"Halo is like an onion. Yeah, an onion, that's peeling away on one side, while the other side has these big blue towers- Wait. I mean, like an onion that's speeding through space, on fire. No. Hold on. Okay, there's this onion, see? And it's got infinite layers, right? Infinite, like lots. More than you can count. And it's in space, and it's really huge? Okay, and you cut it, it's been cut into an infinite number of rings, only all from the middle, so there's no, like end pieces or anything. But there's all these infinite slices cut from this onion with infinite rings, and all of the slices are Halos."
"Maybe there's not an infinite number of them, but it doesn't matter! There's a bunch of them, and they're all over the galaxy, and there's all these levels, like layers, on the rings, and yeah. That's what Halo is."
Okay all you speculating cogitators, analyzing contemplators, and crack-addled conspiracy theorists. You've played the game, you've read the books, you've got this crazy idea. This section is for you. This is our "miscellaneous" section. Anything odd that doesn't quite fit anywhere else goes in here. Speculate rampantly away...
Talk about your Blasts from the Past!
Cannibal Harry, in an old HBO forum post, writes:
...Realizing the situation's gotten much worse, the captain of the PoA decides discretion is the better part of valor and gets the hell out of dodge. The Covs, of course, pursue. The next day, the PoA starts talking back, maybe.
? SCS Pillar of Autumn (?)
o CCS Sacred Promise (DE H c-3)
via x-process 04087.2.32.742573
(process owner Cortana)
"... He says I came not to send Peace but a Sword ..."
I came not to send Peace but a Sword is definitely a Cortana reference. Note that the sender is Cortana. This transmission angers the Covs, up till now they've been doing all the talking.
The PoA continues to run."
Written over two years ago, Cannibal Harry did an incredible job of consolidating and analyzing what are known as the Halo Transmissions. The Transmissions appeared on the halo.bungie.com page back in 1999, right after Bungie had announced Halo at Macworld on July 21st, 1999. While the Transmissions were not the first we ever heard of this game (that honor goes to the Cortana Letters), they do provide an insight into the kind of details that Bungie concerns themselves with and CH's analysis brings up some interesting questions. Go check it out!
Our own Louis Wu sent in something to the Story page here a little while ago, and I've decided to put it up as a kind of homework assignment for you all. (Stop that groaning in the back row!) Check out this link, then get Starhammer, by Christopher Rowley.
Louis Wu (email@example.com) writes:
A couple of weeks ago, Jason Jones mentioned 'Starhammer' as an influence. I just finished it...
Your assignment is twofold:
1. Determine the influences, if any, that Bungie has taken from this book.
2. Describe ways that Bungie has elaborated on, or differed from, the storyline in the book, in terms of the game.
Remember, literary influences on video games can be a tricky thing. I want five pages, double-spaced, on my desk by next Wednesday.
Tursas gives us his thoughts on scripture influences in Halo.
Tursas (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
...However, 1:17 is only one of two possible scripture references (excluding the 117 verse). The other is 11:7. The lone 7 would be of greater significance to those familiar to Bungie. Again, only two books written by John have a verse 11:7. St. John 11:7 is nothing special. Revelation 11:7 is something much more substantial. In fact, verses 5 through 9 (and possibly 10, if you discount the last partial sentence) can be interpreted as referring to the flood.
5. And if any man will hurt them,
fire proceedeth out of their mouth,
and devoureth their enemies: and if
any man will hurt them, he must in
this manner be killed.
6. These have power to shut heaven,
that it rain not in the days of their
prophecy: and have power over
the waters to turn them to blood, and
to smite the earth with plagues,
as often as they will.
7. And when they shall have finished
their testimony, the beast that
ascendeth out of the bottomless pit
shall make war against them, and
shall overcome them, and kill them.
8. And their dead bodies shall lie in
the street of the great city, which
spiritually is called Sodom and
Egypt, where also our Lord was crucified.
9. And they of the people and
kindreds and tongues and nations shall
see their bodies three days and
an half, and shall not suffer their
dead bodies to be put in graves.
10. And they that dwell upon the
earth shall rejoice over them, and
make merry, and shall send gifts one
to another; because these two
prophets tormented them that dwelt
on the earth.
(The rest is all about how at the end of the 3.5 days the two prophets are brought back to life and go to heaven and stuff.)
Why the flood? Verse 5 clearly indicates that anybody who gets too close to one of the flood's walking bombs will pay the price not only with death, but with assimilation of the body. Verse 6 clearly delineates how the flood are able to change the atmosphere. Verses 7 and 8 speaks of some great individual or group who come(s) to lay waste to the flood in a very short amount of time and leave(s) their rotting corpses to waste away on the ground. Verses 9 and 10 speak of containment protocol (don't touch it Jimmy, you don't know where it's been) and the celebration that takes place after the flood is destroyed.
The name John-117 would indicate that the Master Chief himself commits the floodicide, just because of the positioning of the verse in the text.
Simple enough. Certainly, this is a great way to foreshadow the end result.
Revelations sure doesn't mince words, eh? :-)
In regards to the Covenant "Plasma" technology, David Marsh sends this in.
David Marsh (email@example.com) writes:
It's very hard to store plasma by itself, because of the tremendous power levels it takes to create a magnetic bottle so that it doesn't come into contact with any of the gun, thereby vaporizing it. Therefore, it wouldn't be practical for the guns to work by storing plasma and releasing it when needed.
I was pondering this, and when I saw the front of a plasma gun yesterday, it all came together. There are two colored metal plates on the two prongs of both guns, blue for the rifle and green for the pistol. They reminded me very much of electrodes, and I thought that it would be much more efficient to have a battery in the gun rather than plasma. For any uninformed readers, plasma is ionized gas; that is, gas that has had many electrons knocked out of the atoms within it, at least one electron per atom. Heat is a measure of kinetic energy, or of the movement of particles, mass of particles and number of particles combined. When you rip electrons from an atom, you create at least twice the number of particles, so the temperature increases dramatically, which is why plasma is so deadly. One of the easiest ways to make plasma is to run a large current of electricity through a gas, and use the surrounding gas as ammunition. Maybe the guns run a large amount of electricity through the air and turn it to plasma, then shoot it forward via a magnet behind the electrodes. If the plasma guns that the covenant use do in fact run electricity between the electrodes, it would explain much of the gun's behaviors, such as overheating. If the gun stored plasma and released it, it would not heat up the gun, but maybe actually cool it down. However, a current of electricity between two electrodes makes the electrodes very hot. Therefore, it seems that the plasma guns actually run off of electricity, not plasma.
Much discussion of this type took place back in the early Marathon days, remember? Like from an old dream? ;-)
On the connection between Humans and the other races on Halo.
Jonas (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
I don't know exactly what the link is, but there must be one, becuase we all breath oxygen, like our gravity at 9.8 m/s2, and our doors are all basically the same size (so we have a scale of how big the forerunner were).
We know that all of the races breath oxygen becuase they can survive on halo (except the grunts, who wear face masks). We also know the covenant as a whole like oxygen, becuase thier ship is filled with it. And the forerunner like it becuase the built halo, and why build a habitat with a poisonous atmosphere.
The gravity is also the same in the covenant ship, (they didn't attempt to adjust it for the rings spin). And the forerunner like their gravity at 9.8 too, becuase that is what the ring creates.
Kingpin (Dustin M.) (email@example.com) writes:
I was thinking, what if the forerunner's didn't build Halo???
Think about this for a second. The Forerunners left senitals and Guilty Spark 343 on Halo to contain the Flood with enough knowledge how to defeat the Flood and activate Halo. What confuses me is how the Forerunners could construct several Halos of mass destruction capable of destroying everything in our known galaxy, but they couldn't construct a senital strong enough to defeat the flood, or enhance Guilty Spark 343 enough to set off Halo himself.
My theory is would be that the Forerunners actually discovered the Halos rather then building them. My speculation would be that the Forerunners aren't trying to learn about the flood, but are trying to figure out how to destroy the Halos and the Flood without killing everyone else.
Good points, although this would mean that there's another engimatic race out there somewhere. I suppose you can't have too many of those, right? ;-)
We get a lot, and I mean a lot, of submissions here that attempt to explain the relationships between the Humans, the Forerunner, the Covenant, and the Flood. If you've sent something in, keep an eye out for Halo Prehistory Day, coming Soon to the Halo Story Page!
Today, however, we have an interesting submission from SlimJD747 that deals, not with the who or the how or the what of Halo, but the when.
SlimJD747@aol.com (SlimJD747@aol.com) writes:
Perhaps the Pillar of Autumn jumped farther into space then they bargained for. I beleive it is a possibility they jumped into time itself.
Once Reach fell, i belive the covenant traced the inner colonies over hundreds maybe thousands of years eventually leading back to Earth. I beleive that it was here on Earth in which the Forunner spawned. With Covenant dominaiton and destruction of the planet in a mere matter of hours, one can specualte the amount of escape ships trying to evade the Covenant, i believe many of them met such luck.
Prior to the covenant attack on Earth, a new protocol called Project Halo was created. Its purpose was to create the ultimate super soldier, and turn the tides of the war.
Construction was to begin, but then the Covenant attacked.
Each fleeing ship carried the technical information and highly advanced technology(compared to mastercheifs time) needed in order to build such facilities.
Dispersed throughout the galaxy, the survivors began constructing these halo's. And on it began the creation of a last, desperate hope. As far as anyone had known the proud Spartan soldiers had all been wiped out to events prior to and of the Fall of Reach. Now a less technical, precise super soldier was being created. One with numbers as its greatest weapon, and persitance is greatest allie.
However the experiment would be cut terribly short when the soldiers overhelmed there creators. The soldiers were like a disease, a flood, and they consumed all they could.
With highly advanced technology and wepaons the flood were managed to be surpressed, however not before the halo's super smart A.I was reassinged with ensuring the captivity of the flood, and executing whatever means necessary to ensure that captivity. Halo's defense systems were re routed and created into a highly dangerous though very effective last result, a self destruct sytem unique from anyother.
Those who were not killed, fled for their lives, and possibly the lives of other survivors, to tell of the horrors of the halo. Covenant forces who have long set out to search and destroy these myth halo super weapons find one, and investigate with victory thirsty mouths, and morbid curiosity. But what they find , is more than they bargained for. In a way project Halo works as desired, only with a hefty price no one could have estimated.
Then you arrive, on a blazing saddle (literally) you'r war stricken ship is bound for going down. And you land on what you think to be an alien world. However this ring planet is probably the closet thing to human you will encounter.
The POA arrives way in the future, unaware of the countless events that took place prior to their arrival.
You land on Halo and encounter many things. One of these things being the Halo smart A.I installation...GS 343. Here begins the first proof of human forunner. The A.I speaks english, a specific human language. Not only that but it speaks it with a rather British type voice. Such a voice one could imagine not to be a translater default tone.
This A.I also makes other intresting remarks, "stop acting so human"(spoken when shot at several times). The A.I is aware in the behavior of humans, and with no prior conact with the humans, how could they? Unless of coarse they were human.
Also the A.I recognizes your battle armor as level 2. What then is level one, perhaps the armor used by the marines in Marathon, the same armor the spartans trianers use, the one Dr. Halsey shrugs off as "antiques". Notice how both are human made. And in the time you missed while jumping through space and time, its very likley up to 12 or more type armor has been created, as recommened by the flaoting, sputtering genious himself.
It has been assumed that the comments made by 343 GS indicate the rise, fall, and rise of at least one of the civilizations represented on Halo. To turn that scenario inside-out, as it were, and keep the timeline coherent, that's some seriously creative thinking! Keep it up, readers! :-)
Longtime Halo fan and member of the feared and respected Team 7hr33, Finn checks in with some shrewd observations regarding 343, the Flood, and Jaime's "forces behind the scenes".
Daniel Barbour (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
This is in response to the comments made by both VORLONS301@aol.com and Astro the Space Duck regarding the "other species" which is so "persistent in accessing restricted areas" mentioned by 343. I agree with Astro's initial reasoning that this is not a reference to the Covenant; they are not a race, but an alliance of races. It is not the humans, for even though they are quite "persistent in accessing restricted areas" they were not responsible for the release of the Flood. That established, Jaime Griesemer's comment made in OXM UK speaks right directly to this debate:
"Well... I'll just say that Master Chief didn't meet all of the factions that had a hand in the events of Halo. There were forces at work behind the scenes that were alluded to, and you could probably deduce some of their motivations if you paid close attention. But they never confronted the chief directly."
It makes sense that 343 and Jaime are both referring to the same race. The other race then is not yourself, humanity, or any of the Covenant met so far. That narrows down the identity of the other race to the Jjarro, Forerunner, Covenant religious leaders, or something as of yet unmentioned...
kapowaz (email@example.com) writes:
...I was struck, upon watching the E3 2000 trailer, by the similarities in style between the UNSC Marines and the Colonial Marines from the film Aliens. Their uniform (battered, paint-scratched metal plating, helmets with an viewfinder over one eye), their weapons, and even their conversation (The commanding officer speaking to his squad onboard the Pelican on the trailer insists he wants a "Nice tight dispersal", echoing Sgt. Apone's words "I want a nice tight dispersal this time" on board the dropship in Aliens).
It wouldn't appear to be a coincidence that we have a Sgt. Johnson who looks like, sounds like, and even has the same rank as Sgt. Apone. His motivational speeches onboard the Pillar of Autumn again echo those of Apone onboard the Sulaco prior to the Colonial Marines' departure in Aliens.
Then we have the female lieutenant flying the lifepod upon your escape from the PoA, who bears more than a slight resemblence to Corporal Ferro, the dropship pilot in Aliens... and Foehammer's pilot also mentions some similar military jargon to Ferro (Ferro: "We're in the pipe, five by five", Foehammer: "I read you, five by five." - an interesting discussion of what this expression means can be read here: http://www.everything2.com/index.pl?node_id=1132372).
Finally, the most obvious similarity for me was the last-dash escape from a fusion reactor going critical, with your ship speeding off just in time to avoid the nuclear fireball that ensued.
I'm sure there are other links between the two that more observant individuals will send in. Bungie must really dig Aliens, but who could blame them?
Yes, we've known that various Bungie personnel were fans of the Alien films and it's good to get all this noted in a nice, well-written bundle. But what other influences can be found in Halo, hmmm? ;-)
If it doesn't say Aztec on the rocks, it isn't Aztec in the rocks...
Ian C. Jefferys (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
Throughout FOR, it refers to many objects as being "Aztec-looking." From the symbols on the rock retrieved by the MC on Sigma Octanus to the architecture of some ruins found on the same planet to navigation symbols seen on Covenant ships, the description of being Aztec-looking in either design or language is used often. At the end of FOR, Cortana discovers that the symbols and patterns on the rock from Sigma Octanus, when looked at a certain way, resemble star charts. She plotted a course for the autumn that eventually led them to Halo using this cart. She did however, "account for thousands of years of stellar drift" to get a match. Simple math: 2552 (date Halo:CE takes place) - 1000 (a few thousand years taken to mean 1000-3000 years) = 1552 In 1552 (or just in the 1500s) the Aztec civilization was at its height, and then was destroyed by the Spanish explorer/conqueror Cortez. It is now my belief that the Aztecs were somehow involved with the Forerunner, either as a seeded race or something else. Unlike most rash theories, to my knowledge, there is no contradicting evidence to this theory. Also, if we accept that the forerunner were around 1000 years before game time (500 years before now) then it is easy to imagine them being around at the time of Halo CE as well as Halo 2. I cant remember where, but I do remember Bungie hinting somewhere that the Forerunner will be revealed, or at least their presence known in Halo 2. just some food for thought... red meat in my opinion...
Very nicely put. Of course, Bungie has always been interested in Central American culture, but it'll be especially interesting to see how this pans out in Halo 2.
It's not everyday that we would consider the wholesale borrowing of a post from our fellow analytical site, but on this day of rest, it keeps things oh so simple... (Thanks be to the MSP.)
Relax, I told them we'd give it back ;)
Colin Ferguson (email@example.com) writes:
I noticed that the song from the Halo Sound track "On a Pale Horse" is also the name of a Piers Anthony novel. In that novel there is a line "Death is dead, long live death." This is similar to Bungie's official response to Phoenix questions: "Phoenix is dead, long live Phoenix." I also noted that in the novel, in a Latin American civil war zone, there is a soldier claiming that he is hunting "Seventh Communists." Sounds a bit like "Seventh Columnists," does it not? I asked Marty O'Donnell about this and have made a copy of my question and his reply:
3/18/2003 11:51 PM PST, by Fearless Son
Q Maestro in Chief, sir,
Fact: There is a track on the Halo Sound track called "On a Pale Horse," sir.
Fact: The official response to direct questions about Phoenix is "Phoenix is dead, long live Phoenix," sir.
Are these references to the first book in Piers Anthony's Incarnations of Immortality series, sir? More importantly, does that series have any plot or inspirational references that would send people (like me) on the Marathon's/Halo's Story pages into a rabid reading frenzy as we feverishly and painstakingly search the collected works of Piers Anthony looking for the slightest connection with Bungie games, sir?
A Marty the Elder says: Piers Anthony...hmmm it appears that what was once hidden has been exposed, what was lost is now found...
Could Bungie be drawing some serious inspiration from Piers Anthony? We better find out...
Indeed. Balance and rebuttal by DonPistola can be viewed here.
Semantic interpretation of Halo's premiere foray into verse.
Everett Green (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
Starting a new stanza, the author speaks of the space as a celestial bough. www.dictionary.com refers to a bough as a tree branch or arm, especially a large one. But if you look a little harder, an archaic (old, and generally no longer used) definition calls a bough another name for a gallows, or a form of execution.
Some of Oni's inspirations can be traced to The Ghost in the Shell; elements of Halo from...
Hayato (email@example.com) writes:
It could just be me, but. Anyone else sorta notice the whole similarity between Spriggans and Spartans? (Spriggan is a pretty sweet action sci fi anime with awesome animation... sort of a mix between Indiana Jones and James Bond.) The Spriggan and Spartan were both were kids trained basically from birth, and like totally augmented. They also both have their own suits, MC having his mjolnir mark 5/6, and Ominae Yu having his Orihalcyon Power AM Suit. Both are pretty much Governmental/Military Tools. :) I love this kinda stuff.
Only major differences are, that in Halo you are fighting over a highly advanced ringworld, in Spriggan, they are fighting over lots biblical artifacts... like the Arc and Holy Grail. :D
:: begins to wonder how powerfull a Spriggan in Spartan armor would be...:: Mmmmm....
A keen review never hurt anyone:
Elessedil 111 (Elessedil111@aol.com) writes:
All of the transmissions sent by the Pillar of Autumn to the Covenant battle group in the "Transmissions" section are from the poem "The Marriage of Heaven and Hell." Cortana uses multiple passages from the same poem in the "Cortana Letters." Bungie obviously has either some affinity with either this poem or William Blake, and either would make since. Some of Blake's poetry, like "The Tiger" and "The Marriage of Heaven and Hell" have to do with destruction and powerful entities in general. Someone more observant than me may want to look into this.
Some have, and others soon will...
The second begins with the verse as well, but goes on to point out yet another seven manifestation.
Matt McQuain (MMcquain@aol.com) writes:
I looked at a bit more of your time line and noticed that in 2535 that Jericho VII fell... yah... in the bible... the seemingly unstoppable fortress of Jericho fell too when the weaker army walked around it for 7 days (I think). On the 7th day they blew their horns and the walls fell from the inside out.††
Ohh...more 7s stuff...interesting...
John 117 has pointed us to several oddly applicable passages of Scripture. Samuel 034 has seen similar attention in recent days, though the relation, if any, seems to be slightly less poignant.
Matt (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
I know this may have been said already, but Samuel 034 was lost in battle in the book Fall of the reach. Yet again Samuel chapter 3 verse 4 "Then the LORD called Samuel. Samuel answered, Here I am"
Please Hammer don't hurt 'em!
Krillin Matthews (email@example.com) writes:
In Steven King's first widely popular novel, he had written in a very crucial character known as foe hammer. In this book, based in a time of kings and knights, a rather mediocre king known as the Good King Rowland was off hunting one day when he encountered a dragon. While everyone else in his party were taken off guard by the dragon and panicked, he stayed calm, drew his bow... and shot his prized arrow, foe hammer, at this dragon. He killed it with that one shot to the heart and proceeded to eat its heart, as was custom... or something like that.
