Wednesday, November 14, 2012

EXP Podcast #197: Pulp and the Legacy of Halo 4

Master Chief fan art
by Ling Yun via Deviant Art
What do Master Chief, James Bond, John Carter, Luke Skywalker, and Shakespear have in common (besides huge egos)? They are all lasting cultural icons that show no sign of disappearing from popular consciousness anytime soon. Can we consider all of these "pulp" works in a sense? Join us this week on the podcast as Scott and I discuss Halo 4, the strength of Halo's lore, and the lasting repercussions of 343i taking creative control over a modern gaming hero.

As always, check out the articles that inspired this conversation in the show notes below and be sure to leave your thoughts on the matter in the comments below.

To listen to the podcast:

- Subscribe to the EXP Podcast via iTunes here.  Additionally, here is the stand-alone feed.
- Listen to the podcast in your browser by left-clicking here. Or, right-click and select "save as link" to download the show in MP3 format.
- Subscribe to this podcast and EXP's written content with the RSS link on the right.

Show notes:

- Runtime: 33 min 49 sec
- "How Halo Went From Video Game to Pulp Empire," by Erik Sofge via Popular Mechanics.
- "Why Video Games Are the New Pulps," by Mark Bernardin via io9.
- Music provided by Brad Sucks


  1. Hey guys, I just thought I'd comment in regards to the Halo Novels. I've read them all (I know!) and apart from the current Greg Bear books, I've enjoyed them all. My recommendation is starting with The Fall Of Reach, which was the first book written and is what the game Halo:Reach is based on. It is universally regarded as the best Halo book, and even non-Halo fans have enjoyed it. The rest delve much deeper into the lore, and may be a bit too esoteric for some.

  2. Compared to me, you're like some kind of Halo historian! Thanks for the recommendation. It's nice to hear that Fall of Reach sounds like a good book in general rather than just a good Halo book. Onto the reading list it goes!

  3. Also, if you want to learn a little more of the story surrounding Halo 4, I would recommend the Karen Traviss novels. Both Halo: Glasslands and Halo: The Thursday War take place in years leading up to Halo 4 and centre around the UNSC Infinity and feature some characters from previous novels. Karen Traviss is the writer behind Gears Of War 3, and she has written quite a few game series novels. I enjoy her cynical take on war, and her writing can pack quite a punch.