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HL2 Anyone got it? First impressions?

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  • oXYnary
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    oXYnary polycounter lvl 15
    I did defrag my HD.. In fact first thing I did.. I guesss my only choice is to turn down my res or my sound quality.

    FIRST FLAME!

    Same one I had with the original game. Sometimes you have to do things in a particular order which I end up not doing hence I have to go back like 5 levels.

    Which just happened. I got the hydro vehicle. I get through a bunch of guys shooting at me. Get to the next load point. Then I decide to go back to shoot them and see if I can pick up some dropped goodies. LEave the hydro near the save point. Go back to this previous load point on foot. (I still see the vehicle sitting for me on the "other side" of the load point)

    Shoot em up. Then go back to that new point.. As soon as it finishes loading. low and behold the vehicle disappears! So now I try to get through the rest of the canal system on foot. I get past the canal gate.. Hell, I even shot down two helicopters. Managed to squeeze past radioactive water areas by hugging the walls.

    Only to come to a wide open area with no cover where a helicopter shoots me dead right away.

    Soooo..... My only recourse at this point is to go back BEFORE I started the canal system.. Thats about 3 hours back. (I also found some weird texture errors on foot in the canal with objects that should be behind alpha maps showing in front of).

    Either I have really wacky playing methods, or their beta testers think too much in the box.
  • killingpeople
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    killingpeople polycounter lvl 14
    frusterated yet undertanding, once i got around the progress bar and steam network oversaturation madness, i was not let down. half-life 2 is my kind of game! thanks to the people that made it possible! it's games like these that inspire me to be apart of this industry. a good year.
  • Mojo2k
    verm, i don't agree with your analogy, because if i would have went to the game store and it was sold out i would have been "oh damn come back another day" to adjust your analogy, it would have been like going to star wars ep 1, on opening day, them selling you a ticket, then getting into your theater at the time of showing, and having to wait 8 hours for your movie to start.

    I would have had no problem with the game being sold out. Arshleven came to work today and said it took him 9 hours to get thru the steam issues, and i know Rube was having the same issues last nite in #md

    The game is incredibly fun so far, tho i thought it took to much runing around to actualy get to the actual game play part where you get a gun, they could have used this time to tell us exactly what is up with this city, and the combine

    http://www.gucomics.com/archives/view.php?cdate=20041117 this is kinda how i feel about the thing

  • avalean
    never been so excited while playing a game since Original Half Life
  • rawkstar
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    rawkstar polycounter lvl 16
    oh yeah. great game. it was a bit slow starting up, and the loading times are a bit over abundant, but other than that its really good, the engine and the art are just totally awesome. Now I want to check out Vampire Bloodlines...
  • Mark Dygert
    "What about those people with out a internet connection"

    If Atari was Valve the answer would be, tough tacos, we have your cash and you have an opened box. Work it out with the store.

    At first I found the idea a bit extreme, but then after mulling it over. Really it is no different than having a CD key to play online. It gets checked by a server every time you play, not just once, every time. Once I realized that little fact, I figured I didn't have anything to freak out about. besides they are just making sure people pay for what they should be paying for. It's not OK to steal cars just because other people do it, and the same goes for software.

    I support it this idea, besides it is hardly new. Just about anything that forces poeple to pay for what they play is ok in my book. I think of it this way, what if you built dog houses for a living. Every day you work hard to build 5 dog houses and at the end of the day you leave them out front of your house and go to bed. When you get up 4 of them are gone and you can now only sell one dog house. OF course this pisses you off so you build a razor wire fence, get a guard dog. The only people that should be worried about the fence and the dog are the dirty theiven bastards that steal the 4 dog houses each night.

    Don't get mad when you go to buy a dog house that there is razor wire and a guard dog. If people didn't steal the dog houses it wouldn't be there.

    As for Mojos woes, that really sucks man. If you bought it the only wait you should have is to download it and isntall. After that there should be no wait. If there is, it is a failure on thier part. Make all the excuses you want why it doesn't work, but they are just that excuses for a problem that should not exsist.

    I hope you got in, and are playing...
  • sledgy
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    sledgy polycounter lvl 13
    edit - whoops just saw Vig's post and he already made this point.
    IMO, if you don't like that you have to authenticate your copy of a game you purchased, why not try going after the root of the problem: people that steal it.

