I like Eklund. A lot actually

Maybe it’s just the Scandinavian in me, but I really like Spartan Eklund.

Her whole vibe is good, I like her whole spiel about how her kit isn’t standard, it’s a mix of hard choices and sacrifices, I like that bit about someone picking up her pieces someday, because like…

That resonates with the campaign, that’s what we did the whole time. Lots of times where Chief would have struggled severely without another Spartan’s gear they dropped - and if not their gear, then the battles they fought that paved the way for him to finish their fight.

I do like how one of Infinite’s core themes is that, even if we’re working alone, we’re still part of a greater whole at the end of the day.

It’s really great. Thematically consistent and pretty comfortably well written. (I know that’s dangerous to say on here, where writing quality is measured in bullets fired.)

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Honestly I love her too! Especially with what she talks about echoing the themes of infinite as a whole like you said. I just wish we got more of her. I feel like 343 has an issue of introducing cool characters only to do very little with them.

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The MP narrative is still weak as watered down beer. It’s a nice touch for her character, but that’s not enough. I still don’t care about Arygna, Eiklund or Dihn. At all.

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She’s not bad but I do wish we get more of her

Also it would be nice to get a cutscene with Hieu Dinh soon

Hell, it would be cool if we could select her to be the announcer for BTB instead of Arygna

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See, and that’s the problem with these characters. From the strictly game-based standpoint, Eklund is a nothing-burger whose greatest contribution on screen so far is talking at the player about herself and being a lone wolf. That’s about it.

This is the problem with not introducing these characters to us and having them just appear. If we’re supposed to view these characters as Heroes of the UNSC that have earned their spot, show them doing cool stuff. Even Republic Commando, back in the early 2000’s, understood that effective character introductions make characters more fun to be around. Each member of Delta Squad not only gets a super cool introduction that showcases their combat prowess, but also introduces gameplay mechanics that you need to learn to progress the game.

So far, all we know about Eklund from the game itself (discounting lore tidbits on Waypoint because few read them) is that she’s a Spartan, she can shoot an Assault Rifle presumably… Decently, she was part of some event called the Vihar Collapse, she works with another Spartan called Dinh, and she’s got an obsession with wolves. There are hints of cool events, fun and interesting parts of the lore, but the most you get is a vague hint at them and you never get to participate or see the cool things that happen in those stories. Eklund is presumably cool. I don’t know because she just talks at me and never does anything.

It feels like being on the bench during a football game where you’re not even on the field, you’re in the locker room getting a play-by-play of the game told to you by a toddler.

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I can’t really say I like or dislike her, and that is because of the writing, or rather the lack there of. When she is introduced in the Season 2 cutscene she is pretty much used as an exposition dump. No action scene showing her exploits in the field, no example of her skills, just shows up with a limp Spartan and basically gives a rather dull description of the new multiplayer map and the Banished AI.

And then you next see her in this past event cutscene and get a couple lines of dialog that I guess can be considered kinda deep if you are looking way too into it. Honestly if the Academy was a multiplayer hub (like how the Tower is in Destiny for example), her dialog could fit as an in-passing NPC interaction. Personally seemed kind of wasted to use as an “event” cutscene.

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I hope we get both Season 2 characters as recurring characters. We haven’t even seen much of Heigh Dinh yet.
Hopefully Forge will bring interactive events like we were hoping.

We’ll get there. You do need to, for now, be willing to care. I want to know more about all of them. So getting to learn any more is exciting.

Yeah! I wanna’ see that!!

I actually want her as an announcer for LSS! Mode-appropriate announcers would be best.

Arena: Steitzer
BTB: Agryna
LSS: Eklund (though, character wise, tbh seems to fit Dinh more.)

Saying this again.

My issue with 343’s approach to many new characters is that they have a “Tell, not show” approach

Can someone summarize the MP story for me? As far as I can tell:

At an unclear time in an unnamed location, Spartans are training. At one point, a banished AI was captured. There is heavy implication that various Spartans seem to be off fighting someone (the Banished, I guess?) although the broader story outside Zeta halo is very cloudy.

