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 The races of the Covenant, All things alien and ugly.
Posted: May 31 2007, 07:19 PM

High commander of the Elite Forces.

Group: The Prophets
Posts: 60
Member No.: 7
Joined: 31-May 07

Many of the alien races conquered by the Covenant are conscripted into, or gradually become part of, the alliance. It is uncertain why the Prophets have purposefully chosen to ignore this pattern concerning humans, and instead attempt genocide on Humanity. The reason they give is that the humans blocked their access to sacred sites; however, a more probable reason for this is that the Prophets view humanity as a threat to their established authority.

Prophets As the highest caste, it is the Prophets who lead the Covenant. Their higher understanding of the Forerunner gives them great egos and religious powers over the Covenant. The fact that the Covenant are religious zealots makes it all the more easy to control them. The only known word for them in the Covenant Language is Prophet but they are sometimes referred to as the hierarchs or holy ones.
Brutes are the newest species to the Covenant and are the only race that has obtained equal status to that of one of the founding “clients” of the Covenant pact, the Elites. Their strength can match and even surpass that of Elites. They have an incredible natural resilience to damage that makes up for their lack of Energy Shields, and use a weapon known as the Brute Shot. They are equal to Elites in battle and rank. After the Elites were replaced for failing to protect Regret from the Master Chief, they took over their role as personal bodyguards of the Prophets. They have a hairy, ape-like appearance. They are called Jiralhanae in the Covenant language.
Elites serve as the military leaders for the Covenant. While Prophets often have the last say, it is the Elites who organize military campaigns and naval engagements. Ship Masters command the mighty space fleets; Field Masters command the vast armies. Elites maintain the military structure of the Covenant and ensure the Prophets' orders, as well as their own, are carried out. Elites are a much needed species for the Covenant to function, they are the only caste who can build and command the star ships and have the military know-how to ensure successful victories and keep the lesser Covenant species in order. They are called Sangheili in the Covenant language.
Hunters work hard in their role as Covenant muscle, and never disobey orders. Hunters are dismissive and contemptuous of their foes, and in fact, they will only associate with Elites, recognizing and respecting the similar warrior mentality. Hunters are deployed almost like heavy munitions. Due to their 12 foot height, extremely strong armor and strength, and their arm mounted Fuel Rod Gun, other Covenant will often clear the area of deployment, since Hunters are unconcerned with collateral damage, they may even purposely kill the lesser castes, simply for “getting in the way”. They are called Lekgolo in the Covenant Language.
Drones are another race of the Covenant. Their physique is weak but they make up for it in their large numbers. They also have the ability to fly for short amounts of time, using wings concealed within their backs under folds of skin. They are very insect-like. The Covenant generally employ them in zero-gravity operations, where they can fly for indefinite amounts of time, or in vacuum. This suggests that, unlike most other Covenant races, the Drones do not require an oxygen-nitrogen atmosphere. They are called Yanme'e in the Covenant language.
Jackals are the scouts of the Covenant, with their superior senses. They are 5'8" tall and carry a relatively weak, but nonetheless effective energy shield and Plasma Pistol or a single Beam Rifle. Their appearance is bird-like. They are called Kig-yar in the Covenant language.
Grunts are the workhorses of the Covenant, as the name implies. Despite their obvious cowardice and stupidity, they are extremely large in numbers, which may have been why an Arbiter was needed to quell the Grunt Rebellion. They breathe a methane mixture and thus must wear a large tank on their backs full of the gas. They fight well in plasma turrets and use the Plasma Pistol and Needler, sometimes wielding the Fuel Rod Gun as well. They are called Unggoy in the Covenant language.


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The Unggoy (Latin, Monachus frigus) are a species of subordinate warriors in the unified conglomerate races of the Covenant. The Humans have termed such warriors Grunts, because of their speech patterns and their status in Covenant society.

Grunts are the lowest-ranked species of the Covenant hierarchy, forming the bottom-most of all the castes. They are often pressed into combat and manual labor. Furthermore they are typically poor and cowardly warriors, are physically diminutive, wear minimal armor, and most of them are tactically inept and poor shots. However, what they lack in ability they make up for with sheer numbers.

They are unusual in that they breathe methane rather than oxygen. Their combat armor is even integrated with a methane rebreather system, as Grunts appear to be unable to survive long without methane due to asphyxiation much like humans without oxygen.

Grunts were one of the original races of the Covenant, serving as soldiers, laborers, and "cannon fodder" in all different fields. Their original culture has been all but erased by their incorporation into the Covenant, which occurred 3,517,192 hours (about 402 years) before the events of Halo 3, roughly coming to their reindoctrination in 2142 on the Military Calendar. Before joining the Covenant, the Unggoy had yet to attain tier 4 technology. While not overly intelligent or creative, they are one of the most sociable of the Covenant races. They possess a strong pack mentality, often associating with each other in groups, which causes them to present a danger when encountered in large numbers because of their tenacity and ferocity.

Grunts are essentially a slave race, who obey the other Covenant races out of fear, because they have no political power in Covenant society. However, within the Grunt community there is a strong hatred of other species, especially Jackals. It has been indicated that at some time in the Covenant's history, in one of the nine ages, there was a Grunt Rebellion, which was quelled, thanks in part to an Arbiter who was named during that period for that purpose. This fear also leads to a lack of political loyalty and during the Covenant Civil War the Grunts did not ally with a particular side and stayed with whoever was commanding them, most likely out of subservient fear to their masters though many held support for the Elites and still revered The Arbiter.
Due to their low status, Grunts are not permitted by the Elites to possess family names. They do value their ties to their offspring, but are usually separated from their families at an early age by the requirements of their service to the Covenant. The Grunts resent this greatly, but are unable to muster any response. It is also interesting to note that Grunts do appreciate many of the luxuries presented to them in their service to the Covenant, one of them being heat, as stated by the Grunt Kwassas.

In the meantime, the Grunts generally follow a few short, simple guidelines given to them by the Elites; namely "When in doubt, shoot" or "Stay out of the way, live another day."

Grunts feel safe when in large numbers or led by an Elite, though if the Elite or most of the squad dies, or if a superior enemy gets too close, they tend to panic and flee. This renders them extremely vulnerable as they are rather sluggish, but given the time, they will turn around and once again attempt to fight back against the enemy. Higher-ranking Grunts typically have superior morale and are less likely to panic.

It should be noted that the Heretic Grunts, unlike their mainstream brethren, will not flee in combat if the enemy approaches. It is unknown why Heretic Grunts have better morale than other Grunts. One possible explanation could be that the enemy is the Arbiter, and the Grunts have had experience with the Elites. This can be ruled out because in Halo 3, Grunts will run from the Arbiter. Another way they could have obtained a higher morale than the Covenant Grunts could be that they are allowed more freedom or a higher status, since they are not bound by the exact same caste system in the Covenant. They could also have found their heresy as a good cause to fight, and therefore draw their strength from that, or a combination of this and the fact that they are not constrained by Covenant society. Alternately, they could be better trained and disciplined than rank-and-file Grunts, or their behavior could simply be the result of their situation.

It is also important to note that in Halo 3, the Grunts are more courageous than beforehand. Fighting more ferociously and are seemingly more hostile to the enemy. In the level Sierra 117 a marine comments on the fact that even the Grunts weren't pushovers when led by the Brutes. The Arbiter replies that their new-found courage is a result of fearing their new Brute masters, who are more cruel and primal than the Elites. Another idea is that the Brutes mixed a gas into the methane tanks to make the Grunts more aggressive, as suggested by a marine. The Grunts also have tendencies to ignite two plasma grenades and suicide bomb the enemy.

After the events of Halo 3, Grunts were freed from their slavery in the covenant and allowed to return to their worlds but they remain in the elite goverment jurastiction. Ironically, the surviving Grunts that still fought for the Brutes and Truth during the Covenant civil war got exactly what they wanted: Freedom from the Covenant.

The intelligence of Grunts has often been hotly debated as much of the source material contradict one another. In the Eric Nylund novels they have been described as dog-like and animalistic but at rare moments, intelligent, such as the Grunt that inadvertently activates the Nova Bomb. In Halo: The Flood Grunts are shown to be much more intelligent, pulling off military maneuvers and other actions, such as their attempting to put a grenade into Master Chief's suit and Yayap who has a higher than normal intelligence for a Grunt. In game, their battlefield tactics are rather simplistic, but they are more than capable of using a variety of weapons and in Halo 3 pilot vehicles such as the Ghost. It is also worth considering that as a slave race, they are most likely purposely left untrained and uneducated to make them easy to control. Grunts seem to outnumber the other races to a large degree and might offer impressive resistance if properly organized. Grunts have been called "Cannon Fodder" because in crisis times, Elites will send them in as a distraction. On very, very rare occasions, sleeping Grunts will say "Mmm Jackal stew."

A popular Unggoy game is Hunting Rock, a game where the goal is to kill any local pest.

Grunts, like humans, have discovered that inhaling certain fumes can make them "high," and one of their favorites is Benzene, which has been described as "lovely lung gold."

Grunts are approximately 5 feet tall and are relatively weak when compared to other Covenant species, although they can easily walk either upright on two legs, or on all fours. While carrying arms, they are forced to walk upright so that they may support their weapons with their hands, but while trying to flee, or while patrolling without a weapon drawn, they will discard their weapons and use their over sized arms as forelegs to add speed or stability to their gait.

Grunts' forearms are incredibly oversized, as are their calves, while their upper arms and thighs are incredibly minute. The only way for them to even be able to move like this is if their biceps and triceps are in their forearms and calves, although why they would evolve like this is unknown. This may, however, have to do with the claws that protrude from some of their joints, as the extra mass would add to the force used when melee-ing with the claws.

Grunts have hooves on their three-toed feet, and their skin is leathery and purple-gray. They have a single claw that protrudes from each elbow and knee, but its function is unknown, since there are no known instances where it was used in combat. While they are small and are not agile, they are quite sturdy, and most may be weak, as they seem to be unable to carry a weapon heavier than a Plasma Rifle, although certain Grunts of higher ranks appear to be surprisingly strong, able to carry an undeployed Plasma Cannon or fire a Fuel Rod Cannon without toppling from the recoil. However, physical strength may not actually go along with rank; the types of weapons available to them may be a part of a "trust" issue with the other Covenant. As rank-and-file Grunts are clumsy and tactically inept, more powerful weapons are likely only issued to those who are more disciplined and experienced.

.In a recent Bungie update, they said that Grunts reproduce frequently. This might explain why there are so many Grunts on the battlefield. This combined with the large number of young per clutch and rapid sensory motor integration development was one of the primary reasons why the species were given the role of disposable cannon fodder. Their unburdened neural pathways allows them to absorb knowledge more freely compared to their peers. As such, they are constantly monitoring the void for traces of Human communication and have developed an understanding of one or two Human languages. This was both a source of pride and stress to them.

Grunts also have average eyesight and hearing, but they seem to have a very well developed sense of smell, sometimes sniffing the air to detect traces of foes. This is facilitated through the olfactory membranes installed in their masks.

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The homeworld of the Grunts, Balaho, is a cold, swampy planet with a methane atmosphere and naturally occurring pillars of fire. The cold nature of their planet makes them highly covet of any source of heat they can find.

A Grunt, as depicted in the Bestiarum.Since their natural environment is methane-filled, they have to carry tanks of methane in their environment suits to breathe. Without this breathing apparatus, they will suffocate in a "normal" atmosphere. They have also been seen inhabiting large environment domes that have airlocks and methane filters for them to breathe while not in armor or restocking their methane reserves at Battlefield Methane Tanks. Grunts also have high-pitched and squeaky voices, possibly due to acclimation to prolonged methane gas exposure. These voices are commonly regarded as humorous by other races.

Grunts also have thick, luminescent, light-blue blood, possibly a result of methane-based binding proteins in the blood to facilitate methane-based respiration.

Furthermore, Grunts are known for their frequent naps, even sleeping in high-risk combat environments, sometimes even in open daylight or immediately after an enemy has retreated. Whether this is a product of their methane-based metabolism is unknown.

Their home planet was nearly glassed in the Grunt Rebellion.

Grunt Ultra: Grunts that appear to be field commanders for other Grunts, and wear distinctive pearlescent white armor reminiscent of the Ultra Elites. While they appear to have some authority over lesser-ranked Grunts (besides Special Operations Grunts, who are of a different jurisdiction), they have no control whatsoever over the other Covenant races. Grunt Ultras are also stronger opponents than their subordinates, and are more accurate with firearms, throw Plasma Grenades often, and have heavier armor, making them able to sustain more damage than most other Grunts. They never run, and, when present, other Grunts do not run either. Grunt Ultras mostly sided with the Covenant Separatists.

Special Operations Grunt: Experienced and specially-chosen Grunts that wear distinctive jet-black armor and are commanded by Special Operations Elites. They are part of the Covenant Special Operations division of the Covenant Separatists Special Warfare Group. Special Operations Grunts are extremely skilled in warfare compared to the Grunt species, and rarely panics in combat situations, if they do at all. They are sometimes seen wielding Fuel Rod Cannons, and they throw Plasma Grenades more often than lesser Grunt ranks, as well as throwing them more accurately. Almost all, if not all of the Special Operations Grunts sided with the Arbiter and Covenant Separatists during the Covenant Civil War.

Grunt Heavy: Specialized Grunts wearing green armor often deployed in defensive actions whose primary purposes are to deploy Plasma Cannons and man them, but occasionally wield Fuel Rod Cannons as well. Additionally, they also have been seen operating/driving Ghost vehicles.

Grunt Major: Veteran Grunts that wear crimson armor. They sometimes command several Grunt Minors and are slightly more skilled in combat and courageous than Grunt Minors, though this difference is not substantial.

Grunt Minor: The lowest-ranking Grunts, and wear orange armor. They are often times the least threatening and most cowardly, and are often inaccurate shooters, and when their commanding Elite is killed, will often break formation and flee.
Posted: Jun 7 2007, 06:10 PM

Special Ops Ultra

Group: Members
Posts: 34
Member No.: 10
Joined: 7-June 07

Nicking your post again


The Kig-yar (Latin Perosus latrunculus)[1] are an avian species which serve the Covenant. Humans have termed these creatures Jackals, as they are known for their swiftness and viciousness. Jackals serve as snipers and scouts within the Covenant due to their exceptional senses of sight, smell and hearing. They were the first Covenant species encountered by the UNSC.

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They commonly carry Plasma Pistols, but may also be found carrying Plasma Rifles, Needlers and Carbines. Sniper Jackals are equipped with Particle Beam Rifles or Covenant Carbines for maximum damage and range, in addition to a Plasma Pistol for close combat. In addition, all but the snipers carry a powerful handheld energy shield. The most effective way of killing them is to throw a grenade behind their shield or to melee-attack them. At 5'8", Jackals are somewhat smaller than the average human.

Unlike Humans or Elites, Jackals are not brave and are by no means willing to give their life for the good of the Covenant. For example, when you approach a sniper jackal, it will drop its weapon, pull out its plasma pistol and start running away. They are aggressive, and this is due mostly to the fact that they are merely mercenaries, rather than religious fanatics. In battle, Jackals share many similarities with Grunts. Like Grunts, they are a weak subordinate race and are somewhat cowardly. Despite their efforts to assure the Covenant of their superiority over the Grunts, they often cower in battle and run away with their shields up in the air. This is not done nearly as often as the Grunts, but still happens.

Unlike races such as the Grunts, the Kig-yar were space-faring long before joining the Covenant. As such, the Jackals are unique among Covenant species: rather than faithful followers of the Prophets' religion, they are mercenaries working for the Covenant and pay only the barest lip service to the Great Journey. However, due to the long time they have been in the Covenant it is possible some or many have accepted the Covenant religion. In their quest for profit, Jackals frequently operated as "privateers" (with commissions granted by the Ministry of Tranquility).[4] As they are not faithful to the Covenant religion, Kig-yar will sometimes keep valuable Forerunner artifacts to themselves without telling the Prophets to sell later. As most of the other member species would consider this heresy, they probably only sell these artifacts among their own.

The Halo 3 Bestiarum states that the Kig-yar government type is postindustrial capitalism, with a population of 978 million.

