"When in doubt, flee."
Ă˘â‚¬â€ť Unggoy philosophy
Unggoy (Latin, Monachus frigus, meaning "cold monk"), also known as Grunts by many individuals, are a sapient species of squat bipedal xeno-arthropodal vertebroid lifeforms from the planet Balaho. In 2142, the Unggoy became the fourth species to be assimilated into the Covenant. During their tenure in the hegemony, Unggoy were always the lowest-ranking species in general terms, and were frequently mistreated by members of almost every other race, especially the Kig-Yar, Jiralhanae, and Sangheili.
Unggoy were primarily used by the Covenant as laborers orĂ˘â‚¬â€ťin combat situationsĂ˘â‚¬â€ťcannon fodder. They are commonly referred to as "Grunts", mainly because they are considered weak compared to other former Covenant species and because they performed the majority of the labor required by the empire.
Attribute Dice: 12D (NPC)/18D (PC)
-Downtrodden: Due to the Unggoy's treatment within the Covenant, the Banished, and other hardships, they have -2D to Willpower skill rolls.
-Fast Learners: Unggoy can learn new skills at half the times listed in the Star Wars D6 rules.
-Pack Mentality: When operating in groups of three or more Unggoy get +2D to Willpower skill rolls, and an extra +2D if they are being egregiously wronged.
-Sense Of Smell: Unggoy have +1D to Perception when using their sense of smell to detech enemies, and/or to their Search skill to track by sent, and other related actions.
-Large Arms: +1D to Climbing skill rolls, and +2 Physical Damage (bludgeoning) in hand-to-hand combat.
-Slow But Excited: +1D to Jumping skill rolls.
-Barbs: Unggoy exoskeletons have barbs spread over certain areas of their exoskeleton. If an attacker attacks with hand-to-hand attacks and rolls a 1 on their Wild Die they recieve 3D Damage from thye barbs (roll to against Damage as normal). If Unggoy wish to use their barbs in hand-to-hand combat, they give +1D Physical Damage (Slashing) and are Moderate Difficulty to use due to their positions on their bodies (Though this opens the door for a potential Unggoy Martial Arts skill).
-Barnacles: Unggoy may develop barnacles on their hard skin over time (3-6 months). Difficult First Aid/Medicine skill roll to remove, Moderate skill roll to treat afterwards for recovery. If not removed they will reduce the Unggoy's Dexterity -1D per year they are not removed. GMs could treat this more as a story factor instead of a debilitating effect.
-Exoskeleton: Unggoy have +1D VS Physical/+2 VS Energy to resist Damage.
-Methane Breathers: Unggoy require specialized breathing harnesses when operating in non-methane atmospheric environments, which is where most other species will encounter them. These may be integrated into whatever armor they wear, and may be cumbersome (-1D Dexterity).
-Spacewalk: Although they require an atmosphere to breathe, Unggoy are capable of surviving in the vacuum of space without sealed, full-body gear. However, they must employ sealed face masks in order to breathe, as well as presumably to protect their facial tissues.
-Downtrodden: The Unggoy come from a world that experienced environmental collapse over a hundred thousand years ago and has yet to recover. This led to extreme winters where they had to kill the elderly and the weak by necessity to survive. Further, they are considers lacking intelligence by the other various Covenant species and by humans, and are often mistreated because of this.
-Fast Reproduction: Unggoy breed very rapidly comapred to other sentient species. Due to this, their mating has caused problems for the Covenant in the past by stretching available resources like food. This can cause strains on any allies, factions, or race, etc, trying to aid the Unggoy as a species and can make diplomatic relations strained to say the least.
-Fearful: It is not uncommon for Unggoy to run away in fear against dangerous odds, especially when their much braver and not so intelligent commanding officers just took on "The Demon" and lost badly. It's a healthy survival trait.
-Lethaly Humorous: Humans have been known to make fun of Unggoy for their high-pitched voices and "breathing farts" due to their breathing methane. Many UNSC marines have had such joke be their last before an unhappy Unggoy had them for dinner.
