December 21, 2005
Holy infection forms! We've received a nice note from none other than Christopher Rowley himself, mentioning that he's got a website up now. Not only that, but there's a ton of great stuff there, including info on background and inspiration for his books. A big HSP, "Hello!" to Mr. Rowley, and for the rest of you, go check it out!
permalink | The Flood
December 18, 2005
A little theory
Ben Ferrone (TheTruthandReconciliation@msn.com) writes:
Ever since I stayed up for three days in a row playing through, and then taping and re-watching every one of the cutscenes in Halo 2, I was most interested by the "Whisper in the Storm" (when Truth and Mercy anoint the Arbiter). Particularly the history of the Arbiters. Apparently, two of the most notable battles in which an Arbiter fought were the "Grunt Rebellion" and "The Taming of the Hunters." The first one is rather obvious, just look at how those poor little Grunties are treated! But the second, while not at first glance, is much more difficult to explain. At first, I didn't think much of it, but then after I read that Hunters are smaller organisms which make up the larger Hunter form, and than that form mates for life with another 'Hunter Mass', I thought to myself, "So the Covenant must have formed the very Hunter life-form by putting those 'smaller organisms' into that armor." But then, why the need to 'Tame' them with an Arbiter?? I propose that the Covenant didn't form the Hunters, and that they were already a race before they were encountered.
Now, I come to the point where I must ask myself, "Did the Hunters make their own armor?" I highly doubt it, because they seem to lack the necessary intelligence to form something like that. We also should probably assume that the armor helps to hold the Hunters in their bipedal form. So, someone had to put them together (I don't doubt, however, that the Covenant now most likely replicates new armor for them). I propose that the Forerunner 'created' the Hunter as a form of Flood control (My theory requires prolonged Flood/Forerunner war, with Halos coming much later and as a last resort). Think about it. Have you ever seen anything that even resembles a Flood "Hunter Form?" I think that the Hunters were created to be an "infection impervious" warrior. Because Hunters are comprised of smaller, worm-like, organisms, we can assume that they have no spine, or central nervous system. Thus, although the Hunters are very large, their individual pieces are to small to be host material. Thus, the Forerunner attempted to create an army of Flood-resistant warriors.
Here's some more evidence: Hunter shields have a design that is different from normal Covie architecture, and more closely resembles Forerunner design. (Plus, the Covenant prefers purple and red to blue and gray. Excepting "Rookie" class Elites.)
We know that the Covenant stole just about every piece of its technology from the Forerunner, and the Fuel-Rod Cannon was probably one of them. Where'd they get the FRC? Hunters. The Covenant then created a handheld weapon, and placed another on the Banshee.
Finally, more tie-in with the Forerunner: Hunters would have survived Halo's activation because they were made up of small pieces, and thus had (here it comes) "Lack of sufficient biomass and cognitive ability." (Forgive me)
Also, Hunters could have survived the millennia by the following means of re-production: The Hunter mate for life, but how do they 'mate'? I believe that, since Hunters are giant conglomerations of worms, each "worm" mates with another "worm" individually. The openings in the armor around the midriff and neck are used to form an embrace, forming one, single creature (Think Changelings from Star Trek: Deep Space Nine). Each "worm" mates with another from the opposite Hunter. When this 'meld' is complete, a certain amount of "worms" in both Hunters has been impregnated. Then, more are born when older ones die. Thus, a pair of Hunters could live indefinitely. This process would also cause the genes of each Hunter to become closer and closer to the genes of the other after each mating process, possibly explaining the deep connection between two Hunters.
So, when the Covenant ran into the Hunters, they met with a bunch of failed attempts at combating the Flood, but decided to 'Tame' them into becoming part of Covenant.
permalink | The Covenant
Again, not a Marathon expert, but definitely worth a look.
Coleman Gailloreto (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
I found this in the Marathon scrap book, which can be found online. If you can't load the appropriate pages of the scrapbook, like me, then go to Hamish Sinclair's Marathon Story Page, and Go to "Fact and Puzzling Things about.."; Marathon Scrapbook, and you'll see a reference to a monster dropped from Marathon 2:
Sketch of the Zombie Pfhor, probably the coolest monster ever conceived for the game. All the upper part of the armor is gone, including the mask. The Pfhor skin is all covered with eruptions, like a case of chickenpox gone awry. The legs are deformed, swollen; the same goes for the arms. While the left arm is still recognizable, the right one seems like the cross between a slug and a piece of mucus. The shoulder is so swollen, the head is slanted to the left - yet the fighter is able to hold the staff with this arm.
permalink | Marathon Connections
Maybe I've been revising for Ecology too much (hah!) but this theory made me go a bit geeky.
Dominic Parker (email@example.com) writes:
Although there are plenty of plants and trees on the Halos (but some of the tree graphics aren't so good...), there is no wildlife: why is all the grass in Halo nice and clean cut? are there robotic Forunner lawn mowers which come out of little holes and do all the gardening while nobody is looking? What's up with that?
permalink | Wild Kingdom
Here's a thought - what if we get Harrison Ford to play the Chief in the Halo movie (and influences from Asimov's Foundation series to boot?)
