PDA

View Full Version : Fun Club 7: Orange Box - Half-Life 2 (general talk)


Parish
10-09-2007, 11:44 PM
Orange Box
Valve/EA | Various forms of FPS | Xbox 360/PC | October 10, 2007

Let's talking about Half-Life 2 and its episodes! Save the story details (especially as regards Episode 2) for the story thread, though.

reibeatall
10-10-2007, 07:59 AM
So the only part of Half Life 2 I've played was a little bit on the Xbox version and a little bit of Episode 1. How long does it take to beat?

Jakanden
10-10-2007, 08:05 AM
I will probably be picking this up this weekend. I have no desire for TF2 (one of the few, I know), but I am interested in HL2 and Portal.

Curious question, does the 360 version have everything on one DVD?

Adrenaline
10-10-2007, 03:52 PM
So the only part of Half Life 2 I've played was a little bit on the Xbox version and a little bit of Episode 1. How long does it take to beat?

I think HL2 is around 15 hours, Ep. 1 about 5.

How many people are using the Orange Box as an opportunity to finally play HL2 and/or Ep. 1? How many can jump straight to Ep. 2? And how many don't care and just want Portal/TF2?

reibeatall
10-10-2007, 07:51 PM
Curious question, does the 360 version have everything on one DVD?

Yep, one disc.

Paul le Fou
10-10-2007, 09:20 PM
I think HL2 is around 15 hours, Ep. 1 about 5.

How many people are using the Orange Box as an opportunity to finally play HL2 and/or Ep. 1? How many can jump straight to Ep. 2? And how many don't care and just want Portal/TF2?

I never played HL2, so getting the Orange Box was definitely my chance. I'm at Ravenholm now, but it's getting sort of annoying (Ravenholm, that is). I've never been much for horror games, but there's an undeniable joy in the gravity gun.

Schmidt
10-10-2007, 09:43 PM
Everyone's got something to say about Ravenholm, and the majority of it isn't good. Almost across the board, it's either your favorite or least favorite part of the game.

Adrenaline
10-11-2007, 06:17 AM
Ravenholm is the bee's knees.

Maggie
10-11-2007, 06:58 AM
Ravenholm and the end are pretty much the only parts I enjoyed. I think it's because I had come to HL2 so long after everyone else had played it and forgotten about it, so I had been hearing a lot of hype for a long time.

Sort of like Halo 3, but we all experienced that. You could be living in a cave somewhere and one night, as you take your torch deeper inside to find a good place to pee, you'd come across a drawing of Master Chief holding up a can of Mountain Dew.

Mr. Sensible
10-12-2007, 02:29 AM
Even if you're not having the best time evar playing through original HL2, do try to stick with it through Episode 1, at least. They basically distilled the original game into a concentrated syrup of pure shootery goodness. If nothing else, Episode 1 finally gives you an exceedingly competent NPC ally who is a much better shot than any of the other tag-alongs you team up with. Said ally also doesn't die easily (I'm not certain, but they may simply be unkillable), nor do they just abandon you at certain points for no goddamn reason like the rest of the resistance. Pussies.

Adrenaline
10-12-2007, 09:31 AM
Episode Two's even better. Said NPC isn't there for a while, but another one is.

pence
10-13-2007, 08:15 PM
Seems that HL2 isn't going to be judged as 'fun club approved' from the "I don't get it" posts in the story thread. I guess Half-Life's following is actually pretty insular? I always figured that the ennui from console gamers when it got released on XBox was because of a bad port.

The pacing of the game seems so incredible to me. For example the helicopter chase on the fanboat is punctuated by all kinds of little areas you have to explore to continue, and when you finally get to take the helicopter down at the end of the chapter it's extremely satisfying. The downtime between the combat has some of the most memorable scenes in the game (Dr. Kleiner's pet headcrab Lamarr; Playing catch with Dog; Barney giving you your faithful crowbar)

So yeah, I'm one of those guys that had a nerdgasm over Half-Life 2. But Half-Life was absolutely mind-blowing to me in 1998, too. I remember spending an hour at the beginning of the game just messing with the soda machines and microwaves.

