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Source SDK Released Soon, HL2 High in Gamerankings

Zonk posted more than 9 years ago | from the gift-for-the-community,-gift-for-the-developers dept.

Programming 137

Biomemetic writes "Valve announced yesterday that they'll be releasing the Source SDK next week, along with a "surprise for the community". Incidentally, the sound stuttering bug (actually three bugs, to do with texture loading problems), has been solved and an update released through Steam." Relatedly, Highpriest writes "According to gamerankings.com, Half Life 2's average review is higher than Halo 2's. Half Life 2 has recieved a 96.6% overall rating wheras Halo 2 came in with a 95.1%."

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TF2? (1)

Zardoz44 (687730) | more than 9 years ago | (#10926897)

Wasn't there speculation a while back that they would be releasing a multiplayer game to everyone who purchased HL2 + future add-ons option?

Maybe TF2, finally?

Re:TF2? (1)

Lord Bitman (95493) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927326)

future add-ons option? I certainly never saw that.

Re:TF2? (1)

Zardoz44 (687730) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927467)

I thought there was talk once that some packages would get new content (i.e., new MP games) as it's released and others would not. There doesn't seem to be any mention of that any more with the release of the bronze,silver,gold packages.

This is all from foggy memories of two-year-old gossip.

Re:TF2? (1)

Lord Bitman (95493) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927481)

an article from a few days before the release mentioned the possibility of new content on a monthly basis, but there was no mention of it being free for anybody :)

Re:TF2? (1)

bryhhh (317224) | more than 9 years ago | (#10930112)

According to this [steampowered.com] page

Next week we will be releasing the Source SDK, along with a surprise for the community.

TF2 maybe?

A surprise? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10926907)

Team Fortress 2, anyone?

The game got high rankings, but... (4, Interesting)

Grave (8234) | more than 9 years ago | (#10926929)

I felt it was a huge let-down. If not for CS:S and DOD:S being included in the package I got, I would've considered it a huge waste of money. The game was over much quicker than I expected, and the plot was not as in-depth or well told as it could've been. They seemed more interested in setting us up for the third iteration of the Gordon Freeman story than telling a genuinely good one.

Maybe my expectations were too high, but when magazines bandy about the phrase, "Greatest game ever," it's hard not to expect at least a game worthy of $60.

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (4, Insightful)

Chyeld (713439) | more than 9 years ago | (#10926967)

I think you breezed through the game without bothering to even look at anything that wasn't on the rails you were following if you feel the story wasn't in-depth or well told. No offense, there is a wealth of things in the game that are there to be found, you just don't have your nose rubbed in them.

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (1)

TwistedSquare (650445) | more than 9 years ago | (#10933285)

Can you give any examples? I've finished it and am left with the impression that there was barely a plot. You start off in the city, the soldiers chase you for no reason, you meet old friends, have to run around for no real reason, then run around to try and rescue Eli, who you then rescue from a guy who is trying to make deals with an army you know nothing about, and then you stop him. What more could I have found out? It's a fun game though :-)

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (1)

lordperditor (648289) | more than 9 years ago | (#10934132)

Ahhh you missed the bit were they reveal Elvis is alive and living on Xen.

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (3, Interesting)

Tobias Luetke (707936) | more than 9 years ago | (#10926992)

I think if HL2 was a letdown to you than you are probably done with computer games.
While i'm not saying that HL2 is the pinnacle of games forever I certainly belive it is currently.

There is only so much you can get out of a medium, if you don't enjoy the game most people call the best game ever made all things considered than thats a good indication to find a new hobby.

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (4, Insightful)

flibuste (523578) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927071)

the game most people call the best game ever made

I think this needs a slight correction: it is the *best first-person shooter ever*. OK for that (although I don't find it such a killer after all). But not the *best game ever*. As an example, you cannot compare World of Warcraft with HL2 in terms of gaming. It's just not the same kind at all. You can compare the technicality of it, graphics, softaware performance, etc. but that's only part of game softwares. It is difficult to measure the player's immersion in the game between those 2 for instance.

That would be like comparing M$ Word with Eclipse: "Best software to type text with".

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (1)

superpulpsicle (533373) | more than 9 years ago | (#10928445)

Either way HL2 is better than Halo 2. Not to flame xbox users, but I still can't figure out the hype behind Halo 2. It was the biggest marketing blitz, and I swear UT2004 is still better. And that was released months ago.

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (1)

Zorilla (791636) | more than 9 years ago | (#10930117)

Well, like the World of Warcraft comparison, this is an apples-and-oranges comparison. UT2004 doesn't have a true single player experience. It may have bots, but that's only interesting for a couple days.

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (3, Funny)

Joff_NZ (309034) | more than 9 years ago | (#10928468)

That would be like comparing M$ Word with Eclipse: "Best software to type text with".

