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The Halo Story

Resources - Facts and Pertinent Clues

Halo, originally announced in 1999 and certainly pondered for even longer, is a story a complexity and depth, but by no means one which has remained consistent at all points of its development. Contained here are links to various sources, both early and conventional, which provide clues and hints as to just what the heck is going on. Many of the early sources have since become rather antequated, and while not necessarily canon material, do provide keen insight into the overal shape of things that are, and things that are yet to come.

You will also find here links to interviews, pages, and summaries that contain verified Bungie staff quotes yielding or implying important aspects of the story, as well as other founts of bemusement.



First, A Disclaimer

Official Sources

The Halo Story is not an entirely phantom, nebulous thing, undefined and endlessly (or pointlessly) speculated upon. It exists. It is a realized Story, an epic tale of rich history, detailed characters, and complex subplots. Crafted originally in the fevered imagination of Jason Jones, honed by the fine artists and programmers of Bungie, and expanded by some of the fine folks in Microsoft's Franchise Development Group, it is a Story which beckons us to unravel its mysteries. These are the official Story sources.

The Games - The starting point for our obsession

  • Halo for Xbox, PC, and Macintosh
  • Halo 2 for Xbox, Windows Vista
  • Halo 2 Limited Edition insert: "Conversations from the Universe"
  • Halo 3 for Xbox 360
  • Halo 3: ODST for Xbox 360

The Novels - Expanding and detailing the Halo universe, these are all authorized by Bungie and, though we can see more and more of a divergence between many aspects of the novels and the games (the info Cortana saw in Halo 04, the remaining Spartans, etc.), they are considered "official" source material.

  • Halo: The Fall Of Reach - The first of the Halo novels, it tells the story of John, SPARTAN 117, from his first meeting with Dr. Halsey up until the events immediately prior to those in the game.
  • Halo: The Flood - Retells the events of Halo: Combat Evolved, but don't let that fool you! There are a lot of things happening on Halo 04, and our in-game perspective is only one piece of the puzzle. (HSP writeup)
  • Halo: First Strike - "Meanwhile, back at Reach"... and connects Halo: Combat Evolved with Halo 2. As well, it fills in gaps in the Halo 2 story line (with a few flashbacks thrown in for good measure). With the introduction of time/space manipulation, things get messy.
  • Halo: Ghosts of Onyx - Eric Nylund returns with a magnificent side-story detailing the most secret of secret black ops project Section Three has ever initiated: The Spartan-III Program.
  • Halo: Contact Harvest - Joseph Staten of Bungie tells the story of the first Human-Covenant encounter that took place on Harvest in 2525. As the UNSC launches skirmishes against rebels in the Outer Colonies, humanity is forced to deal with a much larger threat: annihilation by an alliance of alien races.
  • Halo: The Cole Protocol - The sixth novel in the Halo series, this time written by Tobias S. Buckell. The story details a much anticipated aspect of the Halo universe: The whereabouts of Spartan-II Grey Team. The novel is due to release in November of 2008.
  • The Halo Graphic Novel: Amazing. Find out more here.
  • The Halo Graphic Novel Preview Booklet: A glimpse at the art within, coupled with brief statements of purpose for each vignette.
  • Halo: Uprising - A four-issue series of comic books released by Marvel. The comics bridge the gap between Halo 2 and Halo 3, depicting much of the Master Chief's adventures on the Forerunner Dreadnought as it heads for Earth. The series also contains a new story as the Covenant learn about the existence of a certain "Key of Osanalan".
  • Halo: Helljumpers - A five-issue comic book tie-in to Halo 3: ODST.
  • Halo: Spartan Black - A four-part comic series detailing the mission of Spartan-II Black Team.

Halo PC Strategy Guide Story Bible Excerpts - Hah. You think it's that easy? That we'd just give actual passages from the Halo Story Bible away? No, you'll have to get hold of the Strategy Guide yourself for these tantalizing tidbits.

I Love Bees - An online ARG (Alternate Reality Game) created by 4orty2wo Entertainment for Microsoft, with original input from Bungie. This started on the seemingly innocuous "I Love Bees" website, and grew to involve a number of characters and locations from the Halo universe. The site now has much of the material from the game (sound files, transcripts, etc.) available on it. Alternately, Wikipedia has a page devoted to the game and its workings. (You'll also find a few other resources listed here.)

It should be pointed out here that, while the content of the game came originally from the Halo universe, none of it is exactly canon, as far as our perspective goes (see here for at least one justification). That aside, it's definitely well-thought out and creative, and worth the time.

H2 Manual - A top secret message from Cortana to the UNSC synopsizing the events of H1

Conversations... - A booklet of dialogues from within the Halo universe, included with the Halo 2 Limited Edition. We had received on odd transmission shortly after the release of the game, which we believed to be related to the booklet. This is the result of our best efforts at recovering the information it contained.

The Covenant "Ages" - Trimmed from H2 but included in the Making Of DVD, these plaques document the formation and history of the Covenant.

Early Warnings

In the beginning, there was an idea, a concept, that drove the development of Halo from a programmer's amusement into a grand tale of galactic conflict. What morsels of public knowledge that were given out back then are assembled here.

Quoted References

Occasionally (and we mean occasionally, really) elements from the Halo Story get tossed into the public realm through interviews and quotes. There are obviously other references out there, but these should serve to highlight the more significant details. Many of these links lead to news items either here or on the HBO front page. You may wish to go and read the original interviews, however, to better understand the subjects mentioned.

Further Investigations

As we move in a never-ending quest for complete understanding of the Halo Story, here are some resources to assist us on our way.