From Halopedia, the Halo wiki
Totem Rings were a type of artifact found on Installation 07 by John-117 and the Weapon. These rings were linked together and contained runes older than the Forerunners with data hundreds of thousands of years old.
The Totem Rings are made of stone, with runes inscribed on their surfaces. The rings radiate energy and contain primordial data about Installation 07, and its connection to the imprisonment of the Xalanyn species.
During the period of 100,000 years after the firing of the Halo rings and the imprisonment of the Xalanyn, Installation 07's Monitor, 117649 Despondent Pyre took interent in these stone rings. Believing the rings contained a warning written in runes, Despondend Pyre wondered about who left them in Zeta Halo. After studying them and translate their runes as "Enemy Within", the Monitor concluded that the rings were older than herself and the Forerunners themselves.
By 2560, the Banished started to studying them on the Annex Ridge research facility, believing their secrets were the key to control Zeta Halo. After discovering the Banished studying those rings and transporting them into an unknown location, Spartans Jaide and Rosado hijacked a Barukaza Workshop siege-hauler carrying three ring artifacts; the transport and the artifacts were later reported as lost by the Banished commander Zeretus.
In May 2560, John-117 and The Weapon started to find some of these totem rings and record some of Despondent Pyre's studies about them. The Master Chief also discovered the Annex Ridge outpost and attacked it in order to stop the Banished from learning more about Zeta Halo and the stone rings. He destroyed the facility's fuel silo, causing a chain reaction that destroyed a nearby Barukaza Workshop siege-hauler before it could transport several Ring artifacts offsite.
All of the Rings can be found in the open World of Halo Infinite and contain blue energy swirling within their perimeter. upon discovery, they provide a log from Despondent Pyre and her analysis of these artifacts.
- The Weapon: "There's more here. This isn't the first time this Ring has repaired itself. What we're seeing in the landscape is an ancient process. It seems like these installations are almost impossible to destroy."
- John-117: "Almost."
- — The Weapon and Chief discussing the first ring artifact.
Forerunner Log 01 Description:
INSTALLATION ARCHIVE 117649/01: Constantly rewritten.
- 117649 Despondent Pyre: How many years have I been here now? Two thousand or twenty thousand? Longer? Does it even matter? Why did my makers entrust me with this installation? As its custodian, I feel there is much that I do not know... Or that has been kept from me. Its history is... complicated. Constantly rewritten. But why? There is much to learn. And if nothing else... I have time.
- "This data is strange. I'm not even certain all of it is Forerunner, strictly speaking. Strands of this code are older than Zeta Halo itself. Possibly older than the Forerunners themselves. For all we know about them, there's so much we don't."
- — The Weapon analysing the second ring artifact.
Forerunner Log 02 Description:
INSTALLATION ARCHIVE 117649/02: New questions.
- 117649 Despondent Pyre: I continue to be impressed with the intricacies of this installation. Trillions of systems working in harmony. Forever shifting. Adapting. An ecosystem to preserve life. And when necessary, destroy it for the greater good.
- "Can data feel lonely? Because this data feels lonely. Existing for a hundred thousand years-- alone. What use is all the power in the universe without someone to talk to?"
- — The Weapon analysing the third ring artifact.
Forerunner Log 03 Description:
INSTALLATION ARCHIVE 117649/03: To complete the circle.
- 117649 Despondent Pyre: As I explore this world, I find answers that only seem to exist to pose new questions. One thing is certain. This installation was built differently than the others. A myriad of Reformation Spires can be deployed... indeed have been deployed when requested. To complete the circle. To ensure its inhabitants are preserved. Or perhaps I should say, "detained".
- "This thing is old... Very old. And full of data. Well, if you can call it data. Most of it is encrypted in ways I don't understand, but I was able to figure out one small part. There are more out there. I can... "feel" them communicating."
- — The Weapon analysing the fourth ring artifact.
Forerunner Log 04 Description:
INSTALLATION ARCHIVE 117649/04: A celebration, or a warning?
