- The gates of hell are open night & day; smooth the descent, & easy is the way. Note 1
- Listen! Do you hear them respond to your presence? Commands echoing through the dark, fetid caverns…
- Knowledge is its own end.
- We fear the Darkness because we believe it is wrong. Evil. No, no no… There is one reason to be afraid: the recognition that it is RIGHT.
- Yet from those flames, no light – but rather, darkness visible… Note 2
- Follow the screams.
- I destroyed my Ghost, when I was like you. You should consider doing the same. Little good it does you.
- Study everything. Absorb the pattern. Transcend it.
- The dreary plain, forlorn & wild, the seat of desolation, void of light! Ha! Note 3
- Guiding the uninitiated toward a final battle of spectacular futility used to be my specialty, you know. Forgive me if I’m a little rusty.
- When a god’s will is met with force, its might will be unleashed in the form of…hahaha…trickery.
- Some terrors you defeat. Some, you become.
- Listen – death is the last part of living and life is learning to die. The song is the same as the singing; the last truth commands me to eat all the light in the sky. Source
- This is the shape and the point of the tooth: Nothing has ever lived that will not die. Source
- A shape which depends on nothing but itself. Do you see the profundity of that concept? Source
- This is the shape of victory: to rule the universe so absolutely that nothing will ever exist except by your consent. Source
- The idea of that final shape – it slices, razor-sharp, snicker-snack, through the pretense of civilization. Source
- Death is just a word, isn’t it? A catch-all term for the failure to go on – nothing spiritual, nothing with its own quiddity. Source
- We all died once, and it did not prove insurmountable. Source
- That which does not kill you makes you stronger, but what does that mean in the face of immortality? Source
- Listen! Listen. Death, true death, is both failure and liberation. Liberation from a race you had no hope of winning. To kill, then, is a terrible sort of compassion, a dreadful kindness. Source
- Lo, lo, I never sleep, I dance in light and shadow, I never sleep, I will never die. Source
- A dreamer set adrift, caught between schemes – a pleasant pawn for murderous queens… hahaha. Source
- Delusions of purpose, heroism, hope… these are what stand between humanity and true understanding. Source
- Now conscience wakes despair that slumbered – wakes the bitter memory of what he was, what is, and what must be worse… Source
- This is the queen at the end of time, whose sovereignty is eternal because no other sovereign can defeat it. Source
In Regards to Eris Morn
- Eris – my dear Eris. If only you could see us here; if only you had not turned away toward your selfish purpose…
- Come back to us, Eris. Come back. I have seen your future; you are, as ever, fated to be misunderstood, maligned, ruined on the rocks of tragedy…
- Do you ever pause, dear listener, to consider who benefits from all this heroism you commit?
- Were you tricked by the worm that chased the Warmind? Did you truly believe you’d fought one of the beings that the Hive call gods? Ha!
- What is it they say? “The only way to win is not to play“? Impossible. I call it a game, but it’s not; it is the nature of the universe. To exist is to throw your hat in the ring. Note 6
- Do you crave finality, my friend? Listen to the screams on the wind. Let them beckon you. Let them teach you.
- I could flense you apart, molecule by squirming molecule. It is within my power.
- You are a brave light, but a stupid one, too. Source
- Belief in the Light is a thin pane of glass between you and truth, and if you don’t shatter that glass yourself, I will shatter it for you. Source
- Tell me, Guardian: Do you trust me? Do you believe I am an ally of the Light or a servant of the Darkness? What if I told you I was neither? Source
- Banish every memory of what you believe is true. Unshackle yourself. Source
- Sharpen your intentions. When life is strength and strength is death, what is death, if not hope? Source
- What does it mean to die so many times, at the hands of so many enemies and allies? What has death taught you, Guardian? How has it shaped you? Source
- Inflict your desires upon reality, Guardian. Source
- You are a misshapen puzzle piece. You perplex me. You defy the logic which cannot be defied. Source
- But you will not be held back. Gifted with the Traveler’s Light, armed with the secret physics of a lost age, you will tear reality asunder. You will fear nothing, and nothing will not fear you.
- The Traveler came out of the void that surrounds all things. Thus we know that the void is full of power. Thus we enter the void without fear. Small minds will call your abilities blasphemous. They will compare you to the abominable Wizards of the Hive.
In Regards to the Dreaming City
- You walk blind above an abyss, full of trust for a friendly voice.
- You’re playing right into her hands.
- What will you do here, in this world on fire? You could carve your name into the fabric of reality, but you lack the imagination for that, don’t you?
- You! Why would you come here? There is no place less suited for the likes of you, walking in the dreamland of your enemies.
- And what, am I to be your Virgil? A guide, a shepherd? [chuckles] No, no, no… Note 7
- There are no guides here. It is a place of scheming queens & traps unsprung.
- Leave the Dreaming City while you still can, dear squanderer.
- Delve deeper. Make yourself known. They’ll believe you are on of their own. And that is the only way. Source
- Come now, you’ll have to be cleverer than this to break through. Sharpen yourself. Make ready. Source
- Why do you come here? Is it duty to your slavish orthodoxy? Fealty to an absent queen? Sympathy for your Awoken friends? Source
- Ah, my foolish friend, you walk the spine of an ouroboros. Find another way. Source
- The shape needs no followers; no one to enact it, to preach it, to practice it. It is, and will be. There’s nothing else. Hive or no Hive, the end is still the same. So why are you here? Source
- There is only one end to the universe, only one conclusion – what the gods of this place call “The Last True Shape.”
- They’ll carry out their orders with grinding stone & squeaking claw, skittering thrall & blade against bone.
- This is the world the Hive craves: a universe creased by the edge of the sharpest sword.
- War above & trickery below, all within a city built for navigation. The unholy trinity.
- Imagine three great nations under three great queens. The first queen writes a great book of law and her rule is just. The second queen builds a high tower and her people climb it to see the stars. The third queen raises an army and conquers everything. Source
- Oryx would look on all of this and laugh – he would laugh so deep and true… Source
- The song is death. To hear it is to die. Source
- Eir. Ur. Yul. That is the cry now, that is the cry now that the littlest worm has shamed its kin… Source
- It has long been my belief that the binds which hold the greatest Hive terrors could be lifted by releasing the energy stored within their tomb husks.
- These stones. Always in their combat arenas. Do they have a strengthening function? Or are they mere legacy of a forgotten time and realm? The Hive never stopped honing their strength. They missed the point of being dead! Haha, ahh, I’ve heard it said ‘that which does not kill you makes you stronger‘, but what does that mean in the face of immortality?
- A Dreadnaught shields the Hive from the Traveler’s Light. Were we to pass through its deepest layers, our Light would be as a dying sun.
In Regards to the Dreaming City
- Mara is right about one thing: A second Collapse is on the horizon, and this time, there with be no crawling out of the trash heap of humanity. Source
- The Witch Queen’s deception runs deep, question everything, even me… Source
- Do you know the Awoken bury their dead in open-air crypts? It’s a tradition born of a dreadful optimism. Foolish, if you ask me. Source
- This curse is a prototype, I’m sure. A step to something far more cunning.
- Sickness, weakness, bad luck, pestilence – that’s the old idea of a curse. This repetition is an innovation purpose-built for Guardians.
- Oh, Mara, Mara, Mara – I don’t think she knew this would happen! Ha! She presents such a brave face to the world, but she hides her naivete… Source
- The curse itself is how the deceiver manifests; she has learned from her brother’s death. Clever girl, clever girl… Source Note 4
- The curse cannot be unraveled. You’re so deep into the web of her will. Source
- Quria is the key. The Mind simulates Oryx, and thereby masters the power to Take. But of course, Quria is no power unto itself. Source
- The rules of Ascendance have changed, according to the will of a dragon. Source
- If you’re looking for the heart of the curse, you will not find it here. It is smuggled away, secret and safe… Source
Season of the Undying Releases
- You have wandered far. From one enemy’s dreamland to another.
- Come, opener of vacancies.
- Greetings, pawn of the Queen.
