Sunday, November 20, 2011

Halo: Glasslands Review


The Halo franchise has been around for over 10 years now and its core fiction is pretty fleshed out. The dynamics of the cultures and factions are very well established and generally speaking, people know what to expect when two opposing parties cross one another. Apparently, someone forgot to tell Karen Traviss this important little fact.

Halo: Glasslands is the first full novel set directly after the events of Halo 3, and it predominantly follows a special team created by the Office of Naval Intelligence who's sole purpose is to sow dissension and civil strife between the Elites. While the Elites and humanity technically have an alliance of sorts, Admiral Parangosky, the director of ONI, doesn't believe it will last or that the Arbiter will be able to keep control of his people. Already dissident Elite factions are springing up and ONI wants to see Elites fighting Elites as opposed to starting a war with humanity once again.

Now this is all well and good and without question the core story concept of Halo: Glasslands is solid. Reading about a highly skilled black ops team doing its thing is rather interesting and something not seen too often in the Halo franchise, and the story also broadens by continuing the tale of Dr. Halsey and the last few Spartans now trapped in a Dyson's Sphere in the remains of Onyx, as read at the end of the 2006 novel Halo: Ghosts of Onyx. That story arc grows larger and larger as the novel goes on and eventually intersects with the main plot.

All of this is well and good and is a solid formula for a wonderful tale of Halo-themed military sci-fi, but the final product is, sadly, lackluster. Why? How could Traviss, the master of character building and deep, military plots have dropped the ball? Because she got the dynamics of the characters and cultures all wrong.

Let me ask you something: When you think of Elites and Brutes, what's the first thing that comes to mind? Assuming you've been paying attention to the overall Halo story since 2004, you know they hate one another and now that the Covenant has fallen they want to wipe each other out. After the Prophets betrayed the Elites and used the Brutes to try and exterminate them, the Elites themselves have been on a campaign to purge the Brutes from the galaxy. According to Kevin Grace's short, "The Return" (featured in Halo: Evolutions - Essential Tales of the Halo Universe) this campaign has been on-going for about seven years after the events of Halo 3.

Well Halo: Glasslands is set during the end of 2552 and leads into early 2553, and apparently there are some packs of Brutes loyal to Elites. Does that make any sense to you? Nope, I didn't think so. In fact when I first read this, since Traviss uses the actual Covenant species names instead of their human given names, I thought they meant another Covenant species and this was a typo but no, there are some packs of Brutes loyal to Elites. Not only that, but since Elites are so important to this novel's core story we see Sanghelios in detail for the first time, and not only are there loyal Brutes on the planet but some of them are actually landscapers.

Yes, you read correctly: Brute gardeners. What's next? Brutes amicably living alongside humans on a human world? Oh wait, Traviss does that to. See what I mean about messed up dynamics, and this really, really hurts what would otherwise have been a solid story. If you go and change key cultural relations without any prior reason like this, the story looses credibility since it fails to keep true to the heart of the franchise; to what we, the fans expect. And while retcon is always inevitable with growing properties, it should at least have a solid purpose that benefits the whole of the franchise, and what Traviss does fails to meet that requirement.

Traviss even manages to bungle the different UNSC personalities. The new ONI black ops team formed consists of some ODSTs and a Spartan-II amongst others, but is there any tension between them as the franchise has always shown? No, there isn't. In fact, in very short order the ODSTs are all buddy-buddy with the Spartan and a budding romance actually begins to surface, which just feels all manner of wrong.

The Spartans themselves, well, Traviss doesn't seem to understand that they're not traditional soldiers. The hardcore discipline of the Spartan-II's shown time and time again in all manner of media is really relaxed here, and Fred, Kelly, and Linda act very out of character throughout. In any potentially hostile territory they do not relax their guard, they always religiously respect the chain of command, and they would not be taking off their helmets and joking around yet this continually happens here. Traviss' rendition of the Spartan-II's simply doesn't feel like Spartans at all.

