About NEXT • SPIRIT OF FIRE ▶The Pillar of Autumn is possibly the most well-known warship in the Halo universe, making an appearance in the original Halo: Combat Evolved, as well as later in Halo: Reach and Halo Wars. By the end of the war it was an old ship, but was refitted for the purposes of the Office of Naval Intelligence and Operation: RED FLAG. Though the operation was ultimately a failure due to the extenuating circumstances of the loss of Reach and the end of the Human-Covenant War, the upgrades made to the ship are likely responsible for it surviving the Fall of Reach and making it onto the surface of Alpha Halo in one piece.
Though the Pillar of Autumn is best known for its actions during the Fall of Reach and the Battle of Installation 04, It was actually put into service fifteen years prior to first contact with the Covenant. Its structural design was considered over-engineered, with a series of cross-bracings and honeycomb structures that made the Halcyon-class light cruisers exceedingly strong, but also overly massive and costly to build. Due to this design deficiency, only a total of eleven Halcyon-class ships were ever built, and all were mothballed before being brought back into service as the UNSC tried to make up for the continual losses it faced against the Covenant. It was the same over-engineered design. however, that led to the Pillar of Autumn being chosen for a refit and selection for Operation: RED FLAG, a last-ditch effort by the UNSC to force a cease-fire with the Covenant by capturing a hierarch. Though Operation: RED FLAG was never implemented due to the Covenant invasion of Reach, the Autumn's refit was likely responsible for its survival during the Battle of Installation 04.
Featured NovelsDespite it's noteriety, the Pillar of Autumn only makes an appearance in two novels, both of which cover its final weeks prior to its destruction on Alpha Halo in September 2552.
Featured ComicsThe events depicted in The Fall of Reach comic mirror those in the book, showing the Pillar of Autumn leave Reach for Installation 04 following the Fall of Reach.
Featured FilmsThe Pillar of Autumn makes a brief appearance during Origins in Halo Legends.