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Do you think the Master Chief is Halo or not?


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#1 Caboose The Ace

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Posted 11 May 2017 - 03:38 AM

The question kinda says it all, do you think the Master Chief is Halo or is Halo is much more broader than just him at the centre and is not just about him? Let me know. :)


Edited by Caboose The Ace, 11 May 2017 - 03:40 AM.

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#2 RedStarRocket91

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Posted 11 May 2017 - 07:33 AM

I'd say no. Master Chief is always going to be a huge part of the Halo universe, and the moment he's written out of it (death, retirement, etc.) I'm going to lose a lot of interest in it because I'm pretty heavily invested in his character and story, but he's not the only thing that matters.

 

Halo 3: ODST showed nearly ten years ago (which is more than half the series' life by now!) that it's possible to have an outstanding Halo game without any mention of the Chief by having a cast of characters who're both well-written and well-acted. Combined with good level design, some interesting gameplay choices, and a very different soundtrack, we ended up with a game that still feels very 'Halo' and has arguably one of the best campaigns to date, even without its main character.

 

Reach I feel much more conflicted about. Partially that's because there were a lot of gameplay changes made that I didn't like, and partially it's because it mucked with existing canon and I'm not a fan of that at all. But it wasn't helped by Noble Team's weakness as characters, especially as by 2010 we were seeing the rise of things like Mass Effect and Bad Company, even Gears of War, who were setting new standards about what you should expect from characters in squad-based shooters, and which therefore made Noble Team look even weaker in contrast. That said, there's still some very good parts to the campaign: Six themselves does the silent protagonist thing well enough, and Jorge in particular is fantastic, especially throughout cutscenes where he just has a ton of character.

 

I guess what I'm saying is, ultimately when there've been problems with Halo games when playing as people other than the Chief, it's generally been because the other characters have been badly-written, rather than just because they aren't the Chief. I don't dislike Osiris just because it means less playtime as John: I dislike them because it means more playtime as badly-written and underdeveloped characters whose story, as a result, I just don't really care about. If they'd been done properly, given some actual personality and depth and even had some internal conflict, they'd have been infinitely better and possibly even likeable. So while it's going to take a very, very good writer to pull the game out of the mess of Halo 5, and I think Osiris should just be ditched completely in favour of some new, better successor characters, I do think the potential is there for Halo to successfully outlive the Chief.


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#3 Melody

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Posted 11 May 2017 - 12:08 PM

Let me just point out that Halo isn't truly Halo without Master Chief linked in somewhere. Now with that being said granted, I loved ODST. Despite no involvement with the Master Chief the game was so different in itself that it gave a new perspective on the Halo universe. ODST's faced great hardship with the fall of New Mombasa, which is a memorable moment that I won't forget. Also as Red pointed out, I feel as though ODST had one of the most well written stories in the Halo franchise.

 

Now, of course the Master Chief is absolutely the core existence of Halo so with that being said he's basically the life-blood of the entire series. However, one day the Chief will either die or retire and when that comes I hope they don't replace him with a lame spartan like Locke or Buck.

 

With all that being said, Halo will continue to expand and grow, with or without the Master Chief.


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#4 Twinreaper

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Posted 14 May 2017 - 11:05 PM

I'm just gonna chime in real quick (like quick is ever a word associated with my posts) and give my view on the question.

 

Halo has never been about one particular character.  Halo has always and "should" always be about the characters.  Throughout the entire franchise there has never been a shortage of characters to develop and in fuller detail, learn to love/hate.  The driving force of Halo is one of how the characters interact with one another and how they as a whole drive the story.  Now don't get the wrong idea here, story is the most important feature of any game, but without the characters to populate that story, you don't have much. That being said, Chief is Halo, or rather, Spartans are Halo.

 

Lately as of Halo 4, I feel as if they have destroyed the past of John and his commrades.  Follow me if you will....

 

Halo CE: Master Chief is introduced as a "Last of his kind" super soldier with a pretty much blank slate in terms of dialog, feelings and expereince.  His character allowed players to inject themselves into his role, and as we did the story unfolded.  Because of this blank character we got to experience the story from a unique perspective.  Far more unique than what players of this new generation are expereincing.