-Respect (Sangheili): After the defeat of the Unggoy Grunt Rebellion, the Sangheili Elites came to respect them for their abilities in combat. This led to the unggoy being able to be trained as soldiers, and many Elites prefer to fight alongside Grunts instead of other less reliable Covenant member species. However, the Unggoy still have a tendency to push the limits of this respect as they are known not to be focused on the task at hand, are still not the bravest of soldiers unless something pisses them off en masse, and are notorious for sleeping on the job.
-Rivalry (Kig-Yar): The Kig-Yar are one step higher in the Covenant hierarchy, but still get treated poorly, so they treat the Unggoy worse than most other Covenant species. This has led to many conflicts between the two species, and was even the spark for the Grunt Rebellion where the unggoy may have defeated the Covenant if not for the intervention of an Arbiter. Even after the collapse of the Covenant Unggoy and Kig-Yar dislike each other at the best of times, and will probably try to kill each other long before getting to the worst of times.
-Sleeping On The Job: When stationed to guard important or strategic locations for the Covenant or Banished, Grunts still find time to find a comfy hidden place (or not) and doze off, allowing opportunistic Kig-Yar and Spartans to sneak up on them.
-Survivors: After everything they've been through, it must be said that the Unggoy have survived some pretty deadly situations that would have exterminated most other species. Grunts may die in droves, but there's always those few that find a way to survive against all the odds (see "Thirsty Grunt").
-Underappreciated: While massive numbers of Unggoy form the backbone of any Covenant or Banished army, and Unggoy form the same for their labor forces, they are often not appreciated for their hard work, or how much crud they put up with in these societies.
Unggoy are, in general, poor soldiers in terms of skill and combat ability. They are poor shots when not focused, are physically weak, and are tactically inept as a rule. If their commanders are eliminated during combat, they frequently panic and scatter in random directions. However, what Unggoy may lack in individual skill, they make up for with tenacity and sheer numbers. The Covenant used the high breeding rate of the Unggoy to their advantage in the Human-Covenant War, where squads of Unggoy frequently overpowered UNSC personnel through force of numbers.
Unggoy are the only Covenant species to breathe methane rather than oxygen. Their combat armor/harness has an integrated methane re-breather system, as Unggoy are unable to survive for long periods of time without methane due to asphyxiation. Unggoy could be afflicted by barnacles; the removal of barnacles leads to deep, oozing pores in their chitinous skin.
Psychology and behavior
Although other species generally regard the Unggoy as a dim-witted race, many have proven to be very intelligent, resourceful, and knowledgeable. Indeed, the general perception of the Unggoy being inherently unintelligent is almost certainly a result of their poor education and training within the Covenant. Unggoy are one of the most gregarious and sociable of the Covenant races and possess a very strong pack mentality, often associating with each other in groups. This numerical superiority and pack mentality allows for their sense of cultural identity to remain, despite a number of hardships, including their extreme subservience to the other races of the Covenant, as well as the dark time following reintroduction after the activation of the Halo Array.
Unggoy develop sensory-motor integration relatively rapidly, and possess unburdened neural pathways which allow them to absorb knowledge more freely compared to the other Covenant species. As such, they were often tasked by the Covenant with monitoring space for traces of human communication. In addition, many Unggoy have developed a clear understanding of two or even three human languages. This advantage serves as a river of confidence in times of great stress for them. The Unggoy Deacon Dadab was also able to learn and communicate in Huragok sign language.
On the battlefield, Unggoy are generally not very creative, although they are quite capable of handling weaponry and operating vehicles and machinery such as Ghosts and Shades.
Anatomy and physiology
The taxonomic classification of the Unggoy has been a source of some confusion for the United Nations Space Command. Because they possess exoskeletons, they have been identified as being analogous to Earth arthropods; despite this, the Unggoy are actually a vertebrate species. The UNSC misclassified the species as arthropodal due to their physiological similarities to terrestrial arthropods; among other differences, the Unggoy circulatory system is apparently closed as opposed to the open systems characteristic of many arthropods. More accurately, the species should be considered xeno-arthropodal vertebrates which possess substantialĂ˘â‚¬â€ťalbeit hypotheticalĂ˘â‚¬â€ťgenetic influences from primate-like amphibians that once dwelt in Balaho's aphotic zones. This taxonomically incorrect nomenclature persists as late as 2557 as an ad hoc identifier, though the pressures of the Human-Covenant War and reconstruction have made such concerns trivial at best.
