So originally I had this rather large article typed out about how the Scorpio would be a great opportunity for 343 Industries to really nail a Halo game in all aspects. The campaign, the multiplayer, etc. The whole spiel. And I still might publish it. But for right now I’ve decided to offer up a bit of an alternative. Rather than a classic Halo game, why not try another experiment? ODST was an experiment that showed a different side of the war. The one not so easily won because you weren’t a walking tank/jet fighter hybrid. Halo Wars was another, successful, experiment that showed that Halo was not confined to the shooter genre. In this case, why not a first-person horror game?
If you played Halo: Combat Evolved when it first released in 2001, you were one of many players who had no idea what awaited them. There were no hints, no signs as to what dwelled in the bowels of Installation 04. And then the level 343 Guilty Spark came, and you were treated to a horrific sight: The Flood. The stuff of pure unadulterated nightmares. I lost countless nights of sleep because of those things. The thought of a Flood Infection Form burrowing into the chest of a soldier, tearing his insides to shreds and then rapidly mutating his body into a gross zombified mess of fungus and decomposing flesh.
Over the years my fear of the Flood diminished because I became familiar with them. However, that fear came back greater than ever when I read the Halo short story “The Mona Lisa.” Included in the Halo Evolutions short story collection, The Mona Lisa was one of two longer stories. It focused on a group of Marines that had been sent to Installation 04 following the Chief’s return to Earth. They discover The Mona Lisa, a prison ship that had somehow wound up in the debris field of the Halo ring. The story itself is very descriptive, moreso that I would have liked. The way that everything was described created crystal clear images in my head and it was so gross that I think I became sick a few times. If you’re curious about it, then here’s the official animated version:
Getting straight to the point, a Halo horror game could take cues from The Mona Lisa. Put the player in the shoes of a marine who has absolutely no idea what he/she’s in for. Put the player on the Halo ring after the Flood have begun to spread and infect everything, or on a derelict ship that was unlucky enough to have Flood breach its confines. Using the power of the Scorpio, it could be a very terrifying experience. I can scarcely imagine it.