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Does anyone really understand the Halo universe?

OP DecafLemon37

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Chimera30 wrote:
JV11077 wrote:
Chimera30 wrote:
KCD0DGER wrote:
Oh I understand the pre-343i universe just fine because it had set rules.
I feel similarly.
I understood Bungie's Halo pretty well because some things were purposefully shrouded in mystery (origins of the Flood, identity of the Forerunners), and I was able to accept that. Hell, I preferred it.
Same here. I miss the Flood's origins being a mystery. The precursor corrupted space dust that infected dog like pets which eventually turned into the flood really makes it hard for me to take the flood serious anymore. That's such a lame origin. Would have better if the flood was the precursors big middle finger to the forerunners or something. Anything but evil space dust....
I preferred the Flood as simply a mysterious organism simply following its instinct to grow and survive, which just happened to be at the expense of all other life. The addition of "evil" into their origins takes away their charm as an enemy, because fighting the Flood wasn't so cut and dry as good vs evil, but rather a scenario of survival of the fittest. But now the shades of grey are gone, and the Flood has been retconned into typical evil villain territory.
Yeah, I think any moral ambiguity with the Flood goes out the window pretty much after the Gravemind speaks and it's not longer just a parasite doing what parasites do. Had the Flood been a purely parasitic organism just acting on instinct, it'd be akin to the Bugs vs humanity in the Starship Troopers novel, neither really hates the other but both want the same real estate. But, again, when the Gravemind enters the picture that is gone. Yet that's hardly anything new on 343's part.
I disagree. I don't think Bungie's idea of the Gravemind was inherently evil. Manipulative, sure. Ruthless, yeah. But everything the Gravemind did in Halos 2 and 3 was for the sake of, again, the growth and survival of the Flood. It wasn't for revenge. The Gravemind as Bungie created it was like ST's Brain Bug; it absorbed its enemies knowledge so that it would be better able spread throughout the universe, because that's what the Bugs needed to do. It was instinct. So to with the Gravemind; instinct was the driving factor leading it to do some rather terrible things (torture Cortana, betray Arby & The Chief).
The Flood's current origins and purpose/goals in new on 343i's part, because now they are established as a species created specifically from the wrathful, insane remains of a scorned parent seeking to destroy and corrupt everything their children have created. They turned the Flood into a creature born from the desire of vengeance. I guess it comes down to that, really; the intent behind something's actions. You wouldn't call Cordyceps evil for infecting ants, nor would you if a species of Cordyceps evolved naturally to infect humans. But if someone created a version of the fungus that could infect humans in a particularly gruesome and painful way, then that version, born of malice, could be classified as evil.
Just to get this strait the Gravemind is the head leader of the the flood? Additionally Gravemind is like part AI and like part that ancient creature that somehow survived the destruction of the Halo weapon right? Additionally the AI got corrupt when it probed through the mind of the ancient creature then eventually the creature died from age and all it information it had went to the AI which was now head of the flood and together they tried to destroy the Forerunners
Chimera30 wrote:
Chimera30 wrote:
JV11077 wrote:
Chimera30 wrote:
KCD0DGER wrote:
Oh I understand the pre-343i universe just fine because it had set rules.
I feel similarly.
I understood Bungie's Halo pretty well because some things were purposefully shrouded in mystery (origins of the Flood, identity of the Forerunners), and I was able to accept that. Hell, I preferred it.
Same here. I miss the Flood's origins being a mystery. The precursor corrupted space dust that infected dog like pets which eventually turned into the flood really makes it hard for me to take the flood serious anymore. That's such a lame origin. Would have better if the flood was the precursors big middle finger to the forerunners or something. Anything but evil space dust....
I preferred the Flood as simply a mysterious organism simply following its instinct to grow and survive, which just happened to be at the expense of all other life. The addition of "evil" into their origins takes away their charm as an enemy, because fighting the Flood wasn't so cut and dry as good vs evil, but rather a scenario of survival of the fittest. But now the shades of grey are gone, and the Flood has been retconned into typical evil villain territory.
Yeah, I think any moral ambiguity with the Flood goes out the window pretty much after the Gravemind speaks and it's not longer just a parasite doing what parasites do. Had the Flood been a purely parasitic organism just acting on instinct, it'd be akin to the Bugs vs humanity in the Starship Troopers novel, neither really hates the other but both want the same real estate. But, again, when the Gravemind enters the picture that is gone. Yet that's hardly anything new on 343's part.
I disagree. I don't think Bungie's idea of the Gravemind was inherently evil. Manipulative, sure. Ruthless, yeah. But everything the Gravemind did in Halos 2 and 3 was for the sake of, again, the growth and survival of the Flood. It wasn't for revenge. The Gravemind as Bungie created it was like ST's Brain Bug; it absorbed its enemies knowledge so that it would be better able spread throughout the universe, because that's what the Bugs needed to do. It was instinct. So to with the Gravemind; instinct was the driving factor leading it to do some rather terrible things (torture Cortana, betray Arby & The Chief).
The Flood's current origins and purpose/goals in new on 343i's part, because now they are established as a species created specifically from the wrathful, insane remains of a scorned parent seeking to destroy and corrupt everything their children have created. They turned the Flood into a creature born from the desire of vengeance. I guess it comes down to that, really; the intent behind something's actions. You wouldn't call Cordyceps evil for infecting ants, nor would you if a species of Cordyceps evolved naturally to infect humans. But if someone created a version of the fungus that could infect humans in a particularly gruesome and painful way, then that version, born of malice, could be classified as evil.
Honestly, I don't see the strictly survival ensuring purpose behind the sentience of the Gravemind. I mean, when it says, "Arrogant creatures! Your deaths will be instantaneous, while we shall suffer the progress of infinitude!" I don't think you can say the Gravemind is just trying to ensure the survival of its species and is driven by instinct.
well i guess no one can fully understand Halo lore for there seems to be some contradictions and when you get deeper into the lore, the more gaps you discover between events. It might never get ready. And lots of the lore is just varying theories so theres that too.
Don't worry, OP, I am still pretty confused and overwhelmed by a lot of lore added over the years. I think that 343i made everything overly-complicated by trying to explain everything. As other people here have stated, I preferred the days when the Forerunners and the Flood were a mystery. It added to the feeling of the game. But then you get the Didact alive in the flesh in Halo 4 and, despite that game having a good story, his physical existence really ruined not only the game but also Halo lore for me.