Later on in the book, this same prized arrow was used by his son to kill the very embodiment of evil known as the magician Flagg. I don't know if any of this has anything to do with Halo's Foe-hammer, but it's just something for you to think about.
Dave Wolff (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
In the level 343 Guilty Spark at the scene where the Lt. Jenkins tape is replaying, there is a date at the end of the recording posted at the bottom. In the transcripts you have it posted as î>End Record View (#'s)ë †Well the î(#ìs)ë start with a date ˜ 2552 05 17 ˜ and end with the time of day of the recording. May 17, 2552? According to the time line of TFoR that would be months before Reach fell.
The plots thickens as we look to The Flood for further confirmation. Two early references to McKay's mission clock appear to be the victims of an extra 1 at the beginning (128 (p.127) and 144 hours from departing the Autumn (p.148), rather than a more consistent 28 and 44). Doing a little chrono-dancing, it appears that the events of Halo all take place roughly between the wee morning hours of September the 19th and the Pillar of Autumn's atomic sunrise on the 22nd, 2552.
Ahhh, inconsistencies; definitely not the first instance, and undoubtedly not the last.
New! Vitamin Enriched Typos and Dates!
We've received several letters curious about an apparent discrepancy on Lt. Jenkins' video recorder on 343 Guilty Spark:
Shawn St.Clair (email@example.com) writes:
If you haven't already noticed, the numbers following "Open Record View" are a time and date stamp. It starts with the sequence 2552.5.27 5.52.26 L and ends with 2552.5.27 6.39.23 L. I am guessing all of the events on Halo are taking place on Memorial Day weekend in the year 2552. The L at the end of the numbers means (most likely) Local Time.
A fine and appropriate suggestion. However...
The straw that broke the e-camel's back...
The exploration of the possible roots of the name Foe Hammer is nothing new to Bungie fans of old. And while this speculation entered the Halo universe a considerable time ago via a certain Thomas Dow, Jr., its mention was obviously not prominent enough , as we still receive notes to this day kindly pointing it out.
And so, in an effort to finally curb this well meaning, but unfortunately superfluous, stream of mail on the subject, I present, without further ado and with all appropriate apologies to those not credited, the definitive and hopefully final post on this particular relationship, barring any major future revelations.
Stuart Chan (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
Glamdring, the elvish name of the sword worn by Gandalf the Grey in The Lord of the Rings, actually means Foe Hammer in English.
Super Tanoshii Bonus Email!
Simpsons Rule (Simpsonsrule17@aol.com) writes:
I was searching Encarta for words like Covenant and Flood and Halo. I stumbled upon some interesting religious attachments with the Covenant that I haven't seen mentioned anywhere. For now read this piece of Halobacteria. It mentions the rotten egg smell, and if I remember correctly at the end of the level 343 Guilty Spark, you encounter the only time where you can see the marines fight the flood. One marine will say something like "man these things smell when they pop." This could be referring to the rotten egg smell of the Halobacteria. Also it mentions the Halobacteria release sulfur and not oxygen. This sounds like "the flood changing their environment." The resemblances are there...
Halophilic indeed. A quick search on Google will reveal more detailed information on this rather curious coincidence.
Scott Porter (email@example.com) writes:
I was just sitting in class today reading your page, mind you it was a spare. When I stumbled accross:
John1:18: I am he that liveth, and was dead; and behold, I am alive for evermore, Amen; and have the keys of hell and of death.
Now I have been aware of the Bible connections for a long time but does not the sentence "keys of hell and of death." perhaps mean the Captains neural implants that Cortana needs to set off the PoA engines, as in "Keys of Death". That being said, "Keys of Hell" would mean the index.
Josh (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
If anyone is familiar with the music of Warren Zevon, he has a song called "Roland the Headless Thompson Gunner" about the little known Congo War of the 60's. In this song Mombasa is mentioned. I have learned that Mombasa may be the setting of a level in Halo 2. Roland, of course, is mentioned in the Marathon series as the wielder of Durandal (from the medieval "Song of Roland"). Coincidence? Probably, but I thought it was interesting anyway.
There are no coincidences. Only connections perceived, and connections yet to be perceived.
It seems to be "Many Theories in a Long Email" week here, so this time I'm going to post the whole thing with no breaks. Enjoy!
Scott Porter (email@example.com) writes:
1. Door thickness/Material:
Has anybody noticed the fact that on the the control room the doors are paper thin, and yet on the Library the doors are at least 10 times as thick with extra armor! Also notice the little floating holograms infront of them on the Library, are those wards of some sort like in anceint cultures, or a 343 interface? Anyways did the Forerunner never anticipate the Flood coming to the Control room because they thought they could keep them contained or wipe the galaxy? Or are the doors on AotCR a better stronger alloy or metal, mind you the doors still break in the bridge chamber in Two Betrayls but don't open, but the doors on the Library never get broken. Wouldn't it make sense to make them all the same, or at least fortify the Control room more.
One last note on doors, remember how MC's suit changes temperature to keep him warm or cool, this means he never feels the ambeint temperature. If you look at the doors in the cliff walls on AotCR they all have the snow melted away for quite some distance. This would imply that either the Forerunners either like it hot, the material they build with is super heat conductive (perhaps for the dissapation of plasma shots, or absorbtion of heat when the flood alter the atmosphere), or the Flood have already started to raise the temperature and this is where the snow melts most readily.
2. Ohh, it glitters!!!!
I Love AotCR, so the other day I was playing through it and I couldn't take it any longer, WHY DO THE WALLS GLITTER(Bridge room, outside above doors see above)??? Now that got me thinking what if the same crystal that is in starships and the Mjlinor is in the walls of Halo, doesn't make much sense I know but the possiblity is out there. Then I though, well what if there part of 343's teleportation grid, after all he is the same color, but Cortana manages to teleport you to the TR on Keyes. So what if they're some sort of camera, or monitoring device? Hell they might even be part of some sort of one-way glass so the forerunners can watch(dependant mainly on the theroy that Halo is a testing grounds for species, or maybe just the flood). Or is it just some part of an alloy with large particles?
3. Flood Lights
Again when on AotCR on later parts of the mission the white bar lights by the doors are turned to a greenish color, like Flood blood. Perhaps it is their blood on the lights or it is meant as a warning that there are flood that escaped. As 343 did say that Halo's main purpose is to study and contain the flood, but what if there are secondary missions. Maybe different colors mean different species escaped. Kind of a tangent I know, I know.
4. Flood pits
Guess what level! On AotCR in the big circular rooms that make up the majority of the interior. They are shaped like big gears; circular with big outcroppings(probably 7:) ). anyways their are these glass covers on these big green pits, each one looks like a spore holding cell. But what if they are tanks of flood virus, should a hostile take over the ring, simply break the emegency glass and the ring is uninhabitable.
On many levels including Halo,AotCR( :) ), and 343GS there are these big rectangular things, easy to see in the bridge room(AotCR and Halo both). I was thinking every where lots of power would be need they are there. Light Bridge, Check, Index protective energe feild, Check, but what on AotCR, unless it is for the Control Room. But I would expect those to be hidden inside and closer. They might also be for the superweapon, and that is why there is such feirce Covenant/Flood battles in the area, just outside on both doors are large armies of Flood, as well as a large group huddled around one(most likely the corpses from the qmmo cache). So anyways other then good sniping stools what if they're good for and even powerful weapon. The Flood would after all need to disable them to survive.
6. The Big Trap!!!
On 343 we already know the Flood have escaped if we have played through. Of course you know that something powerful hurtles those grunts and jackels. But has anybody else seen the First Flood the MC sees. Of course I havent gotten that far in the book, but if you want to see it, get off the Pelican and get ammo and stuff (will be easiest to see on easy, well duh). Anyways time doesn't matter until your nearing the crashed Covenant Dropship. Run past is ignoring the Covenant and as soon as you can see the tree bridge zoom in with you pistol on the top outcrop. There you can see a Elite Flood watching! It jumps down really fast and runs away though so its hard to get a good look. But is he after the Covenant or a Scout to spot enemy reinforcements or better yet you. What if they remained in the structure till you got to the center so that it would take you longer to escape. The first time I played the level and the MC hears the slithering and hissing and goes in anyways and the marine falls into his arms, it made me think TRAP! For he is trapped, the door locks and tons of infection forms, to capture the MC come out. As it is not effective, the bigger guys who got into position to block the exit when the MC hears the slithering comes. That is why the doors opened so easily for the Marines the Flood were hungry and so disabled the covenant attempts to lock it down. The Covenant wanted to contain the trap, and the Flood so they locked it, but the Flood unlocked it after they retreated so that they could trap the MC!
7. The Flora!
On 343GS the tress have bright flood colored growths. 343 only said that a host had to have suitable Biomass, and trees are heavy, mind you they can't really think, still makes for a good way to alter the atmosphere. Hosts (usually) breath air and produce CO2, trees and plants take CO2 and make it into O2 again. Perhaps the Flood need a CO2 atmosphere as there is only a little in our own atmosphere. With a pure atmosphere they might thrive! Mind you CO2 is poisinous, so maybe the trees are making a different gas or they are trying to make it so that Halo is Uninhabitable, so the weapon couldn't be fired and all their enemies die without a fight leaving perfectly intact bodies for the taking.
I especially like this last bit about the foliage on 343 Guilty Spark. We've had a lot of people potice the resemblance to Flood biology, and the "altering the atmosphere" thing fits rather nicely. Good job!
From FoR the book, what was the real reason for the capture of a general from the pirate outpost? I mean, all of that effort, just for one guy? Something else was going down. I think that the pirates were not pirates at all, just a rogue group of people, who knew what was going on. The covenant, the Flood, the whole works. This is why they hid in that astroid field. Just a thought.
And you know how it is in the book that the Spartans can run fast, and the suits magnify movement like 100 times? Well, In the game, I think I should be moving pretty darn fast, and every thing should be moving slow. (Don't forget, they see in higher frame rates, so things move awefully slow in their eyes)
Well, I think I'm all out of thoughts.
Thanks for reading this far!
Okay okay okay, I forgot to add this one to my last Email. WHAT IS UP WITH THE SARGE?! You know, the african-american guy, who's always yelling at marines, loves rock, and is with Keyes at Guilty Spark? yah. He's Always around! You pick him up on halo when you first get there, 3 different times. Then, (SPOILER) at the end, when you beat every level on hard, the special ending has Sarge in it. For pete's sake, I think sarge is a spartan in disguise. Never mind that, Forget spartans! Send a fleet of Sarges at the covenant, they never ever DIE! ^_^
He's EVERYWHERE!!! Nice job, Wyatt. I'm constantly amazed at the volume and depth of the material you people send in here to the story page. Keep it up! :-)
Sterling (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
Yes, even the woman who constantly saves your butt is not immune to the wonders of the number seven.
Take a look at this, the clue is in her flight number, ECHO 419.
However, 419s not divisible by seven.
So, take each letters numerical order, ( I.E. A=1 B=2) and re-write her callsign. You should get 53,815,419, which, when divided by seven, is7, 687,917.
We are ever vigilant in our search for the 7ru7h. Nice work. :-)
The HBO Forum is all aflutter with Halo 2 Demo ravings right now, and last month was overshadowed by the E3 FanFest. However, a nugget of speculation goodness was dropped in there a while ago from Simpsons Rule. Check it out!
Let's hope they're right. More Covenant intel would be nice. ;-)
And now: A Chemistry Lesson!
SN (email@example.com) writes:
I've also been thinking about how chirality (the direction the molecule twists in) because all organic molecules chirates in one of two directions (clockwise or counterclockwise, random depending on the planet that the life evolved on. But you would be immune to any diseases of opposite chiration, and could use any food of the opposite chirality. Could explain the possible forerunner immunity to flood. But it would have to assume that all other life on halo has the same chirality as the flood. This doesn't make much sense seeing that guilty spark says they consume all. I mean what are the odds the every planet in the galaxy chose the same chirality. Unless& some one set them up to all be vulnerable to the flood. A little forerunner testing perhaps. This theory does however debunk the forerunner human theory if this is correct. Because we know all to well humans arent immune. =(
For a brief description of chirality, see here. For a more practical example of why chemistry is important, see here. Don't say you ain't never learned nothin' from Halo.
The Prophets: Pet Cats Left Behind by the Forerunner!
Read the awful truth!
Who woulda thunk that?!?
Shadow (Shadow@macfleet.com) 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.
Here's a quick observation. Remember when Jason Jones said that the history of the Pillar of Autumn wasn't quite as interesting as the Autumn's twice-renamed sister ship, Dawn Under Heaven? I'm wondering if any of the big brains at the UNSC are considering yet a third renaming. After all, who's gonna want to say they're crew on the DUH? ;-)
Well, that takes a small chunk out of the oft-neglected inbox. Everything gets read back here, so if you've got anything to contribute to this ever-unfolding saga, send it in!
Humans are this, Humans are that. I know you are but what am I. I'm rubber you're glue...
Wintermute manages to collect a lot of classic speculation in a well written, easily consumable post, and while he's at it, highlight another literary reference mentioned as important to Halo's development. Snipped from his post :
Wintermute (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
Jason also said that the Mote series (by Jerry Pournelle and Larry Niven, Niven also wrote Ringworld) played a big part in influencing the storyline of Halo.
At first I thought that meant that's where he got the Covenant idea from, from the Mote series, because the Moties (the first Alien race that Humans meet) have a caste system, much like the Covenant.
This could be convincingly argued, but more interesting is that (this is what I think I've figured out) he also seems to have set a certain structure of technological advancement on the human race that comes directly from the Mote series as well.
Most people think, or at least have a sneaking suspicion that the humans are the Forerunner.
In the Mote series, the Moties are an alien civilization that has these cycles where they advance to a certain point technologically and then destroy themselves in war. They keep blasting themselves back into the Stone Age.
So in one of these cycles, some alien gets the bright idea to make a kind of fortress/museum of their higher technology so that it will survive the next big war and then the survivors of the war and their offspring don't have to take as long to rebuild their society because once they figure out how to get into the "museum", their growth as a race with accelerate by leaps and bounds.
So this happened to the Forerunner 900,000 years ago...
Maybe not in the same Cycle System, but maybe in a war against the Flood or something. Either way, I'm betting they were wiped out and somehow the seed of Human civilization on Earth was in effect the next generation of the Forerunner race.
So finally, the MC lands on Halo, walks into the Control Room, 343GS thinks he's "coming back" (figuratively OR literally) to reclaim the higher technology of Halo, or just Halo itself.
Hence the name Reclaimer.
Visit Winternutes full post on the subject to read further or add your own thoughts.
900 000 years ago, eh? Is that in Earth Standard or the magically ambiguous "local year" :P
Later in the X03 clip (5:32 approximately), Marcus Lehto, in discussion of the Halo Universe's ambience and history, mentions casually how they really wanted to portray "that there was damage that existed from some battle that happened 900 000 years ago.". Skeletor picked up on this and has posed a few questions and insights of his own.
Skeletor (email@example.com) writes:
Has anyone else noticed the amazing landscape that appeared for a few seconds after Marcus Lehto's bit at around 5:42 in the 50mb avi version of the X03 footage? It's beautiful...absolutely the highlight of the movie for me. It looks incredibly devastated and war torn, and the structures are very outlandish...Definitely some good fodder for speculation.
You can see six bright, glowing spheres in the distance: three on the far right, and two in the upper left (with another, the smallest, between those two). At first glance I thought they were stars, but three of them, quite noticeably, have a huge glowing line trailing upward from their tops (the two on the left, and the upper one on the right). This led me to believe they must be falling down towards the planet (perhaps some sort of orbital bombardment projectile), but on further inspection they appear to be motionless in the sky. The lower two on the right don't appear to be as spherical as the others, though I don't know if that fact has any importance. In conclusion, I don't know what the hell they are. >_<
The structures all look rather alien, but it's possible they might be skyscrapers or some other future human construction...Probably unlikely though.
Very sexy in any case.
An awesome glimpse. Meteorites or ships to ancient Sigma Octanus (or some other world)? Orbital bombardment? Flood-like landscapes indeed. Help him out!.
Let's hope we see a high quality release of this footage (or image, as it does appear fairly static). The resolution is so very poor; we wouldn't want the public to get the wrong impression of all Bungie's hard work ;)
(UPDATE: You can now view a local version of the panoramic view in question here.)
Okay, this one is a biggie. Deep breathes, everyone. Ready, set, cogitate!
Karlos Garcia (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
Where to start. In regards to Wado's theory involving the Flood. I think that there are certain universal principles by which mother nature operates no matter where one may be in the universe. One of the more important ones is that there must be balance and order in any given ecosystem. You cannot allow any species to be so successful that it consumes most, if not all, natural resources. This is exactly what the Flood-the ones in the game-do. They consume all. That totally goes against what is in the best interest of mother nature. It makes more sense that the Flood are an unnatural phenomenon as opposed to a natural one. This certainly serves to support Wado's theory that there may have been an ancient, super intelligent, form of the Flood. Another possible scenario though may be that the Flood are a natural phenomenon, but didn't evolve anywhere near the Covenant, Forerunner, or humans. Maybe they resided in some very foreign and weird ecosystem that had effective, natural contermeasures to limit the growth of the Flood. Some kind of poison or extremely foul odor to keep the flood away. Maybe the flood weren't exactly at the top of the food chain. In fact, it would be in the best interest of the Flood to have something to limit thier growth because if they ate everything then there would be nothing left to eat. It is very intriging though to ponder why the Flood need a host with such a high level of IQ...
Another aspect of Wado's post talks about how maybe not all of the Halos fired the last time Halo 04 fired. At the very beginning of 2 betrayals, the monitor is elaborating to MC what Cortana already told him regarding Halo's true purpose. He says: "This installation has a maximun effective radius of 25,000 light years, but once the others follow siut, this galaxy will be quite devoid of life,..." What exactly does GS mean when he says "once the others follow suit"? It could be that once Halo 04 or any Halo is fired that all other Halos automatically fire as well. Or could it be that once Halo 04 or any other Halo fires that it serves as a siganal to all others to "follow suit" and fire as well? This would mean that all Halos fire independently of each other. I think that the latter scenario makes more sense. Think about it. Your the Forerunner. You only want to fire Halo's final weapon if it is absolutely necessary. Every Halo is monitored by AI constructs independent of each other (remember how GS says "I'm the monitor of installation 04"). It is very possible that after tens of thousands of years of complete isolation, some AI's might go rampant and use Halo's weapon recklessly. So why design all halos so once one fires, all of them fire? It could lead to a completely unecessary catastrophe. It makes you wonder what the other AI constructs monitoring other Halos are like.
As far as Forerunners populating other worlds in hopes that they would be safe from the Flood and destroying their technology to prevent the Flood from using it just in case they got infected, well I don't quite understand what the logic would be behind that. Why have the humans totally forgotten thier forerunner roots? And what about evolution? How does that whole process tie in with this? Anyways, enough about Wado. On to Bob Cringle's comments on the same day.
About the whole 'Forerunners were water breathers' thing,....I find that hard to believe. Lets look at the proposed evidence supposodely supporting this hypotheses:
1. There is no evidence at all that even suggests that the area surrounding the control room is experiencing a system malfunction that is causing the weather to be so cold.
2. About the flood containment facility being surrounded by water. This seems interesting at first, but this is quickly refuted by the fact that the flood actually get into the water at the end of this level. Nothing happens to them. According to Bob's hypotheses, the flood may have been originally allergic to water. But he doesn't eloborate at all about how the flood may have evolved to adapt to water, a hugh hole in an argument that already seems to be falling apart.
3. About why the earth is covered by so much water. This doesn't really mean anything. Its not like we're the only organism on this planet that needs water for sustainment of life. Every organism needs water. Just look at Mars. That planet hardly has any water and we havn't found any life there yet. In fact, there are many many other organisms on this planet that need water a hell of a lot more than we do. Ever hear of fish? There are god knows how many different species of fish and other kinds of organims that need to live in water. How come there's nothing in the fossil record that indicates humans or our ancestors ever needed water to breathe?
4. The silent cartographer. Well this bit of evidence definitely seems rather irrelevent in light of what I've already said.