Adrenaline
10-13-2007, 09:58 PM
Those people are weird. Half-Life was great, and Half-Life 2 along with the episodes are the best first person shooters ever IMO, and it's not even close.

Schmidt
10-13-2007, 10:01 PM
Ugh, man, I'm on my way through HL2 still (never played Ep1 or 2 so I figured I should finish that HL2 run I started a couple months back so it's all fresh, though I've finished HL2 before), and it's actually worse than I remember. I remember being bummed out with Ravenholm, but I forgot just how stupidly long this game is. I've just did that stupidly frustrating part in Anti-citizen-whatever where I have to protect Alyx in the town square while she exposes a core for me to shoot a doo-dad so we can continue, and I'm so completely bored with it I can't believe it.

Everything in this game starts out awesome, and then overstays its welcome. At this stage in the game I do not need more corridors with headcrabs, or manhacks, or combine troops.

Overall this second play through is just driving home how padded and poorly paced this game is. It blows my mind that people complain about Halo 3 being too short, or any of the Halos being too repetitive, when they like Half-life 2.

Schmidt
10-13-2007, 10:03 PM
To clarify: Half Life 2 is great. But it's not as great as people say it is, or even as great as I personally remembered it. If anything, it's building my anticipation for the relatively shorter Eps 1 and 2.

Maggie
10-13-2007, 10:14 PM
I never got to play Episode 1 or 2, so that might be part of it. I just wasn't impressed with 2. The stuff with Dr. Breen was neat, but other than Ravenholm and the final level, everything was so ugly and unininteresting and I *loathed* the vehicle areas.

I guess it just wasn't my type of game and I came into it long after everyone else had been through it (I had to wait for the Xbox version, since my computer couldn't run it).

EDIT: I'm always so negative in the Fun Club, man. What the heck?

Adrenaline
10-13-2007, 10:22 PM
Overall this second play through is just driving home how padded and poorly paced this game is. It blows my mind that people complain about Halo 3 being too short, or any of the Halos being too repetitive, when they like Half-life 2.

The difference is the level design isn't the same room template repeated over and over and over.

reibeatall
10-13-2007, 10:38 PM
The difference is the level design isn't the same room template repeated over and over and over.

In all honesty, only Halo 1 really fell for this. That being said, I'd take those familiar corridors over some of the things in HL2 any day. I'm still playing this game, but it's pretty boring.

The thing is, I really liked Half Life 1. So this isn't some "Halo >>> Half life " post. I just don't feel any attachment to anything I'm doing. Ravenholm is a neat place, but what the hell does it have to do with anything? That's the most out of place little town I've ever seen. I go from some place I would imagine out of Equilibrium into a dried up canal, into some river on an airboat, into a "research" facility, and now I'm in Silent Hill with headcrabs?

Adrenaline
10-13-2007, 10:53 PM
Yeah, how is that not awesome?

pence
10-13-2007, 10:56 PM
everything was so ugly and unininteresting

This seems to be a very polarizing game; I thought the Soviet-style architecture was very appealing. The little vista when you exit the train station into the plaza at the beginning of the game encapsulates City 17 perfectly, with the Citadel way off in the distance towering over everything and striders patrolling the streets in the background.

It blows my mind that people complain about Halo 3 being too short, or any of the Halos being too repetitive, when they like Half-life 2.

I think the reason people complain about repetitive environments in Halo and not in Half-Life is that Halo is a very pure shooter. Each room, corridor and courtyard is there to provide an interesting firefight. In Half-Life, you often go from an intense gun battle, to a scripted event, to a physics puzzle in a matter of minutes. So, for example, even though the rooms in Nova Prospekt look very similar, the gameplay varies greatly as you advance through the level.

And, as Adreneline said, the rooms actually have some personality. I spent about half an hour in Dr. Kleiner's office poking around, messing with the little teleporter, and checking out the Black Mesa staff photograph. Depending on how much you care about environments outside of the shooting that goes on within, your mileage may vary.