The Spartan-III's also don't feel right, and I'm really curious to know if Traviss even read Halo: Ghosts of Onyx or not to work out how these existing charatcer's personalities should be, and I'm really guessing she didn't.

Heck, at one point a civilian is briefly introduced and he begins swearing Gears of War style, clearly showing Traviss' influence from that universe. While yes, there is cursing in Halo, it's more controlled and, well, mature. The Gears of War story might be more violent and gory but it is juvenile compared to Halo and this is another intricacy that Traviss just doesn't seem to understand.

All of her characters, new and established ones from past fiction, feel forced, hollow, and wrong, and it's quite the shame as Halo: Glasslands had a significant amount of potential. While not a bad story on it's own merits, it doesn't feel "Halo" much at all, and I'm truly hoping that Traviss shapes up for the second novel in this series or that this series is deemed non-canon in short order.

Of all the Halo novels released over the last decade, I'd need to rank this one as the second worst simply due to all the unforgiving tampering and poorly done character and cultural dynamics. I also truly hope that the fiction represented in these pages is not a fine example of what we can expect in the upcoming Halo 4, as if it is, I have a feeling we'll all be very, very disappointed.

33 comments:

Anonymous said...

i couldn't agree more.

Juxtapose said...

@Anonymous Yeah, and it really, truly is a shame. I expected far better from Traviss, and greater continuity for such a well developed universe as Halo.

Hopefully the second novel in the series will tighten things up and stay more true to the source material, but unless this novel doesn't sell well or gets heavy criticism, that likely won't change.

AHINKLE said...

I could not agree more reread the story and reread the other book you will see what I'm talking about. as for them being relaxed being in hostile environment. its a for runner instillation and they only start to relax in time where they are safest. like in a guarded camp at night and only after they have surveyed the surrounding area and they have had similar banter and interaction and almost all of the book and other material so i do not see how this was any different. as for the differences and tension between the odst and the spartan later in the cannon and history of the franchise the odst had become more understanding of the spartan especially after the halo and the battle for earth after master chief had save and protected every one. the great schism was something that took a while for some factions to get involved with there was separation of differences between elites and there was a separation of difference in the brutes i would imagine there still being loyal brute it really doesn't seem that big of a stretch. I'm not trying to spam or be rude but i just get the haste in putting down this book going so far as to say it one of the worst one when IMO it one of the better one and i know that also MO but i just wanted to discus.

Juxtapose said...

@AHINKLE Firstly, I'm glad you enjoyed the novel! One great thing about any subjective medium is the different opinions everyone will have about it.

Secondly, what "other book?" There are several other Halo novels, all of which I have read many times.

I still personally disagree with most of your points though, and I stand by my feelings that Halo: Glasslands is a novel that does not stay true to the source material for the reasons I've already given.

Happy holidays!

VinceP1974 said...

Hi. I enjoyed your review,though disagree with you on a few points.

Most of your objections seem to be in the area where the typecasting of the characters is deviated from.

That some Brutes were still serving the Elites didn't seem to out of place to me. The Brutes are clearly a hierarchical society and I would assume without the proper Brute leader there to cause them to be agitated, domesticated Brutes are fine to serve Elite masters. Plus I'm sure the brutes are suffering just as much as the Elites by having most of its economy disrupted by the withhdrawal of species who did things they cannot do.

Plus the schism seems to be a rather spontaneous event during Halo2, so how much role-shifting sunk in throughout Covenant lands?

In the other novels, Brutes ships were described to be junk-heap quality and without strong weapons.

So post Halo-3, the Brutes should be lucky to even be alive much less be a cause of major problems for the Elites.

Next, to expect every possible interaction between ODST and Spartan-II to be dictated by the initial poor first impressions is just silly.

The ODST have now had decades to get to know the S-IIs.. in fact many new ODST recruits have probably grew up since infantcy hearing about the S-IIs. So no.. I'm not expecting prejudicial bigotry to be displayed fragnantly while they're all meeting at the office of the head of ONI

That's my two cents anyway. Love your site.

Juxtapose said...