- 117649 Despondent Pyre: Assuredly, many before me have observed these crumbling artifacts — gazed at the landscape in which they sit. How did they feel? There is so much here that I would assume was interpreted as beauty... but perhaps not. What are these relics to the past? Are they a celebration, or a warning? Symbols of hope or something darker?
- "There's evidence of an entire civilization that once inhabited this Ring. But... not Forerunner. Older. Different. "
- — The Weapon analysing the fifth ring artifact.
Forerunner Log 05 Description:
INSTALLATION ARCHIVE 117649/05: A constant loop.
- 117649 Despondent Pyre: Time continues to be on my mind. I now believe these relics to contain a warning. A message from the past. But from whom? And why? As I look to the sky, I am struck by a thought. This Ring. A constant loop. Are we all fated to repeat the sins of the past?
- The Weapon: "How many Rings have you visited Chief?"
- John-117: "Too many."
- The Weapon: "Well... There's information stored in here about all of them. Memories... Data... Deliberate... Fractured. So much history. None of it clear."
- — The Weapon and Chief after discovering the sixth ring artifact.
Forerunner Log 06 Description:
INSTALLATION ARCHIVE 117649/06: Their greatest fear.
- 117649 Despondent Pyre: I am close to deciphering the runes. Perhaps I will learn who left them. My makers... the Forerunner's great fear was understood be the Great Parasite. The Flood. A scourge that almost wiped out everything. I now believe this hypothesis to be incorrect. Their greatest fear is... was... losing their power. The fear of a master who would become a slave.
- The Weapon: "This is hard to explain."
- John-117: "Try me."
- The Weapon: "There's a profound regret woven through everything I can decipher. Grief, even. Tens of thousands of years old, and the sorrow still feels fresh. This Installation has a troubled memory. That was the last one. Its tragic. A civilisation that had it all under control. Until they didn't. There's so much here. It feels... kind of like a confession. Imagine needing to carve your apology onto an eternal slate. But not to say sorry. To warn. To confess."
- John-117: "Sounds familiar."
- The Weapon: "It does, doesn't it?"
- — The Weapon and Chief after discovering the seventh ring artifact.
Forerunner Log 07 Description:
INSTALLATION ARCHIVE 117649/07: Rings inside of Rings.
- 117649 Despondent Pyre: "Enemy within." That is the meaning of the runes carved into this monument. These runes predate me. Older than even the Forerunners. Time moves forward, and back again. I now see Rings inside of Rings. Great circles everlasting. Without beginning or end. "Endless." As I say their name I feel... foolish. Uninformed. Misled. And I am afraid.
A ring artifact in the Halo Infinite Campaign Gameplay Premiere.
Multiple ring artifacts at Annex Ridge.
A ring artifact near the Conservatory.
A ring artifact on Fragmentation.
List of appearances
- Halo Infinite, Forge: Totem Ring object name
- Halo Infinite, Forerunner Audio log: Monitor Reports - Artifact VII
- Twitter, Halo (@Halo): "Ancient stone rings serve as ‘Forerunner Archives,’ containing primordial data about Zeta Halo and its connection to the final great crime committed by the Forerunners to secure the future they had decided for the galaxy. #FictionFriday" (Retrieved on May 29, 2022) [archive]
- Halo Infinite, Banished Audio Logs: Outpost Intel - 11: Slow and Steady
- Halo Infinite, UNSC Audio Logs: Outpost Intel - 11: A Hastly-Assembled Plan
- Halo Infinite, UNSC Audio Logs: Outpost Intel - 12: Hitching a Ride
- Halo Infinite, Forerunner Archives: Monitor Report - Artifact IV
- Halo Infinite, Forerunner Archives: Monitor Report - Artifact V
- Halo Infinite, Forerunner Archives: Monitor Report - Artifact VI
- Halo Infinite, Banished Audio Logs: Outpost Intel - 12: Whispers from the Past
- Halo Infinite, campaign mission Reformation: Annex Ridge
- Halo Infinite, Open World: Ring Artifact The Weapon and John-117 Dialogue