I NEVER want to go to Ravenholm [ever again]!

I’ll give you only one visual hint on what this is going to be about. See if you can guess.
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That’s right. It’s everyone’s favourite MIT graduate cum trigger-happy lab guy, Gordon Freeman come back to “liberate” City 17 in the stellar sequel to Half-Life original. I’m seriously not going to write a review for a game so old [and trust me, I’m NOT playing it for the first time only now. I’m playing it again to fully appreciate my new graphics card’s prowess. I’m satisfied :D] but I can assure you it’s still awesome.

If you wanted to get a break from all those [some pretty cool] games using the Doom3 engine and get too many shadows from all that sterile volumetric lighting, then Valve’s Source is STILL up there with the greats. Facial expressions, realistic eyeball movement [you have no idea how much realism that adds to game characters], superb lighting, great physics engine [outsourced from Havok btw] and just a genuine commitment to story-telling.

It’s even more cinematic than the original, especially since some story-relevant NPCs actually get to live long enough to demand interactivity AND chracteristic quirks and high-quality voice-acting. The AI is good, if not better than it was in the original. I actually feel the tension rising in times of conflict and get intensely frustrated with intelligent physics puzzles, not because they’re tedious or dumb, but because they are as hard to do and they might’ve been if you really had to do them.

I worship Valve. And when I’m done with Ep1, eventually, I’ll try Minerva. I’ll actually review the Minerva mod. Happy? Some more pics….

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Route Canal

For more, check out my Flickr photostream. I’ll still half-way through the game. I’ll upload cool shots as I go along. But no Ravenholm. It’s just too gory. I hate head-crabbed zombies!

P.S: And Zombines from Ep1.

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