(DEAD) Black Mesa [Steam] $4.99

Zepher

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bought a copy, never played the original half life, is this basically the original with better graphics?
 

SPARTAN VI

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Finally finished Black Mesa over the weekend. Great blast from the past and a major overhaul to Xen. This was a labor of love and it really shows.
 

Jim Kim

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This game is non-canon.
There is no such thing as canon in the Half Life universe. Valve even said so.
Originally posted by Mark Laidlaw:
The canon of the Half-Life and Portal series has never been officially defined by Valve, and never will be.
Series writer Marc Laidlaw stated that the issue of canon is "something the fans came up with"and that they do not have an official stance on it. He remarked that they "do not get involved in issues of canonicity" and that "canon itself is non-canon", letting the games stand on their own.

http://half-life.wikia.com/wiki/Half-Life_Wiki:Canon
http://combineoverwiki.net/wiki/Canon
 

Zarathustra[H]

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Finally finished Black Mesa over the weekend. Great blast from the past and a major overhaul to Xen. This was a labor of love and it really shows.

Yep, I was impressed.

I'm going to minimize spoilers in my comments, but I will say this:

I thought the beginning of "Xen" was a huge improvement over the original Half-Life, but I also felt like it started to drag after a while. it was just way too long, and started to feel like I was playing Doom, which the original Half Life never felt like. (For me, comparing anything to Doom is not a compliment)

By the time I got to "Interloper", it really started to feel like a churn to me. It was a shame. They were large impressive levels, but it felt like a drag and I just wanted it to be over with.

Either way, it was fun to revisit, and most if it was VERY well made, especially considering how it started out as a bunch of hobbyists working on a project for fun.

I'd argue it is well worth your $4.99 and your time. (took me about 20 hours to finish it)
 

T4rd

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Yep, I was impressed.

I'm going to minimize spoilers in my comments, but I will say this:

I thought the beginning of "Xen" was a huge improvement over the original Half-Life, but I also felt like it started to drag after a while. it was just way too long, and started to feel like I was playing Doom, which the original Half Life never felt like. (For me, comparing anything to Doom is not a compliment)

By the time I got to "Interloper", it really started to feel like a churn to me. It was a shame. They were large impressive levels, but it felt like a drag and I just wanted it to be over with.

Either way, it was fun to revisit, and most if it was VERY well made, especially considering how it started out as a bunch of hobbyists working on a project for fun.

I'd argue it is well worth your $4.99 and your time. (took me about 20 hours to finish it)

I loved every second of the new Xen levels and very much appreciated how long they made it. It was my favorite part of the original game and always thought it was way too short in it, so I was pleasantly surprised when I discovered how much they added to it. I may be remembering wrong since it's literally been 20 years since I played the original, but it seemed like Xen only lasted maybe an hour, whereas here it probably took me 3ish hours to get through. But I take my sweet time too, to explore and admire the environment they created there. Most of the vistas looking out into space look awesome.

Also worth mentioning is the soundtrack, at some of the parts is almost Doom 2016 level of exciting and fitting for the segments it comes in on. Most noteworthy is the chase sequence you get into on Xen, without spoiling too much about it.

Anyways, this is a must-buy for any FPS lover, and esp. any fans of the HL series.
 

Zarathustra[H]

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I loved every second of the new Xen levels and very much appreciated how long they made it. It was my favorite part of the original game and always thought it was way too short in it, so I was pleasantly surprised when I discovered how much they added to it. I may be remembering wrong since it's literally been 20 years since I played the original, but it seemed like Xen only lasted maybe an hour, whereas here it probably took me 3ish hours to get through. But I take my sweet time too, to explore and admire the environment they created there. Most of the vistas looking out into space look awesome.

Also worth mentioning is the soundtrack, at some of the parts is almost Doom 2016 level of exciting and fitting for the segments it comes in on. Most noteworthy is the chase sequence you get into on Xen, without spoiling too much about it.

Anyways, this is a must-buy for any FPS lover, and esp. any fans of the HL series.


Ha, I guess I'm the opposite.

In the original, the earth based drama was what sucked me into the game. While I remember most of the Half Life levels (maybe not in excruciating detail) I had actually completely forgotten that the Xen levels even existed since I last played through it in ~1997. I now remember that I thought they were kind of throwaway back then, and while they are certainly improved in Black Mesa are not my favorites now either.