When inducted into the Covenant, the Kig-yar were intended to replace the Grunts as the Covenant's footsoldiers; but the temperament of the Jackals made such a change impractical. Instead, they were placed in roles that suited their abilities better such as scouts and being in teams of commando units which allowed the exploitation of their fine senses in the battlefield. They are also deployed as police forces on occupied worlds, although this was always done under the supervision of a member of the higher castes. The reason for this duty was unclear - it is not known if the Covenant feel that the Grunts could not be trusted with such roles or if the predatory nature of the Jackals allowed them a greater ability to police planets.

Jackals have little status in the Covenant hierarchy, and are subservient to all but the Grunts. Although they technically stand as equals with the Grunts, the reality is that Jackals are usually in an elevated position. While the other races consider the Grunts beneath notice, the Jackals are often purposefully cruel to them in order to assure themselves of their own superiority.

Like the other lower caste members of the Covenant, the Jackals are not represented on the High Council but are instead vetted by the Ministry of Concert. However, unlike the other castes, the Kig-yar do not vocally complain about their position but instead have chosen to siphon off resources to their brothers but whether the Covenant leadership was aware of this is unknown.

Jackals are not permitted by the Elites to have more than one name, but Jackal society had never placed a premium on such things, so they don't care. Jackal names are invariably single syllable, with two consonants and one vowel, such as Yeg, Jak, and Bok. The ranking authorities in Covenant society have been known to feed prisoners to Jackals, perhaps indicating that the Jackals are more bloodthirsty and cruel than previously seen in combat.

Jackal Ranger: Jackal Rangers are now a defunct section of the Covenant ranks. They once operated alongside Ranger Elites, but it is speculated they have since been replaced by Drones. In Halo: Combat Evolved there are Jackals with helmets on. These could have been pseudo rangers.

Jackal Sniper: Jackal Snipers have gray armor and do not carry energy shields, as both their hands are used to operate Beam Rifles or Carbines, the Covenant long range sniper weapon. On the Heroic and Legendary difficulties, one shot may be all it takes for a beam rifle to kill the player. However, if sufficient distance is closed, they may drop their Beam Rifle and bring out a Plasma Pistol as they retreat from an advancing opponent. In Halo 2 they can also be identified with having gray clothing under their armor and are easily seen because of their bright crimson/violet eyes that tend to stand out. In Halo 3, the Carbine wielding Jackals are not normally referred to by players as "Sniper Jackals" either being "Marksmen Jackals", "Ranged Jackals", "Carbine Jackals" and "Rifle Jackals".

Jackal Major: Jackal Majors are slightly more elevated and are signified by an orange shield and orange armor. Not much is different about their appearance other than their shield color and, in Halo 2, the clothing under their armor, which is orange. They fire charged plasma pistol shots more often than minors. In Halo 3 these Jackal carry purple Jackal point defense gauntlets.

Jackal Minor : Jackal Minors are signified by a blue/cobalt armor and turquoise arm shield and serve as general infantry. In Halo: Combat Evolved some also had very dark green, almost black skin, and a distinct, curved head. In the first Halo game, many had helmets as well. They occasionally attack with a charged plasma pistol shot, depleting the player's shields.

Jackals are vaguely avian in appearance, with feather-like quills on their heads and arms on males and calloused plates on females for protection from males during mating, and taloned, bird-like feet. Jackal Majors seem to be more muscular than Minors, with larger biceps and chests. They have three fingers on each hand including an opposable thumb. Jackals have exhibited both beaks and needle sharp teeth. Such a great variation may be indicative of two species of Jackal.

Though they are not a low-g species, they do have many qualities that are shared with species from low-g worlds. The female of the species lack the spiny plumage (said plumage's colour serving as indication of the Jackal's mood) of the male; replacing it with calloistic plates at the forearms and the rear of the head. Aside from the obvious differences in reproductive organs, the male and female of the species are more or less identical in appearance with no physical disparity or mass distribution between the sexes.

Although their teeth are not completely canine like. ONI scientists have noted a great variance in skin tone and color between Jackals, usually a dark orange or green, and some are mottled or spotted with markings of various color. The purpose of color variation in Jackals is unknown, though it has been speculated to be tribal tattooing or camouflage suitable for their home world. Although the Jackals vary in skin color, their blood is purple in color similar to that of Elites, possibly showing a similar genetic or chemical makeup.

Though they are mainly carnivorous in appearance and indeed are known to consume flesh, apparently even that of other sentients, the Kig-Yar are omnivorous. They will eat fruits including an unknown type of melon that may be native to their homeworld.

Jackals seen thus far in the games have been predominantly left-handed; none have been seen wielding a firearm with their right hand. All Jackals wear their shields on their right arm.

The boots that Jackals wear are shaped similarly to the feet of birds. The number of bird-like physiological traits could be an indication of Avian ancestry. Several other bird features include keen eyesight, three fingers like the first birds and possibly hollowed bones because they are fragile against melee attacks.

Because of their avian physiology and the hollow structure of their bones and lack of large calcium deposits, Jackals cannot be mutated by the Flood. The lack of calcium in their skeletons also makes them a poor source of food for potential Flood forms.

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Posted: Jan 1 2008, 11:26 PM

High commander of the Elite Forces.

Group: The Prophets
Posts: 60
Member No.: 7
Joined: 31-May 07


The Yanme'e (Latin Turpis rex), also referred to by Humans as Drones, are a race of aerial warriors which make up part of the unified conglomerate races of the Covenant. They are informally referred to by infantry as "buggers". Although they have been part of the Covenant for some time, they have just recently been put to use as combatants in the war against the humans. In the Halo 2: Collectors Edition instruction manual it is said they are suited to flight and combat in a gravitational-pull like Earth.

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In Halo 3, the Arbiter tries to convince a single Drone that the Prophet of Truth is misleading his species and will cause the "destruction of all their hives", showing that Drones live in hives.

Drones are insectoid and are covered in natural chitinous armor, although it doesn't provide that much protection. If you look carefully at a dead Drone, you can see small round technological/metal objects on its armor, assumed by some to be small shield generators employed to make up for the Drones' obvious weakness. It seems like other Covenant species, Drones share a ranking system in colored armor, but it is unclear who is leader. They do not interact with other species except to trade and serve in a military capacity, and their exact position in the Covenant Hierarchy is relatively unknown, although it is reasonable to believe they are of higher rank than Grunts and of lower rank than Elites.

After the Covenant Civil War began, the Drones took the side of the Brutes.

The Drones, much like the Grunts, are a conquered race that was forced into service by the Covenant. They strictly follow the Covenant religion and obey any command without question, yet do not partake in social norms due to communication difficulty with other species. They view the Prophets as "Queens", a remnant of their former hive lifestyle.

Drones are deployed in battle situtations among Covenant Loyalists. They, unlike all other types of Covenant, can fly. They're used for surprise aerial assaults, such as catching them off guard and causing them to shoot upwards as a diversion so that others may attack on the ground. This is a common Covenant tactic used to wipe out a whole squad of Marines.

Drones are an insectoid species first encountered as a combatant by human forces during the Battle of Harvest. They are covered in a natural chitinous exoskeleton that provides some protection from ballistic and plasma based weaponry.

Their exoskeleton is covered with multiple bumps, grooves, indentations and markings. Many of the markings appear to be of use as camouflage. On close inspection these markings bear resemblance to a head. This is reminiscent of many Terran insect species that bear markings that confuse predators into attacking less vital parts of their anatomy. This is indicative of the evolutionary path the Drones have taken, that they still bear the markings of their ancestry. They have the six limbs of an insect (although the last two appear vestigial), compound eyes and two furry antennae that jut forth from a small head. Drones also have peculiar light green blood.

Drones are fast airborne marksmen, and they athletically make a hard target to hit. Drones make aerial assaults and attack in groups. However they are used in conjunction with other Covenant forces.

Drones are capable of powered flight, and have hovering capabilities. Using two large wings stowed beneath a protective carapace the Drone is able to take flight. However they can only do so for short periods of time before clinging to walls or landing for a period of rest. Drones are used to much more limited flight, as their homeworld's gravitational pull is twice as strong as Earth's.