Is that about the extent of it?

I do like this theme. Seeing stories of other Spartans is neat and could lead to a nice PvE multiplayer setup. The idea of being a cadet and seeing the loss of your fellow UNSC personal as you advance through ranks and get unlocks would make customizations feel more personal.

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All I got to say is, “I didn’t play my least favorite game mode for a few hours just to get a 30 sec. cutscene of Elkund just say hi and good job”.

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I’ve said it before and I’ll say it again, the layman learning the term, “Show don’t tell” has been such a hit to media and literature and will be talked about in the following decades as a case of, “That time period where everyone was very sure they knew how to write novels but really, did not know.”

There’s a time to not show. The MP stuff is clearly from the perspective of our Spartan. We don’t differ from their experiences all too much. Can you honestly name one MP story cutscene that’s been generally out of our perspective? The closest we’ve gotten is the entire introduction to who Agryna is (which was a pretty cut and dry demonstration of why she does what she does thus, who she is and what drives her - the heroism of Spartans and the hope they represented to her when she was younger). - maybe the first few seconds of Season 2’s opening cutscene. Then we were right there.

This is our Spartan’s story, and it really hasn’t quite started yet.

Eklund did literally just tell us that there’s room for more wolves in the pack. If that doesn’t sound like an offer, IDK what does.

If you want to look at it in such a deconstructed manner, sure. A LOT MORE has been said if you care to read about it - and I encourage you do. It’s not like you’re reading novella here, just… item descriptions and exerpts. The entire season has painted a fascinating picture of what exactly Lone Wolves have been doing this whole time. A whole lot about how they had to fall back on really old stuff to fight The Created, the measures used to fight that battle for as long as it lasted - how their tools have served them against the Banished, what’s happened beyond our view and reach, but has absolutely most certainly happened.

I don’t think Halo fans by and large understand yet that 343i likes to write on several fronts but put us in one at a time. Eklund, Chief, Agryna, Blue Team, Osiris, Lasky, Halsey, Griffin and the other Zeta Spartans… have all had their stories elsewhere, but they’ve had them. It doesn’t matter that we haven’t seen them, my Gods, do we really need to be spoonfed so hard? Can we not imagine these things? Action-wise, my favorite log is when Spartan Makovich had to outrun the ring’s collapse as that huge explosion happened. What a ride! No idea what it looks like, but, I’ve got a brain, I can certainly picture it without a VFX budget and it’s -Yoink!- cool.

And I DO think they’re achieving that, more or less…!

Sounds like you shouldn’t have participated in that level of self harm. Why play a mode you don’t like? For armor you probably won’t use?

Look. You’re playing a sci-fi military shooter, and I can almost guarantee that most of the people playing aren’t coming in for the deep story-telling that some want it for. This is the same series that has, at least in the original trilogy, relied on visual feasts for the eyes. When characters stand around and talk, especially about things that just aren’t that interesting, people tune it out.

I think more than anything of seeing cool things, people want to be active participants in cool things. The narrative events have for the most part been loosely connected lore snippets that appeal to a very niche demographic of the player-base that actually cares about that stuff. For me, Halo storylines are the groundwork by which cool gameplay stuff happens, and which hasn’t happened in Halo Infinite yet. Maybe it will.

Certainly doesn’t feel like it.

If I rolled my eyes any harder, I might offset the gravitational spin of the planet.

The vast majority of video games, barring some text adventures, rely on their visuals about as much as a television show or movie does. Even books have a heavy reliance on effective visual descriptions - J.R.R. Tolkien’s work was really good because it allowed the reader to create a near perfect image of what Tolkien was describing. The thing that keeps people invested is when the visual component is as epic as the story-telling component. The background of the Destiny Ascension in Mass Effect 1 is really cool. Seeing the massive Destiny Ascension fly by your tiny ship is even cooler. In Mass Effect 2, it would be one thing for you to upgrade your ship and then have Joker yell out “We destroyed the Collector Ship!” it’s another to see that represented and makes that scene more enjoyable to the viewer because that’s the result of what they did.

