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[Half-Life] 25th Anniversary Update and Documentary



  • DarkPrimusDarkPrimus Registered User regular
    urahonky wrote: »
    Don't get me wrong... New Xen is really good and feels like Valve made it. Lots of clever ideas and stuff but man just let me see the credits haha.

    Xen is literally like a third of Black Mesa.

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    autono-wally, erotibot300
  • urahonkyurahonky Registered User regular
    DarkPrimus wrote: »
    urahonky wrote: »
    Don't get me wrong... New Xen is really good and feels like Valve made it. Lots of clever ideas and stuff but man just let me see the credits haha.

    Xen is literally like a third of Black Mesa.

    Yeah I just finished it.

    That last boss fight was... Something. Felt like I was playing Doom or something. I'm glad I didn't stay up last night to finish the game. I thought for sure I was at the end and was going to push through it, but it was another 4 hours or so.

  • urahonkyurahonky Registered User regular
    I was tempted to use cheats and just get through some parts because I wanted it to end lol.

  • Undead ScottsmanUndead Scottsman Registered User regular
    It's kinda funny how they went all in on Xen, when their original design philosophy was like "On a rail sux, let's shorten it."

    There's definitely a lot of cruft that could be excised from Xen (the multi-area flower puzzle, the water puzzle in Gonarch's Lair, a bunch of stuff from Interloper.)

  • augustaugust where you come from is gone Registered User regular
  • Undead ScottsmanUndead Scottsman Registered User regular
    Are you bored? Does your life seem empty now that both Black Mesa and Half-Life: Alyx are out? Craving that new fix of waiting, and waiting, and waiting?

    Tripmine (people making the Blue Shift and Opposing Force remakes) had a decent media drop you can check out. I can't wait to play these games in five years. :wink:

  • augustaugust where you come from is gone Registered User regular
    edited June 2020
    august on
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  • KrathoonKrathoon Registered User regular
    edited July 2020
    Can you play Alyx while sitting down? If so, I may play around with it.

    Krathoon on
  • DhalphirDhalphir don't you open that trapdoor you're a fool if you dareRegistered User regular
    Krathoon wrote: »
    Can you play Alyx while sitting down? If so, I may play around with it.


  • ZeroczZerocz Space Cowboy In SpaceRegistered User regular
    Not only can you sit, but you can switch as you like, on the fly, between sitting and standing. Game's a masterclass in VR design.

    DarmakKoopahTroopahElvenshaeLindurahonkyMr Ray
  • BloodySlothBloodySloth Registered User regular
    that being said, if you can rock roomscale, it makes the firefights, and even just dicking around opening drawers in apartments, super cool.

  • KrathoonKrathoon Registered User regular
    I will have to pull away from the desk if I play. I can totally see myself wacking my hands into it.

  • Big DookieBig Dookie Smells great! Houston, TXRegistered User regular
    Krathoon wrote: »
    I will have to pull away from the desk if I play. I can totally see myself wacking my hands into it.

    I think the good thing about Alyx - compared to some other VR games like Gorn or Echo Arena - is that you don’t do a lot of “flailing” or super fast movements. There isn’t really any kind of melee system, so the vast majority of the combat is gunplay driven and utilizes more methodical movements, even for reloading weapons and such. The few times you do need to throw something like tossing a grenade or distracting someone with a vodka bottle (you guys know what I’m talking about), you’re still generally more accurate with slower movements anyway. So most of the time, as long as you keep your head, it’s not too likely you’ll be swinging your controllers wildly around.

    The only consistent movement in the game that could be a flailing motion is when you use the gravity gloves to pull stuff in from far away. Even with that though, you’re almost always starting with the controller away from you and pulling it in, so there it’s highly unlikely to smack anything except yourself maybe. I know for me, I did stand while playing, but almost always kept my feet firmly planted in place. I never felt like I was getting an inferior experience though. So yeah, as long as you give yourself just a little bit of room around you, it should be totally fine.

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  • Undead ScottsmanUndead Scottsman Registered User regular
    Final Hours of Half-Life: Alyx has been out for awhile but I only just not started downloading it.

    5gig download, good grief!

  • augustaugust where you come from is gone Registered User regular
  • MulletudeMulletude Registered User regular
    edited September 2020
    Am finally replaying Black Mesa since the Xen update...and man

    At first I thought it was neat, the new Xen.

    But now the words 'exhausting' and 'repetitive' are how I feel.

    Mulletude on
    XBL-Dug Danger WiiU-DugDanger Steam-
  • MulletudeMulletude Registered User regular
    Finished up Black Mesa and am now running through everything else HL again.