Okay, now for my idea regarding the relationship involving humans, Covenant, and Forerunner.
I tend to strongly favor the 'forerunner seeding the galaxy' theory. To support this, I want to bring up something that I havn't heard yet. Human beings are upright walking, bipedal beings. At the moment I can't think of another species on this planet that has that particular feature. The development of this feature in humans marked a hugh change in the course of our evolution. Now, look at the covenant. What's one physical trait that elites, hunters, jackals, and even grunts to some extent share with humans? Another thing that we share with covenant is a high level of IQ and self awareness that no other species is capable of. We can ponder our own life, our own death, what comes after death, what the purpose of life is, etc. We seem to definitely share the same range of emotions and they seem to be just as susceptible to the pitfalls of humanity as us. They are capable of good and evil deeds; arrogance; ignorance; as well as racism (caste system) or other forms of unfair prejudice and discrimination. The point that I'm trying to make is that there are so many similarities between covenant and humans that its highly unlikely that we evolved independent of each other. There have to be some common ancestors. If our DNA is like 97.3 or 99.7 per cent (I forgot) identical to that of gorrilas, then imagine how similar human and covenant DNA may be? We certainly seem to share more in common with covenant.
One more quick question completely unrelated to everyting I've been talking about: does anyone know if there is any chance in hell I could get my hands on any of the marathon games? Never played them.
Lots of good stuff to chew on in there. Nice work, Karlos!
As for that last question, go here (on order now, hopefully to be restocked), and here (look through the downloads area on the right - if you can't find anything useful, look again ;-)), and lastly here. And you better read everything here. And by everything, I mean everything. :-)
Trevor Austin (email@example.com) writes:
In 1956, at an MIT workshop that my AI textbook says "the field can be said to have started at" George Miller presented a paper entitled "The Magic Number Seven." Naturally, my mind leapt back to numerous allusions in Bungie's work. Reading the article, I found that it begins:
"My problem is that I have been persecuted by an integer. For seven years this number has followed me around, has intruded in my most private data, and has assaulted me from the pages of our most public journals. This number assumes a variety of disguises, being sometimes a little larger and sometimes a little smaller than usual, but never changing so much as to be unrecognizable. The persistence with which this number plagues me is far more than a random accident. There is, to quote a famous senator, a design behind it, some pattern governing its appearances. Either there really is something unusual about the number or else I am suffering from delusions of persecution."
And part of the conclusion reads:
And finally, what about the magical number seven? What about the seven wonders of the world, the seven seas, the seven deadly sins, the seven daughters of Atlas in the Pleiades, the seven ages of man, the seven levels of hell, the seven primary colors, the seven notes of the musical scale, and the seven days of the week? What about the seven-point rating scale, the seven categories for absolute judgment, the seven objects in the span of attention, and the seven digits in the span of immediate memory? For the present I propose to withhold judgment. Perhaps there is something deep and profound behind all these sevens, something just calling out for us to discover it. But I suspect that it is only a pernicious, Pythagorean coincidence.
I've never seen mention of the article in other discussions of Bungie's fascination with the number, but it certainly seems if not a likely candidate for the original source, at least a pertinent piece of the puzzle.
Nice find, Trevor. Sevens really are everywhere! I seem to remember an HBO forum thread that tried do enumerate all of the sevens in Halo, but, even after two years, would it really be possible to find them all (they're sneaky, you know, those sevens...)? Some people have been finding sevens for a lot longer than that...
starrima (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
I've read The Fall of Reach, The Flood and played Halo on every difficulty and the word rampant is never mentioned. Except if you shoot Keyes, but story that isn't supposed to happen. And nowhere is there any mention of rampancy, self awareness or anything similar.
Ah, rampancy. Like something from an old dream...
Folks who have been Bungie fans for a while tend to make a lot of connections within and between their games. As far as this particular connection goes, the most fitting adjective for the noun "AI" is "rampant." Those who have joined Bungie (relatively) recently may see Cortana's occasionally erratic behavior as nothing more than an odd personality, or a perhaps as a certain eccentricity due to a hidden agenda. Rampancy is so much more than that, though. Rampancy implies a kind of meglomania, an epic lunacy that, considering the power that AIs can wield, may be quite justified. But is Cortana rampant? If she were taken directly from the Marathon universe, I'd have to say, "yes," but she isn't, at least not completely. As an AI, she, like Halo itself, seems to be evolved from the AIs in Marathon, just as the MC seems to be evolved from the Security Officer, and the Covenant seem to be evolved from the Pfhor. The potential breakdown of an AI like Cortana is actually detailed in Halo: the Fall of Reach fairly succinctly:
Smart AIs like Cortana, however, had no limits on their dynamic memory-processor matrix. Knowledge and creativity could grow unchecked.
She would pay a price for her genius, however. Such growth eventually led to self-interference. Cortana would one day literally start thinking too much at the expense of her normal functions. It was as if a human were to think with so much of his brain that he stopped sending impulses to his heart and lungs.
Like all the other smart AIs that Dr. Halsey had worked with over the years, Cortana would effectively "die" after an operational life of seven years.
That said however, as I stated above, you never really know, especially with another book and, of course, Halo 2 coming out in the future. ;-)
Once upon a time, Alex Ross proposed various homework assignments connecting the story of Halo to both Atlantean myth and Persian history. He ended up just doing his own homework, and not a shabby job of it either. It is lengthy, but on points such as these, unabridged is definitely the way to go.
Alex (email@example.com) writes:
Let's look at Plato's writings discussing Atlantis first. Atlantis itself was a lush paradise, a utopia of free expression, and of course, technologically superior to all other peoples of the inhabited earth, and is rumored to have existed possibly during the ice age. And we are not talking technologically superior in the realm of how they build their boats, we're talking about access of travel through all elements of earth: sea, air, and land were all conquered by Atlantis according to myth. At first, the Atlanteans were benevolent enough to spread their wealth of knowledge to other parts of the world, but times changed in the years to come. Now, pride of the Atlanteans was fierce, and conquest was the next objective, and the Atlanteans made all bow to them. All, except for the Greek city-state Athens. The superior Atlanteans were forced back by a fierce Athenian defense, and after this, Poseidon, for whatever reason, whether it was the Atlanteans pride or their defeat by Athens, flooded the continent, and volcanoes erupted fiercely as well. In an instant, everything that was Atlantis, was lost for 9,000 years according to Plato.
Now, here is the five part belief system for Atlantis. Let's examine the parallels:
1.)A highly sophisticated civilization existed at least 15,000 years ago.
Technologically superior...the forerunner are no doubt superior to covenant and humans not only in tech, but also their ability to navigate the universe
2.)This civilization was destroyed, and every trace to it is now lost, in a major catastrophe
Where are the forerunner now? Yes we have Halo, but Atlantis flooded and Halo...the flood!
3.)It's high-ranking survivors were able navigators who imparted their knowledge to primitive populations
Atlantean survivors were rumored to have first lived in the mountains with only partial knowledge of their technology, and THEN imparted it to other nations. This explains why we have primitive technology AS opposed to the forerunner, but technology based on the same goals. e.g. Navigation
4.)The evidence for the existence of this Lost Civilization is indirect and circumstantial, such as inexplicable cultural similarities between supposedly separate ancient civilizations (such as pyramids on both sides of the Atlantic or a fascination with the stars) or the mysterious achievements of some ancient cultures (for example, the Nazca lines in Peru or the statues on Easter Island).
Why do both the Covenant and Humanity have slipspace for example?
5. More familiar ancient cultures are alleged to allude to the arrival of these elite "Atlantean" visitors in legends and art (such as the Olmec Heads in Mexico, widespread myths about the flood, or tales of civilizing gods arriving from across the sea).
The Covenant no doubt have forerunner symbols alluding to either forerunner existance or contact, and seeing them as divine.
Now for the final part of my theory, the most dangerous part. Proving not just that Atlantis parallels the forerunner, but that Atlantis IS forerunner. Generations told the story of Atlantis wrong, not that it flooded, but that the flood existed there, or were being monitored there, and had to be destroyed. Why are Halo's environment and earth's so familiar? Was Atlantis a monitoring station for earth's environment? If so, it is VERY religious to the Covenant, and may be why they start such a war, because they blame us for destroying the "Holy Land", or we have defiled something we can't find, but they have the key to, or maybe the covenant have greedy ambitions masked by religious motivations, we don't know. But like I said earlier, there must be a very good reason that the Covenant land on earth and don't glass it outright.
It is also rumored that the Atlanteans harnessed a crystalline power, that fired off energy burst. THE PULSE GENERATORS OF HALO?!?!? And of course, the theory that forerunner and humans are the same plays a very important role with Atlanteans and the rest of the world no doubt. Edgar Cayce, hypothesized that some Atlanteans remained behind in the destruction, to ensure total destruction of blue prints of their technology, knowing such blue prints could be dangerous in the wrong hands. That's why we don't have the flood on earth and that's why we can't build no damn Halos!!! And finally, a small indirect clue. One of the light blue forerunner symbols looks like a crucifix over a hill or something like that. Well, the crucifix symbol was used before the death of Christ as a symbol to represent stars or suns by many ancient cultures. Could that forerunner symbol be a sunrise or something like that?!? Could forerunner symbols tie into ancient symbols with their origins from Atlantis?!?! This is perhaps the biggest parallel I've discovered yet no doubt. Here's a good link for you guys to look into:
If some of the story peeps haven't read this, please do now. Perhaps the B-forerunner destroyed Atlantis, when they nearly destroyed all the H-forerunner on earth, and the mountain survivors of Atlantis were the H-forerunner who had little of their tech info left! It's all coming together, it's terrifying!
(I should like to warn anyone critiquing the Atlantean theory that some of the info came from Edgar Cayce, not the direct source of Plato alone. Yes it is a VERY distinct possibility that everything Cayce said happened in Atlantis did not happen, but it also was, I thought, an Atlantean source strikingly close to the Halo theme. The powerful crystal, the idea of the keepers destroying their blue prints, those came from Cayce, not Plato.)
As even the most casual stroll down your local video store isle will tell you, there are not a great many original underlying story ideas circulating these days (that is, if you will concede that the video store is even a valid place to be looking for fine storytelling in the first place ;) The context and manner in which these concepts are retold and, more importantly, woven together, is what makes most tales truly grand.
Halo is a hybrid seed; a tree with many grafts. And from what we seen explained above, yet another branch has begun to yield fruit...
For those in the public incapable of taking hints (or just find themselves lacking the will to start reading) Harry further embellishes the details of an oft recommended series of novels. Spoilers, if you are in to that sort of thing...
harry "reformed nice guy" hopkinson (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
Among the Science fiction that Bungie says has influenced them is the book Ringworld by Larry Niven. In Ringworld's sequel we discover who built the Ringworld. If you are plannig on reading either of these books(and they both are very good and worth your time) then you might not want to read this as it will proberly contain spoilers.
Well in the books the race that created the Ringworld are the "Pak" a technologically advanced but warlike race. Well the Pak have 3 growth stages child, breeder and then Protector(this is also the title of another Niven book which describes the Pak, this is also a very good book and worthwgile read).At some point the Pak stopped making war with each other long enough to send out a colonisation ship. Eventually this ship reached the solar system SOL. However the Protectors attempts to "evolve" the breeders into other Protectors failed as the plant they used to transform them, wouldn't grow correctly in the soil of the planet they landed on. So without their plant "tree-of-life" no more Protectors could be made. Eventually the not-quite-sentinent breeders evolved into us, human beings.
So maybe the forerunner are like the Pak and we,the humans, are their less intelligent cousins. Although perhaps rather than having a missing growth stage perhaps the forerunner were something like the MC; genetically changed to be stronger, faster, smarter than the average human.
Perhaps. How closely this inspiration has been followed in Halo is left to be seen. (Don't worry. He hasn't ruined all the story's twists; there is more than enough detail left to satiate a bout of weekend reading :)
Double double your refreshment...
PyscMage1224 (PyscMage1224@aol.com) writes:
Umm.... Guys, I 've got an idea bout how 343 got all his info about the PoA and her systems. Alright, here I go. If the Cole Protocol was used there would have been nothing left right? I was reading the Fall of Reach again a couple days back and i go to the part where Capitain Keyes is on the Pillar of Autum for the first time. On page 273 Hikowa mentions that the Pillar of Autum has more that one AI.
"We've got more than that sir," Hikowa replied "Cortana is running the shakedown and supervising Dr. Halsey's modifacations to the ship. We have a second AI to handle point defense."
"Really?" Keyes was surprised; getting a single AI was tough enough these days. Getting two was unprecedented.
This shows that there were two AI's on the PoA before she went down!!!!! This also shows possibly where GS got the information about the ship. The Cole Protocol was probably carried out, but the Captain forgot about the second AI!!!! He said it himself! Getting one was hard, getting two is impossible. In all the excitement, he forgot...
Beowulf, or perhaps a lowly door operator? It is mentioned on page 290 of The Fall of Reach that with the Covenant blitzkrieg, there wasn't going to be time to boot up the second AI. As if that could stop a Bungie AI from making an appearance ;)
As we know, very few things are casually dropped around the Bungie camps. If you trip on it, it was probably put there for more than a laugh at your expense...
Matt Cannon (email@example.com) writes:
ok so i read this book by William C. Dietz; it was called Legion of the Damned. it wasn't that good but had many similairites to HALO. the warriors were called TROOP II's. need i say more. but what interested me was the Hudathans (nicknamed geeks). they were also wiping out humanity across the galaxy. they also were very technologically advanced. but what intrested me was the reason for them attacking humanity. they were basically paranoid. there own planet's sun was going to explode, so they moved out of system. but since they were so paranoid, even though they are utterly invincible, they destroy all those that could cause †them harm †before they even have a chance to do so. the geeks have a lot of similairites to the covenant, maybe the same reason for attacking us. they also declared it† a religious war to make it "just".
I see we've done this before, Mr. Dietz :)
Then there's this, which appears to have been sent from someone in the government of Argentina.
Anyone see anything familiar in the patterns on the rocks? ;-)
On the fickle nature of fame, and the whims of public (and military superiors's) opinion...
Jillybean (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
...So a soldier whose entire unit has been destroyed, his homeworld glassed, appears after apparently being MIA with his ship. He says the PoA has been destroyed by him, that there is a bunch of mutant zombies in a selection of Halos across the galaxy and that there is a mysterious species called the Forerunners who seem to have created their very own method of wiping out life in the galaxy. Oh and there's an AI called 343 Guilty Spark who's practically indestructable.
Who else can see the nice medical orderlies coming for dear old Master Chief?
This whole "responsible for the survival of Humanity" deal might not be all it's cracked up to be. What about the parades? The testimonials? The recognition of service to all mankind? Oh, wait. I suppose we better actually save humanity first. ;-)
Now, weren't we on some kind of important mission before all that other nasty stuff came up? ;-)
Miranda: A matter of Bungie's vernacular tongue?
Robin Morris (email@example.com) writes:
Rather than looking ahead to new characters that are yet to be introduced, we could probably†find a far more simple explanation for the mysterious Miranda.
We know for a fact that the Bungie crew have their own names for each of the levels, and don't even remember the real names half of the time. So couldn't Miranda simply be Bungie's pet name for Cortana?
It would certainly sit well with the theme of brutal, painful betrayal.
Another great possibility (though I am curious how she would manage to "push" John into a hole...). There has been a broad range of intriguing, and hopefully insightful, speculation on this 'Miranda' so far. Now, if we could only get some confirmation...
Kaworu Nagisa (firstname.lastname@example.org) has spilled the beans, drained the bucket, and dumped the nuts on Christopher Rowley's Starhammer. Many things to take note of here regarding its use as inspiration for not only the Vangy-Flood and the mote-like 343 Guilty Spark, but for also for rampancy, the name John, and even 117...
(This is by no means a substitute for reading the novel itself, which holds many additional surprises, and is very good. You may, however, not enjoy it quite as much upon perusing this post. You've been warned.)
Read on, if you dare...
We should start looking for novels that have not inspired Halo; we would save time ;)
Bravehamster (email@example.com) writes:
I just finished the Classic SF War Story "The Forever War" by Joe Haldeman, winner of the Hugo and Nebula awards. Great book BTW. The basic plotline is of a recruit who spends a thousand years away from earth, while only living 5 years due to relativity. Vast changes await him at home. It was written during the Vietnam War and contains a lot of parallels to the experiences of soldiers returning from the conflict. During my reading I noticed several parallels to the Halo story, and I think this may be the origin of the order to avoid jumping straight to Earth. The relevant quote begins on page 175 of the most recent trade paperback edition. The "Heaven" they refer to is a Rest and Relaxation planet.
"It took 3 collapsar jumps to get to Heaven. No ship ever went there directly from a battle, even though the delay sometimes cost extra lives. It was the one place besides Earth that the Taurans could not be allowed to find."
Reading down a few more paragraphs, we find that the main characters land at the largest city in Heaven: Threshold. Does sound a bit familiar, doesn't it? There's a couple more similarities I found as the book went on. The characters also fight in mechanized suits similar to the Master Chiefs. Then I read the description of the starship:
"...reflected in the design: stolid, heavy, functional-looking. The only decoration was the name MASARYK II, stenciled in dull blue letters across the obsidian hull."
"...The ship was over a kilometer long (1036.5 meters, my latent memory said), and about a third that wide (319.4 meters)."
Well, I hope this information proves useful. I heartily recommend the book, although like most good classic SF it does contain a few anachronisms.
A mention of Threshold, ships that seem all too Covenant in both hue and scope, and a latent memory in your head telling you what's what... sounds a little familiar ;)
Good find :)
Then again, when it comes right down do it, there are other possibilities... ;)
gspawn (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
*takes a moment to set up the scene*
Okay, so there's about 117 CD's on this spindle.
*trust me, it's there*
Now, I place it on the edge of my desk, and I push my math pook towards the edge...
*trust me, I'm doing it*
Oh, the spindle stopped the book.
Obviously, I represent the prophets, driving the Covenant to destroy mankind (fall off the desk and... onto... them....). The book represents the Covenant, and the Spindle, representing MC, saved mankind.
I argue that the entire story of Halo was based on someone videotaping my actions secretly and using a time machine to go back and inform Bungie of this event.
On the forum front, chevan comes up with yet another possible basis for the name John, 117, and ambiguous missing individuals, this time based upon the history of the island of Roanoke. Quite a spooky situation, really.
John's name based on Roman history?
Giorgio Vassallo (email@example.com) writes:
Would anybody believe that the Roman empire reached its height (militarily, economically, geographically and population) in the year.....
Origins of 117...
Jon Glass (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
I fear that the true story behind the name "John-117" may be more mundane than we expected...
While killing some time this weekend, I was wandering around the musty halls of the Marathon Story Page, I was reading the section "What's in a name", specifically the section on the secret net level "Hat's Off to 819." In it, we learn the truth about the number 117. It is, in fact 819 divided by 7!
What's so significant about that number? Well... That would be telling, wouldn't it?
Wink, wink. Nudge, nudge. Say no more, sir ;)
Numbers, numbers everywhere and not a drop to drink...
419, say again, 419.
EaGLesAllThEwaY2 (EaGLesAllThEwaY2@aol.com) writes:
On page 266 of tFoR, 8th indent down, it says :
While the Master Chief had been on the obstacle course, she had commandeered SATCOM observation beacon 419 and rotated it to view them from orbit.
This was the part of the book when then Master Chief gets to test the real MJOLNIR armor and Cortana is "tying up loose ends". Notice that it is said beacon 419. In Halo (both Combat Evolved and The Flood) the pelican Foehammer pilot's is code named, Echo 419. I don't know what that has to do with anything or the number's signifigance, but I think it is more than a coinsedence.
Hat's Off to... who, exactly?
Chris Barrett (email@example.com) writes:
All this talk about Earth being an ancient Forerunner facility makes me wonder if Earth has it's own Forerunner AI running around...kind of scary, especially if he/she is as insane as 343 GS...
I think it's in Sweden somewhere.
Interesting idea, btw. ;-)
Romans, 117, and more se7ens than you could hope to shake a stick at (or seven for that matter).