Unggoy share a number of features with different animal species on Earth. Like primates, they walk both bipedally and with the aid of their oversized forearms. However, their bodies are armored with a hard exoskeleton as with crabs and insects. Their mouths have a set of small, pointed teeth, much like reptiles. Unggoy are on average about four to five feet tall and are relatively weak compared to other sapient species. The Unggoy have flat, three-toed feet, with another toe on the back of their feet. Although they can easily walk upright on two legs, they may often use their arms to move in a quadrupedal fashion. While carrying armaments, they are forced to walk upright so that they may support their weapons with their hands, but while trying to flee, or while patrolling without a weapon drawn, they use their oversized arms as forelegs to add speed or stability to their gait. Their eyesight and hearing are average, and seem to have a very well-developed sense of smell, sometimes sniffing the air to detect traces of foes or hidden enemies. This is facilitated through the olfactory membranes installed in their masks. Unggoy have oversized forearms, while their upper arms and thighs are relatively small. This has allowed them to be quite excellent climbers over rocky terrain, although they are rather clumsy when walking upright. Their large arms help the Unggoy in hand-to-hand combat and scaling heights, but make movement around tight corridors or manipulation of small, delicate objects difficult. To protect themselves from the voracious predators of Balaho, the Unggoy have a rigid exoskeleton that is lined with sharp barbs that covers large portions of their backs, arms, and legs. They also have an astonishingly fast finger reflex speed, as they can fire a plasma pistol at almost the same rate a Sangheili can with a plasma rifle.
Unggoy also have thick, bioluminescent, light-blue blood, possibly a result of methane-based proteins in the blood to facilitate methane-based respiration. Like Earth's horseshoe crabs, it is possible that their blood is blue due to high copper content. They also possess yellowish-green colored viscera, visible in an unused texture seen when an Unggoy is decapitated via glitches.
Although they require an atmosphere to breathe, Unggoy are capable of surviving in the vacuum of space without sealed, full-body gear. However, they must employ sealed face masks in order to breathe, as well as presumably to protect their facial tissues.
Some Unggoy, commonly seen among bands of Covenant remnant forces in the mid 2550s, have exoskeletons that cover only patches on their bodies, leaving most of their skin exposed; the paucity of chitin means that the elbow and knee spikes of these individuals are less pronounced. Unlike other Unggoy, which have a chitinous protrusion that covers the groin and posterior, these Unggoy are unarmored in this area, exposing their primate-like buttocks. Their necks are also several times longer than normal (Unggoy typically have almost non-existent necks) and their heads are set farther forward; folds of loose skin hang down from their necks and chins, likely due to the relative lack of chitin. Their eyes are reddish orange and feature black, cross-shaped pupils, unlike the solid red or yellow eyes of their kin. Their mouths are set farther inward and house larger, more pointed teeth. These specimens have much stouter legs and have longer and thinner fingernails than the rest of the species, and they possess claws meant for climbing and digging on their feet instead of the more common hoof-like digits. What sets these Unggoy apartĂ˘â‚¬â€ťmorphologically speakingĂ˘â‚¬â€ťis that they are sourced from specific breeding zones. This indicates either prolonged genetic drift in refugia populations or induced selection. In any case, such morphological variation can be likened to the differences among Earth's dog breeds.
Unggoy breed prodigiously, with large egg clutches and short childhood periods. Adulthood is reached between the ages of 5 and 8 years. This combined with the large number of young per clutch, which could range from 5 to 12 Unggoy, and rapid sensory-motor integration development was one of the primary reasons why the Covenant cleverly used the breeding habits of the Unggoy to their advantage in battle, deploying the Unggoy as cannon fodderĂ˘â‚¬â€ťthis would play a key-role in their war against humanity. Overpopulation is a serious problem and in non-war times, strict laws are placed on Unggoy breeding.
Unggoy do value their ties to their offspring, but are usually separated from their families at an early age by the requirements of military service to the Covenant. They resent this greatly, but because of their low social status in the Covenant, they are unable to muster any response.
