Halo 4 - An exercise in failure?

I've beaten halo 4 twice now (on normal and heroic) and i noticed something interesting about the plot. is it just me, or does the entire plot revolve the protagonists essentially failing every mission until the final conflict? and even then i don't consider it a huge success (see below).

the first one i noticed right away. it's on the first level, when the planet opens up and starts sucking you in. of course when that happened, my first instinct was to run and leap off the spaceship exterior towards the planet (and my death), because that's what kind of player i am. but look at it this way: your mission is to get to an escape pod, and escape the gravity well. what happens? you get halfway there, and you get sucked into the planet, anyway.

the second time through the game i skipped most of the cinema sequences, but the repeated failure to perform was evident throughout the entire plot of the game. from what i can remember, here is a basic overline of key plot details and how the protagonists fail their missions:

MISSION: get to escape pod to escape gravity sucker FAIL: you get halfway there before getting sucked into the well anyway
MISSION: disable tractor beams to send a signal to the infinity FAIL: you disable the beams but the transmission still does not get through
MISSION: get to a signal relay thing to send signal to infinity FAIL: instead of sending a signal, you release dido the sloth
MISSION: destroy the plasma cannons defending the gravity well FAIL: some pelican flies too close and gets exploded requiring you to retrive the equipment on foot
MISSION: convince the crew of the infinity to help stop dido the sloth FAIL: cortana flips out screaming (i could dedicate a whole section to that idiot)
MISSION: shut down... things... in two towers to allow you to get close to dido's ship FAIL: it doesn't work
MISSION: go to a 3rd tower and rearrange towers to keep dido's ship from leaving FAIL: cortana strait up fails to do it
MISISON: land your covenant ship at the space station to alert and assist the crew FAIL: whoops! cortana can't land a ship
MISSION: get a nuke from the doctor and blow up the "weapon" or whatever it is FAIL: "the nuke's not ready yet! it has to be slow cooked or something!"
MISSION: infiltrate the ship and drop the nuke FAIL: instead of launching the nuke, they crash their ship and he has to hand-carry the nuke
MISSION: stop dido before he launches his weapon FAIL: uhhhh according to the epilogue it appears that an entier futuristic mega-city has been decimated so... millions dead. but hey success-ish, right?

i mean i know that the failures and tribulations of a protagonist are important for building dramatic tension in a story, but when you look back at the plot line of halo 4 it seems like a LOOOOOT of failures, most of which could have been prevented by ugrading to cortana 2.0. seriously, she is single handedly responsible for a LOT of these failures in basic performance. seriously, the deaths of everyone in that mega-city are on her shoulders. but when you think about it, she's not a person she's a computer program. so it all falls back on master C and his decision to keep using outdated, faulty software that continues to fail to perform basic tasks competantly...


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Last updated July 3, 2018 Views 0 Applies to:

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I don't get it.


Is this a hate thread for Cortana? Utterly pointless.


So many plot failures in your post. (pun intended)

First of all. it's DIDACT, not "dido". It's not that hard, really. Second, the OP clearly does not understand the lore of the Halo universe. That was made pretty clear when he said "could have been avoided by upgrading to Cortana 2.0". Wow.


And using "faulty, outdated software" was not Master Chief's choice.. Did you even play Halo 3? Did you miss the part where Master Chief was stuck in a cryotube on a half destroyed Cruiser for over 4 years? Please explain to me how he was supposed to get a software upgrade under those circumstances. And even WITH that, Cortana is by far the most innovative and advanced piece of software known to mankind, even whilst going rampant.


Speaking of which, in the beginning of the mission "Requiem" after first crashing down to the planet (in the ship graveyard), there is a computer which you can listen to a Dr. Halsey journal entry about Cortana. She explains that Cortana has developed something on her own (I forget what, might've been some personality trait) and that she can't fathom how it developed out of nowhere. She believes that Cortana may be an exception to the 7 year expiration date of AIs.


And about the plot, this is kind of the basis of most games. There needs to be failure so that there can me triumph. If Master Chief was successful in finding an escape pod in mission 1, the rest of the game doesn't happen. And that's completely illogical. There were also plenty of successful pieces of the campaign as well which you didn't bother to highlight.

-Destroying a Covie cruiser with a half decimated ship?

-Manually enabling Infinity's MAC guns to fend of the Didact?

