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RedStarRocket91 last won the day on June 17 2022

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    The Highlands
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    Halo, Writing, Acting, Drumming

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  3. Kinda miss talking to you. :-(

    1. RedStarRocket91


      Miss you too, Zelda. We'll have to have a game once I get my Xbox back :)

    2. Zelda


      My luck it'll be after I move and before I get new internet. Lol


    3. Zelda


      But there is Skype, which your never on. Lol

  4. Oh boy. How... how much detail are you wanting, exactly? I could write a lot on this.
  5. Truth told, I'm not really that fond of any of the Spartan-IVs. I'm sure a lot of that is down to not having read any of the books since Halo 4, but the ones in the games just aren't really that interesting. The only ones I can really name are Palmer, Thorne, and the members of Osiris. Palmer is pretty dull, and it doesn't help that she's so overpowered in cutscenes: the same applies to Osiris, who seem to make up for their general lack of personalities by showing off in the intro. The only two members of Osiris who really get any development at all are Locke and Buck. In the case of Locke, Nightfall was pretty unimpressive to begin with, and in Halo 5, he's as poorly written as everyone else. Buck has the advantage of having been in ODST, but again, come Halo 5 and he's a completely different character, reduced to wisecracking instead of actually showing off any trace of his personality in ODST. That only really leaves Thorne, and while he's certainly nice enough in a bland, 'designated hero' kind of way, he just doesn't really get enough screen time, or character development, for me to be invested in him as a character. So instead, I'm going to say that my favourite Spartan-IV is the leader of Fireteam Crimson, since he's a hell of a fighter without needing to resort to cutscene power, gets on with the mission without needing to open his mouth and snark constantly, and is surprisingly handsome beneath that helmet
  6. Yeah, I'm just re-reading my earlier reply now, and I think 'fortified' was probably a bad word to use there. Maybe 'defended' would have been better. Also, just wanted to say how much I enjoyed the question this week - it's been a while since I've had an excuse to go digging through the games for answers, and it's been a ton of fun trying to put all the pieces together!
  7. Absolutely, if they were attacked simultaneously and the UNSC had sent the majority of their ships back to Earth, I'd agree that Earth was better fortified. But, they weren't, and it didn't, so that's not the discussion we've been having. I'm comparing what was actually present to participate in each of those battles. If I can give you an analogy here: imagine two cities. One of them has bigger walls and more towers, so in that respect yes, it's more fortified. What I'm saying is, you need to account for the number of men who can actually defend those walls, too. ...I did, though? Almost the entirety of my second response is dedicated to looking at exactly that, and I came to the conclusion that the static defences aren't sufficient to make up for the reduced size of the fleet. To go back to the city analogy, once there's a hole in the walls and all the towers overlooking it have crumbled, what matters more in determining the outcome - the size of the walls and number of towers elsewhere, or the number of men who can actually defend that breach? It's the same with the orbital defence grid: in Halo 2 the UNSC has the advantage of massively outnumbering the Prophet of Regret's fleet, and effectively ambushing them, and yet within the first hour of the battle the local cluster has had two of its three stations destroyed and the Covenant have their breach in the walls, after which point all the other battlestations contribute nothing to the fight since the only thing which can actually respond to the Covenant's attacks in that area are the fleet, which is at least a third smaller than the one which was defeated at Reach.
  8. Well, are there any sources which actually say that Earth was more fortified? Again, working from what we know within the games: at least 60% of the total UNSC navy was present on Reach, according to Dot at the start of 'Long Night of Solace'. From the Arbiter's speech at the start of Halo 2, we also know that the Pillar of Autumn was the only ship to escape, meaning that humanity had, at most, 40% of their previous fleet present for the Battle of Earth. In other words, if the accounts from Reach and Halo 2 are accurate, then at least in terms of naval vessels there's no way Earth could have actually been more fortified than Reach. As for the orbital stations, I don't know what they're actually worth in terms of 'ships', but we can suppose two main things. The first, that a single station int sufficient to stop one of the Covenant's carriers, given that the Prophet of Regret's flagship is able to simply bypass Cairo Station during the mission of the same name. The second, that the orbital stations appear to be extremely vulnerable to boarding actions - of the three that we see boarded during the mission, two are successfully destroyed. The last one only barely