Too Doom/Quake-like for my tastes. And honestly, those run and gun gib fests should stay in the 90's where they belong :p
 

SPARTAN VI

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The new Xen had a lot of abstract vertical / platforming puzzles which I appreciated, but I agree with Z that Xen was just a little bit too long. Compared to the original Xen, which was visually drab and featured monotonous gameplay, I think the new Xen is a fair trade. :)
 
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cybereality

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I haven't played HL1 to the end in probably 20 years, but Black Mesa was a better game playing it now.

I tried to play the original, but sadly the graphics were too dated to enjoy it. It also made me sick, not sure why.
 
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I haven't played HL1 to the end in probably 20 years, but Black Mesa was a better game playing it now.

I tried to play the original, but sadly the graphics were too dated to enjoy it. It also made me sick, not sure why.
Do graphics bother you that much? I just recently played through doom 64 and duke3d and had lots of fun. I played black mesa a while back when it was still a beta and they had finished almost everything up until xen. I'm going to buy it to support those guys and do the xen levels at some point.
 

Susquehannock

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13gb huh? Pretty big considering the original game is only 3.5gb. Downloading now.
 

Tobit

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Bought it today to take advantage of the price, can't play for two weeks though til the new PC is built.
 

Susquehannock

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I think the original game was around 300-400MB. There were CD audio tracks on the original CD as well for the music. If it were 3.5GB it wouldn't have fit on the hard drive of first computer I played Half-Life.
Yes. First one, HL1 (1998), was around 400mb. Was referring to original HL2, no add ons.
 

arr4ws

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man ive been wanting to play that remaster for a while.

might bite
 

nutxo

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Grabbed it. I've never played it and I thought what the hell. I just got fiber and wanted to see how fast it would download...
 

Jim Kim

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Grabbed it. I've never played it and I thought what the hell. I just got fiber and wanted to see how fast it would download...
LOL
Back in 2012 my old boss finally got a solid-state disk. You should’ve seen him opening up 350 MB pictures and saving them in Photoshop over and over again, he was giddy.
 

brinstar117

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Yes. First one, HL1 (1998), was around 400mb. Was referring to original HL2, no add ons.

That's a good point. I wonder why Black Mesa is so much larger at 13GB compared to HL2 at 3.5GB

I think it's likely that Black Mesa has a bunch of much higher quality textures. I played Black Mesa back when it called Black Mesa Source. It was a free mod and the Xen portion of the game was yet to be released. I remember being fairly impressed with the graphical presentation. However, I'm pretty easy to impress nowadays since I don't really follow the latest releases.
 

Dan_D

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That's a good point. I wonder why Black Mesa is so much larger at 13GB compared to HL2 at 3.5GB

I think it's likely that Black Mesa has a bunch of much higher quality textures. I played Black Mesa back when it called Black Mesa Source. It was a free mod and the Xen portion of the game was yet to be released. I remember being fairly impressed with the graphical presentation. However, I'm pretty easy to impress nowadays since I don't really follow the latest releases.
Higher resolutions could definitely be responsible for the file size increase. Everything you see has a texture to it. When you increase their resolution and quality, the game will get a lot larger real fast.
 

travm

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Purchased, thanks op. This has been on my radar for years. HL 1 might be the best single player fps I've ever played.
 

Lateralus

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I bought it also. HL1 is iconic and one of my favorite SP experiences. Played this when it was free but incomplete…felt like I should reward them for their efforts and commitment to seeing it through. It’s been on my wishlist for a while anyway.
 
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travm

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I bought it also. HL1 is iconic and one of my favorite SP experiences. Played this when it was free but incomplete…felt like I should reward them for their efforts and commitment to seeing it through. It’s been on my wishlist for a while anyway.
out of respect for nostalgia I refused to play it before complete. Seems about right to do so now.
 

brasherman

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Thank you OP! I also took the plunge and grabbed a copy. I never played the original all the way through, but I always wanted to finish it. Hopefully I can now!
 

travm

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unfortunately since I played this game 20 years ago its going much quicker this time. I recall having a much harder time with most of this.
 

Jim Kim

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unfortunately since I played this game 20 years ago its going much quicker this time. I recall having a much harder time with most of this.
Crank up the difficulty?
I built my first box on the day HL released to the shelves. When I got to surface tension and poked my head out of the drains (after cliff side) it was so hard I almost quit playing and a friend convinced me to continue with some good advice.:D
It’s still one of my favorite games.
 

travm

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Crank up the difficulty?
I built my first box on the day HL released to the shelves. When I got to surface tension and poked my head out of the drains (after cliff side) it was so hard I almost quit playing and a friend convinced me to continue with some good advice.:D
It’s still one of my favorite games.
The difficulty is fine, the issue is I know the answer to all the puzzles...
 
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