Would the Halo 5 that was advertised have worked?

There’s a few key things that a lot of the trailers said, pretty unambiguously, would happen in the story.

  1. The Master Chief has a hand in activating the guardians and betrays the UNSC.

  2. The game focuses on a personal conflict between Chief and Locke. Locke is portrayed as having a burning loathing for how the Chief has betrayed humanity.

  3. The Master Chief is shown as doubting wether what he is doing is right and questions if it was worth it; referring to the doom and destruction he unleashed.

Now, given what actually happened in Halo 5, the most likely way this would have played out would be if Cortana tricked Chief into releasing the Guardians; telling him her intentions were benevolent or not revealing what would happen. Chief does this because he trusts Cortana and wants her back. In fact it could be as simple as saying that she can’t come back or will die if she doesn’t gain full access to the Domain. BTW, this could have made her eventual betrayal of him in the Breaking mission much more bitter.

Locke would despise Chief for letting his personal feelings cause, however unintentionally, all this destruction as the Chief would have directly allowed Cortana to attack the Galaxy.

Could that have worked? Maybe, although I think a lot of people would have complained that Chief would have been stupid to have believed Cortana and it is a stretch that she could convince him to leave the UNSC. This only (kind of) happens in Halo 5 because he perceives a threat to Cortana from the UNSC and sees it as his problem alone.

In addition, it would have made Locke appear very unreasonable to not realise that the Chief didn’t realise all of this would happen and still hold him responsible. It would involve putting the player with a one dimensional character who goes on a vendetta against Chief for releasing Cortana rather than focus on the real threat. He would have been a very unsympathetic and unrelateable character.

Another key problem is that whilst IMO this is a very interesting story for Chief it’s still not really that compelling for Locke; especially not if the mission breakdown had been the same with only 3 chief missions. That is just a personal opinion but in the run up to Halo 5 I was always more interested in how this would play out for Chief rather than Locke. His story felt unnecessary and there’s no reason he couldn’t be an NPC like Cpt. Del Rio in Halo 4.

I think they never intended to go with this storyline and it was just a terribly ill advised marketing stunt that’s massively back fired on them. But a major reason against it is that they clearly wanted you to see both characters as the hero and in particular for the new character Locke did not want an arc that would basically have to end with Chief killing Locke. If he blames him for releasing Cortana then I don’t see it playing out any other way. Also it would be very difficult to see the UNSC taking the Chief back if they thought he was responsible for causing all of that death and destruction. This is probably why Cortana in the actual game doesn’t actually need the Chief to carry out her plans; becoming that powerful by herself.

So I don’t think it would have worked or pleased everybody. The problems with the story are I think much broader than the false advertising. Adding Locke and putting such emphasis in the game was a bad idea even in this story.

I think so. I think their “friend or foe” approach was ballsy, and I really wish they stuck with it. Plus, Hunt the Truths story direction was really well done, and it was paced very well. Gave us some more likable characters in the universe.

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> I think so. I think their “friend or foe” approach was ballsy, and I really wish they stuck with it. Plus, Hunt the Truths story direction was really well done, and it was paced very well. Gave us some more likable characters in the universe.

I don’t think it was ever their intention to follow the advertisement. I think they told the ad company to do whatever it took to sell the game. So they clearly invented or made up a story which is only very (and I mean very) loosely based on what actually happens in the game. From start to finish their goal is to save Chief from Cortana.

The only trailer which comes close to what actually happens in Halo 5 is the one with Chief in the desert where he faces down the Guardian with Cortana’s chip.