- Will you listen? Or will you be like your Vanguard?
- I shall be your Virgil once again…
- Come, sharp one…
- Will you be prepared? Or will you be…boring?
- Listen, listen…
- Come, slayer of Oryx. I have words for you.
Patrol Dialogue (Intro)
- Go where I send you. I have knowledge for you.
- I will teach you what I know. Executions are so much more fun when the martyr thinks they have a chance against the lion.
- Sharpen yourself with knowledge before the true battle begins.
- I have decided to impart upon you some of my knowledge. Listen well.
- Let me teach you. The coming clash will be so much more entertaining if you are prepared for it.
- There is something you must see. Carry your thinking-machine to the place I send you.
- All is not lost; the unconquerable Will. And study of revenge, immortal hate. And courage never to submit or yield. And what is else not to be overcome?
- Words are weapons, thoughts the art of wielding them. Listen well.
Patrol Dialogue (Details)
Anchor of Light
- Those who worked here sought knowledge despite dangers, heedless of consequences. Some seekers found reward, others ruin. Which shall you be?
- Vell Tarlowe was the first of us to fall in the dark below. Assaulted by both his pride and the Wizard Verok. I warned Vell of the dangers posed by the Hive. Being headstrong, I said, was not going to keep him alive. Overwhelmed and smothered by Thrall, his Light was snuffed out. If only he’d listened. What a waste.
- The Brays were here. How fine their avarice, how grand their hubris. Such great spirit echoes through time and space. It lives on long after any mortal form. Are they all gone? I wonder…
- There was a crew of Fallen who took to the Hive’s sword logic. They are all dead now – by their own hands. They sought Ascension, but understood nothing of its meaning. I watched as they slaughtered one another over the course of months. The last of them, with no crew left to lead, walked to Hellmouth’s edge and cast himself into the depths.
- How many crews have called this Ketch home? How many worlds has it plundered in the name of Fallen Houses that have since Crumbled? Now the grand Houses, like this Ketch, are broken things – shades of old glory, like poor Luna. Once majestic, once an inspiration, now nothing more than a shattered relic of glory days beyond reclamation.
- All the Guardians lost here on this dead orb. All the Hive destroyed by our push against their dark will. So much loss on both sides. And always the Fallen, there to pick at the carnage, the scrap – surviving, thriving on the waste of this unending war we call existence.
- The Fallen’s obsession with Luna has cost them much. They come to pillage the remains of human innovation and pick at the Hive’s arcana. But I have yet to understand what drives them to take such a risk when there are other worlds more easily scavenged. Source
- Eris – at the time, unbroken – together with Eriana-3 sought vengeance upon Crota. And they formed a team of powerful Guardians to aid in executing him. Vell Tarlowe, Sai Mota, Omar Agah. And of course, the only one who could truly guide them, me. All of them, so foolish. They passed through this canyon, naiveté at their side, toward their inevitable doom. Source
- The House of Dusk is not the future of the Fallen, but it is a sign of their evolution – of a future yet to come. No longer the desperate fools clinging to a lost history and misguided faith in machines. I am curious as to what the Eliksni will become on the far side of their current struggle. Source
- The pirates came in the wake of our Collapse to pick at our bones. I have no answers as to whether it was bravery or desperation that drove them to scavenge at the edge of the Hive’s most hallowed ground. But the Hellmouth has been rich in its bounty. And many Fallen crews made a name among the old Houses for the treasures stolen from this dead rock. Source
- I offer no set conclusions, but it is my belief that the Fallen dare plunder the Hellmouth’s depth. They know the value in mastering the strange science of their enemy – be it Hive, Human, Vex, or Cabal. They risk much to steal pieces of understanding from us all, until that time when they no longer fear extinction…but inflict it. Source
- Before Crota’s death, the Hive viewed the Fallen as nothing more than annoyance. But now, as they struggle to regain their purpose, the Hive have no patience for distraction. This has led to a renewed conflict as both fight to survive in the face of sustained Guardian aggression. Source
- Though many souls were silenced at the Great Disaster, their memories lingered. A fire was born in the heart of Praxic Warlock Eriana-3. She fought the day of our disaster, lost one of her closest friends, and retreated alongside the survivors. But her Light remained. And she vowed vengeance upon Crota. Source
- The study of alien flora concealed stranger sciences, but it was not without its own merit. They learned much here that has since been lost. Source
