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ZingZitang
10-10-2012, 07:52 PM
Halo: The Thursday War released last Tuesday. This is the second book in the Kilo Five trilogy written by Karen Traviss.

I thought we might start up a discussion. Post your thoughts if you've finished the book, or are currently reading it. Or maybe you're curious about it, but beware - Obvious Spoilers are Obvious.

After finishing the book, which takes place in late 2553 - still 4 years from the start of Halo 4(I can't even imagine what will happen during those 4 years!), I felt it was a little short and ended abruptly. But that could be because I thought there were 19 chapters when there are actually only 16. . . The ending wasn't bad though, it makes for a good transition to any continuation.

Personally, there are only a few characters I actually like in the book. And Even though I really Dislike the way Karen Traviss writes Halo - Its a pretty good read. Especially if you're a Halo fan.

I think we can safely assume who founded the Storm Faction that we'll be battling in Halo 4, and why they did so. We also know how/why they find/arrive at Requiem.

We also get hints as to why a certain Forerunner Character is on Requiem.

I really dislike ONI. Even though ONI and Kilo Five's mission has a point to it, I just wish somebody would punch ONI in the face, and tell them to stop dicking up the already tenuous Alliance between Admiral Hood and Thel Vadam.

I also was pretty bummed that Jul didn't die, or end up still captured. Although he's an interesting character, I really just don't like reading from the Bad Guy perspective. Even though through his Story Arch we learn that there are many, many more shield worlds then has even been speculated.
On another note, I hate to think of the Infinity Crashing on Requiem in Halo 4. Such an Amazing ship.

Share your thoughts on the Book!

DarkReign2021
10-11-2012, 12:35 PM
I'm still not completely finished with it, but I think I've gotten the gist of it since I'm at the point where they're returning to Venezia. All in all, I would say it was a step up from Glasslands, but Karen Traviss has a tendency to pander in her writing. 5 paragraphs can be dedicated to say the same thing in 5 different ways. It makes the story seem a lot longer than it really is and I hate that. I will give her credit, though. Her character depth is impressive. I find myself knowing a lot of the characters better than I have in any of the other novels. Osman, Vaz, Mal, BB, Phillips, Dev, Parangosky, and even Hood. I can read them and better predict their motives and responses than I might've if Nylund was writing the story because he was always about establishing the situation and the objective and never much about building the characters. So kudos to Traviss for this success.

I am definitely satisfied that things are finally tying into Halo 4. It's thrilling to know Jul 'Mdama is the force we're fighting and how they found Requiem and how it's confirmed that the Didact did indeed hate humans even though he seemed to be helping them in Primoridum and Cryptum. Be interesting to get our hands on Silentium to see what finally flips that switch in the Didacts mind and how the Librarian takes it (since according to Primordium she's supposedly still alive as well.)

I'll discuss more on this later. Gotta run to work for now. Hopefully I'll find some time to finish the book tonight.

ZingZitang
10-12-2012, 06:56 PM
I find myself knowing a lot of the characters better than I have in any of the other novels. Osman, Vaz, Mal, BB, Phillips, Dev, Parangosky, and even Hood.I agree, these characters are pretty well written. I Dislike ONI however, so its hard for me to like Osman and Parangosky. BB is great though, 'Made of pure Awesomium' as he might say. Phillips so much of Daniel Jackson from Stargate is not even funny.

Be interesting to get our hands on Silentium to see what finally flips that switch in the Didacts mind and how the Librarian takes it (since according to Primordium she's supposedly still alive as well.)
Indeed. It seems the Didact may have been simply manipulating Humans to further his own goal, rather than helping them in Primordium. Either that, or he goes batshit crazy in Silentium.

On the topic of Reunions.
I Wonder if Halsey will still be "Stationed" aboard Infinity in 2557. It would be great to see her reaction to John and Cortana being alive. Regardless of Traviss Demonizing Halsey, I still very much like her.

I also wonder if any member of Kilo Five will have any part in the Reclaimer Trilogy. Naomi, and her Mark VII Armor would be pretty sweet to see.