-Defending the space station from an onslaught of Covies?



Sure, the ends of the missions brought "failure", if you can even call it that. But as I said earlier, how could the missions possibly progressed had something not gone wrong?

[quote user="ill Neal"]

I've beaten halo 4 twice now (on normal and heroic)

[/quote]thats the prob right there-everyone knows you jump in legendary with both feet right off the bat-understanding only comes to those willing to work for it

I won't bash your post because I understand what you're trying to say. This series has always been about failure to an extent.  Remember everything that you try to defeat is more advanced/powerful than you are.  Halo should never be played at any level lower than Heroic.

i'm being facetious when i call him "dido" (like the '90s pop singer). i was also being facetious in the post. just a funny observation i made while playing the game.

yeah i get that the cheif was stranded in the ship after halo 3 and couldn't have upgraded at that time, BUT! what about the part when he's on the infinity and the commander is like "i want that AI destroyed!" well you know what? he has a good point. instead, you take the faulty, soon-to-expire AI with you and she continues to fail at her tasks and put your life at risk. also i would like to point out that these failures to lead to the death of millions of people in futuristic mega city at the end of the game! can't forget that!! (it's really not a happy ending)

i look at it like this: cortana is your beloved car yo'uve had since you were 16 with 200,000 miles on it. sure it's a little outdated and starting to fray, but it's YOUR car and you are sentimentally attached to it, so you continue to drive it while everyone makes fun of you. but when that car with 200,000 miles on it starts to put your life at risk by having wheels fall off or have the brakes give out at high speeds... well maybe it's time to get rid of that death trap, you know? cortana almost kills you multiple times because she just isn't paying attention.

no i get that there need to be dramatic trials and tribulations for the story arc, but it just seems like a lot of the plot of halo 4 revolves around people... faililng. yes there are "successes" but they seem to only make up for the fact that somebody pooped the bed in the previous chapter! for instance, enabling the weaponry on the exterior of the infinity to ward off the covenant and dido (sticking with it!). yes! that was a success! but if you had contacted the infinity like you were supposed to, you wouldn't be in that situation in the first place. and maybe by that point, dido wouldn't have been released in the first place...

i do have a hard time to suspend disbelief in certain games. not disbelief that there is an alien space war raging on, but disbelief that the military is so incompetant. (why do the weapon systems on the mammoth tank and infinity require a handheld targeting device?!?! that is so ridiculous!)

and about legendary... hah yeah good point. but i like to play normal then hard then legendary, then super hard (hard w/ skulls) to increase the replay value of the game. this one is kind of tough though i'm almost not looking forward to going through on legendary.

Didio haha take care, maybe the DIDACT hear you ;)

"foolish creature, can´t you see your nature?" somebody said ones :D

It doesn't matter how facetious you were being, you're still demonstrating that you don't understand the story. The car analogy is actually pretty accurate since one of the main story points was about sentimentality and how the Chief was trying to battle to save Cortana as well as humanity. But the rest of your post shows your lack of understanding in the story.


For one, the Didact was released by ACCIDENT. They even say in the game that he tricked MC into releasing him. There were never any contact relays inside the planet. You were on an unknown, undiscovered planet which was completely unfamiliar to humans (which means Cortana didn't know anything about it either). She gathered information when she was first put in the system in the mission Requiem, but couldn't exactly interpret it all. Hence why she was tricked into believing that shutting down power cores would break interference and allow MC to contact Infinity. When they got to the area where they thought the "contact relay" was (it was actually Didact's cryptum), him putting his hands on it activated the release sequence for the Didact. He WANTED to be released. Master Chief and Cortana THOUGHT it was a means of contacting Infinity. They didn't know that an ancient, super powerful Forerunner was going to be released out of nowhere. That was the entire point of that level. There was NO way to contact Infinity, it was basically a charade put on by the Didact so that he could be released. This is why the Covenant were so determined to get to the Cryptum too. They knew he was in there, the humans didn't.


So, tl;dr, that wasn't a failure in any sense of the word. As far as military systems go, don't forget, this is still humans we're talking about. Our technology is advanced, but not flawless. Using a target designator is the only way to acquire a target for a weapon not being operated by someone.

"why do the weapon systems on the mammoth tank and infinity require a handheld targeting device?!?! that is so ridiculous!".


This is about the only thing I agreed with.

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