@VinceP1974 Glad you enjoyed the review and thanks for visiting the site!

A few comments regarding your comments:

- Have you ever read "The Return," the short in Halo: Evolutions - Essential Tales to the Halo Universe? It's set about seven years after Halo 3, and it focuses on an Elite Shipmaster who's reflecting on the current Elite/Brute war, started with the Great Schism, and the two species campaigns to genocide each other.

It has long since been established that Elites and Brutes do not get along, and after the Great Schism it's a war of extermination between their two species. The fact that there are now Brutes serving Elites goes completely against the established canon.

Also, the Brutes were given poorer ships and equipment until the Great Schism. At that point when the Elites were cast down and the Prophets elevated the Brutes the Brutes inherited many new and fine ships along with weapons and technology. The remaining Prophets are in hiding but still allied with the Brutes.

Post-Halo 3, the Brutes are still a very serious concern for the Elites and have been for years. This is fact.

- The Spartan-II program only was made public in the late 2540's, so any newer generation of ODST's would _not_ have been awed by tales of Spartan-II's since infancy.

The mistrust and elitist envy between ODST's hold towards the Spartans is also very well documented. Read Halo: Fall of Reach, Halo: The Flood, Halo: First Strike, and watch Halo: Legends, "The Babysitter." Also listen to the commentary of "The Babysitter" where Frank O. clearly discusses the friction in this relationship.

Halo: Glasslands changes a lot of these established facts out of the blue, which is what irks me and many other long-time fans of Halo fiction.

Lias said...

great review, am yet to read this one but am disappointed to hear the author is messing with the established canon and lore, brutes serving elites post-schism seems highly unbelievable considering their species have always had a tense relationship at the best of times. Would you still recommend picking this one up?

Juxtapose said...

@Lias At full retail price, personally, no I wouldn't. If you find it discounted though, then yes.

The core story is solid, but the character development, the retcon, and blatant disregard for established fact in the universe really irked me.

Roun Cole said...

My thoughts are to large it seems, so I will make a two part post, if not three, if the server allows me xD.

#1

I want to further this criticism of this ignorant British septic dweller.

First of all, she set the whole thing around Australia, every single reference to earth is about Australia, every last one, at least in other books like "cole protocol" the reference was only to "Luna" a non bias location, everything in her world centers around her country, not the earth itself.

Sydney, is the capital of Australia, what the hell makes the capital of Australia so important? Why not have the head of all ONI operations set up in the rocky mountains, or some location that can be defended from anything, some fast mountain range with convenient agricultural land within a hundred miles is more tactically advantageous than a giant island which is half covered in salt deserts.

So the authors home country being bias on its own isnt bad enough, it doesnt make sense in the mind set of ONI.

Further more on the whole British bias bullshit BBB, Hood is not British, look at the interactions after the meeting with Vadem, she makes him sound like a Brit, "I say, he really likes you" if anyone was paying attention, they would know that Hood has a more American accent, if anything else, its a direct slap in the face that she had to coop existing people to feed her personal bullshit, I would say have Nulund rewrite this "thing" BECAUSE IT IS HERECY!!! KILL THE DEMON!!! lol but seriously, she should be banned form ever touching our baby for that alone.

Roun Cole said...

#2

Secondly, we have Dr Halsey, she was totally unfair and emotionally bias towards Halsey, no doubt, what Halsey did was wrong, and in any reasonable society she should be put to death, but she was the least of all the evils, another thing that Traviss didnt do any research on.

Lets look at the history of the Spartan Project, Halsey was funded by ONI, that alone says that Parangosky approved of the project, so Parangosky has no right to say anything about Halsey.

Further more, Halsey displayed great humanity from the beginning of the program, she didnt like what she was about to do to these children, but she believed it would serve the greater good, which in the end was right, it still isnt acceptable what so ever, but in situational justice it just turns out that it was good, which is another topic of distastefulness on its own.

