Cathode Tan - Games, Media and Geek Stuff
logo design by man bytes blog

Tuesday, December 28, 2004

Holiday Half Life

So now post holiday I can finally bite into the full version of Half-Life 2. Definately enjoying it. The most impressive bit is that this still feels like Half-Life. I never called that one. I had assumed that with the Source Engine that you would see a new feel to the game, like you did with UT2k3 and Doom. Not sure what they kept around, but the movement and "inner loop" (Epic's term for the interactions closest to the player, like weapon handling) ... still feel like Valve's classic.

And Valve still does some of the best set pieces in the industry. Some of the way the world interacts in these scenes makes HL2 feel more like a play than a game.

Still, I have to repeat the statements below. I'm amazed by the similarities between this and Doom 3 that everyone bitched about. Let's ... silly flashlight. Check. (sorry people, a $2 flashlight from a gas station has more juice than Gordon's ... WTF?). "Classic" monster AI. Check. (while the "squad" tactics were revolutionary in HL, they've grown pretty predictable now). Sweet monster movement which ends in rudimentary attack. Check. Check. (If the leapers don't remind you of Doom's imps, you're playing with your eyes closed.) Monster closets? Monsters respawning behind you? Monsters spawning from seemingly nowhere? Check, check check.

I'm by no means saying HL2 is a bad game ... it's a very good game. And definately there's a differential ratio at work here ... HL2's flashlight mechanics are less annoying than Doom 3's because the flashlight isn't as necessary. The monster closets are less noticeable because they are less constant. Etc., etc. Still, it's interesting to watch gamer perception.

I haven't decided if I'll mod for HL2. After getting UDS done, I'd consider it. Be interesting to do a City 17 Police mod in the same vein.

No comments: