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Halo Timeline Explained (& When Infinite Takes Place)

Those who explore the Halo Infinite timeline will find that it caps off a long and complicated saga in the overall timeline of the Halo universe.

The Halo Infinite timeline is already one of interest to fans, but where does it fall on the overall timeline of the Halo universe? While Halo: Combat Evolved was the first game to release in the series, the 2010 title Halo Reach is the actual beginning of the Halo timeline, which focuses on the franchise’s most well-known character, Master Chief.

While many of Halo‘s contemporaries focused solely on the shooting and war elements, Halo stands out for its detailed world-building, which began with broad strokes in the first game but became more substantial over time. However, given that Halo games often don’t release in chronological order, it can be difficult to piece together the timeline. Thankfully for the Halo Infinite timeline placement, the question is an easy one.

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The series timeline begins with Halo Reach following Noble Team, a squad of 6 Spartans, as they try to combat the Covenant on Reach. Master Chief gets separated from Cortana as he goes to defend the UNSC Pillar of Autumn, and the game ends with the Fall of Reach as the Pillar of Autumn arrives at an unknown ring-shaped facility. The timeline continues with the first game in the franchise, Halo: Combat Evolved. Master Chief and Cortana reunite with marines on the Halo facility before Master Chief learns about the infectious race called the Flood (villains thankfully not relevant to Halo Infinite‘s timeline, as they don’t appear). To avoid having the Flood spread throughout the galaxy, Master Chief and Cortana destroy the Pillar of Autumn and Halo.

When Halo Infinite Takes Place On The Halo Timeline

Halo Infinite

The series proceeds with Halo 2 as an alien Covenant fleet arrives on Earth, and Halo 3: ODST takes place simultaneous to this, following a group of ODST as they deploy into New Mombasa to protect the city from Covenant forces. They’re successful in this, which impacts the events of the Halo 2 timeline, where betrayal leads to a civil war between the Elites and Brutes while Master Chief, accompanied by an Elite called the Arbiter, have to stop the Brutes from activating a Halo installation. The heroes are successful in preventing this disaster, but discover that the Covenant are attacking Earth in order to access a massive Forerunner artifact. In Halo 3, Master Chief and the Arbiter need to destroy another Halo ring to wipe out the Flood permanently, which requires that Master Chief rescue Cortana from a Flood infection. After activating the Halo, it begins to tear itself apart, and while the Arbiter, Master Chief, and Cortana survive the detonation, the Chief and Cortana are set adrift, their fate uncertain.

Halo 4 begins as Cortana and Master Chief enter the planet Requiem. The Chief must stop a Forerunner criminal, the Didact, who takes over Covenant forces on the planet. After failing in this mission, Master Chief follows the Didact to Gamma Halo, where he puts a stop to the Forerunner with the help of a team of Spartans. They survive a nuclear detonation, but Cortana is lost in the process, leading to the events of the divisive Halo 5: Guardians, where Blue Team and Fireteam Osiris must stop Cortana’s subsequent plot to use the huge Forerunner Guardian constructs to bring what can only be called “galactic peace” euphemistically through forced disarmament. Seeing the eventual devastation that this would ultimately bring across the universe, Master Chief tries to speak with Cortana using the diplomatic approach to convince her to stop, but is unable to find success. The game finishes with the Chief’s ship engaging slip space as he flees Cortana. The legendary ending reveals an unknown Halo installation, and while books and other media have revealed that much happens between Halo 5 and the Halo Infinite timeline, Infinite is a direct follow-up in chronological order.

When Halo Infinite takes place is only a few years after the events of Halo 5, in 2560. Halo Infinite‘s timeline unfolds on Zeta Halo, also known as Installation 07, and there currently are no games that occur any further in the Halo timeline. Despite the long history of the franchise and its many entries, Halo Infinite‘s campaign is the current end-cap of the series. Only time will tell where Halo will take Master Chief next.

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