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Half-Life 2

3 months ago

4 months ago

Feature: Listen to us say the same lines over and over

Podcast: Who are your favourite NPCs?

Ah, the non-player character. Stoic endurer of all our sadistic whims. It’s time the monsters on the RPS podcast, the Electronic Wireless Show, made tribute to these humble little robots, whether they’re annoying companions, side characters, or disembodied human heads. Let’s talk about some of our favourites.

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5 months ago

Feature: The worthiest reticules of all time

The 50 best FPS on PC

The best shooters endure. While the state of the art moves on in other genres and leaves old designs in the dust, it's as fun to fire a well-made shotgun from an early 90s FPS as from one released today. For that reason, this list runs the gamut from genre classics to those released in the last year. There's bound to be something for you…

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8 months ago

Final Fantasy XV getting demo next week, also adding Gordon Freeman cosplay

A proper playable demo of Final Fantasy XV Windows Edition is coming next week, containing the RPG's first chapter, following the recent benchmark tool. A demo! In this day and age! Bless their hearts. Square Enix have talked a lot about wanting to do the PC version right, mods and all, and they do seem to be going for it. They're even teaming up with…

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12 months ago

1 year ago

Feature: Three to one

Making The Orange Box: how 3 Valve games became 1

The Orange Box is one of the strangest quirks of gaming history. Never before had a developer released three brand new, entirely separate games at the same time in one package, and thanks to digital distribution, it probably won't happen again. What makes The Orange Box truly remarkable though is that it contained two of the most-anticipated games of 2007, and what proved to be…

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Er… so Half-Life’s writer maybe just revealed the complete plot of HL2: Episode 3

The lesson here is "never go to sleep." All sorts of things happen while people sleep. Cats go on adventures, presidents threaten nuclear war and, well, ex-Valve writers post thinly-disguised plot summaries of the unreleased and, so far as best guesses go, long-cancelled Half-Life 2: Episode 3. Long time Half-Life scribe, the excellent Marc Laidlaw (who left Valve last year), casually tossed out a link…

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Black Mesa is dreaming of a Xen Christmas

So committed is third-party Half-Life remake Black Mesa [official site] to emulation of its much vaunted inspiration that it has now fully embraced ValveTime. Black Mesa was first released as a free mod in 2012, followed by a spit'n'polished paid version two years ago, but still with the notorious jump'n'fail alien world section from Half Life's final act missing. Plan was to rethink rather than…

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2 years ago

Feature: Praise be to Mod

Have You Played… Garry’s Mod?

Have You Played? is an endless stream of game retrospectives. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time. I know what you’re looking for. You’re looking for a game that let’s you be a janitor in a school riddled with drug dealers and class clowns. But also a game that will let you be a cop fighting robbers. But also a…

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Feature: Gordon Freemods

Best Half-Life 2 mods

Did you know that in 2004 Valve launched Half-Life 2 [official site]? And did you know that Episode 1 followed two years later and Episode 2 a year after that? Did you know it's now been ten years and besides a mass of rumours, bad jokes and conversations with unverified sources, Gordon Freeman's elusive third Half-Life outing - be that Half-Life 3 or HL2: Episode…

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Happy Birthday! Valve Turned 20 Yesterday

Happy 20th birthday, Valve! Yesterday. Happy 20th yesterday. Sorry, I only just saw the Facebook notification. On August 24th, 1996, ex-Microsoft employees Gabe Newell and Mike Harrington made a beautiful baby who was mighty eye-opening. In the dreamy game of "What if...?" one curious hypothetical is: what if Valve never existed? There can't be many companies who've had nearly as much impact. Steam (eventually) revolutionised…

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Feature: Pretty pictures

10 Games Run Through The Prisma Photo Filter App

You might have noticed all your friends' avatars and profile pictures turning into comic book drawings or impressionistic paintings over the last few weeks. That's because of Prisma, a photo editing app for iOS and Android that let's you apply a couple of dozen filters to images you feed it. The app goes further than simply messing with the hue like Instagram does, using a…

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Feature: AKA why you like Half-Life 2

Why Are Most Videogame Characters Total Dicks?

I've just finished Mirror's Edge Catalyst, a first-person parkour game about Faith Connors and a scrappy band of outlaw runners and hackers who deliver secret packages under the noses of an oppressive corporate government. By rights you should root for these underdogs. If only they weren't all dicks.

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Have You Played… Half-Life: Blue Shift?

Have You Played? is an endless stream of game retrospectives. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time. Gearbox's Barney-starring add-on is the black sheep of the Half-Life family, although at the time I never encountered any reason why that should be the case. My teenage tastes were perhaps less discerning then, but more importantly any return to Black Mesa was…

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3 years ago

Prospekt: Half-Life Opposing Force Fan Sequel Released

A fan-made, semi-official follow-up to Opposing Force, the Half-Life expansion Gearbox made, is now out. Prospekt [official site] continues telling Half-Life-y events from the perspective of marine Adrian Shephard, who's still chasing after Gordon Freeman. This time he's helping Gordo, though, causing trouble out of sight for the Combine during HL2's Nova Prospekt section and onwards. It's the work of fan Richard Seabrook, and Valve…

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Feature: Archipelagos and Sentinels

A Few Of My Favourite Monsters

We live in complex times. When I was a youngster, it was perfectly reasonable to buy a game simply because it had more monsters than the other games. Playing through shooters, RPGs and platformers alike, I'd be tempted to give up when I reached the point where no new enemy types were appearing. The very idea of a game with only one type of enemy,…

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Huh! A Valve-Approved Half-Life: Opposing Force Sequel

While you wait for Half-Life 3, your skin will weather and crumble and you'll become so aware of how much time you've wasted praying for a sequel to a shooting game that you'll suffer an existential crisis and move to the Himalayas to spend your days building windfarms out of sheep skeletons. Before that happens, you might get to play Prospekt [official site], a fan-made…

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Feature:

Have You Played… Half-Life 2?

Have You Played? is an endless stream of game recommendations. One a day, every day of the year, perhaps for all time. Okay, now we're nearly 300 deep into these recommendations we're clearly getting a little obscure, a little desperate, but it's still possible that a few people will have played this oddity. Half-Life 2 came out in 2004, but as there's been no Half-Life…

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Machinimagic: Valve Announce Saxxy Award Winners

"Laughter is the best medicine," say people who are about to discover laughter actually makes a broken nose worse. Laughter's pretty okay, though, as are other emotions - and creative mediums can help stimulate them. Valve have rolled out the red carpet (it smells rusty?) for the year's finest Source Filmmaker machinima, little films mostly starring Valve characters, declaring which are the bestest best so…

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Feature: Episodic

The Last Eight Years Of Gordon Freeman’s Unpublished Diaries – RPS Exclusive

An envelope arrived in the post this morning. Thick, stuffed with books. Diaries, in fact. Someone has sent me Gordon Freeman's diaries from the last eight years. I don't really know what to do about this. I mean, this is obviously big news, but this is also someone's private life. But what if it was Gordon himself who sent them? What if he wants the...…

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