Of course, we all know that the best one of those is vi..... or emacs... nope, definetely vi :)

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (2, Interesting)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927094)

Just because most people say something, doesn't make it true.

I played HL2 at a friends for a few minutes. It was just another FPS to me, with prettier graphics. But then, it seems graphic quality is the sole yardstick for measuring a games value these days.

It didn't do anything for me, just another entry in a pretty stale genre.

I liked the huge open maps of Far Cry, or the vehicles in Halo. In fact, after Far Cry, I don't think I can play another on-rails FPS.

HL2 and Doom 3 both came off as tech demos to me, something you go ooh and ahh and would expect to get on the bonus CD that shipped with your graphics cards.

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (1)

Devalia (581422) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927358)

It was -- thats how i got my copy, Ati Voucher :)

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (2, Interesting)

Lisandro (799651) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927538)

The last FPS i truly enjoyed was Painkiller. Top notch graphics, physics engine (you can kill enemies in pretty funny ways), and sound, huge levels, enviroment, and a shitload of enemies. What's not to like? And, unlike others in the genre, is downright fun and doesn't take itself too seriously. Much like the Serious Sam series, but on steroids.

It also has some great multiplayer modes.

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (2, Interesting)

Zorilla (791636) | more than 9 years ago | (#10930124)

Painkiller's physics were absolutely perfect. That game made me wonder why everybody was praising the physics in Half-Life 2 when it still managed to carry over weird control issues from HL1, like getting stuck and having to duck or jump to get going again.

At least you don't have to duck-jump anymore.

The only thing I had against Painkiller was the lack of continuity in the music. It would go from really nice ambient music and simply fade in metal without any real transition.

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10930201)

If by "perfect" you mean "ridiclously cartoony". Painkiller takes the term "ragdoll" very seriously.

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10930210)

Yes. And that's why we loved it.

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (5, Insightful)

theraccoon (592935) | more than 9 years ago | (#10928331)

I don't think playing it "at a friends for a few minutes" is giving the game a fair chance. The whole thing with both Half-Life's is the scripted scenes and story. You need to be at home, alone, lights off, and then play it. You need to let the game take over your mind for a few hours. You'll eventually come up for air, wonder what happened to the last six hours, then dive in for another six.

What you did, it's like watching a scary movie in the park on your laptop on a sunny afternoon with 20 friends huddled around you. Of course you won't get the full effect of the movie in that kind of situation. Same with this game. You have to treat a game like this as a movie, because that's what they're slowly becoming -- an interactive movie.

With that said, HL2 does have room for improvement, but not much. It really is a damn good game. I've yet to hear from anyone who's played it all the way through to be disappointed. The "disappointed" folks are like you, who are expecting this mind-blowing "i ate the red pill" kind of thing, and it's not that -- that's the HL:VR game, due to be released in 2055. Until then, HL2 is the best game out there.

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (2, Interesting)

Cochonou (576531) | more than 9 years ago | (#10930075)

I've played all the way through, and I'm disappointed.
The game is really good, but it felt short on my expectations. Maybe they were too high...

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (3, Interesting)

Zorilla (791636) | more than 9 years ago | (#10930136)

I liked the huge open maps of Far Cry, or the vehicles in Halo. In fact, after Far Cry, I don't think I can play another on-rails FPS.

At the most, the path only branches off into two or three subpaths and always converge at the next checkpoint. You ever tried straying off the path in Far Cry? You usually either end up getting gunned down by really big weapons or see the terrain gradually become more simple (as the map designers had not intended you to go that far) and you hit a steep hill or invisible wall.

Also, you can tell Far Cry's openness has its limits, as the developers decided to just print the fly-through of the island, which appears at the game menu, to video, as opposed to Unreal, which used a live-rendered flythrough of the castle.

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (1)

jtids (786024) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927035)

I quite like Half-life 2. Although I was expecting an in-depth story there was plenty of action which kept me satisfied.

The game was was shorter than I expected, but has a good replay value.

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (1, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10927162)

I have to agree with you. Yes, the game has nice graphics (not the best ever, though) and very cool physics. But the story wasn't all that in-depth. You spend 90% of the game going from one place to another, for no real purpose other than because someone at one place says "you should go talk to blah" then you spend 20 minutes driving around or running through buildings to get there. Then you do it agian. And again. And again.

Not to mention, the game is far too short. I don't know if I've ever beat a game in my life - if I have, it's only been one. Until Half-Life 2. I beat it in two days, playing about five hours each day.

For $60, I'd like more than 10 hours of game play. It's a really expensive game for what you get. And considering how half-assed CS:S currently is, that doesn't (yet) compensate.

The only reason HL2 is going to sell so many copies and be ranked so highly is because everyone who wants CS:S has to buy HL2 to get it. So they're really able to combine the numbers to pump their "sales". It would be like saying "You can buy Halo 2 and get GTA:SA with it for free!". Well, everyone who likes Halo 2 will buy the package. Everyone who likes GTA will buy the package. So you're doubling the sales figuers for both, which will boost future investments and industry notice.