repels its boarders in time, and that because there was a Spartan-II present - and there obviously aren't enough Spartan-IIs to defend the whole defence grid. It's never mentioned again after that as far as I remember, so I don't know whether the grid was destroyed or simply rendered ineffective once the Covenant had punched a hole in over East Africa, but in any case, it's difficult to rate its overall effectiveness as a substitute for the missing ships. All we know is that, in order for Earth to have been more fortified than Reach, the battlestations in its defence grid needed to be worth at least half as much as all of the ships which participated in the battle, plus whatever Reach had in terms of static defences. But wait! That presupposes that the entire defence grid can actually participate. The reality is, once the Covenant are beneath the defence grid, they can't actually do anything and Earth is reliant on its fleet, who as we've already established, cannot be larger than the number which defended Reach. Johnson mentions that Cairo Station co-ordinates fire with Athens and Malta stations while on the monorail ride at the start of Halo 2: assuming that the battlestations are arranged so that they work in clusters of three, that means just three battlestations together need to be as effective as half of the entire remaining human fleet in order to ensure the same level of fortification as Reach. While you could make the argument that the UNSC ships might fall back from cluster to cluster after each set's destruction, this hits another snag when you consider the Covenant concentrated their forces over East Africa, meaning that once the first cluster (or the first few clusters) had been cleared, they didn't need to bother attacking the rest, since the battlestations can't move to counterattack. But even assuming that the Covenant are incredibly bloody-minded and destroy the entire defence grid before settling in to excavate, they're still capable of destroying them very quickly via boarding actions, and can still fight them in small clusters rather than having to deal with the whole lot at once. So ultimately? Even if we assume that the 300 orbital platforms are collectively worth more than half of Earth's fleet, the UNSC is still less fortified than Reach by simple virtue of having fewer vessels with which to counter-attack and form any kind of strategy, and unless just one cluster is worth more than half the surviving UNSC fleet, then even if both fleets and the cluster all fought at once in practical terms the UNSC would be facing a fleet at least as large as the one which attacked Reach, with a smaller effective strength.
  9. Of course they could have. Just fire a Halo ring More seriously, no. It's stated somewhere that the UNSC needed to outnumber Covenant ships three to one in order to have even odds of victory, and after the fall of Reach, humanity didn't even come close to that. I'm going to be working off game canon here, since I'm not an expert on book lore, but here's my breakdown. Reach itself is perhaps the best example: it was the single most heavily fortified planet in the UNSC. By August 16th, it was being defended by at least 60% of the UNSC's fleet, assuming Dot's comments at the start of 'Long Night of Solace' were accurate, most of the surviving Spartan-IIs and Noble Team. From first contact at Visegrad Relay to the whole world being glassed after the Pillar of Autumn's escape took a little over a month. Now admittedly, Reach is supposed to have really taken a toll on the Covenant, but they still won it, and even if we work on the assumption that '60% of the UNSC fleet' represented the absolute total percentage of the UNSC's fleets ever present over Reach (rather than in addition to its own forces, which were probably worth at least a few percentage points by themselves), that still means humanity had a whole third less available to defend Earth than they had when they had failed to defend Reach. As for Earth? The defence that we saw throughout Halo 2 went okay, thanks to home turf, an ambush counterattack, and an extreme numerical advantage, but even then losses were bad, as within a few minutes of the opening battle two of the major orbital defence stations had been wiped out. But even with these advantages, two of the defence platforms are still destroyed, and this by a Covenant fleet which is one-fiftieth the size of the fleet which destroyed Reach. In ODST we see a much bigger fleet appear, and absolutely no signs of effective counter attack: by Halo 3, the UNSC has seemingly been reduced to operating out of abandoned surface bases, one of which falls to a single Covenant capital ship. Even the combined UNSC and Elite forces simply don't have enough strength to prevent the Covenant from opening the portal to the Ark. Now, let's crunch some numbers. At the start of 'The Ark', it's mentioned that the Covenant outnumber the Elites three to one. Now, if we assume that everything in that battle represents the absolute total number of remaining Covenant ships, and that a Brute-led ship is only one-third as effective as an Elite ship (i.e. about as effective as a human ship), then using our initial statement that the UNSC needed to outnumber Elite-led ships three-to-one in order to have a chance of victory, at the time of the battle