Section 3

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m (Nov 2 Bulletin - Q)
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* Inspect the image closely. Locate the pieces of the puzzle scattered around the scene. Together:
 
* Inspect the image closely. Locate the pieces of the puzzle scattered around the scene. Together:
 
*: [[Image:Halo4-Bulletin121102-datapiece.jpg]]
 
*: [[Image:Halo4-Bulletin121102-datapiece.jpg]]
* Secondly, there is an image linked in the source call "empty.png". Open the file and adjust the brightness to reveal the text: <spoiler>..\images\mc?-???-???-???-???-???-???-???\classified.mp4</spoiler>
+
* Secondly, there is an image linked in the source call "empty.png". Open the file and adjust the brightness to reveal the text:<br/><spoiler>..\images\mc?-???-???-???-???-???-???-???\classified.mp4</spoiler>
 
* Additionally, the above web page source includes a very large collection of comments, implying it should be ignored. But in the center of this suspicious pattern is a base64 string:
 
* Additionally, the above web page source includes a very large collection of comments, implying it should be ignored. But in the center of this suspicious pattern is a base64 string:
 
*: '''TVRoZAAAAAYAAAABA8BNVHJrAAAAbQD/IAEAAP8DFS8vQ0xBU1NJRklFRC8vRT1tYzMvLwDAWwCQNECWQIA0AACQNkCHQIA2AACQN0CHQIA3AACQNkCHQIA2AACQOUCHQIA5AACQN0CHQIA3AACQNkCWQIA2AACQNECeAIA0AAD/LwA='''
 
*: '''TVRoZAAAAAYAAAABA8BNVHJrAAAAbQD/IAEAAP8DFS8vQ0xBU1NJRklFRC8vRT1tYzMvLwDAWwCQNECWQIA0AACQNkCHQIA2AACQN0CHQIA3AACQNkCHQIA2AACQOUCHQIA5AACQN0CHQIA3AACQNkCWQIA2AACQNECeAIA0AAD/LwA='''

Revision as of 03:10, 2 November 2012

Halo 4 bits

Following is a collection of tidbits found or discovered related to Halo 4 fiction, through bulletins, videos, etc.

Priority Transmissions

Oct 10 Bulletin
PLNB PRIORITY TRANSMISSION [CLASSIFIED]
ENCRYPTION CODE: [CLASSIFIED]
PUBLIC KEY: N/A

FROM: CODENAME SURGEON
TO: CODENAME COALMINE

CLASSIFICATION: ELEVENTH HOUR [1/5]
SUBJECT: AFTERMATH

/FILE EXTRACTION-RECONSTITUTION COMPLETE/
/START FILE/

Decades from now, when historians evaluate the war, what will they say about us? Will they claim that our victory was ultimately fruitless? That it failed to secure a lasting peace, or worse, that it was only a prelude to far greater horrors that now lay ahead?

My hope – OUR HOPE – is that history would instead view this war as a catalyst. That the last thirty years were a crucible, a threshing floor for our species, sifting out our fears and frailties. And that ultimately it made us stronger and more vigilant in the end, fully prepared for whatever will come next. After all, what good is struggle if there is no change? What good is a fire if the sword is not made stronger?

Attached are four reports accounting the major contingency structures our species currently faces in the wake of the war. Please evaluate them closely. Their outcomes will dictate how history views us, or if history even views us at all.

Xenomorphic element [2/5]
Martial element [3/5]
Provenancial element [4/5]
Primogeniture element [5/5]

As Machiavelli once said: “the Romans, foreseeing troubles, dealt with them at once, and, even to avoid a war, would not let them come to a head, for they knew that war is not to be avoided, but is only put off to the advantage of others.”

Likewise, we must deal with these issues head-on, without fear and without hesitation. We can afford no other stance.

/END FILE/
Oct 17 Bulletin
PLNB PRIORITY TRANSMISSION [CLASSIFIED]
ENCRYPTION CODE: [CLASSIFIED]
PUBLIC KEY: N/A

FROM: CODENAME SURGEON
TO: CODENAME COALMINER

CLASSIFICATION: ELEVENTH HOUR [2/5]
SUBJECT: OVER THE FENCE

/FILE EXTRACTION-RECONSTITUTION COMPLETE/
/START FILE/

SPECIES CANDIDATE//LINE RECORD 94:73:02:75

UNGGOY// Sensors at Balaho indicate stability, no off-planet transport recorded since Solipsis. Runners are claiming that Buwan has been abandoned as well, but we’re keeping our eyes on it anyway. Moderate Unggoy populations have been observed in Sangheilian systems at various intervals.

