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Author Topic: Half-Life 2 Impressions (Possible Spoilers)  (Read 31058 times)
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« Reply #280 on: November 18, 2004, 04:44:12 PM »

The manhacks are just plain fun.  I love the sparks from them scaping the walls.  I haven't found a good strategy besides just wailing on them with the crowbar.

And I love the artillery right before the swamp levels and I had a big grin when I saw what emerged from the artillery shells.  That was priceless.
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« Reply #281 on: November 18, 2004, 04:53:04 PM »

Quote from: "jonsauce"
Quote
The first couple of hours are solid, with high production values, but nothing too crazy good. And then you get the gravity gun and go into Ravenholm. And oh boy, it gets neat.


And the last couple of hours are as solid or more.  I just finished the game and it was AWESOME!  I didn't go into it expecting it to be revolutionary, I just wanted a good game.  It far surpassed my expectations all the way through.  I am going to go start it all over again now!

This is now my all time favorite game.  Mafia just got bumped to number 2 and Deus Ex just dropped to three.

Finished it last night myself and yes the whole ending level is sheer joy.  How about those "tram rides". smile

s
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« Reply #282 on: November 18, 2004, 04:56:39 PM »

Quote from: "jztemple"
In fact, after installing and playing HL2 for an hour last night, I sighed, closed it down, and went back to GTASA on the PS2. Sure, I'll continue with HL2 and finish it up sometime, but I think only in increments of an hour at a time. Any more than that and I start to burn out on it... kill someone, run, solve puzzle, kill someone, run, solve puzzle...  :wink:

What's funny, is that I have the exact opposite opinion from you.  I got GTASA and felt it was "more of the same" from the previous GTA games.  I haven't played it more than the 3 hours on the day I got it.  Completely underwhelmed.  Half Life 2, I can't stop playing.  biggrin
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« Reply #283 on: November 18, 2004, 04:57:25 PM »

Quote from: "Vesper"
Quote from: "jztemple"
In fact, after installing and playing HL2 for an hour last night, I sighed, closed it down, and went back to GTASA on the PS2. Sure, I'll continue with HL2 and finish it up sometime, but I think only in increments of an hour at a time. Any more than that and I start to burn out on it... kill someone, run, solve puzzle, kill someone, run, solve puzzle...  :wink:

What's funny, is that I have the exact opposite opinion from you.  I got GTASA and felt it was "more of the same" from the previous GTA games.  I haven't played it more than the 3 hours on the day I got it.  Completely underwhelmed.  Half Life 2, I can't stop playing.  biggrin

Completely agree.

s
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« Reply #284 on: November 18, 2004, 05:22:24 PM »

Quote from: "Eco-Logic"
I think HL 2 is an evolution for the genre.  I know I sure as hell haven't played anything like it before.  It's already in my top 3 favorite games of all time and I just got past the air boat section.  The game is a freaking masterpiece.  I've had so many memorable moments already, and jumped out of my seat a couple times as well, and I'm not even to the creepy part yet.  

The graphics are better than anything else, the gameplay is better tha anything else, the environment is better than anything else, the game is on a whole new level and has raised the bar, again.


I just don't see it.  I like the game and all but I don't see what evolution it has.

Things that most FPS have by now and if HL2 does:

Limited inventory more representaive of real life? - no
Ability of lean around corners? - no  
Abiltity to drive vechicles? - yes
Abiltity to manipulate object? -yes


Really HL2 fails to have what are pretty much standard things in FPS anymore.
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« Reply #285 on: November 18, 2004, 05:39:15 PM »

Quote from: "farley2k"
Quote from: "Eco-Logic"
I think HL 2 is an evolution for the genre.  I know I sure as hell haven't played anything like it before.  It's already in my top 3 favorite games of all time and I just got past the air boat section.  The game is a freaking masterpiece.  I've had so many memorable moments already, and jumped out of my seat a couple times as well, and I'm not even to the creepy part yet.  

The graphics are better than anything else, the gameplay is better tha anything else, the environment is better than anything else, the game is on a whole new level and has raised the bar, again.


I just don't see it.  I like the game and all but I don't see what evolution it has.

Things that most FPS have by now and if HL2 does:

Limited inventory more representaive of real life? - no
Ability of lean around corners? - no  
Abiltity to drive vechicles? - yes
Abiltity to manipulate object? -yes


Really HL2 fails to have what are pretty much standard things in FPS anymore.