Anyhow, Halsey had all manor of guilt about what she was doing, as also seen in "the fall of reach" she wanted to take more time to do more research for the augmentation stage, but THEY wouldnt allow it, ONI as a whole, directly under Parangosky, did not have any conscience on the issue, while Halsey did.

Then finally, the IIIs, The III program is an insult to everyone and everything, Ackerson took hundreds of children, scrambled there brains, gave them cheap cut down equipment, and sent them to die at the age of twelve, how in hell can anyone justify anything against Halsey, when Ackerson, under Parangosky, preformed that atrocity, you want to go to Mendez on the whole philosophy of Spending lives and Wasting lives, well thats one hell of a waste.

To take that meny children and send them to there deaths, ON PURPOSE!!! is far worse than anything Halsey ever did, yet Halsey is seen as Hitler and the devil.


That was the one thing that turned this whole book on its head for me, it almost made it unreadable, and this bitch expected you to pay $15 for this piece of shit? REALLY???

Then lets go to Neomi, I forget the surname, but you know what im talking about, her father, is now alive and running a major Insurrectionist group that can do serious damage in the long run, this also, I feel is Traviss filling the book with bias, its just another brick in the wall of why Halsey is Hitler and the devil, and that should be taken out of the serious all together.




I liked the book over all, it was a good story as the author of this review said, but these are the two fundamental issues that break the back of everything we see here.

I personally want to see Karen Traviss held accountable in the same manor that Halsey was, lets go ahead and say it, Traviss is Hitler and the devil, because she has no respect of the halo fans, none at all.

Roun Cole said...

@VinceP1974

Yeah, I dont really know how to handle people like you, I want to try and be respectful but its a hard thing to do.

I believe you when you said you read other books, but it seems to me like you werent paying attention at all to the things that really mattered, I left comments on this subject on a video on Youtube, and it then bled into the game Reach, how how Bungie hates there fans for rewriting every damn thing about Reach, not to mention creating non-existent IIIs that were simply to old for the date, and that Halsey was talking to them like it was nothing out of the norm.

Yet when I made that criticism I was rebuked by someone who sounds just like you who said that everything lined up perfectly, its absurd to say that everything in Reach was "normal" people like that simply dont pay attention yet feel free to make a judgement, and well, you strike me as that kind of person.

Roun Cole said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Juxtapose said...

@Roun Cole Lots of feedback, thanks. A few comments of my own:

- I wouldn't call Travis an ignorant British septic dweller. She's done some excellent work in the Star Wars and Gears of War franchises, and her Halo short, "Human Weakness," was excellent. She's got the right stuff to create an amazing story, but Halo: Glasslands severely dropped the ball in my opinion.

- Travis is British, not Australian. Australia is _not_ her home country and Sydney, Australia was established as ONI's primary location on Earth about a decade ago by Erik Nylund (see Halo: First Strike), so having Sydney portrayed in Halo: Glasslands makes sense in the context of the story.

- I agree with you about Halsey. Using her as a scape goat came out of left field.

- Halo: Reach is heavily retconned, which irked me as well. A solid story on its own merits and one of my favourite games in the franchise, but I'm not a fan of retcon. Halsey's Journal, which was written by Nylund and came with the Limited Edition, helps connect things better to the core fiction, but it's still not perfect.

- Halo: Legends is all artistic interpretation and, as you mention, Japanese, so it's going to have the flavour from that culture. Being anime this shouldn't come as a surprise. Me, I liked many of the core stories featured in it but not a lot of animation.

- Before you go hating on British and Japanese, note that everything you're angry about was authorized and endorsed by 343 Industries: an American company. They're the people now responsible for the direction of the Halo franchise, and I confess I'm concerned for Halo 4.

Roun Cole said...

@Juxtapose

Heres my story, as in Glasslands with Halsey, I take a sense of "ownership" with halo.

I grew up with halo, literally, I see John as a brother, if anything I get a little upset when I see the word "fiction" because for me its not.

Dont miss understand me, I know its not real, I just see it as something personal, halo more or less was the center of all things positive for me in my childhood, it was the escape from the sheer hell that is an unforgiving world.