The Ark and reseeding
Unggoy are believed to have evolved from smaller amphibious primates. Prior to the activation of the Halo Array, the Unggoy had managed to achieve a Tier 4 society on their homeworld, Balaho. However, the planet and the Unggoy civilization was devastated by the collapse of its biosphere due to massive global over-industrialization.
The Unggoy were one of many species indexed by the Librarian for preservation on Installation 00 from the firing of the Halo Array. They were subsequently returned to their homeworld Balaho, where they began re-building their culture.
Induction into the Covenant
In 2142, the Unggoy and their defenseless homeworld were discovered by the Covenant. Most species of the Covenant became incorporated due to faith or mutual beneficence, however the Unggoy were forced into lowly positions within the Covenant through force and aggressive conversion. The Unggoy were quickly conquered with little resistance and were the seventh species to be inducted into the empire. The species was quick to become one of the most devoted followers of the Covenant religion and the Great Journey. It even became a popular notion among the Unggoy, thanks to the theologian, Ang'napnap the Enlightened, that the Forerunners' pre-ascension forms were akin to their very own. By the time of their discovery by the Covenant, the Unggoy homeworld was still recovering from its ecological collapse over a hundred millennia earlier, and the Unggoy's Tier 6 civilization had yet to return to its former state.
Being the lowest-ranked species of the Covenant, they are bitter rivals with the Kig-Yar, who are also low-ranked. The higher-ranking races of the Covenant have often ignored this rivalry. The growing Unggoy population on High Charity forced Kig-Yar to relocate their homes to accommodate the Unggoy. The move put stress on Kig-Yar females, which led to an increase in infant mortality, while Unggoy that were forced to share habitats with the Kig-Yar occasionally trampled their nests, inadvertently. The breaking point came when a junior staffer in the Ministry of Concert discovered evidence of the Kig-Yar planning to poison recreational narcotics the Unggoy enjoyed, which would have left them sterile. However, the Minister of Concert and the High Council refused to investigate the matter, as they were willing to accept several thousand sterile Unggoy rather than risk upsetting the Kig-Yar. The rising tensions with the Kig-Yar and the general disinterest from the other Covenant races led to the Unggoy Rebellion in 2462. While the rebellion was ultimately put down thanks to an Arbiter partially glassing Balaho, the Unggoy proved that they were not the cowards they had been long deemed, and could indeed be vicious fighters when provoked. After the uprising's conclusion, as was their tradition, the Sangheili forgave the surviving Unggoy and allowed them to enter the Covenant military as armed infantry units, rather than the unarmed cannon fodder as which they had previously served. The Unggoy rebelled several more times in Covenant history, including the Sixteenth Unggoy Disobedience, which was quickly ended by the Ministry of Preservation's Ripa 'Moramee.
Despite the low place they have in the Covenant hierarchy, the true irony is that the Unggoy's entry into the Covenant has ensured their species' survival. Membership in the Covenant granted the Unggoy freedom from risk of extinction during Balaho's two winters, as they now have access to sufficient supplies of food. Infant mortality has decreased to below fifty percent, and geronticide is no longer a necessity for survival. The average life expectancy for non-combatant Unggoy has doubled. Their incorporation into the Covenant likely also alleviated the threat of the Blue Death, which Unggoy typically fear.
The Unggoy were one of the first races in the Covenant to encounter humanity. During the First Battle of Harvest, Jiralhanae forces had Unggoy secure Harvest's orbital Tiara station. Most of the Unggoy present on the planet were killed in the battle; some were even killed by Jiralhanae and Yanme'e. In 2535, the High Prophet of Truth allowed Kig-Yar Reth to amass an army of thousands of Unggoy on the moon of Metisette to use to invade the human homeworld. Reth's plans were foiled by the Insurrectionists of the Rubble, UNSC Midsummer Night, and a team of Sangheili Zealots that believed the Unggoy and Kig-Yar to be heretics, unaware of Truth's orders. Most of the Unggoy on the moon were killed during the Battle of Metisette. The Unggoy's large numbers and fast breeding proved to be a pivotal asset to the Covenant during the Human-Covenant War, as they were able to overwhelm human forces with their sheer numbers, and were even known to have massacred an entire platoon.