Drones are both fast and agile and pose a serious threat to enemies unused to dealing with aerial infantry. Although they possess sharp claws on their hands and spikes across the majority of their body, Drones shy away from close combat, preferring hit and run airborne attacks.

Due to their hard chitinous outer shells, Drones would be difficult to infect by Flood Infection Forms. Also, perhaps because they lack large amounts of calcium they would not be infected at all.

Drones prefer to stay at a distance and use long range tactics. However, they are skilled close-range combatants as well if the need arises. They always appear in swarms, and usually in large, open areas, where, combined with their agility, they are hard to target effectively. Drones also have the distinction of being able to board vehicles. They do not seem capable of driving them, but will claw mercilessly at the driver until he is killed. Their capability for limited flight allows them to easily weaken an enemy and retreat as necessary when in danger.

They wield lightweight weapons such as the Needler and Plasma Pistol, though they never charge up a shot of their Plasma Pistol to break a shield. They also enter battle in a pack (the number differs depending on the difficulty). Furthermore, they are not susceptible to headshots, though sniper weapons will always kill them with a single shot regardless of where it hits them. This is most likely due to a natural physical weakness, as the sniper rifle's shot would likely travel straight through the exoskeleton and cause the Drone to go in shock. Drones never dual wield or have heavy weapons because they can only become airborne while lifting a small amount of weight. When fighting, they have to take frequent rests while in the air, probably due to the gravitational pull from Earth and High Charity. However it is unknown if they can last longer while in space. They are said to have replaced the Elite Rangers after the Covenant Civil War began, probably due to their inherent maneuverability and skill in zero-G combat.

On Easy and Normal difficulty, the Drones are easy to kill and present no real threat. However, on Legendary, they can be an extremely deadly enemy to face. Their ability to fly means that if you have cover, they can still fly over and around you, and due to the reason they fight in packs, they can outnumber and kill you very quickly.

In Halo 3, Drones have the ability to lift Marines from the ground, similar to the Brutes

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Posted: Jan 1 2008, 11:39 PM

High commander of the Elite Forces.

Group: The Prophets
Posts: 60
Member No.: 7
Joined: 31-May 07


The Jiralhanae (Latin, Servus ferox) are a race of ape-like creatures in the unified conglomerate races of the Covenant. The Humans have termed such warriors Brutes. They are an extremely savage race in general.

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The Brutes have been around since the time of the destruction of the planet Harvest , yet driven into the background of society by the Elites. They seem to have high aspirations, and are extremely over-zealous in their belief of the Covenant's Great Journey. They became the Honor Guards of the Prophets after the High Prophet of Regret was slain by the Master Chief, resulting in the removal of the Elites from this traditional role. They protect the Prophets fiercely. They first appeared in the Sacred Icon level, but the only ones seen here are dead bodies. The first level you encounter them alive is Gravemind.

Brutes are of Simian origin. They have thick, gray skin, and are covered with matted, black, tan, brown or white fur-like hair, the hair will change to a greyish silver color as they age. They have very sharp teeth and sometimes use them as a weapon. Standing nine feet tall, they are immensely strong (to the point of overpowering a SPARTAN in MJOLNIR armor in hand to hand combat, at least in raw strength) and fight hand-to-hand if they ever lose their weapon [3]. The Brutes, with the exception of Tartarus (who perhaps channeled it from Forerunner technology during activation), did not use energy shielding in Halo 2. In Halo 3, most are equipped with Power Armor.

They seem to prefer using weapons from their native homeworld rather than the Covenant standard-issue plasma-based firearms. Brute weapons are notable for being highly dangerous and almost always featuring a blade attachment such as the Spike Rifle, Mauler, and the Brute Shot.

Examples of Brute names are Tartarus and Bracktanus. In Contact Harvest, it was revealed that the "us" at the end of their name is an honorific denoting maturity. For example, Tartarus would have been known as Tartar.

The Brutes have a primitive cultural structure, and are split into tribes called "packs", all led by a single "Chieftain". A Brute becomes pack Chieftain by challenging the current Chieftain to a mortal duel; the victor claims the title.

In general, Brutes have a pronounced dislike of the Elites. They believe that they can protect the Prophets better than them, and the Prophet of Truth used this to begin the Covenant Civil War during the events of Halo 2.

In many military records, Brutes are referred to as 'Bravo Kilos', since UNSC Marines have nicknamed Brutes 'Baby Kongs', a reference to King Kong of 20th century fame.

Brutes are a physically imposing enemy to face in combat. Standing at approximately 8-9 feet tall, they tower over their human opponents, and the majority of their Covenant allies. They have thick, grey skin that is resistant to damage.

They are covered in a thick, shaggy fur that may offer further protection. It covers most of the body except for the head and the shoulder blades. Brutes exhibit two colorations: brown and grey. This is perhaps an indication of age, since lower ranking Brutes are brown and Honor Guard Brutes and Tartarus himself are grey. In Halo 3, they are seen with shaved faces, which increases the fearful effect they have on opponents.

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Note that Brutes in Halo 3 have shaved faces and a carefully groomed beard.Brutes have mixed red-and-blue blood (on first glance they look completely red, but on closer inspection one would see blue spots in pools of Brute blood. It is probably because Brutes have mixed blood content (iron for red color and copper for blue color). It is possible that when a Brute dies, the blood separates into these colors (just like plasma separates from red blood when left in a test tube), and naturally it's mixed, to possibly give it a dark purplish color.

Heavily muscled and possessed of an animalistic brutality and power, Brutes can rely on close combat to defeat their enemies, even more so than their Elite counterparts. Featuring characteristics Simian, Ursine and alien, their appearance matches their human given name.

Brutes have four digits on each hand including an opposable thumb. As such this allows them to make use of a variety of weapons both of Covenant and human design. Their feet have only two digits on each side. When it comes to ranged conflict Brutes show a tendency to use large, rapid firing, often powerful weapons. This may be indicative of their mentality and an extension of their brutal nature. The many spikes and serrated edges that adorn their race's weapons, vehicles and armor further exhibit this.

Brutes are by no means as stupid as they appear, and are often cunning tacticians. As such they can pilot vehicles, ships and command both land based and fleet encounters with strategic competence, if lacking in artistic flair.

Brutes are known to descend into a berserk killing rage when all their packmates have been killed. Their incredible physical strength coupled with a dogged self determination to kill their target makes a berserking Brute a force to be reckoned with, powerful enough to occasionally kill Hunters.

An interesting thing to note is that Brutes in Halo 2 have furry heads while Brutes in Halo 3 Mohawks and beards.

Despite their savagery, Brutes have proven intelligent enough to achieve spaceflight and space-faring status, though their warlike nature meant they quickly collapsed into civil war, forced to climb their way back to their former status, learning nothing from the experience. Their warrior culture makes them formidable opponents, even for Elites, and they were incorporated into the Covenant. Their warrior culture is apparently patriarchally oriented, with rank measured by success, and success measured in terms of battlefield and sexual prowess. No (noticable) female Brutes have been seen serving in the Covenant military. Brute names are composed of two parts: the main part, e.g. "Tartar", with "us" added to signify that the individual has been in combat, giving the whole name "Tartarus."

Brutes are obviously carnivores, given their fearsome fanged jaws and propensity for violence. It has been stated that they feed on the flesh of their enemies, such as the UNSC Marines they face in battle, and have been seen eating the meat of a "Thorn Beast," apparently considered a delicacy among Brutes.

As part of the Covenant, Brutes were required as a prerequisite to convert to the Prophets' religion of worshipping the Forerunners. Previously, their culture revolved around the worship of totems and idols, but they made swift converts. As it is, the Brutes are now the most fanatical adherents to the Prophet's faith, evidenced by their continued belief in the Great Journey.

Even at a glance, the Brutes are the most primitive members of the Covenant, at least technologically. Though they employ Power Armor, and use a selection of the Covenant's weapons such as the plasma rifle, their native technology is crude, propelling "spike" projectiles, often fitted with vicious metal blades for melee combat. The Prowler incorporates some anti-gravity mechanisms, but the Chopper uses two projectile cannons and an actual "wheel" in its systems.