But, to answer your question, OP...yes, the Forerunners are stronger, smarter, and more scientifically and technologically advanced than humans. However, even if they can create and destroy whatever they want, it obviously comes at a price, for we have the Flood and the Halo rings (and the Forerunner's apparent self-destruction. "Apparent", because of the Didact and other Forerunners still being alive. Took all of the "doom and gloom" of the Halos away. Why worry about firing that big gun if you can prepare by hiding away in a Shield World or the Ark? No fear.).
I've spent the last 2 years immersing myself in the lore, reading my way thru the books (I am obsessive compulsive and read very very slowly, that's why it's taking so long), and at this point I've now read most of the major ones... and I still feel like a complete and total lore nub around here. I can give you the Intro to Halo 101 background on the Precursors, the Flood, the Forerunners, etc. but I still don't feel like I truly understand everyone's real motivations or what the hell their endgame is.

(Granted, it doesn't help that 343 themselves don't truly know where it's going at the moment, either.)

I agree with the side conversation that's going on, I feel like I understand Bungie's universe a little better, if you limit to only their work. It was simpler. It added a different dynamic when the Flood actually became "demonic" rather than simply a mindless parasite. Although I'm not sure when that truly began. One could argue it began with Bear and the Forerunner trilogy, but then we have the Gravemind's maniacal laughter in Halo 3, too.
Just to get this strait the Gravemind is the head leader of the the flood? Additionally Gravemind is like part AI and like part that ancient creature that somehow survived the destruction of the Halo weapon right? Additionally the AI got corrupt when it probed through the mind of the ancient creature then eventually the creature died from age and all it information it had went to the AI which was now head of the flood and together they tried to destroy the Forerunners
The Gravemind is the head of the Flood, yes. When the Flood accumulates enough biomass, which increases its intelligence as it grows, eventually it will collect enough and become intelligent enough to form a Gravemind which will act as a central leader for all Flood in its range. There is a Flood state beyond even the Gravemind, called Keyminds, which happen when the Flood encompasses and consumes an entire planet, but the Flood in the Halo games never got to that point.

As a related side-note, you can see this process in action in Halo 1, where the Flood attempts to begin the formation of a Gravemind aboard the Truth and Reconciliation with a proto-Gravemind, using Captain Keyes.

As to the other part, you're confusing the Gravemind with Mendicant Bias a little. The Gravemind and the AI are separate. Mendicant Bias was a highly advanced Forerunner AI, but he was turned against the Forerunners and convinced to work with the Flood. The creature that Mendicant Bias spoke with lived as part of the Flood consciousness until the Halos were fired.

