Breaking Strain

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"I've been following the odyssey of the Master Chief since the very first Halo, which hooked me in with its epic scope and rich game world. I'm thrilled that I finally get to tell a story in a universe that has given me so much fun as a gamer - it was great to revisit the end of the Covenant War in my tale Breaking Strain, a human drama about the fears that can divide us and the hopes that can unite us."
— James Swallow[1]

Breaking Strain is one of several short stories in Halo: Fractures: Extraordinary Tales from the Halo Canon. Written by James Swallow and taking place in the immediate aftermath of the Human-Covenant War in 2553, the story follows the crew of the shipwrecked UNSC Dark Was the Night and their uneasy coexistence with the small colony of Losing Hand.[1]

Plot synopsis[edit]

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Technology and equipment

Production notes[edit]


  • Darren Leone identifies Slight List as a Huragok and claims that the "Covenant call them 'Engineers'". This is actually backwards, as "Engineer" is the human nickname for the creatures with "Huragok" being their proper name used by the Covenant.
  • After Kevin-A282 fires a round from his SRS99 sniper rifle, he is described as manually cycling the bolt to remove the empty shell casing from the chamber. The SRS99 series is gas-operated, meaning that the casing would already have been ejected at the moment he fired the rifle, and so pulling back the charging handle would not have the described effect; assuming he had more rounds in the magazine, the action would actually remove the new cartridge that would already have been chambered when the weapon was fired.


  1. ^ a b Halo Waypoint - Books, Browsers, and Big Team