years, and fighting the covenant for that amount of time, or less (after a decade of fighting, his instincts were to kill first and get the details later.). John fought against rebels and the like before he joined the fight against the Covenant, and he was fighting the rebels before the first Covenant attack. Thus, we may deduct that the first known conflict with the Covenant began ten or fewer years before 2552, and when Nylund writes of Dr. Halsey speaking about ONIs attempts at deciphering Covenant computer networks, he is leaving in plain sight the information that the Covenant were under Human study (and perhaps vice-versa) many, many years before the public knew about it.

Now, on to The Flood and Installation 04.

In the past, Ive stated my belief that the Ranger forms of The Flood are the original forms, that they take over a hosts body to create the other three (known) forms. Ive done a bit more thinking, and Id like to add a bit ot my original theory. The Flood, I believe, are extremely advanced parasites. Once they incapacitate a host, they inject a chemical which both paralyzes the hosts control of its body and allows for Flood to essentially telepathically take over the hosts mind as well as its body; this I think Ive said, before. What Id like to add is that I do not believe that the host body is decomposing, though thats what it looks like. Rather, I believe that the Flood embedded in the host is consuming it, much in the same manner that a spider consumes a fly. The Flood injects a chemical which breaks down protein bonds, and then uses the hosts own lymphatic system to move the food slush up to where the Ranger can feed on it.

This could explain why The Flood go dormant when theres not a being of sufficient size and mental capacity around; perhaps The Flood need a LOT of food to remain in an active state, and perhaps they need a certain level of mental capacity to make that telepathic link which allows them to control the host. Without the presence of a being with both of those qualifications, The Flood remain in a dormant state, perhaps not unlike the hibernation of a bear.

That leads me directly into my next piece of speculation. I believe that Halo, and all its sister installations, was designed to be an unmanned research facility. Nowhere in the either game or books is there a mention of the Forerunner actually being present on/in the installations when the research facilities were active. Perhaps The Flood, by their nature, are too dangerous to be dealt with when theres a potential host nearby. This would explain the control panels well above the floor in the Library, the Sentinels not being equipped to handle the larger Flood, Halos ability to eliminate every potential food source for The Flood, and even the blue beams seen in the level Halo.

Before I go further, let me explain those last two. First, The Flood food elimination part. As suggested by another, Halos firing effect may not by necessity destroy every living being of sufficient mass within its maximum area of effect (and perhaps the other rings have to be able to detect another rings destructive wave(?) in order for them to fire and thereby wipe the galaxy clean of Flood food). If such as the case, Halos ability to eliminate potential hosts for the Flood could be seen not, as Cortana put it, as a cudgel, but as a last-chance fail-safe. If someone gives The Flood a means of escape (a ship), and The Flood manage to take over the vessel, make it space-worthy, and launch it, Halos systems would detect this and fire, so as to keep the Flood from finding another host before they starve to death. Though its entirely too possible that the rings would wipe all living things of sufficient mass (I dont know how a pulse from a Halo could distinguish between a species with sufficient mental capacity to be Flood food and another species of similar size, but without that mental capacity) from the galaxy just to be safe, whatever Halo was breached might also be able to simply wipe out all life of a certain size within the Flood-seized ships maximum range, plus a few dozen light-years, just to be safe. Halo may not be a club to beat a specific target over the head with, but it could be something more along the lines of a neutron bomb, which eliminates life but leaves everything else mostly intact.

Additionally, this would explain why Guilty Spark needs John to retrieve the Index before he can fire the ring; the ring would automatically fire once The Flood escape Halo, but Guilty Spark, having gone more than just a little insane, decides he wants to fire Halo before The Flood even have a chance of escaping. Since he is not allowed by protocol (his programming and/or abilities) to do this by himself, he gets John to bring the Index to the control center for him and then, not trusting John to insert the Index himself, takes the Index and inserts it before John could chicken out or start asking questions. Guilty Spark, it seems, is more than just a little paranoid, and perhaps delusional as well.

Second, I believe that the blue beams seen in the level Halo are part of Halos defense system; Halo, built to study and observe The Flood, would not need to have surface-to-space weaponry except to prevent any ship from landing and thereby creating a means of escape for The Flood. Covenant troops hit the ground on Halo first (as evidenced in Halo: The Flood through Covenant ghost patrols already being set up before the Pillar of Autumns escape pods even land), and thereby activated The Flood. This fits in with Cortanas line about how the Covenant should have known, and that there must have been signs; I dont know about anyone else, but huge security doors everywhere, automated anti-spacecraft fire, etc. would tell me that poking around, no less landing, would be a Very Bad Idea.

And this brings me to the Library, which I believe to be another part of Halos security system. For whatever reason, its obvious that one cannot simply teleport right next to the Index and grab it. Therefore, anything which wanted to grab the index would need to get through all those huge security doors, which require something like Guilty Spark to open them, in order to get to the Index, which is the equivalent of a submarine commanders key; it needs to be present in the Control Center before the ring will fire without a Flood escape. The Index being needed in order to fire the ring would explain the Flood presence (all those flood are actually trying to help guard it, so that someone cant simply grab it and activate Halo, thereby spoiling The Floods spread and survival.

Seeing that I've now written two pages of speculation, Im going to cut it short here, with only the addition that Guilty Spark, as a tool of the research system, is genuinely glad to see that The Flood survived.

Good job on the ONI info from The Fall of Reach, and I especially like the thoughts on 343 Guilty Spark's delusional paranoia. Nice!

permalink | Halo Installations


Rose Shiflett ( writes:

Yesterday, while playing through Assault on the Control Room on the normal difficulty setting, I had reached the control room's outermost entrance. And was attacked by the two Hunters, however, instead of using my pistol, I used the assult rifle and fired at their exposed backs. What happened was shocking, after having downed the two hunters, I saw the telltale sign of Flood presence, however there were no flood. Instead I discovered that when shot in the back with the assult rifle, the Hunters spout their own orange blood, and the green flood blood. Glitch? or is that telling us something?

Well, there has been some speculation as to why the Hunters aren't represented among the Flood's warrior class. There's also the fact that the Hunters remain aloof from their Covenant counterparts in areas such as the last valley in Two Betrayals. Might be a connection. Or, might be a limited number of blood decals available in-game. ;-)

permalink | The Covenant


Kodos ( writes:

There has been a little confusion over wether Flood infest living or dead specimens. For the most part, it seems to be the Dead, but, if we listen to the crazed marine, we hear that they "took the live ones". Perhaps this Marine just went unnoticed and got lucky? Or perhaps not.

Perhaps as time goes by in the game, the Flood are regenerting.

Think, they have been stuck in Halo, with no Food for what? Centuries? Eons?

Starvation weakens life.

Perhaps when they first came out they where weak, and only able to infect living things, but as time went on, and as they became more "alive" they learned(remembered?) to infect dead bodies as well.

And, given a choice between fighting to infect a live body, or simply waltzing over an infecting a dead one, well, I think the decision is obvious.