KIG-YAR// Eayn’s native population continues to grow and expand within reasonable governing parameters; its economic and social lines have stabilized in the wake of the war. Muloqt, Kaelarot, and Valyanop, the primary interplanetary colonial sites, all remain static, with little notable movement. There are rumors of mercenaries operating alongside a handful of more conservative Sangheili states, although that has yet to be substantiated.

SANGHEILI// Most intel here originates from ground contacts, but sensors have assisted with validation. The primary issue with the Sangheili is that of discordant cultural symmetry. It is difficult to assess military growth across several dozen active colonial vectors all with disparate political structures. Nevertheless, any and all visible military activity appears to be internecine in nature.

NOTE: A cluster of Sangheili frontier worlds saw a sudden and anomalous convergence of unregistered ships, largely cruisers of varying classes according to a handful of remote relays stationed nearby. By the time sensors were deployed, the ships were gone. The relays can’t assess numbers or strength, but the readings we have indicate that this wasn’t an expeditionary voyage or something tied to a single state. It appears to have been much larger.

/END FILE/
Oct 25 Bulletin
PLNB PRIORITY TRANSMISSION [CLASSIFIED]
ENCRYPTION CODE: [CLASSIFIED]
PUBLIC KEY: N/A

FROM: CODENAME SURGEON
TO: CODENAME COALMINER

CLASSIFICATION: ELEVENTH HOUR [3/5]
SUBJECT: THE NEW SOLDIER

/FILE EXTRACTION-RECONSTITUTION COMPLETE/
/START FILE/

Realistically, the pervasiveness of the modern soldier will never be on the decline, at least not in our time. But ubiquity and numbers don’t always guarantee operational success, something Naval Intelligence recognized long ago. Rather than drown out our enemies in an avalanche of bodies, we saw the value intrinsic in the specialization and refinement of a very select number of soldiers - a remarkably select number, actually.

This is how the Spartan branch came to be.

By reverting back to ORION protocols, the sins of the previous administrations have been averted this time around. Unlike SPARTAN-II and SPARTAN-III, which will likely face severe ethical scrutiny in the years to come, the SPARTAN-IV project was centered on properly screened recruits, both career military veterans and young soldiers who showed significant promise. After passing a rigorous series of tests, admission to the program was a matter of discretion, not compulsion.

From a psychological perspective, the coalescent solidarity of these men and women has been nothing short of astonishing, particularly over a relatively short period of time. Many have even adopted some of the colloquial pejoratives used by S-II operatives years ago [i.e. ‘alpha bravo’ (‘alien bastard’)]. Behavioral shifts like these have and will continue to differentiate S-IVs from the others who serve alongside them. It clearly suggests that the Spartan branch has rapidly and unapologetically become its own thing... almost overnight.

But what value is a warrior without a war? What good is weapon without a threat to give it purpose? You know as well as I that these are the very questions that were asked just before the beginning of the last civil conflict we faced and these are the same questions that are being asked now - asked by those who feel they have the most to lose.

/END FILE/
Nov 2 Bulletin
  • Located just under the "Halo 4 Pre-launch Q&A" header, the embedded image's tag's ALT attribute contains a url to the next transmission PDF
PLNB PRIORITY TRANSMISSION [CLASSIFIED]
ENCRYPTION CODE: [CLASSIFIED]
PUBLIC KEY: N/A

FROM: CODENAME SURGEON
TO: CODENAME COALMINER

CLASSIFICATION: ELEVENTH HOUR [4/5]
SUBJECT: PROVENANCE

/FILE EXTRACTION-RECONSTITUTION COMPLETE/
/START FILE/

We dispatched an isolation contact group [L3-08] to the site. Upon entering the debris field, the group was immediately pinged by a non-standard, heterogenic signal emanating from the structure’s surface – or, at least, what remained of it after the event.

Following protocol, the contact group released probes [839] into the debris field. Once it was deemed secure by composite scans conducted over the course of 3.7 days, UNSC RUBICON was deployed from Luna. Aboard were a number of high-risk, remote contact teams [RCT] outfitted for deployment to the construct’s surface.