You can look up Gravemind, the Primodrial, Mendicant Bias, and "logic plague" on Halopedia for more specific information.
I've spent the last 2 years immersing myself in the lore, reading my way thru the books (I am obsessive compulsive and read very very slowly, that's why it's taking so long), and at this point I've now read most of the major ones... and I still feel like a complete and total lore nub around here. I can give you the Intro to Halo 101 background on the Precursors, the Flood, the Forerunners, etc. but I still don't feel like I truly understand everyone's real motivations or what the hell their endgame is.

(Granted, it doesn't help that 343 themselves don't truly know where it's going at the moment, either.)

I agree with the side conversation that's going on, I feel like I understand Bungie's universe a little better, if you limit to only their work. It was simpler. It added a different dynamic when the Flood actually became "demonic" rather than simply a mindless parasite. Although I'm not sure when that truly began. One could argue it began with Bear and the Forerunner trilogy, but then we have the Gravemind's maniacal laughter in Halo 3, too.
I definitely won't say that I think 343i's take on the Halo story is "better", as I do prefer Bungie's in many (maybe most) ways. But I disagree that the Flood is any more demonic now than it was, or that its dynamic has significantly changed in the long run (we'll see if that changes in the future; 343i's take on the Flood will really depend how they appear in the games).

The Flood stopped being a mindless parasite in Halo 2, the moment we meet the Gravemind. Whether the Gravemind is its own evil entity with no backstory beyond being part of the Flood, or whether it's a manifestation of a more ancient intelligence (the tainted Precursors, the Primordial), doesn't really change anything to me. Bungie's Gravemind is still the same Gravemind to me, even with everything written in the Forerunner saga.

The Flood was always supposed to represent an evil, malevolent force in the universe. The biblical references in Halo are too numerous for the Flood antagonist to ever have been simply a morally neutral parasite from a story perspective. They were always "demonic" even without the centralized villain of the Gravemind. Like you said (and I agree, in a good way), Bungie's storytelling was simpler. The zombie parasites which were trying to eat the universe were evil, just that simple.
In basic. precursors made humans and forerunner. Forerunners attack and beat precursors, They turn into the flood. Humans attack the forerunners which lasted 1,000 years. taking a heavy lose failed to fight the flood. built HALO rings saved as much species as they could and fired the rings. killing all life. then the forerunners died out.
So i was ready the book Halo Mythos and man is that book complicated and i am only on page 38! Between those 38 pages their has spanned like a million years!!! From the precursors until they made the forerunner who later wanted to attack their creators who where supposedly "god like" and somehow they were defeated. Then the the Mater Builder builds the Halo rings that i guess has the power to pretty much destroy all life in the universe....(quick question can it destory all life in the universe or in a galaxy because their is a big difference) additionally the Diadict who i think on were i am is like 300,000 years old copses (turns people into raw data) like a hundred thousand people...like man that is a big number/ a lot of people. ECT ECT.. insane amount of information.. My conclusion questions are the following: Are the forerunners like just incredibly powerful beings? like a million times more powerful than a human...because that is what it looks like in the book... Additionally i just want to know if anyone really understands the Halo universe? To me it seems like i would have to read the book like 5 times to finally understand everything
I understand it, but it's taken years of enjoying it to do so. Probably used a fair amount of my memory-capacity on it, too. Now, though, I understand it really well. I could talk for hours and hours about everything from major stuff to tiny little details like tiny little architectural details and what they're there for.
So i was ready the book Halo Mythos and man is that book complicated and i am only on page 38! Between those 38 pages their has spanned like a million years!!! From the precursors until they made the forerunner who later wanted to attack their creators who where supposedly "god like" and somehow they were defeated. Then the the Mater Builder builds the Halo rings that i guess has the power to pretty much destroy all life in the universe....(quick question can it destory all life in the universe or in a galaxy because their is a big difference) additionally the Diadict who i think on were i am is like 300,000 years old copses (turns people into raw data) like a hundred thousand people...like man that is a big number/ a lot of people. ECT ECT.. insane amount of information.. My conclusion questions are the following: Are the forerunners like just incredibly powerful beings? like a million times more powerful than a human...because that is what it looks like in the book... Additionally i just want to know if anyone really understands the Halo universe? To me it seems like i would have to read the book like 5 times to finally understand everything
I understand it, but it's taken years of enjoying it to do so. Probably used a fair amount of my memory-capacity on it, too. Now, though, I understand it really well. I could talk for hours and hours about everything from major stuff to tiny little details like tiny little architectural details and what they're there for.
That's cool that you know all of that but let me ask you this: Did the Forerunners make the humans or did the precursors? One last question: Exactly what year did the humans get the technology for their ships to go into slip space?
Do you guys think it would be cool if 343 made like a game that ask players about the lore of Halo? it would be pretty hard i suspect
Forerunners are just a really advanced alien race.

