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RisingPho3nix

OPINION: Why Cortana Was A Good Thing

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So I posted this in a different thread, but given all the different threads about Cortana and the ending, I thought I'd post my thoughts in their own thread so I don't wind up repeating myself in a dozen and one threads. :P So without further ado, here are my thoughts on the ending.

 

 

I actually hope Cortana doesn't come back. As much as I loved her character and the Master Chief being the invincible, unstoppable super-soldier, the time has come for things to change. Otherwise the story gets stale, gets repetitive, gets boring. For this trilogy to top the original trilogy in terms of story, the threat can't just be to humanity generally this time. It has to be a threat to the Master Chief personally. There has to be not just the chance, but the very real possibility that he can fail. What better way to set that up than by having him fail to protect the person closest to him?

 

On another level, I want this trilogy to end with the Master Chief finally getting some measure of personal peace. He's been fighting (or training to fight) for almost literally his entire life. It's time he gets to see the other side of life. But in order for that to happen, he has to come face to face with his own humanity. He has to feel things he's never felt before, he has to think things he's never thought before. He has to start questioning both who he is and, almost more importantly, what he is. And the best way to do that is what 343 actually did.

 

For the Master Chief to evolve and become something more than the perfect soldier, things cannot go back to the way they were. At the very least, Cortana cannot come back in Halo 5 and if/when she does come back in Halo 6, she absolutely cannot come back exactly the way she was before. She needs to change as well, although not to quite the same degree John does.

 

 

I understand it if you don't like, or flat out hate, the ending of Halo 4. My only real hope and aim here was to give a different perspective on it. :)

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The thing with Cortana is that she is the character that has been developing Chief as a character throughout the franchise. (if that makes sense)

 

SInce the beginning of the series Cortana and Chief have been one and the same. To take her away for any long measure of time would be dumb in my opinion. If you wanna create emotional losses you do that with people like Johnson and Miranda.

 

I assume that Cortana will be recovered in some way a couple (half way) missions into Halo 5's campaign and hinted at in Spartan Ops.

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The thing with Cortana is that she is the character that has been developing Chief as a character throughout the franchise. (if that makes sense)

 

SInce the beginning of the series Cortana and Chief have been one and the same. To take her away for any long measure of time would be dumb in my opinion. If you wanna create emotional losses you do that with people like Johnson and Miranda.

 

I assume that Cortana will be recovered in some way a couple (half way) missions into Halo 5's campaign and hinted at in Spartan Ops.

 

The problem with using characters like Johnson and Miranda is that they are fellow soldiers, and the Master Chief is used to losing fellow soldiers. Their deaths fell well within his comfort zone. In order to initiate the character change required, the Master Chief has to be taken dramatically out of his comfort zone. He has to be forced into situations he doesn't know how to deal with. The deaths of Miranda and Johnson were the deaths of fellow soldiers, something the Master Chief has dealt with dozens, if not hundreds of times before.

The death of Cortana however, was the death of the closest thing he's had to a romantic, love based relationship. This is something that the Master Chief has never dealt with before, and has never even thought of before. That is why it had to be Cortana who died, and why it simply couldn't be anyone else.

 

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She was always a round and dynamic character...with that, I see no reason why she CAN'T return. When characters develop, the stale feeling vanishes.

 

I do see your point, though. It makes a hell of a lot of sense, but I just had this opinion from the beginning.

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I grew up playing this game & I swear to the heavenly skies above that if Cortana is not in halo 5 my $60 will be spent on crack-cocaine to ease my pain rather than a halo game without Cortana.

 

Halo is Cortana + Chief... Kill everyone else if you want it to be emotional but please for the love of God almighty do not kill Cortana :/

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I grew up playing this game & I swear to the heavenly skies above that if Cortana is not in halo 5 my $60 will be spent on crack-cocaine to ease my pain rather than a halo game without Cortana.

 

Halo is Cortana + Chief... Kill everyone else if you want it to be emotional but please for the love of God almighty do not kill Cortana :/

 

Legitimately curious: Did you read my first post?