John, as I said is pretty much family to me, as are the others of the program, I am emotionally involved in everything they go though, with that said, anyone who takes anything lightly, is a fool, an unacceptable fool.

With the example of rewriting the battle of reach, you just took everything that is real and tossed it out on its ass, needless to say, that makes people like me furious, no one has the right to meddle with history, its been established, set in stone, you cant do things like this...

The future of halo is more in the open, if anything I have ideas of how things can be radically changed for the better and still remain true to its heritage.

I say what I say about Travis and I stand by it, because you cant deny that extreme biases have been directly injected that do no belong, as you said, she did good work in "starwars" and "gears of war" which are polar opposites of halo, they are not to be considered good references when talk about something as dynamic as halo.

I say she is ignorant because as you continue to say, she did so well in starwars and gears, she is taking material and behavior from those areas and putting them in halo, i dont pay much attention to gears but from what I hear from others, she put the "swearing style" of gears into halo, I cant verify that myself, but taking them at there word, shit like that is unacceptable, you cant take culture from other places and pass it off as normal, thats what makes her ignorant, in fact, I doubt she even read all the rest of the books or played any of the games to know what she is talking about at all.

I digress, the point of it all is that she is not a halo fan, because she is too "multi cultured" she cant have a true appreciation for what halo really is.

Roun Cole said...

@Juxtapose

#1

On a more positive note, heres how I feel about the future, my big vested interested is to see Johns fate, I dont want to see more dramatic bullshit like halo 3 where they kill everyone just for the sake of drama, as you say it, that irked me pretty bad.

No doubt hes going to have quite the adventure with these new constructs, I believe he will have some good favor with what ever construct is active there, unless they have whole sale malfunctioned, given that he is seen as "forerunner" as has been painfully pounded into the open from the beginning of the series, that humans are forerunners, he should have a lot of machines on his side, but whos to say what threats there will be in this totally unknown part of the galaxy.

Personally, I want to see him prove his mettle then be able to return home, in my mind the best way for the spartans to retire is for them to fight until there is nothing left to fight, then take up jobs as specialists training the next generation whither spartan or ODST either way, the best way for it to end is a fairly peaceful life until they grow old and die.

But then, thats my response to the sheer hell they have endured, ive had kind of a negative mind set sense the end of Halo 3 so its not as bad as I see it I dont think.

As for the insurrection, I believe in them, I believe that change is due for human civilization, human civilization does in stages, with great heart-ship which requires blood and courage, the end result is liberty and prosperity, at the end of that stage people become lazy and decedent, in which case tyranny takes hold, the UNSC is a tyranny, it has served humanity well in times of crisis, but now is the stage in civilization where people need to become free once more.

The question then becomes, what kind of result do you have from said revolution? Do you have a free society like the united states, with real representation of the masses while strong defense from outside treats, or will the revolution bring nothing be pain and death with a worse system than the UNSC to take its place, and ultimately a weakening of the human race as a whole to outside threats.

I believe the insurrectionists are right, but if they dont go about it the right way, humanity would be better off if they were crushed beneath the heel of the UNSCs lesser evil, its better that humanity remains strong against outside threats to live on, rather than humanity die out and have all there struggles be in vein.

Roun Cole said...

@Juxtapose

#2

For game-play minded improvement, I believe that the next few decades should be relatively peaceful, an uneasy peace between humanity and sangheilios, growing into a stronger friendship, with better understand between the two races.

If a new conflict were to break out, I believe there should be at least a few decades of peace of real talks to take place, so that peace after is more possible, something similar to the nations of Europe, they had wars all the time, but they never truly hated each other to the point where they needed to kill each other off in a holy war.

In said peace for the time being, there should be a season of trade between all races, wither human sangheili kig-yar what have you, and a renaissance of new technology, in which case would give 343 everything they need to overhaul everything in halo and invent completely new weapons vehicles, and equipment.