Just because a game doesn't have something, doesn't mean it's inferior. When I play HL2, I don't think "Man, if I could only look around corners." The game isn't designed to need it, and it doesn't suffer because it doesn't use it.
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« Reply #286 on: November 18, 2004, 05:45:13 PM »

Quote from: "SpaceLord"

Just because a game doesn't have something, doesn't mean it's inferior. When I play HL2, I don't think "Man, if I could only look around corners." The game isn't designed to need it, and it doesn't suffer because it doesn't use it.


I actually wish I could look around corners. I might suffer just a little bit.

Nevertheless, I <3 HL2!
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« Reply #287 on: November 18, 2004, 06:14:20 PM »

From GameRankings.com:
Quote
On 11/16 the PC received a new game from VU Games titled Half-Life 2.  Since then 17 sites and magazines have reviewed it including Game Informer, Computer & Video Games UK, Worth Playing and Eurogamer.  Together their reviews have resulted in an average ratio of 97.3%.  That ratio has resulted in this title becoming the 2nd best game of all time and the 1st best game on the PC.

biggrin

Halo 2 has an average score of 95.5.
Half-Life 1 has an average score of 94.6

Thus far, GameSpot's 9.2 is the lowest review.
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« Reply #288 on: November 18, 2004, 06:33:29 PM »

Quote from: "gameoverman"
Maybe something showing the facial movements everyone is talking about. Maybe a brief example of something interesting the physics make possible. Thanks again.


got the perfect scene for this then, although it could be a bit spoilerish in terms of storytelling, as much of the game's plot bits are told in the npc interactions.  i'll take a few attempts at getting good interactions without blowing anything though.  

as for the physics integration, there's a few scenes where it gels pretty perfectly.  

if it wasn't for work, i could get to it sooner than later.
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« Reply #289 on: November 18, 2004, 06:36:53 PM »

I just beat the game and realized something that was in the previews but not in the game..

SPOILERS for what's NOT in there
.
.
.
.
.
remember that giant watery tentacle that speared a soldier? Nothing remotely like that in the game. Not that it matters, I just found it strange. Also no icebreaker ship, which was supposed to be in the beginning of the old version, and I saw leaked shots of it way back when. And I echo the ones who say the final levels are brilliant and the ending great.
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« Reply #290 on: November 18, 2004, 06:53:59 PM »

I would make a video and upload it, but Caine has already offered to and I don't want to but in.  Plus his video is probably better than the one I would do smile
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« Reply #291 on: November 18, 2004, 06:54:51 PM »

Quote from: "Vesper"
Quote from: "jztemple"
In fact, after installing and playing HL2 for an hour last night, I sighed, closed it down, and went back to GTASA on the PS2. Sure, I'll continue with HL2 and finish it up sometime, but I think only in increments of an hour at a time. Any more than that and I start to burn out on it... kill someone, run, solve puzzle, kill someone, run, solve puzzle...  :wink:

What's funny, is that I have the exact opposite opinion from you.  I got GTASA and felt it was "more of the same" from the previous GTA games.  I haven't played it more than the 3 hours on the day I got it.  Completely underwhelmed.  Half Life 2, I can't stop playing.  biggrin


Same here. In fact, after fiddling around with GTA-SA for a few hours, I shelved it for days, then finally traded it for Ratchet & Clank UYA.  I don't regret it.

It's odd how some people can see HL2 as "just another FPS" though. That take on it just boggles my mind.

A 97.3 avg review score speaks volumes, though.

I guess it's just a 'different strokes for different folks' kind of thing. I don't begrudge anyone who claims that GTA-SA is sheer greatness, same if you feel that way about Doom 3. If that floats your boat, cool.

I'm only saying that HL2 has features that are undeniably amazing, and even revolutionary. The physics system for starters.
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« Reply #292 on: November 18, 2004, 07:02:44 PM »

On the other hand, I can't see why most people think this game is the second coming.  I feel pretty let down.  

The whole scenario and story of the first one was amazing.  I loved the Black Mesa backdrop.  The whole what's going to happen next.  The great scripted sequences.  Marines coming to rescue you...wait NO, coming to kill you!  It was all great.