And as for evidence for them being weak when they come out, keep in mind, it takes a while before they start using projectile weapons. Thankfully they never learn(remember?) to use vehicles

Flood in Warthogs? Very scary ^_^

Scary? Terrifying! Also, that's an interesting idea about "waking up" and remembering more sophisticated ways of spreading. Imagine if the Flood had more time to organize themselves. ;-)

permalink | The Flood


Erica Carr ( writes:

I've recently started to read all of the theories and speculations in the Halo Story vaults, and it's come to my attention that the general Halo-crazed public has two views regarding the Flood: they are adaptive and continually gain knowledge or they are simply parasitic and are controlled by one central figure. I am of the opinion that they are incredibly adaptive at an almost alarming rate. 343 Guilty Spark, our favorite rampant AI bot, mentions in The Library that, "The Flood are already hard at work repairing your vessel. Its parasitic nature belies the Flood's intelligence." The second sentence is obvious to me, but the first is intriguing. By "your vessel", 343 GS apparently means the Pillar of Autumn. I asked myself why the Flood would want to repair a human vessel, and they of course just want to find sentient life to overtake. Ok, in the Truth and Reconciliation the "Keyes Blob" was there presumably to gather knowledge and, I believe, to find out how to fly the craft out of there. If the Flood were also repairing the PoA in order to fly off of Halo, then how come there's not another Blob there? I would assume that it's because the Flood didn't capture another important human, but they would find someone wouldn't they?

P.S.-I think it's important to note that I'm one of the few devoted Halo female fans out there. Cortana is my hero!

Who's to say that the Flood weren't trying to repair both vessels, hmm? It seems to me that an intelligent race would use each and every resource at its disposal in order to get off the Halo and out into the galaxy.

And, lest we forget, Cortana rules. :-)

permalink | The Flood


Deep breaths, everyone. Here comes another big one...

Wado SG ( writes:

First, I believe that the term used by the Covenant for the ancient race that built Halo translates to the Forerunners (as confirmed by Cortana when she first enters Halo's core). If the ancient race were the gods of the Covenant, they would not be called forerunners but instead would be called "deities" and also if the ancient race were the enemies of the Covenant, they also would not be called forerunners but instead would be called "devils" or something like that. My point being that the Forerunners must have come before the Covenant and been friendly to the Covenant.

I speculate that the Forerunners were the religious forerunners to the Covenant and the current Covenant religious beliefs and political structure was developed as a result of Forerunner teachings. This would explain why the Covenant call the ancient race the Forerunners because they are their forerunners.

Incidently, the Covenant call Spartans "devils" so perhaps they or all of humanity represents the enemies of the Forerunners. However, humans couldn't just be the enemies of the Forerunners because there are so many indications that the humans might be the decendants of the Forerunners (for example the fact that 343 GS only selects humans to be potential reclaimers). Could this mean that humans were also of the same race as the Forerunners but they were the ones that went bad (corrupted Forerunners).

Perhaps here is where the Flood come in. The Flood outbreak purged the galaxy of the corrupt ancient ones and the Covenant races survived because they made a Covenant with the Forerunners (the good ancient ones in the eyes of the Covenant) and with God (and God being the creator to whom the Forerunners were messengers for). Unbeknownst to the Covenant, some humans (corrupt ancient ones) managed to survive as humans (or at least their DNA survived).

What would be the purpose of DNA surviving but not the knowledge of the ancient ones? Who is to say the knowledge was lost, all that needs to be done is the human race needs to discover fire and such and then tens of thousands of years later they can discover how to travel interstellar distances. At that point humans could find signs or the ancient race and assimulate that knowledge. Whoopie, the ancient ones are reborn.

Well the Covenant would want to stop the genetic decendants of the corrupt ancient ones from ever assimulating their ancient knowledge; that very well could be the motive for the Covenant attempt to wipe out humanity. At the same time, if their true Forerunners ever came back (assuming they are gone, since Halo seems abandomed of all Forerunners), the Covenant would likely greet them on friendly terms.

So how can the Covenant tell the good from the bad ancient ones. Perhaps humanity is the genetic decendants of the good ancient ones (the Forerunners) but because we have not reassimulated the knowledge of the ancient ones we don't know we are. And the Covenant look at humans (and human nature is not all that great, we certainly are not saints I'd add) then how could the Covenant not think that humans are the bad ancient ones.

Well, not to be out done by some of the mega Halo Story Page posters, I'm going to continue on with a bit about why the Forerunners might have been so popular to the Covenant. I'll start with the statement that the Covenant has had a long history with the Flood.

Now let's imagine the Flood several hundred thousand years ago, some ancient race may have stumbled upon the Flood. So pictures of the Alien movie come to mind where this ancient race is infected by a parasitic being and four movies later, this ancient race is never even mentioned even though in the second movie the humans set up a colony on the same darn planet that the ancient race crashed on. Oh nevermind. Forget all of that and think that the Flood that the ancient race stumbled upon were not parasites but an advanced race that had conquered much of this galaxy.

These Flood were intelligent and had enslaved many other races, such as the Grunts, Jackals, and other races found in Halo. The enslaved races treated the Flood as masters and deities -- worshipping them and providing offerings or else the Flood wrath be unleased upon them. The Flood were masters of organic and genetic technology and actively altered their slave races to be better at their functions. Grunt ancestors may have been altered to be better workers, Jackal ancestors were like police that could hunt down escaping Grunts, and Hunter ancestors were the task masters used to control all the slaves. Elite ancestors may have been best suited as warriors.

Some pockets of resistance were still holding out against the Flood, such as the Prophet ancestors. The Prophet ancestors could not win this war on their own but like a godsend, the Forerunners came. The Forerunners allied with the Prophet ancestors and so the war against the Flood began. It was a vicious war with Elites fighting Elites (some of the Elites joined the side of the Forerunners). All that joined the Forerunners formed a Covenant.

Forerunners built many weapons to defeat the Flood and Flood responded by creating more vicious versions of themselves. It finally came down to a point where both sides could annihilate each other with various weapons (Halo's final weapon for example, and the most vicious infection forms of the Flood on the other hand). No one was going to win this war. The Covenant (Forerunners and allies), realized this when the Flood unleashed the most vicious form of themselves, a form that could not die from starvation because it could hibernate in a form of stasis deep underground. No planet ever infected by them was ever going to be safe again. What is worse is that this new infectious form of the Flood was designed specifically to be most effective verse humans and Elites (the primary fighting force of the Covenant at the time).

Even Halo's final weapon would not stop the Flood if this new infection form got a foot hold in this galaxy. Halo's weapon would have to be fired before the outbreak went too far. There were those Forerunners that said Halo's weapon must be fired and those that said no, make peace with the Flood.

Of course this is just speculation above, but image if it was mostly true. Some wanted to make peace or maybe even join up with the Flood to avoid total annihilation, others had no choice in their minds but to kill all life in this galaxy to stop the Flood before it was too late. What if because of this internal struggle that not all Halos fired? Certain portions of this galaxy would have been wiped of life, others not.

