An Ace Race: The Flood

The Flood – Halo Series

Although I have had mixed feelings towards The Flood of the Halo series, ultimately I have to admit that they are a fantastic race and few sci-fi races in gaming can inspire a sense of dread in quite the same way.

The Flood are an alien parasitic race which almost wiped out organic life in the galaxy thousands of years before the first Halo game is set, in the first game they are rediscovered and unwittingly released by the human and covenant forces that have landed on the Halo ring.

The Flood are introduced fantastically, there is little hint as to what they may be other than they inspire fear in the main enemy up to this point – the Covenant. When initially encountered the tension is high and although the weaker parasites are the first enemies encountered the situation quickly escalates to a point where you are in a desperate fight for your life.

The thing I always loved about The Flood was just how alien they were. Most sci-fi alien races have at least some kind of humanoid feature that makes them seem a little more relatable however there is none of this with the Flood, they are horrific mutant monsters bent on the consumption of organic life. I especially liked the way that The Flood combined their organic mutations to the technology they encountered which meant that what initially appeared to be mindless beast like mutants could run around with firearms and pilot vehicles and even spacecraft.

I’ve got to say that my love for the flood began to ebb after the second game when the Grave mind was added – a character that made the Flood less of a mindless all consuming tide and more of a race with direction and purpose. I like the ideas of animalistic alien life that acts purely out of instinct rather than a form of high intelligence. Despite this I have to say that the flood remain one of my favorite sci-fi enemies of all time and I hope they can inspire similar races to be created for games in the future.

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