I think its much more appropriate for halo in the future to be more like rainbow 6 with complex battlefields with more gorilla style combat as is the nature of the spartan style of combat, better use of cover, using gear that can set traps, modification and customization of equipment for more specialized tactics, all these things would make the game-play more true to the spirit of halo.

Juxtapose said...

@Roun Cole Glad you like Halo so much and you certainly have some well thought out ideas about the franchise.

The one key thing to keep in mind though is that while Traviss wrote Halo: Glasslands, 343 Industries not only permitted it but have acknowledged it as canon.

Everything you and I don't like about this story is now official to the Halo universe thanks to 343 Industries.

So, this is the basis for the universe that Halo 4 and the new trilogy will be set in, and that seriously worries me.

You also didn't like Halo: Legends, but this project was overseen and endorsed by 343 Industries; while it was artistically interpreted the core elements of Halo: Legends are canon.

Same with Halo: Reach. Bungie was the developer, but Microsoft Studios, and by extension 343 Industries, was the publisher and the overall story direction was up to them, so again, they either allowed all that retcon to happen or instigated it.

343 Industries is also untried as a game developer, where their only products were a buggy Halo Wars patch and Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary, a re-skin of someone else's product.

I'm really hoping they don't drop the ball with Halo 4, however we'll need to see and I'll need to see more before I can declare that game a day-one purchase for me.

Roun Cole said...
This comment has been removed by a blog administrator.
Juxtapose said...

@Roun Cole Actually, it doesn't belong to the fans and they can rewrite what they want (whether we agree with it or not). The Halo franchise is legally owned by Microsoft and like any company, they've always been in it for the money over anything else; gaming is a business after all.

If you feel that strongly about it, your best recourse is to vote with your wallet and not buy any future Halo or Microsoft-related products and to encourage others to do the same.

The latest publication of Halo: The Fall of Reach wasn't a rewrite, it was a republication of the novel similar to how Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary is a re-release of a classic game. With this republication, they took the opportunity to update certain things.

Fact: Did you know that the first Elite John-117 ever fought was originally during the battle of Reach in August 2552? In the entire 27 years of the Human-Covenant War, John had never encountered an Elite before. This republication fixed that since it clearly made no sense, but was the original canon.

I said the core stories of Halo: Legends are predominately canon, not everything in it. And the Japanese studios behind the projects did indeed do their research, as 343 Industries sent them actual models and art from the games, and Frank O'Connor and others from 343 Industries regularly met with them to review and guide their progress. Raging against the Japanese in such a racist fashion just makes you look foolish, I'm afraid, so you really might want to scale back on that. I know you're angry, but direct it at the party responsible for this direction of the franchise: 343 Industries. The Japanese studios, Karen Traviss, they were all contracted by 343 Industries, and as their boss, 343 Industries could have made them change anything at any time. They didn't. Why? Because this is the direction they want the franchise to go in.

You can go to the official forums on Halo Waypoint here: http://halo.xbox.com/forums/

Good luck.

Also, while it was implied that humans were descendants of the Forerunners in Halo: Combat Evolved and Halo 2, this was proven false in Halo 3. Humans are the chosen successors of the Forerunners, but not their descendants.

Roun Cole said...

@Juxtapose

NO, it is established that we are the forerunners.

1. In Combat Evolved, 343 Guilty Spark said "you cant imagine how exciting this is, to have a record of all our lost time, human history is it? fascination...

2. Only humans can activate the rings, as well as many other installations.

3. As seen in "Contact Harvest", the existence of humans contradicts the Covenant religion, that was the reason for the holy war.

4. The most plain statement that humans are the forerunners was 343 Guilty Spark near the end of halo 3 "you are the child of my maker, inheritor of all they left behind, you are forerunner" that in of itself is all you need.

So if thats not true, then all halo canon is a great big contradiction, I rest my case.


Its typical that im the last person on earth that gives a shit about what matters.....

Juxtapose said...

@Roun Cole It's not actually, unless they retcon things again.