Right now I'm working on Episode 2 and I can understand the repetitive environment argument; the mine area does have a very uniform look. They've even used the old Halo trick of putting you in an arena and forcing you to fight waves of enemies, albiet with some interesting twists (having to work together with two turrets and two NPCs, and placing a thumper in the middle of the arena as you're attacked by antlions and zombies).

I'm trying to be objective, but if I'm doing a bad job of hiding my raging boner, it's because Half-Life makes me very happy.

Torgo
10-13-2007, 10:58 PM
The thing is, I really liked Half Life 1. So this isn't some "Halo >>> Half life " post. I just don't feel any attachment to anything I'm doing. Ravenholm is a neat place, but what the hell does it have to do with anything? That's the most out of place little town I've ever seen. I go from some place I would imagine out of Equilibrium into a dried up canal, into some river on an airboat, into a "research" facility, and now I'm in Silent Hill with headcrabs?
To be fair though, that airboat sequence was awesome. Unfortunately I can't say the same for the stupid buggy-thing I'm (still) saddled with.

Schmidt
10-13-2007, 11:00 PM
The difference is the level design isn't the same room template repeated over and over and over.
Which should serve as the perfect example of how repetition is less about level geometry and more about gameplay. Because HL2 is really repetitive, even if I am walking through a slightly different sewer canal or abandoned apartment complex or whatever.

If anything, it's more of a problem in HL2 because there's very little physical backtracking. It makes it even more inexcusable that you're doing the same stupid thing over and over again, because it's not like there's any reason for it.

Adrenaline
10-13-2007, 11:03 PM
I never felt like I was doing the same thing over and over. I'm driving, then I'm solving a puzzle, then I'm fighting soldiers, then I'm driving again, then there's some plot advancement and downtime, a fight with primal monsters, a fight with giant robots... AUGHAGH.

Torgo
10-13-2007, 11:10 PM
I think what schmidt is saying is that contextually it's harder to justify. HL1 is little more then a fight for survival: You're in a huge research facility that is host to an alien invasion and a military cleanup crew, both bent on seeing you dead, and you're trying to escape. It makes sense that you're going from firefight to firefight.

HL2 on the other hand, doesn't have such a setting, opting instead to have you cruise around all over the place, yet you're still constantly either in a firefight with the Combine or blowing away headcrab errata.

Schmidt
10-13-2007, 11:14 PM
I never felt like I was doing the same thing over and over. I'm driving, then I'm solving a puzzle, then I'm fighting soldiers, then I'm driving again, then there's some plot advancement and downtime, a fight with primal monsters, a fight with giant robots... AUGHAGH.
The whole game isn't the problem. Just parts of it. Parts like Anticitizen One. Nova Prospekt. Within those parts, you're doing the same thing over and over again. You're setting up turrets for the third time in an hour, against the exact same enemies that attacked you last time you set up turrets. You're clearing your way through endless city blocks of weirdly connected hallways and apartments, shooting the same combine guards around the same corners with the same guns for way too long. You finally break through all that, and you're dumped back into some sewerish level to fight manhacks that could've been lifted wholesale from the first two hours of the game.

Things like the antlion assault as you're getting into Nova Prospekt are just right. Lots of the game is great. I even feel like the dune buggy part is just fine (I'm with everyone else on the air boat being too long). But the game really really drags at times, and it's not because there is no action, it's because it's boring and repetitive.

Schmidt
10-13-2007, 11:20 PM
It wasn't my intention to lock this into a comparison with Halo either, but since I brought it up, I think what I should've pointed out earlier was that you can drop me into a room with the same elites and brutes I was fighting at the begining of the game, but give them slightly different placement, and it's still a lot of fun to fight my way out. The same can't be said of HL2. The combine soldiers get really old. So I guess you could say I'm just less forgiving of the repetition in HL2 than in Halo, but I'd say with good reason. Maybe that's really my whole problem with HL2: all the filler combat between awesome set pieces is boring and tedious, so when it repeats or overstays its welcome, it's really noticable.