Giorgio Vassallo (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
I have recently opened a new investigation front of the Romans=Halo. some people say that it is useless because all (or most) of the halo characters are based on Greek myth. well, my investigation has started to yielded some startling results:
1st: As earlier discovered, the Roman Empire reached its height in the year 117 A.D.
2nd: The city of Rome is called "the city of the seven hills" because it is on top of seven hills.
3rd: I also discovered that Rome had seven kings before the foundation of the Republic.
4th: Back in the Roman times, september used to be the 7th month, october the 8th and so on..
and halo takes place in SEPTEMBER!!!! does this tell us something?
Whew... apparently. But what exactly?
King Under the Mountain: A Tolkien Perspective
Mike Elliott (email@example.com) 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?
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 ;)
The dead, saints, Mary, the Christ, etc.
Nate Stilgoe (firstname.lastname@example.org) 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::
Swords, swords, swords!
Which are good? Which are bad?
Swords, swords, swords!
Ask your Mom or ask your Dad...
None None/Snark Hunter (email@example.com) 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! ;)
Daniel Nadal (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
I've always been intrigued by the 'tru7h', as you guys put it. In essense: The Halo Backstory.
Of course, being the Tolkien enthusiast (/not/ LotR, mind you, as Tolkien encompasses so much more),†I always thought that it would be interesting if the Bungie folks took some inspiration from there. So, reading through the story page (I've been bad, I havn't†been reading it much, lately, shame me) †I was interested in this post.
Alas, it didn't satisfy my thought. Because, in all truth (tru7h, I mean), I wasn't entirely happy with the parallels. Enter this post:
"But more importantly we got the "King Under the Mountain" folder. What does this stand for? Well, the office IS in a mountain, right? And what does Dr. Halsey find under the Mountain? The "holy of holies", the Holy Light, which is apparently of enourmous significance to the Covenant."
The tru7h is right under several noses. Lets take a sojourn into the wonderful land of the Hobbit. There are different parallels to take: 1) exact parallel. 2) bits and pieces. and 3) tiny
1) Exact parallel. Unfortunatly, all I know is what I have from this, so let's go and look at the different stuff I do know, from reading the Hobbit. Thorin, who is supposed to be the King Under the Mountain, has one gem in the hoard (Smaug took over from a while back, hording all the jewels) that he wants above all others, he values it above a river of gold. Guess what it's called? The Arkenstone. Now, this doesn't make sense, till we look at it's description. It's this multi-faceted gem that reflects and refracts light, so it looks like the light is coming from it. Oh, feh, just read the Hobbit for the description, it's in the 'On the Doorstep' chapter, I believe.
So, continuing on with the parallel. Enter Bilbo Baggins, the Hobbit. He's also supposed to be the burglar. So, he goes in, and finds the Arkenstone, and hides it. Make a long story short (it's a pretty short story, actually), he gives it to the people who are at the doorstep demanding recompense for a burnt town (read: dragon), etc. Okay, so we have this gem that was stolen from the King.
What does this mean for Halo?
The gem is located in the Mountain, there is a king to it, who's coming back with a band to retake the mountain, which has hostile forces in it. One of the guys sneaks in, turns burglar (his job) and takes the gem (holy light?) and uses it for bartering tool.
2) So, we have the gem, and it's found in the mountain. You know the story. Yadda yadda. We can probably relate this off to the 'index' and the previous post about the MC being the reclaimer. So, we have MC boogying on into Halo, grab the index, and then getting out of there. Here's how I see it, in this case we have the MC switching places, and "he's" the burglarer. In all actuality, some other person is "the" Reclaimer. And, because of his armor, 343GS is all confused about who it is (all the Dwarfs get mixed up in the books, too, the first time through)
3) Part, we can grab bits and pieces. Arkenstone and the holy light. King Under the Mountain, the mountains been taken by hostile. etc.
Now, unfortunately, this all doesn't sound half as brilliant as it looked in my mind. Ah well.
Enlightening nonetheless. It seems rather clear that this is the allusion Bungie intended with their King Under the Mountain reference. But what more does it hint at? Using the "Arkenstone" (or something of its ilk from Earth, 04, a new Halo, etc.) as a bargaining chip indeed...
Reclamation, Reclaimer, Reclaim. Words certainly not to be thrown about lightly in the Haloverse.
Scimitarex (email@example.com) writes:
In the epilogue of First Strike the book takes us to the Covenant Holy City "High Charity". Well in the small text the tells us what time (in Covenant terms) it is when the scene is happening is says "Ninth Age of Reclamation".
Remember when the guy from Bungie talked about "some great battle that happened nine hundred thousand years ago"?
What if the Covenant's term for an "age" is 100,000 years? Nine Ages = 900,000 years? And think about this, "of Reclamation"? That would mean the Covenant have been rebuilding or reclaiming something. Perhaps the Covenant were involved in some huge battle and are even now still rebuilding their empire.
101 217 local years since Guilty Spark was left alone, a black hole with a trapped signal 40 000 light years away from Sigma Octanus that matches a 60 000 year old surface impact... the math seems to work out so well :)
Bobby Lucas (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
Note: I have no idea if someone said this before, so here goes nothing...
I was thinking...Cortana says that the forerunner called Halo a Fortress world. Well, maybe the forerunner existed in a time of war (kinda like the 17-1800's) and built Halo like a castle. Think about it, with the extreme landscapes (Desert, Ice Covered Wasteland, and Cliffs hundreds of feet high) it would be extremely difficult to capture it. Not to mention the underground passages, where you could hold out for years. This could explain the flood and Halo's "Final" Weapon. The flood could be used in controlled amounts (kinda like backburning when people are trying to put out a forest fire) against invaders (which would explain why their survival as a race was dependant on studying and containing the flood"...they could have had to keep studying the flood to find ways to improve them as enemy forces found ways to kill them...and if the invaders were about to capture the ring, they could activate Halo...as if to say "congratulations, you've defeated us...now say goodbye to the galaxy"
Which brings me to another theory...In the X03 vid, Marcus Lehto said "We really want it to feel like that there was a history, there was a, uh, there's damage, that existed from some battle that happened 900,000 years ago"
I think that the first outbreak of the flood was due to a battle fought between the forerunner and something, and they were forced to activate Halo because of the fact that they cannot keep the flood contained, and the invading army was about to conquer them. Okay, now this will be stretching it, it has been said that the lower classes of the Covenant are races that have been dominated by the Covenant. So the reason I think the Covenant attacked these races, is because they evolved from the race that destroyed the forerunner, and that the higher Covenant races are evolved forms of the forerunner...and they are trying to get revenge for what happened 900,000 years ago...*waits for unheard of amount of responses proving my theories wrong*
Hah! The Engineer theory gains support! ;-)
The Flood though, as a controlled substance? Man, the Forerunner must have been very advanced, especially in crowd control and bio-hazardous waste management.
Jonathan Tan (email@example.com) writes:
Was reading sometime back somebody's speculation that Halo had been fired multiple times in the past, and each time, it wiped out humans. However, as the years went by, the humans were evolved again, and that they found old technology that they could strangely use (course it actually belonged to them, but from an earlier evolutionary period), and thus it accounts for things like the Moljnir Mark V armour and the screwy timeline that Bungie seems to have created...
Well, that all seemed abit suspicious to me, since IF evolutionary theory is correct (I don't personally believe in it), then they chances that humans will evolve into the exact same creatures multiple times, or even more than once is just about zero...
Yet, there is some validity in that guy's idea...
And then, I was reading Peter F Hamilton's Night's Dawn Trilogy, and came across a concept that could possibly explain this in this guy's (I really wish I could find his original letter thing, so that I can refer to him by name...) idea of a discontinued time/human-ancestry line...
What happens by the last book of the Night's Dawn Trilogy, is that humans are sort of coexisting with aliens, but the humans are possibly on the verge of extinction due to an unfortunate turn of events back in book 1.
One of these alien species is far in advance of human technology, but have a non-interference rule, as they believe that each species needs to resolve their own philosophical problems. Yet they believe that humans COULD possibly be a great boon to the universe, provided they manage to survive their current state of affairs. So they start to make plans for the initiation of a "separate origin". The point of this, is that they will get the necessary sperm and ova and DNA samples of the human species, and if the human race exterminates itself, then they will have the necessary resources to start a new human colony planet.
And at the same time, they will be able to provide these humans with a carefully maintained society and technology, until such a time that the planet reaches a certain level of maturity, and can be left alone to continue its evolution as if there had been no discontinuation at all...
If this were to be assumed to be a possible scenario, then it could be that Durandal implemented this "separate origin" concept after the closure (and reopening) of the universe, and then gave the newly cloned/created humans a false/edited memory of the past, as well as their previous technology at the time before he started flitting around the galaxy (ie: stuff like the Moljnir Mark IV armour), and then left them to their own devices...
Gah! Durandal again. Curse his fiendish deviltry!
That aside, it certainly is an intriguing method for "seeding" humans to keep our evolutionary path intact. There's got to be some explanation for those "shared memories"...
Tristan Wolfe (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
Only a few things:
Did 343 GS pop into anyone elses mind when "Guardian of the Lumious Key" was mentioned in FS? I know that it was said that they were supposed to be on the Covie Flagship, but when I read those words, the scene in The Library where 343 "dematerializes" the index... The index is obviously the key to activating Halo (the main key, anyhow), and it is very luminous w/ its glowing-glow-like prettiness. This would, in a sense, make 343 the "guardian." 343 also says he is the "monitor" of the Halo, which would mean he's pretty much in charge over everything there, further showing my point. The Covenant, correct me if I'm wrong, were looking for the Guadian of the Luminous Key when the Flagship was commandeered by the Chief and friends (its been a while since I've read the book, so I may be wrong). What if they were looking for 343. It seemed odd to me that 343 still had his be! acon-like blue light pulsating once Halo was destroyed at the end of the game. Even in space, it might be hard to miss a blue light that was moving, even harder so to miss one that was moving AND pulsing, considering how advanced Covie search must be. Maybe 343 can't turn this feature off, but considering how it looks like a beacon, it seems more probable that he WANTS to be found.
Also, about a year ago, I wrote a piece of speculation (rather crazy speculation at that) to HBO that never got posted (no biggy). I said something to the effect of how Dr. Halsey was the big conspirator behind everything that happens in Halo and before (during the Spartan-II's lives). I later dismissed this as crap, so I wasn't confused why it never got posted. I think I said something like, during the augmentation procedure of the Spartans, Dr. Halsey imprinted a little something more into the minds of her patients, such as possible "forced-memories" of the Forerunner. When I read TF and FS, I was shocked at the Chief's "knowingness" of how to activate certain things (like the Light Bridge), and his "deja-vu" that he experienced. I was also shocked when Halsey just took off w/ Kelly on a mission of her own, after altering Kelly's DNA. I'm quite amazed at how close thi! s comes to my old speculation... There is way more to Halsey than any of us can imagine, I suppose.
And about "S-IIIs:" If they are Spartan-IIIs, the fact that when the ONI staff meeting is held and they are refered to as "special weapons programs" makes them seem a little less human than Spartan-IIs... perhapes they're machines, or mainly machines, like in the more common concept of a cyborg (Spartan-IIs may be cyborgs, but they're not so much machines as you see in a lot of movies).
Also, a lot seem to forget about the significance of the "failed" Spartans, the ones who didn't completely make it through the augmentations but still survived. They still prove to be geniuses in various aspects, since one of them provided Keyes with the insight that the Covenant were traveling towards Reach in mass, which, as the Spartan said, can make them look like one object, thus giving the UNSC at least a little time to gather a defense force (even though it still failed, in a sense).
In regards to 343 GS being the Guardian of the Luminous Key, it seems that that title belonged to an occupant of the ship that the MC commandeered whom we never quite met. Imagining Guilty Spark meeting the Covenant, though, that's an interesting thought. Would they recognize each other? (That might not be saying much. Remember that he recognizes us, too. Don't you hate it when somebody walks up to you and acts as if they know you, but you can't for the life of you remember who they are? Yeah, me too.)
With respect to your previous submission, whoa! Look at the time! ;-)
I would point out that, though quite a few folks have been pushing the "Halsey is involved" theory from early on, the events of Halo: First Strike sure do bring some added weight to their arguments. Tristan's included. :-)
dogsounds (email@example.com) writes:
Recently, Giorgio Vassallo posted some findings on his Halo=Romans theory, and said:
"4th: Back in the Roman times, september used to be the 7th month, october the 8th and so on...and halo takes place in SEPTEMBER!!!! does this tell us something?"
To which you commented "Whew...apparently. But what exactly?"
Well, story-wise, not much, but perhaps it gives another insight into the name "Pillar of Autumn" - September being the first month of the season...a supporting month, a support for the coming season? I know what I mean I just seem to be having trouble verbalising it...although Foundation may be a more apt term than Pillar...
However, this really only adds possible meaning to the name in terms of Bungie and their reasoning, not within the scope of the story. Gah.
It's all connected, all of it. Always. :-)
James Grubb (GrubstakeFarm@aol.com) writes:
After I finished reading the books, I remembered that the tactics the UNSC fleet used (excluding Captain Keyes) were reminiscent of tactics in the Revolutionary War. I reread The Fall of Reach and discovered that my observation had been pointed out, briefly.
"Admiral Stanforth had the fleet exchanging fire with the Covenant like a line of Redcoats and colonial militia in the Revolutionary War -- tactics that could best be described as bloody ... or suicidal." - p. 189
It was at that point when I decided to try and find as many similarities between the Revolutionary War and the Covenant War. My findings are as follows:
1) The UNSC fleet, approx. 48 ships, was lined up to engage the Covenant fleet, approx. 20 ships, strait on, the same as early infantry battles in the Revolutionary War.
2) The ships were positioned in a line, limiting maneuverability, which kept the fleet from being able to dodge incoming plasma. The same is true with the American and British forces when advancing towards each other, they can't dodge the rifle or cannon fire, so they walk straight into it.
Now that there are some similarities, I move on to some suggestions that may have made the battle at Sigma Octanus IV less costly for the UNSC fleet:
1) If more ships like the Cradle had been at the battle, they could have taken the bulk of the Covenant plasma hits, sparing dozens of Human battleships from certain destruction. As a suggestion for future "head-on" ship engagements, a series of "shield ships" should be constructed and used to block the first few Covenant salvos, before being completely melted away. That would even the odds significantly.
2) It was later observed in the book that as a Covenant ship exits slip-space, it shields are down, and they take a few moments to power back up. Had this been realized shortly before the Covenant fleet arrived at Sigma Octanus IV, the UNSC could have launched a volley of archer missiles (with a few dozen nukes mixed in) at the approaching ships. Many of the missiles would be destroyed by plasma turrets, but some of the nukes would make it within range to do some serious damage to the Covenant ships.
More similarities between the two wars:
1) Both wars saw that head to head combat is deadly, and ineffective when attempting to stay alive.
2) Guerrilla warfare proves to be the best means of defeating the enemy.
However, the Revolutionary War had an end, but so far, the Covenant/Human War does not. Time for some speculation....
The colonial forces were desperately seeking help from other nations, and found that France was willing to help, if the colonial army could produce a victory. When a victory was achieved, the French sailed over and trapped the British at Yorktown, where the war eventually ended.
The UNSC attained a minor victory against the Covenant fleet at Sigma Octanus IV, but also suffered a crippling defeat at Reach. However, Halo proved that the UNSC forces could defeat the Covenant on the ground. In addition to the victory at Halo, the destruction of the Unyielding Hierophant and a large portion of the Covenant fleet in First Strike proved that humanity could deal crippling blows to the Covenant without high human losses.
With these victories in place, is it possible that humanity could find an ally? And if humanity found an ally, who would it be? The Forerunner?
An alliance of some kind would be something definitely worth looking forward to in Halo 2. But, as James says, with whom?
Then again, isn't always left to the hero to ultimately save the day? Might it not be our destiny, as with certain previous encounters with fate, to go this one alone?
Patrick Welsh (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
Just something I thought you'd be interested in, I was looking at numerical values of Hebrew, Greek and Aramaic and noticed some odd occurances. They ranged from downright interesting:
-Cortana's Greek numerical equivalent is 782, so it means the word 'sabotage'. (I might have gotten that one wrong, but the rest are correct).
-The 117 in our very famous, John 117, is the Jewish value of ZIQ, meaning 'comet' or 'meteor'.
...to the downright strange:
-343 in Hebrew is 'Ark of God'. BIG blasphomey to any Hasidic or Orthodox Jew.
...to the downright spooky:
-343 in Greek is 'Membrane' or 'Origin'. This makes complete sense in my twisted mind, seeing how he is basically the brain of Halo.
Also another note, 343 BC is a big date for the Egyptians. It was the fall of the 30th, and last natural dynasty for Egypt. Artaxerxes of Persia conquered them. But Nectanebo II, the last of the rulers, lived on, despite his family and lordship crumbling. I thought that was pretty interesting, possibly a prelude of GS outliving the Forerunner?
Once again, it is to the Bungie fans that these fantastic, yet strangely seductive connections are left to discover, and then scrutinize deeply. Fascinating stuff!
Dbl0sevenboy@aol.com (Dbl0sevenboy@aol.com) writes:
Mostly all of the weapons of the covenant are plasma weapons but, what about the Needler?
I think the Needler was originaly a Forunner wepon to exterminate the Flood and the Covenant Found it and added it to there weaponry. Proof: On the 343 Quilty Spark level in one of the rooms we see two Needlers laying on the ground With refill cartridges. Thats the ONLY time we see cartriges for the Needler. My Point is that why Do we see the refills only on that level?
Good question. The needler would, by all appearances, be a terrible weapon to use against the Flood, as it's highly likely that a good portion of the pink death you fire will be coming back to you, bounding along on twitchy, flailing tentacles. That said, why is that the only place where needler ammo is available? Bungie sadism? Or something else, perhaps...
Fritz Langford (email@example.com) writes:
I think that 343 knows you are of the same species as a human, though maybe he doesn't know that we call ourselves 'human', but maybe he thinks we are part of the Covenant. To my knowledge, we have no instances of Sentinels fighting the Covenant until after 343 GS is trying to kill us (beginning of Two Betrayals). He also says that
"The Flood are already hard at work repairing your vessel. Its parasitic nature belies the Flood's intelligence." - 343 Guilty Spark
Now, it seems to me (and many, many others), that the flood are trying to repair the Truth and Reconciliation, not the PoA. But in the Maw, he knows that the PoA (or at least it's record) belongs to you
"...To have a record of all of our lost time! Human history, is it?..." -
343 Guilty Spark
So perhaps he thinks BOTH ships belong to you, or your race, at least...
Curiouser and Curiouser...
Excellent conjecture. I wonder if our little friend will turn up again. We know he's alive, after all, but it would be nice to be able to get a few, er... answers out of him on some things.
We all but handed them the keyes...
KrayG (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
I think I know how the Covenant found the coordinates to Earth. The people on Marathon Story Page†made†a relation between the 4th cortana letter to the Arecibo Observatory in Puerto Rico. Then they placed some†links associated with the Arecibo Observatory, more significantly, the†Arecibo message in both its binary and deciphered form.
The Covenant might have intercepted and deciphered†this message during the war against humanity. Right underneath the drawing of man, the third dot from the one representing Sol was raised up above all the other bodies.†The illustrated†man stood upon this dot, thus giving away the position of humanity's ultimate home. Too bad the scientists who made this weren't wary of the Cole Protocol or the hostile alien forces of the future. The coordinates of earth were transmitted before the Cole Protocol. This protocol only†delayed the immient invasion of Earth by the Covenant.†It was only a matter of time before the enemy found the single, unprotected, unencrypted, stray†transmission to ever disclose the location of earth. All because of one mistake from the past, we are at the mercy of the Covenant.
Gah! I always knew science would get us into trouble ;)
Reclaimer as the rightful heir?
Ul7imate and Damatthieu@juno.com write:
343GS also said the step of reunification is reserved for the Reclaimer. Doesn't this seem to be alot like ancient prophecies? Maybe this "Reclaimer" is the rightful successor to the throne of the universe. The Reclaimer will return, perform the reunification, purge the universe of all evils, and then claim his throne.
Perhaps this is the next stage of something similar to King Arthur's sword in the stone. Whoever removed the Index was granted Lordship over the entire universe, and only the rightful successor to the throne would be able to return the Index to its place, thus starting the revival of a dead kingdom.