Personally, I would rather have been able to just spend $10 or $20 and have CS:S by itself.

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10929446)

If you beat HL2 in only 10 hours, you must have been FLYING through it. I barely did any exploring and it took me at least 18 hours.

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10928157)

I felt it was a huge let-down. If not for CS:S and DOD:S being included in the package I got, I would've considered it a huge waste of money. The game was over much quicker than I expected, and the plot was not as in-depth or well told as it could've been. They seemed more interested in setting us up for the third iteration of the Gordon Freeman story than telling a genuinely good one.

Replace CS:S and DOD:S with Xbox Live Support, and Gordon Freeman for Master Chief, and you have a perfect review of Halo 2

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10933758)

Everytime someone complains about lack of story I always think of Aeon Flux - a wierd animation from a wierd guy. I know people who hate it because it has no story. But thats not quite right. Even though nothing is ever explained each episode is a story in itself.

There are so many other things to harp about with the game such as the lack of genuinely new stuff. Headcrabs. Different Headcrabs. Headcrab Zombie. Different Headcrab Zombie. Human Thing. Differenent Coloured Human thing. Thats shockingly unoriginal especially since half of them are in HL1 and its expansions.

Re:The game got high rankings, but... (1, Insightful)

lordperditor (648289) | more than 9 years ago | (#10934115)

[quotes] - a huge waste of money - it's hard not to expect at least a game worthy of $60. *shakes head* What exactly were you expecting for your $60??? I was expecting a computer game. And funnily enough I got one, one that is a lot of fun to play.

HL2DM? (3, Interesting)

katanan (764663) | more than 9 years ago | (#10926988)

there are rumours floating around of HL2DM so we shall see.

HL2 better get a better review... (-1, Troll)

dhakbar (783117) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927033)

Halo 2 sucks my balls. Weakest. Multiplayer. Evar.

Re:HL2 better get a better review... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10927103)

How can Halo 2's multiplayer be worse than HL2's which consists of Counterstrike, a game so awful I'd rather go through military drill than play it?

Gamerankings.com is meaningless (1, Funny)

stratjakt (596332) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927073)

It's skewed towards the PC demographic anyways. How did HL2 fare against Doom 3?

I wish people wouldn't compare Halo to PC FPS's, it's a completely different sub-genre, IMO.

Yeah, sure, you can be more accurate shooting with a mouse and keyboard. But who the hell wants to drive a warthog or fly a banshee with a mouse? My point being, the FPS legacy is only part of Halo's overall gameplay.

Of course, I should point out that it's entirely possible for more than one game to be good. Just because you like HL2 doesn't mean you have to hate on everything else.

Halo 2 is what it is, a great console game. Just like HL2 is what it is, forced anal penetration from Gabe Newell himself.

Now grab your ankles and install steam, bitches.

Re:Gamerankings.com is meaningless (3, Insightful)

Lukey Boy (16717) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927165)

I found it way more fun - and easier - to drive all of the vehicles in Halo using the mouse and keyboard. Maybe that's just me though.

Re:Gamerankings.com is meaningless (1)

j.bellone (684938) | more than 9 years ago | (#10929128)

Same with the above.

Halo 2 is a waste of money, if/when it drops to $30 I might consider buying it. Thank god for Blockbuster; allows me to screen all the bullshit that consoles fling out before I buy it.

Re:Gamerankings.com is meaningless (1)

Elkboy (770849) | more than 9 years ago | (#10930036)

Halo was just as enjoyable on my PC as on Xbox, and there's no reason to think Halo 2 is different. It's just a matter of preference, nothing else.

If you're so worried about Valve controlling how you play HL2, you should be aghast at the oppressive methods of Microsoft and their completely untweakable games and online gaming systems. But you're probably not.

Re:Gamerankings.com is meaningless (1)

johannesg (664142) | more than 9 years ago | (#10935646)

I wish people wouldn't compare Halo to PC FPS's, it's a completely different sub-genre, IMO.

That's an interesting statement. Let's see: in an FPS you see the world in first person perspective and shoot things. In Halo you see the world in first person perspective and shoot things. In an FPS you usually have some meaningless story, nice graphics, and a choice of weapons. In Halo you have a meaningless story, nice graphics (unless you are bothered by repetitive design), oh wait, now I see: you don't get a choice of weapons.

Right... Completely different subgenre. It is clearly a RLFPSWO2G (that's "Repetitive Level First Person Shooter With Only Two Guns"). Glad we cleared that up.

