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Incline Half Life 2 is great and I love it

Discussion in 'General Gaming' started by Stella Brando, Apr 2, 2020.

  1. Viata Arcane

    Viata
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    Playing HL1. Having a blast, just got to Forget about Freeman, but had to stop to go back to study. :shredder:
     
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  2. schru Cipher

    schru
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    Those two ramps that need to be raised? The one with blue barrels is rather tedious on replays, but the other puzzle basically consists in climbing a ladder, walking down a little suspended bridge, and pushing down a washing-machine, which is no different from going somewhere to flick a switch.

    The number of physics puzzles Half-Life 2 had seems to be really exaggerated. I can't be sure now, but from what I recall only those two and the see-saw puzzle in the canals required actual manipulation of physical forces. So that would make three, of which one can be easily skipped by swaying the see-saw with your own weight. The rest are things like removing plugs from sockets with grenades or the gravity gun, putting a car battery in place, or removing bars from some doors.

    Edit: Ah, right, I forgot about the see-saw in the floor-is-lava level. For those who don't care about going with the whole theme of this map, it can be easily skipped too.
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2020
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  3. Stella Brando Arcane

    Stella Brando
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    It took me a while to get the see-saw working in the tremors/antlion level. But I didn't mind because I like the level concept. I actually travelled (on metal sheets) along the beach, just to have a look.

    Also took me a while to find that car battery (I didn't think to kick over a bathtub)



    Actually, Curratum I just picked this avatar because I liked it (But I have played some Ion Fury since, Its alright, but not great)
     
    Last edited: Apr 6, 2020
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  4. JarlFrank I like Thief THIS much Patron

    JarlFrank
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    Half Life 2 was a great tech demo for a great engine that still holds up imo. Source engine has a cool look about it, technically impressive visually and capable of physics but not yet oversaturated with post-processing effects like modern engines.

    But the game itself is thoroughly mediocre. Hey, we got a vehicle section! Hey, here's a physics puzzle! Hey, look at our great facial animations!
    The weapons are underwhelming for the most part. The major workhorse gun is an SMG that feels rather weak and inaccurate. Meh. Shotgun also feels weak. Pulse rifle doesn't feel like it has a punch either. The cool alien weapons from HL1 are gone. Only cool weapon is the gravity gun, whose main purpose is also to demonstrate the engine's technical capabilities.

    10/10 tech demo, 5/10 mediocre average game.
     
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  5. ropulos Savant

    ropulos
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    the episodes are dogshit, mate
     
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  6. Sreggin Etah I Learned

    Sreggin Etah I
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    i'm a half life fan but i think the series is super overrated, Unreal came before HL1 and did everything that HL did and sometimes better.

    Half-life 2 is better than HL1 but the story is all over the top nonsense and doesn't have the same feel that HL1 had.

    HL1: good game, overrated as fuck.

    HL2: Great game, bad sequel, overrated as hell too.
     
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  7. ropulos Savant

    ropulos
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    is it really overrated when the common online consensus in 2020 is that the game is overrated? :thinkingemoji:
     
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  8. Falksi Arcane

    Falksi
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    How bad they are makes them feel like there's 10000000 of them.

    It's like being shot a handful of times and saying "I only had to deal with a few bullets"
     
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  9. schru Cipher

    schru
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    I don't disagree that there's something very wrong with Half-Life 2's combat and level design that make it rather dull and easy most of the time, but it doesn't make sense to say it's a tech demo. The engine was developed for the game and Valve cared a great deal about coming up with ideas for it—putting results of their efforts aside.

    Incidentally, Valve also did post-processing well in Left 4 Dead at a time when it was a lazy replacement for handling tone and colour composition in other games.

    The vehicle sections in Half-Life 2 have some of the best if not the best driving mechanics and driving levels in any shooter ever. The way the vehicles handle is good, well-integrated with normal movement mechanics, so that you're able to look around comfortably, independently of the direction in which you're driving, the levels are designed specifically for vehicles with fun obstacles and a real sense that you're travelling large distances. In other games of this type the mechanics are either too awkward or simplistic for those sections to be any fun, the sections are entirely scripted roller coaster rides, or otherwise vehicles are little but a side-show. Far Cry has somewhat decent sections with car chases, but they're always short and more of a brief alternative to walking in a few locations. In Crysis the playgrounds for vehicles were even briefer and their interiors were too ugly to look at, with annoyingly narrow field of view. In new Far Cries they're just means of commuting between locations and everything is too run-of-the-mill and repetitive to be enjoyable, but sandboxes are a different kind of thing.