    Opposing Force: hadn't touched this since a couple playthroughs back when it released. Doesn't feel as tight as HL at all. And all the new monsters aren't all that great. And holy shit, so many weapons. Definitely remember it more fondly with my nostalgia goggles.

    Blue Shift: Much tighter and a more "Half Life" feeling expansion. Love that you are Barney. And seeing Gordon pass by on a tram early on is a nice touch. Overall I prefer it to Opposing Force.

    Next up, HL2 and the episodes for the who knows how many'th times.

    And maybe another run through of OG HL. Black Mesa is nice but the original is one of my top all time games, even with the dated visuals. Used to run through it at least once a year.

    Can't wait to someday get a vr set and finally get into Alyx. One day.

    XBL-Dug Danger WiiU-DugDanger Steam-
  • Undead ScottsmanUndead Scottsman Registered User regular
    Me, literally yesterday: Wow, it's been six months since the last freeman's mind. I wonder if it's been canceled.


  • PeewiPeewi I edited this in 2024 I edited this in 2024Registered User regular
  • HardtargetHardtarget There Are Four Lights VancouverRegistered User regular
    omg the ending

  • augustaugust where you come from is gone Registered User regular
  • Undead ScottsmanUndead Scottsman Registered User regular

    Definitive edition changes look good. I might wait until a full release before I play through it though.

  • Undead ScottsmanUndead Scottsman Registered User regular
    The final major update for Black Mesa was released (1.5 aka the Definitive Edition) marking the end of major development on Black Mesa after over 16 years. A decade and a half. Wow.

    There's still some known issues to fix and they'll keep supporting it with bug fixes and whatnot, but Crowbar Collective's attention will now be able to go elsewhere and I'm incredibly curious what they do next, since rumblings indicated it wasn't going to be a remake of something else.

    Patch notes
    Black Mesa: Definitive Edition
    The Final Major Update for Black Mesa
    We are happy to announce that we are releasing our final big update to Black Mesa as a free “Definitive Edition” update. Since March, we have worked to polish the game in terms of both art and design.

    If you have been waiting to try Black Mesa, now is a great time to dive in. We’ll continue to support the game to fix major bugs, and the known issues below.

    Highlights of the Definitive Edition
    -Massive polish and art updates throughout the game
    -Complete lighting and gameplay pass to the chapter “Power Up”
    -Complete redesign of second “On A Rail” map (map B)
    -Significant optimizations across the whole game that will improve performance on low to mid range PCs
    -Outdoor art passes for “We’ve Got Hostiles”, “On A Rail”, “Questionable Ethics”, “Surface Tension”, and “Forget About Freeman”
    -New shield and architectural art for Interloper
    -Full workshop support
    -Updated closed caption/translation files for:
    With all the languages from our Crowdin campaign on the way!

    Known Issues
    -We’re still working on controller support for the main menu
    -Still have to add multiplayer player model select for new UI
    -Female scientists unintentionally do not heal player
    -Still have to release map source files (we are looking at the best way to do this)
    -Sometimes maps in multiplayer have their bloom blown out

    Changes Since Last News Post
    -Significant further improvements to workshop functionality. Mods should now be able to properly support a wide variety of custom content, without any need for a custom folder
    -Deprecated scenes.image. This means workshop content can now ship custom scenes without overriding Black Mesa’s scenes too.
    -Added a convar which allows users to disable all workshop loading functionality entirely. Add +workshop_disable 1 to the game’s launch options to try this.
    -Fixed Workshop crash bug related to multi-part VPKs
    -Smoothed out suit charger animations and increased update rate on player’s HUD, to make everything feel a bit punchier and smoother
    -Fix deferred rendering bug related to gbuffer, which should fix all the rendering artifacts/bugs and potential crashes related to secondary render targets: including reflection/refraction/monitors, etc.
    -Fixed soda cans from vending machines not colliding with each other
    -Added little color pops when the player picks up a health kit or a battery, just to help draw attention to that fact
    -Fixed a crash related to old depreciated flashlight sprites
    -The Multiplayer scoreboard can show up to 24 names now
    -Fixed key binding bugs related to the new UI
    -Added dynamic lights to chargers, Gargs, flames, and a few other things which should’ve had lights
    -Added support for justifying the closed captions to the right side of the screen, for the languages which do that
    -Fixed monitor functionality on the Surface Tension mortar screen
    -Fixed a bug related to newpostprocessing, where it wouldn’t turn off completely when disabled
    -Reduced collision/rendering volume of newSpotlights by half for better culling and faster rendering
    -Fixed rotation bugs for newSpotlights and func_tracktrain, for a prettier game
    -Procedural dynamic lights have been disabled on potato quality mode for better FPS
    -Significantly buffed the Gluon gun in multiplayer