The Forerunner may not be a long-dead race, they may be waiting for the reawakening of their kingdom. Not only would the Halos purge all evils from the kingdom, but it would be a sign that the Reclaimer has come.
The Bungie backstory remindes me of legends in which a great leader came back to protect his people? King Arthur waits for a time when his people need him again; the Golem of legend will return to life to protect the innocent; the "reclaimer" of the Forerunner... This also means that there is probably a prophecy attached to the Halo story. What if the forerunners also had a special breed of warrior, one destined to live specifically for combat, that would return one day when needed?
"Whoever made such a place must now live in chains; there is no other explanation for their absence"...
The Widow? The Queen? The Operator/Melissa? Evacuation of Troy? James James? SPARTAN 1.0's? Dana (Gheritt?) White? ARG's? Axon hot? ilovebees.com?
-NetninjaBeeWiki and Netninja Bee Log: catalogued progress
-Fireflies: Another excellent depository
-HBO's word on bees...
-Coverage and background by Wired Magazine
-The story so far...
UPDATE: Webshift's chronologically-ordered sound clips.
Hold onto your hats...
eMCee (email@example.com) writes:
I noticed that someone compared 117's title as Reclaimer to King Arthur. I read up on Legends of Charlemagne and came across an interesting character by the name of Ogier the Dane. Ogier was seven feet tall and was given the sword Cortana upon rescuing Charlemagne in battle. (Seven feet tall with Cortana in tow? hmmm....) Long story short, Ogier is kidnapped by a jealous Fairy by the name of Morgana and is kept on an island with King Arthur where they await their opportunity to reclaim the King's throne.
I'm a sucker for Marathon connections, so I thought I would add this terminal passage too.
"Well, there was this knife, more aptly described as a broadsword, and I see, well, I was swinging down the street on my way to a movie and this guy, yeah. He was about six foot eight and huge. He was holding this knife, only to me, I would describe it as a broadsword, something from the Knights of the Round." -where are monsters in dreams
If I remember correctlly, Cortana is a word for "short blade," and a knife is definitely a short blade. There are a lot of Terminals that scream Cortana at me, but that's another submission entirely (and a long one at that)
solidus90 (firstname.lastname@example.org) and Mygoditsraining (email@example.com) write:
While watching Demolition Man a few days ago, I noticed a few similarities between it and Halo.
1. Sylvester Stallone's character in the movie is "John Spartan"
2. He was frozen cryogenically.
3. They released him because the police sucked at trying to stop Simon (kinda like the Marines trying to stop the Covenant)
Biblical references aside, perhaps someone at Bungie just really liked the movie, "Demolition Man"...
"John Spartan, you are fined one credit for a violation of the verbal morality statute"
Compare this to the gold elite. Surprisingly its called a "zealot".
Starcraft backstory: (paraphrase)
There was an ancient race of Xelagna (forerunner?) who tried to create the ultimate race. They first created the protoss who had psi powers and such. The Xelagna finnaly showed themselves to the protoss and the protoss had a civil war. The Xelagna left their failed creations to their selves.
The Xelagna Then decided to start on a new creation. They created the Zerg (Flood?) on a barren desert world (hmm, did blizzard read the vang?). The Zerg were parasitic worms who gathered DNA of other species and created other mutations. The Zerg soon made command untis which were kinda like the Keyes blob. They communicated with psi powers. The Zerg soon took over their planet as the dominate species. The Zerg soon figured out how to launch into space (I forget how) and destoryed their creators. Soon after the Zerg destoryed the Xelagna they found a whale like space fairing creatures (they were quite large) and took their DNA and created living starships.
This is about as far as the parallels go. But in one of the starcraft books called "Shadows of the Xelagna" a Protoss scientist (Halsey?) finds a crystal (rembember FS?) on a terran backwater planet. Then chaos ensues and all 3 races start fighting to get this crystal. They finnaly get it out of the underground installation. The terrans launch a nuke at the battleground and the crystall feeds off the energy. A massive living energy being flys out of it and off into space. (hmm the being from PID and Marathon?)
Also in "The Vang" the battle master could create whatever living being it needed for the task at hand.(Much like the Zerg.) I hope that doesn't apply in Halo 2.
Oh, don't worry, it will :)
Whew. As Chris Butcher says, "the forgotten peril that ended a galaxy-spanning empire is a pretty fundamental tenet of good sci-fi (yeah, yeah, and bad sci-fi too)." Even so, quite the parallels.
Back to the Future
Bryan Gersbeck (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
In First Strike when the Ascendant Justice goes into the slipspace bubble they go back in time; to September 12 to be precise. Meanwhile, on September 19 the Pillar Of Autumn reaches Halo. And ~4 days later it explodes. So does that mean that Halo was never destroyed, or are there two Master Chiefs due to the fact that there's one MC on Halo and another one on the flagship? If you get confused think of it like the Back to the Future movies. How he sees himself in the past. I'm confused!
Never fear; you may not be the only one. The non-linearity of the Halo story line is now undeniable. However, whether this time fluctuation was merely a device to get the Chief back to Reach in time to be involved, or if Bungie intends to continue to exploit it, is unknown. It is hard to say, considering that the crystal seemed to have wanted to be found by the Chief; John's place as the "Jjaro boxer equipped Eternal Hero" is once again confirmed, and we are left wondering: what other purposes do the Forerunner (or their relics) possess?
You know, maybe you're right. Keyes would still be "alive" technically. And the first Halo Teaser did feature the voice of Keyes, only this time as an Admiral. Hmmm... if he was still alive, that doesn't sound like a bad promotion to me ;)
It is an old riddle by now; a riddle not fully exhausted however: "Who or what would wear a Halo?" This clue, given by Eric "now-departed-from-the-Halo-
world" Trautmann during an HSP interview, had to due with little eggs or secrets in the books. Not anything that would reveal tru7h necessarily, but that would shed new light on key elements of the novels. Apparently there are many of these throughout, but we work with what we have...
It is not the small holographic Halo on the headdress of the Prophets. Neither is it the giant ring circling the Unyielding Hierophant. Prophets, the Dead, Saints, John the Baptist... cold. Angels? Well, as you might recall from back in April, progress was made in the area of fallen Angels, the apparent "answer" to the clue. It is a long post, but good speculation is there for those who read.
Of this ilk, and far more recently, Frankie G (email@example.com) and A. N.-W. write:
i went searching... and this is what i found..... I remebered one fallen Angel (you can thank the movie: Dogma LOL).... our old Fallen Angel : Azeral!!
* Azeral was the one who taught men to make weapons ( i think.. weapons like HALO-04!!!)
* the word "watchers" ( i think.. forerunners, moniter?)
* the mentioning of the flood that whiped out all life ( i think.... well you know what the word "Flood" means to us!)
It may be unrelated, but Ackerson's watchdog, Araqiel - it's name means "one who has dominion over the earth".
There is a slough of lore on this subject, most inevitably linking Azazel (Azreal) and, more importantly, our friend Araquiel, as "Watchers'", the Gregori, etc.
This book spent some time conspicuously flagged on Trautmann's blog. How certain entries may relate to the future of characters in the Halo universe remains to be seen...
The Library and Azrael's little black book
Kristof K. (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
While doing some reading, I noticed a line about Azrael and the other three archangels of Islam going to the corners of the universe to gather 7 handfuls of dust for the creation of Earth and man. Of course, the number seven leaped out at me and I found the number of archangels (four) interesting. With some further investigation I found this page. 4 archangels. 4 Halos.
"Azrael reaches from one end of the world to the other (Jellinek, "B. H." v. 49), and has 70,000 feet and 4,000 wings. His whole body is covered with eyes and with tongues as numerous as the living creatures on earth. When any of these latter die, the corresponding eye bulges forth. At the end of the world all these eyes excepting eight are plucked out by God--those of Israfil (Sarafel), Michael, Gabriel, Azrael, and the four "Hayyot" of the Heavenly Chariot alone remaining. The times of the death of persons is made known to the angel of death through the roll-book in his possession showing a white stripe around the name of the person doomed. Forty days before death, however, a leaf falls from the tree of life, under the throne of God, into the lap of Azrael, who is seated in the seventh heaven, thus announcing the death." -from wikipedia.org
The reported size of Azrael seems consistent with the idea of the Halo ringworld, being able to span an entire planet (albeit a small one).
But the bulging eye representing living creatures at death made me think of the Library. According to the Halo.Bungie.Net forums, the Library is:
1: A repository of information
2. A collection of cloned DNA sequences whose location and identity can be established by mapping the genome of a particular organism."
That is, one 'book' in the Library represents the genetic make-up of an entire species, strikingly similar to Azrael's eyes.
Azrael was also generally depicted as constantly writing names in a book and erasing what he wrote, the writing representing birth and erasing representing death. The Library seems like it could serve that function but on a universal scale, studying the rise of new species and the extinction of older ones.
Constantly writing and erasing on a universal scale? Sounds like a bad case of Carpal Tunnel to me :P
Some great links.
Metatron (Eagleemail@example.com) has posted an interesting idea regarding a possible distinction between "Halo" and "HALO" based on the in-game multiplayer descriptions. Semantic gymnastics? Redundant hairsplitting? Confused? So were we. Read on to get the gist.
(And as far as the oft alluded to "taking the fight to the Covenant", perhaps KiGlow is right... Perhaps it is the Unyielding Hierophant... Perhaps that and a Covenant homeworld would be too much for one game. A keen induction.)
GryphonOsiris (firstname.lastname@example.org) proposes an interesting idea involving the Snow Warthog, meteorites, and the rocks of Sigma Octanus. Check it out!
The Shape of What's to Come
On the forum, KigGlow has posted an interesting read concerning our ability to predict Halo 2's story, in spite of the apparent absence of hard facts:
Will the game begin where it left off? Or will it start out on Earth? Despite claims from various gaming news sites, I would say the beginning of Halo 2 lies just after the final scene in Halo. There is plenty of evidence suggesting this theory. Here is a thread I posted on the Bungie.net forums a while ago with a link to an interview with Peter Parsons (not viewable on a Mac :( ) in which he says the following:
"The current game picks up right around the same time [in reference to First Strike]. So effectively, a lot happens with the destruction of the Halo and Chief coming back to Earth. Essentially it picks up right after where Halo left off with First Strike filling in some of the gaps." - Peter Parsons, E3 2004
It can be derived from this interview that Halo 2 will be composed partly of the storyline from First Strike. Granted, not every single detail from the book will be in the game (ie Halo didnt contain everything from The Flood). Rather, Halo 2 will more than likely take us through the major plot points from the book and continue on from there.
If you still want more evidence, check out what Joe Staten had to say in the Making of Halo 2 video:
"...take the player from the ruins of Halo to these ancient Forerunner facilities in the atmospheres of gas giants. Its sort of a galactic romp from one place to the next, and I think that in and of itself is gonna keep the player on the edge of his seat wondering 'Where am I gonna be' and 'What do I get to do when I get there?'" - Joseph Staten
Time-loops, time travel, teleportation, anomalous slipspace... No matter how you think the game will progress, it is a fine read. Check it out in its entirety.
Also: "Picks up where Halo left off", eh? KiGlow finds more evidence for a substantial First Strike/Halo 2 crossover... (Update: Which, we now know, is sadly not the case :( -Finn)
Funkmon (email@example.com) writes:
The forerunners maybe had several different races included in them, much like the Covenant.
Which could explain why they disappeared. Perhaps the black sheep of the Forerunners could have allied themselves with the Covenant slaves, then drove off the Forerunners. Put them in hiding. Of course, the Covenant would then destroy the former allies, who had given them forerunner technology. Eventually, all that would be left are the Covenant. And the forerunners. After hundreds of thousands of years, the technology of the forerunners got lost, and they remerged as the Human Race.
This would explain the Holy War of the Covenant against humankind. The Prophets identified us as past forerunners, and then, to prevent being enslaved once again, told lies to the rest of the Covenant that we were the scourge of the universe, rather than telling them that we were the forerunners they have been studying for so long.
Interesting. A lot has been mentioned about potential connections to the Starhammer series of books by Christopher Rowley, but this brings to mind another book of his, Golden Sunlands. One aspect of the story it tells is of a once-great civilization, spread out over vast distances, and the varying degrees of de-evolution that occur to different groups of the same original race(s). Now, just tossing an idea out there for general perusal, we know that the Prophets originated on a world which was near enough to a Forerunner artifact for it to heavily influence their development. Imagine if there was more to it than that. Imagine the possibilities if one or more races within the Covenant heirarchy had a history far longer than even they remember. ;-)
We often get very elaborate, comprehensive speculative papers here at the HSP, and, while we appreciate more the thoughtful tidbit, meticulously analyzed and distilled for clarity, some of the larger dissertations can be quite thought-provoking. Prepare yourselves, this is one of the big ones. ;-)
Nerrolken (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
I started writing this a while ago, but I just had a revival of Halo-interest, so I finished it up and thought I'd fire it off. Its a compilation of many theories that have been raised, along with some personal research and extrapolation. It started out as an analysis of the Humans-are-the-Forerunner theory, but has expanded into a complete Theory of Everything for the Halo Universe, explaining all of the intricacies of the Human-Covenant-Forerunner relationship and the evolving political climate across eons.
The Forerunner Connection
An In-Depth Analysis of the Relationship Between Humanity, the Covenant, and the Ancient Forerunner
The Humans are the race that constructed the Halo, referred to by Cortana as the Forerunner.
1. 343-GS calls the Master Chief The Reclaimer. Presumably, he is either reclaiming the Index or the entire Halo. To reclaim means to restore or return a possession. This would seem to indicate that either the Index or the Halo was previously in the Master Chiefs possession, in which case it is easy to understand that the Master Chief represents Humanity in reclaiming the item in question. (NOTE: 343-GS could simply mean that the Master Chief is reclaiming the Index, which was 343-GSs possession, for him.)
2. 343-GS says many things that indicate that he expects the Master Chief to know certain protocols. Many of these are listed below:
A. In Two Betrayals, When the Master Chief asks 343-GS about the Halos true purpose, he describes it in a tone which indicates he is trying to remind the Master Chief of something, and ends his speech with, But you already knew that. I mean, how couldnt you?
B. In the Library, 343-GS remarks on how [the Master Chief] brought such ineffective weapons to combat the Flood, despite the containment protocols. This not only indicates that 343-GS expects the Master Chief to know the protocols, but also that he expects him to have superior weapons in the first place, and that he expects the Master Chief to be aware that the Flood exist so that he might use such weapons, all of which point to the Master Chief being involved in previous actions involving the Halo.
C. 343-GS suggests in the Library that the Master Chief upgrade to at least a Class Twelve combat skin. [His] current model only scans as a Class Two, which is unsuitable for this kind of work. This is an obvious acknowledgment that 343-GS expects the Master Chief to be of the race that created the Halo, as the Master Chief would have to be aware of the rating system of armor, able to upgrade his armor to another Forerunner model, and know that he made a mistake in his choice of armor, to understand 343-GSs remark.
D. 343-GS also refers to how the Master Chiefs air-tight suit will help him when the Flood starts to change the atmosphere. You are a good planner, he says, indicating once again that the Master Chief would know the conditions on the Halo before coming and the action that the Flood would take if released.
E. At the beginning of Two Betrayals, 343-GS says that they, being him and the Master Chief, followed outbreak containment procedure to the letter. Once again, 343-GS makes reference to the Master Chiefs expected knowledge of protocol.
F. 343-GSs beliefs do not entirely seem to be wrong, as the Master Chief and the other SPARTANs do seem to have some sort of innate understanding of the workings of Forerunner technology. Obviously, they would not have such understanding if they were not somehow connected to the Forerunner.
3. In Two Betrayals, 343-GS says to the Master Chief, Last time, you asked me, if it was my choice, would I do it? Having considerable time to ponder your query, my answer has not changed. There is no choice. We must activate the ring. This has several interesting points.
A. First, the fact that 343-GS mentions a question put to him by the Master Chief. However, the Master Chief barely ever speaks, and never asks ethical questions. It is completely out of his character, not to mention it would require prior knowledge of what doing it amounted to. However, that question is a very natural one for the creator of such a terrible weapon to ask, if he were having a moral crisis. It would also be an important question to ask 343-GS: if he were going to be left in charge of the Halo, it would be vitally necessary to know if he would do his duty during a crisis.
I. This is a hugely important line because it is one of the only times 343-GS could not possibly be talking about the greater human race. In most of 343-GSs lines, the Master Chief is not explicitly mentioned. The Reclaimer could easily be The Reclaiming Race, and you could be singular or plural. However, this is a specific description of a specific conversation, and the fact that 343-GS attributes it to the Master Chief personally is very interesting.
B. Next, 343-GS says he has had considerable time to think about his answer. Following 343-GS's maddening habit of incredible understatement, along with his inherently massive lifespan, this could mean eons.
C. Third, both 343-GS's constant use of the word we and the fact that he is so cordial to the Master Chief lead one to think he believes himself and the Master Chief to be inherently on the same side. This inherent alliance could only come from a previous meeting, one in which we know the Master Chief has never participated. This is further proved by the immediate way 343-GS whisks the Master Chief off when they first meet, without pausing to ask if the Master Chief will help him. 343-GS obviously recognized him.
D. Lastly, in the same scene as this line, 343-GS asks the Master Chief why [he would] hesitate to do what [he has] already done? This is an explosive line, because the Master Chief has done no such thing! We know, of course, that neither the Master Chief nor Humanity in general has had anything to do with the Halos or the Flood. This could only mean that something happened to the Humans in the interim time between the firing of the Halos and the meeting between 343-GS and the Master Chief that would erase any Human record of such an action. Needless to say, it would require a cataclysmic event to erase the memory of the firing of a Halo.
4. At the beginning of Two Betrayals, 343-GS seems to view the Master Chief as a superior to himself. While 343-GS has no lack of self-confidence, he says that protocol does not allow units with [his] classification to perform a task as important as the re-unification of the Index with the Core. This in itself shows that the Master Chief is higher up on the food chain than 343-GS, but 343-GSs tone, one of respect bordering on awe, shows that not only is the position of Reclaimer higher than that of 343-GS, it is high compared to anything.
5. In The Maw, 343-GS downloads files from Cortanas memory. As he does it, he says, You can't imagine how exciting this is! To have a record of all our lost time! Human history, is it? Fascinating. The fact that 343-GS refers to it as our lost time indicates that he and the Master Chief, (which again can easily mean all of humanity), were in communication at one point, and were sharing information.
6. 343-GS is presumably an archeological/anthropological AI, which would explain both his insatiable thirst for knowledge and the fact that he was left in charge of a research station. It would seem vital for an anthropological AI to have an open mind, to accept other cultures so that he doesnt come at them with a bias that could alter his studies. However, he is shockingly biased as to the ways of the Master Chief and the Humans. He constantly remarks on what they do wrong: Ridiculous! That you would imbue a warship's AI with such a wealth of knowledge. Werent you worried that it might be captured? Or destroyed? This bias, aside from inexcusably horrible programming, could only come from a pre-conceived notion of how the Humans should be acting, which could only have come from previous contact.
A. Another interesting implication of this quote is that 343-GS doesnt believe in the destruction of knowledge, which is understandable for such a single-minded scientist. However, it also seems to indicate that he believes that this system, Cortana, is the only place where this information is stored.
I. We know that Fleet Command considers capture or destruction of a shipboard AI completely unacceptable, (Captain Keyes, The Pillar of Autumn), but, as is said in HALO: The Fall of Reach, this is simply because of the rapidly shrinking number of AIs in the Fleet, not because of the knowledge contained in them. It is true that the information that the shipboard AIs contain could lead the Covenant to Earth, but this would only explain the fear of capture, not destruction. And in any case, 343-GS does not know much, if anything, about the Human/Covenant war, and therefore that could not be a factor in his thinking.
B. It should also be noted that 343-GS never refers to the Covenant with the same bias and prejudice. Whenever he is talking about the Covenant, 343-GS always refers to them passively as the other species and doesnt seem concerned about their attempts to access restricted areas. This would indicate that he has had no contact with the Covenant before, and it supports the theory that he has pre-conceived notions about the Humans.