The Unggoy obeyed other Covenant races out of fear more than religious faith. During the Great Schism, as the Unggoy did not ally with a particular side, and stayed with whoever commanded them, most likely out of subservient fear to their current masters. However, many of those serving under the Jiralhanae still held support for the Sangheili and revered Arbiter Thel 'Vadam, pointing out to their comrades that they once served under him. The Minister of Discovery believed that the Unggoy would follow the strongest side in the civil war.
"ItĂ˘â‚¬â„˘s so shiny! Me seem to member things looking preeeeeetty bleak there for a while, with me anĂ˘â‚¬â„˘ all the other Unggoy spendinĂ˘â‚¬â„˘ years just mostly running away from green demons, or mean boss flappy-mouths who just wanted to make sure we got shotted at first. But nowĂ˘â‚¬Â¦ well now the blue lady helps us. I meen, itĂ˘â‚¬â„˘s weird and confusing and all because she used to help the green guy be mean to us, then she was mean to the green guy, then nice to usĂ˘â‚¬Â¦ I donĂ˘â‚¬â„˘t know, sheĂ˘â‚¬â„˘s definitely the most confusing blue lady IĂ˘â‚¬â„˘ve seen Ă˘â‚¬â€ś I mean, sheĂ˘â‚¬â„˘s really the ONLY one IĂ˘â‚¬â„˘ve seen, but whatevers. Anyway, she must have feeled bad for us gettingĂ˘â‚¬â„˘ kicked around all the time cause now she sends us stuff to eat and things to be buildedĂ˘â‚¬Â¦"
Ă˘â‚¬â€ť Hamyap on the Created occupation of Balaho
After the Human-Covenant War, at least some of the Unggoy continued working for the Sangheili as farmers on Sanghelios, while others continued to work in the military under either their Sangheili or Jiralhanae commanders. Many Unggoy returned to Balaho after the war. A number of Unggoy joinedĂ˘â‚¬â€ťor were drafted intoĂ˘â‚¬â€ťthe various splinter groups that upheld the Covenant's religious beliefs after the war, most notably Jul 'Mdama's Covenant. ONI surveys record no off-planet transport from Balaho since "Solipsis" and seem to indicate that facilities on Balaho's primary satellite Buwan has been abandoned, though both remain under observation. Moderate Unggoy populations have been observed in Sangheili systems at various intervals. The Office of Naval Intelligence speculates that several independent vessels and colonial facilities are under the control of Unggoy factions, yet no significant populations of unaffiliated Unggoy are known to exist among the human colonies. By 2558, some Unggoy had taken up residence in the city of Paxopolis on the Forerunner shield world of Trevelyan.
Some Unggoy would find themselves in more respected positions in the post-war years. Within the Swords of Sanghelios, they were treated as equals and two of them, Bibjam and Stolt, were known to have even had command over Sangheili.
After October 28, 2558, the Unggoy on Balaho allied themselves with Cortana and the Created, and they were granted with nearly limitless resources: ships loaded with advanced technology arrived, new agricultural support stations appeared in orbit, awaiting eager workers to feed the desperate masses below. This gave the chaotic conditions of Balaho a semblance of stability and order, as well as a new purpose. With their pressing requirements Ă˘â‚¬â€ś food, shelter, medicine Ă˘â‚¬â€ś met, Balaho's finest designers and crafters set out to work tirelessly to build their future.
Although the Unggoy culture has been largely wiped out as a result of constant indoctrination by the Covenant, they do retain a degree of their cultural identity as a result of their inherent tenacity. Of what is known, the Unggoy generally live in small, tribal societies which are typically defined as being matriarchal. Unggoy family structure is polyamorous, with several male and female Unggoy living together. On Balaho, Unggoy had to constantly produce food to ensure that they had enough stocked during the planet's winter seasons. On a near-daily basis, the corpses of those that succumbed to Balaho's plagues had to be burned to further prevent infections. Both of these problems were solved when the Unggoy were discovered by the Covenant. Unggoy universally agree that their species is embodied by three pillars: ruggedness, agility, and lethality. The wise Ang'napnap the Enlightened, the charismatic Awlphhum Who Became Tolerable, and the strategist Yayep the Archdeacon of Indolence are revered as historical heroes by the Unggoy.
