Stuff we know about the commercial:
- Dialogue is (mostly) pinned down - read this post before posting about it (transcript plus cleaned audio)
- According to KP, the commercial takes place on Earth. It is not specified whether the ENTIRE commercial takes place on earth, or simply the bulk of it; it's possible the initial clip, with the children, takes place elsewhere.
- The children are probably either two generic kids on Earth, or John and an unidentified female companion somewhere else. (John was never on Earth as a child.) Among the camp that believes it's John and a companion, speculation about the companion includes Cassandra (from the Conversations with the Universe booklet), a Spartan we know, or a totally unrelated, non-spartan childhood friend.
- At about 20 seconds into the video (just before we see the Chief's hand), there are a pair of unidentified flying craft in the right half of the frame; smoke trails would suggest Banshees.
- There are two UNSC vehicles in the trailer - an overturned Warthog (visible before the Chief picks up his rifle), and an overturned Mongoose, visible after he's shielded.
- The shield itself seems to be more focused in the front - the plates are closer together. (Ciarán speculates that this is for gameplay reasons - one can only hope this shield will appear in the game. Frankie did not rule it out.)
- People seem to be pretty sure that the pistol the Chief holds is the M6D, from Halo 1. Whether it is or not, we have no evidence that a pistol in Halo 3 will behave like a pistol in Halo 1 - but Bungie reaction suggests that this is wishful thinking on the part of nostalgic fans.
- The large cloud bank visible at the end of the trailer is probably the Ark Storm we saw in the E3 Halo 3 trailer. Frankie stated that these two pieces take place at roughly the same time.
- The vehicles visible at the end of the trailers are new Wraiths. The characters below the Chief in his final jump are Brutes - the one in the center is the Alpha Brute (Tartarus' replacement), as evidenced by his hold on the Fist of Rukt. The brutes are wearing new armor.
There are many, many more tidbits worth noting in this trailer - but these are some of the things that have been hashed over a large number of times. Please - before posting new threads about these things, search for keywords in the current forum, and see if others have already posted what you're about to suggest. Thanks!