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Bungie Studios, the company that created Halo, first designed the Marathon games for the Mac. Numerous references to the world of Marathon are in the Halo games though it's unclear if the two series exist in the same universe.
The original concept for Halo was a science fiction real-time strategy game in which players would manage multiple units.
A holdover from the Marathon series of games, rampancy refers to what happens to an artificially intelligent construct when things go seriously wrong.
The Forerunners built the massive Halo devices as a way to eliminate the parasitic Flood by wiping out the Flood's food source -- sentient lifeforms.
Installation 00 is the Ark, a structure built by the Forerunners that exists outside the Milky Way galaxy and therefore beyond the destructive reach of the Halo devices.
Master Chief goes by the name of John, with the Spartan tag of 117. Master Chief's A.I. companion, Cortana, reveals his name just once in the Halo series of games.
The action of Halo: Combat Evolved opens aboard the Pillar of Autumn as it comes under attack by Covenant forces.
Though he would receive the Mark VI generation of MJOLNIR armor in Halo 2, Master Chief starts off in Halo: Combat Evolved in a Mark V suit.
2401 Penitent Tangent is the monitor for Installation 05. It behaves in a way similar to 343 Guilty Spark, the monitor you first encounter in Halo: Combat Evolved.
As Halo 3 ends, Master Chief climbs into a sleep chamber inside an irreperably-damaged ship. His last words to Cortana are "Wake me when you need me."