So far HL2 has not had any of that.  City 17 does nothing for me.  Sure it looks nice, but so what?  

Where are the cool scenes?  In the first HL, there was a scene right after the accident where you watched a laser tear through a room and cut through a dead scientist on the floor.  That just blew me away.  I haven't seen anything in HL2 (so far) to give me that feeling.

Maybe I got caught up in the hype on this one.  I have a feeling that if this game wasn't titled Half-Life, then it would just get lost in the shuffle of FPSs.

Just my opinion though, here's to hoping that I like it as I progress.

P.S.  Water Hazard....waaaay too long of a level.  I'd rather be on foot.
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« Reply #293 on: November 18, 2004, 07:18:47 PM »

Quote
I have a feeling that if this game wasn't titled Half-Life, then it would just get lost in the shuffle of FPSs.


I don't feel like that at all.  No matter what name this game was under I would have loved it just as much.  

Maybe I love it so much because I had zero expectations for it.  I stayed away from all previews and from the E3 videos.  I heard they were great, but I didn't know anything else about them.  

If you think it is the same old FPS gameplay then maybe you are playing it like the same old FPS.  Try some stuff you couldn't do in those and you might be amazed.  I'd give some ideas but I don't want to put any spoilers in.

I did love the airboat level though.  Instead of wishing I was on foot I was loving every second of it.
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« Reply #294 on: November 18, 2004, 07:18:53 PM »

Quote

Where are the cool scenes? In the first HL, there was a scene right after the accident where you watched a laser tear through a room and cut through a dead scientist on the floor. That just blew me away. I haven't seen anything in HL2 (so far) to give me that feeling.

Are you serious?!?

LOL Man, you need to look around the maps a little more. smile

s
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« Reply #295 on: November 18, 2004, 07:29:28 PM »

Quote
Where are the cool scenes? In the first HL, there was a scene right after the accident where you watched a laser tear through a room and cut through a dead scientist on the floor. That just blew me away. I haven't seen anything in HL2 (so far) to give me that feeling.


Oh man maybe it just comes down to opinions, HL2 is full of them. Spoiler but anyone who's played the game has already passed this point.

When your running from the guards on the roof top, bullets are whizzing by and your trying your best to stay few steps ahead of them, then you see it your salvation an open window, in you dive and quickly look for an exit and you see it down the stairs and a few doors. Hah dumb guards they'll never catch me. The thought only lasts a second as guards come pouring through both doors. So you turn around to dart back up the stairs. Only the stairs give out and your faced with your doom already. It can't end like this as your vision blurs then fades out.

I mean if thats not a moment then I don't know what is.

Ascendent
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« Reply #296 on: November 18, 2004, 07:38:55 PM »

Quote from: "leo8877"
P.S. Water Hazard....waaaay too long of a level. I'd rather be on foot.


Man, I can't believe you ask where the cool scenes are and then complain about Water Hazard which was chock full of them.  I love that level with all my heart.  

Quote from: "BigRedCat"
remember that giant watery tentacle that speared a soldier? Nothing remotely like that in the game. Not that it matters, I just found it strange. Also no icebreaker ship, which was supposed to be in the beginning of the old version, and I saw leaked shots of it way back when. And I echo the ones who say the final levels are brilliant and the ending great.


In the excerpt of the Raising the Bar book that the Collector's edition comes with they mention they could never get the water tentacle AI working right so that it was fun for the player to fight so it was removed from the final game.  The Icebreaker Ship, which was to be the opening of the game, was removed for pacing reasons according to the Behind the Game piece on Gamespot.
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« Reply #297 on: November 18, 2004, 07:43:39 PM »

Quote from: "SpaceLord"


Just because a game doesn't have something, doesn't mean it's inferior. When I play HL2, I don't think "Man, if I could only look around corners." The game isn't designed to need it, and it doesn't suffer because it doesn't use it.


Very true but I do think that such a game shouldn't be call "revolutionary".


HL2 is a great FPS but it doesn't expand the genre in any way.   And in some ways (like those I mentioned) it is actually a step back in the genre.

Another way it is really, really a step back is the linearity.  I am up to the point with the boat and so far it has been virutually impossible to get lost or confused becuase there is only one way to go anywhere.  Sure you can kill things in different ways but there is only one path through each of the levels.  