Since not all the Halos fired, the war continued in areas still infected. The Flood made a horrible miscalculation though. In making such a vicious parasitic form, they consumed too much too quickly and soon they ran out of food. Those of the Covenant that survived just happened to be on planets the Flood never reached before their food ran out. Thinking they were safe, but not knowing why they were still alive, they were careful to stay put and not explore because any planet other then the ones already controlled by the surviving Covenant could be infected by the Flood.

So the long, slow, and careful search for other survivors began.

What ever happened to the original Forerunners, the ancient ones? They honestly believed that all the galaxy was going to get wiped out, so they fled the galaxy with their allies.

And why might the Covenant not know the location of the Alpha Halo and everything that happened? My guess is because the Covenant that survived were just politicians, civilians, workers, and military grunts... just everyday Covenant joes that were expendable. They had no clue about the Halos back in the day that all this happened. The ones that knew fled the galaxy.

And so to tie up at least one lose end. The human worlds may have been populated by the expendable ancient ones who were left behind. It's a strange thought, but they may have picked some planets to go to in an area that was far away from the Flood outbreak in hopes it was safe and then purposely destroyed their technology so that if they somehow got infected by the Flood, they would not risk giving those Flood the ability to travel to other stars and thus infect the other survivors on other planets.

Oh and before I forget, the Flood are back because some idiot space faring being got infected and started yet another outbreak somewhere. Now the Covenant must find the Alpha Halo for some way to stop the Flood.

Without commenting too much on this, let's see what readers of the HSP think. Can the Flood be such an advanced species as to have bio-engineered themselves to be the creatures we met? Or worse? Send in your thoughts!

permalink | The Flood


Edward Shinai Purugganan ( writes:

Now, there has been much speculation on the weather being used to protect Halo's systems either from the Flood itself, or maybe intruders, such as the Humans and the Covenant, and I believe they're correct. Yet I think there's more to just burying canyons in snow. Jonathan Pratt (July 5,2003) made some serious speculation about the blue streaks and the weather using snow to bury the control center in AotCR and other people in the past have also mentioned the tubes/pipes/ducts seen in AotCR. Now the snow may not be as effective as a deterrent against technologically advanced forces, but maybe for the Flood, but the pipes seem to decend farther than the ground, which might leave one to wonder: just how deep does this canyon go, and also, what exactly is filled up in the canyon? We know that parts of Halo have an extreme elevation like "Halo" and T&R, so we know its possible that these canyons are extremely deep. I speculate tha! t the tubes/pipes/ducts transport water and also possibly a substance that might generate a deep freeze on that water to create ice. Another consideration should be that the Flood were kept deep inside Halo, and the Forerunner made Halo to have their systems on higher levels and their experimental labs(which are most dangerous) on the extreme lower levels. Along with this, they created accessways to send constructs, such as Sentinels, down below to protect themselves from the Flood, effectively contain the Flood, and observe/experiment on them at the same time. Now back to the ducts with water, maybe their measure to contain the Flood, in case of an outbreak, was to fill the canyons with water and possible other areas, and freeze that water in order to hinder the Flood from expanding to higher levels. Since we know that the Flood would attempt to change the atmosphere (thanks to 343GS) the ice could probably isolate the lower levels for the Forerunner to figure out a solutio! n and take care of the problem, maybe send Sentinels through accessways which they didn't freeze. Ice seems to be more reasonable as a defensive measure and it seems likely that this is true, since 343GS said that Halo has been used before and while going to the control room in AotCR you find that the there is still a considerable amount of ice still present, possibly because they used the "ice isolation" measure before to contain the Flood. Halo is supposed to wipe out all life in a radius or something(I forgot) light years, but that doesn't mean that it would destroy life on Halo. Those portals on the outside edges of Halo, I believe, are the firing mechanisms which obliterate life, and maybe access-ports for ships or containment vechiles. To sum it all up: yes, the weather is a fail-safe measure, and that measure is to freeze out the Flood from higher levels, and to prevent life being assimilated by the Flood.

It's been long, but this is the short, expansion-part, conspiracy theory of the weather. It's not know whether Forerunner had a "civilian" population on Halo, or that they have one at all. However, if they did have a society that has different structures like our own, they might have wanted to keep experiments a secret. Thus, they hide them in lower levels and use weather as a fail-safe, instead of weapons. Sentinels could have been robotic assistants for anything, and be adapted to be used as containment robots, or anything else. So, the secret of the Flood is kept. For what reason? That's open to plenty of speculation by the masses... :) A note to everyone: just don't think the weather we have is some secret government control system to keep things in order and hide us from the truth.. or maybe we should... ;)

I don't know about that. That weather here has been pretty weird lately.

"Lesser" classes of Forerunner, eh? Interesting... ;-)

permalink | The Forerunner


Jesse Price ( writes:

Stop me if you've heard this one before, but could the Marathon universe, starting with Pathways, tie-in with Halo? Let's go through this.

The "unnamed god" crashes into our planet millions of years ago, and the Jjaro come to deal with it after the events of P.I.D. Then, the Marathon games take place and Durandal is left to escape the end of the universe. Let's say that the Jjaro are the Forerunner in the Halo series, and disappeared with the rest of the universe when the previous reclaimer activated the installation. In so many words, the idea here is that Durandal presumably sent the cyborg from Marathon to a Halo (not necessarily 04) in his attempt to escape the closure of the universe. This wipes out all life in the effective radius of all the installations. So, (and I realize this is rather far-fetched) *deep breath* evolutionrestartsonearthandleadstohumanityresearchingmanyifnotallof


If Mr. Security Officer was the reclaimer that GS refers to with the line, "Last time you asked me..." then I wonder why he (we) asked that question at all? For all the Marathon players out there, did you ever stop to ponder your actions on a galactic scale? ;-)

permalink | Marathon Connections


July 23, 2003

Shadow ( writes:

I thought it was very clever of Bungie to incorporate an "Alice in Wonderland" scenario in the beginning of Two Betrayals. GS's line "Save his head. Dispose of the rest" is very reminiscent of the Red Queen's promclamation, "Off with her head!" Halo itself is quite the Wonderland of its own...

While there's definitely another influence at work here, you can't really go wrong with an Alice in Wonderland reference.

permalink | Rampant Speculation


July 6, 2003


Over on the forum, Mark Simmons has posted what is, so far, the definitive analysis of 343 Guilty Spark's highly ambiguous dialogue. Enjoy a careful read or two, take note of the clear and concise format, and if you feel so led, qualify or add to the discussion. Go to it folk .

permalink | Monitors


There are three things that are two amazing for me, four that I do not understand...

Nick Regnier ( writes:

I've been wondering just what Guilty Spark's relation to Halo and the Forerunner are. After pondering on it for some time, a thought struck me:

What if Guilty Spark isn't the Forerunner-designated monitor of Halo? What if another race put him there to study, or fire the ring?

Whoa. Though not the most likely situation, that would certainly put a strange spin on things... Who would such a system of surveillance or control advantage?

permalink | Monitors


"We're just going to keep them around and do experiments for a while."

"But, what if someone stops by, or they get outside to frolic? How will we get them back downstairs?"

"No problem. We'll just wipe out all life within a radius of 25 000 light years. And once the others follow suit..."