This is the same deal with Halo Reach. In Halo Reach, it would be one thing to hear about the Grafton get destroyed by the Covenant Super Carrier. It’s another to see the Grafton destroy the Spire, and then get sliced up by the Covenant Super Carrier. Or to watch the Covenant Super Carrier get destroyed by the makeshift bomb.

That’s the strength of video games as a story-telling medium - they can balance the effectiveness of interactivity and the visual component mixed with effective verbal/written storytelling. The issue with the present storytelling in Halo Infinite’s multiplayer is that it’s all spoken at you. It’s way harder for the majority of people to get invested in events they only ever hear about, and never really see the results of or the action of. For some people, a lore snippet is all they need. For a lot of us, especially coming off of games like Halo 3: ODST that had interactive flashbacks, we need more than the little we’re getting.

Show us the cool stuff, don’t just tease us with it and then talk about it. Make us active participants in this universe, immerse us in the action of this universe, don’t just talk about it.

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I love eklund too, and her talk about how she built up her life as a lone wolf built more care and understanding of the character. Learning her story, how she grew to be the way she is now, and how she spoke in admiration about dihn being such a good person. Not only as a teammate but also as a friend! what I’m also really curious about is dihn. All we really know about him is that he’s a partner to eklund and that he accidentally put a red danger thingy in his chrome dome. Which sucks yes. But I feel like there’s not a lot about him. He needs more screen time.

Then maybe they shouldn’t play Halo. Halo has always had a pretty consistently deep story.

That trilogy ended in 2007, and since 2004, has been supplemented with a myriad of external media. Maybe if you weren’t used to reading the books and actually, Gods forbid, using your imagination to see things, it’d be jarring. I guess I should perhaps, consider the person who literally only plays the games and doesn’t read item descriptions or, really anything.

Sorry to hear that. Maybe this game isn’t for you. There’s a whole campaign where cool and interesting stuff happens, though. If you don’t think it is, then you might want to try Call of Duty. A lot of very bright and colorful explosions with big name actors happen there.

You’re telling a writer that. You know that right? I am a writer first and foremost and an artist second. My girlfriends and many of my friends, are accomplished, several-thousand-followers artists. Trust me. I understand the importance of visual media and the evocation of visual media.

So, if you don’t picture what Eklund is talking about, her scavenging for gear, hard decisions, etc. - when she tells you, trust me, it’s not her or the story’s problem, it’s a you, the audience problem, and you don’t really seem like the kind of person I’d want to write for anyway.

Just gonna’ say I think the Destiny Ascension is one of the series’ weakest designs. They mention a huge weapon on it and honestly, I can’t tell if it’s the upper spire aboard the damn thing or the massive hole in the center. Asari ships just kind of blow design-wise, speaking as a starship designer myself.

Entirely different narrative/story. Do you actually understand why we see those things?

BOTH of the things you described, are happening to us, and are things we are DOING. That our crews are doing.

…Eklund’s story isn’t ours. We were not there for it. We do not need to see it. What you’re asking for isn’t either of those two things.

You’re asking to see the entire invasion of earth scene-by-scene while we’re off gallivanting around the galaxy. What you’re telling me is that you’re mad Hackett gives you reports instead of showing you videos of what’s happening on Earth.

That is basically, what you are saying. A fallacious double standard I should not and do not take seriously.

Funny that. In the story of ODST, the Rookie pieces around the story himself after it happened, putting the clues together. Whether they’re 100% truly what occurred or not, said rookie pieces together the events in his head to reach a conclusion about what happened to his squad, in events he was not part of.

Which uh, is basically what the game is now asking you to do. Follow the Rookie’s example, figure it out for yourself. I have. Why haven’t you?

We’ll get our chance. For now, we have to hear about things we weren’t part of. Or, do you get mad when family tells you stories and they don’t show you video recordings of it like that soyjack that’s holding a phone at you?