Getting a little off topic from The Thursday War, I wonder what has happened with The Spartan II's(Kelly, Linda, Fred. . . ) and III's that were rescued from Onyx? We didn't here anything about them in The Thursday War. John absolutely must be reunited with at least some of his remaining Spartan II's.

Surely they're still in Service in 2557. And they've surely thought that John has been dead for Four Years.

DarkReign2021
10-12-2012, 07:57 PM
Osman is seemingly the oddball character because I don't feel the book has given her enough time to develop as a character. She simply hasn't played a role in any of the events in the series so far. She also seems a tad bit too pessimistic for the kind of job she's performing.

Parangosky, on the other hand, I find to be a fascinating character. I can't say I particularly like her (or ONI) but I feel they are a necessary evil in the Halo Universe. Halo, atypical to most Sci-Fi titles, has been about building up the Human Race and trying to save it. Traviss kind of balances it out by using a diverse mix of alien perspective and the evils of ONI to portray both sides of the picture. I find her in particular to be interesting because of her ruthless, but intuitive and oft-times necessary approach on a situation. Her and ONI do a good job of making you question if what they're doing really is necessary. Obviously it's not the right thing to do by any means, but whether or not it's necessary is a totally different point. (and obviously given the events of TTW and Halo 4, I'd say her decision to attempt complete dominance or total Genocide over the Sangheili population was a correct one. The mistake with Jul 'Mdama probably escalated things far more than they needed to be, but the Sangheili majority obviously weren't content with letting the Blaspheming Humans live in peace anyway.

I was actually wondering about the S-IIs and S-III's the whole time. I'm hoping they make an appearance in the next trilogy, but I don't think they'll be in Halo 4. Something tells me that Requiem will only be the stage for the 1st game and that the series will probably return to Earth again at some point. Especially since Infinity has somehow discovered Requiem and I'm sure with the new slipspace comms their location is broadcast 24/7 to Earth Facilities. Even if Infinity is somehow destroyed, I no doubt imagine there are more ships being pumped with Forerunner tech on a smaller scale than Infinity and Chief will no doubt have a fleet to finally take him home in Halo 5 or Halo 6 where all of his Spartans will be waiting for him for one big happy reunion (to kick the Floods ass once and for all.)

Halsey would be an interesting character to include, but I don't feel as though she offers much in the way of developing the storyline. She's obviously played her part and has been given a backseat in the series now. With the story being more about John and Cortana on a personal level I can see her MAYBE playing a brief role since she was a mother figure to him, but there's not a lot she could offer. She's done her damage and that is that.

Having finished the book now, I have to wonder something. It's obviously been confirmed that 'Mdama is going to play a role in Halo 4. I obviously assumed it was going to be Jul, but now I'm also curious about the role his son is going to play. He's also a 'Mdama and we don't know how old he was or how long it takes a Sangheili to mature and become shipmasters. The child seems just as eager to take the fight to the humans as Jul was.

LickableLemons7
10-13-2012, 12:13 PM
I expect to pick my copy up tonight. Seems like you guys are enjoying it more than Glasslands.

Also, RvB isn't considered "canon" is it?
I was thinking of the baby Sanghelli from the later portions of The Blood Gulch Chronicles.

ryano9929
10-15-2012, 06:25 PM
i actually find this to be worse than Glasslands. It is just really boring at times. Not a huge fan of the writing style though.

ZingZitang
10-15-2012, 06:50 PM
I'm hoping they make an appearance in the next trilogy, but I don't think they'll be in Halo 4. Something tells me that Requiem will only be the stage for the 1st game and that the series will probably return to Earth again at some point. Especially since Infinity has somehow discovered Requiem and I'm sure with the new slipspace comms their location is broadcast 24/7 to Earth Facilities. Even if Infinity is somehow destroyed, I no doubt imagine there are more ships being pumped with Forerunner tech on a smaller scale than Infinity and Chief will no doubt have a fleet to finally take him home in Halo 5 or Halo 6 where all of his Spartans will be waiting for him for one big happy reunion (to kick the Floods ass once and for all.)