1. Yes, 343 Guilty Spark did say that, which is why it was implied early on that humans were Forerunner descendants, but this wasn't the case. 343 Guilty Spark was crazy at this point, as you should know by his other comments throughout this game.

2. Of course, because the Forerunners made us their inheritors.

3. It was our existence, our being "Reclaimers," and Mendacant Bias' reaction to our discovery that proved the Covenant religion false.

4. As I mentioned above, 343 Guilty spark was crazy, and when he made this comment, he was rampant and applying a form of existentialism.

Read the Halo 3 terminals where the Librarian discovered us on Earth. Watch Halo: Legends "Origins" and see how our species was re-seeded from the Ark. Read Halo: Cryptum and see how Humanity is far older than we believed and was at war with the Forerunners, in which the Forerunners nearly exterminated our species and de-evolved us.

Did you also know that the Humans and Prophets once had a galaxy spanning empire? Did you know that Humans were the first to encounter the Flood and that we actually created a cure to Flood infection, and the reason we were not wiped out by the Forerunners was in the hope that they could get this cure from us (which they apparently never did)?

So unless they completely go and change things again, Humans and Forerunners are two different species, and the Terminals in Halo: Combat Evolved Anniversary actually hint that not only have Forerunners survived the activation of the Halo array, but that the Didact still has some kind of grudge against humanity and may be returning.

We'll have to wait and see.

Juxtapose said...

Blogger won't permit editing of comments, so any posts with extreme racist comments have been removed.

Comments are certainly welcome, but post constructively.

Thank you.

Roun Cole said...

Yeah, typical, you would site "legends" as proof of something, as I have been saying, japs didnt do anything right, every last one of the eight cartoons they made were bullshit, they fucked up every single detail and yet you hypocrites say its "canon" no, its call people who are more concerned with dragon ball Z and hari-kari to actually do something right that wasnt invented by them.

Its clear to me now that your not a halo fan, I should have expect as much from the beginning, your willing to criticize travis for the things she did wrong, but when japs blatantly get every last thing wrong, you act as if its normal, and of course, you side with 343 as these incorruptible gods.

The reason why everything goes wrong, is because the majority of people are like you, when something is done wrong, you just bow down and accept it.

People like you are the cause for the wrong in this world, thank God its all almost over...

Juxtapose said...

@Roun Cole Whether you or I like Halo: Legends or not doesn't affect whether it's canon or not. 343 Industries now decides what is canon in the Halo universe.

I am most certainly a Halo fan, but I am not a fanatic. There's a very fine line, and if you seriously believe that I haven't ever criticized Halo: Legends and that I "side" with 343 Industries, then you haven't paid attention.

For 343 Industries, I'm simply stating the facts pertaining to them and the Halo franchise; that's it, and I've disagreed with a great many things they've done and have strong doubts that they'll deliver a solid sequel to the franchise.

Anyway, it's been fun. Take care.

Anonymous said...

wow is all i can say..
i realise im posting really late since i only found this site today since i was considering getting glasslands.. not so sure bout it now

@ roun Cole u have some serious issues, at the end of the day its just halo, don't get me wrong im a huge halo fan! ive been playing it since i was 8, i have every achievement in 3 and odst, just missing a few in reach and i have sevral halo tattoos, its safe to say im obsessed, but dude! u gotta chill the fuck out! yes lots of the canon is contradictory it pisses me off too but getting all racist nd shit and kicking up a fuss on this just makes u seem immature.

personally i think halo should have stopped at halo 3
i loved reach but it seriously fucked with my head, i have not read all the novels. just fall of reach, the flood, first strike, ghosts of onyx nd currently evolutions, id like to think i have a fairly good grasp on the halo universe and reach just went against most of it...
i'm angry about how 343 have shown no regard for the fans when it comes to the canon. theyre just money hungry bastards! but i am excited to play as master chief again and to see the evolution of multiplayer. i may not b happy with the end results but thats still to be seen im worried bout the future of the universe with 343 but its their universe now and no matter how pissed off we get we cant change that.

also when halo 4 comes out it'll probably seal the fate of 343 if it doesnt live up to the standards of veteran halo fans it likely wont rake in the profit their expecting. if thats the case they'll deserve it but im hoping they have the inteligence to realise what and what not to do and make a kick ass game that lives up to the halo name
roll on november 6th!

one last note, sorry for the poor grammar i havent slept in a long time nd my heads fried, oh and well done to juxtapose for putting that amadan in his place

Juxtapose said...