"Seems at little bit... drastic, don't you think?"

Tursas ( writes:

During the library, 343 Guilty Spark comments that, "The Flood must not escape the installation. They would consume all."

At the end of 343 Guilty Spark (the level), he states, "Greetings. I am the Monitor of installation 04. I am 343 Guilty Spark. Someone has released the Flood. My function is to prevent it from leaving this installation. But I require your assistance. Come. This way."

Now I don't know what you think about this comment, but it seems to me that if we are assuming that Halo is installation 04, then the measures taken to prevent the flood from leaving it do not exist. The Monitor leads us all the way through the Library to do what other than destroy all Flood-sufficient life in the galaxy. Never did I hear mention of containing the Flood on Halo itself. Certainly, the Monitor may have been working in the shadows to prevent the Flood from leaving Halo, but he was with us so consistently throughout the levels that I have a hard time believing it, especially after Cortana's assertion that Halo's primary weapon was galaxy-sterilization.

This is where I see an error. Is 343 GS's function to prevent the Flood from leaving the installation, or to help us destroy all life in the galaxy? Could it possibly be both?

In light of recent remarks, specifically one regarding the idea that the Forerunner inhabit other galaxies as well (Thomas Cranor, April 30), perhaps it would be more suitable to expand the definition of 'installation' to include the whole Milky Way, as opposed to only Halo. In this way, 343 Guilty Spark's assertion that his function is to prevent the Flood from leaving the 'installation' stand.

However, at the beginning of Two Betrayals, 343 Guilty Spark states, "More or less. Technically, this installation's pulse has a maximum effective radius of twenty-five thousand light years. But, once the others follow suit, this galaxy will be quite devoid of life, or at least any life with sufficient biomass to sustain the flood. (pause) But you already knew that. I mean, how couldn't you?" The whole theory gets sticky here.

Can you see my point? How can 343 Guilty Spark prevent the flood from leaving the 'installation' while the only way to do that is to cleanse the entire galaxy?

The Sentinels, who at least mean well, appear to be the only real attempt to contain the Flood on the surface, though even they can only be used for a short time. And as was also brought up recently, besides 'containment', what other protocols are we not privy to?

permalink | Halo Installations


Why wouldn't it simply be easier to...

Mike Kakias ( writes:

This is less a theory than a quandary.. but if the Master Chief, and Cortana's plan to destroy the flood (destroy Halo) was seemingly a better plan than 343 GS's plan to destroy all life. Then why was Halo's Final weapon not just a self destruct sequence... or better yet why didn't the forerunners just put the flood on, then blow it up.

Well, because that would be easy, and with the ring gone, make studying the Flood rather difficult (better to let them at least attempt to escape first ;). Still, the point is well taken: a galaxy wide extermination as a result of what is for the time being at least, a local outbreak does seem a little excessive.

Questions, questions.

permalink | Halo Installations


When good rebuttals go bad!

What started out as a routine response turned ugly earlier today when blithe calculations inadvertently exposed a significant numerical variance in dates. Ghastly in its unexpectedness!

Kiara577 ( writes:

First, all you people speculating that Beowulf/Durandal/Hero is talking to/about Cortana I feel is wrong. In FoR it says that Cortana was created in the likeness of Dr. Halsey around the year 2552. That is when Master Chief is first introduced to the real MJOLNIR armor. The Marathon supposedly launched in 2209 and I assume (never having played the game) that Durandal was on it. That would mean that Durandal was talking about an AI from 343 years in the future. This would be impossible.

When have impossible premises ever hindered the submission of email? ;)

And a 343 year time difference to boot; spooky :)

permalink | Marathon Connections


Four scenarios of the Covenant war. Four scenarios of the Covenant war. Four scenarios of the Covenant war....

Spelling out the allusion, (Tyrant343) writes:

Noah's ark: the FLOOD destroyed the world, and God made a COVENANT with Noah, never to FLOOD the world again.

Perhaps the Covenant were created to guard the Halos and ensure that the Flood never again purges the world. Now perhaps Humanity was getting too close to these worlds, and the Covenant, acting in what's best for the universe, decided to cleanse us.

Makes you wonder who's the villain in Halo.

permalink | The Covenant


The Covenant invasion mimics the Crusades' great journey to a land central to faith...

Shane Meyer ( writes:

I have theory about the start of the huge inter-stellar war between Humanity and the Covenant. The ancient crusades began when the "Christian" kings of Europe, went to war to repel the Arabs from the Holy Land. Could it be then, that if Humanity expanded into Forerunner space and the Covenant, who view the Forerunner as gods, saw it as sacrilege and viewed it as their duty to protect the realm of their gods?

Locality and spatial infringement as the cause of war; to keep the heathens from possessing sacred lands and relics. Another interesting possibility.

permalink | The Covenant

-Finn (Spartan027) writes:

It seems reasonable that the reason the Covenant wishes the human's destruction is because the humans live on places visited or once inhabited by the Forerunner, but do not respect such places.

These strange, endlessly multiplying mammals...

permalink | The Covenant


Sticks and stones may break my bones but names will never hurt me. Though, other consequences of name calling may include far reaching genocide...

Tweedy ( writes:

In The Fall of Reach, Admiral Stanforth states "We had hoped that contact with a new race would be peaceful. Obviously this was not the case--the alien vessel did not open fire until our task force attempted to initiate communications." In The Flood, the prologue indicates the significance of names, and/or language to the Covenant, stating "Names implied legitimacy, and the vermin deserved only extermination." Is it possible that the Covenant only glassed Harvest, the Argo, and the rest of the UNSC task force because they attempted to identify themselves?

What's in a name? Just how much weight do the Covenant place on semantics and linguistic formality? I guess sarcasm and jest should be avoided in any future conversations :

permalink | The Covenant


"They came to search through the devastation of the ancient war in which they had been enslaved, to find a weapon or some piece of knowledge with which they could fight back against their oppressors."

Kevin ( writes:

Here's an interesting idea for y'all. Throughout the game on Halo, we see loads of different environments. What we don't see is anything that could be considered as 'living areas', where the Forerunner would sleep (if they need to sleep), and generally hang around when they're not experimenting with the Flood or whatever else they do. So, were they on the Halo at all?

It is true that only a very small portion of the ring was explored during our time there. What other clefts and nooks may have held secrets and curious gadgetry? What other answers could have been found, what new questions uncovered?

We may yet see. Word is that a piece of Installation 04 will be revisited in the sequel. But to what end...

permalink | Halo Installations


July 5, 2003

Those 'blue beams' as orbital stabilizers or thrusters, and the ring's weather as a fail-safe

Jonathan Pratt ( writes:

There's a lot of theories floating around regarding the blue plasma being fired seemlingly pointlessly up into the "sky" on the "Halo" level (number two). I propose another: gravitational stabilization.

A structure requiring a precise balance among other sources of gravity (Basis, Threshold, etc) in space would require constant correction if it were to stand for long periods of time, as the Halo rings must have if they have been activated before. Meteors and such striking Halo, although they wouldn't damage the structure, would damage it's balance. Even a modest rock in space could send Halo tumbling into Threshold after a few thousand years. That would certainly be a waste of resources.