Lag problem (3, Interesting)

*s.panzer* (827737) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927090)

I'm surprised valve hasn't even recognized the fact that many (much closer to 5% than the stuttering bug) people are having problems playing all steam games. Ever since I installed HL2, All of my games have started to lag horribly, with a ping of 200-2000

Re:Lag problem (1)

megan_of_wutai (649071) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927134)

You've had it running constantly? Why?

I would presume it's been downloading all that time, it should have downloaded everything it *can* in a couple of days.

Re:Lag problem (1)

*s.panzer* (827737) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927268)

No, I meant that ever since I installed HL2 (even after restarting it many times) all Hl1 mods, HL1, and CS:S have been lagging really badly (network lag, not video lag). Before HL2, I got decent, playable pings to servers, 90-160. Now all of my VALVe games and mods are completely unuseable

Re:Lag problem (1)

Chyeld (713439) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927312)

You need to look somewhere else to blame. Not only has that not happened to any of the people I've spoken with, but it's highly unlikely that anything you did to install HL2 could cause that sort of problem.

Right click on the Steam Tray Icon and pick "Monitor" from the options. This pops up a screen from where you can see if Steam is downloading anything in the background. If you don't see anything there, then something else is causing your ping problems.

Re:Lag problem (1)

*s.panzer* (827737) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927376)

Done that. Even when doing nothing, I get terrible ping with steam. The moment I start querying servers, steam takes up all my bandwidth and everything slows. So long as i'm not refreshing servers, everything works exactly as it should.

Re:Lag problem (1)

webrunner (108849) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927419)

Make sure that that in steam options your network setting isn't set down to dialup. When CS:S came out mine got set down to dialup for some reason, maybe it did it when you installed HL2?

Re:Lag problem (1)

*s.panzer* (827737) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927537)

Well you see... the only way I can get my ping down to a playable level (for local servers only) is to set my rate, which is what I think your talking about, to the preset of a 14.4 k modem. Its the only thing that seems to help at all

Re:Lag problem (1)

megan_of_wutai (649071) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927583)

You are a troll and I claim my 5 pounds

Re:Lag problem (1)

*s.panzer* (827737) | more than 9 years ago | (#10928253)

Indeed, that reply was very troll-y of me. I was just stating the fact that before HL2, no lag, after much lag.

That's good... (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10927141)

Half Life 2's average review is higher than Halo 2's.

That's good, because we hate anything associated with Microsoft 'round these here parts...

Jesus.

Re:That's good... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10927167)

You're new here, aren't you?

Re:That's good... (1)

Carlbunn (817714) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927787)

Sorry to ruin it for you, but Valve is formed by a bunch of ex-MS employees

Re:That's good... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10927894)

*Keyword 'ex'*

Re:That's good... (1)

log0n (18224) | more than 9 years ago | (#10928843)

Put the emphasis on the 'ex-' part and we've got no problems ;-)

The Surprise (5, Funny)

Lord Bitman (95493) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927431)

"We're just kidding, that was only half the game. Log in to Steam for the rest of it, now."

Funny... (-1, Troll)

wolf31o2 (778801) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927460)

...but I rank both games with a 0% since they don't run on my preferred platform. I could care less how good someone claims a game is if I can't play it.

Now before anyone runs out and starts whining like a bunch of babies about this, realize that it is very cheap (comparatively) to hire a single programmer to do a port to Linux for a game.

As I have said before, if the percentage of people that buy the game to play on Linux is, let's be conservative and say 1% (market share, total sales, I don't care), then it would still be cheaper to hire someone like Ryan "icculus" Gordon or Timothee "TTimo" Bessett, like Epic and Id have done, to do the ports and gain that 1% market share than it would be to gain the same 1% via advertising in a market which they are already saturating, such as the Windows gaming market.

I spend my dollars where I know that I am appreciated. Currently, that means buying games from Epic and Id (and a few others) as they cater to my wants in regard to gaming.

Re:Funny... (1)

Senjutsu (614542) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927530)

Except that both the UTs and DooM III/Quake/ etc, make use of OpenGL, making the port relatively easy, whereas the Steam engine is strictly DirectX, meaning a full engine rewrite would be necessary. That's much more than a simple one person job.

I can understanding wanting a port, but economically its a lot costlier than you're making it out to be. Half-life 2 just wasn't designed with the kind of portability in mind that those games were.

Re:Funny... (1)

EsbenMoseHansen (731150) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927624)

UT2004 (at least) use DirectX on the win32 version. Check the requirements for the game if you doubt me :)

It has an OpenGL codepath under Windows... (1)

Senjutsu (614542) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927657)

but it isn't "officially" supported. The UTs are kind of a special case because Tim Sweeney's long said that they'd do Linux ports because they were the right thing to do, even if they weren't profitable, so they put the extra effort into creating a OpenGL code path even though they don't need it, because its existence makes a Linux port quite simple.

Re:It has an OpenGL codepath under Windows... (1)

j.bellone (684938) | more than 9 years ago | (#10929142)

If you feel like paying for Cedega, HL2 will run next month.

