6 years later and in the end Master Chief is basically deserted on a Halo ring with nobody but his fellow marines, a new Cortana, and a AWOL pilot. I feel like they swept the last two games under the rug and was kinda disappointed after reading a lot of the books and replaying everything with how the story was told and everything that was left out. I would’ve been happy at least with a scene with the Infinity going down. Now the question is how long before they tell us anything else about the state of the universe or where everyone is now. Hoping months but my prediction is probably a year or two
I don’t think they swept Halo 4 under the rug at all, they make a ton of references to it even with Cortana’s lines/whispers to Chief.
Yeah I thought the references were cool but with how powerful they made Cortana out to be in Halo 5 and even The Shadows of Reach, you’d expect more than her just being told she was locked down off screen and exploded herself offscreen. And although some of the Guardians power was shown, all her followers, the Created, were basically pointless, aside from the one who pulled a suicide grunt move with the spartan station .
It does look like they’re sweeping Cortana ruling the galaxy for a year under the rug. But, until they clarify what’s going on in the wider galaxy we only have a one liner from Atriox and he’s not a reliable narrator. For all we know, nothing really changed when she was removed as leader. For all we know the Created freaked out and went full Skynet. For all we know the Warden is coming to get revenge on Chief. For all we know they lost the Guardians and it’s absolute madness in the Galaxy as result. For all we know everything’s went back to how it was save for a few thousand titanic robots lying ominously around. We just don’t know.
I must admit, it felt odd that they outright tell you Cortana is dead at the start of the game. Felt pretty sure they were going to pull some kind of twist regarding that. But really it’s exactly as stated. A copy of Cortana locks her down and as a result she dies. The only additional information you discover is that she ultimately returns to the light and sacrifices herself to save the Galaxy. I don’t think they’ve left themselves any room to pull that twist.
I mean keep in mind the original Story for Halo 5 was for the Ur-Didact to return and begin melding Promethean tech with Jul 'Madama’s Covenant to create a bigger threat for the galaxy at large with some aspects still lost as Halo Guardians became 5 so it was tossed out the window before it could develop. The created plot was half baked and 343 knew it and knows they still have all the games up to 4 to look to with Halo 5 being dusted in the wind basically. I feel the aftermath of Cortana’s death will be felt in the books though, with Anvil Station being kind of recanonized, I could see a joint team of Spartans and Sangheili be sent into the universe for possibly a trilogy of books just to see the aftermath, possibly beginning to mend things with the Jiralhane, causing a possible back plot of having ONI as a sort of antagonistic organization in it. I mean Infinite is a 10 year platform so they likely won’t be leaving the ring and subplant main DLCs with stories from possibly other spartans such as Osiris, Blue Team, Red Team, or others maybe.
It could have been worse.
She could have gotten the Jul ‘Mdama treatment.
. I was never convinced they had killed off Cortana in 4. They made too much of her as part of the story, the whole Mendicant Bias analogy was already there and they introduce an army of robot ants/bees; wonder who the Queens meant to be. The only shock was how OTT they went with her taking the whole Galaxy over.
My thought at the time was that the Didact, because he shows curiosity about Cortana towards the end of the game, was going to try and Frankenstein her into some sort of weapon. Which he would then lose control over and things would spiral from there.
Also it’s not the same because the Didact was defeated and we see him fall with his flagship going down. Halo 4 was a self contained narrative with only speculation as to who would come back. Whereas Halo 5 is an explicit cliffhanger in which the entire galaxy changes and you have an obvious Battlestar Galactica setup with the Infinity. Whilst it involves Cortana whose relationship with Chief is a central part of the narrative as opposed to the Didact who was only briefly introduced as an antagonist. It’s not comparing like with like.