Perhaps the blue material shooting up is some sort of venting system for Halo to stabilize it gravitationally when such corrections are necessary. Surely something as massive as the Pillar of Autumn (consider the hull and whatever mass powers its massive engines and reactors) would have an effect on Halo's balance as it plowed forcefully into its surface (as indicated by the scene at the beginning of the Maw, quite an impact). That in conjunction with other landing craft, human and Covenant, not to mention the Truth and Reconciliation, would create chaos if left uncompensated. The most fundamental laws of physics demand an equal and opposite reaction if Halo is to maintain in gravitational equilibrium.

Like the derigibles and zeppelins of old venting ballast water, maybe Halo has a gravitational system that vents superdense matter when necessary. This theory is supported by the rapid frequency of the blue "plasma" bursts in Halo if you consider the circumstances outlined in my previous paragraph (interference in the gravitational equilibrium from spacecraft and whatnot)...there would be a lot of venting activity (as there is in the game) if there was a sudden arrival of aliens to Halo's surface. Whether or not these are recycleable or rechargeable is something someone else can contemplate and discuss...surely Halo could recharge it's ballast over time by collecting space dust. But I digress from pure speculating.

It's been noted that the water level on Halo has dropped (erosion on Silent Cartographer) since some earlier time...perhaps the water on Halo's surface is a reservoir of mass which is later converted into superdense material for venting? However, I am skeptical of this as a rotating ring near a gravitational body (or two) would have tidal effects, so using water and leaving less on the surface to slosh around would itself upset the gravitational balance of Halo, requiring more stablization. Seems like a snowball effect. Maybe a better explanation for lower water levels is still out there...

Some have wondered about why so few of those blue plasma structures exist in such a concentration at only one point on Halo...but this is an assumption. I'm sure someone out there is capable of calculating the environmental (inner) surface area of the Halo ring based on some Greek mathematics, and that they could also calculate the surface area of the levels in the game. Compared to the surface area of Halo, the levels are minute and practically insignificant. Now, factor in that not all of these levels are on the surface of Halo and that even the some which are on the surface are in unsuitable locations (the Assault on the Control Room is unsuitable due to the fact that it's in a big canyon, for example), and you'll see we really didn't see all that much of Halo, especially the parts likely to have these vents firing into the "sky". So it stands to reason that more of these structure could be scattered about, as well as other things we have yet to discover. My belief is that they exist all over the ring, not just on the inside, but along the outside edges as well, acting as directional thrusters for stablization.

The second part of this rant is in regards to the snow around the control room, although it's a bit sketchier than my previous theory. It struck me as odd that it is constantly snowing near the control room and yet the snow seems to be at convenient heights and nothing important is "snowed-in", as it obviously should be after a blizzard spanning millenia. Perhaps this snow is a recent automatic attempt by the Halo environmental systems to bury in the control center in a snow-packed canyon, quarantining it from undesireable life forms (eg flood, humans, Covenant) and preventing them access to something important? It seems like if the Forerunners would take the time to build all of these massive installations, they'd also find every possible way of protecting them, even if it is such an oddly creative one as using the environment as a safeguard.

The weather as a fail-safe is an idea that just gets better with age. Nice work! :-)

permalink | Halo Installations


Fury Three ( writes:

Earlier today I was wandering around the swamp and hills of 343 Guilty Spark, intrigued by the Flood's early appearances near the complex entrance. After riding the Pelican onto the ridge, I found some interest in the strange glowing trees in the area. The color of the glowing spots reminded me (Rather hauntingly) of something, as it does everyone: Flood.

The plant life's resemblance to Flood gave me an idea--What if the Flood evolved on their own within Halo, in this swampland particularly? Most theories say the Flood were found/created/etc., then the Halos were built to contain them. What if the Forerunner created Halo as an experiment, to see what kind of life would develop in the ring's evironment, and kept a significant population on it to do the research? There's any number of reasons they undertook this experiment--To learn to develop anything from exotic plants to real estate to biological weapons. Anwyay, something did evolve, consuming the Forerunners--The Flood. After a number of infections, the Forerunner contain some Flood infections for study, exterminate the rest, and the Flood become top research priority. Again, there's any number of reasons they did this: For the sake of science as part of an effort to better understand life, to determine what went wrong in their giant ring-farm's evolutionary fast lane, or perhaps even to utilize the Flood as a weapon.

By now the Forerunner were well aware of how dangerous the Flood are, and built a weapon into Halo, so that if the Flood escaped they could be destroyed before getting anywhere. The key to this weapon was placed in tight security, to keep the Flood from getting to it. After some time the Forerunner complete or abandon the Flood project, put the Flood in permanent containment in case they need to do more with them later, and leave Halo, apparently forever. Before leaving, they set up a network of AI constructs--Sentinels, led by the Monitor, 343 Guilty Spark. Perhaps the Monitor's role lives up to it's namesake, and he was supposed to call home if the Flood escaped by some chance, while the Sentinels held them off as best they could. But as we all know, in the 100,000-plus years that follow, GS goes insane.

The Forerunner's long scientific presence may explain why there are no signs warning of the Flood in the compound on 343 GS (And presumably elsewhere, as Cortana brings up in AotCR), because anyone working there would be there to study the Flood, and the facility/ies the Flood were located in were probably sealed up to the point where you'd have to use a good deal of force to get in--why put a warning sign up for the contents on the other side of some 50 inches of tempered glass, locked airtight blast doors, and metal?

Why, indeed? Who would have expected a cyborg warrior to show up bristling with weapons and grenades? ;-)

The mention of the Monitor's possible "call home" intrigues me. What if he did call home? What if his masters sent someone or something out to him? We weren't there much longer after the Flood got out, could it be that the alarm has been raised? Are the Forerunner on their way? Time will tell...

permalink | Halo Installations


Dienekes Homework

Sam K ( writes:

I'm afraid I haven't read the FoR, so I'm not too familiar with the particulars of the MC's history. But I'll go ahead and give you guys the information to sort through and my own conclusions. Earlier I saw some connections made between MC and the Spartans, particularly Dienekes, so I did a little research. The state determined whether Spartan children were strong enough to be permitted to live in their society at birth. Dienekes was not one of them. Dienekes was abandoned as a child to die of exposure on the beaches of the sea. Poseidon spared his life and kept him alive and gave him an understanding of the sea. Dienekes was returned to Sparta at the age of seven to train in the Agogue and become a soldier (note: the same age [more or less] that the MC was when he was brought into the Spartan-II program). Training for him as any other Spartan was difficult and extremely effective. Dienekes became a Spartan soldier at the age of 20, 13 years later. He would participate in multiple battles and tried to build his skill with the element of water. Dienekes tried to bring glory to himself by going to the lands of Ragnarok and conquering the people there. (that last sentence I cannot vouche for definitely, because I have only read it in a website and not in the history books.) He finally died at Thermopylae where he was outflanked and horribly outnumbered by the Persians.