Re:It has an OpenGL codepath under Windows... (1)

EsbenMoseHansen (731150) | more than 9 years ago | (#10929786)

It's not the paying I mind. It's the fact that it seldom works, and never perfectly. This is my experience with Civ III, which is an officially supported game, plus a host of other non-supported games.

No, if game developers want my money, it's the Linux way. I, myself, develop software, which I rutinely run on Z/OS, Linux and windows. It is not that hard! In fact, if I were developing games, I would do it hardware indepently enough that porting to PS2, gamecube, xbox and windows would be no problem --- and keep the developing on the greatest development platform I have ever had the pleasure to use.

Re:Funny... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10928844)

It's really not that hard to port directX to openGL. They could even compile the game with Transgaming's directx->opengl compatability layer. No sweat.

Good Call (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10929394)

I'm blind, so I give every movie zero stars.

You're full of it. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10929848)

Hmmm.... sorry, but no.

Porting a game to linux is probably less expensive relative to cost of developing the original game, but it is not trivial. Let's say that we want this thing to run as well as it's Windows equivalent -- you're looking at full rounds of playtesting , and added costs of materials and training to make sure that helpdesk staff can support the thing. Oh, and what are you going to do about sound? You going to forget about 3d sound and simply map everything to the front speakers? Or, do you want to go with the .90 version of ALSA? Or rewrite for SDL?

Or did you want some intern to write a wrapper, forget about playtesting or support, and just dump it on th e linux crowd?

Re:Funny... (1)

bm17 (834529) | more than 9 years ago | (#10929918)

It's not neccessarily as simple as porting the code. From what I've seen of the Linux dri drivers (for OpenGL) they are a bit lacking. The open source drivers often fallback to slow paths for complicated instructions. The closed drivers, such as nVidia's work well but seem to be missing some important extentions, like programable shaders. Additionally, the nVidia driver does a busywait while it is waiting for the GL queue to synchronize and that might affect the amount of work that the game can do while the card is processing data. Then again, I don't know how these games are threaded.

Gah! (0, Troll)

Turn-X Alphonse (789240) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927539)

I haven't even got a PC that can play HL2 right now. I should have my new PC by a week on Wednesday but I'm still stuck on 56k. So how big is this patch? It seems forced up on us by STEAM to boot. How big is this patch?

Oh BTW theres a new patch, DOWNLOAD IT OR DIE!!! - Steam every time you open it

Re:Gah! (1)

irix (22687) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927593)

How big is this patch?

It came down over my 56k connection in a minute or two.

Re:Gah! (1)

Turn-X Alphonse (789240) | more than 9 years ago | (#10928650)

Could you tell me how long it takes to auth HL2 on 56k as well please.

Re:Gah! (1)

irix (22687) | more than 9 years ago | (#10934976)

It took a few hours. I did it the day that the game was released, so I'm not sure if that was because of the 56k connection or overloaded servers at Valve or both.

Re:Gah! (1)

Propagandhi (570791) | more than 9 years ago | (#10928447)

You can always turn auto updating off in Steam.

Main Steam Menu=>Play Games=>Right Click Game=>Properties=>Automatic Updates

Sorry.. (3, Informative)

Danse (1026) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927709)

The stuttering bug is not fixed. I'm still getting it just like always. It may have fixed it for some people, but not for me. I've noticed quite a few threads on various HL2 forums by others who are still experiencing the problem as well.

Re:Sorry.. (1)

Propagandhi (570791) | more than 9 years ago | (#10928455)

I think the main problem right now is that people aren't having the "same" stuttering bug. I'm willing to bet that your bug is less minor than the one fixed with the patch (this bug made the game nearly unplayable, everytime a sound played there'd be a 1-2 second pause).

Re:Sorry.. (1)

XaviorPenguin (789745) | more than 9 years ago | (#10928888)

I didn't have the stuttering bugg as they said. Only after I loaded a new area I stuttered with the sound for 2 seconds, no problem to me at all. However, since the upgrade, I stutter every time somebody speaks. The weapon sounds, engine sounds, everyday sounds are ok, but when people talk, stut-ut-ut-uter every time. I wonder if they will release a patch to fix my problem. Yes, I have posted this problem to Steam/Valve as well.

Re:Sorry.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10929776)

Try flipping the new setting mat_forcemanagedtextureintohardware in console.

STUTTERING PROBLEM IS DUE TO THE .GCF FILES! (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10929711)

Using hlextract (included with HLLib 1.1) I've extracted the contents of my decrypted retail .gcf files (well, 5 of them). I then installed a NOSTEAM crack, and now the game is actually playable on my machine. No stuttering. E-mail valve and let them know - DRM is fucking lame.

