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September 30, 2007

The Halo Story

Although I've never played the games, I recently spent some time reading the Halo story, both on Wikipedia and the Halopedia (which runs MediaWiki, the same software that runs Wikipedia). They are both good sources of information; as might be expected, the Halopedia is more complete, but the Wikipedia pages are better edited.

Ignoring their appeal as games (which is evidently excellent) and reading them purely as science fiction, the story and backstory behind Halo is very detailed and quite good. New Mombasa and its space elevator, the Halos, Reach, the SPARTAN-II project, "glassing"--this is all great stuff (and quite grim at times). In fact a lot of the story IS told in books; the games themselves are only small windows into the larger story.

As a Jack Vance fan I'm not crazy about the names of the people (and aliens), but some of the ships have great names: the human ships Forward Unto Dawn, Pillar of Autumn, and In Amber Clad, and the Convenant ships Ascendant Justice, Seeker of Truth, and of course High Charity...like many things on Wikipedia, it's easy to get slurped into a vortex and spend hours reading about all this.

Posted by AdamBa at September 30, 2007 09:45 PM

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For great ship names try Iain Bank's Culture novels. How about "Frank Exchange Of Views" or "Not Invented Here".


Posted by: Ade Miller at October 1, 2007 07:58 PM

I don't understand the Jack Vance reference. Why would being a Jack Vance fan make you not like the names of the people and/or aliens?

Posted by: peterb at October 2, 2007 12:25 PM

Reading Jack Vance spoils you, because his character names are so well crafted.

- adam

Posted by: Adam Barr at October 3, 2007 04:30 PM