As far as the rings go each one can destroy a section of a galaxy, that is why there are several of them. Think of it like pouring water on a big floor. One bucket wont get the whole room wet so you would need many. In short, no the Halo rings do not destroy the entire universe.

For someone who understands Halos story and can explain it in detail I reccomend going on youtube and checking out Hiddenxperia or Halocanon.
Do you guys think it would be cool if 343 made like a game that ask players about the lore of Halo? it would be pretty hard i suspect
I think that would be interesting. I wouldn't see them just making a game for that, though. So maybe they would frame it in some point-of-reference like some sort of archive or something.
On the topic of the origin of the Flood, while it is hugely cliched, I would have preferred if it kept with the implied origin of Bungie-era Halo, that the Flood were created by the Forerunners who wanted to become gods and create life and it got out of hand and roflstomped them.
On the topic of the origin of the Flood, while it is hugely cliched, I would have preferred if it kept with the implied origin of Bungie-era Halo, that the Flood were created by the Forerunners who wanted to become gods and create life and it got out of hand and roflstomped them.
Yeah, that would have made the Flood more fearsome than they already are. We know that the Flood did have a hand in the Forerunners' decline and (almost) destruction, as it was the reason for them firing the Halos. But, well...in a weird way, now that I think about it, the Forerunners (and ancient Humans, San'Shyuum and whoever else) are partly responsible for the Flood. They used that "space dust" (as people like to call it) to bring out desirable traits in their dog-like pets, and then it got out of control and infected other races.

No matter what, though, I find the "canon" explanation for the Flood to be a bit too strange and mundane for my tastes, even if it makes it more in line with all of the hundreds of zombie stories we already have.
On the topic of the origin of the Flood, while it is hugely cliched, I would have preferred if it kept with the implied origin of Bungie-era Halo, that the Flood were created by the Forerunners who wanted to become gods and create life and it got out of hand and roflstomped them.
Therrs no hint of that at all. H3 terminals and beastiarium imply they are an outside force.
On the topic of the origin of the Flood, while it is hugely cliched, I would have preferred if it kept with the implied origin of Bungie-era Halo, that the Flood were created by the Forerunners who wanted to become gods and create life and it got out of hand and roflstomped them.
Therrs no hint of that at all. H3 terminals and beastiarium imply they are an outside force.
It was the leading theory among the community.

