This morning was a huge surprise to many Halo Fans, as we got a not so subtle hint of a long time fan favorite faction making their debut in the mainline Halo Games. The Banished may be one of the enemy factions in Halo Infinite.
"The Hour approaches. Forces occupy the ring. Within hours, it will be under our control. Humanity will burn. Their praise and defiance will be all but a memory. No more Prophets. No more lies. We stand together. Brothers till the end. We are his will. We are his legacy. We are the Banished."
The Banished are one of the many fan favorite factions in the Halo Universe, but casual fans of the series may be unaware of who exactly they are. In short, they are a splinter faction of the Covenant Empire formed mostly of Jiralhanae, or as most fans of the series would refer to them, Brutes. Prior to the end of the Human-Covenant War, they were exiled mercenaries of the Covenant who opposed their Sangheili (Elite) masters. This resulted in a minor civil war between The Banished and The Covenant. Following the events of the Great Schism in Halo 2, the Banished were able to absorb many of the former covenant forces and raise to new power in the universe.
They made their first appearance in video games in the Halo Wars 2 as the main antagonistic force of the game. This seemingly bleeds into Halo infinite, as Halo Wars 2 takes place on the Ark. The game ends with the formation of a new Halo Ring, which gets confronted by one of Cortana's Guardians before the credits. Based on the audio message from the trailer, we can infer that the Halo Ring that was created during Halo Wars 2 will play a part in the story for Halo Infinite. Players will not only have to face off against Cortana's rising army, but now also have to tackle preventing The Banished from using the newly created Halo Ring.
This is not the first hint we have gotten toward The Banished's inclusion in the game, as throughout the past few months leaks have hinted toward this outcome in the form of MEGA BLOKS toys. New sets have been schedule to release to coincide with the new game this fall, and the toy manufacturer has not been able to keep all the new designs a secret. Below is leaked imaged of what appears to be a Banished Brute and Ghost.
The Banished are known for their black armor and red highlights, and many other figures and sets have leaked with this color scheme in mind, giving fans the perception of the Banished's inclusion in the game for months. Although fans have speculated The Banished would appear in the game, the teaser trailer today is the first official confirmation.
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