The stuttering problem has not been solved (1, Redundant)

gozu (541069) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927739)

At least not for me. I got the patch and I don't notice any improvement. The stuttering is still there (amd64 3200+ , 1gb ram, 9700pro).

Word to the wise: press releases != the truth

Re:The stuttering problem has not been solved (1)

Datasage (214357) | more than 9 years ago | (#10929390)

As long as everyone wants to run high detail settings when they dont have the hardware to support it, its definitly not going to go away.

I only have the studdering issue in high detail mode, Medium is almost perfect. My system is about equivilant to yours.

Re:The stuttering problem has not been solved (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10929456)

You are obviously not familiar with the problem. It isn't a resource / speed issue. Many system stutter regardless of the settings. The patch hasn't fixed the issue.

Re:The stuttering problem has not been solved (1)

Elkboy (770849) | more than 9 years ago | (#10930046)

It mostly fixed it for me on my Intel processor and GeForce graphics card, but I'm sure that's unrelated. :)

I have still not been able to play due to crashes (2, Funny)

_wintermute (90672) | more than 9 years ago | (#10927960)

Like hundreds (if not thousands) of others, I am suffering from a "Memeory read error" that appears to be related to the stuttering bug we saw earlier. Half Life 2 crashes immediately after the intro sequence, and often at the menu screen itself! I haven't even seen the game yet ...

While I we're waiting for a patch to make this game usable, anyone want to buy a set of coasters?

http://cgi.ebay.com.au/ws/eBayISAPI.dll?ViewItem &i tem=4339088136

Re:I have still not been able to play due to crash (1)

Propagandhi (570791) | more than 9 years ago | (#10928466)

Download the game from steam and I'm willing to bet your problem will be fixed. The only people that I've found to have the bug you're talking about purchased it at retail.

I heard tell of some kind of diagnostic tool, I think it's been released. Try running that or redownloading the game. If that fails, call VU, as the problem has to do with their copies of the game, not the ones Valve has distributed over Steam.

Re:I have still not been able to play due to crash (1)

_wintermute (90672) | more than 9 years ago | (#10928728)

Yep, did that. Clean install via via steam. Same problem. Did the diagnostic. No problems with the game itself. The bug is affecting BOTH retail and Steam users, ATI and Nvida, good specs, bad specs.

I have tried everything from bios setting changes through to Windows tweaks, to no avail. Valve has it listed on support, but there's no fix ... just a messsage to submit details from msinfo32.

Have you tried running a memory tester... (1)

Senjutsu (614542) | more than 9 years ago | (#10929229)

like Memtest86 [memtest86.com] . I'm wondering if Hl2 isn't just stressing out some flakey RAM.

Re:Have you tried running a memory tester... (1)

_wintermute (90672) | more than 9 years ago | (#10929388)

Brand new box, bought it last weekend. Memory is fine, other games run.

Seriously, tried everything, lots of people have simialr issues.

Re:Have you tried running a memory tester... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10929477)

I was getting a memory read error while using Refresh Force to force my refresh rate. Returning it to the default settings fixed it. I don't see how the two are related but all I know is what I saw.

Re:Have you tried running a memory tester... (1)

Taulin (569009) | more than 9 years ago | (#10930059)

I heard that if you install CS:Source first, without HL2, run it, THEN install HL2 it runs. This of course comes from an idiot at work who 'has' two friends who came across the same problem

No Product Activation (-1, Offtopic)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10928314)

The only thing they could possibly do that would be newsworthy or exciting for me is release a game I can buy on a shelf in my local store and have it play on a PC without product activation. I won't buy product-activated ANYTHING, including HL2. Who needs it?

Everything else pales in comparison. Gabe and the others could publicly disembowel themselves while drinking day-glo paint on the steps of the White House, and I would yawn and change the channel. Stop the product activation, or go away and die. FU, Valve.

Realism (5, Insightful)

Gamefreak99 (722148) | more than 9 years ago | (#10929019)

The story might be all the great (the ending is supposed to be "bad", I'm about 2 chapters away so I can't judge it yet). But that's not really the beauty of the game. You load it up, get set, and start playing. But its more than playing. It is like you're in that world; you're in _a_ world. And its not that dissimilar from ours. Everything responds so realisitically. You go up to a combine soldier in the beginning and get into his face. He'll grab you by the collar and gave you a smack with his shockstickthinger. If we were in City 17 and you did that I guarentee you that'd they do the exact same thing. Shoot a barrel in the game from x angle and it will roll/move in y direction. Do it in real life and you have the same result. Put people (NPCs) in the situations they're put in the game and you'll get the emotions they display; anger, humor, hopelessness. You have NPCs that shrug, people who arch their eyebrows. You have hand guesture- someone pointing to someone else or laying their hand on their chest saying something sarcastic. You have AI that is supurb. Enemies that act as if they're who they are. Fighting a solider and a zombie are two completly different tasks. Brains vs brawn. Even breaking it down futher; zombies that will lunge slowly towards you trying to corner you so they can get you vs zombies that blitzkreig you with their friends as fast as they can. Its an amazing game. The plot might not be "good" but it is believable enough. but the biggest part is the enviroment, it is _right_.