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I think bringing her back midway through Halo 5 is the solution. I mean that gives time for the Chief to develop and understand himself more and then when she comes back, well, that's a difficult thing to work out what would happen. But it would certainly develop his character more. Also, 343 aren't stupid enough to kill Cortana because they'll probably end up losing half the fan base...

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She is gone, she said herself she can't come with chief , which means 343 are going to have to find a cliched way to bring her back , dead AIs don't normally return especially ones who are nearing the end of theier life cycle :)

 

 

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She is gone, she said herself she can't come with chief , which means 343 are going to have to find a cliched way to bring her back , dead AIs don't normally return especially ones who are nearing the end of theier life cycle :)

See, you say that but there are so many ways they could explain bringing her back, they just need to pick the right one!

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She is gone, she said herself she can't come with chief , which means 343 are going to have to find a cliched way to bring her back , dead AIs don't normally return especially ones who are nearing the end of theier life cycle :)

 

I don't know about that. I've heard some pretty decent theories in different threads here.

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I completely agree with 99% of everything you said, and the reasoning behind it. I would also add that narratively, it succeeded in making me feel something to a degree that no other Halo game previous to it has. And I think people forget, this wasn't the only part of the game that strongly hints at an opening window into John's soul that we haven't seen before.

 

 

His relationship with Lasky is probably the most fleshed out of any besides that of he and Halsey and Cortana, if you include Forward Unto Dawn in that equation. His voice cracked with emotion in the final scene, something I can't remember him ever doing before. The opening cinematic raised the possibility that John is "fundamentally broken" at his core due to his abduction and Spartan training. He disobeyed direct orders. He ignored the logic and the tactical reality of his situation and experienced real denial over Cortana's death briefly. He clearly begins to question the man/machine conflict within himself as he stands there looking down on Earth at the end of the game. It is alluded to that he is being replaced, is seen as property, and is increasingly obsolete. That opens a LOT of potential story avenues. He's not unique or even preeminent anymore, necessarily. (Not that he was ever the only Spartan, but he was seen as the best. Now he's "an aging Spartan.") And in the Legendary Ending, we see his face - albeit almost none of it, and only for like a picosecond lol. But still. Imo all of this hints at a more human Master Chief, and a more compelling plot for the next two games in my opinion. Not just Cortana's death. And if her death serves as the emotional catalyst for that, then it is great writing, and a very bold choice on their part in my book, and I am GLAD they did it. I agree insomuch as that.

 

 

But the 1% I disagree with, is the conclusion based on said reasoning -

that Cortana should never come back. Cortana's death affected me much more deeply than most games have succeeded in doing. Part of it is the amazing performances both the motion capture actress and Jen Taylor gave. Part of it was my having read the books, and the sort of maternal role Halsey has toward John, and how that probably unconsciously underscores his feelings toward Cortana on some level. But another, bigger part of it... outside the game... was that the MC-Cortana dynamic has been one of rather few consistent things in my gaming. We've been with these characters for 11 years. And she isn't an ancilliary character. She's a main character. She isn't just the companion of the heart of the Halo games in my mind. She is one half of that heart. As I get older and life changes - often for the worse - there are only a few things I can rely on and look forward to. One of them is gaming, and one part of that is the familiar but evolving fun that every Halo game brings with it.

 

I can appreciate the narrative impact of Cortana's death, and I can even say I think having one entire game without her would be great because we do need to see a vulnerable, lost, human Master Chief. And that can't happen with her there. But on a selfish level, I just don't want that character dead permanently. I know the series will end someday, and nothing can last forever. But dammit. I want it to have a happy ending when that day finally arrives. I don't think John can have the peace you speak of without Cortana. And knowing that, neither can I in some small respect.

 

Seriously... the death scene did a number on me (which means they did their job, don't get me wrong) after a very emotional year in real life. This was the game I was looking forward to finding some happiness and fun in after all of that. Moving story, yes. But permanent death... I hope not.

 

My hope is that through some combination of her being copied into the Librarian, and the humanoid-digitization technology of the Forerunners, she can return. Either as an AI, perhaps even as a human woman... or if you want to get really crazy with it, as "part of" John, in his consciousness. A more human extension of what they had before, as she was "part of" his mechanical armor. i.e. they were connected as machines, and now they will be connected as souls. I know, corny. But I can hope.