Doisac is the name of the Brute homeworld. It possesses three satellites: Warial, Solrapt and Teash, and is the fourth planet of the Oth Sonin system. The gravity on the planet was approximately 2.0G while the atmosphere was 1.3 atm. Surface temprature was between -15C to 52C. The estimated population of the planet was approximately 12.5 billion. Its habitat is described as being dominated by magma and magnetism.

Unlike Elites, who are masterfully skilled tacticians, the Brute combat mentality relies on overwhelming force and firepower to kill its opposition. Most Brute packs encountered in Halo 3 will often consist of 4-6 individuals; the number of each type of individual varies with the difficulty being played. Often these packs will consist of 1 Brute Captain, 1-2 Brute Majors and 2-3 Brute Minors. It can be twice that many if there is a chieftain in command near by.

Whilst patrolling, Brutes exhibit a sense of calm and confidence, some have been found testing captured human weaponry whilst in this relaxed state. Once engaged in combat the Brutes hunch into a more apelike stance and begin firing upon their target(s). Often the target is subjected to a barrage of fire and explosives in excess of what Elites and Grunts can muster.

Brutes rely primarily on their own technology. They are initially found wielding Brute Plasma Rifles to deadly effect. These faster firing variants on the standard Plasma Rifle suit the Brute mentality well. Higher ranking members of the pack (often Captains) are fond of using the Brute Shot allowing a Brute pack to lay down a withering hail of explosive fire on an enemy position. In the later months of the Covenant Civil War, they become much better equipped, with many weapons of their own make such as Spikers and Incendiary Grenades.

Like the Elites, the Brutes can pilot most vehicles including Ghosts, Spectres, Banshees, and Wraiths. Brutes also have the ability to Board vehicles. In Halo 3 Brutes use two new vehicles, the Chopper and the Prowler.

With the advent of the Covenant Civil War, Brute weaponry is more commonplace. The Type-2 Antipersonnel Fragmentation Grenade, more commonly known as the Spike Grenade, is a creation of the Brutes themselves. It is suspected that with their newly found dominance amongst the Covenant Loyalists, the Brute Plasma Rifle has been replaced with the Type-25 Carbine or Spiker. The blades that adorn this weapon are testament to their barbaric nature and affinity for close quarters combat.

Brutes are also fond of explosives and will often use all types of Grenades in combat (particularly Spike and Incendiary grenades). They have also been known to use Fuel Rod Cannons, Rocket Launchers, and even Frag Grenades. For some reason, Brutes seem particularly fascinated with human Shotguns, perhaps attributable to the advent of the Mauler into the Covenant ranks. Their skill with the Covenant Carbine, makes them dangerous at mid to long ranges. On higher difficulties in High Charity, Brutes will use Battle Rifles, but this is quite rare.

The last surviving Brute of a pack will go berserk, charging at its enemies in a blind rage. This may be due to the strong bonds with the members of their pack. A Brute, after calming down from its rage, will sulk and mourn the loss of its comrades, even caress the bodies of the fallen. However, upon seeing its enemy, the Brute will abandon its sulking mood and once again become enraged. This mourning is a rare occurrence, almost never seen in combat, and only when there is a brief lull in the fighting.

Brutes are extremely resilient, and can take enormous amounts of damage. Before Halo 3, they lacked any form of equivalent to the Elite Personal Energy Shield but worryingly they don't seem to need to. As of Halo 3, regular adoption of Power Armor has been cycled into Brute ranks. However, the Power Armor can fall apart, and if you manage to do so, the Brute will charge and try to head-butt you.

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Chronologically, the first appearance in canon that the Brutes make is in Halo: Contact Harvest, where the Prophets send a Brute-operated vessel, rather than an Elite ship, to capture the "relics" on Harvest: actually the human occupants. The resulting hostilities led to the Human-Covenant War.

Brute Heroes:

Brute Chieftain - Armor : These Brute Chieftains relies upon powerful weapons like Portable Plasma Cannons and Fuel Rod Cannons and even Brute Shots to crush their foes. Their armor cannot be stuck by Plasma or Spike grenades and Needler needles.

Brute Chieftain - Weapon: These Brute Chieftains are clad in crimson/black armor and wield close-ranged Melee weapons such as Gravity Hammers and Energy Swords. They use Invincibility and their Power Armor cannot be stuck by Plasma or Spike grenades and Needler needles.

Brute Leaders:

Brute Captain Ultra : The Brute Captain Ultras are the highest captain rank and use heavier weapons, such as Brute Shots.

Brute Captain Major: The Brute Captain Majors are even more experienced than their younger comrades and lead larger packs into battle.

Brute Captain: The Brute Captains are experienced Brutes who now lead their comrades and the lesser races into battle.

Brute Specialists:

Brute Bodyguard: Brute Bodyguards are some of the Chieftain's most reliable warriors and not only protect their chieftain but enforce his tribal law. They seem to be the Brute counterparts of the Honor Guard Elite Unit.

Brute Jumppack : These veteran Brutes utilize jumppacks to launch aerial attacks from afar, and use their enhanced mobility for guerrilla battle tactics. They seem to be the Brute counterparts of the Ranger Elite Unit.

Brute Stalker : Brute Stalkers are the secret police of the Brutes, and specialize in stealth techniques with their Active Camouflage generators. They seem to be the Brute counterparts of the Stealth Elite unit.

Brute Infantry :

Brute Ultra: Brute Ultras are now armed with violet armor, they are comprised of the best of the regular infantrymen, showing tact, cunning skill, and strength.
Brute Major Brute Majors are clad in dark blue armor and are promoted in a similar fashion to the Elites. They are promoted on the casualties they inflict.

Brute Minor : Brute Minors are the lowest rank of the Brute race, clad in turquoise armor and typically armed with the Type-25 Carbine. Not only do they compete for their posting but also for their equipment.

Posted: Jan 1 2008, 11:46 PM

High commander of the Elite Forces.

Group: The Prophets
Posts: 60
Member No.: 7
Joined: 31-May 07


The Mgalekgolo are assemblages of colonies of Lekgolo, a species of small colonial worm like creatures, into a larger, more powerful organism. They are commonly referred to by Humans as Hunters.

The most common type of Mgalekgolo is known as a "Hunter", in which the individual Lekgolo form into a vaguely human-shaped creature approximately twelve feet tall, which can then be armed with a Fuel Rod Cannon, armored, and turned into an extremely powerful ground unit. This Mgalekgolo form is commonly employed by the Covenant. When a single colony of Mgalekgolo becomes too big, the colony will divide in half to create two independant Mgalekgolo colonies. These colonies will share an extremely close and mysterious bond, referred to only as being "bond brothers". Mgalekgolo that have split into "bond brothers" are recognized by spiked appendages that rise from their shoulders, which signify the fact that they are bonded to another Mgalekgolo.

It is unclear what other types of Mgalekgolo exist, as Lekgolo colonies have yet to be directly observed outside of combat. However, a strange, orange structure which closely resembles a group of Lekgolo worms has been observed in the core of Scarab walkers in Halo 3, making it a possibility that a Mgalekgolo colony is at the heart of every Scarab walker, though this type of colony has yet to recieve a name.

Hunters take a hulking bipedal form in the Covenant military which is, in truth, the least common assemblage of the creatures. In this form, they are the strongest species in the Covenant . These forms stand anywhere from nine and a half to twelve feet tall, but when in their combat state they crouch to approximately eight feet, making their weak spots smaller. Hunters fight with Fuel Rod Guns (Halo: Combat Evolved) or modified Fuel Rod Cannons (Halo 2 and Halo 3) integrated directly into their armor, and they carry an enormous and nearly-impervious metal shield made of an unknown alloy, which they sometimes use as a melee weapon. The modified Fuel Rod Cannon used in Halo 2 is more beam-like, similar to that of the Gravity Cannon. The fire is more sustained, and more devastating. With these weapons and charactaristics it seems that the Hunters are more like equipment then soldiers.

The Hunters' religious, political and philosophical affiliation with the Covenant was based on their need for viable space travel and see little need for religion. When their homeworld of Te was visited by an advanced alien culture who were intent on mining the world, they faced heavy resistance from the Hunters whose physiology gave them a tremendous advantage in combat. Hunters were later forced into the Covenant by the superior starship technology of the Elites - on the ground they were mostly, if not always, victorious. Faced with extinction by orbital bombardment, they joined the Covenant.