SEE, THIS IS WHAT I’M TALKING ABOUT, @OKMB2056.

Here’s someone that’s taken all the context clues and actually listened, instead of being mad that they aren’t being spoonfed the story! Damn!

Good on you, Vinnie! For actually participating in the story as asked!

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OP rambling about how a video game doesn’t need to try to tell its story like a video game. Sounds about right

The vast majority of which was largely optional, up to and including the release of the last game in the series, Halo Reach. Then the Dark Times came…

And again. Most of which was not required reading. I would give a guesstimate at about… 5-10% of all players back in those days even knowing those books existed, let alone the percentage who read and played the games.

You mean the vast majority of people playing mutliplayer games?

If your definition of cool and interesting is Chief showing up after the cool and interesting stuff happens to have a blue lady give a wide range of facial expressions as Chief does the most mundane of tasks… Then yes, I suppose that’s quite riveting, isn’t it?

I love that you insinuate that wanting exciting stuff to happen means that the person is low brow.

Where’s that Bender meme when I need it…

And I’m the Duke of Westminster.

Right.

She wasn’t exactly descriptive. I can imagine scavenging for gear in a lot of different universes.

“Am I out of touch? No, it’s the public who are wrong”

Neither was Buck’s. Neither was Mickey’s. Neither was Dutch’s. Neither was Romeo’s. And yet… We played those sections as those characters. Halo 3: ODST was specifically marketed as Rookie’s story, being that Rookie was the “NEW HERO” that the ODST marketing pointed at. For the purposes of narrative cohesion, we played as those characters to experience their stories.

Oh, come on. He finds a discard helmet, and he can magically piece together that Buck was the one running after Veronica, and that he and Romeo were ambushed by an Engineer, after Buck fought through intense waves of Covenant? I suppose the Rookie is an unreliable narrator now, and that we don’t know what really happened despite the game being pretty overt that yes, the flashback you play through, is that of what actually happened.

You’re conveniently writing out the part, because it doesn’t help your narrative, that those flashbacks were supplemented with gameplay that demonstrated what happened for the player. I can envision millions of different gameplay scenarios in my head. I would rather play them than think about them.

Ah yes, the ever so helpful tool of insults, your favorite tool whenever you feel like speaking down to someone, Dodger. Likely in an attempt to elicit an emotional reaction.

My family telling me a story, isn’t me playing a video game. Try again.

I am listening. And I’m bored. I can piece together the clues in something like Dark Souls to figure out the real story, the one that Frampt doesn’t want you to hear about. That’s supplemented with awesome gameplay and fighting giant monsters. I get my cake, and I can eat it too.

With the current narrative, yeah, I can figure it out. But it’s like eating the breading of a cake. Kinda tasty, but I want a lot more. Where’s the frosting, the bits of chocolate and berries that turn sweetened bread into cake?

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Hey, fair enough. I respect that some people really do enjoy pulling together all these disparate sources of media to build a plot.

As a fairly lore invested fan who… plays the game and maybe occasionally reads a wiki entry but that’s it, I feel like what I posted is pretty much all the information I ever got. And again, I’m probably in the 90th percentile of caring about Halo’s plot here. Guess I don’t really count item descriptions as a video game plot, and I’m not sure what the excerpts are you talked about. Even if just for my edification here, could you answer any questions I posed? Where are these Spartans, when are these events happening, and what are they currently trying to do?

Thanks kc!!! I am a long time halo fan. It’s a game I grew up with since I was 5. (Started on halo 2) and so I always keep a keen eye and listen to the story. All the way through and through. I can tell you here and now if I have to play halo 3 when sarge dies I’m crying like a baby :joy: we should play some time. Especially when my Xbox is NOT restricted. Which it is right now because of controlling family so my hands are tied. But, one year I’ll be a legal adult so child restrictions can say bye bye for life!

So as of right now I have just been paying attention to the story and when I’m not I’m focusing on irl.