    I can't think of too many examples now, but it seems like integrating good driving sections was something many developers attempted before Half-Life 2, but they were never any good in linear games until then. Redneck Rampage Rides Again had very similar sections (and a crow-bar, and the same lead artist), but the handling was just too poor. Duke Nukem Forever was supposed to have some, but if the final game is anything to go by, they weren't going to be very good either. Driving in Sin was akward and the sections were very brief. No One Lives Forever has likewise a very brief section that is there just for the sake of having a vehicle than the mechanic being any fun, and the handling is very poor too. There were multiple games with the player in the passenger seat too that were more like moving turret sections. The exceptions were a different kind of games with more open approach like Operation Flashpoint or the onslaught mode in Unreal Tournament 2004.

    (Edit: at least this is as far as I know or can recall from the shooters I've played.)

    There's definitely a problem with the balancing of weapons and how much damage enemies do, but is it really the case that the SMG is supposed to be the main weapon? It's effective and satisfying against the CPs, but the player is given the pulse rifle as soon as he meets the first Combine soldiers and it's almost excessively good against them as it's accurate in short bursts and kills individual soldiers in a fraction of the time the SMG in the first game did; there's not shortage of ammunition for it either. The shot-gun is quite strong, either as strong as in the first game or stronger: it has a punchier sound and it kills soldiers with one shot near the head, with the boudle-shot option always being there too. It's actually one of the nicer shot-guns in shooters, I'd say. While I do dislike the pulse rifle, how does it not have a punch? It's very loud, with a deep tone, gives off a strong echo, there's a pronounced recoil in the animation and in handling if it's fired for a longer time. I'd rather say it just looks and feels awkward for some reason and there's some elementary problem with the balance, since the soldiers really can't do anything while the player can comfortably stand in place and shoot them in the head with it one by one.

    The problem with the game seems to be that Valve too much emphasis on presentation and worked too little on actual combat dynamics, and then made the game too easy to make it accessible to casual players. So again, I don't disagree that there's something very wrong with it, it's just that the usual criticisms seem entirely off the mark.

    Unreal did little of what Half-Life did in terms of set pieces and clever encounter design. Both games start very easy, but where Half-Life introduces elaborate set pieces with aggressive soldiers, interesting environments to traverse in terms of platforming and obstacles, and aliens with more vexing attacks towards the end, Unreal only really has the beefier Skaarj warriors towards the end who can take more damage and so the player can have a nice little dance with them once he acquires better weapons like the flak cannon. There's something very wrong with the kind of design where the first enemy in the game fires volleys of rockets at you only for you to discover that they don't really do any significant damage.
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2020
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  10. ropulos Savant

    ropulos
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    Not to defend the whole game, but the first Halo had good vehicle gameplay back in the day.
     
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  11. schru Cipher

    schru
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    Ah, sorry, I thought I should add that this enumeration was to the extent of my knowledge, so I'm probably unaware of some good examples. I did hear that Halo's combat is pretty fun despite other problems with the game and the excessive hype that surrounds the series.
     
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  12. schru Cipher

    schru
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    I forgot to mention this point. It's true that Valve could have thought of something exotic like that for the sequel, but they also put more thought into the question if the weapons they were including were actually useful. The snarks were genuinely fun and useful, but there were very few areas in the original that were suitable for them, and then the player didn't get many of them at all. I've replayed the game just three days ago and I tried to use them more, but there aren't that many suitable opportunities for it, as most encounters with the soldiers are either too small, take place in geometrically-unsuitable locations, involve soldiers fighting with aliens, or the player being nudged to use some other approach like detonating exploding barrels. When I reached what is probably the single biggest supply of them in that air duct with Xen infestation, I found I had the full amount anyway. Of course one is free to use them whenever, but it's more satisfying to use them against many soldiers from a position where one can watch them fight.

    The hivehand is almost completely useless. It's nice conceptually, but in practice it's just weaker than any other weapon as you can kill only one soldier with it at best without pausing and you always have something more effective at hand.

    The gravity gun isn't there just to show off the physics technology either. Its implementation is seamless, it works well for clearing away obstacles, using objects which may or may not break as shields, using objects as projectiles, which deal different damage depending on their hardness and heaviness, it lets you grab grenades from the air and jolt them back against the enemies more effectively than by hand, and then there's pulling objects from a distance that might otherwise be hard or bothersome to reach. For a weapon that the player isn't specifically forced to use except in Ravenholm (which does get tiresome because of how blatantly it nudges you to use the g-gun), it does do a lot. Comparable weapons or abilities in other games are always pretty limited or so cumbersome to use that one might as well not bother.
     