 

Halo 2: Chief is once again standing against the Covenant as a "last defense" soldier.  He has built some character, and has been defined through his past title to be somewhat of a "bad-***".  Leaping back into the role of Chief feels natural to us now.  We know what is to come, and the story is driven by Chief's growing personality.  At this point, Chief even has established a solid reputation in the galaxy as a "Demon".

 

Halo 3:  A final culmination of growing through the series.  Dialog, personality and even faults are shown on all ends, tying all the characters together and creating some serious drama within a game for the first time (for me anyway) since FF7 where Sephiroth kills Aeris. At the end we feel the lonliness Chief feels as being a last Spartan soldier with no purpose, as he drifts into cryo sleep.

 

This is where everything falls apart.  Starting with Halo 4, Chief may have been the main character, but he slowly becomes overshadowed by "new Spartans".  That's right......everything you loved about the original trilogy...GONE.  Chief isn't special anymore.  What is even more puke inducing, is the way they present the Spartans.  It marginalizes and diminishes anything Chief is, was and or could be.  They look silly, act childish, and are all around just not very "Spartan-ish"  Jumping into Halo 4 makes you feel lost.  It takes away that feeling of self-injection into the narrative.  And to make matters worse, we are told that everything we did in the past, was all by someone else's design and pre-destined to occur.  Talk about a slap in the face to the players who actually grew with Chief and invested into the series.

 

Dissapointing story aside, we have a cast of characters who do really nothing to drive the story.  The presence of Infinity, Del Reo or even Lasky, don't drive the story forward.  Sure you could argue that infinity being there helped move the story forward in allowing Didact to escape.  But did he really need Infinity to do that?  Logic says no since Didact pulled Chief into the Shield World without even knowing that Infinity was going to come.

 

My point is, the development of the characters were not there.  There interactions and story building only stalled the campaign and made it feel unessessarily longer than it needed to be.  The only part they got right, was the ending.  The final scene between Cortana and Chief felt natural.  The acting was truly perfection.  teh way they talked to eachother felt as if it really was 2 characters just talking to eachother and expressing an "intangile love" for one another.

 

Halo 5 comes along adn basically puts even more complete craptacular Spartan stuff in our laps.  now suddenly Chief and his team look even lamer due to the fact that any old soldier can strap on this aluminum thin wrap suit, and march through a battlefield like a complete bad-***.  At this point, they have completely lost any meaning in what a Spartan used to be.  Now anyone cna be a Spartan?  Where is the character development?  Where is the true story telling?  Forcing premature characters on us, forcing a story to progress with tons of plot holes and unbelieveable scenarios unfolding?  Nathon Fillards acting is the only thing good about Halo 5.

 

Let's be honest about one more thing.  No one seems to fear the new Spartans.  I haven't heard one dialog bit detailing how frightened or edgy enemies get when encountering the player.  In Halo 4, even the Covenant don't call him demon in battle.  They are unafraid, as if to say that Spartans have become a bad joke.

 

So in the end, I guess what one could say is that Halo is not Chief, Chief is not Halo.  Halo is us.


Edited by Twinreaper, 14 May 2017 - 11:09 PM.

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#5 Melody

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Posted 17 May 2017 - 01:28 PM

I'm just gonna chime in real quick (like quick is ever a word associated with my posts) and give my view on the question.

 

Halo has never been about one particular character.  Halo has always and "should" always be about the characters.  Throughout the entire franchise there has never been a shortage of characters to develop and in fuller detail, learn to love/hate.  The driving force of Halo is one of how the characters interact with one another and how they as a whole drive the story.  Now don't get the wrong idea here, story is the most important feature of any game, but without the characters to populate that story, you don't have much. That being said, Chief is Halo, or rather, Spartans are Halo.

 

Lately as of Halo 4, I feel as if they have destroyed the past of John and his commrades.  Follow me if you will....