    -Improved fidelity of blood splatters
    -Fixed some of the charger lights occasionally being in the wrong position
    -Fixed flickering slime vines at end of Xen swamp level
    -Increased water frame rate in Lambda Core
    -Added additional architectural art to Interloper C1
    -Fixed car windshields to render objects behind them properly and sort better
    -Fixed multiple Interloper shields to display properly, including the Vort Village intro and the large circular shield in Interloper D
    -Fixed excessive shine on some rocks in ST
    -Fixed floating props in Xen B1
    -Added electric particles to knocked over radio tower in Surface Tension
    -Fixed rock collision in Surface Tension
    -Fixed green plant alpha cards in Interloper to work properly with gbuffer

    -Fixed multiple issues with the in-game audio sliders. Fixed the “sound effect” slider adjusting everything except footsteps and gunfire, resulting in poor audio mix. Now you should be able to hear everything mixed as intended, which really improves the audio experience for anyone who has adjusted their audio sliders!
    -Major improvements to the in-game music entity, which fixes maps which use the more dynamic music system. Music tracks should blend more seamlessly and quickly as a result
    -Adjusted Inbound tracks so they finish slightly before the level transition. No more abrupt cuts in music!
    -Moved Surface Tension Dam fight song over to the new dynamic music system, so the piece properly underscores the fight now no matter how you play it
    -The music in the elevator fight in Interloper D is even smoother and cooler now!
    -Fixed many missing NPC sounds, such as reloads

    Level Design
    -Autosave pass on the entire game to reduce frustrating deaths that send you back really far in the level
    -Dynamic light optimization pass on the entire game to improve performance, especially on low to mid-range PCs
    -As always, many many small bugfixes and tweaks based on community feedback, that might not be mentioned here
    -Multiple balance adjustments game-wide to smooth out the difficulty curve and remove frustrating pain points
    -Significantly improved damage output of Guards (both Glock and .357) so they are much more worthy and effective companions now
    -Fixed several instances where the Guard’s arms would clip through his chest

    Anomalous Materials
    -Prevented the player from being able to use the HEV charger next to the suit pickup before the suit battery functions of the suit had initialized. This prevents an odd edge-case bug where if you did that, your HUD would disappear forever.
    -Moved the toilet paper slightly closer to the edge of the sink, to make it easier for players to grab
    -Improved lighting on AM lockers

    Unforeseen Consequences
    -Fixed player being able to prevent the tube headcrab from spawning in Map B
    -Adjusted some of the logic for the Map B “headbanging” Zombie, to better signpost when he comes out to attack you
    -Added a little hudhint for the Glock in Map B, so new players know about the alternate fire
    -Clipped off a spot in Map C where players could get stuck behind a cryo tank
    -Locked a door in Map C to encourage players to break things with the Crowbar, as a form of basic training

    Office Complex
    -Added more Zombies to the Map A post-Shotgun ambush
    -Fixed Guard interactions with the turrets in Map A

    We’ve Got Hostiles
    -Significantly adjusted the Map C (warehouse/outdoor) fight to properly draw players outside and use the space more effectively. Added some barriers and adjusted the side of the bunker the player’s exit is on, to force players to run around the space a bit more than before. The fight is a lot more fun now!
    -Prevented the Osprey from being damageable via the mortars, which should fix instances where the Osprey is running around on fire

    Blast Pit
    -Fixed the missing VOX sounds that were added in the 1.5 beta
    -Adjusted the “dying” scientist in Map B so he doesn’t turn his head to face you after he’s dead
    -Destroyed one of the bridges in Map B as a callback to the HL1 iteration
    -Adjusted the scientist that gets killed by the Tentacle, to prevent him being completely frozen in place before the scene starts. Also fixed an edge case where players could get crushed by the door closing behind them.
    -Several fixes to the Guard that gets killed by the Tentacle, to prevent a weird edge case where he would sometimes become invulnerable
    -Fixed player being able to break the puzzle by pressing both generator buttons in quick succession in Map D
    -Fixed bad lighting on a pipe at the end of Map E

    Power Up
    -Clipped off some points where players could get stuck
    -Added an emergency light to the bottom of the lift that the HECU come down in Map B, to draw attention to the movement
    -Made the crate blocking the generator in Map B be invulnerable before the player goes down there, to prevent a scenario where the Houndeyes/explosive barrels would sometimes prematurely destroy the crate and cause the map to progress without the player’s intervention

