It has been almost two months since the "Discover Hope" trailer for Halo Infinite debuted at E3 2019, and 343 Industries has been suggesting that there is something else to find in this trailer for the highly anticipated launch title for the next Xbox ever since. Now, the secret has finally been uncovered, and it has lead fans to a hidden link and an audio message that sounds like it comes from Cortana, the AI character from the franchise.
The secret message was hidden in the Master Chief's startup UI, which appears on screen in the Halo Infinite trailer. What may have seemed to be gibberish and sci-fi special effects within the cinematic's UI screens can actually be rearranged to form a QR code, a discovery made by a fan known as Xepyal.
When scanned, the QR code leads to a URL containing a 40-second audio file. The audio begins with sci-fi music followed by footsteps, and then some sort of glitching or activation sounds occur. After that, a voice that sounds very much like Cortana says, "This...this is part of me. I don't know why. I don't know how...but it is me."
This is how I got it, took multiple screenshots of the red bars and put them all together, then I had to make the QR code pic.twitter.com/Rjitz6W2Sw— Xepyal (@xepyal) July 29, 2019
It's unclear what exactly all this means, but another fan, named Greenskull, put the audio atop the last segment of the "Discover Hope" E3 trailer, which shows Master Chief walking towards some sort of hologram and pulling the chip out from the back of his helmet, where Cortana traditionally resides. If lined up correctly, it appears that the audio matches up almost perfectly as a secondary version of the post-title stinger from the trailer.
The original audio in this section of the trailer is also voiced by Cortana, and she says, "I knew we would be perfect together. And I was right." Is this hidden audio message just a fun Easter egg, or an alternate version of the ending of this trailer? Knowing the history of the Halo franchise, it likely speaks to a deeper mystery or tease for the game.
Developer 343 Industries did confirm that this was the secret it had been hinting at, sending a GIF of series character Catherine Halsey saying "took you long enough" to the fan that made the discovery. However, fans will have to wait some time before learning more about this message, as 343 Industries said after this year's E3 that the studio is going dark and will not share more about Halo Infinite until E3 2020.
Halo Infinite launches holiday 2020 on Xbox One, PC, and Project Scarlett.