Hl.jpgHalf-Life Artwork
Publisher(s)Sierra Studios/Electronic Arts/Valve Corporation
Release date(s)PC - November 19, 1998
PS2 - November 15, 2001
Genre(s)First-Person Shooter
Mode(s)Singleplayer, Multiplayer
Available onPC, PS2
RatingESRB: Mature 17+


[edit] Background

Half-Life is a first-person shooting science-fiction video game developed by Valve Software, first released by Sierra Studios on November 19, 1998 as a computer game.

In Half-Life, players take control of Gordon Freeman, a doctor of theoretical physics. He must fight his way out of the corrupted Black Mesa secret underground researching facility, whose teleportation technology has gone wrong.

[edit] Gameplay

Half-Life urges players to engage in combat and solve puzzles in order to progress through the various chapters. Opposed to the game's competition during the time of release, Half-Life marked an important breakthrough in video game history—scripted sequences, composed of aliens ramming through doors to major plot points in the game. The game's peers focused on cut-scenes depicting the next chain of events, rather them happening while in actual game play. Half-Life proved as an original success for first-person shooters, taking ideas to the next level.

Puzzle-solving plays a major influence in Half-Life. Players must regularly integrate puzzles, such as using the environment to kill an enemy, or navigating through terrain in special ways in order to advance on.

The player predominantly battles with firepower through the game, occasionally coming across assisting non-playable characters, helping to fight and further explain the plot. In Half-Life, a wide variety of enemies populate the game. Headcrabs, bullsquids, headcrab zombies, Vortigaunts, as well as human opponents such as the HECU Marines, and black op assassins, who are dispatched to contain the alien threats and silence witnesses.

[edit] Weapons (Half-Life)

(Opposing Force)

  • Combat Knife
  • Pipe Wrench
  • Desert Eagle
  • Barnacle Gun
  • M-249 SAW
  • Displacer Cannon
  • Shockroach
  • Spore Launcher

(Blue Shift)

[edit] Graphical improvements

[edit] Half-Life High Definition Pack

When Gearbox released Half-Life: Blue Shift in 2001, they also released an improved set of models and textures for the game called the "Half-Life High Definition Pack". The package improves the graphics of both the original Half-life, the two expansions and the game Team Fortress. Some weapons were also given new sounds to match the new models. The version of the games on steam, do not have these improved graphics as default, they can however be activated by following these official instructions

[edit] Half-Life: Source

To show that games running the goldSrc engine could run on the new Source engine, valve ported Half-Life to the source engine, and released this version under the name "Half-Life: Source" for the singleplayer part in 2004 and "Half-Life Deathmatch: Source" for the multiplayer part in 2005. This version of the game has, among other things, improved lighting and water effects. Valve also made the menus of the game resemble the system from half-life 2, with chapter selection and fancy background images.

[edit] Half-Life High Definition Pack and Half-Life: Source

To get the advantages of both Half-Life: Source and the "Half-Life High Definition Pack", a team of modders made a version of "Half-Life High Definition Pack", that can be installed in Half-Life: Source. This version is called the High-Definition Source project.

[edit] Black Mesa: Source

"Black Mesa: Source" is an unofficial and gratis remake of Half-Life released in 2012 by the Black Mesa Modification Team. The game is made in the Source engine, and features updated graphics, voice acting, gameplay and music. The game is available on www.blackmesasource.com

[edit] Expansions and Sequels

[edit] Expansions

Two PC expansion packs were released by third-party developer Gearbox Software: Half-Life: Opposing Force, and Half-Life: Blue Shift. In Opposing Force, the player is put into the eyes of HCEU marine Adrian Shephard, who is sent to cover up the evidence of the incident following up to Half-Life. Adrean Shephard gets disbanded from his squad, finding himself fighting for his life. This expansion pack introduced new firearms, non-playable characters, and unseen areas of the original Half-Life game. Blue Shift featured slight variations opposed to Opposing Force, such as differing character models. Both packs featured eleven chapters, whereas there was nineteen in Half-Life.

In Blue Shift, the story returns to the Black Mesa timeline once again, this time as Barney Calhoun, one of the facility's security guards. There are little differences between both Opposing Force and Blue Shift, aside from updated graphics. Blue Shift was originally supposed to be an exclusive bonus chapter for the canceled Dreamcast version. This expansion came along with the High Definition pack, which allowed an update for Opposing Force in the fields of graphics and content in Blue Shift.

Half-Life: Decay was another expansion pack created by Gearbox Software. Decay was only featured as an extra for the Playstation 2, as part of the original Half-Life. This version allowed players to team up cooperatively.

Half-Life: Uplink is a demo of Half-Life that consists of chapters that were cut during the development of Half-Life.

An assemblage was put together in 2000, consisting of Half-Life, Counter-Strike, Team Fortress Classic, and Half-Life: Opposing Force. This compilation was titled "Half-Life: Platinum Pack", and was re-released in 2002 as "Platinum Collection" and "Generation". These two iterations included the Half-Life: Blue Shift expansion pack. In 2005, Half-Life: Anthology was released, containing Steam-only editions of Half-Life, Half-Life: Opposing Force, Half-Life: Blue Shift, and Team Fortress Classic.

[edit] Sequels

So far 3 sequels have been released for Half-Life. Half-Life 2 in 2004, Half-Life 2: Episode One in 2006 and Half-Life 2: Episode Two in 2007. A short chapter Half-Life 2: Lost Coast was released in 2005. Furthermore, the games Portal and Portal 2 are also set in the Half-Life universe.

Two multiplayer only Half-Life games has also been released, namely Deathmatch Classic and Half-Life 2: Deathmatch.

Some more obscure games have also been released. Half-Life 2: Survivor which is an arcade game build on Half-Life 2, and Codename: Gordon, which is a 2d platformer/shooter, that was made as a promotion for Half-Life 2.

[edit] System Requirements (PC Version)

Taken from Steam.

Minimum: 500 mhz processor, 96mb ram, 16mb video card, Windows 2000/XP, Mouse, Keyboard, Internet Connection

Recommended: 800 mhz processor, 128mb ram, 32mb+ video card, Windows 2000/XP, Mouse, Keyboard, Internet Connection

Half Life
Half Life, Half-Life: Opposing Force, Half-Life: Blue Shift, Half-Life: Uplink , Codename: Gordon, Half-Life 2, Half-Life 2: Survivor, Half-Life 2: Deathmatch, Half-Life 2: Lost Coast, Half-Life 2: Episode One, Half-Life 2: Episode Two, Half-Life 2: Episode Three, The Orange Box
Portal, Portal: Still Alive, Portal 2
Team Fortress
Team Fortress, Team Fortress 2
Last edited by andersersej on 28 March 2016 at 07:33
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