I find that kind of gameplay alright but again it doesn't make the game "revolutionary"
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« Reply #298 on: November 18, 2004, 07:49:35 PM »

Farley, how about the first realistic physics system? Someone already said, and I agree, that this is the first game where things don't feel like styrofoam. They have weight, and the move realisticially. Did they program Newton's 4 equations of motion in? biggrin
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« Reply #299 on: November 18, 2004, 07:49:47 PM »

Quote
HL2 is a great FPS but it doesn't expand the genre in any way.


I agree. Other than a few technological steps, it's a plain jane shooter in the end...granted it's a highly polished one that I'm thoroughly enjoying, but there's really nothing 'revolutionary' or even 'evolutionary' in regards to gameplay.
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« Reply #300 on: November 18, 2004, 08:08:20 PM »

Here is a testament to HL2 gameplay in my opinion:

http://www.halflife2.net/forums/showthread.php?t=52679


I did something like this in the canals.  I never saw the valve to raise the water in the puzzle where you swim through a tunnel and then hop across on the wire rollers.  I instead built up some barrels to climb into the tunnel and onto the other side.  I spend 15+ minutes trying to figure out what to do then until I looked through the grating and saw the valve smile
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« Reply #301 on: November 18, 2004, 08:11:54 PM »

Quote from: "farley2k"


Very true but I do think that such a game shouldn't be call "revolutionary".


HL2 is a great FPS but it doesn't expand the genre in any way.   And in some ways (like those I mentioned) it is actually a step back in the genre.


Then you havn't gotten the gravity gun yet, and or havn't really tried to use it yet. There has been nothing ever in any game before that is similar to that gameplay mechanic. That right there qualifies as innovative. Stop think about just blasting the enemies as fast as you can and moving on(This isn't Serious Sam or Painkiller). I suspect there are people missing out on allot of potentially cool things because they think its just move and shoot. Your loss if this is how you think.

Quote
Another way it is really, really a step back is the linearity.  I am up to the point with the boat and so far it has been virutually impossible to get lost or confused becuase there is only one way to go anywhere.  Sure you can kill things in different ways but there is only one path through each of the levels.


Why do people complain about linearity in a FPS? There all linear. The only one ever to maybe be able to say its not is Farcry in its outdoor areas. Otherwise this is a complaint you would have for any FPS out there. And whats bad about linear. There are tons of great games like side-scrolling stuff that are linear but fun. Wether a game is linear or not doesn't mean it isn't good.
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« Reply #302 on: November 18, 2004, 08:18:29 PM »

I agree Jumangi
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« Reply #303 on: November 18, 2004, 08:21:04 PM »

Quote from: "jonsauce"
I would make a video and upload it, but Caine has already offered to and I don't want to but in.  Plus his video is probably better than the one I would do smile


if you have made it past ravenholm (i haven't had the time yet) then take a shot.  it makes it all the better for those interested in watching different gameplay footage.

and yes, i am trying to do this while at work.  hiding my hl2 running in the background and running with small headphones to monitor the sound.  i have found a decent size to record at, but what is the limit for size on the site?  to get the size significantly lower is possible, but i don't think people want to watch a postage stamp video  smile
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« Reply #304 on: November 18, 2004, 08:31:29 PM »

Quote
Wether a game is linear or not doesn't mean it isn't good.


It seems that every review I read the reviewer complains about the game being to linear.  I have never had a problem myself with this and I'm glad I am not the only one.

Edited to add:  The reviews I am talking about are about nearly ALL games, not just HL2.

Its great and all when a game has a dynamic campaign and all (Such as the IL2 titles) but I really don't mind if when I beat the game the first time I have seen what I was meant to see.
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« Reply #305 on: November 18, 2004, 08:45:07 PM »

Quote from: "jonsauce"
Quote
Wether a game is linear or not doesn't mean it isn't good.


It seems that every review I read the reviewer complains about the game being to linear.  I have never had a problem myself with this and I'm glad I am not the only one.

Edited to add:  The reviews I am talking about are about nearly ALL games, not just HL2.

Its great and all when a game has a dynamic campaign and all (Such as the IL2 titles) but I really don't mind if when I beat the game the first time I have seen what I was meant to see.