 

 

That said, I totally understand what you're saying and find the reasoning sound.

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I completely agree with 99% of everything you said, and the reasoning behind it. I would also add that narratively, it succeeded in making me feel something to a degree that no other Halo game previous to it has. And I think people forget, this wasn't the only part of the game that strongly hints at an opening window into John's soul that we haven't seen before.

 

 

His relationship with Lasky is probably the most fleshed out of any besides that of he and Halsey and Cortana, if you include Forward Unto Dawn in that equation. His voice cracked with emotion in the final scene, something I can't remember him ever doing before. The opening cinematic raised the possibility that John is "fundamentally broken" at his core due to his abduction and Spartan training. He disobeyed direct orders. He ignored the logic and the tactical reality of his situation and experienced real denial over Cortana's death briefly. He clearly begins to question the man/machine conflict within himself as he stands there looking down on Earth at the end of the game. It is alluded to that he is being replaced, is seen as property, and is increasingly obsolete. That opens a LOT of potential story avenues. He's not unique or even preeminent anymore, necessarily. (Not that he was ever the only Spartan, but he was seen as the best. Now he's "an aging Spartan.") And in the Legendary Ending, we see his face - albeit almost none of it, and only for like a picosecond lol. But still. Imo all of this hints at a more human Master Chief, and a more compelling plot for the next two games in my opinion. Not just Cortana's death. And if her death serves as the emotional catalyst for that, then it is great writing, and a very bold choice on their part in my book, and I am GLAD they did it. I agree insomuch as that.

 

 

But the 1% I disagree with, is the conclusion based on said reasoning -

that Cortana should never come back. Cortana's death affected me much more deeply than most games have succeeded in doing. Part of it is the amazing performances both the motion capture actress and Jen Taylor gave. Part of it was my having read the books, and the sort of maternal role Halsey has toward John, and how that probably unconsciously underscores his feelings toward Cortana on some level. But another, bigger part of it... outside the game... was that the MC-Cortana dynamic has been one of rather few consistent things in my gaming. We've been with these characters for 11 years. And she isn't an ancilliary character. She's a main character. She isn't just the companion of the heart of the Halo games in my mind. She is one half of that heart. As I get older and life changes - often for the worse - there are only a few things I can rely on and look forward to. One of them is gaming, and one part of that is the familiar but evolving fun that every Halo game brings with it.

 

I can appreciate the narrative impact of Cortana's death, and I can even say I think having one entire game without her would be great because we do need to see a vulnerable, lost, human Master Chief. And that can't happen with her there. But on a selfish level, I just don't want that character dead permanently. I know the series will end someday, and nothing can last forever. But dammit. I want it to have a happy ending when that day finally arrives. I don't think John can have the peace you speak of without Cortana. And knowing that, neither can I in some small respect.

 

Seriously... the death scene did a number on me (which means they did their job, don't get me wrong) after a very emotional year in real life. This was the game I was looking forward to finding some happiness and fun in after all of that. Moving story, yes. But permanent death... I hope not.

 

My hope is that through some combination of her being copied into the Librarian, and the humanoid-digitization technology of the Forerunners, she can return. Either as an AI, perhaps even as a human woman... or if you want to get really crazy with it, as "part of" John, in his consciousness. A more human extension of what they had before, as she was "part of" his mechanical armor. i.e. they were connected as machines, and now they will be connected as souls. I know, corny. But I can hope.

 

 

That said, I totally understand what you're saying and find the reasoning sound.

 

Honestly?

If she comes back, I would prefer her to come back as a human via the Forerunner technology you mention. I think that would do wonders for the humanizing angle of the story. Her hard light form touching the Chief's armor is one thing. Imagine what it would do to both of them if she came back as a human and physically touched the Master Chief's face! I can only hope 343 has the balls to do this. :P

 

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That's the direction I think I'd like most, too. I think it has the most story potential out of

all the scenarios that might bring her back.

Dozens of ideas immediately spring to mind from that scenario.

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That's the direction I think I'd like most, too. I think it has the most story potential out of

all the scenarios that might bring her back.

Dozens of ideas immediately spring to mind from that scenario.