Paul le Fou
10-14-2007, 02:54 AM
Halo is combat evolved. Of course the combat is better!

Really though I think that's part of it. There's more care in Halo to refine the actual combat parts, the enemy AI and the varity of weapons and such

Half-life 2, so far, the combat has been "shoot the combine soldiers" or "shoot the zombies/headcrabs."

The one thing I don't really like about Half-life 2 is the "Puzzles." Most of them aren't really puzzles at all, they're just showcases for the physics engine and how zomg awesome and revolutionary it is. The ones in the hoverboat especially - Put some barrels under a cage so it lifts up because the barrels float! Or load a washing machine into an elevator so it sinks because washing machines are heavy! Guys this is awesome! Dropping cars on zombies in ravenholm, or setting those rotors spinning and watching zombies walk into them. None of it really feels organic or submersive to me, it just comes off as an extended tech demo wank for the source engine.

And seriously, I've had enough of the goddamn zombies. They're the same damn thing over and over - walk straight at you while you shoot them in the head or use the gravity gun to fling shit at them. Headcrabs, runner zombies, zombies that throw headcrabs... it never ends.

dangerhelvetica
10-14-2007, 07:27 AM
A lot of complaints you all have about the gameplay get rectified with the episodes (particularly episode 2). So, it's worth soldiering on. I didn't enjoy Half-Life 2 nearly as much as the first, but I'm getting around to that level of enjoyment now that the story is genuinely picking up.

Also, it helps to some degree if you've played the first game. There are a lot of little connections that make things interesting. It's kind of necessary to have some investment in the plot.

shivam
10-14-2007, 11:56 AM
hey guys, do you need to remember half life 1's story to enjoy 2? I never had a computer good enough for half life 2, and i played the original when it first came out so i don't remember a damn thing about it (and i avoided it in the years since as i loathe counterstrike). that said, i'm planning on picking up orange box just to check it out...unless someone wouldnt mind sharing their superfluous steam code for HL2 with me?

ringworm
10-14-2007, 12:02 PM
hey guys, do you need to remember half life 1's story to enjoy 2?
I absolutely love Half-Life 2 and the episodes (most of this thread has been full of bad opinions) and I am embarrassed to admit I've never even played the original Half-Life.

Adrenaline
10-14-2007, 01:45 PM
hey guys, do you need to remember half life 1's story to enjoy 2? I never had a computer good enough for half life 2, and i played the original when it first came out so i don't remember a damn thing about it (and i avoided it in the years since as i loathe counterstrike). that said, i'm planning on picking up orange box just to check it out...unless someone wouldnt mind sharing their superfluous steam code for HL2 with me?

There's a few inside jokes that only make sense if you remember the first, but the story itself is largely independent of the original. All you really need to know is you caused the original portal to open back in Black Mesa.

Mr. Sensible
10-14-2007, 01:59 PM
hey guys, do you need to remember half life 1's story to enjoy 2?

All you really need to know is Gordon's just this guy, alright? He got a cool suit, some shit went down at the lab, and after shooting a lot of military guys and aliens in the face, he shuts down the first invasion and gets "hired" by a creepy government suit with a speech problem, only to be stuck in cold storage for about ten or twenty years.

I cannot wait for this (http://www.blackmesasource.com/about.html) to be finished. I'll pay good money! And it'll give everyone who missed the first game a good reason to check it out.

Edit: Beat me to it. And dammit, all Gordon did was push that stupid trolley in! It's hardly fair to lay it all on him, yet everyone at Black Mesa's all like "you did it you stupid bastard! What were you thinking, following orders like that?!"

Paul le Fou
10-14-2007, 02:21 PM
What's the difference between Black Mesa and Half-Life: Source besides official/third party? Aren't they both Source remakes of the original Half-life?