UrsusActos (firstname.lastname@example.org ) writes:
So far, the great ark has been the subject of much debate. Is it that structure that human archaeologists excavated on planet Corral, as mentioned in Conversations with the Universe? Or is it on earth, as bungie's earth-ark concept art for its preliminary idea of Halo 2 implies?
There's that unlockable multiplayer level on Halo 2 that can be unlocked after playing on Heroic, and it's name is Foundation. In the great Isaac Asimov's Foundation series of sci-fi novels, a scientist named Hari Seldon tries to save the Galactic Empire by setting up two sanctuaries or foundations at opposite ends of the galaxy. Likewise, there might be two arks-one on earth for us humans and one for the covenant on corral. And like the enigmatic Second Foundation, the existence of one of the arks might even be unknown, to such an extent that it would be thought that only one Ark/Foundation existed.
This is just my idea on how to explain the ark's location, assuming that the earth-ark concept hasn't been deleted. (Finn: Sure hasn't!: 1 and a 2 and a...)
P.S. How many arks are there in the bible-Noah's Ark and the Ark of the Covenant, right?
Well I'd go see it
permalink | Ark
December 13, 2005
How can we say all this with a straight face? Shut up is how.
Over on Bungie.net, Frankie has opened the can and spilled the beans (rather than just scarfing them down without sharing) on the backstory of Bungie's Dead or Alive (DOA4) crossover character: Nicole-458, Petty Officer 2nd Class. As Frankie says, "she's quite a lady. If you define "lady" as ferociously violent killing machine."
Nicole was born in the year 2531 in the city of New Legaspi on Mars. At six years of age she was abducted by agents of the Office of Naval Intelligence and conscripted into the Spartan II program. The Spartan II program was the UNSC's highly successful military project to augment and hone perfect soldiers.
SPARTAN-458's unit was preparing for a classified mission on Nassau Station when the ONI stealth ship Apocalypso tumbled into real-space - being carried along in the wake of a freak slipspace anomaly. The anomaly intersected Nassau Station; creating a semi-stable "bubble" in the space/time continuum on its way back to the 21st Century.
For the time being Nicole-458 is trapped in the 21st century; guarding Nassau Station's secrets with all but lethal force (she realizes killing someone in the past could have dire consequences), waiting for the "bubble" to collapse and hopefully returning her to the year 2552.
Neat, and we even got a sprinkle of ILB thrown in for good measure, which is reassuring in its own way. Not because we hope that the Bees tale will make canon, but considering it alongside Frankie's tirade about the deadendedness of the DOA4 story info (just for us I'm sure ;), it seems that the presence of the Apocalypso is a tell-tale sign of ad hoc side stories. Good to know for next time ;)
(Seriously, it is worth noting that though Nicole was recruited in 2537, possibly making her of the 3rd "class" of Spartan II's trained [at approximately 8 years or less per cycle] she is still referred to as a Spartan "II", not III or IV. It doesn't solve S-III, but it sheds a little light on it.)
Check it out!
permalink | SPARTAN
December 8, 2005
An update? Consider it the first fruits of the Christmas season's peaceful, welcome relief....
Now, to shoot people in effigy online! ;)
First up, a lengthy post by mrbananas, discussing the Prophets: their individual motives, their actual knowledge of the Great Journey, and what it means that "this time, none of you will be left behind".
A great thread on the whole. All I know for certain is that Mercy is a little too vindictive, Regret not a tad unremorseful, and Truth... well he's wearing a robe 'cuz his pants are on fire. Check it out.
permalink | Prophets
Avateur Starz (email@example.com) writes:
Referring to a post†by†replay†about the ONI's possible prior knowledge of Halo Installation 04 and maybe 05, I've noticed some things that help bring sense to the HALO universe.†replay stated that, "This was one mural of several that was supposed to briefly describe the history of the Covenant, but did not make the final cut (note that it mysteriously features one Installation outside the borders of the galaxy)." He goes into this briefly, mostly explaining how the installations could cover the galaxy, even from outside of it.
Going back to HALO, one thing I had noticed that bothered me was how at the very end of it, Master Chief was flying his Longsword outside of what one could assume to be the Milky Way Galaxy.
This leads me to wonder what ONI was doing looking outside of the galaxy to begin with, assuming they did know about Halo 04.
"Halo Story Page: ONI knows much more than they let on."
"Joseph Staten: Without a doubt."
So why isn't ONI at least communicating with the UNSC? It looks as though they're keeping all of this urgent information to themselves. I've noticed how people believe that Cortana might be rogue, possibly not really trying to save the Earth at all. Could it be that ONI, or someone in it,†doesn't want the Earth saved?†It's already been noted that the higher-ups in ONI don't like the Spartans, the only thing keeping the human race alive. This is leading me to believe that there's a conspiracy going on...