- Beyond that day, the Vanguard would learn the true power of Crota’s Will. Of realms between reality and the great beyond. Of Ascendance, I would be their guide. They would learn these things from me. And in them, they would find truth and power. Source
- The question I ponder when considering the Eliksni and their fractured society is how we, the supposed heroes we claim to be, react to a species on the brink? As we are. To my mind, we must be cruel. End them now, while they are on the brink, or risk whatever it is they will one day become. Source
- Though Crota would ultimately face defeat, he was still able to plant the seeds of the Hive within our very home. It was from here that the Hive was launched in Seeder Ships to Earth, spreading Crota’s brood beyond the simple reaches of Luna. Crota may be gone, but the Swarm lives on. Source
- In our own time of need, we failed ourselves. Crota struck us down en masse and destroyed much of what was built here, Moonbase included. The Traveler had come, it had brought us into a Golden Age. And yet little from that era mattered in the shadow of Crota.
- In the quest to fell Crota, we brought with us the desire for vengeance. We brought ego. But with me, I brought curiosity. Reverence. Fascination. And as such, here I sit, my soul still bound to existence. With the exception of Eris, I can’t say the same for the rest. Source
- There were thouse who believed that in Crota, the end had come. From the Moonbase, they cried out for help. Their message beamed far and across the system. It would land with those who would not respond. Deemed to be only “affairs of the City.” Source
- For millennia, humanity gazed at the Moon and envisioned visiting it. Yet, no one dreamed it a trespass. The Hive is not a welcoming host, as you well know.
- Tragic. Casting a line out into the ocean of space, ignorant of what swims out there, waiting in the depths. If they had known the truth, even the barest inkling, they would have shrunk away from its shores in terror.
- Just think of the old colony ships, lumbering toward some distant planet loaded with bodies. And then some soulless cargo package flashes by, shot from this Accelerator and piloted by an AI. It weighs you down, life.
- All great journeys begin with a single step, but not if you stand at the precipice. How does one tell the difference between the horizon and an abyss in a place like this? They couldn’t. Are you certain you can?
- They told others their mission was exobotany, but this fig leaf could not hide their desire. They wanted knowledge the Traveler would not give them. Nothing is sweeter than forbidden fruit.
- In the Hive, the Vanguard faced a new threat they didn’t understand. So they did what they do best – they shot at it. And to their detriment, it shot back. Death was delivered the day of our Great Disaster.
- In the Hive, the Vanguard faced a new threat they didn’t understand. So they did what they do best – they shot at it. And to their detriment, it shot back. Death was delivered the day of our Great Disaster. Source
- You feel it don’t you? The hunger that cannot be sated. What’s next? What if? Why? It eats at us. What we don’t know. Ignorance has never been bliss – not once you’ve learned you lack the truth. Source
- Serenity. Tranquility. Fertility. It seems a fine place for investigating alien life. Yes, but what of Storms? What of Cold? What of Crises? When does a sanctuary become a prison? Source
- We were destined to be found by this ageless expression: the pursuit of the last true shape. If not the Hive, some other adherent. Slay every living disciple of sword logic, but the logic itself – as any hard-coded feature of the cosmos – will simply await rediscovery. Source
- Had the Traveler not come to our fragile home, humanity would’ve carried on as it always had. Reaching blindly in the dark. We likely would’ve extinguished ourselves well before the Hive took up the task. So I ask. Are we fortunate? Or unfortunate? Source
- How long were the Hive on the Moon? How did they arrive? How patient they were, listening to invaders scrabble across its surface. But I do not think they were hiding. They awaited a sign. Source
- Dark the Moon. Dark the night. Hush the station. Hush the Hive. Gone their leaders. Gone the Light. Source
- Before we could leave from planet to planet like fleas, we had to crawl through the void like worms. The accelerator flew humanity’s necessities on swift wings, fitting them from the Moon to the colonies like starlings. But worms do not survive flights with birds. Source
- Exploration and discovery are pleasant but thin euphemisms for conquest. This was as true in our history as in any you’ll find. Our first steps into the inky dark were no different. Lest we forget: The Hive’s lunar settlements predate our own. Source
- From this pit, despair rose to power. Crota climbed out, and we all paid the price for not immediately noticing. We blame him for what happened, refusing to take responsibility for our own ignorance. Knowledge was our only true path to power, and we chose guns blazing instead.