Mr. Sensible
10-14-2007, 02:32 PM
Half-Life: Source is a Source remake of the original HL, but it uses the exact same models, textures, etc. that were used in the original. The only noticable differences seem to be the engine physics and water (perhaps also particle) effects. Obviously, this did not satisfy the slavering masses.

Black Mesa promises to be a complete remake, featuring redesigned maps, models, and even new voice work. In other words, it should look and sound as good as HL2.

Again, I am eagerly anticipating its completion.

Merus
10-14-2007, 08:02 PM
I am not really feeling the pacing issues the rest of you guys are having, although I'm just back up to Ravenholm now after abandoning the game on hard. I set it back down to normal, and I'm having a blast going as quickly as I can. It's probably important to remember that at the time the physics was a big selling point of HL2 so of course they're going to show it off. It is like mocking Super Mario Bros. for only using two buttons and a D-pad.

Edit: I'm either half-way, or more likely a third of the way through Ravenholm, and I have eight words that sum up my feelings of the level:

Fuck poison headcrabs, fuck poison zombies, fuck Ravenholm. Am not fond of the poison headcrabs, even though I realise that they're not capable of killing me on their own.

Sarcasmorator
10-16-2007, 09:09 PM
So is it just me, or is that Adam Baldwin as one of the resistance members in Episode 2?

pence
10-16-2007, 10:21 PM
Fuck poison headcrabs

In episode one, Alyx says something like, "Ugh, I hate those things!"

I laughed at that.

ohGr
10-17-2007, 10:52 AM
So is it just me, or is that Adam Baldwin as one of the resistance members in Episode 2?
It's not just you. He does Griggs or Sheckley, i believe, and miscellaneous resistance members.

Sarcasmorator
10-17-2007, 02:10 PM
OK, I thought so. Jayne's in lots of high-profile FPS's these days, it seems.

Maggie
10-17-2007, 02:44 PM
Edit: Beat me to it. And dammit, all Gordon did was push that stupid trolley in! It's hardly fair to lay it all on him, yet everyone at Black Mesa's all like "you did it you stupid bastard! What were you thinking, following orders like that?!"


Then again, everyone's always lavishing praise on him, too. It gets really old.

Actually, on this most recent playthrough, I've just pretended that any time someone says something nice about "THE Gordon Freeman(!?)," they're just being really patronizing.

It's added all kinds of layers to the experience.

Adrenaline
10-17-2007, 02:56 PM
Speaking of Mr. Baldwin, has anyone seen Chuck? It's not an amazing show but I enjoy it a lot, and he's still kicking ass in it.

Schmidt
10-19-2007, 01:28 AM
I finished my run through HL2 and I'm working through Episode 1 now. Anticitizen One really did suck, but things picked up in Follow Freeman and it was pretty much non-stop awesome to the end (I actually liked the bit heading into the building with the suppressor field on the roof, and back out to fight the striders, more than I remembered).

So far, Episode 1 maintains the awesome. I don't really know how far I am; I've just fought the first big bull antlion that shows up in Ep1. I avoid most specific discussion of Ep1 since I hadn't played it before, but I've heard vague things like "decent, but the low point of Half-Life" and complaints about sections in the darkness.

I'm afraid to jinx my optimism by saying anything, but if the big portion I've already been through involving darkness was what they were complaining about, they're crazy, because I liked that part. That's how you slip some survival-zombie-horror into HL2 effectively, not that wacky Ravenholm.

But it could still all go horrible at any moment I suppose, so don't quote me on Episode 1 being great yet. Just so far, so good.

poetfox
10-19-2007, 06:45 AM
So I'm playing episode 2, near the end (at the White Forest Inn) and I'm trying to figure out where to go. Long story short I end up back-tracking quite a ways, even through a loading screen. And I realize I'm angry at Alyx for not telling me I was going the wrong way. I just think it says something about the game that I was trusting her to tell me little things like that that I needed to know. How well Alyx acts in the game or something. I don't know specifically what I'm getting at, but it seemed significant to me, so I thought I'd mention it.

