New Mod for Half Life

New Mod for Half Life

We’ve been playing aroung with Gary’s Mod for a while now. It’s amazing to me how much you can do with a mod. There seems to be so many additions that must take almost as much time to create as the original game! The kids meanwhile, just take it in their stride as something that is entirely normal. How I wish they appreciated how much work has gone into the system, from the number of transistors in the graphics card, right through to the dedication of the Half Life modders community. It couldn’t be done by one person, but one person can so much to the whole experience. I must find out more about Gary.

I must also find out more about how to drive these graphics cards. All the lighting effects in the new technical Mod for Half Life 2 that my son has. It’s a seaside area and looks as tho’ it is done to show off some of the techniques that Valve are looking at. The lighting is the main source of inspiration. The software uses HDRI images to enable some fantastic lighting effects. The scene is dulled down when looking at a bright light, just as though your iris is closing a little to cope with the brightness. The seaside water reflections are great. Valve also offer a talk through of all the effects, explaining the pros and cons of each. You should definitley look for this download and check it out. It’s called the “Lost Coast”.

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Half Life 2 released The original game had some g…

Half Life 2 released

The original game had some good ideas, but they’ve been taken so much further with this release. The characters have fantastic detail on their textures and great facial expressions. The animation seems so flexible, they must have worked hard on the actual engine under the hood. The expressions add a lot to the mood of the moment, and how you think the characters are feeling.

There is a huge open air playing area. The transitions from inside to outside are pretty smooth and the game seems to flow well around the different sections. All the maps flow together quite seamlessly. I think it will take Leo a while before he can find his way through the whole game. The water is relealistic as open water. The spray is not convincing tho’. Need a bit more power and metaballs or particle to make it more like the real thing. Refraction is good. Either looking into the water, or being under the water. Feels right.

The physics are great. Are the physics from Havok? They seem quite accurate. Mixed with the rag doll effects, the bodies seem to fall naturally, even from high places. It just adds to the natural feel of the whole program, so you can sit there and get involved with the story with less things shouting at you saying “this is technically wrong”.

I might even have a go at playing it! Mostly I just watch my son Leo and friends. They are more adept at playing the game, especially when the crabs are around. I am just impressed by the sheer thought that has gone into the coding and the textures. It is something that I’d like to have worked on. It must be fun indeeed.