Re:Realism (1)

francium de neobie (590783) | more than 9 years ago | (#10929660)

I've finished the story. The storyline was just the usual sci-fi stuff and it's not that spectacular. What I think that made HL2 stands out from other games is the characters. Valve has done an excellent job here. The characters in the game express emotions, have their own agendas, are all useful in the story. These all makes you feel the characters are indeed living persons instead of a pile of polygons that tells you stuff and let you proceed (like, "Marine, get to the Alpha Labs and meet team Bravo, ASAP!! Over!!").

So, IMHO, the realism of HL2 is not just the physics. Physics is something dead and cold, even in motion, and it's only half of it. It's the living realism that matters, the people. *** SPOILER AHEAD!!! DON'T READ IF YOU HAVEN'T FINISHED THE GAME!!! ***











In Ravenholm for example, there was the mad man who fought zombies day in day out. At beginning you thought he's mad and he's going to kill you. Soon you realize that he actually helps you (a lot), despite his demonic laughter. And finally, when you leaves, you feel sorry for him becoz he insists on "freeing" his zombiefied fellows.

And then there is Dr. Mossman. I can never forget her acting in Nova Prospekt - if this is a movie I guess she'd be nominated for this year's best female actor ;). At first you think she's just another friendly female scientist who's fond of you. Then it turned out she's a spy. And being a spy, she lies and tries to obtain trust from you. She did exactly that she lied even when it's risking her life! I can never forget the scene where, after her spy identity was revealed, she was forced to teleport Dr. Vance out of Nova Prospekt by you and Alyx. She pretended to cooperate until the final moment, when she jumped onto the teleport personally with Dr. Vance, disrupting the teleportation process and potentially sending both of them dead - "I'm sorry, but that's the ONLY choice!". I screamed to the top of my lung "FUCK YOU!!!!!!" when I heard that. That's one line in an FPS that I won't forget for quite some time.



There are a lot more interesting people in the game of course. All I can say, the acting in the game (or... the movie? ;^) ) was really impressive, for an FPS experience at least. It made you care about the people there and feel the environment is living. I've long missed that feeling since Fallout 1 and 2.

Re:Realism (1)

Cochonou (576531) | more than 9 years ago | (#10930088)

I agree with you for Ravenholm, I found this part of the game to be one of the best.
However, don't you find the behaviour of Dr. Mossman to be one of the most over used clichés of every action movie ?

Re:Realism (1)

Zorilla (791636) | more than 9 years ago | (#10930149)

I screamed to the top of my lung "FUCK YOU!!!!!!" when I heard that.

I don't know about you, but I was laughing my ass off when I dropped into the hole after the strider plaza area and Barney said, "If you see Dr. Breen, tell him I said, *KABOOM*ck you!'"

Re:Realism (1)

Khuffie (818093) | more than 9 years ago | (#10931613)

Realism? I don't recall walking around outside and have to wait for 5 minutes, while the screen fades out and a big huge LOADING sign comes out telling me to wait until I can move forward again.

Hmm (3, Interesting)

XellDx (737289) | more than 9 years ago | (#10929341)

According to gamerankings.com, Half Life 2's average review is higher than Halo 2's. Half Life 2 has recieved a 96.6% overall rating wheras Halo 2 came in with a 95.1%."

As a point, Half life 2 has 29 reviews, while Halo 2 has 67.
As with any percentage, the more chances of change the different the outcome

"more chances of change the different the outcome" (1)

Kelmenson (592104) | more than 9 years ago | (#10932529)

As with any percentage, the more chances of change the different the outcome
What is that supposed to mean? "The more chances of change"? "The different the outcome"?

The more samples you have, the more accurate the results usually are. Of course, if the last 20 Halo reviews come from the "Podunk, Iowa Gazette", then you may be skewing your results.

But no matter, your phrase makes no sense.

Re:"more chances of change the different the outco (1)

XellDx (737289) | more than 9 years ago | (#10932937)

Yes, well I had a point, and then I only had about 10 seconds of which to type. What should have gone there was

"With a wider source of reviews there is a higher margin of accuracy." Meaning Half life 2's could go down with more bad reviews, while Halo 2 is slightly more grounded where it is.
My bad for hitting -submit-, not -preview-, and then not correcting myself.

Keanu Reeves should play Half-Life 2 (1)

francium de neobie (590783) | more than 9 years ago | (#10929696)

You see... even the computer characters in HL2 are acting better than him as Neo. He feels more "computerized" (in a lame way, not the cool, deadly Agent Smith way) than some of the NPCs in HL2.