Adrenaline
10-19-2007, 08:41 AM
I don't know how you could get lost in that area.

poetfox
10-19-2007, 09:28 AM
I thought I was supposed to abandon the car, so I ran. Alyx was all like "We have to get away from here now!" so to me, that says "There's no electricity shutting off to do, get moving!" so I got moving, but the only way to move was down the hill and backwards.

ringworm
10-19-2007, 09:39 AM
Wow. It takes some serious skill to get lost in a Valve game.

Guy
10-20-2007, 01:17 PM
In episode one, Alyx says something like, "Ugh, I hate those things!"

I laughed at that.

So did I. It almost felt like Alyx was speaking directly to me.

Stiv
10-20-2007, 03:18 PM
Am I the only person who hates Episode One? The pacing of it was just too weird for me and it was an entirely "been there, done that" kind of experience with very few of the WHAT THE FUCK/HOLY SHIT episodes that are what make Half-Life so great.

Episode 2 is great so far, though. Valve even made up for the inexcusable nova prospekt turrent sequence in HL2 by finding a way to make it a little more fun.

Schmidt
10-20-2007, 03:29 PM
I wrapped up Ep1 and was surprised to find I loved it from start to finish. I've heard plenty of people complain about it, so I was prepared for the worst.

Adrenaline
10-20-2007, 06:46 PM
Am I the only person who hates Episode One?

Yeah

Merus
10-21-2007, 09:07 AM
I'm still working my way through HL2 the original, and I've just gotten past the Bridge at the end of Highway 17. I expect that the Bridge will probably be remembered, especially as Valve play their old trick of putting something like a bridge a little ways away from your last checkpoint, and giving it an encounter, so you think that, oh, that was the bridge, excellent. And then you go through two more maps along the coast and reach the actual Bridge.

With poison zombies guarding it. Of course, now I have an RPG and I had unlimited ammo for it at the time - but funnily enough, a direct hit from an RPG is only enough to kill the zombie and a couple of its headcrabs. I had to go down there and finish the rest off. Fuck poison zombies.

When I last left the game, I was in Ravenholm dealing with poison headcrabs. I ended up realising that so long as I took out the fast zombies first, I could take my time with the headcrabs, and the next section over was the church, so I was actually pretty far towards the end of Ravenholm. And gooooood riddance.

Fast zombies are not very smart, and have not worked out the concept of 'height advantage'. Next time they probably should avoid climbing up a rattly drainpipe with a Ph.D. professor with a shotgun looking down at them.

I had some trouble getting into the mines - there's a large setpiece where for some unknown reason there's steel mesh and rusty sawblades and explosive barrels strewn throughout a graveyard, and so naturally I was attacked by zombies. Crazy old Father Grigori let me into the mines by opening up a gate that slams shut behind me, then did his farewell speech while zombies swarmed him and started whacking into him. And then he caught fire. I would have said he didn't make it, but he hadn't finished his farewell speech at the time so he was clearly still alive or recorded his final words on a tap recorded, which I would totally not put past him. He did explode at the end, which is probably telling, but then he was still cackling as the zombies burned around him.

The mines were much shorter than I was expecting - basically two encounters. The first one is a big pit full of headcrabs and platforms running above it, where I discovered that there were three types of headcrabs, not two, which cleared things up a bit, and taught me that I didn't have to worry so much about the fast zombies because the thing on their head is not, in fact, a poison headcrab. I was lucky that I'd planned ahead and tossed the barrel at the top of the mineshaft that leads into the encounter down to the bottom, so I used it to clear all but two of the headcrabs, then dropped down, grabbed the barrel, and waited for the two fast headcrabs I had left. Once I'd tidied up, an endless stream of headcrabs started coming out of nowhere to 'encourage' me to move on.

The other encounter in the mines (other than some fun times with one of those barnacle things, which if you let it grab you gave you access to some ammo, which was a nice way of teaching me that I shouldn't get so hung up over them - still scarred from getting caught by them in the first level of Half-Life 1) was great fun, lots of zombies and a rotating blade on a minecart that kept going up and back and up and back. So I just sort of didn't worry about shooting there, and cackled softly every time the minecart went up and sent more victims flying.

