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Steam/Source: Games should be rated out of Valve, not out of 10

SudsSuds Registered User regular
edited November 2007 in Games and Technology
Steam Community was released as an open beta on August 6th, 2007. Not only can you chat to your Steam friends within Source games, you can chat to them on any game, whether you bought it on Steam or not (voice chat as well as text). Also included is the ability to add non-Steam games to your Steam list as a shortcut.

Screenshots of Steam Community in-game:
Spoiler:

Get your own custom signature
Looks like:
AlabasterSlim.png
Go to http://www.alabasterslim.com


The Guest Pass system has been released! How it works is people who buy a game can send their friends guest passes that would allow them to try out the game for "1-5 days", depending on the game. A closed beta has already started on Steam. It is currently only for Day of Defeat Source. More information can be found at this steam support page.

Also out January 8th are a new visual look (with 5 color schemes!), favorites for games as well as servers, and background updates.

Source Games!

Counter-Strike: Source
The most recent update was on November 1st, which implemented the final version of the new CS economy. The active economy of supply and demand will help even out the prices between items that are not bought very often, and ones that are bought almost every time. The prices have been reset many times due to outrageous prices, so many servers have disabled these prices. More information on the system can be found at http://www.steampowered.com/stats/csmarket/

Day of Defeat: Source
The most recent patch for DoD:S (Released June 28th) included two new maps (Jagd and Colmar) of a new detonation game-type; as well as cinematic effects for spectators and a slew of bug-fixes. Videos of the two new maps, done in WW2 propaganda style, can be downloaded from Steam's media area.

Half-Life 2
Half-Life 2 (HL2) is a science fiction first-person shooter computer game that is the sequel to Half-Life. It was developed by the Valve Software Corporation and was released on November 16, 2004, following a protracted five-year development cycle[1] during which the game's source code was leaked to the Internet.[2] The game garnered near unanimous positive reviews and received critical acclaim,[3][4][5] winning over 35 Game of the Year awards for 2004.[6] Originally available only for Windows-based personal computers, the game has since been ported onto the Xbox console, and is also due to be released for the PlayStation 3 and Xbox 360 in 2007.[7]

Taking place in and around the fictional City 17, Half-Life 2 follows the scientist Gordon Freeman. Dr. Freeman is thrust into a dystopian environment in which the aftermath of the Black Mesa Incident has come to bear fully upon human society. Freeman is forced to fight against increasingly unfavorable odds in order to survive. In his struggle, he is joined by various allies, including former Black Mesa colleagues, oppressed citizens of City 17, and the Vortigaunts.

Half-Life 2: Episode 1
Half-Life 2: Episode One is the first of a trilogy of episodes for the 2004 first-person shooter game, Half-Life 2.[1] The episode takes place immediately after the end of Half-Life 2, in and around the war-torn setting of City 17. Players are forced to deal with the effects of their actions during the main game. The episode is a stand-alone game; while a continuation of Half-Life 2, it does not require the original game to be installed or registered to a user's Steam account to play. It takes advantage of several major upgrades to the Source engine since the release of Half-Life 2, primarily its high dynamic range rendering capabilities and the upgraded facial animation system.

Valve views episodes One through Three as tantamount to a stand alone release, essentially Half-Life 3 divided into three episodes.[2] Episode One was released together with Half-Life Deathmatch: Source, a port of the original Half-Life's multiplayer, which doubles as Episode One's multiplayer component. The retail copies of Episode One also come with Half-Life 2 Deathmatch for those who have not previously purchased the latter title.

Half-Life 2: Episode 2
Half-Life 2: Episode Two will be the second installment in Valve Corporation's series of episodes for the computer game Half-Life 2.

Continuing with Valve's method of orienting each episode around a particular theme or set of technologies, Episode Two will focus on expansive environments, travel and nonlinear play, and, following the closing events of Episode One, it will see Gordon Freeman and the series' other major players moving away from City 17 to the surrounding wilderness.[3]

The first two episodes of Half-Life 2 have been developed concurrently by separate teams.[3] This episode was scheduled to be released in a bundled package: The Orange Box will ship for the PC, the Playstation 3, and the Xbox 360 and will contain Episode Two, Portal, and Team Fortress 2, in addition to Half-Life 2 and Episode One.[2] The package will be available at retail stores and through Steam (Valve's content delivery system) for direct download. A retail copy of Episode Two will reportedly not be available separately from the packages.[4] Originally a 'Black Box' retail package was to be released, containing only Episode Two, Portal and Team Fortress 2, but this was canceled by Valve in May 2007.