Without the installation’s artificial sun operating at full capacity, navigating the debris field for insertion was difficult – navigating the installation’s surface itself was even more difficult. The damage was... traumatic. Habitability sustainment systems were still active in some locations, but were operating intermittently and in a state of disrepair – a factor that generated extremely volatile weather conditions. Some indigenous [if it can be called that] fauna may have survived the event, but RCTs were strictly advised to avoid all potentially hostile life forms.

After 8.4 days, all contact with RCTs was severed. Only one [RCT-06] returned, suffering extensive casualties. They brought back a severely damaged armature, which appeared to be the original source of the signal. Initially, there was a strong suspicion of this armature’s origin, but local science teams undertook an aggressive node cultivation process to withdraw data from the device and determine, with veracity, its actual origin.

All communications with the UNSC RUBICON halted within 48 hours of their last notice. Search and rescue teams have been deployed to the site, but have reported no findings yet.

/END FILE/

EVILAWAKENS

EvilAwakens anim.gif

A series of community-released videos are released containing the Didact symbol in natural environments, followed by a number at the very end.

Glacier: 05 Butterfly: 11 Hoover Dam: 20 Chase: 12
Building: 51° 30' 20" N Stonehenge: 0° 4' 31" W Location: Tower Bridge (London, UK)


  • In completion, this reveals a date and location for an event taking place in London, UK
    Nov 5, 2012 at the Tower Bridge
    Two news articles refer to a Halo 4 event taking place in the middle of London [1] [2]

Forerunner Symbols

HaloCEA TerminalCode.jpg

Based on the Forerunner character set used on Halo Waypoint, characters have been discovered embedded in various releases.

Oct 14 Vidoc, Making Halo 4: Infinity Multiplayer - C
Oct 16 Newsletter - 3
Oct 17 Bulletin - K
Oct 18 Facebook Image - 8
Oct 22 Newsletter - 5
  • Newsletter - Evil Awakens
  • Instructions:
    1. Save the JPG linked by the icon in the footer.
    2. Extract all binary data between "SEC3OP36516" text markers and save as a WAV file.
    3. Load the WAV in a program that display spectrograms (eg Sonic Visualiser), the result is the image below:
    Halo4-EvilAwakens121022.jpg
Oct 25 Bulletin - P
  • Bulletin
  • Instructions:
    1. View the page source to locate a link to a hidden BMP file
    2. Save the BMP but with a PNG extension (it's a PNG file)
    3. Split the image into its RGB planes
    4. Extract the greyscale 0-255 pixel values for each pixel and save as raw files. There are many ways this can be done. The resulting binary files are additional PNG images, as below
  • One exception: The blue plane PNG has extra text content embedded in its binary (making it an invalid PNG as is). With the data extracted, boost the brightness to see the hidden symbol. Extracted from the file is the following text:
/START FILE//CLASSIFIED//RAIDER/EARLY REPORTS FROM IMBRIUM MACHINE COMPLEX FACILITY ARE POSITIVE - TESTING IS STILL UNDERWAY BUT SO FAR THE TEST SUBJECTS EXHIBIT THE DESIRED EFFECTS FROM THE UPDATED FERAL DESIGN./END FILE/
Red Green
Blue (corrected)
Halo4-Bulletin1225-BMPred.png Halo4-Bulletin1225-BMPgreen.png Halo4-Bulletin1225-BMPblue-fixed.png
  • Red plane text:
/START FILE/
/DATA DECRYPTION INTEL//GLYPHS

INTELLIGENCE OPERATIVES BE ADVISED: SECTION 3 HAS REPORTED A RECENT INCREASE IN GLYPH-ENCRYPTED DATA TRAFFIC.

GLYPHS CAN BE COMBINED TO FORM CODES, WHICH CAN BE USED TO UNLOCK CLASSIFIED DATA, VIA AUTHORIZED WAYPOINT TERMINALS.

CODES ARE TIED TO SPECIFIC PREREQUISITES WHICH MUST BE MET BY THE OPERATIVE PRIOR TO UNLOCKING THE DATA. PREREQUISITES APPEAR TO BE ASSOCIATED TO THE COMPLETION OF SPECIFIC UNSC MISSION OBJECTIVES. MORE RESEARCH IS NEEDED IN THIS AREA.

