Half Life 2 - bit of a disappointment

pmv

Lifer
May 30, 2008
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Finally playing HL2, and, boy is it a let down.

The reason I'm so late playing it is that someone bought it for me ages ago, but Amazon's web page didn't mention that thanks to Steam it needed a net connection to install. So had it in the cupboard for ages till I could put my main machine on net temporarily just to install this thing (and install what seemed like several hundred windows xp updates, the longest 'windows is shutting down' experience I've ever had!).

I think its because in the meantime I've played Oblivion. I keep finding myself thinking that this game is graphically rather unimpressive, rather low poly (though the water effects are nice), and just frustratingly linear. Funny really in that its only doing what fps's have always done, but after a period when Oblivion was the only pc game I played, it seems artificially restrictive now.

Anyway, after waiting so long to play it, I'm not that impressed.

Oddly I find I prefer HL blue shift, which I've just reinstalled on my prehistoric machine with its state-of-the-art voodoo3.
 

pmv

Lifer
May 30, 2008
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True, though it should really have been Valve's loss if only Amazon had honestly described the product on it's web page. Making net access compulsory to install a game you've bought the dvd for is kind of ridiculous, especially when at the time broadband access was pretty expensive and not available everywhere.

Actually, Steam and the rest of that DRM rubbish is why I hardly ever buy PC games now.
 

Magusigne

Golden Member
Nov 21, 2007
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I'm not even sure where to start here....

The game is brilliant. The storyline pretty immersive, the environments also immersive.

I do understand the pain about the steam and DRM..but even still...maybe if you really overhyped it before you played..
 

JJ650

Golden Member
Apr 16, 2000
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Well, like said, you just waited too long. I'm actually playing thru again. Eps.1 and 2 I think were a lot more entertaining even though still pretty linear.
The last parts of Eps. 2 was really fun I think. I love the ending.
You may find those a bit more entertaining.
 

BassBomb

Diamond Member
Nov 25, 2005
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The game was out in 2005, no wonder you thought low poly. I found it was my favorite game of that year (even with the arguably better looking Far Cry and Doom3) I felt the source engine felt more real than the others.

Coming from Oblivion is probably why you are more dissapointed.

The main thing a bout HL2 is not so much the gameplay, but the story and situations. I'd play EP1 and EP2 to see where it goes (EP1 had improved shader effects, EP2 had higher poly models and environments in some aspects)

 

pmv

Lifer
May 30, 2008
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Yes, well I will persevere. I think I was expecting too much, it has had a lot of build-up over the years I've been waiting to play the damn thing. Thought it was funny though the way Oblivion has changed my expectations, I don't remember even noticing the linearity of FPS's back in the days of HL1, but now it feels quite unnatural. I have Epsiode 1 in the same 'box' (insofar as anything is actually in the box, with Steam).
 

nerp

Diamond Member
Dec 31, 2005
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You sound a little old school, keeping your gaming pc off the net, etc. Steam is a wonderful progression towards an integrated, medialess, auto-patching system, etc. There are already threads discussing steam here though, so I won't re-hash the prevailing arguments in favor of it. A lot of your DRM fears might be irrational or unfounded and it's a non-issue unless you plan on pirating games and playing online multiplayer. I liked HL2 and the subsequent episodes. I also play a lot of CS:S and TF2 so I can't fathom not using steam.
 

BassBomb

Diamond Member
Nov 25, 2005
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heh I was like that when HL2 first came out (because I pirated it) and I was scared of steam "phone home" and screw me over.

Fast forward to EP2 release, I wanted orange box so bad and it had all the old games so it was well worth my money. Now I love steam and plan to buy games through it in the future
 

FuryofFive

Golden Member
Sep 7, 2005
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HL2 is amazing...the OP should hang himself...well jk...oblivion is cool. but seriously, Steam has redefined digital distribution.
u probaly dont like it because of steam. ands such a letdown. next ur gonna say battlefield vietnam is one of the best games known to man.
 

EvilComputer92

Golden Member
Aug 25, 2004
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HL2 is mediocre at best. It felt like work just finishing the game because it was so stupidly linear at times. The Episodes were somewhat more fun to play.

It's especially going to feel terrible after coming from a sandbox game like Oblivion, which is the polar opposite of HL2 in linearity.
 

CP5670

Diamond Member
Jun 24, 2004
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I keep finding myself thinking that this game is graphically rather unimpressive, rather low poly (though the water effects are nice), and just frustratingly linear. Funny really in that its only doing what fps's have always done, but after a period when Oblivion was the only pc game I played, it seems artificially restrictive now.

I played it when it came out and had the same opinion. The graphics were okay but not great (especially after coming off Riddick and Far Cry) and the horribly repetitive level design frankly made the game a chore to play. The story was all told in a handful of cutscenes and most of the actual game had very little connection to it, basically consisting of running through hundreds of decrepit buildings that all looked identical and were very sparsely detailed. I have to admit, the last two or three levels were much more fun, but it really tested my patience to get that far into the game.