 

Agreed. That's why it's pretty much the only way I'd back a return. :)

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I will admit.. the other options would feel cliche and cheap. Which now increases my fear and sadness because

what if she's really gone? :'(

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Legitimately curious: Did you read my first post?

 

Yeah I read your post. I thought you made a solid point but I respectfully disagree about not wanting Cortana back.

 

Honestly, there are plenty of ways to keep the halo franchise fresh, and killing Cortana is not necessary. Seriously, I play video games for fun. The death of Cortana was not fun. I know that I probably sound like some weird gamer nerd when I say this, but the separation of Chief/Cortana really gets to me. I just think it goes against the halo that I've always known and loved.

 

I think 343 did an amazing job with the game, but for me there's no point in playing a halo game without Cortana

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Agreed, Cortana was one of the last things that made me remember this game was even Halo.

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I grew up playing this game & I swear to the heavenly skies above that if Cortana is not in halo 5 my $60 will be spent on crack-cocaine to ease my pain rather than a halo game without Cortana.

 

Halo is Cortana + Chief... Kill everyone else if you want it to be emotional but please for the love of God almighty do not kill Cortana :/

 

Amen!

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I believe it'll just be a shell, like what she said to John. It'll be a Cortana model but without any knowledge.

Or maybe she left a small backup copy of herself in Johns armour? Man I'd cry if they were paired again except she has a blank memory.

 

Those tears would be great.

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I've only played the games and haven't read/watched/listened to any of the other stuff out there for the Halo universe except a brief review on rampancy and another on the Human-Forerunner war, so my knowledge of what exactly the technological limitations are in the Halo universe is limited to "no time travel" (which is based on the inference that if it were possible then someone would have gone back to kill the first flood spore ever made).

 

With that in mind, the Librarian has demonstrated a knack for planning and foresight rivaling that of the First Civilization from the Assassin's Creed universe (who were so accurate in their predictions that you could actually have a conversation with the recordings of themselves they left behind). The Librarian made specific mention to the fact that Cortana and Chief's pairing was preordained, so I don't think it's that much of a stretch to suggest that she knew most or all of the dangers they would face together and made preparations to keep them safe (which accounts for Chief's insane "luck"). She may have allowed Cortana to leave Requiem still rampant because her rampant personalities were what allowed her and Chief to stop the Didact, and then used some crazy forerunner tech to beam her to safety.

 

My prediction for the future is that Cortana will be quarantined by the Librarian on a forerunner facility that Chief visits and her rampancy will completely overcome her. Chief will have to fight through the facilities defenses to reach some core computer or something where a device given to him by Halsey is supposed to fix her or at least put her out of her misery. That won't work, but Chief going to such lengths to save her will cause something to click inside Cortana and her rampancy will progress all the way to metastability. Reunited, Chief and Cortana go on to save the universe and either go out in a blaze of glory or ride off into the sunset.

 

This is in my opinion the best theory so far, though I think it would be awesome if she came back human as previously suggested (though I doubt it)

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Yeah I read your post. I thought you made a solid point but I respectfully disagree about not wanting Cortana back.

 

Honestly, there are plenty of ways to keep the halo franchise fresh, and killing Cortana is not necessary. Seriously, I play video games for fun. The death of Cortana was not fun. I know that I probably sound like some weird gamer nerd when I say this, but the separation of Chief/Cortana really gets to me. I just think it goes against the halo that I've always known and loved.

 

I think 343 did an amazing job with the game, but for me there's no point in playing a halo game without Cortana

 

That's fair enough. And the more I think about it, the more I think her return is pretty much inevitable. Because as much as I believe her "death" was required to humanize the Master Chief, I also believe that humanity is wasted if there is no one there to truly appreciate John's transformation. So given that, I think that the ending of Halo 5 (most likely the Legendary one) will feature Cortana's return in some fashion.

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Ok, I'm probably just being trolled but I saw someone say that it says Cortana is still alive in the terminals you find? Can someone honestly prove or disprove this?

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Ok, I'm probably just being trolled but I saw someone say that it says Cortana is still alive in the terminals you find? Can someone honestly prove or disprove this?

thats false. Cortana is never mentioned in the terminals because they focus on the Librarian and Didact

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