    Here are the top excuses I've seen from people that steal games:

    "It costs too much!" You damned game developers are just like the railroad barons out to get rich on the backs of us po' sick folk!

    If you're in a store and you don't have enough money to buy something, should you just steal it anyway?


    This game is too lame to be asking $49.99 for!

    If you think something is not worth the full price asked, should you just steal it to teach them a lesson? If it's so lame then WTF are you stealing it?


    "Because I Can."

    Well, you're a dick then.

    I see a whole lot of complaining about games being high priced and whining about CD keys/authentication/active piracy prevention but I sure don't see anyone going after the root problem. If you have a personal problem with authenticating your game or otherwise proving that you purchased it, don't get mad at the developers - I'm sure they don't like having to spend all that extra money on antitheft - blame the thieves.

    When "/\/\[email protected]" says "lol i just hax0rz3d3d HL2", instead of saying "hAw HaW!", say "You're a chode."

  • adam
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    adam polycounter lvl 15
    I got caught trying to do "the matrix"...
    de_piranesi0001.jpg

    Pretty spec and bump!
    de_chateau0000.jpg
  • Ryno
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    Ryno polycounter lvl 15
    [ QUOTE ]
    Either I have really wacky playing methods, or their beta testers think too much in the box.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    No Oxy! You have wacky playing methods?! How totally out of character!

    I totally understand this point though, as I tend to go back into areas that I've already cleared so that I can safely investigate environments, and take a look at the art without worrying about bad guys. It's quite frustrating when stuff just disappears on you.
  • oXYnary
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    oXYnary polycounter lvl 15
    On the sound issue, it isnt video related. In fact its one of the biggest threads over at halflife2.net

    http://www.halflife2.net/forums/showthread.php?t=51480&page=3&pp=15
  • TomDunne
    Audigy2 cards are crap, in my opinion. I have one and it also caused problems with Doom3. The quantity of conflicts I've seen reported by gamers with this card are amazing. I have no idea what the hell Creative's done to make the card so difficult to build for, but the quality of audio I get hasn't been nearly worth what the card cost me.
  • oXYnary
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    oXYnary polycounter lvl 15
    If you look through that thread verm.. Its not only Audigy, It seems to be across the board.

    Seems that a programer from Valve is even on a penny arcade forum trying to find the common link with all these systems.
  • JBoskma
    I bought it today, played it today and just stopped playing for a while now. I love the waterspeedscooter part, and that's about where I quit. I love the parts where the techno music beat kicks in; you're alone with your loyal machine gun, nothing to do but to slaughter your enemies. This game kicks ass, back to city 17
  • malcolm
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    malcolm Polycount Sponsor
    Gauss, maybe you can use your art skills to make an instruction booklet and cardboard box for yourself as well. I haven't picked up my copy yet I thought EB would phone when it came out but apparently they don't.
  • gauss
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    gauss polycounter lvl 12
    oxy, i'm sorry your boat disappeared on you, but you honestly should have known better. the second your boat disappeared in the middle of an obviously 'built for airboat' sequence, you should have reloaded and not try to play further on foot. it's beyond me why you'd want to continue on foot anyway laugh.gif
  • adam
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    adam polycounter lvl 15
    gauss/oxy: There was a moment on the airboat ride that I thought I had to get out. So I got out and continued on foot only to thing, "WTF am I doing? This is taking forever. I'm going back for the boat. Dammit!"

    Also, oxy, you should check out some HL2 sites for console commands. I'm certain there's a command line to spawn an airboat so you could continue from where you left off.
  • TomDunne
    *sigh*

    Since entering the mine area, my computer locks up within five minutes of gameplay. Not just a crash, I have to reboot my computer. Every time, without fail. I don't have to tell you how much this really, really, really sucks. frown.gif
  • adam
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    adam polycounter lvl 15
    I'm quite certain* VALVe will take notice to the plathora (sp?) of complaints towards the stability of Steam - and the game - and release an update to fix the issues.