It is assumed that this is when an Arbiter was killed, and that this was the time of the Taming of the Hunters. Terms for their induction into the Covenant were eventually met despite communication difficulties which hampered the process. As part of joining their conquerors, the Covenant would use local labor and expertise to mine resources from rare metals to minerals. In exchange for this, the Hunters were given free access to the Covenant's spaceways.

Hunters almost never associate, or even communicate, with other Covenant client races, save for the Elites. They are dismissive, scornful, and arrogant to the "lesser" Covenant races, and are utterly contemptuous of their foes.

Hunters have three names: personal name, bond name, and line name. The personal name is given at birth. The line name represents the genetic heritage, being the name of the most successful Hunter of his ancestors. If one reaches a certain level of status, his offspring will have his personal name as their line name. The bond name is taken between bonded pairs, a relationship about which little is known, but it appears to be something like a lifelong brother. Examples of names include Igido Nosa Hurru, and Ogada Nosa Fasu.

In Halo: Contact Harvest, it is stated that Mgalekgolo "Brothers" are two pieces of the same colony of Lekgolo that have formed two Mgalekgolo. One that has lost its partner can and will become extremely aggressive. Bonded Mgalekgolo consider themselves brothers and are fiercely protective of each other.

During the Covenant Civil War, most Hunter pairs sided with the Sangheili and the Covenant Separatists. No reason for this is known yet, but it is likely due to their deep respect for the Elites, or possibly because the Jiralhanae struck them first, betraying them. Sadly, the Mgalekgolo are not seen following the Sangheili into battle against the Brutes during their support of the UNSC on Earth and at Installation 00. It has been noted that the Hunters' political motivation is unknown, although it is thought that if the Lekgolo seceded from the Covenant, their homeworld would be glassed.

During the Battle of Onyx, some Hunters had command of lower ranking Sangheili, possibly signifying some sort of leadership or rank level.

They are called mysteries by an Elite Fleet Commander. It is stated that the Hunters were mysteries, and that the commander had known them to tear opponents apart with their "hands" whilst in a blood frenzy, and then pause to recite war poetry.

Hunters are not singular organisms, but rather hive creatures composed of multiple small, orange, eel-like beings that form a singular collective consciousness and act as one. The extremely strong armor that covers them serves the dual purpose of protecting the eels and keeping them together. Hunters also have very sharp, long spines made of the same eels that compose their body. Hunters have been known to impale careless Marines upon these spines. However, in-game the spines serve no purpose besides decoration. The white streak on the Hunter's "head" is actually a visor or sensor screen.

The collection of eels that make up a Hunter's body are unintelligent at the most basic level, but can form complex thoughts and emerge as a conscious individual when they combine into larger masses that communicate through chemical and electrical means. Their society is predominated by this combination of being to create exponentially more intelligent creatures, and the actual "Hunter" organism is one of the rarer and smaller forms to be found, used primarily in interaction with the Covenant hierarchy. The eels that make up a "Hunter" only have one eye per worm. The worms that make up the arms and legs have the eyes located within the central thorax armor. The neural net that Hunters develop enables them to be incredibly strong and sensitive to all things within a 1000 foot line pointing out from non-combat form, and a half sphere that extends 500 feet in combat form.

Hunters generally growl during battle but will sometimes talk and make remarks like the other Covenant species. Instead of using vocal chords, they vibrate their bodies to make a low rumble that is described as "more felt than heard" to produce speech.

It is theorized that Hunters reproduce asexually; however, there is, as yet, no way to be certain. New information suggests that the Hunters can generate an eel, and then an eel from a large number of other Hunters is needed to make a Hunter.

The Hunters' gauntlets have three fingers, each bearing a sharp claw. It appears that they wear their distinctive arm shield by inserting their hand into a built-in gauntlet. Similarly, their Fuel Rod Cannon has a large hand slot, enabling the weapon to be attached securely to the arm.

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A Hunter's armor is extremely resilient, and is immune to most small arms fire. However, they do have an exploitable weak spot: the exposed orange flesh located in their midsections and necks. While they keep the exposed areas on the fronts of their bodies well-covered with their shields, rarely giving the player an opening unless the Hunter tries to melee them, the creature's backs have a large exposed area that is extremely vulnerable. However, though firearms are incapable of penetrating a Hunter's armor, it cannot stand up to heavy weapons such as rockets and artillery.

In Halo: Combat Evolved, Hunters were rarely difficult to defeat; their AI was simplistic, their shots and melees were slow and awkward, and they could barely move fast enough to run down a back-pedaling Spartan. Interestingly in Halo PC if you don't move from your position while the Hunter is firing at you, it will never hit you with its Fuel Rod Gun. Furthermore, they could be killed by a single shot from the M6D Pistol, as long as it hit the exposed orange area in the middle of the body or the similarly unarmored "neck." Other weapons, especially the shotgun and sniper rifle for very short and very long distances, respectively, were equally deadly. The rocket launcher was always effective, but never particularly necessary. Grenades were only moderately effective, as the Hunter could withstand a half-dozen grenade blasts. Plasma weapons were often ineffective, as was the Needler, and the MA5B Assault Rifle took so long to make a kill that other weapons were far more useful. Still, no player with even a modicum of skill feared confronting a Hunter on open ground. On Legendary, some players regarded Hunters as the least challenging enemies in the game. However, inexperienced or careless players can fall victim to the Hunters' attacks, which, while easy to anticipate, are rather powerful.

However, Hunters really gained the upper hand in the cramped hallways of the Truth and Reconciliation and the Pillar of Autumn, where there was little space to dodge the fuel rods or crushing melee blows, and no room to utilize either a sniper or rocket launcher to defeat them. Still, these levels were full of shotgun or pistol ammo, and these weapons are reasonably useful against Hunters at close range.

If one were to stand far away from the Hunter, it would use its fuel rod cannon. However, the shot was slow, and very easy to dodge if you could see it coming. It was also easy to anticipate, as the barrel of the weapon glowed bright green before firing. If you were in melee range of the Hunter, it would also use its arm shield in an attempt to crush you, resulting in serious injury, if not death. However, these attacks were simple to anticipate and dodge. On certain levels, it is possible to defeat Hunters by standing in front of a hole and then sidestepping them as they attempt a melee attack; if timed right, the Hunter will fall down the hole and die.

Hunters were first seen by humans in 2537 in Operation: PROMETHEUS.

Hunters are responsible for security aboard a Covenant Warship. One of their duties is to protect the vessel's Ship Master, and, failing that, enact revenge on his assassin.

Spartan William-043 killed a Hunter by ripping out the worms in its body, hinting that Hunters can be killed if too many worms are displaced.

Posted: Jan 2 2008, 12:15 AM

High commander of the Elite Forces.

Group: The Prophets
Posts: 60
Member No.: 7
Joined: 31-May 07

The Sangheili (Latin Macto cognatus) are a species of fierce warriors and skilled tacticians in the unified conglomerate races known as the Covenant. Colloquially known by humans as Elites, presumably due to their adeptness in combat, the Sangheili formed the military backbone of the Covenant for nearly the whole of its existence. The rank of an Elite is indicated by the color of his armor: which is then in turn determined by how many kills the Sangheli has made in battle.

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Most Elites are approximately 8'6" tall and are incredibly powerful and muscular. In Halo 2, Major Elites can melee and kill you in one hit. Elite warriors augment this natural resilience further through use of personal energy shields integrated into their armor. The Elite combat armor might also posses strength and damage control systems much like its human counterpart, (MJOLNIR), which echoes that of the shields found in the employ of Jackals.

Elites employ coffin-like Orbital Insertion Pods as well as Phantom and Spirit dropships for military transit purposes and rapid-response. Historically Elites have maintained an intense hatred of humanity, believing them an affront to their religion and a challenge to their Great Journey; there are signs that this stance is being slowly abandoned, however, as a tentative alliance between the two enemies forms the core allied faction in Halo 3. Yet the grudging respect Elites now seem to harbor for their allies is not without precedent: Elites long acknowledged humanity's resolve. Impressed by humanity's ingenious tactics and will to survive, some had even wondered why the Prophets never offered humanity a place in the Covenant.