    Last edited: Apr 3, 2020
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  13. Fronzel Neekburm Arcane Patron

    Fronzel Neekburm
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    Codex 2014 PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire Make the Codex Great Again! Grab the Codex by the pussy Codex USB, 2014 Shadorwun: Hong Kong
    That wasn't the worst of it. The worst of it was having to listen to endless inane banter and exposition from unkillable NPCs!

    Don't get me started about the endless congratulatory dialogue for accomplishing the most menial tasks...

    "Wow, Dr Freeman! No one has managed to climb through that linear air duct as fast as you did!"
     
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  14. Fronzel Neekburm Arcane Patron

    Fronzel Neekburm
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    Codex 2014 PC RPG Website of the Year, 2015 Codex 2016 - The Age of Grimoire Make the Codex Great Again! Grab the Codex by the pussy Codex USB, 2014 Shadorwun: Hong Kong
    HL2 did all of these things. The Episodes (the first one in particular) just took the very worst aspects of HL2 and decided to make the entire game revolve around it.

    All things considered, HL2 is a mediocre, but serviceable game. Episode 1, on the other hand, is absolute dogshit.
     
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  15. Lone Wolf Arcane

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    These are some hot takes on one of the greatest FPS' of all time.

    You know what else sucks? Sword of the Samurai. Sure, it might have been interesting back in 1989, but recent games have just done everything it did so much better, which is why it sucks. New things are just so much better. I love new things.
     
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  16. agentorange Arcane Patron

    agentorange
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    Codex 2012
     
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  17. RRRrrr Arcane

    RRRrrr
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    It's interesting that I used to really like Alyx when I was young. I always imagined the chick from 1984 like her, she was with short hair as well. Now, all these years later, I find Alyx needy, annoying and cringy.

    On a more serious note, the design of City 17 was extremely cool. The Eastern European atmosphere, the crumbling city, the futuristic citadel, it was great. Driving around the world was also nice, the game had a good sense of scale. The only part that has aged horribly is the shooting, which is bad for a shooter. Only Episode 2 holds up well, because it had cool enemies rather than hitscan generic soldiers.
     
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  18. Semiurge Learned

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    FPS perfected. Innovative, evocative, detailed, intuitive and fresh (at the time of release). There's still games being made that don't feature player camera tracking or whatever it's called as means of giving depth to character interactions, like when you look at a particular item or people it will trigger a specific reaction. And I'm a little sad every time when I have to leave my bug warriors behind, they knew how to tug those emotional strings.
     
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  19. Tehdagah Arcane

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    I dislike all Half Life games.
     
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  20. Beastro Arcane

    Beastro
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    Ravenholm and the antlion dune buggie bits wore on me heavily.

    They turned the game into a "play it once and done" game.

    I loved the rebar crossbow and wound up ammo hacking to just use that all the time. It was the only weapon with a good punch to it and the nailing people to walls was icing on the cake.
     
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  21. Viata Arcane

    Viata
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    Finished Half-Life 1 and 2(not the episodes yet).
    I found HL1 way better, straight to the action, no "boat/car" tedious and long part, so on. I'll wait to finish the episodes before I decide which one I liked the most.
    However, it's quite sad to know how great the Source engine is in HL2 and it was not as good in Vampire. :negative:
     
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  22. Stella Brando Arcane

    Stella Brando
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    Quake is the game I would describe as a 'tech demo.' All of its advances were technical. It was the opposite of Duke Nukem, which was full of flair, personality and humour. Who is the Quake guy? Why is he fighting demons?

    'Lol who cares about dat bro just shoot sum shit.'

    If Quake was an RPG it would be Diablo.
     
    Last edited: Apr 13, 2020
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  23. Stella Brando Arcane

    Stella Brando
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    It's not about exposition so much... Duke was really inventive and had great ideas in most levels... you weren't fighting anonymous demons in an unknown castle, you were in restaurants and locations in LA where all the objects made sense and really worked. And Duke himself had his own point of view and would comment on the things he saw. Quake guy was just a cypher - he didn't really have a reason to do what he was doing.

    Quake pushed background things forward - graphics, 3D - but didn't provide action games any colour or character. That's why it reminds me of Diablo... that game can't be played like a normal RPG: your character fights skeletons not for any personal reasons but because that's what video game characters just do, bro.

    I'm not seriously against 'bro shooters' -- I can kind of see why people could like them. I just don't feel they're for me.
     
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