    *Certainly hoping, that is.
  • TomDunne
    What worries me is that none of the tech forums I've read really mention anyone else with the same problem. And I can't imagine why it would have happened so infrequently before but happen almost automatically now. Screen locks, the audio starts stuttering and I sob quietly into my keyboard...
  • TomDunne
    Well, I managed to get through the area by truning all the video settings down to the minimum. Must be a shader or reflection issue in the mines area that was killing my machine somehow. Back outside, everything is joy once again. Game on!
  • moose
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    moose Polycount Sponsor
    i finished it tonight (wont give anything away), but there were a few sequences that were reeeaallly chuggy, but 98% of the game ran silky at 1900x1200, and full detail.

    i got used to the sound hitches, although it was really annoying when it happened durring dialogue.

    now, MGS3, Metriod Prime 2, and through HL2 on hard! wooha!
  • gauss
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    gauss polycounter lvl 12
    finished the game tonight as well, thankfully no trouble with hitching after i defragged--and who knew my fairly generic on-board 5.1 soundcard would end up being a plus (considering all the trouble i hear some audigy cards are having) ... anyhow, so here's this bar, right, the kind of experience you expect from games these days... and then after half life 2, consider the bar raised. that's all i'm gonna say about that. laugh.gif enjoy and as moose said, now it's time to replay it on hard, far too many great details and little things that i'm sure i missed the first playthrough smile.gif
  • Downsizer
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    Downsizer polycounter lvl 14
    Hmm, i'm going to jump on the cynics wagon here. I managed to convince myself to keep my copy after that release trouble with steams servers. The game indeed took forever to install.

    This is'nt the ground breaking engine I was hoping for. Nothing about it is new. It looks like they just slapped a Giles GI lightmapper into the program. The shader use is very minimal, and the detail of some shaders has been cut. For example, I specifically remember video demos of the first encounter with the main girl and scientist guy. The bubbling orange liquid looked 10 times better in the videos.

    Everything is photosourced, even the characters faces. It add a cheap feel to the game. I have yet to see any revolutionary AI as well. There is also the issue with my FX 5900 only being recognised as a directx 8.1 hardware peice. I assume because they signed some devilish contract with ATI to fund the game. So my shader path is using Dx 8.1 instead of 9, which was the sole purpose of buying the card.

    Complaining aside, it's a good game. The cinematics are excellent, as well as the voice acting. Hardly worth $55 though. I also find it hard to believe that this is 6 years of work.
  • sledgy
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    sledgy polycounter lvl 13
    Just picked it up last night and WOW. The facial anims are pretty impressive as are the full body environment interaction. The textures are beautiful. It's rare to see something half-assed in-game. And it's Half Life! It's like putting on an old pair of shoes but instead of them being worn out, they're brand spanking new and glowing.
  • MoP
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    MoP polycounter lvl 16
    DownSizer: Hmm, IMHO the shaders are just as good as the videos they released a while back, I ran the CS:Source "Video Stress Test" which is a variation on one of the shader videos they released, and I have compared it to the video, it looks identical, if not better.
    True, the lighting engine isn't unified like Doom3's, and it does result in some weird lighting from time to time, but on the whole it works very well, and I'd much rather have a game that looks "very good" and runs at 80fps over a game that looks "very good" and runs at under 30fps on the same PC...
    I don't see how you can say the shader use is "minimal", since almost every single surface and object in the game has bump/normal/reflection and spec maps, and the use of subtle reflection and spec maps make materials ACTUALLY look like the real-world materials.
    Take a look at the mahogany chests of drawers you see from time to time, or the dark blue/black metal that the Combine outposts are made out of - they are an almost perfect representation of what metal in the real world would look like. It's definitely the best game to date for getting that hyper-real look "just right", IMHO.
    My only gripe is that the textures are often lower-resolution than they could have been, and the flame/fire effects are often poor.
    However, the shader use on glass doors, heat haze, gas leaks and other frame buffer distortion effects is used extremely well, and looks excellent.
    The water effects are without doubt the best and nicest I've ever seen in any PC (or console) game, and I'm sure many would agree with me.
    I'm thinking that you may be getting reduced shader effects because it thinks your GFX card is only DX8.1 instead of DX9 - you might find that if they patch it or some new drivers come out, then it will look more like it was supposed to seem.

    "Everything is photosourced" - yes, they went out and took some photos of Vortigons and Ant-Lions to create the textures for those aliens and creatures... cool.gif
    I think this is an example of a game that uses photosourcing very well. They combine it with painted textures and texture overlays to create a very nice look, IMHO. Max Payne 2 was entirely photosourced, and still looked very good. I guess it's just a matter of taste - it certainly doesn't make the game feel "cheap".