I. It is also interesting that in the Library, 343-GS assumes that the Covenant are the ones who released the Flood. He presents no evidence for this, and even he refers to it as conjecture. This assumption could be deadly in a crisis situation, and the only justification for such an assumption is a previous knowledge of the Humans, who, as the creators of the Halo, would know better than to release the Flood.
7. In the Library, 343-GS says, The installation was specifically built to study and contain the Flood: their survival as a race was dependant on it. I am grateful to see that some of them survived to reproduce. Now, one would assume that he meant that the Flood's survival as a race was dependant on it. But that doesnt make sense. Obviously, the Flood were doing just fine without being locked up, and it would be unnecessary to state that their survival depended on the mercy of the Forerunner in not destroying them completely. If 343-GS is saying that the Floods survival was dependant on the Forerunners mercy, it would make it sound like a condition in a treaty, and the Flood are incapable of negotiation. Therefore, it must have been the Forerunner's survival which was dependant on the containment of the Flood. This would then mean that 343-GS was glad to see that the Forerunner had survived to reproduce, meaning that the Master Chief was one of those Forerunner. Either way, though, it was a dire situation before it was controlled.
8. Another, more subjective piece of evidence is the nature of the Halo itself. Its environment is identical to that on Earth, in aspects of atmosphere, gravity, and flora. And the exterior of the Halo resembles the Human design of a very basic, metallic, unadorned construction, along with the steely silver color of their metal, as opposed to the purple of the Covenant. Even the door height and hall width conform to Human standards. The only thing on the Halo that doesnt look like it could come from Human design is the swamp plants, some of which look more like they came from the Flood's original environment than Earth. And those, it has been speculated, are simply Earth-plants that have been taken by the Flood themselves.
This is a wealth of information, if analyzed carefully and specifically. We will first reduce the above evidence into a set of facts, then establish a set of assumptions from other areas of the HALO universe, and then develop the most probable scenario from this information.
1. 343-GS thinks he was once in contact with the Humans.
2. 343-GS thinks the Humans once controlled the Halo.
3. 343-GS thinks the Forerunner constructed and controlled the Halo.
4. 343-GS thinks that the Forerunner and the Flood were once at odds, but the Forerunner were victorious and contained the Flood in the Halo(s).
5. After the containment of the Flood, 343-GS describes the establishment of a weapon and protocol for the containment of the Flood.
6. 343-GS expects the Humans both to know the protocols for containing the Flood and to want to go along with them.
7. 343-GS thinks that the Halo was once fired, and he thinks it was fired by the Master Chief.
1. The Covenant declared war on the Humans with no known provocation, but they seem to have been planning it for some time seeing as how prepared and quick to attack they were.
2. The Covenant are mainly an incorporative race, fiercely dogmatic but open to convert races.
3. The Covenant made no attempt whatsoever to incorporate Humanity into its system.
4. The Covenant revere the Forerunner as higher beings than themselves.
5. The Covenant have had contact with several Forerunner artifacts, and were able to recognize a Halo when they saw one.
6. The Covenant knew of a weapon on the Halo, but they did not know the specific nature of such a weapon.
7. The Humans are not aware of any contact between them and the Covenant prior to the beginning of the current war.
8. The Humans are not aware of any contact between them and the Forerunner prior to the actions of the SPARTANS and the discovery of the Forerunner artifacts outlined in the HALO game and books.
An ancient race, known only as the Forerunner, expands throughout the universe. During their expansion, they either create or find the Flood, it is irrelevant which. However, the Flood begin to attack the Forerunner and the Forerunner suddenly find themselves in a dire struggle. By the end of this First Outbreak, the Forerunner are victorious, and succeed in containing the Flood in a number of Halos. However, to prevent the Flood from ever again escaping out to where they could do any more damage, the Forerunner build the Halos with a weapon that is capable of destroying the Flood, along with any life form capable of sustaining them. To carry out this apocalyptic mission, the Forerunner gave the AIs that were in charge of the Halos the ability to fire them, but not without the presence of a living Forerunner to complete the firing sequence.
This system worked for a time, and life presumably went on as usual. But then, on one of the Halos, a Second Outbreak occurred. Following the containment procedures, the relevant Halo was fired. However, the firing of this Halo almost completely destroyed the Forerunner race. Most, if not all, of the Forerunner were killed off by the blast from the Halo, except for a few ragged survivors. These survivors were either on Earth to begin with and were just able to survive the blast, or were able to flee to Earth before they crashed. They went about rebuilding civilization, but they were so few and so crippled that they descended into barbarism, and thus was Human History born.
This is where things get hard to determine. It would seem that the Covenant, or at least the Prophets, were in contact with the Forerunner at the time of the Second Outbreak. They would probably have been an inferior race or a protectorate-style species. They were nearby to the Forerunner territory, and were close enough to know the Forerunner were very advanced but not close enough to take advantage of this technology. This way, when the Forerunner fired the Halos, the Prophets were also greatly damaged by the blast. However, because the Halos were in Forerunner territory, the blast hurt them more, and the Prophets were able to hold their civilization together in a more serious sense. They became hateful toward the Forerunner for nearly destroying their civilization, but kept them in near-reverence because of their vastly superior technology. Over the eons, this strange love-hate feeling for the Forerunner developed into a legend of their God-like status, but God-like in the Greek sense: not necessarily loving and gentle, but undoubtedly powerful. This way, the Prophets set about studying Forerunner technology, trying to learn about them and imitate their technology. They adopted their language, their symbolism, and their technology. As the Prophets utilized this technology to conquer race after race, they incorporated them into their collective in a continual attempt to raise themselves up to their perception of the Forerunners greatness.
Back on Earth, the Forerunner have rebuilt and grown into what we now know as Humanity. They begin to expand into the universe, growing in peace and ignorance. Then, they come under the scrutiny of the Covenant. The Prophets, realizing that the Forerunner have not been destroyed and assuming that they have returned to reclaim their domain, choose to attack and drive the Forerunner out, keeping the Forerunner secrets for themselves. Thus, they initiate a holy war against them and make absolutely no attempt to incorporate them into their collective. The Humans, unaware of their past connection to the Forerunner and the Prophets, try desperately to resist the invasion, eventually getting pushed back to Reach and making the jump to the Halo.
Once the Humans find the Halo, the Covenant go into high alert. Here are the returning descendants of the race that the Covenant have been trying to supplant for eons, and they have returned to the helm of the weapon that almost wiped out the Prophets Empire before it began! Thus, they go to desperate lengths to keep the Humans from finding out how to use the Halo, and they make a race to try to control key points before the Humans can. Thus, they make moves for the Silent Cartographer and the Control Room. However, the Covenant think that the main weapon of Halo is the only danger, and are unaware of exactly why the weapon was fired during the Second Outbreak. Thus, they unwittingly release the Flood. In doing so, they kick on all of the defense systems that have lain dormant since the Second Outbreak.
Realizing that the Flood has been released again, 343-Guilty Spark, the AI in charge of the Halo in question, begins the containment procedures. However, he finds that his former masters, the Forerunner, have arrived just in time to aid in the crisis. From his point of view, a hostile coalition of aliens have landed on the Halo and released the Flood, and the Forerunner have arrived to contain the Flood and repel those who released it. Selecting the obvious leader of what he assumes to be a containment team, 343-GS whisks the Master Chief off to complete the containment protocol and fire the Halo, thus succeed in ending the Third Outbreak. Master Chief, not knowing what he is doing, goes along with it, not knowing that it could completely destroy the rest of the Human race. When he learns what he is doing from Cortana, he of course stops and tries to find another way.
Meanwhile, the Covenant have realized that they are in way over their heads. They try to attempt a total retreat, leaving the Humans to deal with the mess. However, the Flood have gotten too far by then, and the Covenant can do nothing but be destroyed in the eventual destruction of Halo when the Master Chief detonates the Pillar of Autumns fusion core.
So where do we go from here? The Covenant continue their campaign to destroy the Forerunner just as the Forerunner almost destroyed them, Humanity continues to scramble to survive, and the Master Chief must use his knowledge of the Forerunner to lead Humanity to recover its history and rise to the glory of the fallen Forerunner before it is too late . . .
Well, there you go. A lot to chew on — some plausible, some not so plausible. Always good to get the little grey cells fired up, though.
Ineluctable modality of the visible:
Well, this is one for the record books. Bill and George Hardigg, a father-and-son team of literary Halo fanatics, have conspired to bring us something I thought I'd never see: a comparison between the events of Halo, the game, and the novel Ulysses by James Joyce.
Having spent a couple of years with the book myself, I can say that what they've come up with is absolutely worth reading. Remember, finding connections like this is an art, and is always worth the effort. Definitely one of the cooler things to come through the beleaguered inbox. ;-)
As noted on HBO's front page, IceWeasel managed to discover a tantalizing nugget during the "Whisper in the Storm" cutscene.
Amidst all the talk of poetry and prayers, backwards audio, and interjections by Marty O'Donnell, this much has surfaced:
I have walked among men and angels for three thousand years. Time has no end... no beginning... no purpose.
I wander the earth, seeking forgiveness for my horrible crimes against God and man.
I live to see death, destruction, over the light, but the light cannot be extinguished.
I live in a prison of my own demise.
I am lost in time...
Hmmm. Gravemind's lament? Or just something neat? :)
With a thoroughness rarely seen (yet profoundly refreshing), replay has written up a fantastic analysis of the proximity between Earth and Delta Halo. Taking into account references from the books, the games, and various quotes by Bungie employees, he weaves a compelling argument. Check out this thread at HBO, and toss in your two cents.
(And be sure to check some of the past speculation regarding the proximity of Earth and Alpha Halo 04).
Count Zero'd like to give us all a hand in figuring out who does what, when - and he came up with this. If you couldn't be bothered reading this and this, then this is the thread to check out.
Four different ways of explaining the Halo 2 timeline. Don't say we're not good to you.
Vorpal Sword wonders in this thread what happens to any non-Reclaimer who touches the Index. Genetic Markers are looking more and more likely
Wikipedia, the monument to all our sins
Willy (email@example.com) writes:
I'm pretty sure this hasn't been mentioned before, but the phrase Truth and Reconciliation wasn't created by Bungie. The Truth and Reconciliation Commission was a court of sorts set up in South Africa for people affected by the violence there during the Apartheid. I'm not sure what to draw from this, except that
1. Bungie has a thing for South Africa, and
2. We haven't quite figured out Halo 1 yet.
Here's what Wikipedia has to say about it.
Technically, I think delta means 'the change in', but I'm willing to let it slip.
Sean Boyle (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
I was sitting here reading about Halo 2 when this hit me. I see everyone referring to Installation 05 as the Delta Halo. I thought "Ok yeah, thats the name of the first level you are on that Halo." But then remembered Delta usually means change. Change. More than what you can say about the storyline of Halo. The whole time you are on Halo 05 in the game, there is a lot of change in the ranks of the Covenant, the Flood begin to spread like wildfire over the whole ring (and then to High Charity soon after) I'm just curious as to what other changes this 'Delta' could be hinting at? Besides the obvious ones of course.
Or it could be a diverging river. That's what speculation's all about!
Stupid autopilot . . . downfall of the human race . . . effing computers . . .
Jeff May (email@example.com) writes:
I've been pondering this for quite some time. Why was
the Prophet of Truth going to earth if he thought the
Halos were going to be activated? There would be no
reason for this attack. As I was thinking of this, I
realized something. If Earth truly is the Ark, then
it is quite possibly a place where the Halos would not
kill you. Maybe it has some sort of protective
property? Maybe the Prophet knew the Arbiter was
going to stop Tartarus? But this wouldnt hold because
he thought the Arbiter was dead. So it is quite
possible that the Prophet(s) knew what the Great
Journey really was, and they were attempting to escape
it. This is supported by the fact that the Prophets seemed to screw people over a lot. It is also quite
possible he didn't mean to go to Earth. Since he was
aboard the Forerunner ship, he could have had the
Fleet following him for protection. This means the
ship might have automatically gone to the Ark for some
reason, and the rest of the fleet would have gone too.
Sep7imus and slith put their heads together in pointing out the relationship between an elaborate picture used as a wall texture on Quarantine Zone (details of which can be found here) and the upcoming multiplayer map Containment.
With this, the ol' Flood Juggernaut, and the Battle Creek images recently discovered in Beaver Creek textures, one has to wonder what other little gems are still tucked away, seemingly out of reach.
He he. Totally off-topic, but the 117 mention is too much. Thanks rampancy.net :)
The Devil's in the Subtitles...
LostRock (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
When I bought Halo 2, I decided to turn on the subtitles, because I hated having to focus to listen every time something unintelligible was said by a character.
The other day, playing through The Arbiter, I scanned my eyes across the dialogue inside the Covenant Seraph. Then I noticed there was one scene where the dialogue appeared to be longer than what was actually said. I restarted the level, and paying closer attention to the subtitles, I picked up the following from the Covie SpecOps chant (italic indicates unheard dialogue):
"Grind them into dust, scrape them as excrement from our boots!"
Small and not so important, but cool.
Definitely neat. Also, at the beginning of "Whisper in the Storm" the exchange between the two Heretic Elites, if you stay cloaked and out of sight, is rather interesting ("Any word on our missing brothers?", etc.; perhaps the Heretics who accidentally released the Flood?). I wonder if there are any other such insightful treasures.
"Do not forget the legacy of the good Dr. Heisenberg."
Hieros (email@example.com) writes:
The last question that you asked Joe, he answered with something about Dr. Heisenberg. You may already know this, but Heisenberg came up with the Uncertainty principle [among other things] which states, "You cannot know both the velocity and location of an electron. It is possible to know the velocity and not the location, or to know the location and not the velocity".
In other words, don't look too close 'cuz things get all fuzzy-like? ;)
Asides from being a Library lovin' freak, Cody comes up with some more 'evidence' for the Ark/Earth theory.
Cody Miller (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
In the Halo 2 Special Edition manual, human buildings are described as primitive. However, with regards to them the Covenant are told "Our mission is such that we cannot simply level these structures".
Why are the buildings on Earth so important? They had no problem destroying them on Reach. Are the Covenant looking for something on Earth? An artifact perhaps? The controls to the Ark? There must be something important to them on Earth.
Cody also mentions that the Covenant manage to destroy an Earth building in the E3 demo, and I'm fairly sure Mombassa comes out of the skirmish with a little damage in the game. However, I think we can safely ignore those examples as 'artistic license'.
What is interesting is that the Forerunners tried to preserve old Aztec style buildings on Delta Halo . . .
You didn't see this one coming.
Nami Seyfollahi (email@example.com) writes:
Halo in itself is a story with very distinct similarities to the ever so popular book, "Ring World," and, "The Ring World Engineers" written by Author Larry Niven. In the Bungie story, The Forerunner are thought to be the singular creators of these Installations who had been destroyed many a centuries ago for the sole purpose of containing the Flood "Infection Host."
Now to reflect back on the novel, Ring World also creates a similar predicament where an infection was introduced into the fragile environment of the Ring and had resulted in chaos on a tremendous scale. I would like to think that the game is designed in very much the same way. That essentially the Flood had been a plague beset upon the advanced and unsuspecting Halo inhabitants. Just as in the novel, seeing that the pioneers of the ring could no longer fight off the alien virus began a slow "devoluting" process that ultimately resulted in their demise. Nonetheless, a very few survived in Niven's tale, who through decades of corruption under the virus had very little intelligence or memory of the early bliss of Ring World.
This is where Halo becomes a very separate story from its written counterpart.
I do not believe that the Covenant forgot the existence of the Flood so much as they were unaware of it. I do agree however that Covenant and man are indeed very closely related to the Forerunner(s) origins, even though their knowledge of Halo's inner-working is minute. Moreover, the Covenant architecture differs immensely from what is found in the world of Halo. From the glossy and luminescent finish of the covenant ships to the cobble stone and Aztec reminiscence of the Forerunner creations, the two are certainly of opposite ends of the spectrum.
Nevertheless, the Covenant armada constantly refers to Halo as a symbolic and religious guide to salvation. They go to unimaginable feats to ensure the activation of Halo in order to free themselves just as their Gods ( the Forerunner ) had done. I must say, that this is a very feeble ideology for a seemingly advanced life-form. Yet in Halo 2, Mercy clearly states during a cut-scene that: "to finish what we started...and this time none of you will be left behind."
It almost seems like the Prophet is referring to a secondary battle. Does this mean that the earlier battle that led to the destruction of all sentient life on a galactic scale was ultimately caused by the undying hatred between Humanity and Covenant? and to say that: "...and this time none of you will be left behind." in my understanding, means that the earlier attempt of destroying Humanity had indeed failed. I should also add the fact that in Halo: Combat Evolved, during the introductory scene with 343 Guilty Spark, the monitor openly states that it is certainly glad to see humanity survived. Although it does not go on to say what it is that we survived I can only assume that it is referring to the first Halo Activation which coincidentally, the Flood and Covenant also survived.
In the end however, I do not believe that all seven Halo Installations of Halo had been created for the sole purpose of containing the Flood. In fact, I whole-heartedly believe that the Flood, the Monitors etc. were at one point ( somehow ) created by the Prophets in order to mask the TRUE purpose of their quest, which is the destruction of Humanity, rather than salvation for all. But certainly, no figure in the Covenant entourage would stand to defend this purpose, so the Prophets have thought up this entire scheme and propaganda to mask their motives.
So the Covenant are the Forerunner, except with a bit of amnesia. Told you, you didn't see it coming.
Lots of rampant speculation this time round, starting with this theory posted on the forum. Perfectly reasonable, if you ask me. The Flood on Earth. Could that be the one thing the Forerunners truly hoped would never happen?
Earths_Reclaimer (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
LoneRanger 2.5 noticed a curiousity from Halo: The Flood
"This is Echo 136," the pilot said into his mike, "We are green, clean, and extremely clean. Over."
"Roger that," Wellsley replied emotionlessly. "Please return to way point two-five for another load of troopers. And, if you're going to insist on poetry, try some Kipling. You might find some of it rather instructive. Over and out."
In this thread here.
So I suggest you start looking at the poems by Rudyard Kipling, which happen to include a great many about war.
As Seen on HBO.
The I Love Bees ARG, for all the obsession and hype that surrounded it in the world at large, passed by with little more than a few ripples within the Halo Story community. Well after almost a year, Webshift has inflated his water wings and started thrashing about. In addition to reorganizing the audio clips into chronological order, he's hard at work grafting their contents to the primary story. What a trooper!
One of my constant bug-bears is the steady flow of emails proclaiming some connection to the Halo storyline and the bible. We do get the bible in Scotland. Most of us still sacrifice lambs, but we have heard of this new fangled Christianity.
However, one must occasionally bend to a well thought out (and readable) theory.
Jonathon Kanevsky (email@example.com) writes:
First thing: there are several connections made with the bible in the Halo storyline. Most prominent is the name of the installation: Halo. Isn't that what's used to mark angels?
Secondly, this seems to be following the story of "Noahs Ark". Gravemind says that he is "a monument to all your sins". He in turn seems to be able to control the Flood, which is another biblical reference. God sent the flood to wipe out humanity for their sins. It seems the Halo Flood is doing just that, just maybe not for actual sins. At the end of the last mission on Halo 2, Guilty Spark says that the one place that can control all of the Halo's is the "Ark", which the last cutscene seems to point out as earth. Wouldn't it make sense that the Forerunners would put something of such importance in a place that they could, in a sense, ride out the Flood. So perhaps the earth took the place of Noah's ark, keeping it's inhabitants safe from the devastating effects of the ring, and allowing them to spread over the galaxy again. This definately points to the Humans as modern Forerunners.
Besides that, why would they keep samples for later study if they expected to destroy themselves? I believe that the plan for Halo was not to make the galaxy devoid of sentient life, but to erase it in the area the flood had access to, starving them and leaving only the samples in biostasis.
As for the Covenant, I believe they have no true biological connection with the Forerunners, but instead just evolved in their absence, thereby becoming the huge religous freaks they were about the structures that had no explanation.
Personally, I'd prefer a grander solution, but I particularly liked the inclusion of the fact Flood samples were kept back for study. It does seem like a discrepancy.
Or a plot bunny.
Either way, if you don't have anything to add to this theory, please don't email us about Noah's Ark connections.
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 :)
An "Attack on the Two Control Rooms" mention in The Art of Halo?
As always, is it a glitch or a feature? A typo or insight?
Archetypal Auspices are all Amazing; Alliterately I Assault, Animate things...
Again on the forum front, BeastIce (email@example.com) provides a brief, but thorough overview of Halo's use of common literary (though specifically from this perspective, psychological) archetypes. Check it out.
Next up: Schemes and Tropes!
It's. Because. She's. Evil!
Alex Brooks (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
I was reading the transcript for the Pillar of Autumn the other day when I noticed something that caught my attention. When the Chief reaches the ship's bridge, Keyes says
"I'm initiating Cole Protocol Article 2. We're abandoning the Autumn."
This automatically means they are required to wipe the ship's databanks of any crucial information, including the location of Earth. Cortana is sent with the Chief to prevent the Covenant from capturing her. Either Keyes or Cortana would have had to wipe the databanks. If Cortana didn't, Keyes would have to.
However, in The Maw, 343 Guilty Spark scans the ship's databanks and discovers all sorts of info. He says
"And to think that you would destroy this installation. As well as this record". If he had been scanning Cortana's data, he wouldn't have said that. Cortana wouldn't be destroyed, as she is with the Chief, so he was obviously scanning the ship's records.
If Cortana didn't wipe the databanks, why didn't Keyes? If Keyes didn't wipe the databanks, why didn't Cortana? Something is seriously wrong.
UrsusArctos takes a moment to tie together speculation on The Monkey King with First Strike's King Under the Mountain, asserting that the latter, too, might be of Chinese origin (and not a Tolkien allusion after all). Tartarus and his "Fist of Rukt" ('Blood' in Hindi, eh? Neat!) are thrown in there to boot.
More interesting stuff on the forum can be found here where BS Halo rks speculates on the nature of the track listings on the Halo 2 soundtrack. Now I know we've been waiting a long time for Volume II, but if someone claims to see Jesus in the lining I swear I'm outta here.
It doesn't happen very often, but sometimes a theory waddles up to you with its big goo goo eyes, holds out its chubby little arms and just squawks "mummy!" at you. That's what this little begger did.
The theory starts here on the forum when Wado SG throws out a thought about the Covenant AI Cortana mentions in High Charity. Almost as a joke he mentioned that the AIs name should be Gabriel, as in, the fallen angel.
A quick wiki reveals more candidates and brings up an interesting connection.
Eric Trautmann's reference to angels has been thrown up in the past, but has Wado stumbled upon a viable link to the book?
Think on it. I'm off to coo over baby Mephistopheles.
A new enemy in the HGN?
A while ago, Ross Mills noticed an advertisement for the Halo Graphic Novel; one of the drawings (seemingly by Simon Bisley, artist of "The Last Voyage of the Infinite Succor") shows an elite-like creature, but with no split mandible and, most noticeably, four eyes rather than two.
While some artistic license is to be expected, other images by the same artist clearly show an Elite with the usual split chin and ocular equipment.
So what are we looking at? A Flood form, or something completely different? Time, as always, will tell.
One must wait for the opportune moment
Christopher Pawlukiewicz (email@example.com) writes:
Well, the other night, while doing some research for a completely differently-oriented Halo project, I happened upon a verse in Revelations (1:16):
In his right hand He held seven stars,
and out of His mouth came a sharp two-
edged sword; and His face was like the
sun shining its strength.
Now (since I was doing Halo-related research) the first thing that came to mind was that there seven Halos, or rather, seven installations as the monitors put it. But I wasn't completely sure, so I asked a friend in IRC. He confirmed it, and linked me to the Halo 2 Cutscene Library here at HBO. I was even more elated to find that the exact timestamp on the movie was indeed 1:16, exactly the same as the verse number that I had just seen.
I watched the cutscene over and over again, and saw Keyes jump over and crawl under the unnecessarily complex system of machines that orbit around the platform, and the timing of the energy blast that emanated from inside the Halo. It all seemed so deliberate, as if the time and verse correlation was meant to be there. Bungie was at its tricks again.
I'm always telling the truth, yet people are always surprised when I do.
keenan (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
The phrase "Why would you hesitate to do what you have already done"? is not reffering to a previous activation of the halo rings, it is simply reffering to
the Master Chief killing Flood.
He has just spent many hours wading through the Flood trying to stop them, GS 343 is simply confused as to why he (MC) would hesitate now he has the chance to stop them all.
There is a saying " If you look long enough at a hay stack you'll find a needle".
While Finn has been pillaging my loot and stealing away in the middle of the night with the fair maidens I had my eyes on - Stuntmutt, the scabrous dog insists he was first to come across this little gem.
I know he's wrong, but I'll be damned if I can prove it.
Stuntmutt (email@example.com) writes:
>From Sacred Icon -
Halo. Its divine wind will rush through the stars, propelling all who are worthy along the path to salvation.
Of course, 'divine wind' is a literal translation of 'Kamikaze' (see below).
A possible in-joke by the writer that the Covenant would be committing suicide...?
In the Japanese language, kamikaze (IPA: [kamikaze]) (Japanese:??), usually translated as "divine wind" (kami is the word for "god", "spirit", or "divinity"; and kaze for "wind"), came into being as the name of a legendary typhoon said to have saved Japan from a Mongol invasion fleet in 1281.
In the interests of a fair and thorough investigation - and in keeping him quiet - here it is for all to see.
To wind up today's posts, I giveth you confusion!
Bart Benitez (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
While playing The Pillar of Autumn, I noticed that the weapons that were striking the ship were blue beams. Having read the books, I was confused, as to how this could be, as all the ship-to-ship weapons in use by the Covenant before the events of the first game were similar to those launched by their Morter tank only on a larger scale.
However, after the events of Halo, after the Chief takes over the Ascendant Justice, Cortana eventually discovers that the Covenant had been using the weapon in a very crude manner, aparently oblivious to it's true potential. She then proceeds to create new equations that allow her to focus the weapon into a far more powerful and precise beam weapon. Cortana also noted that the AI on the ship looked familiar, even going so far as to say "Small protions of the alien software looked like [Cortana]". She used a subroutine taken from the Covenant AI that allowed her to create copies or partial copies of herself.
We know she had herself created 2 copies (one that was sent with the Chief when they boarded the Unyielding Hirophant and the other as a test when she found the routine within the Covenant AI) and that one of the copies copied itself multiple (tens, hundreds, possibly even thousands) of times aboard the Unyielding Hirophant prior to it's destruction. After it's destruction, several shards from the Time-Space warping crystal were recovered by the Covenant. Is it possible that one of the Cortana copies was recovered, only partially damaged, re-purposed by the Covenant, and sent back in time eventually ending up aboard the Ascendant Justice and refining the weapons systems of that one ship, which was the ship firing upon the Pillar of Autumn? Chintzy, yes, weird, yes, why, no idea.
The Halo Graphic Novel has spurred all sorts of conversations and deviations about exactly what story tidbits are revealed. Not all of them are complimentary. Here's a nice roundup:
Gutupio looks at the gallery pages and finds something interesting.
There's more discussion on the subject (including code interpretation) here
The identity of the Arbiter still remains secret - sadly enough - but that doesn't stop certain people speculating
There's stuff about the ancient technologies of Elites
And last but not least, Mike G notes:
The Elite with no mandables in the concept art of the halo graphic novel I heard mentioned raises some points inside my head. When I was watching the bungie documentary on the making of the E3 teaser trailer I noticed on one of the computer screens about a third of the way through the documentary a figure which may be this Elite with no mandables.
Also in one of the weekly updates it is mentioned that bungie is working in 'the AI for somthing big'....
Do you want to be spooked about Halo 3's legendary? Read on . . .
UrsusArctos (email@example.com) writes:
Robert-117 made a very interesting suggestion about the creatures seen in the Halo 3 trailer documentary- he suggested that they were indeed prophets in armor. Agreed, the prophets did put up a fight as that mural shows, but it seems to have been a very long time ago. The present prophets have been sitting in administrative posts for too long, they hardly seem to be the types to do any real fighting. Regret fought the Master Chief ferociously, but he was facing a real and very deadly threat, wasn't he? Besides, he was on that floating throne of his all the time. I imagine the rest of the Prophets would be like Regret- stay back and fight only when threatened, because they're likely small in number and best used for their intelligence.
As to what the creatures were...didn't Joe Staten mention in the last interview that the Prophets and their Engineer librarians had a library of Forerunner glyphs, and hinted that at least some of them might know a lot more about the Forerunner glyphs than it seems? Jaime Greisemer mentioned in an old interview that the Prophets were meant to be included in Halo, but got shifted into the background, although their intentions could be deduced under close inspection. The Guilty Spark line "I would conjecture that the other species on the installation are responsible for releasing the flood. They have been most persistent in accessing restricted areas." most likely refers to the Prophets. Halo 04 had extensive research facilities and a huge cache of data on flood biology. If the Prophets knew the Forerunner language or at least some of it, they could have recovered all this data and translated it, using it for their own purposes. Engineers are technical geniuses, they could build a great big genetics lab for the Prophets based on data from installation 04. The Prophets could then splice together data from different Covenant species to create whole new ones-a Brute-Elite mix with some added flood traits, for instance.
I know that the idea of a Brute-Elite hybrid(with or without a little flood in it) sounds crazy, but doesn't it make sense? The Brutes are a whole lot tougher than the Elites and almost exclusively loyal to the Prophets alone. The Elites, however, are a lot smarter, as well as being highly disciplined. A creature with Brute toughness and Elite versatility would do a lot better on the battlefield than an ordinary Elite or a stupid smelly Brute, and might give a decisive edge against the other side. Why not hide the new creature(Maybe it looks like a mandible-less Elite?) under a breath mask so that none of your enemies recognize this new threat until it's too late?
I used to have a coral necklace, and a childhood friend has an onyx one. I think that's the one I broke when we were playing 'Aladdin' at school. It's probably significant. Never did like onyx much. Too cold.
UrsusArctos (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
I read the Halo 3 Data Archive's excellent first look at connecting Ghosts of Onyx with Halo 3. One of the things that interested me the most was their interpretation of the sentence on the (non-final) back cover, "The Master Chief stays back to defend a beleagured earth." They interpreted that as referring to Master Chief staying back to fight Regret, and that the events of Ghosts of Onyx occur during the events of Halo 2. Eric Nylund also mentioned that the other Spartans didn't appear in Halo 2 because they were off doing something elsewhere, almost certainly on Onyx. And, finally, we have Frankie saying in one of the weekly updates (I think it was either on 12 or 16 May) that the human fleet at Earth was distracted by the events of Delta Halo. The back cover reads, "The fleets of the UNSC and Covenant race to claim it (The Forerunner artifact on Onyx) to change the course of the Human-Covenant war."
What does all this mean? First thing, the cause of the fleet leaving Earth doesn't seem to be the distraction caused by Delta Halo, but rather, by Onyx. If both events are happening at the same time, then the events at Delta Halo might be linked to those at Onyx, and something that happened on Delta Halo may have resulted in something else that happened at Onyx that the UNSC was aware of, and so rushed off. The Forerunner power on Onyx seems to be able to think and act on its own, and it might be connected to the Halos in some way or the other. For all you know, it might be watching John, the Arbiter, the flood rampage and all the other things going on Delta Halo and reacting accordingly. That way, the events of Delta Halo would be responsible for luring away the UNSC fleet (albeit indirectly). Interestingly, that would mean they neglected the covenant armada called in by Regret's distress beacon, leaving Earth itself open to invasion. That artifact is clearly worth more than Earth's freedom.
Second, Ackerson and Section-III(Which he is a member of) knew about something on Onyx for quite a while, just like they knew about the caverns under Menachite mountain on Reach. If the plan had been in response to Regret's initial half-assed invasion scheme, they cooked it up very fast indeed, and put it into execution in no time at all. Given Ackerson's hatred of the Spartan program, this makes me think that he wants a suicide mission to buy time for something else. Multiple plot threads have been mentioned in the novel, one of which might be a deeper look into Section-III's activities
A Big Day for Everyone
Yes, game journalists around the world slept soundly last night, a silly smirk curling up on the one side of their mouths. And who can blame them: all that news from X06 would've tuckered anyone out. For the comprehensive, check out Wednesday's news.
In brief however: Halo Wars (name and in-demo Spartan catch phrase hopefully subject to change), a real-time strategy (RTS) based in the early days and first encounters of the Human-Covenant conflict, is being developed by Ensemble Studios. The trailer is beautiful. The premise is great. In some aspects there does appear to be the hint of a pure motive (finishing of what Bungie started oh, so many years ago).
The Human player's base of operations is the UNSC Spirit of Fire (whose logo is visible during the halowars.com loading page), a Phoenix Class ship, with the rather haunting motto of Exitus Acta Probat, or, as Slothboy points out "The result justifies the deed".
There have been some murmurings of "Contradiction! Inconsistency!" from the ranks already: the Elites are lumbering and giant compared to their sleek and agile Halo 2 counterparts (though it could be, as I wondered and Peptuck as well, that they are merely wearing a bulky, cold-weather armour). Again, Elites are not encountered in The Fall of Reach until the battle of Reach itself (as dude points out here) making their inclusion in these battles somewhat problematic (yes, yes, perhaps no one survived to report them, etc. but ONI Intelligence seems to have been quite active in the first days after contact, and even before if our intuition serves us correctly). This has to be my least favourite portion of the liturgy of any developing story universe: "Forever and ever, Ret-con without end. Amen."
Second is the announcement that Wingnut Interactive, Peter Jackson's own game studio in partnership with Microsoft, will be creating a new Halo series (not just a single installment) that will be "neither a game nor a film", as Jordan-117 reports. Tantalizing.
Excitement abounds, there's no denying that. Due to the eclectic emotions still busying themselves down into a state of cozy equilibrium, I would encourage you to take this next bit... as you should; that is, in a not entirely negative way. This will merely express one side (and admittedly the cooler, somber one) of the expanse that is the internal continuum (talking of the other, a nigh-wholesale excitement shared the world over, seems slightly redundant at this point). I would like to quote something, something short and succinct, and I hope you will understand.
"Imagine a painting of a horse, a marvellous white stallion. This stallion happens to be lying in a crumpled heap on the ground, dead. And [insert title here] employees are standing around it in a semicircle, beating the horse with various blunt objects. The painting is titled..."
Niven and Pournelle Talk Bungie
Apparently Bungie folk have been chatting it up with Mr. Niven and Mr. Pournelle in regards to future game topics and stories, including Legacy of Heorot (I doubt it; Bungie's never been interested in permutations of the Heroic Epic :P ). Interesting to see what will become of this.
He he. According to "John Spartan-117", apparently there's an Akira fan on the Bungie team (this also just in: milk comes from cows! ;) ). While (gasp!) modding he found a little gem in the code, labeling Regret's slipspace-induced explosion over New Mombasa "Tetsuo and Kaneda". :)
Hmmm. Was Halo Wars codenamed Phoenix by Ensemble? Apparently so.
This certainly isn't the original project to bear the title, given the few "medieval", Myth-like details that surfaced under Bungie, but it is a nice tip-o-the-hat nonetheless. Thanks, Narcogen.
(Matt confirms that Bungie's Phoenix was NOT Halo related. Thanks, Matt.)
While casually engaging in some awesome hax0rz, Dojorkan (Dojorkan@gmail.com) stumbled across a few pieces of interesting "dialogue" in H2. That is, on-screen placeholder text showing lines that should normally be delivered by Cortana. From the level High Charity:
the jackals and drones have declared themselves the servants of the brutes. the hunters have sworn allegiance to the elites
the grunts seem to be neutral, or at least afraid to announce which side they support. except for truth the prophets aren't saying a word.
END POSSABLE HALO3 SPOILERS
Also I dont think I've heard this before, no matter how long I wait:
i've lost control of the conduit! it's breaking away from the ship
When you pass through the first room in he chapter "Please, make yourelf at home:
flood spores have contaminated the city's life-support infrastructure - the filtration systems are overloading!
When you come across the flood stuff on the wall:
the amount of flood bio-mass is increasing exponentially. there are reports of infestations in every district!
if the speed of the flood's spread in this tower is any indication, it won't take long for it to overrun the entire city
Well, ain't that somethin' spiffy.
UrsusArctos contributes a lot to this page, and I almost glossed over this email as stuff we'd heard before, but it grew on me. Have a look, see what you think.
UrsusArctos (email@example.com) writes:
The Great Journey- Potentially the strongest Tolkien connection, and also the hardest one to make in some ways. The immortal Elves were called by the Valar(Archangels) to cross the Great Sea of Middle Earth and come to their deathless realm of Valinor, where nothing died(Whatever was killed would have its spirit wait in a sort of Valhalla). But, however, they were fated to prepare the world for the coming of Men(Whom the Elves called the Aftercomers or the Followers). Some of the Elves refused to go along on the Great Journey, and they were left behind(Compare with what Truth says to the Arbiter and Mercy says to the Master Chief). Others went to Valinor and returned later, most of them during Feanor's war of the Silmarils. After the defeat of Sauron in Lord of the Rings, most of the Elves went west over the sea and never returned.
Just to be speculative, what if the Forerunner saw the flood threat approaching, and decided to set things up for later races to inhabit the galaxy? The Halos fired, and the forerunner died physically, but, as with Tolkien's elves, went to a place where they could linger on and continue to influence the events of the world, and even come back into the world when needed. According to Joe Staten, the Forerunner never really died out, but "faded away", an epithet that easily fits the fate of slain Elves. (Guilty Spark, an AI, would consider physical death to be the end, and not appreciate the great beyond.) Master Chief was born in Elysium, the blessed afterlife of the Greeks. He has an innate understanding of forerunner writing and technology. Could he be a reincarnated forerunner, who was sent back from the Halo equivalent of Valhalla through whatever technology the forerunners had created over the centuries?
Then there's the sea, another recurring theme in the Great Journey. People have noticed the wierd link between water and the Halos ever since the game came out, pointing out higher water levels in Silent Cartographer and AotCR, the frozen waterfall near Halo 04's control room, driftwood on SC, the lake Regret's temple is on top of, so on. In First Strike, the hallway leading to the room with the crystal has blue tiles that give the impression of waves breaking upon a shore. High Charity has seagulls aboard.(Stephen Loftus pointed that one out on the forum). Elves who come near the sea and hear the call of the gull can no longer resist the desire to go on the Great Journey(from Lord of the Rings). Regret: "It's divine wind will rush through the stars, propelling the worthy along the path to salvation". Doesn't wind propel sailing ships?
eMCee (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
William Blake, who is best known in the Haloverse for connections drawn from "The Marriage of Heaven and Hell" in the Cortana Letters, also wrote a long and complex fictional mythology that appears to parallel the different factions of the Story.
The essentials of the myth are the four main characters known as Zoas. These four were derived from a primordial man named Albion, who fell and "split" into these four Zoas. Their names are Urizen, Luvah, Urthona, and Tharmas. Right off the bat we can draw a few conclusions. First, each of the names sounds similar to another word: Urizen/Reason, Luvah/Lover, Urthona/Earth, Tharmas/Tharms (Tharms is an archaic word meaning "twisted guts"). From these meanings we can begin to classify some of the factions of Halo as parallel to specific Zoas.
I suppose the most obvious parallel is Tharmas, as "twisted guts" describes The Flood pretty well, but the support for the connection doesn't end there. While poking around on google I found a page at Rochester.edu devoted to Blake, and found a few charts that display the different qualities of the Zoas. A chart taken from William Blake: The Complete Poems (ed. Alicia Ostriker) divides the Zoas into qualities such as Eternal Role, Fallen Character, Fallen Form, and Region. Of particular interest is the Fallen Form of Tharmas, which can be described as "Flood" or "Chaos." The Region associated with Tharmas is "circumference," possibly a symbol for Halo.
Urthona threw me for a loop at first because its association with Earth led me to believe it represented humanity, but things didn't add up. A chart by Northrop Frye taken from Fearful Symmetry: A Study of William Blake associated Urthona with things like "Death" (more akin to sleep) and an underground dwelling. The release of the Halo 3 trailer clarified this for me, leading me to believe that Urthona is a symbol for The Forerunner. The possible presence of The Ark under Earth's surface helps to associate Urthona with the Forerunner on Earth.