These are most of the facts, I'm afraid I can't say I've gotten them all. I couldn't find much about the Ragnarok thing. Anyway, The intense training begining in early age sounds a lot like the MC, and you guys might draw a few conclusions of your own about it all. I think it may just be coincidence, but Bungie seems to be big on connections. This could be one of them.

"Big on connections," sheesh. Talk about an understatement. ;-)

Nice job!

permalink | The Master Chief


July 4, 2003

Zoidberg ( writes:

Ok so here it is.

As we all know the covenant are adaptive. They can take someone else's technology and back engineer it to work with their existing equipment. As much as this process has helped them in the past, I believe it to be the covenants Achilles heel.

Going ship for ship, man for "man", bullet for bullet just isn't working. All we get from that are spectacular failures.

Now in the real world, war has always brought upon technological advancement. I'm willing to believe that to be true here as well. Some agency, somewhere has been hard at work creating a doomsday device (it shall be codenamed: Giant Rabbit) or something like that. Well whatever it is, it'll be the most technologically advanced piece of equipment that we humans have. This would be appealing to the covenant.

But we shall have built in a subtle yet deadly flaw, or Trojan horse of some kind.

As they'll be fighting all over the planet they wont have time for detailed analysis of the device. The flaw would be over looked. Because it is of importance to the covenant they'd probably move it to their 'mother' ship, the one co-ordinating the attack. Then when they bring it aboard their ship or try to use it, the flaw kicks in and BOOM go the covenant.

That would take out the immediate threat to earth. And with the preliminary reports and schematics for this new device having been sent back to their central command, they start production, then soon all ships could be equipped with the device, and all we have to do is wait for them to press that big red button 'FIRE'.

That's plausible isn't it? Because surely they'll inherit any flaws that exist in technology they steal? Simply because they won't know how to fix it.

And if that doesn't work...we could always build a giant badger.

But how do we know that the Covenant haven't already built a giant badger, huh? Didn't think of that, did you?

permalink | The Covenant

Failing to consider the significant and profound possibility of an assault by a giant armored Covenant mammal aside, Zoidberg has another thought.

Why do people assume that in the end we humans are gonna win? Because we are fighting the good fight, against an amoral enemy? But have we not learnt, that those who fight the good fight dont always win? So all you who think that we shall go to the edge of the abyss and back, remember, its just as likely we may fall in. However I like to think that if we do fall in, we'll take alot of them with us. We shall not go out with a whimper but with spectacular BANG with a light show to match.

Now, I've also been told that the Flood can throw grenades in the Maw, on Legendary, but I've never seen this so I'm not sure if it's true. But if it is... well, it only helps to prove my point.

Well, I like a big noisy light show as much as the next guy, and we've had other reports of Flood warriors throwing grenades, but we must win! Why? Because losing isn't as fun. And it's for losers.

permalink | The Flood


As if by magic, here's one of those Flood reports I was talking about! ;-)

craZy ( writes:

Does it seem to you that the Flood are, and I dare say, evolving throughout the course of Halo? Well, maybe not evolving, but getting more and more used to their new bodies?

Take the level 343 Guilty Spark for example. When the flood are first released (or, rather, when you first fight them) you face only the ranger forms. After a few waves, some combat forms burst in.

And even after you've been introduced to the combat forms, they don't use weapons. Not until you've taken an elevator down. It's like they're still getting used to their new hosts, learning how to manipulate various things, like a new born. You know, baby steps.

But it doesn't end there. After they get the basics of aiming a weapon and shooting it, they go on to tactics. Things like rushing enemy positions, and... well that's about all they do, but its still more then just standing in one spot.

They do get better at it, however. Like in Keyes, they seem to know the advantages of being higher then one's opponent. Those pesky buggers always occupy the ledges in the canyon section of the level.

Also, in the last two levels in general, them seem to be winning the fight against the Covenant. Even the strategy guides tell you that whenever you come across a Flood and Covenant battle, to aim for the Flood first.

"It's parasitic nature belies the Flood's intelligence," eh? Now, where have I heard that before? ;-)

permalink | The Flood


Another well-written, considered opinion on the nature of one our most relentless adversaries.

Tim Jones ( writes:

Assume that, at the time of the Floods' first appearance in the galaxy, the Forerunner were the most advanced and itelligent life around. They would have observed (with growing alarm) the nature of the Flood infection and quickly established that if left unchecked, all sentient life in the galaxy (possibly including themselves) would be assimilated and ultimately destroyed.

How would the Forerunner devise a plan to escape?

Simply using Halos power to destroy all sentient life makes no sense whatsoever - if everything will die anyway, why go to all that trouble just to speed up the process? I believe that the firing of the Halo was the final part of a much more elaborate plan to rid the galaxy of the Flood. Furthermore, this plan would ensure the survival of sentient life.

Suppose the Forerunner built the Halo as a "Safe Haven" for samples of sentient life from all over the galaxy. Perhaps the Forerunner themselves ventured into the galaxy to select samples and create a "library" of all life safely hidden away on the Halos. Shortly after this process is complete, the Flood reach epidemic proportions across the galaxy and the Forerunner "Final Solution" is prepared. This is when the Halos are fired thus wiping out sentient life and the Flood along with it.

The life forms kept on the Halos are safe - this is a known fact, the Floods continued existence can only be explained this way. Once the galaxy is cleansed (reclaimed?) from the Flood, the Forerunner can go about sending all the sentient life back to its original habitat. This now makes perfect sense, the Forerunner actually had a solution to the Flood epidemic which allowed sentient life to continue unhindered in the galaxy. This can also be backed up by the potential timeline issue concerning the previous firing of the Halos. If they were fired to destroy the Flood 100,000 years ago, then that would mean that the Earth would have been affected at a time when it was supporting sentient life, the only way humans could have survived beyond this point is if they were saved by the Forerunner along with everything else - it would seem that Forerunner and Human have met before! (This could also explain GS343's excitment at finding a record of all "our" lost time)

What I like most about this theory is that it coincides pefectly with the Noahs Ark story. Could this Old Testament story be the only surviving record of the Forerunner saving Humans from the "Flood"?

Moving on...

The Forerunner plan was a great success, everybody wins, sentient life is spared, the Flood are no more but...The Forerunner, being a benign species, couldn't bring themselves to destroy the Flood completely, so samples of the Flood were saved along with everything else, a huge mistake.

The Forerunner were not foolish enough to repatriate the Flood, but retaining even a single living spore in high security is obviously dangerous enough. As GS343 says in The Library level:

"Of course, samples were kept here after the last catastrophic outbreak...for study. It seems that that decision may have been an error."

- no shit.

Anyway, my final piece of supporting evidence is simply this - if the whole point of building and firing the Halos to kill all sentient life in the galaxy was a desperate attempt to destroy the Flood, ie. the very purpose of this catastrophic action was to get rid of the Flood in one final massive holocaust, they how in Gods name could it be the only species the Forerunner chose to preserve? Why are the Flood still alive?


PS Of course this means that the Covenant were also saved by the Forerunner- and that explains quite a lot too!