People who don't design games have no idea what they're asking for. Do we really want a canal section with six canals and 15 different bunkers and no clues as to what direction to go? Do we really want a city where every door can be opened and there's either no real difference in any of them or they all lead you to the place you need to go? There would be so many complaints about aimless searching for the next trigger it would be insane.

Those who complain should play the later HL2 levels where you traverse city blocks full of destruction or explore the whole freaking coastline.

Oooh, we can look forward to STALKER which I guarandamntee you will not be what it's cracked up to be. Some games like Morrowind allow you to go anywhere....that's right, they also have no drive and no focus. There's room in gaming for both types.
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« Reply #306 on: November 18, 2004, 08:46:11 PM »

There's no denying that H2 is linear, but I look at what they did with that fact.  It's linear, but with that they put you in the game like no other game has before.  It's the closest I have ever felt to being in a movie in any game I have ever played.

The way the cutscenes are done really adds to this.  You are IN the cutscenes rather than just watching them.  Big distinction that a lot of developers still haven't figured out.

s
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« Reply #307 on: November 18, 2004, 08:47:27 PM »

Quote
if you have made it past ravenholm (i haven't had the time yet) then take a shot. it makes it all the better for those interested in watching different gameplay footage.


Alright, I'll put together a little video showing some stuff.  I promise to leave out most dialog so that I don't spoil anything.

I'll show a bit of the gravity gun in action only because that was in the E3 vids.
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« Reply #308 on: November 18, 2004, 08:50:31 PM »

Give me a tightly focused title anyday.  I don't care if it's linear.  Why is this suddenly the Holy Grail of game design?

O NOS U CAN ONLY GO ON3 WAY FORWARD!1!!!1!! WTF I WANT A GM3 2 B WIED OPAN AND NONLIENAR BABY!1111! LOL
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« Reply #309 on: November 18, 2004, 08:51:28 PM »

Quote from: "jonsauce"
Quote
if you have made it past ravenholm (i haven't had the time yet) then take a shot. it makes it all the better for those interested in watching different gameplay footage.


Alright, I'll put together a little video showing some stuff.  I promise to leave out most dialog so that I don't spoil anything.

I'll show a bit of the gravity gun in action only because that was in the E3 vids.

Don't know if you've beaten the game or not yet, but if you have be sure to get some shots of what the gravity gun can do in the later levels. smile

s
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And when he had failed to find these boons in things whose laws are known and measurable, they told him he lacked imagination, and was immature because he preferred dream-illusions to the illusions of our physical creation
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« Reply #310 on: November 18, 2004, 08:53:41 PM »

Wow... I just saw a screenshot and had a thought.

Go back a few years in your memory, to whatever the last screenshots you saw of TF2 were (God, when was that?  '98?  '99?  I'm getting old...).   Now, when you get far enough in the game, look at your squadmates.  The red cross on white armband... the rocket launcher guys... the ruined-city looking setting... looking familiar?

Conclusion, with the support of absolutely no evidence but a great gut feeling:  TF2 or TFC:S is coming after all, and it's set in City 17-style environments, with HL2-style characters.  The infrastructure is there, the physics are there... hell, imagine the Engineer class with HL2-style sentries, a gravity gun, and full-on demolition charges, in a modernized 2Forts, tossing explosive barrels back and forth between bases, snipers with those cool-looking blue beams, heavy gunners with a mobile Combine cannon, scouts (concussion grenades + ragdoll physics = fun), soldiers lobbing rockets back and forth...

I'm not even going to mention the other class I want to see, because I'd drool on the keyboard too much.  Mmm, HL-2 quality flames...
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« Reply #311 on: November 18, 2004, 08:57:36 PM »

Quote from: "Clanwolfer"
Wow... I just saw a screenshot and had a thought.

Go back a few years in your memory, to whatever the last screenshots you saw of TF2 were (God, when was that?  '98?  '99?  I'm getting old...).   Now, when you get far enough in the game, look at your squadmates.  The red cross on white armband... the rocket launcher guys... the ruined-city looking setting... looking familiar?

Conclusion, with the support of absolutely no evidence but a great gut feeling:  TF2 or TFC:S is coming after all, and it's set in City 17-style environments, with HL2-style characters.  The infrastructure is there, the physics are there... hell, imagine the Engineer class with HL2-style sentries, a gravity gun, and full-on demolition charges, in a modernized 2Forts, tossing explosive barrels back and forth between bases, snipers with those cool-looking blue beams, heavy gunners with a mobile Combine cannon, scouts (concussion grenades + ragdoll physics = fun), soldiers lobbing rockets back and forth...