    The AI doesn't seem revolutionary, but it is pretty cool how the guys will go and hide and wait for backup rather than blindly running in to get mown down.

    So yeah, see if there's a fix or something you're missing to sort out the graphics card issues, and then take another look at the shaders ... the orange bubbling liquid in the tanks in the background of the Dr Kleiner/Alyx meeting scene looks identical to the videos, for me. I am running an ATI Radeon 9800 Pro on DirectX 9, though, so that's probably the difference there... Shame they didn't make it so that all cards are equal.
    NVidia pissed me off when they released the Cg shader language but wrote out support for ATI cards, so I know where you're coming from.

    MoP
  • Scott Ruggels
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    Scott Ruggels polycounter lvl 13
    Last night, I showed it to the Wednesday Night Art Boys. They were impressed. We launched HL! in Steam. It plays a lot smoother, but the assets have not been that much updated. It still played well. Counterstrike, when playing with a 1200 x 1700 at 97 FPS is really hard. Really really hard. You would see the head and shoulders of a guy over a wall, and >PAF!< you would go over backward..dead. Hi res, really makes aming really important. Looking forward to "Day of Defeat". All the guys were impressed with HL2, and the Graphic quality of the Counterstrike Upgrade (though after playing UT2K4, Counterstrike Arenas seem really small). Still enjoying it. Those that have completed it, how many hours, roughly did it take?

    Scott
  • moose
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    moose Polycount Sponsor
    scott, id say about 15-16 hours on normal. basically 2 nights of hardcore playing, and being unable to stop until you realize 'oh, i need to get up for work tomorrow. Im not actually Gordon Freeman.'

    I quickloaded and died... a lot though. I had to force load back 2 check points in the first strider fight.... they were royally kicking my ass and it auto saved over my 'safe spot.' Other than that i found most of the puzzles very intuitive, and challenging enough to be rewarding when you get past them.

    i still stand by Dog being the coolest character ever.
  • Downsizer
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    Downsizer polycounter lvl 14
    Don't get me wrong, it looks very good for what it is. It has an excellent story, and the gameplay experience is thrilling. I credit the art production more then the artists though. I'm not far into the game yet, but it seems like they only made 10 character models for the whole game, and reused them everywhere. Takes you out of the immersion a bit.

    Yes my video card is running in 8.1 due to the "graphics bug" in Nvidias FX chipsets, but it barely changes a thing from the looks of screenshot comparisons.

    The comment on the minimal shader use still stands. Every surface may have specular and bump, but whoopty do, it's nothing impressive. I expected new surface types. The glass is impressive as is the water, but it's nothing new for games. I was hoping to see some hair shaders, better fire shaders, real-time hdr like effects. Nope. HDR was advertised if I remember correctly, but was scrapped at the end. Even painkiller has more impressive light blooms. This scene is what I was specifically refering to. They removed the effect completely:

    http://media.pc.ign.com/media/492/492830/img_1715373.html

    The textures for the aliens I've seen look awfull. They look sourced from bug shells. The texture resalution bothers me the most. It's half what I would expect from this generation of game.

    I'll stop complaining, but it's no where near what valve credited it as. I just dont see how this would take 5-6 years.
  • gauss
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    gauss polycounter lvl 12
    [ QUOTE ]

    I'll stop complaining, but it's no where near what valve credited it as. I just dont see how this would take 5-6 years.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    actually, i don't think you will stop complaining. and if you can't see what took 5-6 years of careful polish to make, you're perfectly welcome to go back to playing painkiller or whatever lightbloom simulator does more for you.
  • adam
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    adam polycounter lvl 15
    Now now gauss.

    I'm with you (gauss) in hoping Downsizer will "see" the game for what it is, and how you CAN tell 5 years is what was needed to make the game. If he needs more convincing, I suggest going to Gamespot.com and checking the "Final Hours" article so he can have it put right in front of his as to why the game had taken as long as it was.

    And moose, DOG is definitly the greatest character ever.
  • Voodoo
    Anybody else think it would have been funny if Valve had let you slap the girls ass? I know why they didn't but I think it'd be hilarious.