Ah, that most indecipherable of enigmaticly parasitic species, the Flood. What would we do without them?

permalink | The Flood


On the subject of the "blue beam towers".

LordCanofPain ( writes:

No one has said what might be the most obvious reason for them. To wipe out a large portion of the galaxy you would need tremedous amounts of energy. Now to get this large amount of energy you are going to need a very large reactor, one that has enough umf to get the job done and you cant just turn one like that on and off at will. When it would be needed it would have to be ready to fire on a minutes notice and that means running the reactor 24/7. Now the problem is you got alot of energy building up in the core and no where to put it. Solution, shoot the excess energy, the stuff thats not going to power the ring worlds enviromental facilities and labratories, into space. So its sort of a to much of a good thing idea.

But I thought you can't have too much of a good thing?

permalink | Halo Installations


July 2, 2003

Daniel "The Social Adept" Root ( writes:

Hullo there, just some thoughts on the nature of the Flood. Alright, here goes. Now, much speculation has been made already about the "Keyes Blob" as it is called, on the second to last level of Halo. My own thoughts: I don't think the Flood is quite as mindless as we may have thought previously, and the mysterious Keyes Blob is a key factor int his theory. First, some background info:

1. In game, I have never observed Flood infectees or Flood spores attack each other, as you would see in a truly mindless species. In fact, they work more in concert with each other than Marines or Covenant.

2.The Keyes Blob. Now, the incredible size of this organism, not to mention the fact that it contains both Keyes AND a Covenant Elite (as evidenced by the legs sticking out of it), indicates perhaps a relay mchanism contained within it, a sort of "Communications Tower", or at least the biological equivalent.

3.More importantly than anything else, quoting Cortana in the level's opening, "The Covenant are terrified that the Flood will repair this cruiser and use it to escape the ring." A mindless organism would NOT have the organizational skill, much less the know-how or brains to repair something as advanced as a Covenant battlecruiser.

Conclusion: The Flood is not mindless... In fact, I believe it to be more intelligent than anything ever encountered before by either Humans or Covenant. I believe the Flood to be sort of 'Hive Mind', not unlike the Borg from Star Trek. They assimilate, and adapt, to anything they come into contact with. I believe the TRUE purpose of the Keyes Blob is to act as a sort of focal point, a nexus if you will, for the Flood's telepathic signals, or whatever it is that keeps them so well organized. If so, then the purpose of Keyes and the Elite inside the blob is to gain access to as much knowledge as it can about both races and their collective technology, thus allowing it to escape Halo and infect more worlds. As seemingly random as it may act, I believe the Flood has a much more sinister purpose in mind...

Oh, there's no doubt that the Flood are smarter than we give them credit for, especially since most of their actions with regards to us seem to be focused on simply "overwhelming annihilation." And the 'Hive Mind' idea really makes me wonder what other environments we're going to see in Halo 2. ;-)

permalink | The Flood


Zack Stambo ( writes:

I've always been interested in your site since i first stumbled upon it but i've never wanted to get too complex with my thought on the halo storyline future, but now im turning over a new leaf with this idea being submitted to you. So, 343 Guilty Spark is an Artificial and/or Actual Intelligence based creation, but he does not seem to resemble any of the artistic signatures of forerunner or covenant creations: 1) he is just a plain metal and has no other present colors on him such as the usual purple and dark blue. 2) he does not seem to be powered by any unusual alien power source and seems to rely on an electrical field to both float and interact which is obvious on the Maw when he is accessing the computer information from remote ports.3) not as important of a point but his language seems to be based on english seeing as he does not communicate with the flood(who could though) or the covenant. And if he is an artificial intelligence based creation then he would have advanced scanning/formula based recognition techniques and he would recognize the master chief as not wielding any forerunner/ covenant symbols and he would recognize him as a seperate life form. My opinion from all of these facts are that 343 Guilty spark was brought to Halo from a past incident in which the humans were overrun and killed and 343 Guilty Spark was left to float around in Halo and absorb it's information, developing his behavioural blocks from accessing the Halo information, probably a failsafe created by the Forerunner.

Forced insanity as a fail-safe? Deucedly clever!

permalink | Monitors


Bruce Hollowell-Geddes ( writes:

In other speculations the question of why the flood are on installation 4 rather then anything else, especially as 004 is often suggested to be the '4th best' halo. I have come up with the following suggestions:

1) The flood outbreak started on a habited planet near 004, and so the forerunners promptly gathered up the flood and locked them up in the nearest halo. This would be for saftey purposes so as not to fly a vessel with the flood on 50 000 light years and risk another infection. After quarantining the flood on halo it may have been activated to 'mop up' any survivors, as it would not nessecerily infect the rings inhabitents. This would also kill life on all nearby planets explaining why here is no known life near halo. The collection of the flood could have been for research into methods of reversing the process.

2) The flood outbreak happened somewhere else, but 004 was the only halo with adequate research facilities to observe the flood and try to develop 'cures'.

3) Halo is a weapon, and presumably the Forerunners will have had some kind of military organisation to control its use. It could be a military research centre, much like area 51. The flood could be from a system unkown t the forerunners, and upon capturing specimins they were taken to the installation for research. This research could be either for stopping the flood or as a weapon if the forerunners had enimies (presumably they did or had as they developed weaponary eg on sentinals). The weapon on halo could have always been there, pehaps to protect the installation- it doesnt have to be fired 25000 light years (343GS says the pulses maximum range is 25000) or developed as the forerunners believed that it was the only way to stop the flood. The military installation theory might explain two things others have speculated on: The pulses on Halo (the level) bear an uncanny resemblance to Cov. pistols and could be large anti ship versions. Secondly a lot of structures on halo-the map room, control room phase pulse generators etc are hidden in the sides of mountains and underground, in the same way military bunkers are.

Interesting observation on the term "'maximum' range." After all, we're told the Halo is not a cudgel, so perhaps it's not too outrageous to imagine that it could be fired with a (possibly significant) degree of precision. Remember, we're only following 343 Guilty Spark's "containment protocols." There might be other protocols that we haven't been informed of. ;-)

Good stuff!

permalink | Halo Installations


Okay, strap on those Jjaro boxers, Mr. Security Officer. Time for more Marathon speculation.

Sean Haas ( writes:

Although it seems any conclusions I inevitably draw within the Halo/Marathon universe, someone has already written about it. Except this:

This is, yet another, take on the whole Kill Your Television (first terminal) debate. I believe the author is in fact a conglomerate of intellects, most specifically writing this poem from the point of view of Cortana. Let us dicuss:

I have been Roland, Beowulf, Achilles, Gilgamesh.I have been called a hundred names and will be called athousand more before the world goes dim and cold. I am hero. She has been nameless since our birth,a constant adversary caring for nothing but my ruin,a sword drenched in my blood forever, my greatest andonly love. She is the dark. O Lethe, enemy and lover, withoutwhom my very existence would be pathetic and vulgar!Our relationship is complex and perhaps eternal.We met once in the garden at the beginning of the world and, unaware of our twin destinies, we matched staresacross a dry fountain. And I recall her smiling at me beforeshe devoured the lawn and trees with a translucent blue flameand tore flagstones from the path and hurled them into thesky, screaming my sins. I powder a granite monument in asoundless flash, showering the grass with molten drops ofits gold inlay, sending smoking chips of stone skipping into the fog. She splinters an ancient oakwith a force that takes my breath and hurls me to the ground.She lea% [leaves?]

