How to Jump Into Halo's Lore Before Halo 5

A guide to the expanded universe lore to help gamers prepare for the story of Halo 5. Focusing on the most important entries.

As Halo 5 grows closer gamers are wondering how to jump deeper into the series lore, this guide will help them navigate those muddy waters

Halo is a series that stands apart from other members of the FPS genre in many ways that has made it such a success. A major part of what sets the series apart from the rest is the depth of its story, campaigns in Halo offer more than nearly any other FPS. The depth of that story grows unbelievably larger when you jump into the series' expanded universe through books and comics. That expanded universe (EU) has been largely ignored by the games in the series before 343i took the reigns but Halo 4, but now Halo 5: Guardians are putting a huge focus on all that lore.

We already know that Halo 5 will star Blue Team, a group of Spartan II's central to the EU, and 343i is promising to delve even deeper. Now gamers who have never dived into the deep end of Halo's stories are wanting to give it a try to get all they can out of the upcoming game. There only problem is figuring out where to start with so much material to choose from, so we've put together this handy guide to lead gamers through the twisting road of Halo's lore.

The first thing gamers should keep in mind is that they don't have to read every comic or book in the Halo EU, in fact they don't have to read any of them. There are two places on the web that offers every bit of info they could ever ask for, the first is Halopedia a giant encyclopedia of everything Halo.

That can be daunting place to navigate for those who don't know where to start which makes the YouTube channel Halo Cannon another great option. There, gamers can find a primer for the major events of the Halo universe that are followed up videos that dive deeper into each one.

Explore the expanded universe with these books and comics

For those who want to fill the time between now and Halo 5's launch on October 27 with the books and comics, here is the best way to make the leap.

The Fall of Reach

Written by Eric Nylund, this book introduces the Spartan II program and a laundry list of important characters including Blue Team and Dr. Halsey. It leads directly into the story of Halo: Combat Evolved and the next title on our list.

The Flood

Written by William C. Dietz The Flood follows the storyline of Halo: CE but also explores the Master Chief's personality helping gamers learn more about the man beneath the helmet. It also gives them a new way to look at the first game in the series.

First Strike

Another novel by Eric Nylund, First Strike directly follows the events of Halo: CE and continues the story that began in The Fall of Reach. This title will answer the question of how Sgt. Johnson and the Master Chief got back to Earth after the destruction of the Halo ring.

Ghosts of Onyx

Eric Nylund's next entry in the Halo universe that introduces the Spartan III program, it also gives gamers a better introduction to the Forerunners and their technology. Most importantly Ghosts of Onyx picks up where the story of First Strike leaves off diving deeper into the story behind important characters.

The Kilo 5 Trilogy

Made up of Glasslands, Thursday War, and Mortal Dictata by best-selling author Karen Travis, this trilogy is a follow up to Ghosts of Onyx and a primer for Halo 4. Kilo 5 looks at the Halo universe in the years after the events of Halo 3 that helps explain what is happening in Halo 5.

Forerunner Saga

Written by the famous Sci-fi writer Greg Bear this trilogy of books is made up of Cryptum, Primordium, and Silentium. The books dive headfirst into the world of the Forerunners, creators of the Halo rings, introducing characters like the Didact and Librarian, who have become central characters to the Halo series.

Halo Escalation

An ongoing comic series, Escalation, picks up after events of Halo 4 continuing the story of the UNSC Infinity. The series is directly leading up to the story of Halo 5, following the Master Chief, Blue Team, and other key characters who will play a major role in the upcoming title.

Halo: Nightfall

A live action series that introduces Agent Locke, the infamous new Spartan stars in Halo 5 alongside the Master Chief. Nightfall will give us all an insight into Agent Locke's background and personality, putting the Spartan hunter in a new light.

This isn't a complete list of Halo's EU, there are other books, comics, and shows that add layers to its expansive universe. The list we have laid out here simply gives gamers what they need to prepare for the story of Halo 5. They can find a complete list and have any of their burning lore questions answered at the subreddit r/halostory.

Image Source: Halopedia


Published Jun. 12th 2015

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