I'm not even going to mention the other class I want to see, because I'd drool on the keyboard too much.  Mmm, HL-2 quality flames...


Frick ya!

Been a while since TF for me...what's the name of the map with the two castles facing each other? With a moat between, and a back way in that involves running across some narrow boards? And I don't mean 2fort.  :?
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Sepiche
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« Reply #312 on: November 18, 2004, 09:25:57 PM »

That would make sense.  The game gives a great backdrop for some cool battles.

Call me when I can pilot one of those walkers though. smile

s
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« Reply #313 on: November 18, 2004, 09:27:21 PM »

im going to work on a little video tonight.   maybe 4 minutes of gameplay edited to look like absolute mayhem...or crap. you decide.
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« Reply #314 on: November 18, 2004, 09:28:29 PM »

I have a few clips, I am just compressing them now and putting them together.  My video will suck probably but it'll give a few gameplay clips that will make you buy HL2 or even buy the internet if you don't have it smile
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Programmer
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« Reply #315 on: November 18, 2004, 09:31:35 PM »

Best gaming experience ever for me so far. I hesitate to even call it a "game" - it's more than that. It's interactive fiction (I'm sure there's a better term than that), and a real work of art.

In terms of technology and basic gameplay mechanics, no, it's not revolutionary. All the basic pieces have been done before to some degree in other games. But the way everything comes together is revolutionary, at least for me. This game connects on an emotional level almost continuously. The environment and characters are so well conceived and executed that it's not hard to believe you're really in another world. Other games have done this for me, but not for hours at a time, and not so deeply that I found myself laughing out loud at times at the sheer brilliance of it all.

When I was young and lost in the worlds of Ultima IV on my Apple II over 20 years ago, this is what I dreamed might, if I was really lucky, be possible one day. Well, that day has come.

As you can tell, I like Half-Life 2 a lot biggrin
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« Reply #316 on: November 18, 2004, 09:32:45 PM »

Quote from: "Clanwolfer"

Conclusion, with the support of absolutely no evidence but a great gut feeling:  TF2 or TFC:S is coming after all, and it's set in City 17-style environments, with HL2-style characters.....


Gabe mentioned in the Gamespot article that TF2 was still on track for release.  Valve has enough money.  Heck, Gabe has enough money to easily finish it.  But more than likely, you would be correct because I'm sure that they would probably want to use the same resources as HL2 to say on development time.
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« Reply #317 on: November 18, 2004, 09:36:52 PM »

As much as I want TF2 I want HL3 more. So hopefully TF2 will be a surprise that comes soon and doesn't slow addon development.
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SpaceLord
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« Reply #318 on: November 18, 2004, 09:43:51 PM »

Quote from: "BigRedCat"
As much as I want TF2 I want HL3 more. So hopefully TF2 will be a surprise that comes soon and doesn't slow addon development.


Here's a question. Can anyone else make TF2 using the upcoming SDK? Valve seems very fan-friendly, maybe they won't mind if someone cranks out an un-official version.
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Sepiche
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« Reply #319 on: November 18, 2004, 09:44:50 PM »

Quote from: "Programmer"
Best gaming experience ever for me so far. I hesitate to even call it a "game" - it's more than that. It's interactive fiction (I'm sure there's a better term than that), and a real work of art.

In terms of technology and basic gameplay mechanics, no, it's not revolutionary. All the basic pieces have been done before to some degree in other games. But the way everything comes together is revolutionary, at least for me. This game connects on an emotional level almost continuously. The environment and characters are so well conceived and executed that it's not hard to believe you're really in another world. Other games have done this for me, but not for hours at a time, and not so deeply that I found myself laughing out loud at times at the sheer brilliance of it all.

When I was young and lost in the worlds of Ultima IV on my Apple II over 20 years ago, this is what I dreamed might, if I was really lucky, be possible one day. Well, that day has come.

As you can tell, I like Half-Life 2 a lot biggrin

Welcome aboard and well said. smile

I agree 100%.  It's the fact that this is something that comes very close to being an interactive movie that makes it so amazing.

s
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