Episode Two has been repeatedly delayed but the retail version is set to be released on October 10, 2007 in North America for PC and Microsoft's Xbox 360. The version for Sony's Playstation 3 will be released "around two or three weeks later" due to being developed by the Electronic Arts UK studio, according to Valve marketing director Doug Lombardi.[5] For the rest of the world, the release date is October 12. The Steam version will be released October 10, 2007 at 12:01 PDT (20:01 UTC).

Portal
Portal is a new part of the Half-Life universe that centers around a company called Aperture Laboratories, and the testing of a portal generation machine known as the Aperture Science Handheld Portal Device. The player (who is currently rumored to be a new female character) is forced to utilize the device to solve a series of ever more difficult puzzles through the Aperture Science Enrichment center.

The game is based upon concepts from Narbacular Drop, a student project made by a team at the Digipen Game University. Upon seeing the design, Gabe Newell hired the students on the spot to develop the concept for the Source Engine.

It is not currently known where exactly Portal takes place in the Half-Life universe, nor who the player character is, exactly. Current statements from Valve indicate that the character will make an appearance in later episodes, but whether it will be in a post or pre portal fashion is unknown.

Valve recently released a Viral Marketing website called Aperture Science.com where you can take an application test of bizarre questions, and view first hand Aperture’s obsession with cake. Just use whatever for the login and ‘portal’ for the password, then type ‘apply’ to get the application.
Spoiler:

Don’t worry about the big-ass number they give you; it’ll randomly change so there’s no way you can actually type it in.

Portal will be released with Half-Life 2: Episode Two on October 9th, 2007 and will feature 3-4 hours worth of mind-bending puzzles. You can check out the Portal trailer on Steam, or download Narbacular Drop from http://www.nuclearmonkeysoftware.com/ to get an idea of how the game will play. Remember, there’s a hole in the sky through which things can fly!

Team Fortress 2
Yes. It’s back. Having been on the back burner for a long time now, and apparently having gone through multiple iterations away from the public eye, TF2 has gone back to it’s roots and has been revealed as an arcadey, campy, cell-shaded romp that looks like a ‘60’s spy movie mated with ‘The Incredible.’

Valve has committed to bringing the old-school feel of TF to the future, while at the same time re imagining the game for today’s technology So while you can rest assured that, say, the Heavy is going to be able to spew out bullets (and death) at high rate, there will be changes to some of the classes (such as the spy’s new ability to cloak). It is said that the medic class will receive a major overhaul in Valve effort to ensure that each class has something unique to offer the team.

Team Fortress 2 will be released with Half-Life 2: Episode Two on October 9th, 2007, and there are lots of trailers on steam and elsewhere. For example, this great one featuring the heavy weapons guy.

Half-Life 2: Episode 3 (Unreleased)
Episode 3 is currently being worked on by the team that made Episode 1, and is planned as the final episode of the trilogy that finishes out Half-Life 2's story arch.

Following the end of Episode 2, Barney finally takes out Gordon and the rest of the group for a round of drinks. One free beer leads to another and the night becomes one to remember.

Episode 3 takes place one year after the events of Episode 2. Alxy sues Gordon for custody of their love child, while Gordon spins into a dark abyss of alcoholism and drug use. The vortigaunts combine their power to open a portal back to their own world, as Earth turns into a shit show since the one hero who could have saved us all has turned into a drunken lout. Your role is to attend AA meetings and try and get your license to wear a Hazard suit back.

Vampire The Masquerade – Bloodlines
Vampire: The Masquerade – Bloodlines, abbreviated as Bloodlines or VTMB, is a computer role-playing game for Windows developed by Troika Games in 2004. Like Activision’s Vampire: The Masquerade – Redemption, Bloodlines is set in White Wolf, Inc.’s Vampire: The Masquerade universe, but it is not a sequel to the earlier game. The game allows the player to choose one of several different vampire clans and progress through the game according to the different strengths and weaknesses of the player’s character, as in its paper and pencil role playing origins.