    Anyway HL2 is everything I hoped it'd be. I'm much more found of this game then Doom3 which in my opinion was just a tech demo for ID.

    I cant sympathize with you at all Downsizer since Doom3 and Painkiller dont use many more character models then HL2 and neither of them have half the story. Just seems like you've done nothing but complain in this whole thread. The price of the game, steam, graphics, ect. What's with the vendetta against valve?

    The ending both frustrated and enticed me. Makes me wonder if we'll be seeing HL3 sometime. The puzzles were great imo. They offered a relief from combat but weren't so hard as to be detracting from the game. I also think they used the physics and interaction with world objects to accomplish missions responsibly and I agree there was a sense of accomplishment when you figured it out.

    The games ability to draw you in was great. I actually hated having a squad with me because I knew I was going to get them all killed and I actually felt bad about it. The vehicle mini games were a lot of fun and playing catch with dog was great when you just chucked what he threw on a ledge so he'd have to find something else to throw (yes I am a bastard).

    While technically the graphics aren't as advanced as Doom3 I think it doesn't really matter. Graphics absolutely do not make a game and I dont think that is what we should push for. I think we need more immersive story telling games with great artistry rather then games that are great artistic demos but lack any depth or intrigue.

    My only wish is that I could get a huge sniper rifle to have some fun from afar since some of the city enviornments really lent themselves to sniping.
  • Daz
    Chill out peoples. Isn't criticism allowed in here or something? He is also adding with his criticism that the game is 'thrilling' and that overall it looks 'very good'.

    I tend to agree with Downsizers general sentiment that the Source engine isn't *quite* the revolutionary engine we ( i at least ) was expecting. But then heck, I dont know what I was expecting. It was still gonna be made of the same 'stuff' of games before it. There is some sloppy Art in places and some surprisingly low res maps at times when it seems inappropriate too. The shader system I think is awesome now Ive seen more of it Im just a tincy wincy bit dissapointed with some of the lighting problems that come with having a different lighting engine for brush geometry than characters and objects. i.e its not a truly unified lighting engine.

    HOWEVER, theres still plenty of tech there to make a stunning looking game, and the more I get into it, the more Impressed I am by it graphically. The lighting is really nicely done and some of the baked radiosity/G.I stuff looks really fantastic ( but could have benefited from high res lightmaps at times ).

    But anyway, I whole heartedly agree Voodoo that the up to a point graphics dont maketh the game. After playing HL2, go back to playing Doom3 and it just feels like an absolutely lifeless unimmersive world in comparison.

    This game gets better and better. Playing with dog is one of those truly memorable videogame moments. After all, what are games for If they're not about doing cool shit that you cant do in real life?!
  • oXYnary
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    oXYnary polycounter lvl 15
    I think Downsizer is entitiled to his view. Though Im wondering Downsizer. Are there any games recently that have impressed you in the areas you mention overall? You mention painkiller, but only for light blooms.

    About the 15-16 hours.. Aww man. I was hoping with the time they had we would still see a 30 hour game. Though luckily I >always< play on the hardest setting. Versus wimping out with normal setting. wink.gif

    Well. at least it isnt 8 hours like Halo 2.. What a bunch of suckers..
  • Mishra
    hey, at least halo 2 had multiplayer.
  • adam
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    adam polycounter lvl 15
    I was expecting something pretty, so I got what I was expecting.

    Anyway, I think a general rule of thumb for thing studios should strive for are good graphics AND in-depth story. This in turn will create atmosphere - which, in my opinion, I believe can make or break a game. As far as I can tell with how far I am in the game, Valve has achieved this. It's a perfect blend of those elements creating the perfect game.

    In my opinion, of course.
  • adam
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    adam polycounter lvl 15
    [ QUOTE ]
    hey, at least halo 2 had multiplayer.

    [/ QUOTE ]
    And no chance of mods. And limited to smaller servers. And inferior graphics.

    Or you can get HL2 which does have multi-player, was released w/ a mod, includes extra material like a side game and was released with the developer tools.