Many Unggoy are interested in human culture. During their service with the Covenant, Unggoy enjoyed trading human communication files, such as soap operas and sitcoms, through their own black market. Unggoy often gamble with each other and often play games; one in particular, hunting rock, involves two Unggoy competing to kill the most scrub grubs. Unggoy were also known to take recreational narcotics called infusions by adding them to their portable methane tanks. The chemical benzene, referred to as "Lovely lung gold" and a "sacred aromatic", is also considered a recreational drug by Unggoy.
Role within the Covenant
"But they are among the Covenant's most devoted seekers after the Great Journey, sacrificing themselves in great numbers on the battlefield, so prolific that more always seem ready to throw themselves under the altar of war."
Ă˘â‚¬â€ť From the Prophet of Clarity's Notes on the History of the Covenant, referring to the Unggoy
Believed to be rather unintelligent by the San'Shyuum, Unggoy were generally forced to serve in laboring positions or deployed into battle as cannon fodder. During engagements, they were often deployed as the first wave of attack in ground campaigns or Unggoy were deployed in high numbers to undertake various types of operations. Most Unggoy that served aboard Covenant warships were tasked with monitoring human communications, leading to most members of the species having a better grasp on English than other species. The lower districts of High Charity housed a massive Unggoy population; the Unggoy-inhabited portion of the districts was methane-rich so the Unggoy did not require methane tanks to breathe.
The Unggoy's lowly position within the Covenant was based on racial bias rather than the species' inherent abilities. The Unggoy were not represented on the Covenant High Council but were instead vetted by the Ministry of Concert, albeit poorly. The Unggoy were mistreated by nearly every client species of the Covenant, except the Huragok. They were often treated as second-class citizens within Covenant society. The Unggoy had a particularly tense relationship with the Kig-Yar, a race only ranked slightly higher in the Covenant hierarchy. Despite both species holding similar standings, the Kig-Yar were granted more independence and often favored over the Unggoy by other individuals in the Covenant. Unggoy were expected to revere Sangheili as the near-divine protectors of the San'Shyuum, however many Unggoy despised the Sangheili for mistreating their race. While they were essentially a slave race, the Unggoy have managed to largely retain their cultural identities, and have rebelled in the past more than once. Before the Unggoy Rebellion of 2462, Unggoy were not given the right to use weapons in battle. When the rebellion proved to the Sangheili that Unggoy could be determined and competent fighters, they were given better training and weaponry, and integrated into formerly Sangheili-only units. Within the Unggoy community there is a general strong hatred of the other Covenant species, due to the fear they face. This causes many Unggoy to believe that someday a dynamic grunt will lead them to freedom on a methane-rich paradise world.
Unggoy generally followed a few short, simple guidelines given to them by the Sangheili; for example, "When in doubt, shoot" or "Stay out of the way, live another day". Despite being held in low regard by the Covenant, many Unggoy were strong followers of the Covenant religion and the Great Journey. Their Deacons would often hold sermons onboard ships to boost the morale and teach the Unggoy onboard about the Covenant. For instance, a Deacon named Dadab gave sermons and taught the Unggoy on board a Jiralhanae cruiser about the Covenant and its religion. The Jiralhanae allowed Dadab these teachings because they believed that it would help the Unggoy become more competent and helpful.
Their native language is composed of dog-like barks, squeaks, and grunts. Though largely unintelligible to most humans, translation software is able to decipher the meanings of these. The word "Unggoy" itself is not a word from their vocabulary, rather, it is the Sangheili name for their species. Unggoy are also fully capable of speaking a variety of human languages, a fact in which they take great pride.
Unggoy often have names which reflect a language of very simple phonics. Common names, such as Yayap and Dadab, begin with a reduplicated consonant and consist of two syllables. Other names typically consist of a single syllable with clusters of consonants, such as "Flim". Some exceptions have occurred of which a name has more consonants than is usual while following the first method of naming, as in Kwassass. Often, their names are palindromes, such as Zawaz.
