‘Halo 4: Forward Unto Dawn’ Part 4 Welcomes Master Chief

Oct 26, 2012 by  

We’ve put time into learning the cast of Hastati Squad in Part 1, and saw the losses and fears that motivated them in Part 2. Part 3 finally brought the Covenant up against Thomas Lasky and the students of Corbulo Academy, but left fans hanging.

Part 4 of Halo 4: Forward Unto Dawn has arrived at last, and the action is well worth the wait. Those who couldn’t make it through the week with only the promise of a live-action Master Chief had the stunning ‘Scanned’ trailer to tide them over, but there’s just no comparison. 343 Industries and the creative heads of the web series took their time setting the stage for John’s arrival into the fight, and as is expected of a Spartan-II, he doesn’t disappoint.

This episode of Forward Unto Dawn is certainly the one that fans have been waiting for, and not just because it provides the first look at a real set of Mjolnir armor. The action that Master Chief brings was what sold the entire series in the first theatrical trailer, and there’s nothing like some frenzied Covenant combat to get fans prepped for the launch of Halo 4. But we’re getting ahead of ourselves.

Halo 4 Forward Unto Dawn Elite Sword

When we last left the cast of Forward Unto Dawn, Lasky had been forced to decide whether he would lead for his own reasons or those that were expected by the UNSC. All that introspection ended with the arrival of the Covenant, and the death of at least one member of Hastati Squad. And the more we see of the Covenant, the easier to hate them they become. It takes a special kind of depravity to kill unarmed children, but as fans of the series know, the Prophets’ extermination of human beings is driven by religious zeal, not the honor embodied in the Corbulo slogan ‘Axios.’

It’s fitting then, that director Stewart Hendler (Sorority Row, H+) should rely on his slasher-flick experience in characterizing the cloaked Elite as pulled from any classic horror – not just science fiction – movie (kudos on the water effects). Players aren’t used to evading the Energy Sword-wielding Sangheili, so the result of seeing unarmed soldiers-in-training forced to see the alien as more than just a target is refreshing. It also makes the renewed strength that the Master Chief brings an even stronger case of wish fulfillment.

Halo 4 Forward Unto Dawn Master Chief

And not a moment to soon. It’s not hard to see why so much time was put into developing characters to interact with the Chief, as the armor-clad super-soldier isn’t exactly a conversationalist. Not that his actions don’t speak louder than any rousing speech, but the Master Chief isn’t going to be the character for viewers to identify with throughout this story. Even if his skills on combat and knowledge of both Human and Covenant weapons (which apparently aren’t so rare) are familiar to casual fans, his personality certainly isn’t.

What do you think of Part 4 of the web series? Did Daniel Cudmore (X-Men 3: Last Stand) bring Master Chief to life as you would expect, or did the Spartan fail to handle himself in the manner you’d hoped? The combat and special-effects-laden action is what fans have demanded from any Halo movie that ever gets made, so Forward Unto Dawn might help sell that idea all on its own.

There is still some time left in Part 5 for the Chief to shine, and for even more heartbreak.

Halo Forward Unto Dawn Chief Fighting

So far it seems the story is going to include action with a ‘quality over quantity’ mindset, and while casual observers may just demand more explosions and bigger fights, fans are most interested to see how Thomas Lasky becomes not just a cadet, but the future commander of the UNSC Infinity.

Halo 4: Forward Unto Dawn will be released via Halo Waypoint and Machinima every Friday, leading up to the launch of Halo 4 on November 6, 2012.

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Follow me on Twitter @andrew_dyce.

10 Comments

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  1. Is it safe to say this exceeds all expectations of what this show was going to be? Each friday I look forward, no pun intended, to watching the newest episode and it keeps getting better and better. Could not want to make me play Halo 4 any more, which I think is their goal.

  2. I actually didn’t recognize the Chiefs voice was Steve Downes until near the end. Sounds different from the first three games, but at least it’s still him! I thought this episode was fantastic, definitely worth the wait.

    • It’s not Steve Downes. It sounds different because Chief is like 15 in the series.

      • He’s credited as the voice on IMDB. It’d also be kind of silly not to have him voice the chief.

        • He probably voices Chief in the “Halo 4″ segments while someone else voices 15 year old Chief.

    • I heard somewhere that it isn’t him. They chose another voice actor to make him sound younger (since he is only meant to be 15 at this point). They sound pretty similar though.

  3. So excited for part 5! Pretty sure there is going to be some hunters to face, not to mention his rendevous with kelly at their pelican!

  4. finally… it gets interesting.

  5. Coolest thing Ive ever seen.

  6. I just honestly love how much darker this feels than the games. A lot of people believe that halo is just super soldier fighting aliens. I’m glad they can give the Halo universe a much more realistic feel. And for anyone confused on Master Chief’s voice, this is 20 years or so before the events of the first game. Hence the different voice. In Halo 4 his voice will be the deeper voice everyone is used to.

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