P.S. *There's*
Chimera30 wrote:
JV11077 wrote:
Chimera30 wrote:
KCD0DGER wrote:
Oh I understand the pre-343i universe just fine because it had set rules.
I feel similarly.
I understood Bungie's Halo pretty well because some things were purposefully shrouded in mystery (origins of the Flood, identity of the Forerunners), and I was able to accept that. Hell, I preferred it.
Same here. I miss the Flood's origins being a mystery. The precursor corrupted space dust that infected dog like pets which eventually turned into the flood really makes it hard for me to take the flood serious anymore. That's such a lame origin. Would have better if the flood was the precursors big middle finger to the forerunners or something. Anything but evil space dust....
I preferred the Flood as simply a mysterious organism simply following its instinct to grow and survive, which just happened to be at the expense of all other life. The addition of "evil" into their origins takes away their charm as an enemy, because fighting the Flood wasn't so cut and dry as good vs evil, but rather a scenario of survival of the fittest. But now the shades of grey are gone, and the Flood has been retconned into typical evil villain territory.
When wasn't flood evil??? Its evil in its purest form, sure you cannot say that about the covenant because they are religious zealots fooled by a superior species to be martyrs for a foolish cause, you have to feel sorry for species like the grunts who have been enslaved by the prophets. However, an organism that hostilly takesover another species, morphing them and making them forget who they originally were? Thats not evil? It was desribed as a parasite and all it can do as a parasite is spread and infect, it isnt evolution or natural selection, it is a parasite whose only goal is to continue to feed. Now that's evil. That doesn't mean there is a clear good vs evil in halo though. Humanity is the most morally questionable of all, are we good or evil? We captured 6 year olds and augmented then from something that is almost not human, they are walking sociopaths that follow orders without question almost in human. We also have ONI a secret military police that black bags and orders assassinations on people who dont agree with military rule. I think you should consider that. That is mostly 343 era where humans arent just the ultimate good, and aliens and insurrectionists are bad, in 343 era insurrectionists have a good reason to hate earth, and many civilians are scared of oni, just look at Hunt the Truth for that.
Ultimately, i think your point is basic and unfounded, just casual unconstructive 343 hating.
Chimera30 wrote:
JV11077 wrote:
Chimera30 wrote:
KCD0DGER wrote:
Oh I understand the pre-343i universe just fine because it had set rules.
I feel similarly.
I understood Bungie's Halo pretty well because some things were purposefully shrouded in mystery (origins of the Flood, identity of the Forerunners), and I was able to accept that. Hell, I preferred it.
Same here. I miss the Flood's origins being a mystery. The precursor corrupted space dust that infected dog like pets which eventually turned into the flood really makes it hard for me to take the flood serious anymore. That's such a lame origin. Would have better if the flood was the precursors big middle finger to the forerunners or something. Anything but evil space dust....
I preferred the Flood as simply a mysterious organism simply following its instinct to grow and survive, which just happened to be at the expense of all other life. The addition of "evil" into their origins takes away their charm as an enemy, because fighting the Flood wasn't so cut and dry as good vs evil, but rather a scenario of survival of the fittest. But now the shades of grey are gone, and the Flood has been retconned into typical evil villain territory.
When wasn't flood evil??? Its evil in its purest form, sure you cannot say that about the covenant because they are religious zealots fooled by a superior species to be martyrs for a foolish cause, you have to feel sorry for species like the grunts who have been enslaved by the prophets. However, an organism that hostilly takesover another species, morphing them and making them forget who they originally were? Thats not evil? It was desribed as a parasite and all it can do as a parasite is spread and infect, it isnt evolution or natural selection, it is a parasite whose only goal is to continue to feed. Now that's evil. That doesn't mean there is a clear good vs evil in halo though. Humanity is the most morally questionable of all, are we good or evil? We captured 6 year olds and augmented then from something that is almost not human, they are walking sociopaths that follow orders without question almost in human. We also have ONI a secret military police that black bags and orders assassinations on people who dont agree with military rule. I think you should consider that. That is mostly 343 era where humans arent just the ultimate good, and aliens and insurrectionists are bad, in 343 era insurrectionists have a good reason to hate earth, and many civilians are scared of oni, just look at Hunt the Truth for that.
Ultimately, i think your point is basic and unfounded, just casual unconstructive 343 hating.
Parasites, viruses, and other such organisms are not inherently evil. They are merely organisms whose functions happen to be at the expense of other creatures. They don't do what they do with malicious intent; it is simply the way they survive. It absolutely is evolution that determined how these organisms function. In fact, the constructs of good and evil are purely human creations; before humanity, there was no concept of good or evil, there was only survival. And every organism did what it had to do in order to survive, even if that meant killing another organism. Of course, we as humans hate the idea of disease and sickness, viruses and parasites, because they endanger us and scare us. So it is easy for some to label such things as evil. But they aren't evil, their just existing the way evolution led them to exist.
Now with the Flood being a fictional organism, or course you could introduce human constructs such as good and evil into them. And with the Flood being capable of conscious thought, it then becomes capable of performing actions that go beyond just simply feeding and growing. But rather than just simply call the Flood as Bungie made them "evil", I prefer to think a little more critically and see past the fear the Flood naturally instills. And sure, certain moments in Halo 2-3, the Gravemind showed angry and vindictive behavior, and even relished in attempting to destroy Arby and the Chief. But we as humans get angry and vindictive all the time; you don't call someone evil just because they express anger. Even murder has been classically justified in both fiction and ancient history when it was done righteously, like in cases of punishment or retribution. The Flood as Bungie made it wasn't evil inherently, despite all the death it caused. It didn't go to war with the Forerunners out of revenge (as Bungie made them). And its anger at the Covenant and Humans was due to them threatening its very existence. It did some shady things, even malicious things, but it wasn't inherently evil. It didn't hate the creatures it was absorbing.

343i introduced inherent evil into the Flood by crafting their backstory. What before was just an extremely dangerous organism just following instinct became a biological force created from the hated-filled, crazy remains of a scorned alien race seeking vengeance on their creations. Which means 343i put into the Flood an inherent hate towards the Forerunners that seemingly turned into a hatred for all life. So now the Flood has been retconned in a way that it's actions go beyond instinct, in which case you can now begin to call it "evil" in the truest sense.
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