Idea: Grunt Courage.

I think at this point, we all love our little buddies, the Grunts. We’ve spent so much time mowing them down in vicious slaughter for so long, i feel it’s time for the grunts to get their own time in the spotlight. I have a few ideas of how this would work hypothetically in a Halo game.

Grunt Courage is a system where a grunt squad’s tactics change based on the leader of the squad.

Brutes: Brutes are the least inspiring of any leader of a grunt squad. When lead by a Brute, Grunts are more aggressive in their tactics, rushing their enemy with reckless abandon, firing their weapons every which way hoping to get a hit, and form a protective ‘meat shield’ formation in front of the brute (Who’s the real coward here?). Grunts lead by a Brute are also more likely to go kamikaze after their leader is defeated.

Elites: When lead by an Elite, grunts adopt more modern infantry tactics such as spreading out in a 5-10 meter radius around the leader to avoid mass casualties by explosives and will run for whatever cover they can find. Grunts will also coordinate their attacks more often. For example, one grunt charges a plasma pistol shot to sap the enemy’s shields while another waits with a needler to supercombine them. Grenadiers as well will refuse to exit the safety of their cover, and will bombard the player from a safe position.

Grunt Ultras: Being lead by a fellow grunt is very inspiring for a grunt squad. Utilizing their superior numbers by adopting more predatory sandwich tactics, grunts lead by an Ultra will form a crescent-shaped ‘death circle’ around their prey to entrap them. Grunt squads lead by an Ultra on average come with about 5-10 grunts per squad, each varying in rank and weaponry.

Deacons: Grunt Deacons are the ultimate role-model for Grunts. Rather than commanding mere squads, Deacons command an entire legion of 20 to 30 inspired and courageous Grunts. Encounters with Deacons are rare but extremely deadly. In the presence of a Deacon, Grunts are given a massive boost of courage beyond that of a Grunt Ultra. Deacons are often found behind the frontlines, commanding legions of Grunts from afar. Killing a Deacon is a simple task in and of itself, the difficult part is wading past their horde of bloodthirsty followers to close in for the kill. Along with their familiar sandwich tactics, Grunts lead by a Deacon are encouraged to fight with whatever they can get their hands on, anything from covenant weapons such as needlers, plasma rifles, and fuel rod cannons, to human weapons like magnums, SMGs, and rocket launchers.

> 2533274926534653;1:
> I think at this point, we all love our little buddies, the Grunts. We’ve spent so much time mowing them down in vicious slaughter for so long, i feel it’s time for the grunts to get their own time in the spotlight. I have a few ideas of how this would work hypothetically in a Halo game.
>
> Grunt Courage is an invisible meter that dictates a grunt squad’s accuracy, grenade frequency, firing rate, and tactics. A grunt squad’s level of courage is dependent on the leader.
>
> Brutes: Brutes are the least inspiring of any leader of a grunt squad. When lead by a Brute, Grunts are more aggressive in their tactics, rushing their enemy with reckless abandon, firing their weapons every which way hoping to get a hit. Grunts lead by a Brute are also more likely to go kamikaze after their leader is defeated.
>
> Elites: When lead by an Elite, grunts adopt a slower, more methodical approach, providing suppressive fire for their squadmates and always looking for cover. In an elite lead squad, grunts are more focused and accurate with their shots and will lob grenades from the safety of whatever cover they can find. They also use their plasma pistol charge more often.
>
> Grunt Ultras: Being lead by a fellow grunt is very inspiring for a grunt squad. Grunt squads lead by a Grunt Ultra are given a much higher boost to accuracy, nade frequency, and firing rate, almost dwarfing that of Elite and Brute lead squads. They also adopt sandwich tactics, using their superior numbers to surround and corner their enemies for a killing blow.
>
> Deacons: Grunt Deacons are the ultimate role-model for Grunts. Rather than commanding mere squads, Deacons command entire legions of inspired and courageous Grunts. Encounters with Deacons are rare but extremely deadly. In the presence of a Deacon, Grunts are given a massive boost of courage beyond that of a Grunt Ultra. Deacons are often found behind the frontlines, commanding legions of Grunts from afar. Killing a Deacon is a simple task in and of itself, the difficult part is wading past their legions of bloodthirsty followers to close in for the kill. Along with their familiar sandwich tactics, Grunts lead by a Deacon are encouraged to fight with whatever they can get their hands on, anything from needlers to plasma rifles to fuel rod cannons.

I have nothing to say about this except flawless idea.

> 2533274926534653;1:
> I think at this point, we all love our little buddies, the Grunts. We’ve spent so much time mowing them down in vicious slaughter for so long, i feel it’s time for the grunts to get their own time in the spotlight. I have a few ideas of how this would work hypothetically in a Halo game.

omg AI revamp for Grunts? Sign me up for that!