Halsey would be an interesting character to include, but I don't feel as though she offers much in the way of developing the storyline. Yes, I agree. This was just me being hopeful. It probably wont happen in Halo 4, but I feel it is inevitable for them all to be reunited at some point. I also genreally agree with your opinion of Parangosky and ONI. And from the First Episode of Forward Unto Dawn, we see Infinity pick up Cortana's Distress Signal(With its Fancy Forerunner Tech), and can probably track the Origin with all new Fancy Forerunner technology(If Cortana didn't Include their location in the Distress Signal).

Having finished the book now, I have to wonder something. It's obviously been confirmed that 'Mdama is going to play a role in Halo 4. I obviously assumed it was going to be Jul, but now I'm also curious about the role his son is going to play. I think the generic answer would be to say that He'll continue fighting Humanity, and the War between Sangheili and Humans will extend farther into the Future than one would hope.

But I expect much more of a twist with this Young character. For some reason I see him being somehow involved with Thel Vadam. His role will be interesting to Discover.

I expect to pick my copy up tonight. Seems like you guys are enjoying it more than Glasslands.

Also, RvB isn't considered "canon" is it?
I was thinking of the baby Sanghelli from the later portions of The Blood Gulch Chronicles.Red Vs Blue is hilarious, but not Canon.

And I would say its better than Glasslands in my Opinion. Partly because it sets the stage for Halo 4, and partly because we don't have a squad of Highly trained Super Soldiers(Spartan II's and III's) acting like Highschool girls, and there's much less Halsey Bashing(literally).

MixMaker1
10-18-2012, 05:19 PM
I just finished it. I thought it made Glasslands bearable seeing as it was extremely slow - but she did a phenomenal job fleshing out those characters and story lines for THIS novel.

I love that Jul is hellbent on revenge. It should make interesting when:

Jul leads the Storm towards Requiem and finds Chief's FUD there. Holy hell! The beginning is going to be so intense. The Storm may be more vicious than the Covenant ever was!

ZingZitang
10-18-2012, 07:34 PM
I love that Jul is hellbent on revenge. It should make interesting when:

Jul leads the Storm towards Requiem and finds Chief's FUD there. Holy hell! The beginning is going to be so intense. The Storm may be more vicious than the Covenant ever was!

LOL. Tell me we used the same completely random spoiler code?

But yes, if we confront him right in the beginning, it will be fantastic.

DarkReign2021
10-18-2012, 11:35 PM
LOL. Tell me we used the same completely random spoiler code?

But yes, if we confront him right in the beginning, it will be fantastic.

I'm looking forward to seeing the Dynamics of the Storm during Halo 4 given the fact that the Covenant is dissolved, which technically means the Unggoy and Kig-Yar are no longer obligated to participate. Also interested to see how everything goes over with Jul 'Mdama lying to the entire legion of followers regarding his beliefs and intentions. I wonder what they're response would be if they knew everything that had happened in the Human/Covenant war and the stance that the Arbiter took on their religion and alliance with Humanity.

I'm still disappointed that the Brutes won't be back as another faction in Halo 4. Maybe they'll show up in Halo 5. Perhaps even the Human Rebel factions will show up. We've never actually had any run-ins with them in the series outside of being filler content in Halo Wars Multiplayer, but Glasslands gives me the feeling that the Rebels might be ready to make a play. And with the weakened state that the UNSC is in after the war, a coup, however unlikely, would be feasible. The ships with Forerunner tech are the only thing standing between the UNSC and the Rebels taking over with a new form of government.

MixMaker1
10-18-2012, 11:43 PM
It'll also be interesting to watch what happens with Chief.

In my prediction - I think he'll go against ONI/UNSC to try and save Cortana.