above the Ark, the UNSC would have needed a ship for every Brute ship and three for each Elite vessel (a total of six to four) to have a chance of winning that fight. And that's not even considering that the Covenant fleet would have been vastly larger, since it wouldn't have had a sizeable chunk of its fleet destroyed during the schism. Next, consider that the Elite ships (i.e. a quarter of the potential Covenant hulls) were able to glass 'half a continent' within, at most, a few days, at the end of 'Floodgate'. Now even if we assume that Hood was exaggerating the scale of destruction, and that it indeed took a few days, the fact remains that the Covenant could have glassed Earth very quickly - from the first beam being fired in New Alexandria, it only took about a week to destroy Reach. The only reason they didn't do the same to Earth was because they were too busy digging out the portal to the Ark to bother. Lastly, it's mentioned that the fleet which destroyed Reach was 50 times the size of the one which initially attacked Earth, and I seem to remember that fleet lost about a third of its strength in the battle. So on top of everything else - even on Reach, the best defended human world in the galaxy, the UNSC lost 60% of its forces to the Covenant's (at worst) 40%. Assuming that Earth could do as well as Reach with a similar rate of attrition, and even assuming that the 'largest Covenant fleet anyone's ever seen' over Delta Halo both represented all of the Covenant's and was only one ship larger than the fleet which had attacked Reach, the UNSC's navy would be completely wiped out with more than half of the Covenant's own fleet remaining. Even if we assume that High Charity only accounted for just over the mass lost at Reach (which it clearly doesn't) and the rest of the fleet was only the 2/3 which had remained after that campaign, the rate of attrition would still comfortably tip into the Covenant's favour, since even allowing for High Charity being destroyed an an unfavourable engagement on Earth they'd still end the battle of Earth with about 30% of their initial forces intact. So to sum up: in order to defeat a unified Covenant, by the time of the battle over the portal to the Ark, humanity would have needed to outnumber the Covenant three to two in order to have a chance of winning, despite having already lost at least 60% of their forces, would have had to muster those forces about a third faster thank to the Covenant glassing a third faster, and that's on the assumption that the Covenant didn't bring the ships that would have otherwise been destroyed in the Great Schism anyway.
  10. Let's start with my biggest fear: that all we'll get is yet another incredibly barebones splinter faction of the Covenant, and the Prometheans. Elites will just be regular rifle-wielders, with the only variant being a version with a better rifle and more shields, Grunts will be pure fodder, and Hunters will be how they were in Halo 5. At least this means we'd hopefully have another full set of Jackals. The Prometheans would be pretty much as they were in Halo 5 - teleporting bullet sponges with homing weapons which completely kill all mobility and force the player into a dull cover-shooter style. But let's go for something more hopeful. The title is Infinite, after all, which I'm hoping means we're going to get to shoot basically everything in the Halo universe. So to start with, let's list all of the known factions, and then work back from there, in rough order of appearance; the UNSC, the Covenant, the Flood, the Prometheans, the Banished, and the Created. We can also reasonably throw in the Insurgency, even though they haven't appeared in the games. Also, on reflection, I'm coming back and adding this to a spoiler for the sake of thread length! Anyway, that's my incredibly-long take on what I'd most love to see in Infinite: nothing less than the biggest, baddest, most diverse roster of enemies to date!
  11. I'm confident we'll be seeing more of Blue Team, if only because they've been introduced to the game canon at this point and so it'd be weird if we didn't have them. That said, I'm not so sure if they're going to be playable. I suspect that Infinite is still going to have a heavy focus on multiplayer throughout the campaign, and if that's the case, I'm sure that at least one of them will be in the team. But whether we're going to see the full Blue Team, or some combination of Chief and other Spartans, I'm not so certain of. I hope I'm wrong on this, as co-op being the default state for the campaign is a really bad idea, but given some of 343i's responses to criticism of Halo 5, and just the name of Infinite itself, I suspect that it's still going to be something designed around four player co-op. Now, just to be clear: while I strongly disliked the way they were handled in Halo 5, I actually think Blue Team could add something worthwhile to the games in the hands of a remotely competent writer, and really enrich them in the hands of a good one. A big part of the reason I was so frustrated by them in Halo 5 was that they were there purely to act as stand-ins for actual human players, and so if they have to do the same in Infinite, I'd far rather that they're at least fully fleshed-out characters while doing so.
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