> 2533274926534653;1:
> Grunt Courage is an invisible meter that dictates a grunt squad’s accuracy, grenade frequency, firing rate, and tactics. A grunt squad’s level of courage is dependent on the leader.

Then would it be a waste of a skull slot to include a way to visualize that meter as Chief? Just for funsies (like how you could see the enemy hp meter in Wind Waker with the use of a mask). Plus there might be some situations where the leader isn’t apparent (what if there’s multiple Brutes or Elites of the same rank around, without the presence of Chieftains/Generals?) or immediately in sight (they might be holed in deep or on patrol) so if you were to attempt to ambush/stealth the encounter, you could get caught potentially off-guard.

Also, what about their numbers? In the Halo trilogy, you could have up to 20-30 active grunts in certain battles (TnR/AotCR megabattles, Sierra dam, Arbiter: https://streamable.com/yfxwa). I’m assuming the Grunt Deacon’s entourage would number in the 20s at least? Good distinction between Brute/Elite leaderships btw.

This post is awesome, I hope this will be in the game.

Sounds like a good AI implementation to me. Certainly worth a shot.

Put in a Grunt Commissar.

Pretty sure YapYap would be proud of this post, great job OP!

Good little detail.

I imagine they’d fight better around a Grunt Jockey, as well. Wouldn’t mind fighting (Non-boss) Grunt Jockeys in campaign.

> 2533274926534653;1:
> I think at this point, we all love our little buddies, the Grunts. We’ve spent so much time mowing them down in vicious slaughter for so long, i feel it’s time for the grunts to get their own time in the spotlight. I have a few ideas of how this would work hypothetically in a Halo game.
>
> Grunt Courage is an invisible meter that dictates a grunt squad’s accuracy, grenade frequency, firing rate, and tactics. A grunt squad’s level of courage is dependent on the leader.
>
> Brutes: Brutes are the least inspiring of any leader of a grunt squad. When lead by a Brute, Grunts are more aggressive in their tactics, rushing their enemy with reckless abandon, firing their weapons every which way hoping to get a hit. Grunts lead by a Brute are also more likely to go kamikaze after their leader is defeated.
>
> Elites: When lead by an Elite, grunts adopt a slower, more methodical approach, providing suppressive fire for their squadmates and always looking for cover. In an elite lead squad, grunts are more focused and accurate with their shots and will lob grenades from the safety of whatever cover they can find. They also use their plasma pistol charge more often.
>
> Grunt Ultras: Being lead by a fellow grunt is very inspiring for a grunt squad. Grunt squads lead by a Grunt Ultra are given a much higher boost to accuracy, nade frequency, and firing rate, almost dwarfing that of Elite and Brute lead squads. They also adopt sandwich tactics, using their superior numbers to surround and corner their enemies for a killing blow.
>
> Deacons: Grunt Deacons are the ultimate role-model for Grunts. Rather than commanding mere squads, Deacons command an entire legion of 20 to 30 inspired and courageous Grunts. Encounters with Deacons are rare but extremely deadly. In the presence of a Deacon, Grunts are given a massive boost of courage beyond that of a Grunt Ultra. Deacons are often found behind the frontlines, commanding legions of Grunts from afar. Killing a Deacon is a simple task in and of itself, the difficult part is wading past their horde of bloodthirsty followers to close in for the kill. Along with their familiar sandwich tactics, Grunts lead by a Deacon are encouraged to fight with whatever they can get their hands on, anything from needlers to plasma rifles to fuel rod cannons.

AI Revamp for grunts would be awesome. As long as they aren’t as powerful as elites because then what would be the point of having them. Their just gonna be another type of elite. Jackals and grunts have important roles during the storyline and that’s why I think their should be only minor changes and big changes when necessary. But since Halo Infinite is supposed to be a reboot it would be perfect.

This has the potential to bring so much more variety to Covenant encounters. Depending on the leader unit you’re dealing with, you’d have to switch up how you dealt with the underlings. It also would certainly change the notion that all grunts are just tissue paper to cut through. Some would be far more bold in their actions while others are just a bunch of cowards shooting at random. All in all, great idea OP! I hope this is something we can see in Infinite, particularly with the Grunts being an ally to Cortana. If things go the way I think they are going, we will be seeing plenty of them in Infinite.

Updated the list with more specifics, including grunts forming a meat shields around brute, spreading out 5-10 meters around elites, and forming a death circle around prey in the presence of an Ultra.

@OG would you want to chat about other A.I. ideas I have in mind not just for the Covenant but for the Flood and Forerunner Ecumene factions?