Halo Encyclopedia: The Definitive Guide to the Halo Universe
The Halo Encyclopedia: The Definitive Guide to the Halo Universe is an official guidebook of the Halo universe, published by Dorling Kindersley and created in conjunction with 343 Industries. The encyclopedia has a foreword written by Frank O'Connor, head of 343 Industries, with Tobias Buckell editing. The cover of the book was illustrated by Craig Mullins.
The original edition of the Encyclopedia was released on October 19, 2009. An updated edition of the Halo Encyclopedia with an extra sixteen pages (including information on Halo: Reach) was released on September 19, 2011.
The Halo Encyclopedia begins with a foreword by Frank O'Connor. It then introduces the Master Chief, the Covenant and many other aspects of the Halo universe. Chapter One contains a timeline (complete to publication), followed by chapters on humans, Spartans, the Covenant, the Flood, the Forerunners, the Human-Covenant War, science and technology, transport, locations and finally weapons - before a glossary of terms, index and acknowledgements.
Reception and errors
Reception to the Halo Encyclopedia has been mixed. Some reviewers and readers praised the book's detailed approach to its content. However, other reviewers stated that the book's images are often of poor quality and "at times seem haphazardly thrown together." Others criticisms centered on the work's poor editing, most notably its poor spelling and grammar. Misattributions are also frequent, with the Scout and Rogue armor being referred to as one armor type. Later printings of the Encyclopedia feature improved editing, eliminating many mistakes that exist in the initial printing, including several mislabelings and misattributions. Nonetheless, several factual inaccuracies remain. For example, the ranking system of the Brutes is mangled, with a picture of a Major labeled as a Minor, and the color of an Ultra's armor is mis-cited as cyan instead of violet.
It has also been noted that a number of descriptions in the book are ostensibly based upon, even quoted from, those of Halopedia. This has also resulted in several errors. Examples of such content include:
2011 revised edition
The 2011 edition incorporates new content, mainly image assets, from Halo: Reach, as well as correcting some of the mislabelings in the original. However, many of the errors remain. 343 Industries Content Creator Jeremy Patenaude has acknowledged that many of the errors remain in the new edition, and stated that future efforts to create a Halo universe encyclopedia would be rewritten from the ground up.