Is somebody in ONI committing acts of treason? Is there a leak within ONI giving information to the Covenant, or purposely not passing along information to UNSC forces so as to help assure the Earth's destruction? Assuming that ONI knows about the Ark on top of everything else, they might not care if the Earth gets destroyed or if the Halo installations become activated, especially if they're working with the Covenant (or more specifically, the Prophets). There's so much speculation that the Covenant went to†our solar system in search of a Forerunner artifact. What if in reality they stumbled upon us because of information leaked to them purposely by someone within ONI?†Something fishy is going on here...
With ONI? I'd expect nothing less! ;)
permalink | ONI
Miranda as Keyes/Halsey's Daughter! Scandal!
As you may or may not know, we at the HSP are never ones to shy away from posting "old" news. In that vein, we thought it best to point out (for posterity) a post by Dark One investigating the very real (and oh, so sensual) possibility that Dr. Halsey might have been mother to more than the SPARTAN program.
I suppose on those long, deep-space journeys that even cryo-sleep and Rook would get boring after a while...
permalink | Miranda
They're in your miiiind... and can do your taxes!
Grant Williams/Redwall (firstname.lastname@example.org) and automatic jack (email@example.com write:
"This installation was specifically built to study and contain the Flood. Their survival as a race was dependent upon it. I am grateful to see that some of them survived to reproduce."
Now, the way I understand that the Flood works is that they infect a host with spores, which take over the body and slowly convert some of the body's cells to Flood spores and eventually Rangers in the Carrier form. This sounds like how a virus works, by exchanging the cells' DNA for the virus DNA. If that's true, then as the Flood spreads, the "pure" Flood DNA that started out will change relative to the hosts they are taking, and so once the Flood spreads the DNA will no longer be pure. Now, if you assume that in the above quote the Monitor is talking about the Flood's survival (a point of debate in itself), then you could go along to say that the Forerunner want the Flood to stay genetically "pure", for some reason.
But why would they want this? My first thought was that maybe the Forerunner were intergalactic racists or something. After a bit of thought I've come up with a better idea. Some time ago I was reading about organic computers - that is, computers made of living tissue. These computers can process information faster, and also store a lot more information, than silicon-based computers. However, silicon is a lot more sturdy than most organic tissue, so it doesn't really make sense. However, suppose you used DNA to store information - it already stores genetic information, after all - you would genetic memory in the most literal sense. If you used DNA to store information, you would have to make sure the organisms would survive, for one, and not mutate or change DNA, for another. That means engineering some incredibly sturdy and long-living organisms that reproduce asexually (without a partner; i.e., by cloning themselves) - an almost perfect description of Flood spores. Now, obviously you'd want to enact measures to make sure these organisms don't spread and also make sure you'd be able to study them, stopping the small amount of mutations that would occur. Of course, there's the question of what information could be so important to warrant wiping out all life in the galaxy in order to preserve it? Well, perhaps Forerunner genetic information, secrets of the universe, or even the ultimate question to the ultimate answer of life, the universe, and everything. (heh)
...Given that the human brain can whip the best computers in the world up and down in some processing disciplines, a being that is 10 feet in diameter, and probably 60% - 80% brain matter would make a very formidable computing engine.
permalink | The Flood
Similarities Between the Ender Series and Halo
n/a n/a (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
I've noticed many similarities between Orson Scott Card's Ender Quartet (Comprised of Ender's Game, Speaker For The Dead, Xenocide, and Children of the Mind) and Halo.
1. The Ender Quartet deals with three different alien races -- the Buggers, the Penequinnos (a.k.a. "The Piggies"), and [of course] humans. Of the three, the Buggers are extinct for most of the series (a good 3000 years), until one hive queen is planted by the main character (Ender Wiggin) at the end of Speaker For The Dead (could this be what happens with the forerunner?). The Buggers are a hive-race, with a small handful of leaders whose mind control the rest of the group (think of the Borg from Star Trek: The Next Generation). In addition, the Buggers are enemies of humanity (due to a misunderstanding) for the first book, [almost] completely obliterated at the end of it.
2. There are many similarities between Ender's "Jane" and Cortana. Jane is a life-form created when an attempt to take over Ender's mind by the hive queens fails and the telepathic bridge evolved into a sentient life-form -- a lot like rampancy. Similarily, Cortana is a literal brainchild of Dr. Halsey, created from a cloned brain. In the last book, Children of the Mind, Jane gains a body, which was created when Ender entered Auia-space (think of godspace).
3. Both John-117 and Ender were taken at a young age (five for Ender, six for John) for military training, and both excelled and became team leaders. When they entered service, they shared similar paths -- John was with the initial meeting of the covenant and a key player in many pivotal battles, and Ender commanded a fleet of ships that was sent to eliminate the Buggers by destroying their homeworld (he almost succeeded -- there was only one survivor).
4. The two series have some sort of mode of preservation for interstellar flight -- Halo uses slipspace and Cryo-pods to cover extensive distances, whereas the Ender Quartet is purely relativistic travel, which allowed Ender to live to 3000 years.
I'm ashamed it's taken so long to get this info up here. Thanks :)
permalink | Rampant Speculation
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