The Sangheili did not permit the Unggoy to retain family names during their service in the Covenant. Instead, they formally identified themselves by the names and birthplaces of famous patriarchs within their family. This patriarch could be the Unggoy's uncle, grandfather, or even a mythical paterfamilias that was revered by their ancestors. An example of this identification method would be "Yayap, son of Pum. Of Balaho's blasted scablands." Following the end of the Human-Covenant war, individual Unggoy serving under the Swords of Sanghelios and Jul 'Mdama's Covenant faction have begun to use family names to identify themselves, such as Dimkee Hotay.
Homeworld and colonies
The Unggoy homeworld of Balaho is a temperate, swampy planet with a methane atmosphere and naturally occurring pillars of fire. The planet is orbited by two natural satellites: Buwan and Padpad. A cold planet, temperatures on Balaho range from -33 Ă‚Â°C to 5 Ă‚Â°C (-27 Ă‚Â°F to 41 Ă‚Â°F). The cold season of their planet makes them highly covet any source of warmth and light they can find, mainly due to the "blue death". The planet is still in process of recovery from a global ecological collapse before the activation of the Halo Array due to over-industrialization caused by the Unggoy at the time.
Since their natural environment has a methane atmosphere, Unggoy require methane tanks and breathing apparatus with them whenever they travel into areas without high levels of methane in the air. Since all the other races of the Covenant (as well as humanity) breathe oxygen, the Unggoy find themselves wearing breathing masks more often than not. They sometimes inhabit large environment domes that have airlocks and methane filters for them to breathe while not in armor, while those in military service often restock their methane reserves at battlefield recharge stations. Unggoy have high-pitched and squeaky voices, possibly due to the different resonating properties of methane gas.
Unggoy populations also inhabit colonies of the former Covenant; a number of such worlds have fallen under the control of the Banished. On Balaho, the harsh environment of the planet typically weeds out psychologically aberrant individuals. On more hospitable worlds, however, Unggoy populations are able to grow without this natural culling process. The Banished take advantage of this, drawing psychotic and fanatical Unggoy specimens from these colonies to serve in their suicide squads.
-Unggoy Minor: Unggoy Minors are the lowest ranking Unggoy. They wear orange colored armor and are often the least dangerous, most cowardly, and inaccurate marksmen of all the Unggoy. When their commanding officer is killed, they routinely break formation and flee; however, they will regroup and start firing at their target again. As is fitting for Jiralhanae behavior, Unggoy under the command of the Jiralhanae are substantially more aggressive.
-Unggoy Storm: Storm Grunts are specialized shock troops.
-Unggoy Major: Majors are more experienced than Unggoy Minors, and wear crimson colored armor. They command several Unggoy Minors and are slightly more skilled in combat and courageous, though this difference is not always substantial.
-Unggoy Heavy: Heavies are specialized Unggoy that wear green colored armor and are often deployed for defensive actions. Their primary purposes are to deploy plasma cannons and man them, although they are occasionally seen wielding fuel rod guns, plasma rifles, and even Spikers.
-Special Operations Unggoy: These Unggoy are experienced and specially-chosen, usually commanded by the special operations Sangheili, and are given distinctive jet-black armor. They are part of the Covenant Special Operations division of the Special Warfare Group. Just like the special operations Sangheili, they are able to use active camouflage. They are extremely skilled in warfare compared to their lower-ranked counterparts, and won't panic too often in combat situations, if they do at all. They usually can be seen wielding fuel rod guns, and throw plasma grenades with great accuracy. Though some of them chose to side with the Sangheili during the Great Schism many remained within the Jiralhanae-led units loyal to the Prophets, wearing white armor similar to the Unggoy Ultra. Though Special Operation Unggoy Minors and Majors have no armor distinction (both wearing a jet-black or dark purple Combat Harness) Special Operation Unggoy Ultras are distinguished from their Unggoy Ultra counterparts by how their combat harnesses feature the 2-pronged methane tank, while other Unggoy Ultras feature the standard white point-tank version.
-Unggoy Rangers: A specialized group of Unggoy fully trained and armored for extra-vehicular activity.
-Unggoy Ultra: These Unggoy serve as field commanders to their comrades, and wear distinctive white-lilac armor (reminiscent of the Sangheili Ultras). While they appear to have some authority over lesser-ranked Unggoy, they have no control whatsoever over the other Covenant races. They are stronger opponents than their subordinates, and are more accurate with firearms, throw plasma grenades often, and wear heavier armor and a helmet that is required to be shot off first before an enemy can headshot them.