    On a Rail
    -Substantial rework to the new silo puzzle based on community feedback from 1.5 beta. The puzzle is now properly linearized and better signposted with visuals. This should alleviate all/most of the soft locks and potential confusion during this section.
    -Added an elaborate series of cool scenes that play out if you bring the Guard with you up the silo. Give it a try!
    -Added corner pieces to silo platforms to help NPC with pathing and give the player more space to run around (and prevent falling between levels)
    -Fixed the elevator in the new silo so that players won’t get crushed/stuck in the door when it closes
    -Adjusted the Marines throughout the chapter who are scripted to fire the RPG at you, so that they should now do so every single time without fail

    -Fixed a bad decal that was showing up as a glitchy puddle in Map A
    -Re-arted the skybox outside the helipad in Map C to match the new art and style
    -Fixed some visible nodraw at the end of Map C

    Residue Processing
    -Clipped a tree that you could walk through

    Questionable Ethics
    -Further attempted fixes for a soft lock that was possible at the end of Map F, by running into the door before the scientist had fully played his sequence

    Surface Tension
    -Fixed many instances of shiny rocks from the previous beta throughout the chapter
    -Removed lots of old and ugly detail foliage models throughout Surface Tension and replaced them with newer ones
    -Rebalanced the Map A warehouse fight to reduce difficulty spike and improve gameplay smoothness/experience
    -Rebalanced Map A Apache to reduce his accuracy to ⅓ of what it was before. He won’t laser beam players quite as hard anymore (though he is still pretty accurate).
    -Adjusted a lot of the new art in Map A to use better/newer foliage and rock models, for consistency with the rest of the chapter
    -Many small tweaks to bits and pieces in the new Map B art to fix up things like visible world seams, floating rocks, etc
    -Added level fog to Map C (cliffside map) to help reduce visual noise and provide better layer separation for players, to help make the map more readable with the new art. We found a neat little trick here that allowed us to keep the existing sky fog effect while also using a different level fog effect simultaneously!
    -Rebalanced Map D “whack-a-Gordon” fight to provide the player with more cover and reduce difficulty spike
    -Fixed Guard in Map F being unresponsive past a certain point, he should now play out as he did before, with a few of his existing improvements
    -Fixed broken mortar and fuel truck in Map I end scene (this bug was insane on the code front!)
    -Added a trigger to Map F which deletes the Osprey gibs before you go up to the TOW Launcher, preventing a situation where sometimes the gibs would block your line of fire to the Abrams
    -Fixed TOW Launcher in Map F firing hilariously slow rockets

    Forget About Freeman!
    -New art for snark nests throughout Map A, to make it look beautifully disgusting and to match the infestation type found in Map B

    Lambda Core
    -Rebalanced the Map A Assassin fight to prevent players from cheesing it by simply sprinting to the end. Prevented Assassins from being able to jump onto the upper walkways and shoot down at players through the grate. Adjusted the container maze layout slightly to encourage players to move through it and fight in there. Added many supplies to help achieve the same goal. Spaced out Assassins into multiple waves, so the player doesn’t end up fighting too many at once.
    -Added some signposting into the ladder the Scientist drops in Map B, so players are more likely to know where to go when the fight is over
    -Fixed Map B gun-range door not opening properly
    -Removed an extraneous Long Jump hudhint from Map H, as the player is already told about it so much

    -Added a tumbling hat animation for when the player takes the Hat through to Xen
    -Changed Houndeye “alert island” sound used on the Houndeye island in Map A
    -Added an animation to the winch prop that pulls islands around, so that you can see something is happening even without looking at the islands
    -Fixed floating ground polyps under the Tree of Truth in Map B1
    -Fixed ugly areaportal when looking back into previous level while in Map C1

    -Further adjustments to the new forcefield models to boost visual quality and improve consistency
    -Cubemap pass on Map A1 (Gargathon) to help boost the visual quality
    -Fixed up the Gargantua lights on A1 to look better and to improve performance
    -Gave the Gargantuas things to do after the player has escaped in A1, so they don’t just stand around...menacingly
    -Fixed visible world FarZ in Map B2
    -More art passes on Map C to help boost the visual quality
    -Art pass on the boxes which hold the Controller shield crystals in Map C2

    -Significantly improved performance in Nihilanth’s chamber for low/mid-range PCs

    Guess it's time to play through this game again.