    Snap. tongue.gif
  • Mishra
    oh snap i just got served. frown.gif

    oh well, inferior graphics on a console, meh. i'll take it. the mods for half life, the good ones i mean, will start to come out in a few months. i hate counterstrike, so i really am not in a hurry to play that. i'll still play half life 2, just not now. maybe in a month or so.
  • TomDunne
    I agree that I'm not entirelly thrilled with the visual quality - as I mentioned earlier, I'm personally disappointed in the texture resolution being so low. Looking at a similar game in terms of style, I think Max Payne 2 had crisper 2D work. However...

    I don't assume this is necessarily a flaw of the Source engine, or that this is all it's capable of. I mean, there's nothing about the engine that would require it to use some of the obviously lowpoly items in the game, like HL2's extremely primative trees or necessitate the blurred textures found in many places, etc. One, the game was in development forever and I expect that the assets have been revised over that time, but not everything got updated - it was 13 months late as it is. Two, I think Valve wouldn't have sought to push the envelope too far in terms of hardware requirements to play the game. Much of the original game's success was in its accessibility, and the fact that everyone and his brother could play mods for it in 1999 as well as 2004 made Valve a ton of money. My machine annihilates the CS 'stress test' at something like 133fps; no awesome shaders in there, but that's more than twice as fast as need be.

    I would not be surprised at all to see mods appear in late 2005 and through 2006 that are graphically more impressive than Half-Life 2 itself is, once the majority of users have the hardware to really tap the engine's potential.
  • Shawner
    I would play this bad boy, in the lowest settings, just to play( I don't have to of course ). The gameplay is just incredible...The interection with the enviroments outstanding. Very happy with this game. Half Life 2 is to gaming, what Star War ( original ) was to Sci-Fi. To me anyways..

    Cheers
  • mr.toast
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    mr.toast polycounter lvl 13
    just beat the zombie city part, so fun using the obstacles like the chopper thing, the flaming hall, or the falling cars, i had to redo that level twice to enjoy the experiance all over agian, my fav weapon by far is the gravity gun using the round saw blade to shoot at my enemies, the cinderblock was pretty fun to chuck around too at zombies, btw hl2world.com found a way to play multiplayer with hl2 with custom maps
  • ElysiumGX
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    ElysiumGX polycounter lvl 15
    It sounds like so many of you were expecting a realistic high rez cinematic experience, and instead received a computer game. That is so disappointing.

    Just a reminder: Most computer users do not have $400 video cards in their $600 systems. Companies such as Valve would need to optimize their assets in order to please larger audiences that still use old hardware. Most gamers are children who live off allowance and Christmas presents, not a $50,000+ salary from EA.

    Ironic how "Downsizer" complains about the lack of quality in the game.
  • gauss
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    gauss polycounter lvl 12
    Daz: criticism is of course allowed and always encouraged in this community of artists. i simply reserve the right to respond in kind. downsizer has valid points but also some comments that i felt like responding to, perhaps a bit too curtly.
    i just don't think it's fair to compare a game to either what you imagined it would be or by features from a work in progress, everyone here who has been worked on a title knows that nothing gets set in stone.

    i ordered the 'raising the bar' book earlier today and am really looking forward to checking it out, now that i am safe from ruining anything after beating it smile.gif the consistency of visual direction with the combine, particularly repetition of forms in things like the trains, the automatic turrets, the weapons, the citadel itself, all really impressed me.

    also i remember not thinking much of DOG when i saw a screenshot with him some time back--and i think that's because he has to be seen moving to be appreciated. wonderful characters all around.
  • Daz
    [ QUOTE ]
    Most gamers are children who live off allowance and Christmas presents, not a $50,000+ salary from EA.

    [/ QUOTE ]

    Woah there Grind, what is that meant to imply exactly? If that comment is directed at me, I'll be unbelievably angry that youre turning a discussion about a game into something quite so personal. If it isn't I apologize profusely for getting the wrong end of the stick, but Ive no idea what your EA and salary comment has to do with a conversation about HL2 texture mapping.

    People here are simply pointing out some shortcomings, thats all. How many times do I have to say that the game is absolutely amazing? Besides, Im talking about Source really and not HL2. Why people are getting their knickers in a twist over a couple of minor niggles being pointed out in an otherwise astounding game is totally beyond me. Clearly people feel passionately that this is a stunning game. As I do.

    Let me explain in more detail my niggle with the texture mapping system: texel density consistency. Let me also re-iterate that this game is un-fricking believably awesome.

