343 Industries confirms Halo Infinite’s setting, and Halo nerds can rejoice
If you are a Halo nerd—and by that I mean someone who realizes that the Halo universe is a rich, narrative tapestry—then you will be happy to hear that 343 Industries is tapping into the series’ history and lore for Halo Infinite‘s setting.
In an interview with GamesRadar (via GameSpot), 343 studio head Chris Lee confirmed that, yes, Halo Infinite is set on Zeta Halo, the last surviving ring of the Forerunner’s original 12 rings and prominently featured in the Forerunner Trilogy novels. That’s some extended universe stuff, nerds. That’s from the books! Get pumped.
Halo nerds everywhere might have been worried by recent comments made by 343 developers that Infinite is a “spiritual reboot” of the series, but they can now rest assured that even a game meant to bring new players to the franchise will surely contain subtle context clues hinting at deeper narrative subtext that filthy casuals would never pick up on.
Surely, Infinite was already off to a good start in giving hardcore fans of the extended Halo-verse something to hold above their casual counterparts’ heads in casting War Chief Escharum as the main villain. Escharum, of course, leads the Banished, the Covenant splinter faction that features heavily in the less popular but still narratively relevant Halo Wars spin-off.
Furthermore, this could hint at new villains that may have yet to be revealed. As you assuredly know, being Halo nerds who spend their days and nights staring lovingly at their framed Master Chief posters, the Forerunners used human test subjects on Zeta Halo to research a cure for the Flood. Perhaps there will be remnants of these experiments found in the darkest corners of the ring, given that Master Chief can explore Infinite‘s more open-world environment. Obviously, if you haven’t read the novels (or looked it up on a wiki), this kind of deep context would be completely lost on you, but it would be nice to see 343 giving a nod to Zeta’s complicated legacy.
Halo nerds and filthy casuals alike will be able to experience Halo Infinite, though with differing levels of enjoyment and appreciation, this holiday season when it launches for Xbox One, Xbox Series X, and PC.