There are several distinct Elite ranks, all equivalent to a UNSC commissioned officer. These ranks are denoted by varying coloration and armor design for identification and honorific purposes. Promotions are based on the amount and type of casualties inflicted by an Elite. Higher ranked Elites retain unique rights to stronger energy shields and thicker, more ornate armor as well as special weapons such as the Energy Sword. The lowest Elite rank, "Minor Domo" primarily functions as a leader to a Grunt squad while the the highest rank, "Councilor," directly serves the Prophets. Councilors also retain at least a limited participatory role in political decision making.

The Arbiter is considered a sacred position to the Elite culture and the "blade" of the Prophets; as such it transcends the traditional Elite hierarchical structure.Ceremonial positions that have neither political power nor battlefield relevance also exist (such as Elite Honor Guards).

Since the founding of the Covenant, Elites have enjoyed a mutually beneficial arrangement with the Prophets, serving as their military counterpart in exchange for political and religious leadership. Thanks to their intelligence and strength, Elites were granted not only the favor of the Prophets, but the admiration - or at least respect - of the "lesser" Covenant races as well. However, as a result of the Battle of Installation 04 their place in the Covenant was usurped by the Brutes. The end-result of this has been the ongoing Covenant Civil War (referred to colloquially as "The Great Schism").

Elites consider all of the other species of the Covenant, with the exception of the Prophets, to be below them in all ways, and this is not without good reason. They are the most refined warriors the Covenant has, and, although they are not as abundant as the other species, they are the most intelligent, the most dependable, and have the highest sense of honor. Because of this, the Prophets have chosen the Elites, and no others, to be on the High Council with them; to help them rule the Covenant.

During the events of Halo 2, a political shift caused by both the Prophet of Truth and the Brute Chieftan, Tartarus, started a slippery slope that ended in the dissolution of the Covenant between the Elites and the Prophet. Originally, Brutes were viewed as savage and extremely goal-oriented, which the Elites viewed as a severe threat should the Brutes ever begin to desire political power. This fear became reality when the Honor Guard of the Prophets, formally an all-Elite class, was transformed into a duty of the Brutes. This was in part caused by the death of the Prophet of Regret, despite his protection from his Elite Guards. Soon Brutes found themselves in new positions of power only dreamed of before, as Ship captains, ship masters, and veritable replacements for the Elites. This caused the Great Schism, the start of the Covenant Civil War.

In the Elite culture, names are considered a privilege and an honor for only those deemed worthy. The Elites generally consider humans to be nameless, and resent that the humans have assigned the label "Elite" to them. The word "Elite" is often transposed as an English translation of their own name in game footage and other media. Elite names are constructed from a series of parts, each with a specific meaning. The first name is a given name that is attained at birth, which persists until adulthood. As they come of age, they earned the right to carry a badge name. This name is made up of three parts: an adjectival descriptor, such as "fast" or "deadly," a crèche or family name, and ee, an honorific indicating that the Elite is a military participant. Since the Great Schism all Elites in the rebellious faction have stripped their name of this honorific. Most Elites will have names with this kind of construction. It appears that additional titles may be given to those of very high rank, such as Xytan 'Jar Wattinree. Since "Jar" is not a part of the standard Elite name, it may be assumed that it denotes Xytan's status as Imperial Admiral, although this has yet to be confirmed. There is no other reference, however, of other names with this sort of addition, as no other Elites above the rank of Zealot have been named.

Promotion in the Covenant military is by merit; a Covenant soldier must succeed to advance among the ranks. Success is often measured in scalps. An Ultra, for example, may have personally slaughtered thousands of individuals to reach that status.[10] It is likely that a Sangheili government, if one exists, would be a Meritocracy like its military, based on individual ability.

Family Life
Elites apparently value their family history, with each family having their own unique "Battle Poem," detailing the deeds of its members during wartime. It is known that males and females pair for life. It is theorised that only Sangheili males are sent into service as warriors, with no females known to have been seen in Covenant military service, though whether there is a significant physical or cultural difference is not known. Aristocrats, those who are allowed to wield swords, are forbidden from "marrying" by Sangheili traditions, though they are allowed to mate with any other female, whether paired or not, to pass his "swordsman genes" to the next generation.

The Elites once dwelt on a planet, possibly Sanghelios, that had at one point been visited by the Forerunners, or had been in contact with the Forerunners. They revered the objects these "Gods" had left, and considered tampering with them a Heresy beyond any other. It was not long until they encountered the Prophets, a race who also felt the Forerunner had found salvation, but had utilized their technology for their own needs. The Prophets had already suffered terrible losses from a Civil War based on the same argument they had with the Elites, and if it were not for the awesome power of the Forerunner Dreadnought, they would have perished. The Elites suffered extreme casualties from the Prophet's hit and run techniques that utilized their "Keyship" and it was not long before even the most devout had to admit their survival depended on the reconstitution of their Forerunner technology. This, of course, led both sides to an agreement that ended with the decommissioning of the Forerunner Dreadnought and a shaky alliance that eventually expanded in the Covenant.

''On and on shall old war go,

Without respite my blood will flow
O’er your eyes‘til they cannot see
The impossibility of victory.

The Prophets helped assuage the Elites by telling them more of the Great Journey: That by seeking out the Holy Rings scattered throughout the galaxy and utilizing them, a "Great Journey" would begin. This Great Journey would transform believers into godlike beings, while providing salvation for their doomed existence of fighting with the Flood. The Elites then became the bodyguards of the Prophets, who would search the galaxy for the Halos. The Writ of Union was drawn up in order to codify the Covenant. Its first canto clearly outlines the nature of the Covenant from the perspective of the Prophets:

''So full of hate were our eyes that none of us could see

Our war would yield countless dead but never victory.
So let us cast our arms aside and like discard our wrath
Thou, in faith, will keep us safe, whilst we find the path.

In many ways the Elites are much like humans. They communicate, become protective of their troops and become angry and vengeful if other Elites are killed. They fear very little, taking great pride in an ancient, honor-laden code. Even when mortally wounded, such being stuck with a Plasma Grenade, they may roar with pain and fury, but they still may charge in a doomed attack.

Despite the Prophet's insistence that the humans were perversions that must be expunged, the Elites have begun to question the refusal of the Prophets to accept humans into the Covenant. They claim variously that humans are "tenacious", that their technology is "limited, but... useful", that their battle techniques are "impressive", and that they are "excellent strategists. They seem to believe that humans, although weak, are honorable and brave. Certainly, some Elites believe that humans should be admitted to the Covenant. Some even believe that the humans are equal to them - a considerable step for an Elite, or any member of the Covenant, to make.

It is not unusual for the Elites to have an admiration for their adversaries. Their history is rife with victorious combatants welcoming the felled enemies' remaining forces into their own arm. During the Grunt Rebellion the most tenacious of the Unggoy who survived the conflict were admitted for the first time into previously all-Sangheili forces, much to the Prophet's discontent.

During the Battle of Installation 05 the Arbiter, and Rtas 'Vadum discovered the truth of the Halo rings from the Monitor 343 Guilty Spark and persuaded most, if not all of their race to cede from the Covenant and fight once again for the Elites. This included a movement to destroy the treacherous Brutes, the eradication of the Flood at all costs, and eventually the alliance with the Humans, persuaded by the Arbiter's counsel.

Elites have an interesting physical appearance and anatomy. Their jaw is quadruple-hinged, with an upper jaw and four Mandible-like lips which are lined with sharp teeth. It is because of this unique mouth that humans have given them the nicknames "split-chin" or "squidhead". It is suggested that the Sangheili are a possibly carnivorous or simply more carnivorous than omnivorous, race. It is unknown, given this structure, how Elites chew and swallow food, or even speak, though it may be possible that they possess shaping vols or a tongue. This may only apply to speaking English, since in Halo 2 most of their language is translated from UNSC translation software. Their hands only have four fingers; two middle fingers and two opposing thumbs on the outside for grasping. Their legs are digitigrade, possibly allowing them to run very quickly and jump large distances, at least when compared to ordinary humans and other species of the Covenant, though they do find it difficult to climb. Their hooves and leg structure give them excellent balance.