Bloodlines is notable for being the first game along with Half-Life 2 to use Valve’s Source engine, which allows the game to be played from either the first-person or third-person shooter perspective. It is also Troika Games’ third title and the last to be made before Troika closed down in February 2005

The Ship
The Ship is a first person shooter computer game utilising Valve Software's Source engine developed at Outerlight Ltd. The game was released on July 11, 2006 on the Steam network with retail distribution in Europe and Australia in September, and April 10, 2007 for North America. A playable concept for The Ship was released as a modification for the game Half-Life in 2004.

The game is set on a 1920s recreational cruise ship. Each player is assigned a quarry, and the object is to murder him or her with nobody watching.

SiN Episodes
SiN Episodes is the title of a series of episodic games for the PC that would have expanded upon the 1998 computer game SiN. A total of nine episodes were planned with only the first one released. Developed by Ritual Entertainment and powered by the Source engine, the first episode "Emergence" was the first computer game by a major developer to both be produced episodically and delivered over the Internet without the intervention of a publisher. This was accomplished through Valve Corporation's Steam content delivery system.

With the sale of Ritual to MumboJumbo and departure of several employees, all future development of Sin Episodes appears to be delayed indefinitely, if not entirely canceled. MumboJumbo has already tasked Ritual to develop "high-quality casual content."

Dark Messiah of Might and Magic
Dark Messiah of Might and Magic is a first-person action game developed by Arkane Studios and Floodgate Entertainment. Kuju Entertainment developed the multiplayer mode. The player controls Sareth, the apprentice of the wizard Phenrig, after he is sent to the city of Stonehelm to accompany an expedition trying to retrieve a powerful artifact known as "The Skull of Shadows." The game is primarily known for its intuitive first-person melee combat.

The Xbox 360 version, titled Dark Messiah of Might and Magic: Elements, is under development, and will contain an expanded single-player campaign and a revamped multiplayer mode, as well as numerous bug-fixes and console specific enhancements.

Left 4 Dead (Unreleased)
Left4Dead, made by Turtle Rock Studios, most famous for CS:XBOX, CS:CZ and numerous CS:S maps, is a coop zombie game made on the Source engine. It utilizes an AI "Director" to place enemies and other things in order to make gameplay exciting and different each time. However, the four human players are not the only people in each server: players can join servers and play as boss zombies. The official website, http://www.l4d.com/, didn't work in Firefox, but the fan site http://left4dead411.com/ is said to be a great source of information about L4D.

The Crossing (Unreleased)
A unique concept with two gamemodes blended together. Skirmish is two teams fighting against each other, and Coop is two players working their way through the game. However, on certain levels the Skirmish people will somehow have the option to jump into the Coop game and fight against the Coop heroes.

Very little information can be found at the wikipedia page.

Natural Selection 2 (Unreleased)
picture:
Spoiler:
Unknown Worlds has finally unveiled the next game in their Natural Selection series: Natural Selection 2, currently planned to be released on the Source Engine. And it looks great, with (maybe) procedurally generated bacteria!

Unknown Worlds have have released a small, casual game in order to try and nab some funding for Natural Selection 2. The game, Zen of Sudoku, is being sold online for about 12.95, and it is currently planned to sell the game through Steam as well. You can check out the info on NS2 as well as Zen of Sodoku at http://www.unknownworlds.com/ns/

Alien Swarm: Infested (Unreleased)
Based on the popular Unreal Tournament 2004 mod, a top down, tactical, squad-based alien shooter, Alien Swarm: Infested is a new, commercial version to be released for the Source engine. The Black Cat Games is still keeping on the down low about Infested, for the time being, but you can check out their website at http://www.blackcatgames.com/swarm/

Postal III
Postal III is the sequel to Postal², developed by Running With Scissors, Inc. and scheduled for release for the Xbox 360 and PC in mid to late 2008. It was under the working title of POSTAL 3: Catharsis [2] until 2006-10-18, when it was announced that the name would be Postal III.

Postal III is said to feature different "murderer lifestyles", including serial killer, eco-terrorist, and presidential candidate. It will also continue and expand upon Postal²'s open world design. It will include motion-captured performances by a wide array of celebrities, including film stars and Playboy Playmates.

In the new game, the Dude emigrates to Paradise's sister town of Catharsis[3]. Unlike its predecessor the Postal III video game will not be based on the Unreal engine but rather on Valve's Source engine, which powered Half-Life 2.

Unlike the second game, Postal 3 switches from First Person mode to Third Person mode, enabling you to see your character at all times.

As seen in recent screens, a badger in some form of contraption appears to be a usable weapon.

Suds on
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