Protip: when sniping, ensure Gordon Freeman has not tossed a grenade at your feet.

I have noticed that the artifical intelligence seems much less intelligent in this game - they will come through a doorway one at a time, as I stand there and wait for them. I'm sure Half-Life's AI was the same, but at least in that game there weren't as many obvious chokepoints as there are in this one.

As I mentioned earlier, I quite like the driving segments, even though the dune buggy is nowhere near as fun - or as stable - as the jetski. And the antlions are also lame (looking forward to the control device I hear you get for them). And most of the fighting between the Lighthouse and Little Odessa is optional, which is a surprise change although now that I know I just barrel past most of the side houses. It's funny that iD's big new innovation for their ID5 engine is going to be driving. It's been a while since iD were, well, relevant, and hyping up features that a five-year-old competing product already had is not really what you'd expect from a market leader. It's like Unreal Engine 3 announcing it has ragdoll physics or something.

I like the RPG. I like how the gunship battles play out - you've got to try and find cover, but at the same time you have to keep an eye on where you're shooting and guide the rocket to its target, so you're trying to do two movements at once and they tend to interfere with one another. By the gunship battle on the Bridge, I was a dab hand at guiding missiles when I couldn't see the gunship.

I also like the crossbow. I'm a sniper whore.

Ravenholm seems like a heck of an anomaly in the game - it's clear that you're supposed to be using the gravity gun for most of it, from the lack of ammo, but as soon as I left Ravenholm they started handing out ammo and health like candy again, and Ravenholm doesn't do a very good job of forcing you to stick with the gravity gun - the poison zombies, in particular, would best be introduced with a nice big car hovering over them.

SlimJimm
10-21-2007, 02:56 PM
You said you hate antlions now, but yes with the pheromones you will love them. The assult on Nova Prospekt with the antlions was one of my favorite parts in the game.

Maggie
10-21-2007, 04:26 PM
I didn't hate Episode 1. I didn't.. really like it, either. It was just kind of a dull blur in between HL2 and Episode 2. Nothing special.

SlimJimm
10-21-2007, 04:32 PM
I just finished Episode 1 yesterday, and only just started Episode 2.

Episode 1 felt like the car-chase part between Ravenholm and Nova Prospekt from HL2. I dont want to call it "filler" but the only really fun part was the part where Alyx and Gordon go through the hospital. Getting civilians to the trains was ok, but would have been cooler if it maybe had more of a twist than having the one train stuck in the middle of the station.

But I must say I did like having an invincible friend covering my back the whole way through. Alyx rules.

Adrenaline
10-21-2007, 04:45 PM
Alyx actually can die, it's just very difficult.

Schmidt
10-21-2007, 05:04 PM
The only time I've ever had her die was at the end of Anticitizen One when you have to protect her while she drops the shield around the bouncy thing you shoot with the gravgun. So I wasn't sure if she was ever vulnerable at other times, or only in the scripted "Protect Her!" sequences. Can she really die in just normal combat?

Sarcasmorator
10-21-2007, 06:28 PM
Apparently she just has an extremely high health regeneration rate, so if she takes too much damage in one shot she can die.

ohGr
10-21-2007, 07:29 PM
She died once on me in normal combat. Shortly after joining me in Nova Prospekt she ran ahead of me up a small stairwell and ended up in the middle of two spawn points for shotgun-toting Combine soldiers; three or four point-blank shotgun blasts to the face in the space of about a second ended her real quick.

Guy
10-22-2007, 07:35 PM
Hey, has anyone experienced a problem with Episode 1 violently crashing with looping sounds, leaving only an error message stating a problem with hl2.exe? I'm sure it isn't because I have the settings too high, the framerate up until it crashes is fairly golden. It happens at completely random moments.

Sarcasmorator
10-22-2007, 07:58 PM
I don't have trouble in-game, but I've noticed Steam crashes with that error if I press anything by mistake while any game is first loading up.

