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Wednesday, April 05, 2006

I May Need A Cigarette And I Don't Even Smoke

Half Life 2 logoWhy? Because I just finished Half Life 2.

Yeah I'm behind the curve, fuckin' sue me, we ain't all millionaires, some of us actually have to scrimp and save to shell out $50+ for a video game, but it was worth every goddam penny and that’s more than I can say about most of the movies I've seen in the past year. Usually, when a sequel comes out you expect it to be a cheap knock off of the original, or more akin to bonus levels. Not here. Valve did something amazing, something unique, something I have yet to see done in this field: they got it right.

Everything about HL2 is right. The graphics are beyond good, even on lower video card settings. The incidental music is ideally atmospheric. The "boo" factor is right on the nose (fuckin' headcrabs! SKREEEEEE!) Even the ending was rock solid even though some may argue it was a cop out with no real resolution to the whole Combine thing. Not me, I like it when the guy writing the story has the balls to say, "No, we're not going to lay it out on the table for you."

There is no spoon-feeding to be found in HL2, just jaw dropping involvement from the get-go. Very few games can be described as "immersive", but HL2 is one of them. No, it IS the definition of them! The bar is now set very, VERY high.

If you've read my past post Matt's Law of Good Gaming you can see HL2 follow the formula perfectly. The running around and shooting people part is both challenging and fun, but not so much as to become monotonous or aggravating. The puzzles are well thought out, yet simple enough not to bog down the player. The Vehicle stuff is phenomenal and the story? Fuck, if half the hacks in Hollywood could write stories this enthralling, this blog would be a barren wasteland.

I only have one minor criticism and it's one I've had since the original Half Life - Why does Gordon Freeman kick so much ass? Even within the game, Breen comments to his lackeys that Freeman is just a scientist, not some mythical figure. I never knew physicists spent so much of their off-time at the rifle range...

If you haven't played HL2 yet, you're missing out. Sell blood if you have to, you need to play this game.

Well? GO!

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2 Comments:

  • welcome to 2005... oh wait, it's 2006. wtf is with that... you work in the games industry and have not played HL2? come on zain get with the program.

    By Blogger Sherpa, at Thu Apr 20, 11:40:00 PM  

  • #1 I'm not Zain
    #2 I'm poor
    #3 I haven't worked in the video game industry in over three years.

    READ BETTER!!!

    By Blogger CapnG, at Sun Apr 23, 08:48:00 PM  

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