- If you’d asked me long ago what I thought of Eris Morn, you’d have learned kindness does not flow through my veins. But I have since gained a reverence for Eris. I thought her broken. Foolish. But I was the fool. Eris was the best of us all…and still is.
- Deep below, the rudderless Hidden Swarm seek guidance. Order. They won’t find it. Because of what you did – what you didn’t do. It should’ve been your hand guiding them in Oryx’s stead. Yet you disrupted a glorious engine. You, the arrogant, anomalous variable.
- New voices reverberate through the lunar formicary. Heresies whispered in the dark. Below your feet, the Hidden Swarm are acquainting themselves with deeper magics beyond their reckoning. To say nothing of ours.
- This place reeks of death. This could be said of any structure on the Moon, but this hall is…especially saturated. You yourself carry painful memories of this place. Discard them. Their only use is to weigh you down – and to empower your enemy. I wish Eris could see it this way. But she is bound irretrievably to her pain.
- Sai descended into these depths with an unequaled compassion for those around her. That’s the type of thing that gets you killed. If you ask me, Sai desired the respect of her fireteam. She died not realizing he had it all along.
- The fissures appeared when the Pyramid stirred. They quake and belch, setting loose the potent energies that have long simmered just below. Should they be allowed to continue, the Hidden Swarm will make further outgambles to the surface. This is but a taste of the change to come.
- The Hellmouth, the foundry of Crota’s deepest dreams. Source
- Behold, causation in all its exquisite majesty. Your persistence reshapes the Hidden Swarm, in turn, the Swarm reshapes the Moon. Their adaptations will only become more profound, the effects more pronounced. They have you to thank for this. Source
- Fools look at the Hive and see mindlessness. But they bear deep wounds – and they do not forget those who wounded them. Crota, Oryx, Omnigul. Each death shook the Hellmouth to the deepest pit. But as we say. With which doesn’t kill you, et cetera. Just ask Hashladûn. Or her slaughtered sisters. Source
- A series of unfortunate Guardians met their end under the weight of Phogoth’s might. He strew them across the battlefields of the moon and, together with Crota’s brood, gave the Great Disaster its name. Source
- Eris torments herself for her erstwhile fireteam and the fates we marched into together. An appreciated, but needless penance. Our struggle is a grand dialogue. We exchange blood for understanding. It is not tragedy. It is simply the price, and ours to pay. Source
- Countless Guardians perished not just on the battlefields of the Great Disaster, but within the lair of the Hive as well. Having lured them in, the Hive had a plan. It was domination and death. For Guardians, there was no escape that day. Source
- I entered the Hellmouth with a sense of fateful inevitability. We should all die, or worse. I knew this to be true. Woefully unprepared was what we were. I stand by that. But it doesn’t mean I didn’t respect them. I did then, and I always will. Source
- Not even Crota’s brood could fully contain the rage of Phogoth, the Untamed. His power was nearly unmatched. But in the end, the Light overpowered Phogoth, and he was slain at the will of Guardians just like yourself. Source
- The Moon is fragile. Even more so now than before. Look no further than the oozing schisms brought forth by the Pyramid. May they serve as a warning: The Moon has been carved out, far beyond imagination. Fetid miasma rises. It belongs to the Hive now. Source
- Omar Agah entered these depths with his own unique faults: disbelief and distrust. But beneath it all was his truth: fear. The Hive fed off this very fear. Poor Eris had to watch as his Light was stripped from his soul and his essence used to strengthn the Hive. Source
- One wonders the effects of the pyramid on the Hive. If they’ve existed in its shadow for so long, have they ever communed with it?
- Does it burden you, Guardian, to know that your presence here was not simply expected, but desired? That you were summoned? It is no mere coincidence that you, the slayer of Oryx, have been drawn to this place. The Pyramid can’t conjure Nightmares from Hive minds. They require a human psyche – anguished, burdened, Lightbearing vessels.
- Eris was the first to bring the Pyramid to life…was it of her will? Or the Pyramid’s? The Hive must hate her for it after trying for so long to do the same and failing. Or perhaps it’s relief they feel. After so much time, they can finally pursue its power, whether it wants them to or not. Source
- There is much history in the dust here. Grasp a handful and you will hold Light now extinguished. You will hold power misguided. These grounds are covered in the madness of days gone by. Of Guardians and Hive alike. History haunts this place. Source
- The Hidden Swarm’s aberrant behavior sprung from a simple conjecture. What if Oryx was meant to die, so that he might be reborn? Ludicrous, teleological thinking. An affront to everything he held dear. Unfortunately, Oryx is not here to correct them. Source
- The Moon sits lush with schisms. The result of Eris’s curiosity. A Pyramid of pure power with the ability to terraform. Sounds familiar, doesn’t it? If the Traveler is a god of Light, then what does that make the Pyramid who spews our tragedies back at us? We must always question the unknowable, for that is the only path to knowing. Source
- In the absence of the ability to bring Nightmares forth, the Hive manipulates ours, worshiping and even dying for them. No doubt they have plans for the Nightmares. The Hive adapt. They evolve. And they do it quickly. Source
- Leaderless, the Hidden Swarm have sought a replacement. Sword Logic dictates the violent removal of oneself in favor of the powerful. Never underestimate the machinations of the Hive. In the absence of guidance, they are always in search of it. Source
- I could tell you that the Pyramid hid from me as it did from you. But I would be betraying the truth. In this form, sight extends beyond the borders of certain realities. Though the Pyramid came into view. I could not see inside then nor now. But oh, how I wish I could. Source
- The Pyramid hasn’t always held residence on the Moon. Like anything foreign, it arrived here somehow. The chasm would suggest a fall and a crash. And it is as such. Only a simple question lingers. Why? The collapse largely remains a mystery. Source
Additional & Expanded Notes
This is a quote from The Aeneid within Book 6, beginning at lines 126 and continuing with the following:
But to return, and view the cheerful skies,
In this the task and mighty labor lies.
This is spoken to Aeneas by a prophetess, explaining the requirement of his entering the underworld as a part of his journey to land in Italy – a task which is similar to those seen in the legends of Orpheus, Odysseus, and Heracles.
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This is a quote from Paradise Lost, by John Milton (located in the first book at about line 63, describing the hell into which Satan and his followers were cast into by the powers of Heaven). The quote continues with:
…Served only to discover sights of woe,
Regions of sorrow, doleful shades, where peace
And rest can never dwell; hope never comes
That comes to all; but torture without end
Still urges, and a fiery diluge, fed
With ever-burning sulphur unconsumed
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This is a quote from Paradise Lost, by John Milton (located in the first book at about line 180, spoken by the figure of Satan). It is followed shortly by the figure of Satan breaking free and urging his soldiers to follow him to the island of Desolation to gather their strength – and to continue their war against Paradise. It is also here in the works that they construct the capital of Hell, the great tower of Pandemonium, upon the completion of which, they gather once more for the next battle.
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Toland uses the term “deceiver” to reference Savathun.
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Toland uses the term “the sisters” most likely to refer to the Hive Siblings, Xivu Arath and Savathun.
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In the 1983 movie, WarGames, in which the concept of Mutually Assured Destruction (“MAD”) leads the WOPR (“War Operation Plan Response”) supercomputer to conclude that “the only winning move is not to play.”
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Reference here is to Dante Alighieri’s Divine Comedy, in which the spirit of the Roman poet Virgil serves as the main guide through the realms of Hell and Purgatory for the main character.