 

Halo CE: Master Chief is introduced as a "Last of his kind" super soldier with a pretty much blank slate in terms of dialog, feelings and expereince.  His character allowed players to inject themselves into his role, and as we did the story unfolded.  Because of this blank character we got to experience the story from a unique perspective.  Far more unique than what players of this new generation are expereincing.

 

Halo 2: Chief is once again standing against the Covenant as a "last defense" soldier.  He has built some character, and has been defined through his past title to be somewhat of a "bad-***".  Leaping back into the role of Chief feels natural to us now.  We know what is to come, and the story is driven by Chief's growing personality.  At this point, Chief even has established a solid reputation in the galaxy as a "Demon".

 

Halo 3:  A final culmination of growing through the series.  Dialog, personality and even faults are shown on all ends, tying all the characters together and creating some serious drama within a game for the first time (for me anyway) since FF7 where Sephiroth kills Aeris. At the end we feel the lonliness Chief feels as being a last Spartan soldier with no purpose, as he drifts into cryo sleep.

 

This is where everything falls apart.  Starting with Halo 4, Chief may have been the main character, but he slowly becomes overshadowed by "new Spartans".  That's right......everything you loved about the original trilogy...GONE.  Chief isn't special anymore.  What is even more puke inducing, is the way they present the Spartans.  It marginalizes and diminishes anything Chief is, was and or could be.  They look silly, act childish, and are all around just not very "Spartan-ish"  Jumping into Halo 4 makes you feel lost.  It takes away that feeling of self-injection into the narrative.  And to make matters worse, we are told that everything we did in the past, was all by someone else's design and pre-destined to occur.  Talk about a slap in the face to the players who actually grew with Chief and invested into the series.

 

Dissapointing story aside, we have a cast of characters who do really nothing to drive the story.  The presence of Infinity, Del Reo or even Lasky, don't drive the story forward.  Sure you could argue that infinity being there helped move the story forward in allowing Didact to escape.  But did he really need Infinity to do that?  Logic says no since Didact pulled Chief into the Shield World without even knowing that Infinity was going to come.

 

My point is, the development of the characters were not there.  There interactions and story building only stalled the campaign and made it feel unessessarily longer than it needed to be.  The only part they got right, was the ending.  The final scene between Cortana and Chief felt natural.  The acting was truly perfection.  teh way they talked to eachother felt as if it really was 2 characters just talking to eachother and expressing an "intangile love" for one another.

 

Halo 5 comes along adn basically puts even more complete craptacular Spartan stuff in our laps.  now suddenly Chief and his team look even lamer due to the fact that any old soldier can strap on this aluminum thin wrap suit, and march through a battlefield like a complete bad-***.  At this point, they have completely lost any meaning in what a Spartan used to be.  Now anyone cna be a Spartan?  Where is the character development?  Where is the true story telling?  Forcing premature characters on us, forcing a story to progress with tons of plot holes and unbelieveable scenarios unfolding?  Nathon Fillards acting is the only thing good about Halo 5.

 

Let's be honest about one more thing.  No one seems to fear the new Spartans.  I haven't heard one dialog bit detailing how frightened or edgy enemies get when encountering the player.  In Halo 4, even the Covenant don't call him demon in battle.  They are unafraid, as if to say that Spartans have become a bad joke.

 

So in the end, I guess what one could say is that Halo is not Chief, Chief is not Halo.  Halo is us.

I dunno Twin, you do make a valid point but I love Master Chief and if 343 killed him off I probably (likely) wouldn't play anymore. You could say Halo is the community, sure. But what about us that love and enjoy campaigns?

 

I just agree and disagree is all. Don't feel like writing a book so I'll leave it at that.


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#6 KhevaKins

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Posted 18 May 2017 - 05:05 AM

I think Master Chief is the central focus of the Halo main storyline, the main numbered games, and with the exception of him eventually dying I think the numbered sequels should always follow the Master Chiefs story.

 

That being said I don't think MC has to be present or involved in every Halo story. I loved ODST for its different depiction of the war and would love more games focused on other events in the Halo universe, pre war, innie war, post war, you name it.


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