    BloodySlothDark Raven XElvenshaeZerocz
  • ForarForar #432 Toronto, Ontario, CanadaRegistered User regular
    So, I finally finished Alyx last week, and overall I enjoyed the experience. I liked most of it, and other than one chapter I would highly recommend the experience for my friends who are into VR and especially into Half Life.
    Some people, possibly here, mentioned that they thought the Jeff chapter was the worst one in the game, and I agree. I get what they were doing, changing things up, but having a sound sensitive force of nature that cannot otherwise be fought off was kind of annoying. Even with a new computer and playing on easy (after having to restart a few times previously, I just wanted to see the story through more than I wanted challenging combat/ammo and health management), and the lengthy load times meant I wasn't particularly interested in sitting there staring at the loading map more than necessary.

    Overall a strong A- experience, upgraded to A+ without Jeff (and apparently there is a workaround that lets you console command your way past it, which I didn't use on my playthrough, but might in the future to not have to deal with that).

    Like, the mechanic of covering your mouth to move through areas was kind of neat, but also kind of aggravating.

    Anyways, the ending, and especially the post credits sequence, have me hungry for more, and I hope that something new for the franchise emerges in the years to come.

    I also snagged The Final Hours while it was on sale, and it was an interesting read. I do hope that even with the small userbase that VR has, that this game proved to be enough of a success that it rekindles some interest at Valve in actually launching games (I know, I know, there's been other stuff).

    Finishing it off also meant that I could finally catch up on this thread and the now months old discussions within, the VR thread (which saw way less activity regarding this game than I thought it was going to have, kudos on not dropping spoilers all the same), and the Valve News Network guy.

    First they came for the Muslims, and we said NOT TODAY, MOTHERFUCKER!
  • Undead ScottsmanUndead Scottsman Registered User regular

    Civvie does Half-Life.

    Despite being an hour long, a feel like he could have said more about the game.

  • Undead ScottsmanUndead Scottsman Registered User regular

    At this rate, Valve is going to release Half-Life 3 before Ross finishes Half-Life 2.

  • augustaugust where you come from is gone Registered User regular
  • Undead ScottsmanUndead Scottsman Registered User regular
    So my Half-Life 2 hat that I got with the Gold Edition of HL2 is kind of on it's last legs; falling apart and having absorbed so much gunk that I doubt a wash would be good enough. I'm in the process of replacing it with a Astroneer hat, and which point I'm not sure what I should do with this old hat. Keep it as a memory? Bury it out back? Give it a viking funeral? What do you guys think?

  • CanadianWolverineCanadianWolverine Registered User regular
    No chance of patching it together, going full ship of Theseus on it, eh?

  • Dark Raven XDark Raven X Laugh hard, run fast, be kindRegistered User regular
    Last Legs is the name of the track that plays during the Strider assault at the end of Episode 2.

    ...if that helps at all.

    Oh brilliant
  • Undead ScottsmanUndead Scottsman Registered User regular
    Casting for the Half-Life movie is out.

    (just kidding)

    Peewiwebguy20SmokeStacksCanadianWolverineKoopahTroopahmanwiththemachinegunBig DookieDark Raven XFencingsax
  • Undead ScottsmanUndead Scottsman Registered User regular

    Civvie does Opposing Force and Blue Shift.

    Mostly agree with him on Op4, though I thought they had fixed the buggy allied AI in modern steam versions. While he's right that Blue Shift is the lesser expansion, I always thought it was a great little slice of Half-Life gameplay, something you can run through in a couple of hours.

  • HardtargetHardtarget There Are Four Lights VancouverRegistered User regular
    75% off matching it's lowest sale price ever (5 bucks)

  • urahonkyurahonky Registered User regular
    edited September 2021
    Buy it y'all. It's good.

    e: How the fuck did I fall into a thread that hasn't had any activity since September 15th?

    urahonky on
  • Undead ScottsmanUndead Scottsman Registered User regular

    Guess it's been a couple years since I played through Half-Life.

  • MulletudeMulletude Registered User regular
    So I'm late to the party but I just finished up Alyx and yes, holy shit that ending left me very excited for the future of Half Life

    XBL-Dug Danger WiiU-DugDanger Steam-
  • The_SpaniardThe_Spaniard It's never lupines Irvine, CaliforniaRegistered User regular
    I need to get around to playing Alyx myself. Also excitedly waiting for Operation: Black Mesa. If it's half as good as Black Mesa was then we are in for yet another treat. I just hope it releases within our lifetimes, because Black Mesa took for-ev-er to come out.

    Playstation/Origin/GoG: Span_Wolf Xbox/uPlay/Bnet: SpanWolf Nintendo: Span_Wolf SW-7097-4917-9392 Steam:
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