Latin Species Name:
Monachus frigus
Technology level:
Native Tier 6/Adopted Tier 2
Avg. Height Range:
4ft 6.5in–5ft 7in (138.4–167cm)
Avg. Weight Range:
248.3–260.1lbs (112.6–118kg)


Unggoy, nicknamed Grunts by humans, are squat, xeno-arthropodal bipeds who presumably evolved from smaller amphibious primates. Distinct from many other bipeds, Unggoy hind legs are quite short, adapted more for clambering and crawling over rocky terrain rather than walking upright. Their disproportionately large arms are excellent for grappling and scaling, but often impede movements through narrow corridors or attempts to manipulate small, delicate objects. To deter Balaho's voracious predators, a rigid exoskeleton lined with barbs and spikes covers large portions of their backs, arms, and legs. The Unggoy’s elongated cranium ends in a blunt, bony face, with low-set eyes and a small, straight-toothed mouth. Although many consider this species inherently unintelligent, such assertions are almost certainly an artifact of the Covenant leadership relegating the Unggoy to menial labor and cannon fodder roles. In truth, many Unggoy have proven to be remarkably intelligent, knowledgeable, and resourceful.

Unggoy Rebellion

The most remarkable event in Unggoy history is their rebellion against the Covenant in 2462 CE. In the years just before the rebellion, the Kig-Yar were forced to share habitation with the Unggoy in High Charity’s lower quarters. When Unggoy inadvertently trampled several Kig-Yar nests in the overcrowded warrens, the Kig-Yar seized an opportunity to stifle Unggoy population growth. A cabal of Kig-Yar sabotaged a series of Unggoy recreational infusion dispensers that resulted in the sterilization of a large portion of High Charity's male population--an event referred to as the ‘Infusion Incident.’

When San’Shyuum leaders failed to address the festering conflict, it became a full-blown revolt. The viciousness and surprising bravery of the Unggoy eventually required the application the Covenant’s full military strength and the creation of an Arbiter to put the uprising down. The Arbiter was forced to end the conflict by initiating a limiting razing of Balaho, effectively threatening to exterminate the entire species. When the razing began, the Unggoy quickly abandoned the fight, unwilling to sacrifice their homeworld. The revolt proved to the Sangheili that the Unggoy were more than mere laborers and could be incorporated into the military in meaningful ways. Despite their tragic losses, the rebellion forever changed the Unggoy’s path.

Covenant Roles

When the Covenant came upon vulnerable Balaho in 2142 CE, the Unggoy were aggressively converted and forced into servitude. Though their status increased after the Unggoy Rebellion, they were still considered the lowest caste in the Covenant hierarchy. They served as the first wave of infantry in ground campaigns, deploying in large numbers to undertake a variety of dangerous operational roles. After the end of the Human-Covenant War, many stayed indentured to their Jiralhanae or Sangheili commanders while others fled back to their homeworld.

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