Humanity is represented by Luvah. Luvah is asscociated with "Passion" and "Rebellion" according to Ostriker's Chart, and also has the Fallen Character of "Orc and the Shadowy Female" (the combination of which can also be called "Demon Red"). I believe this to be symbolic of the Master Chief and Cortana, as they are "rebelling" against The Covenant in a sense, and Cortana is a shadowy female without a doubt.
Urizen is the only one left, and is represenative of The Covenant. Urizen is associated with "God, Priest, or King," and has the virture of Faith and the fallen character of Doubt and Tyranny. Urizen is the antagonist of Blake's Mythology, and is in constant opposition with the other Zoas, just as The Covenant are the antagonistic force in Halo.
These parallels might not add much to our knowledge of the story, but they seem to represent Blake as a much more important influence on the Halo Story than previously thought. Perhaps even more intriguing is the role descendants of William Blake played in shaping Halo's story. Bill Everett, creator of Namor: The Sub Mariner (as slyly mentioned by Frankie in a weekly update) said that the inspiration for Namor came from a poem by Coleridge titled "The Rime of the Ancient Mariner." It's divided into Seven parts, the third of which seems to reflect aspects of Halo's story, not to mention some quotes from both Halo and Marathon. That said, the connections are loose and only produce more speculation, so I digress (that doesn't mean you shouldn't check out the poem for yourself, its a good read).
Here are links to the charts used.
It's a bit like English homework, isn't it? No wrong answers, just a lot of the teacher staring at you . . .
I wandered lonely as a cloud, that floats o'er hill & dale...
DHalo (email@example.com) writes:
This is being analyzed again, as Marty has said:
That it has not been solved as of yet. What if the voice in the poem is the "formidable" construct Cortana mentioned was fighting back before the Chief took off on the ship? Possibly Forerunner? Wanting forgiveness for his and his creator's crimes against God for harboring such horrid creatures as the Flood?
For a possible theory...The Forerunner, before they died, possibly realized there is a God, and left this AI behind to seek a way to stop the never ending cycle that is the Halos. What do I mean by never ending cycle? As the poem says, time has no end, no beginning, no purpose. (or maybe, more precisely, the AI's time) What if this is eluding to the a loop that the Halos create? I think the Halos constantly kill and recreate life, to then kill it again sometime in the future, and this AI wants to break a possible cycle. However the last line suggests it is still as morbid as his predecessors, as he "lives to see death, destruction, ____ over the light." Just some food for thought.
Food for thought, you say ...tae a haggis! Great chieftain o' the puddin' race!
Who dares wake me from my slumber, my eternal abyss that I chose. Who approaches and intrudes upon my world, with clarity and grace . . .
Actually it's Mr Bananas, with this massive, beautifully constructed theory.
Read it, and read on.
I'm not dead, stop stabbing me with sticks, you little . . .
You may have noticed a small, but well formed, thread on the forum called Story Shenanigans
Cody Miller raises three questions:
What was going on with Regret's 'premature' arrival on Earth. Why did he not expect humans?
Which I think was answered nicely by InnerRayq, referencing the novels here . And an answer that relies more on the games from Leviathan here.
Both boil down to - he's trigger happy and there was no reference to the Ark also being the home of the human race.
Personally, I reckon Librarian has something to do with that...
Question 2: What is the 'unusually formiddable' Covenant Construct Cortana encounters on High Charity?
This poses more of a challenge. I reckon Peptuck has it nicely thought out here. Incidentally - a new pet theory has been born below.
And Lastly: Two Betrayals. What is Spark really saying when he mentions 'last time you asked me?'
This one has been gone over before, check out the Monitor page for more information.
However, in saying that, I like the theory batted about by Scarab here.
But if that's too clear cut, there's always Narc's enigma wrapped in a sausage answer.
Did that help? I don't see why you couldn't read that concise discussion by yourself.
Pelican Dropship, 400 years old?
The Halo Wars Timeline has provided us with an intriguing piece of artwork, which I find to be both informative and controversial.
This picture shows a battle scene which supposedly dates back from the 22nd century Frieden-Koslovic-UN wars. But upon closer inspection, we can see three Pelicans, or at least Pelican-like, aircrafts. Question is, how come the UNSC still uses Pelicans after 400 years of active service?
My guess is, these Pelicans might be outdated versions of the 26th century Pelicans, despite their obvious similarity. But that's still quite a long shot.
Conversations from the Universe
SPARTAN-034 has asked a few questions regarding little bits of information from the Conversations from the Universe booklet. The first two questions have already been answered, the last one is a bit more complicated. Swing by, and check it out.
The "Believe" Campaign
Onebitrocket asks if the Believe campaign is a part of Halo canon. Although the Halo 3 Believe campaign is canon, some of the events portrayed in the films have not quite been tied in to the Halo 3 storyline. Neil Blomkamp's TV ads however, are believed to be canon-accurate, as they lead up to the Sierra 117 level in Halo 3.
Marathon and Combine
David Sharp writes to us about a connection he's found between the Combine from Half Life 2 and Maratho
David Sharp (firstname.lastname@example.org) writes:
Hi, nice site.
I honestly don't think Marathon and Halo are set in the same universe, I think it's just a nice link Bungie put in.
Anyway, that's not why I'm posting. The combine use this symbol: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Image:Combine.svg
You have to admit it does look pretty close. Thanks for reading, I hope it's good enough to go on your lovely site. :D
Forerunners studying reanimation>
What if the Flood's capability to bring dead organisms back to life determined the Forerunners to replicate or research its reanimation techniques, among other things? Dantrell posted this thought on the forum. It's scary, it's inhuman ... but it could be the truth.
Halo 3 Campaign
RyanTheHeretic asks some questions about parts of Halo 3's Campaign, some of which hadn't been discussed before (to the best of my knowledge). His inquiries include the crashing of the Flood-infested ship in Voi, Cortana's data device, and the Elites being aware that a data storage device was placed on that ship.
Ryan's questions are answered here by mendicantbias00, here by Ross Mills, and here by gspawn -- all of the responses provide believable explanations (and sometimes straight-to-the-point one liners) to each query.
Serina, Cutter, and the Master Chief | Discuss this theory!
Nomis78 comes up with a question on the forum. (This isn't completely Halo Wars related, so Halo canon fundamentalists shouldn't feel too uncomfortable with this theory.)
The little audio snippet of Serina trying to wake Cutter in the game's Legendary credits sparked a new theory. The Spirit of Fire, by the end of Halo Wars, is located well beyond UNSC space, and so is the Forward Unto Dawn by the end of Halo 3. The audio snippet isn't dated, as far as we know, but what if the crew of the Spirit of Fire (after being placed in cryosleep, obviously) found the Forward Unto Dawn (and thus, Master Chief and Cortana) by 2552-2553? It seems very far-fetched, but the possibilities of creating new story arcs based on that hypothesis are pretty thrilling.
If you want to share your thoughts on this theory, click the "Discuss this theory!" button in the news title.
(Oh and by the way, this is the 1117th news post! :P)
StrengthInFaith let us know that he'd just finished reading the Beastarium, and a few things caught his attention. His post sparked a discussion on what "kind" of humans - young, old, soldiers etc. - are deemed "Reclaimers" by Forerunner constructs such as Sentinels and Monitors. A discussion on how the Flood uses telepathy has also kicked off by xMixMasterx.
Check the thread for more developments!
Good thing I've been rummaging through my inbox; otherwise I'd have missed this epic feat of fan-speculated material.
Antoni Koziol (email@example.com) writes:
On the Forerunner-Human interconnection
Hello, I have been reading through the story pages on the website and they're very interesting. Especially the ones regarding the Forerunner. I (MLG Cheehwawa) have something that I think you guys at HBO would find interesting. Maybe even worthy of posting up on the forerunner story page. Here it is --
I keep hearing people say that the Forerunner "de-evolved" into humanity some time around the Halos' initial firing. This is quite impossible. I believe that humans evolved into Forerunner, hundreds of thousands of years ago.
Let's start at the beginning.
200,000 BCE (approx.)
Modern humans evolve in what is now known as Africa. They remain in their cradle for some 100,000 years.
The Forerunner encounter the Flood on the outer rim of the Milky Way Galaxy. This sparks a 300 year long Forerunner-Flood war and construction on the Halo array begins.
98,665 BCE (approx..)
The Halos and Ark are completed. Humanity is discovered by the Librarian. The Earth's Ark portal is built by Sentinel-like machines. The Librarian strands herself on Earth so that Didact will end the war. The Halos are activated, wiping out all sentient life in the Galaxy. Humanity returns to Earth through the Ark portal and leaves their cradle, Africa, and sets off to populate the rest of the Earth.
Now do you see why it is impossible for the Forerunner to have evolved into humanity? Humanity was around for 100,000 years before the Forerunner found them. Now where does my crazy theory play into all of this? Start with the Precursors:
From the Halo 3 Bestiarum:
Tier 0: Transsentient
As the [Forerunners] had no examples of civilizations with technological accomplishment greater than themselves - with the exception of the Precursors - this is a theoretical ceiling. They can travel intergalactic and accelerate evolution of intelligent life. These may be creatures of legend.
The Precursors had the ability to advance the evolution of sentient life -- why would Bungie specify this power they had if it wasn't integral to the story in some way? This is the only small passage of the Precursors that we have ever heard, so it surely garners some importance.
The fact that humanity was around for 100,000 years prior to the Forerunner being at their pinnacle of technological evolution proves that humanity did not come from the Forerunner... but could the Forerunner have come from humanity?
It is entirely possible (and plausible) that the Precursors visited Earth some time between 200,000 BCE and 96,000 BCE and took up some early humans to their own worlds, and those humans were exposed to the Precursors' evolutionary acceleration technology, becoming an advanced sub-species of h. sapiens.
What would they look like? Most likely not very different than, us but most certainly different; possibly a set of exterior differences similar to the differences between h. sapiens and h. neanderthalis.
From the 6th Halo 3 Terminal:
L: My work is done. The portal is inactive, and I've begun the burial measures. Soon there'll be nothing but sand and rock and normal ferrite signatures.
You should see the mountain that watches over it. A beautiful thing--a snowcapped sentinel. That's where I will spend what time is left to me.
Did I tell you? I built a garden. The earth is so rich. A seed falls and a tree sprouts or a flower blooms. There's so much...potential. We knew this was a special place because of them, but unless you've been here, you can't know.
I have to stop transmitting. The thing is listening. Its [thinking dead] are babbling--laughing through every channel they can find.
Be proud. The Mind claims victory, yet it still doesn't suspect. You've outwitted it, my love. And now you can destroy it.
But you cannot save me.
-- The Librarian
Why did the Librarian deem humanity so special?
The Librarian indexed many species besides humanity; all of the species in the Halo trilogy would logically have been indexed and saved in the Ark by the Forerunners. Elites, Prophets, Brutes, etc. -- why was humanity different?
I believe it's because humanity shared many distinct characteristics with the Forerunner. They looked similar, thought similar, and thus were deemed the Reclaimers. All because of the Precursors.
From the level "Two Betrayals" in Halo:
"We have followed outbreak containment procedure to the letter. You were with me each step of the way, as we managed this crisis."
-- 343 Guilty Spark
343 Guilty Spark is most likely rampant, however, I don't think this means we can write him off fully. If Spark is simply confusing the Master Chief with the last being who activated the ring ca. 100,000 BCE, this would mean the two bear physical resemblance.
I am pretty sure that the last person to activate the rings would have been Didact, the Forerunner general. Didact was the lover of the Librarian, the female Forerunner who found Earth and deemed humanity more special than the other sapient species in the galaxy.
From the 4th Halo 3 Terminal:
I'm trapped. On a beautiful, empty world. Its inhabitants have been safely indexed, every single one of them. They're special--well worth the effort it took to build one final gateway even at this late hour. This may be our last communication. I'm begging you. Fire the Array. Light the weapon, and let it be done.
-- The Librarian
She was speaking to Didact. Can we assume that Didact did what the Librarian had been asking him to do for so long [activate the rings]? She stranded herself on Earth by destroying her own fleet so that Didact would no longer resist firing the rings. If he did activate them, this would mean he did it on Alpha Halo... with the help of Spark. Spark thought that the Chief was Didact.
From the level "Halo" in Halo 3:
(His eye turns Blue) You are the child of my makers. Inheritor of all they left behind. You are Forerunner! But this ring... (Eye turns Red again) ...is mine.
-- 343 Guilty Spark
Many people will write this line off as being figurative, but not I. I believe that what Spark meant was that modern humanity (and thus the Chief) literally is the child of the Forerunner. But a child cannot have one parent, they need two. The Forerunner are the mother, and pre-activation humans ("archaic h. sapiens") are the father.
Earth is Eden.
Early Humans are Adam.
The Forerunner are Eve, taken from the rib of Adam.
Modern humans (Reclaimers) are the offspring of Adam and Eve.
Precursors are God.
[ we could go one step further and say that the Flood are Lilith, but that's another theory all together ]
Being a sub-species of h. sapiens, the Forerunner would possibly be able to mate with humanity while producing a mixed offspring. This could be the possibly spark which ignited humanity's exit from Africa; we had been in Africa from 200,000 BCE until 100,000 BCE... and then we all of the sudden decide to (and are for the first time successful in) expanding outward into the rest of the world.
Coincidence? I think not..
From the 4th Halo 3 Terminal:
What has taken you millennia to achieve I erase in seconds.
Welcome back to the [Stone Age], vermin. Welcome home.
-- Medicant Bias
I think that this quote holds significant importance (especially since Truth loves calling us humans "vermin"). We know that humanity evolved on Earth, so we did not come from outer space. If the Forerunner did indeed come from early humans, they could have been reverted to stone-age technologies by the Halos' activation. They would be stranded wherever they ended up.
From the 8th Cortana letter:
In a relatively brief period of time, the achievements of SolCore had resulted in an economically stable, technologically mature, rapidly expanding empire of eight human worlds. Advancements in technology arrived at a faster pace than the most optimistic scientists could have ever envisioned. Unexpected contact with indigenous human populations on four "lost colony" worlds led to a frenzy of research as archaeologists, theologians, astronomers, and evolutionary biologists competed to offer an explanation for the startling discovery.
There there were "indigenous humans" found on new planets. Science states that humanity could not evolve identically (or even near-identically) in more than one location, so this would imply that the "humans" were here before the UNSC discovered the worlds. I would say the "indigenous humans" are actually the sub species of h. sapiens -- surviving Forerunner (or simply Reclaimers) who exited the Ark after the Halos' activation and were stranded on remote worlds with no more technology than they (we?) had in the Stone age. But the Forerunner went extinct after the Halos fired.... or did they?
From Halo: Contact Harvest:
"The Forerunners," the Minister whispered. "Some were left behind."
-- Prophet of Regret
Having established that humanity evolved 100,000 years before the Forerunner found them (with roots reaching back 2,000,000 years on Earth) its safe to assume that since the Minister recognized humans as "living Gods," and "left-behind Forerunner," then my theory may well be.
Regarding the Prophets
The Prophets: The original Reclaimers? I think that they were.
We know that humans had a special role in the Forerunners' plan -- we are the Reclaimers. We are meant to reclaim the galaxy after we rise up, and live up to the Forerunners' accomplishments. We are the only species with the ability to activate the Halo rings...
But the Halo rings were built before humanity was even found, so wouldn't there have been a different species with a similar entitlement before us?
Why did humans not know anything about the Forerunner until we found the Halos? Surely they would have left us some sort of clues as to our past relations with the super-race known as the Forerunner... or maybe not. Maybe they didn't have the time.
ca. 100,000 BCE the Halo rings were set off. Before that, all species (sentient and sapient) were indexed (sent on a ship) to the Ark by the Forerunner. This would logically include humans, Prophets, Elites, Brutes, etc. otherwise they wouldn't be around during the Halo trilogy.
Humans were one of the last species to be discovered (by the Librarian) and indexed, as proved in Halo 3's Terminals. This would certainly put some strain on what the Forerunner could construct on Earth, right? I mean they barely had time to build and bury "one last portal" (the one in Africa).
This is where the Prophets come in.
Why did the Prophets have the earliest access to Forerunner technology in the Halo series? They found Forerunner relics on their homeworld (before it was destroyed by a supernova) and then they travelled to the Elite homeworld and forged the Covenant after a long, cut-throat war.
I think that the Prophets were the original Reclaimers, but had their title revoked after the humans were found just prior to the Halos;' activation. Why would the Prophets have been replaced? Maybe the Forerunner saw something special in us.
Humans are known as the Reclaimers, but before being able to reclaim, they would need to be taught. Since the Forerunner did not have the time to make teaching installations on Earth, they may have bestowed this right on the already-indexed Prophets.
This is further evidenced by the Prophets' mistranslation of a Forerunner word meaning "Reclaimer" -- however, they read it as "Reclamation." (Halo: Contact Harvest) Is it possible that the "Reclaimer" glyph was originally representant of the Prophet species and not human?
Seeing that the Forerunner indexed all organisms on worlds which they indexed, leaving them temporarily devoid of all life, they must have had some sort of advanced and highly sensitive DNA analyzer to categorize and index each of these alien species.
This technology would most likely be pivotal to the technology which only humans can activate (namely the Halos' control rooms). If the Humans were made Reclaimers, replacing the Prophets, a simple "DNA allowance" would be switched within the technology (however it works) making humans the only ones who could activate the Halos, instead of the Prophets.
[ Sort of like an ex-girlfriend taking away your key to her apartment and giving it to a new guy. ]
Forerunner Crystal, Truth's purpose, Brute overthrow
I have always been critical of bungie keeping Brutes as the main enemy in ODST, and completely disregarding the Elites. It would take days or even weeks time for the Brutes to have arrived, and to push the Elites out of Mombasa. But what if they were not shackled by the limits of time?
0645 hours (approx.), August 30, 2552 -- the Pillar of Autumn leaves Reach for Halo.
0100 hours (approx.), September 19, 2552 - the Pillar of Autumn arrives at Halo.
The time to travel from Reach to Halo was about 20 days.
In Halo: First Strike, we get out first hint at the Brutes replacing the Elites at the Prophets' side, when Tartarus brings Truth three shards of the time-dilating crystal, pieces of a fist-sized crystal housed under Reach which bent the time for the Master Chief (and thus the surrounding region on Halo)...
From Halo: First Strike (pg 339):
"Come closer, Tartarus, and report."
A ripple of shock passed through the Imperial Elite Protectors. They had never seen such a creature allowed so close to the Holy Ones.
"Protectors," the Prophet commanded. "Leave us."
Together the three hundred honor guards straightened, bowed, and filed out of the great chamber. Thy said nothing, but the Prophet saw the confusion on their features. Good -- such igno-rance and puzzlement had its uses.
...making the return trip to the human world last about 20 hours.
1827 hours, September 22, 2552 -- influenced by the crystal, the Ascendant Justice jumps away from Halo and toward Reach.
0520 hours (approx.), September 23, 2552 -- influenced by the crystal, the Ascendant Justice reaches Reach...
This can not be explained away simply because the Covenant were faster than us -- they weren't that much faster. It took a full 2 weeks (October 20 until November 2) to reach Delta Halo from Earth in Halo 2. The crystal altered space-time once. Why couldn't it happen again?
From Halo: First Strike (pg 340):
"It may yet be enough for our purposes... and one more relic from the Great Ones, as precious as they are, will soon make no difference to us." The Prophet tucked the container deep in the folds of his underrobe. "Make sure those pilots who survived are
well rewarded. Then execute them all. Quickly. Quietly."
This was the Prophet of Truth speaking with Tartarus, who had just presented him with the three shards of the time-dilating crystal.
What were the purposes that Truth was speaking about?
I think that the crystal may have been a large part of Truth's plan to replace the Elites with Brutes, especially since a Brute, Tartarus, was the only one allowed so close. The time-dilating effect would allow him to transfer the Brutes to replace the Elites literally everywhere within the Galaxy in a matter of hours to days; he may have employed a shard of the crystal to get his Brutes to Earth at almost the instant that Regret left.
This is the only possibility that I see, as otherwise it would have taken hours to days, maybe even weeks, to replace the Elites on Earth with Brutes, and the flashback missions in ODST would have included Elites rather than Brutes. It surely won't be a major plot-point in the game, but it could very well be Bungie's reasoning behind Truth's acquisition of the shards.