Elites have more than one heart. They have purple blood, most likely a Cobalt based hemoglobin then our Iron based, although it is still unknown what chemical makes their blood this color. It is assumed that they breathe oxygen, as they can breathe the same atmosphere as humans. They also appear to have a double set of pectoral muscles, which would add to or possibly cause their incredible strength. They have grayish-brown skin, and the majority of Elites have dark blue or black eyes, although there are a few exceptions. It has been theorized that the reason Elites seem to have dark blue eyes is because they wear eye coverings (which gives them their in-game HUD). This hypothesis comes largely from the Arbiter's appearance- when standing before the council in his armor, his eyes were dark, but after his armor was removed, his eyes became a much lighter orange. Elites have snake-like eyes, with horizontal split eyelids and placement on the sides of the head (this can only be seen in Halo 3, Elites in Halo 1 and 2 have all black eyes with no pupils). Some other changes to Elites in Halo 3 include: bigger helmet, new rear protection, no secondary colors, they slouch more, and seem more muscular.

Elites are extremely intelligent and demonstrate this in combat. Elites are normally on the move when fighting, constantly running and ducking, strafing and dodging when firing at the enemy. When presented with an obstacle, such as say, a Warthog driving at them, they will leap out of the way, and if a vehicle stops, they will attempt to board it or disable it. They are also smart enough to utilize cover, ducking behind crates or other obstacles when their shields are drained until they recharge. It should be noted that not all Elites make use of cover: Zealots and Councilors charge their enemies with reckless aggression, regardless of any damage they sustain; only very seldom do they admit temporary defeat. They are quite capable of luring their enemies into traps by falling back into cover; as the enemy approaches, the Elite will spring from its position and land a massive melee hit on the unsuspecting opponent. Elites are incredible tacticians, renowned for their ferocity and decisive thinking. This is shown to be very true for ship to ship combat, even when being horribly out numbered, they can win the fight with few losses. Perhaps the most conclusive statement that can be made, then, is that Elites are never to be underestimated, no matter what rank. Overall, Elites have intelligence matching that of humans.

"Although Elites are naturally very intelligent, their culture's long dependence on a military-industrial schema has led to an emphasis on might over science. In some regards, the advent of the Covenant made this position easier--allowing the Elites to concentrate even more monomaniacally on military endeavors, while Prophets took care of science and technology"
—343 Guilty Spark in the Bestiarum

High Council:

Counciller:These Elites share power with the minor Prophets on the High Council. They are one of the highest ranks an Elite can get. They have extra strong energy shields, a large headdress, and bear a single Energy Sword. They were taken to Delta Halo where most were killed by the Brutes during the Covenant Civil War in Halo 2.

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Arbiter:The unique rank of Arbiter is bestowed upon an Elite warrior only in a time of need, sometimes as a way to let them die without shame. The current Arbiter was branded with the mark of shame, and the only way he could escape execution was to become the Arbiter. Arbiters were "made and consumed" in desperate times such as the Grunt Rebellion, or the Taming of the Hunters, and most recently, in the events of Halo 2, the threat of heresy. Every Arbiter, however, inevitably dies in their duty, for, as the Prophet of Mercy put it, "The tasks one must undertake as Arbiter are perilous. Suicidal." The Arbiter rank is only temporary, that is, until the Arbiter has fallen as a martyr.

High Commanders

Imperial Admiral: Revealed in Halo: Ghosts of Onyx, the Imperial Admiral's role is to command the whole fleet of the Covenant. Only one such Elite, Xytan 'Jar Wattinree, is known, and it is likely that there is only ever one at a time.

Supreme Commander: The Supreme Commander is the commander of a particular fleet; in the Halo Graphic Novel, he is depicted as clad in bright violet armor, with a long cloak that wraps around his shoulders. This particular Supreme Commander was a friend and superior to SpecOps Leader Rtas 'Vadumee, and would later become the Arbiter.

Zealot/Field Master/Ship Master/Fleet Master:The Generals and Admirals of the Covenant military; commanders of battalions, ships, and fleets. Field Masters lead armies; Ship Masters command ships; Fleet Masters command armadas. 'Zealot' seems to be a general term, applying to all gold-armored Elites. Zealots appear to have been physically augmented somehow, as they are able to survive a whole magazine from an M6C Magnum, or 2 Sniper Rifle head shots (However a magazine of dual Magnums will kill them) although this may be due to higher-quality armor.

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Honour Guard:

Honour Guard Ultra:These Honor Guards are above the normal Honor Guards, commanding them and leading them in combat. It is assumed that they have stronger armor and better shielding. They are seen clad in white armor with glowing Honor Guard plates.

Elite Honour Guard:The Honor Guards are the personal guard of the Council, in particular the Prophet Hierarchs. They wear ornate, ceremonial red armor. Although they wield a large pike for ceremonial purposes, they generally utilize Energy Swords or Plasma Rifles in actual combat. It is believed, although not confirmed, that they are slightly below Zealots in the Covenant hierarchy.

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Special Operations:

Special Operations Commander:Special Operations Commanders command a troupe of regular SpecOps troops. They are immediately above Ultras in rank, the only cosmetic difference being more white on the Commander. They are only seen in Halo 2, in Rtas 'Vadumee. It is unknown how strong their shields are or how skilled they are in combat, because 'Vadumee is invincible and an ally.

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Special Operations Elite: Special Operations Elites are extremely skilled fighters, sent in by the Covenant to accomplish the most dangerous and difficult of missions. They have superior accuracy, fire in longer bursts, and have slightly stronger shielding than regular Elites. Most notably, SpecOps Elites operate in squads and are extremely skilled and accurate grenade throwers. They are equipped with an active camouflage system, but rarely use it except to get into position without notice.


Stealth Elite: The Stealth Elites are the Covenant's assassins and spies, and they use Active Camo technology, as the Special Operations Elites do. In Halo: Combat Evolved, they do not have energy shields, but are nearly invisible to the naked eye. In Halo 2, they have energy shields, but are still not as strong as normal. They're often used on ambushes, which, with the help of their active camouflage technology, allows them to take down many enemies, if they're unseen. They usually fight in pairs and wield two plasma rifles each and, sometimes on harder difficulties, Energy Swords. You can only see their armor color when they have died. In Halo: Combat Evolved, they had a light blue color, lighter than minor Elite armor. In Halo 2, it is a mix of light brown, tan and silver.

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Elite Ranger: Rangers are a voluntary group of Elites that work in the least forgiving environment of all: vacuum. Their helmets completely encase their heads, protecting them from the vacuum of space. They wear a variant of Elite armor optimized for zero-gee, no-atmosphere combat. Their armor is cobalt in color, brighter than that of the Elite Minor. They can pose a substantial threat, due to their unique movement options. There are also variants that use their equipment to give them a tactical advantage planetside, flying above and shooting from the air, confusing and demoralizing the enemy, similar to a Drone but with more power and fewer numbers.


Elite Ultra: These are the Covenant's Colonels and Captains, just below the golden-armored Zealots in rank. Several white Elite corpses were seen in Halo, presumably killed in combat with the Flood, but they do not appear in battle until Halo 2. They command operations, unlike the Zealots who command fleets or armies. Although they do not possess the same level of natural resilience as the Zealots, they use Overshields in combat to continue fighting long after their enemies are forced to retreat. They carry Energy Swords as backup weapons.

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Elite Major: This veteran Elite warrior is the physical equal of the UNSC's SPARTAN-II. Overall they are more agile, more accurate, and more aggressive than Minors, and seldom make tactical errors in combat. A single Red Elite can hold its own against an entire squad of UNSC Marines. In Halo 2, they can often be seen dual-wielding, piloting Covenant vehicles, or carrying heavy weapons. They are roughly equal in gameplay to the Master Chief, but with inferior aim and tactics.

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Elite Minor: The most common and least experienced Elite, Minor Elites are still skilled warriors superior to any human soldier, but they are somewhat weaker than Major Domo Elites or SPARTAN-IIs. Their energy shields are not quite as powerful, and they often make tactical errors such as standing in one place while firing, or rushing forward into enemy fire. They also fire in shorter bursts, and have somewhat less accuracy. Along with Major Domo Elites, they often lead squads of Grunts into battle.

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