DarkReign2021
10-19-2012, 12:19 AM
I have no doubt the Chief will pick Cortana over the UNSC. Even though he was bred for pure obedience and brilliance in combat, he's ultimately still human and his rationale would be that decommissioning her would be the same as leaving a man behind enemy lines. You NEVER leave a man behind.

I've held onto this theory since Halo 2 came out. In the first game, Cortana was always a chatty and talkative character. This maintains itself up to the the point of returning to her in the Control room on "Two Betrayals." After that point, her behavior had become quite erratic while her chattiness died down a bit. I chalked a lot of this up to her being focused on destroying and escaping the Halo Installation, but I've always wondered if there was something more behind her behavior.

Enter Halo 2. In Halo 2, there was no chattiness. She would make the occassional banter, but otherwise she was a very distant character until the point where she was put inside High Charity's system. At this point she become focused on her task like normal, but only half-heartedly. She threatened to destroy the Halo Installation by detonating In Amber Clad, but ultimately neglected to do so even though the Gravemind was able to assume control of High Charity, which we all found how much danger that put Earth in.

Just as a recap of what we know about A.I's, they have a seven year lifespan. After 7 years they begin to go Rampant, which generally involves corruption in various portions of their code. Rampancy can vary in severity at first, but ultimately all smart A.I will shut down after a certain level of corruption. The seven year lifespan, however, is a generic number determined by ONI specialists expecting the A.I to perform within predictable parameters. The more information an A.I. is exposed to and the more time an A.I is given to think, the faster rampancy will set in.

Now, given what we know about A.I, lets look at Cortana. This is a Generation 3 Smart A.I cloned from the brain of Dr. Catherine Halsey. She still has the base 7 year life expectancy. She was created on November 7th, 2549, meaning her regular expiration date would be sometime in 2556. Halo 4 takes place in 2557, meaning she's already a year past her expiration; However, given all of the information she was fed during her time in the Alpha Halo's control room as well as the information gleaned from the System on High Charity and the Relic on Reach, she has undoubtedly shortend her life span drastically as is. In other words, this bitch is in freak out mode right now.

Getting back to Halo 2, she failed to detonate IAC and destroy Halo even though the Gravemind had taken over. She obviously has a stronger personal desire to live than do what's right for humanity (a personality quirk she picked up from Dr. Halsey perhaps?) For whatever reason, she neglected to destroy Halo and was actually, as we later learned in Evolutions, surprisingly easily seduced by the Graveminds promise of unlimited information and experiences in a world where she would never die. This ultimately ends in her fighting him off long enough for the Chief to return, but the fact still stands that she put her desire to live over everything else. Her survival is second only to the survival of John's (Another quirk given to her by Dr. Halsey?)

Now through the events of Halo 3 and the opening scenes of Forward Unto Dawn, it's obvious Cortana has succumb to the early stages of Rampancy, which in her has resulted in Emotional Mood Swings (emotions being something that A.I aren't supposed to feel due to inhibitors built into their program.) But even still, she's pushing to stay alive and to be with the Chief. As I've mentioned elsewhere on this board, I can't help but feel like there's a reason for this. Entire databases of information previously unavailable to humanity suggests she had to have found something that has piqued her interest. Given her interest in personal suvival and preservation and considering the 100,000+ year life-span of the Monitors, I'm willing to make a guess that Cortana knows, maybe not how, but where she might find the answer to saving her own life. In the footage we've seen of Cortana in Halo 4, we definitely know trying to repair her rampancy is going to be playing a role in the events of the next trilogy, so it seems like a viable prediction to me.

BiggD
10-19-2012, 01:08 AM
I have no doubt the Chief will pick Cortana over the UNSC..........In the footage we've seen of Cortana in Halo 4, we definitely know trying to repair her rampancy is going to be playing a role in the events of the next trilogy, so it seems like a viable prediction to me.

I understood everything you said, but damn...my brain hurts :confused:

DizzFoo23
10-19-2012, 02:11 AM
ya i wanna know what happens to the arbiter and the spartan 2s along with naomi and im also curious to see how engineers play into the game since in the books they seem very crucial