@Anonymous No worries about late posts, and thanks for reading the review and chiming in! I personally think the Master Chief's story should have stopped at Halo 3 (with perhaps only prequels done), but since there's so much money to be had with the franchise we all knew that wouldn't happen.

At this point I'm still concerned with 343 Industries ability to deliver a faithful Halo experience. I will continue to watch the game closely and we'll see how things go getting closer to November. I hope we're pleasantly surprised.

Anonymous said...

I agree with this review. Traviss spends so much time developing characters and going over what people are thinking, and she gets them all wrong! There isn't as much action as there is in the original six books (Fall of Reach-Cole Protocol) and it really isn't as gripping or interesting. It annoys me that she's got so much wrong, and calling the Sangheili "hinge-heads" is stupid! Since when is that their nickname? Its split-head woman!!

Juxtapose said...

Also split-lip.

Sack Dangles said...

It's Split-Chin according to sgt Johnson.

I was pretty disappointed by this book. It is not that the book is bad, the story is quite good, but I feel the authors personal bias has overridden pre existing characteristics. I am glad that I waited for the MMPB.

Everything that didn't have to deal with the Elites or Halsey was good. I felt that the Kilo 5 group was interesting (unless Osman thinks of Halsey), and while there wasn't much action it was alright. Also with a few exceptions the Elite parts were quite good too.

But the way Halsey was handled seemed quite petty. Parangosky seemed more like a character from a "soap" as opposed to the old cold calculating tactition that she seems in previous stories. Halsey with all of her experience with the Spartan program and Forerunner Lore and Tech , is way to valuable to Parangosky. I see Parangosky using her, and locking her away from society, but the vindictive "Look at what you did to my daughter" attitude that she and Osman have toward Halsey is a bit childish.

Then we get to the Dyson Sphere, and "the young and the restless". I honestly feel that she really destroyed the Mendez character. Again we have two characters that have taken part in equally deplorable acts, yet somehow hold it against each other, as opposed to utilizing their combined resources while stuck in a unknown potentially hostile enviroment. From previous descriptions of both Halsey and Mendez, they would have saved those issues until they found a way out of the Sphere. Survival trumping everything else, that is what they taught their Spartans.

In fact a conflict between Halsey and Kelly would have been much more interesting and entertaining than making Mendez into this old grunt, who would rather jepordize the team than work with Halsey. Seems to go against all the teamwork training that he had taught to the Spartans over some 30+ years.

The problem with the Elites is that there is no opposing view with the exception of the Arbiter. Not once is there mention of Jul coming into contact with anyone supporting the Arbiter. No suspense of them almost getting caught, and too many Human slag words, an Elite who hates humans is not going to lower himself to use their slang. I mean this is a race who thinks it dishonorable to go to a doctor!

I will be getting Thursday War from my library, I love Halo...but I don't feel she is deserving of my money until, she picks up her game.

Anonymous said...

Juxtapose
"Do you have a free society like the united states, with real representation of the masses while strong defense from outside treats"

Really? If you believe this you are truly naive my friend.

Juxtapose said...

@Anonymous

You do realize that I wasn't the one who posted what you're quoting me as saying, right?

Travis Broes said...

I believe it is for a selective audience.I I find it very amusing ! I am afraid to even indulge as to the allegorical model for this story . Some one might call me a Trojan if I did. On this world even islands are not islands. I must learn the this type of scripting one day. I thing that the Author is more talented than Homer himself. British not Australian. One never existed in the past so niether matter. You would be surprised to know what peoples have accumulate in Australia. Perhaps it is a clue. But of course I am mistaken this is the future we are discussing.

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