Paul le Fou
10-22-2007, 08:10 PM
I get that in TF2 in the middle of the game now and then. My HL2 never crashes because I can't actually load any of them. I get an "Engine Error" and it crashes as soon as it hits the menu.

Stiv
10-23-2007, 01:31 AM
Episode 2 has restored my faith in Half-Life as a viable series. I mean, it even made the driving parts pretty fun by keeping them (a) relatively short and (b) giving you plenty of opportunity to jump out of the car and do shit. I'm eager to see what Episode 3 does.

Merus
10-23-2007, 05:54 PM
Hey, has anyone experienced a problem with Episode 1 violently crashing with looping sounds, leaving only an error message stating a problem with hl2.exe? I'm sure it isn't because I have the settings too high, the framerate up until it crashes is fairly golden. It happens at completely random moments.
I'm starting to have this happen to me during Sandtraps.

The extended antlion keep-off-the-boiling-lava sequence keeps reminding me of this: http://www.hlcomic.com/index.php?date=2006-04-05

One thing I've noticed, and appreciate, is how much Half-Life 2 mixes up its gameplay especially compared to its predecessor. The only thing that's been a straight run-and-gun like the previous game has been Route Kanal - since then there's been a jetski sequence punctuated by mandatory stops for shooting, a boss fight against a helicopter, a survival horror sequence, a section taking out headcrabs and zombies using tools in the area, avoiding sniper shots, a driving sequence with optional and mandatory stops, missile-guided gun battles and a keep-off-the-sand sequence. There's a lot of variety here, and I'm kind of interested to see what else they throw at me in the second half of the game.

Schmidt
10-23-2007, 06:07 PM
All of those things again. See also: Episode 1, Episode 2.

It's not overall any worse for repeating these things (and there are still some surprises I don't want to give away), but you've about reached the bottom of HL's bag of tricks.

Jeanie
10-23-2007, 06:23 PM
Nova Prospekt is the part of HL2 where I lose interest in the game every time. I just can't muster the energy to get past it.

Merus
10-23-2007, 07:03 PM
All of those things again. See also: Episode 1, Episode 2.

It's not overall any worse for repeating these things (and there are still some surprises I don't want to give away), but you've about reached the bottom of HL's bag of tricks.
I don't mind, so long as I don't have to repeat the survival horror sequence again. I am about ready for some balls-up shooting with all my lovely new weapons, though.

Excalibrate
10-23-2007, 08:40 PM
I think the 360 version has some of the most creative achievements. I never found that old H.E.V. panel in Black Mesa East until I heard the blip of a few more gamerpoints being added to my gamercard. I did miss a few others, though, considering I have broken Dr. Kleiner's miniature teleportation device more than enough times on the PC and opted to avoid it.

Also, I'd hate to start another Half-Life 2 vs. Halo debate, but I can't help but recall the horrendous struggle trying to get to Cortana in Halo 3. The flood is a pain already, but then you wind up in the middle of an infestation. Sorry, but I think Halo has Ravenholm beat. Last I checked, fast zombies don't hug walls to shoot at you or evolve into something more dangerous when they are supposed to be dead.

Adrenaline
10-23-2007, 10:11 PM
I don't mind, so long as I don't have to repeat the survival horror sequence again. I am about ready for some balls-up shooting with all my lovely new weapons, though.

He's kinda lying. There's a lot of urban combat including an extended sequence with an interesting ally, and more missile stuff against a different kind of enemy.

Stiv
10-23-2007, 10:25 PM
Nova Prospekt is the part of HL2 where I lose interest in the game every time. I just can't muster the energy to get past it.

I'm not sure if I should say it's worth it. Nova Prospekt is brain-blisteringly frustrating but it's so close to the end of the game that it's kind of a shame to not finish it. You're missing out on the super gravity gun, but that can be remedied by playing the first part of Episode 1, so. In fact it seems like the entire first half hour (or hour, depending on how fast you play) is there to make up for all the things you missed if you stopped playing at Nova Prospekt.