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Which Halo Difficulty is Canon?

OP Riprollonect13

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Which Halo Difficulty is Canon?

Make Your Selection:


Hello Halo fans,

I've heard arguments for each Halo difficulty being canon, and I am curious to see what Halo fans on Waypoint think on this topic. I haven't watched the videos, but I hear that Generalkidd believes the official difficulty is Easy, and he presents a decent argument as to why. The Act Man says it is Legendary, and several Halo games say that Heroic "is the way Halo was meant to be played." However, I think it is Normal.

Why? Boot up The Master Chief Collection and go to the cross-game playlists, and you will see that "The Master Chief Saga" is set at the Normal difficulty. I cannot see how that can be interpreted in any way other than the Master Chief saga actually occurring on the Normal difficulty. To address the description for Heroic difficulty, I think that the description means that Heroic is the difficulty which best fits with the skill level of the majority of Halo players. In other words, this difficulty provides the most challenging and satisfying difficulty for most Halo players without the frustrations of the Legendary difficulty.

What do you think? Please vote and if you would like, explain your reasoning below. This should be interesting.
Yeah normal seems about right for actual cannon.
Yeah normal seems about right for actual cannon.
I agree
I say it's a game by game basis, possibly even by level.

If I had to give each FPS game a canon difficulty it would be this. (taking the Expanded Universe into context)

Halo: CE - Legendary
Halo 2 - Heroic
Halo 3 - Heroic
Halo 3: ODST - Legendary
Halo: Reach - Heroic
Halo 4 - Heroic
Halo 5 - Heroic

Just my personal opinions. I think Heroic is a good base as it's a challenge, but nothing overly hard considering you're a super soldier Spartan-II (Spartan-III in Reach) and your fighting ability and armor is above snuff.
For ODST you're a normal human footsoldier, not a Spartan-II or III, so you'd be a lot weaker to everything, which is why I put legendary.
With Halo: CE Legendary wasn't as hard as later games would make it, so I'd say it's about as brutal as The Fall of Reach novel described fighting the Covenant.
If I think of any other reasons I'll post them below.

One thing we can all likely agree on is that Halo 2's Legendary isn't canon, sniper jackals and plasma burns aside. *sarcasm*
Edit: Actually, after reading through some commentary from fellow lore enthusiasts it seems there is no difficulty that can really be defined as canon. Retracting my earlier statement
Spoiler:
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I say it's a game by game basis, possibly even by level.

If I had to give each FPS game a canon difficulty it would be this. (taking the Expanded Universe into context)

Halo: CE - Legendary
Halo 2 - Heroic
Halo 3 - Heroic
Halo 3: ODST - Legendary
Halo: Reach - Heroic
Halo 4 - Heroic
Halo 5 - Heroic

Just my personal opinions. I think Heroic is a good base as it's a challenge, but nothing overly hard considering you're a super soldier Spartan-II (Spartan-III in Reach) and your fighting ability and armor is above snuff.
For ODST you're a normal human footsoldier, not a Spartan-II or III, so you'd be a lot weaker to everything, which is why I put legendary.
With Halo: CE Legendary wasn't as hard as later games would make it, so I'd say it's about as brutal as The Fall of Reach novel described fighting the Covenant.
If I think of any other reasons I'll post them below.

One thing we can all likely agree on is that Halo 2's Legendary isn't canon, sniper jackals and plasma burns aside. *sarcasm*
I think halo reach would be on legendary as in that game humanity is losing badly and lost reach
I'm going with heroic because of the description in h3 and reach- "Fight against formidable foes that will truly test your skill and wits; this is the way Halo is meant to be played."
and h4- "Fight against foes that will truly test your skill - this is the way Halo is meant to be played!"
seeing as how the description for heroic is "the way it's meant to be played" I just assume that's the cannon difficulty.
I’d say heroic since you’re supposed to be a hero and hero is the key word of ‘heroic’
I think all the halo games have their own canon difficulty like in halo reach the difficult would be legendary as in the game noble team gets destroyed by the covenant they take over reach and towards the end you try to help civilians evacuate and the unsc while I feel like halo 2 would be in like normal difficulty as in the beginning of the game we are told that master cheif’s new armor is very strong but halo 2 legendary doesn’t reflect that at all
there's actually a video on youtube by either Mythic tyrant or lukethenotable talking about this, they say it varies from game to game
The way Halo was meant to be played...Heroic!
There has been a lot of debate about this topic. Luke TheNotable has a very good video on YouTube breaking down the different arguments. The short version is that it is difficult to pin down a specific difficulty that accurately represents Halo lore across all of the games, but it is generally accepted that Heroic offers the most consistently accurate experience to canon.
I have seen Luke TheNotable's video, and I see his arguments, but I honestly do not think the Master Chief could have survived several decades of war against Insurrectionists and the Covenant on Heroic difficulty. Sure, he has the skill, but there are some things like getting sniped by Sniper Jackals on Halo 2 Legendary where skill doesn't always save you. At one point, Chief would have died, or Noble Six would have died, or Keyes would have died in The Truth and Reconciliation, or something where maybe you end up in some unlucky circumstance. At least on Normal you have some chance.

By the way, nobody else has said anything about the The Master Chief Saga playlist being set to Normal difficulty.
Heroic/Legendary depends though
I have seen Luke TheNotable's video, and I see his arguments, but I honestly do not think the Master Chief could have survived several decades of war against Insurrectionists and the Covenant on Heroic difficulty. Sure, he has the skill, but there are some things like getting sniped by Sniper Jackals on Halo 2 Legendary where skill doesn't always save you. At one point, Chief would have died, or Noble Six would have died, or Keyes would have died in The Truth and Reconciliation, or something where maybe you end up in some unlucky circumstance. At least on Normal you have some chance.

By the way, nobody else has said anything about the The Master Chief Saga playlist being set to Normal difficulty.
As I said, I do not believe that there is a solid right or wrong answer. The lore is not always consistent with regards to difficulty. In Halo Escalation Scruggs seemed to be playing on Easy when he took Lord Hood hostage, yet there are instances in the lore where one plasma rifle bolt is enough to kill a marine, which is more consistent with Legendary.

As for the Master Chief Saga going to Normal as the default difficulty, I think that there are a number of potential explanations for this. The first is that the game simply selects Normal as the default difficulty because it is, by definition, the normal difficulty for the game. This line of reasoning reminds me of the argument that the canon difficulty is Easy because Halo: The Flood mentions a shotgun (that only spawns on Easy) near the crashed Pelican at the start of 343 Guilty Spark.

The alternative explanation is that you are right and the canon difficulty for the Master Chief Saga is Normal. This would actually make sense given how skilled The Chief is, and the feats we see him perform throughout the games.
Heroic, simply because of its description. It's how Halo is meant to be played!
I’d say heroic since you’re supposed to be a hero and hero is the key word of ‘heroic’
Agreed
Heroic is the way Halo was meant to be played.
I'm thinking normal...beyond that you move into epic mode and some levels can become frustrating at heroic and legendary. You want everyone to be able to be canon.
I'd say Heroic overall, thougn Reach, ODST maybe Legendary.

The point about Chief and luck stands.
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