    The overall experience of HL2 is so compelling, so visceral, so immersive, it's just like nothing else before it. So when you come across these random moments with huge pixels in front of you, it sort of ( for me at least ) jumps you back to the reality of 'oh, this is just a game, made from polys and pixels' a bit. Heres an absolutely stunning screenshot, only slightly marred by an object that youre forced to interact with close up that has these massive pixels that are rather sloppily UV'd:

    http://home.comcast.net/~dpattenden/images/d1_canals.jpg

    It's got little to do with what videocard its being run on. Look at textures in other cutting edge engines: Halo, Halo2 ( xbox ) , Battlefield 'Nam, Far Cry, and many more: you dont *see* pixels for the most part, because they employ a texture overlay system so that no matter how close you get to the rock, it just wont get pixellated. Check out this tree in this shot of Far Cry:

    http://home.comcast.net/~dpattenden/images/fc5.jpg

    The texel density throughout the image is constant, in the HL2 shot its all over the place. Im just suprised that this isnt something that was considered for Source thats all. Perhaps it comes later I dont know. Perhaps as Verm says that we'll start to see games that push Source more than HL2. It's just a tiny gripe thats all. Im a perfectionist. Im nitpicking. ( thats my job ) HL2 is a stunning achievement.
  • gauss
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    gauss polycounter lvl 12
    daz: great post. i know what you're talking about--and it's odd, because with HL:Source they appear to use some form of texture overlay system blanketed over all the old textures... it's not the best but it does help to stem the blurriness of the textures a little. i don't think i ever saw the same thing in HL2 proper, though, which really is kinda odd. there definitely are some objects in the game that are at odds with the other objects, texel density-wise.
    again, good post.
  • TomDunne
    Daz's screenshots saved me the trouble of getting my own, as this is exactly my point. In the Half-Life 2 shot, the texture work on the wheel and assembly it's mounted on... it isn't that these textures aren't merely as high fidelity as we've seen this year in Doom3 or Far Cry, it's that they almost look like they were pulled from some leftover Half-Life 1 assets. I can't believe this is an inherent engine limitation, as there are plenty of examples of good texture work throughout the game as well. That screenshot does have a ton of shader usage from the water, but I just can't imagine that necessitates such low-end texture work.

    Frankly, I think the fact that most of us who notice it are more or less shrugging it off is a testament to how goddamn amazing the game is. It's so good that relatively shoddy work like this doesn't bother me too much. In a lesser game, I'd probably be more critical, but HL2's gameplay is so superior to anything I can remember playing that I don't mind as much. Still, look at this game and imagine if the crispness of the 2D work was up to the level of that Far Cry shot...
  • Daz
    Well thats good to know that the engine is capable of it thanks gauss. Honestly I think they just ran out of time then. And heck, I dont really mind. Im buggered If Im prepared to wait around for the game for another few months just so they fix their texel ratios cos it niggles away at me a little bit smile.gif

    Should check out HL-Source but stupidly I only bought the regular and not the special edition. Anyone know If I can upgrade to include HL: source via steam even If I bought the game in a box? Is there much to report on HL: source over HL?
  • Daz
    yeah Verm thats absolutely it. Not only is the game so awesome that these moments of sloppiness tend to stand out, but for most of us here, 3D Art is either our trade, or study, or hobby, or some or all of the above. So its in our very nature to look for this stuff.
  • cep
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    cep polycounter lvl 14
    I'am in love. really.
    No disappointments.

    I like the fact that this game isn't as polished visualy as Doom 3, wich it's constantly compared to. It means valve put alot of time into the story, making the game enjoyable itself. I'am glad we didn't have to wait another half a year, or more, just because valve wanted to clean everything up. They obviously put time into what needed to be more visualy apealing, the average gamer doesn't notice low resolution textures.

    I think valve devided there time wisely, I'am glad they didn't compromise fixing up these textures for any part of the immersive story.

    Also remember this game is only $55.

    PS. I haven't read any posts until Daz's right above, so please ignore me if this has been said.
  • Daz
    I would hope that the people writing the story and working on gameplay wouldn't be the same people that made textures cep

    ;-)

    6 years is a long time to think about texel density. But I totally agree with your sentiment. More delays would have been hell!
  • cep
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    cep polycounter lvl 14
    Well uhhh. you got me there... wink.gif
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