The first section: I have been Roland, Beowulf, Achilles, Gilgamesh.I have been called a hundred names and will be called athousand more before the world goes dim and cold. I am hero

If you assume that the Halo and Marathon timeline's are one in the same, Cortana logically lives on to 'fight another day' following the events of Halo/Halo 2. Based on another Bungie fan's speculation, we will see Cortana go rampant in Halo 2. Having said this, at the time of writing this passage, Cortana is rampant, and quite possibly, insane. Amongst the names she mentions, two are mentioned within 'The Fall of Reach': Gilgamesh and Beowulf. Beowulf was the ONI (Office of Naval Intelligence) A.I. who screened the initial presentation of Covenant information to the Spartans. Later, Cortana hacks into the ONI's database to retrieve blocked files on John 117, and briefly runs into some trouble with Beowulf. She also places several credit transactions to a brothel on Gilgamesh (presumably another planet) to frame a high-ranking officer. Now, in her 'rampant' state (at the time of the above passage's writing) she may possibly be confusing various names and places with the sheer amount of data she has absorbed. Perhaps she even retains some of the code for Beowulf's programming, it is stated within FoR that she saved the route she took to ONI for later use. Maybe sometime between Marathon and Halo she assumed command of Beowulf for her own means? She then calls herself 'hero' from the first-hand account of John 117's battles with the Flood and the Covenant. John thanks Cortana, and is often thankful for Cortana, during his battles, so vicariously, Cortana and John are one 'heroic' entity.

Second section: She has been nameless since our birth,a constant adversary caring for nothing but my ruin,a sword drenched in my blood forever, my greatest andonly love. She is the dark. O Lethe, enemy and lover, withoutwhom my very existence would be pathetic and vulgar!Our relationship is complex and perhaps eternal.

As written on the Marathon story page, Lethe is a river that flows through the underworld of Hades. Borrowed from a Google search: "Forgetfulness". In Greek mythology, the Lethe is one of the rivers that flow through the realm of Hades. Called the River of Oblivion, the shades of the dead had to drink from this river to forget about their past lives on earth.

Technically speaking, you would assume the UNSC developed and employed A.I.'s for the purpose of tracking/remember/calculating/referencing information that starship captains do not have access to, or simply don't know about. Would it not then be easy to conclude that Cortana's one and only true enemy is 'forgetfulness'? Is it not her job to remember EVERYTHING she witnesses? True, she selectively deletes files in FoR and her Alpha command is to protect (insofar as completely erasing her own existence, thereby forgetting) the coordinates of Earth. But overall, her task is to catalog and assist with the memory of information. The blood-drenched sword alludes to the fact that Cortana has done and seen many violent and bloody things in order to ensure that she procures and retains her vital information. The destruction of Halo was her idea and as such, is one of presumably many large-scale acts of violence for the sake of preserving information.

Third section: We met once in the garden at the beginning of the world and, unaware of our twin destinies, we matched staresacross a dry fountain. And I recall her smiling at me beforeshe devoured the lawn and trees with a translucent blue flameand tore flagstones from the path and hurled them into thesky, screaming my sins. I powder a granite monument in asoundless flash, showering the grass with molten drops ofits gold inlay, sending smoking chips of stone skipping into the fog.

The 'We' mentioned at the beginning is no longer referring to the 'she' from the previous section. Here you would have to imagine an audible pause (if this was spoken aloud) or perhaps a topic change motivated by subtext. Keep in mind the author is likely not writing this to an audience, and is merely spouting off thoughts in a poetic fashion, clarity is also not a rampant A.I.'s strongpoint. I believe now, the 'conglomerate of intellects' A.I. in charge is now writing from the standpoint of Durandal, who somewhere along way, has managed to absorb the whole of Cortana. How exactly they could've 'met' is unclear, but as stated before with the communication between Cortana and Beowulf, it is not required for A.I.s to be physically near one another to communicate. I still believe the garden is in fact Halo, the blue flame is the destruction of Halo, and one could interpret that perhaps Durandal was at one point a Covenant A.I.? The 'screaming my sins' line would allude that Cortana's desctruction of the PoA opened the eyes of some Covenant (or Covenant A.I. in this case) to the fact that this war is a sin against their deity (possibly the Forerunner?). Halo WAS built to contain the Flood, not unleash them, maybe the Forerunner were a peaceful, intelligent race, and avoided conflict at nearly all costs (the exception being Halo itself), thus, to worship such a peaceful race, would not war be against their (the Covenant) religion? The latter half of this section, I haven't found an explanation for. Perhaps this, and the remaining lines of the poem, are now referring to something else we've yet to see?

In conclusion, if it is accepted that Durandal wrote this passage, I would have to add that Cortana somehow had a hand in it, or in fact Cortana and Durandal now occupy the same memory-processors and are in fact one and the same A.I. entity.


Thanks for reading.

< Unauthorized access-alarm 2521- >
< Security Breached 2362-d<12.53.2117.42 >- >

Marathon Internal Engineering Documents
Section 1-c appendix H

Subject: Doors
By: Estasia Orestes, Dominick I. Plackar, and Ursa Simbalzi

There are five basic door designs to be used on the Marathon:
1. Outer Bulkhead Doors
2. Airlock Doors
3. Inner Bulkhead Doors
4. Tertiary or Inner Sealed Non-Vacuum Safe Doors
5. Quaternary or Inner Powered Automatic Opening Doors

Direct control of all doors except the Tertiary and Quaternary
doors will be given to Dur%%#####

< Spurious Interrupt- BreachDisabled >
< Further Access Denied >

permalink | Marathon Connections


Darl & Pam Rantz ( writes:

I read the first theory on the story page about the flood. It said that halo was a fortress world that separated the rich and poor. He theorized that the Flood had been created by the Forerunner to control the poor. I thought that the forerunner could be drastically different from humans. What if the "poor" were the Flood. The forerunner could be the upper-class and the flood could be the lower-class. Even the forunner could look like the flood and actually BE the flood. HALO: The Flood says that another 'reclaimer' attempted to get the index and MC found his body. He was a heck of a marine... The reason why 343GS chose MC and another marine to be the reclaimer could have been because on the upper-class forerunner/flood could obtain hosts. There are tons of possibilities from there. Maybe the flood/forerunner was symbiotic with a non sentient host the was farmed on the surface of halo like cows. The flood could've been studied because they had developed some disease or genetic defect. Forerunner using their own poor as test subjects for a cure(like lab rats). Not ethical to us, but like I said, they aren't us.Theres plenty to go on thinking about from here but i'm leaving that up to whoever reads this, if anybody.

We know that there were ambient life forms in earlier versions of Halo. Could one of these be the "non sentient hosts" mentioned here?

permalink | The Flood


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