If you need the Halo Infinite ending explained you're not alone, as even long-time fans of the series have been left wondering what is going on as the campaign draws to a close. Master Chief's adventure really ramps up towards the end, with barely an hour going by without some new piece of information or exposition expanding the lore and Halo universe. So if you need the Halo Infinite ending explained or details on the Halo Infinite post-credits scene, you've come to the right place.
If you're curious as to who the next big bad is going to be, who The Endless are in Halo Infinite, or just want to know what actually happened to Cortana, we have you covered in this Halo Infinite ending explained guide. Obviously, massive spoilers ahead.
What did Cortana do between Halo 5: Guardians and Halo Infinite?
With Halo Infinite picking up some 18 months after the conclusion to Halo 5: Guardians, we're only given the smallest of hints as to what Cortana gets up to on her reign of terror. We learn that she swept through the galaxy destroying anybody or thing that opposed her, including Laconia Station – which held 76 Spartan IVs – and even threatened Earth directly, stationing Guardians around the planet before leading an assault on the UNSC headquarters in Sydney, wiping the entire region out.
That isn't the most egregious action undertaken by Cortana, however. It's also revealed that Cortana tried to draw Atriox, leader of the Banished, into her cause. When Atriox refused her request, Cortana ordered an army of Guardians to surround the Banished homeworld of Doisac and destroy the entire thing. Wondering why the Banished have such hatred for humanity? They blame Cortana's creators for the entire event.
Does Cortana die in Halo Infinite?
Master Chief's mission (before Halo Infinite officially begins) was to reach Zeta Halo and deploy 'The Weapon' a new Smart AI specifically designed to contain and eradicate Cortana before she can do any more harm, and then delete itself. We spend much of Halo Infinite wondering what happened to Cortana and whether Chief completed that mission, only to eventually realise that she did in fact destroy herself.
Cortana allowed herself to be deleted after reckoning with her actions. Atriox confronts Cortana on Zeta Halo, who leads her to believe that Master Chief has been killed as a consequence of her destroying Doisac. Cortana then realises the harm that the Banished pose with a super-weapon in its hands, destroys a part of the ring to delay its activation, and prevents the deletion of The Weapon, setting a plan in motion for Master Chief to return, make a new best friend, stop the Banished, and prevent the destruction of everything the pair had worked so hard to protect over the original trilogy of games.
What is the Weapon in Halo Infinite?
You spend most of Halo Infinite in the company of The Weapon, an artificial intelligence who bears a striking resemblance to Cortana. It's revealed that The Weapon is in fact an exact copy – "the only option we had left", as Chief would put it. Dr. Halsey engineered an exact replica of Cortana, albeit one that had never met Master Chief, to allow it to get behind the AI's defences and shut her down for good. While The Weapon has some reservations about this revelation, by the end of the game her and Master Chief have reconciled with their mistrust for one another and she's given the option of choosing her own name – naturally, she picks Cortana.
Who are The Endless in Halo Infinite?
All throughout Halo Infinite, it's teased that Zeta Halo is unlike the other Installations that humanity has encountered thus far and that it could be hiding something far more destructive than the Flood – the parasite that is capable of destroying all sentient life in the universe. During the final encounter with the Harbinger, it's revealed that The Silent Auditorium was treated by the Forerunners (the original architects of the Halo Array) as a courtroom, a prison, and a place of execution. And it's here where the Harbinger's species was sentenced to indefinite imprisonment in the bowels of Zeta Halo.
While Chief is able to defeat Harbinger, not before she establishes communication with a presence outside of The Silent Auditorium, noting: "You have what you need. Tell them I am sorry it took so long…My time is ended. Yours too. They will make sure. The Endless will return."
The implication here being that The Endless, the species the Forerunners once sought to imprison, and went to great lengths to ensure it remained that way, have been released from their captivity. Whether The Endless will all resemble the Harbinger and their power set, or be something else entirely, remains to be seen for now.
Halo Infinite post-credits scene explained
The Weapon explains to Master Chief that "the signal" the Harbinger was using to communicate outside of The Silent Auditorium was "Old… like, really old." It isn't made clear who the Harbinger was talking to, but the Halo Infinite post-credits scene indicates that it may have been a familiar face. We see a Brute activate what appears to be a piece of Forerunner technology that is emanating the same yellow glow as the protective shield surrounding the Harbinger in the final The Silent Auditorium encounter. Seconds later, we see the slabs containing the imprisoned Endless begin to activate, indicating that the Harbinger's plan has been set into motion.
Halo Infinite Legendary post-credits scene explained
Atriox is surprisingly absent throughout Halo Infinite. The leader of the Banished (who many of you may remember from being such a dominant force in Halo Wars 2) can be seen in Infinite's opening cinematic – he's the Brute who defeats Master Chief and subsequently launches him out into space. What's weird is that he never really appears again, with it implied that Atriox died when Cortana ruptured a piece of Installation 07, forcing a dying Escharum to lead the Banished in his stead.
The Halo Infinite post-credits scene that unlocks when you complete the campaign on Legendary mode seems to indicate that the Brute is indeed Atroix – alive and well. While the regular ending seems to indicate that Atriox unlocks the vault and gains access to The Endless for his own gain, the Halo Infinite post-credits Legendary scene paints a different picture. In it, we're able to hear a conversation between Atriox and an unknown AI, and both seem concerned by what is in front of them.
In fact, Atriox actually speaks to the need to contain The Endless and the threat they pose to life. It's hinted that Atriox and the AI are working for a group called "Criterion" – which to my knowledge is the first time this entity has been mentioned in the Halo universe – who are concerned by the "unprecedented" action Atriox is taking here by opening up the vault.
It's all incredibly mysterious and it's likely we won't have answers for a little while yet. Halo Infinite is designed to be a platform that grows over time, so expect to wait a little while before we get more info on who the Endless and Criterion are, and what Atriox is up to here.
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