Re:Keanu Reeves should play Half-Life 2 (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10929973)

-1, Obvious

Re:Keanu Reeves should play Half-Life 2 (2, Funny)

RsG (809189) | more than 9 years ago | (#10932319)

That's not true! Keanu Reeves has at least two facial expressions (two and a half if he grows a beard). :-)

halo is a no no (1)

hammurderer (819640) | more than 9 years ago | (#10931061)

Halo 2 = Overrated and not as good as HL2 I have played both and finnished each of the games and Halo 2 is not as good as HL2 Halo 2 starts the same way the first halo did and needless to say I was not impressed microsoft ran out of idas for stories so they just substituted a generic save the world story which was BS. while HL2 has an amasing story that keeps you guessing. I guess what I am trying to say is that I prefer substance in a game over no substance i suppose that would be a good idea because I like to actually play a game that requires some form of thinking. So in conclusion HL2=Good Halo2=Overrated and not as good Thankyou

Re:halo is a no no (1)

cpm-stick (827074) | more than 9 years ago | (#10935151)

I am in the same ballpark as you but for different reasons and not as extreme. I loved HL2 for its ambiguity, its magical-realism, its foreshadowing, everything. Its a superb movie and I am the protagonist. But there are no cut-scenes where the background is filled in for me to understand. Nope. I have to figure it all out on my own. It is me who does everthing. I figure that is why they didnt add Gordon's hands driving or his legs walking, because they want you to be the character, not some model. For Halo 2, I beat it just yesterday, and the most annoying thing about it was that I spent half of my time being confused. I kept getting lost. Everything looked the same. Sure, places like some houses in HL2 on the coast were used twice, but no house had the same experience or zombie waiting inside to eat me. The plot in Halo 2 was jumpy, and I can figure that there is much more to come, especially with the I Love Bees stuff going on, but the plot did not appeal to me for whatever reason. Especially the voice acting of Cortana, I did not like that. Master Chief was good though. Sorry for the rant.

Where exacly is this update? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 9 years ago | (#10931166)

Ah, the wonders of Steam. People have been talking about this update for days, yet the last update listed in Steam for me is August 26, 2004.

Gamerankings and HL2 (1, Troll)

Khuffie (818093) | more than 9 years ago | (#10931745)

Firstly, as others have pointed out, the longer a game stays in Gamerankings the lower its score gets. In fact earlier Half-Life 2 was even higher in Gameranking's all all time best [gamerankings.com] . It slowly went down to 5th, and it might even slip further. As to whoever said Gamerankings is skewed towards PC results, look at that list: there's like 3 PC games in the all time top 20...

As for Half-Life 2, frankly, I was disappointed. The on-rails gameplay is boring, there aren't that many opportunities to go 'off-rail' and when you do, it's usually blocked and you have to backtrack. There was only one genuine moment where I went "OMG! THIS IS SO FRIGGIN' COOL" (when the dog joined you towards the end...). In all honesty, the game seems more like a very long tech demo than anything that will hold my interest for long. And heck, if it wasn't for the gravity gun, the game would suck...

Plus, I really miss being able to smack your enemy with your weapon...I think there should be a law that all FPS incorporate that feature...I'm even trying to do it in MP2 now...

As for realism? Sure, the game's all nice and pretty and the physics are awesome, but in some aspects it seems that Valve's still living in the 20th century, not the 21st:

  • The in-game loading...no game should have loading nowadays, especially not one that claims to be ultra realistic, and especially not Half-Life 2, which thrives on immersing you into the environment. As soon as you hit that 'Loading' screen, which can take over a minute (2200+, 1 gig ram, radeon 9700 pro), you're immediately yanked right out of wherever you were. It's ridiculous.
  • You look down...what do you see? Oh wait...I HAVE NO LEGS! In realistic environments people have legs. Many FPS' incorporated that 'feature'...why not valve? It would sure make it look much better.
  • When you drive a vehicle...oh wait! IT DRIVES ITSELF! Seriously...how did they let this one go by? Where's the guy's hands? How's the vehicle driving itself? Another area where it takes you away from the 'realistic' environments.
  • The startup loading. Here's the process: launch steam, wait for it to login (which can take a minute sometimes), if steam needs to update, it'll update itself, even if you just want to play. Then, 'preparing to play Half-Life 2', which can take another minute. Then Loading the damn menu (ya, you can put -console in the launch options...but if you can load the game faster, WHY NOT SET IT AS DEFAULT?!). Then load your save...and you better hope you're not at the end of your current 'level', cuz if you step further, you'll hit another loading screen. Weeeeeeeee.

I just wanted to point out that I'm not just complaining for the heck of it. It's just that Half-Life 2 was set out to be something revolutionary, something no other game would come close to, but in that aspect, it failed. It's still a fun game, but I don't think it's what Valve was trying to achieve.

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