-Unggoy Imperial: The Unggoy Imperial rank is a rank that is mostly comprised of veteran Unggoy that served in the Human-Covenant war. They often will lead groups of Unggoy Storms into battle, and are sometimes accompanied by Unggoy Heavies.
Other Titles And Roles
Deaconship is the only position open to the Unggoy in the Ministry of Tranquility. Unlike many other roles available to the Unggoy, this rank does not often involve combat or hard manual labor, though they have been known to carry around plasma pistols and Needlers.
Some Unggoy are also known to serve as merchants and are well-respected in the Covenant hierarchy. During the ascension ceremony of the Covenant's last triumvirate of Hierarchs, a Yanme'e queen, Kig-Yar Shipmasters, and Unggoy traders were present. It was also said that their harnesses were adorned with large jewels.
While regular Unggoy infantry occasionally choose to employ suicide attacks out of desperation, the Covenant were also known to purposefully assign select fanatical Unggoy squads to use such attacks as their primary offensive tactic against the enemy. The Banished later adopted similar tactics.
The Heretic Unggoy followed their Sangheili organizers in a rebellion against the Covenant's Prophets. They started as members of an artifact retrieval group led by the Sangheili Sesa 'Refumee.
Jockeys operate Unggoy-manufactured Goblin battlesuits or other vehicles, such as Type-32 Ghosts or Type-54 Ghosts.
Post-war, many Unggoy were forced into or joined the Banished mercenary faction. During the Installation 07 conflict, Unggoy Conscripts, Unggoy Assaults, and Unggoy Mules were utilized. Similar to their roles in the Covenant and its remnants, they were used as simple foot soldiers and cannon fodder.
Sergeant Major Duvall: "Romeo Company, be advised: we have reports of Covenant suicide squads."
Army trooper: "You gotta be kidding me..."
Ă˘â‚¬â€ť UNSC personnel encountering suicide Unggoy during the Fall of Reach.
Unggoy infantry sometimes use suicide tactics as their mode of attack, either out of their own volition or due to specific orders to carry out such attacks; units consisting of the latter are commonly known as suicide Grunts or simply suicide squads.
Overall, the Unggoy in gameplay are very weak in combat; often fleeing when their leader has been killed. However, in larger numbers, they can be more of a threat, especially in higher difficulties. If their leader is killed, Unggoy may sometimes activate two plasma grenades and rush to the player in an attempt to suicide-bomb them.
In Halo Wars, the Unggoy serves as the main infantry unit, serving as the Covenant equivalent to the Marine. They start with a plasma pistol and three in each squad, but they can be upgraded to wield needlers.
A melee attack can kill a Grunt instantly, so when you face no more than 5 of them, don't waste your ammo and just punch them. For large groups use the Gravity Hammer, unless the catch skull is on meaning you have to stay outside their range, as even in close-range the Grunts will not hesitate to spam-grenades at the enemy.
-In Tagalog and Filipino, Unggoy means "monkey".
-In real life, "Grunt" is a slang military term for infantrymen.
-The Unggoy were ranked #5 in Game Informer's "The Top 10 Most Pathetic Enemies" list.
-In Halo: Reach, Unggoy voices were changed. Instead of their original high-pitched and squeaky voices, they sound more deep and mechanical, possibly because of their breathing apparatus. However, they are still being voiced by Joseph Staten.
-In Halo: Reach, if an Unggoy's methane tank is shot or meleed it may fall off, causing the gas to launch said Unggoy into the air and eventually explode. Many players consider this a great hazard, especially on higher difficulties.
-The redesigned Unggoy that appear in Halo 4 bear a great deal of resemblance to the wretches from the Gears of War series.
-The Grunt appeared in Konami's Super Bomberman R as one of the three exclusive characters in the Xbox One version. He is known as Grunt Bomber, a specie of the Covenant from Planet Halo. He is a speed typed bomber and his special ability is the Plasma Pistol.
-In Halo 5: Guardians Unggoy can be seen carrying Type-57 Carbines in the first cutscene of Mission 12 Battle of Sunaion.