SEQUENCING OF THE GLYPHS INTO CODES IS NOW DETERMINED BY INTERLOCKED CONTAINERS (IT WAS PREVIOUSLY DETERMINED VIA GLYPH SEMANTICS, FOR THE ALPHA HALO ARCHIVE CODES).

/END FILE/

October 29 Tweet - 2

I stood still, perched high above and looked backwards. I was caught between a hard place and a rock. http://tinyurl.com/8q5ftk6
  • The tweet links to an MP4 file. The file contains meta data that reads:
    Movie Name: RECOVERED FRAGMENT
    Album: CLASSIFIED
    Recorded date: 2557
    Comment: /START FILE//CLASSIFIED//ONI HAS RECEIVED-REDACTED-/END FILE/
  • Solution[1]:
    1. The tweet hints at between "hard place" and "rock". This says two things: Look for the HARD PLACE and ROCK plain text markers in the MP4, and then reverse the data found between
    2. The resulting binary file in another PNG image
    3. The PNG is encoded with an alpha channel, and the lower 269 scanlines contain an additional stream of bytes.
    4. Extract the data, making sure your method begins at the last pixel, traveling left and up, then re-save the data (344320 bytes) as an MP4 file.
  • Inside this file is more meta data that reads:
    Movie Name: RECOVERED FRAGMENT
    Album: REQUIEM ARCHIVE I
    Recorded date: 2557
    Comment: /START FILE//CLASSIFIED//ONI HAS RECEIVED UNCONFIRMED REPORTS FROM FIELD OPERATIVES, REGARDING PREVIOUSLY UNKNOWN EMBLEM PATTERNS WHICH MAY BE APPLIED TO SPARTAN-IV ARMOR. THE EXACT MECHANISM IS UNCLEAR, HOWEVER IT MAY BE RELATED TO THE...
  • One frame of this file contains the next glyph:
    Halo4-HardPlaceRock-glyph.jpg
October 29 Trailer - 6
  • Spartan Ops Trailer 1
    p1) At the end of the trailer is a single frame with the ONI symbol, and when viewed and enhanced contains a faint outline of a puzzle piece.
    p2) Near the end of the trailer at the title sequence, there's a quiet audio squeal[2]. This is another spectrogram, which when analyzed produces the following symbol, combined below with the puzzle frame:
    Halo4-SpOpsTrailer-glyph.jpg
Nov 2 Bulletin - Q
  • Bulletin
    Location the "Section 3" portion of the bulletin. At the end of the 2nd CLASSIFIED line, there is a clickable link, a dot.
Last night I dreamt about physics, waldo and ancient melodies.

/START FILE/
//CLASSIFIED/
//ATTENTION ALL OPERATIVES: HIGH PRIORITY INTEL RECEIVED, REVIEW IS MANDATORY/
//CLASSIFIED/ .

/END FILE/
  • The link forwards to this page with the text:
/START FILE/
//CLASSIFIED/
//ALERT: RETURN FROM BASE-LXIV IMMEDIATELY!/
//
//
//ADDITIONAL DATA RECOVERED:
Halo4-Bulletin121102-data.png
/END FILE/
  • Inspect the image closely. Locate the pieces of the puzzle scattered around the scene. Together:
    Halo4-Bulletin121102-datapiece.jpg
  • Secondly, there is an image linked in the source call "empty.png". Open the file and adjust the brightness to reveal the text:
    ..\images\mc?-???-???-???-???-???-???-???\classified.mp4
  • Additionally, the above web page source includes a very large collection of comments, implying it should be ignored. But in the center of this suspicious pattern is a base64 string:
    TVRoZAAAAAYAAAABA8BNVHJrAAAAbQD/IAEAAP8DFS8vQ0xBU1NJRklFRC8vRT1tYzMvLwDAWwCQNECWQIA0AACQNkCHQIA2AACQN0CHQIA3AACQNkCHQIA2AACQOUCHQIA5AACQN0CHQIA3AACQNkCWQIA2AACQNECeAIA0AAD/LwA=
  • This base64 decodes to a mostly unreadable binary string:
    MThd���ÀMTrkmÿ �ÿ��//CLASSIFIED//E=mc3//À[4@–@€46@‡@€67@‡@€76@‡@€69@‡@€97@‡@€76@–@€64@ž€4ÿ/

Pieced together

Halo4-FRSymbols 5pc.jpg

References

  1. Thanks to Beorn and General Vagueness at HBO
  2. Thanks to Seraph XXVII at HBO)
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