As the video finished its run, I immediately recognised the voice of the Arbiter, who appears to be aiding a guest, our mysterious ONI Spartan, Agent Locke. But there’s more.
When 343i revealed Halo 5: Guardians a few weeks ago, there were features within the artwork that I instantly recognised: The Sangheili statue, the unusual architecture, and the number of suns in the sky. It all led me to one conclusion, that a good portion of our journey in Halo 5: Guardians will take place on Sanghelios.
Sanghelios? More than likely. The heart of Vadum? Possibly
Above is the familiar concept image created by Sparth in all of its glory. But as you can see in the trailer, where the Arbiter talks to Agent Locke,, we get to see more of this amazing landscape, all but confirming this as the state of Vadum.
An eerily familiar landscape, and a glimpse of the Arbiter, Thel’ Vadum.
So what conclusions can we draw from this? As I’ve said before, when analysing the concept art a few weeks ago, It’s possible that our ONI agent is tasked in locating the Master Chief. And one of the best individuals to see regarding the Chief’s location could well be the Arbiter. But in what context is this desire to seek out the Chief? Is Locke a man who is takes with arresting the Chief, or killing him? Is the study of our famous Spartan-II a way for Locke to better understand John, and then perhaps defeat or apprehend him? It’s hard to say, but I doubt everything here is clear cut.
I’d say the Chief is perhaps tasked with an unsavoury task, perhaps the assassination of Catherine Halsey — the one person who may still be able to save Cortana. It’s clear to me that the Chief would be reluctant to carryout this mission, and instead disappears. Perhaps this was all orchestrated as a means of testing the Chief’s loyalties, or simply asking one of Halsey’s own creations to finish the job. Either way, the Chief is no longer under the command of HIGHCOM or ONI and has embarked upon a deeply personal quest with serve ramifications should he fail. But ONI will either want him back or want him dead, especially with Halsey seemingly aligned with Jul ‘Mdama. Whatever the task, Locke is a man who is seeking out one of the greatest heroes in human history.