As for the linearity, this game is highly restrictive even by FPS standards. I have played few FPSs over the years that put you on rails as much as this one does. I honestly don't understand why so many people like it, considering some of the other stuff that is out there.
 

KeithTalent

Elite Member | Administrator | No Lifer
Administrator
Nov 30, 2005
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One of my favourite games of all time. I liked the graphics a lot and I felt really immersed in the world. Granted, I didn't feel that way the first time I played it, with low settings on a crappy system, when I upgraded and played it maxed out on a 24" screen I was really sucked into it. I really felt like I was Gordon Freeman and that made things so much more enjoyable.

Can't say the same for Oblivion though, that game just bored me to smithereens.

KT
 

RallyMaster

Diamond Member
Dec 28, 2004
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I never really played through HL2. I didn't find it all that interesting to be honest. It never had much of a multiplayer either (with HL2:DM). Oblivion required only 30 minutes of playtime before I uninstalled it. Never liked RPGs much anyway. The only games that do last me are the simulation racing games like Forza 2 and FPSes with large battlegrounds like Battlefield 2.
 

Modeps

Lifer
Oct 24, 2000
17,255
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When it first came out, I was really into it... I recently played HL2 again when Orange Box came out and I just wasn't feeling it. I think games have advanced so much since then that what felt like super and revolutionary back then almost seems like standard fare and cop outs now. Plus, I couldnt stand using the gravity gun all over again. It's mostly a one trick pony.
 

DangerAardvark

Diamond Member
Oct 22, 2004
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HL2 still holds up okay IMO. Episode 2 kicks its ass though. The graphics are better, and the gameplay and pacing are immaculate. Even the story exposition is improved. I held off on playing it when I got Orange Box and just finished it. It blows HL2 and Episode 1 out of the water.
 

ultra laser

Banned
Jul 2, 2007
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Personally, I've never found single player FPS to be any fun. Killing bots and following some contrived storyline never did it for me. Competitive, team-oriented multiplayer is what makes the genre so great.
 

pmv

Lifer
May 30, 2008
13,180
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Actually, probably I was a bit harsh. The speedboat levels are fun (you can tell I haven't got very far into it yet), and the physics engine is impressive. I think it is just that I now expect everything to be open and non linear a la Oblivion/GTA (and perhaps Operation Flashpoint, to a degree).

Single player games need good story lines I think. Too early to say about HL2. There seems to be a shortage of good stories around though - the Doom 3 plot was just a Gothified version of Half Life, wasn't it?

Apart from the fact I couldn't actually justify the cost of net access when HL2 came out, solely to install that game (broadband is much cheaper now - otherwise I still wouldn't be able to install the thing, couldn't help thinking people who didn't see the problem with steam lived in places with much cheaper broadband), what bothers me about Steam and the other forms of protection are (a) it kills the second hand market and (b) I worry its a step towards a pay-per-play model.
 

lxskllr

No Lifer
Nov 30, 2004
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I didn't like HL2 either. I bought it at release, and was hugely disappointed. The gfx were pretty lackluster, even for the time. The gameplay wasn't nearly as engaging as the original HL. EP1 I thought was better, and I have EP2 waiting for me to play it. I'm holding off on EP2 until the last expansion, then I'll play them all back to back for a continuous experience.
 

PhatoseAlpha

Platinum Member
Apr 10, 2005
2,131
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Eh, I didn't care for it myself. Graphics weren't awful, though not wonderful either, but the main problem was the weapons.
I had assumed people were gaga for the grav gun because it was awesome. After buy the game, I realized the actual reason was that every single other weapon in the game was garbage.
 

Dream Operator

Senior member
Jan 31, 2005
344
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Anybody else ever try the Fake Factory mod v8 out?

It replaces textures, models, sounds and changes the mood a bit. Doesn't make it a better game, but it does make it more enjoyable visually. Gun sounds are nice, but maybe a bit loud. Models look pretty good too.
 

Frodolives

Platinum Member
Nov 28, 2001
2,190
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HL2 was a good fps, even though I was quite late to play it, but replay value was very low for me.

Oddly enough, I enjoyed replaying Max Payne several times, even though I almost never like 3rd person shooters. Which reminds me that Remedy is still working on Alan Wake! That might be a fantastic game, if it ever comes out...
 

lxskllr

No Lifer
Nov 30, 2004
57,513
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Originally posted by: Frodolives

Oddly enough, I enjoyed replaying Max Payne several times, even though I almost never like 3rd person shooters.

I loved the Max Payne series, and I'm not crazy about 3rd person games either. Max Payne is definitely in my top 5 favorite games.