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Half-Life 2: Aftermath Delayed

Zonk posted more than 8 years ago | from the back-to-playing-with-antlions dept.

First Person Shooters (Games) 29

exdeath writes " announced that Valve's follow-up to last years acclaimed shooter Half-Life 2 will not be releasing in November 2005 as originally planned. From the post: 'Just wanted to give you a quick update on Aftermath, specifically its ETA. We're working very hard to finish this new episode for HL2, however, its going to take us a bit more time to get it into top shape. As such, the target release for this one is now Feb/March of next year.'" Confirmed by Valve. Ensaddening.

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Is anyone surprised? (1)

James_Aguilar (890772) | more than 8 years ago | (#14011673)

Even if Aftermath is released when they are now saying it will be, Valve would still be doing better that its recent track record -- that is, it will be the first time that Valve has released a product less than nine months late in the past two years.

That said, I have to wonder why anyone is surprised. I would be surprised to the point of speechlessness if it was out before the summer.

I'll give them the benefit of the doubt. (2, Insightful)

WidescreenFreak (830043) | more than 8 years ago | (#14011734)

Considering that I still want to scream like a grandmother when I think of the Ultima: Ascension rush-to-market debacle, I have absolutely no problems with Valve taking the time that they need to get the product done right the first time. There are far too many games out there that were delivered with a "just get it shipped and we'll fix it later" attitude. See Battlefield 2 for a recent example of that. I've give Valve some time if they feel that they need it as long as I get effective code that doesn't crash because I looked up at the wrong time.

It could be worse, you know. If it was called "Half-Life 2: In Search of Duke Nuke'Em", then we would be assured that we'd never see it. In this case, however, I'll give them the benefit of the doubt.

*blink* (4, Funny)

Z0mb1eman (629653) | more than 8 years ago | (#14011674)

I feel like I've stepped into some kind of time warp...

This FEELS like a dupe, even if it isn't :p

Re:*blink* (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14011723)

Count it! We have a new winner for the "Most Useless Post Evar" award.

Re:*blink* (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 8 years ago | (#14011894)

So it's a tie with yours, then. :P

I can see it already: (1)

gsonic (885510) | more than 8 years ago | (#14011693)

The final boss will be... Duke Nukem!

proper conjugation (1)

CoffeeJedi (90936) | more than 8 years ago | (#14011744)

i think you mean "ensadenating"

if we were to keep it in spirit with the original ilovebees joke []

Re:proper conjugation (1)

CoffeeJedi (90936) | more than 8 years ago | (#14011768)

just realized that you were at least partially right with your use of 2 d's

should be ensaddenating

yes, its quarter to 5 on a friday afternoon, and i really really really need to leave work

Aftermath (0, Redundant)

SafteyMan (860733) | more than 8 years ago | (#14011808)

As long as it comes out before Duke Nukem Forever i'll be happy.

Re:Aftermath (3, Insightful)

servognome (738846) | more than 8 years ago | (#14014007)

Jesus will return before Duke Nukem Forever

Well damn. (2, Informative)

oskard (715652) | more than 8 years ago | (#14011820)


Fuckin A it is. I have to say, I'm not surprised. But you know what? Half-Life 2 was well worth the wait. In fact I felt that it was at least two years ahead of its time, a bargain for 2004. I know Aftermath will not just be an expansion pack, and will dig deeper in the story line just like Blue-Shift did to the first episode.

Its also hard to be upset at Valve since they are promising me de_nuke and a few new models for CS:Source this month.

Re:Well damn. (1)

Kazzahdrane (882423) | more than 8 years ago | (#14012461)

Blue-Shift? The only thing that kept that game from being "just" an expansion pack was that it wasn't actually an expansion at all since it was standalone. I don't regret buying it, and I enjoyed playing it for the couple (yes, about 2 or maybe 3 at a push) of hours that I spent playing it, but it's not a good example. Opposing Force, the first Half-Life expansion, now that's a good example of an expansion that went beyond just adding some more content. Experience the story from one of the other sides, squad-based gameplay at parts and new weapons etc. Also a fair number of episodes, takes quite a few hours to play through. OF also had its own multiplayer component and was great value, especially for people who wanted to know more about the storyline of the HL world. This is the first Half-Life expansion pack to continue the story of the main game, so it will be interesting how Valve go about that. I always liked how there were three Half-Life games from the original generation that all took place in the same general location at the same time but were very different experiences. Of course, I'll happily pay for more levels of Half-Life 2 from Valve so if that's all Aftermath is I'd likely be very pleased nonetheless.

Re:Well damn. (1)

Some_Llama (763766) | more than 8 years ago | (#14030659)

"I know Aftermath will not just be an expansion pack, and will dig deeper in the story line just like Blue-Shift did to the first episode."

WHAAA?? On what are you basing this assumption? On the fact that HL2 had no discernable storyline, or that Blue shift did nothing to further the story other than rehash HL's story from a different perspective?

Do you work for Valve or something?

I've been playing nuke for about 5 years now, what are you waiting for? Them to fuck it up like they did with CS 1.6?

Amazing. Game developer's that still give dates (2, Interesting)

popo (107611) | more than 8 years ago | (#14011835)

How is it possible that we *haven't* learned this by now?

Companies that give release dates and stick to them, usually release buggy sub-par games.

Companies that have a steadfast policy of *not* publishing release dates (ie: Blizzard) and adopt a "we'll release it when its done" policy -- usually release great software.

The new middle ground of course, are companies like Bethesda and Valve who bravely make public statements and regularly push back titles.

(It should be noted that Bethsoft caved to MSFT on an Xbox Morrowind release date and the results were disastrous. It wasn't until the re-release a year later that players saw all those horrendous bugs fixed)

While pushing back a release date is the obviously responsible thing to do, it also pisses lots of people off. One wonders "why even offer release dates at all"?

IMHO Blizzard has got it right. "Its done when its done".

Re:Amazing. Game developer's that still give dates (3, Informative)

TychoCelchuuu (835690) | more than 8 years ago | (#14012172)

Valve learned its lesson. They no longer give specific days and they not that all their dates are always subject to change.

Re:Amazing. Game developers that still give dates (3, Informative)

DingerX (847589) | more than 8 years ago | (#14012783)

Well, because *this* is something fans have learned in the manner of the old saying:

I've been puking so long I'm starting to like it

Sorry man, but developers -- for all their artistic vision -- have very real budgets to keep. And, this may come as a surprise, but even in a speculative venture like a PC game, you can get a pretty decent estimate of how long it takes to develop something.

Why, then, is stuff perpetually late, or rushed to market?

Well, first, most titles aren't late or rushed. Most of them are on time and on budget. And most of them, most people wouldn't want to play. But they generate a steady budget. The others? Well, sure they're pushing the envelope. Why? Because they have a bunch of nuts at the helm who don't necessarily care about business. What happens when you pair those nuts with a distribution model? Bad things. Really bad things.

What do I mean?
Hell, when I set down to make something, I'm excited. I write the damn code, and it's fun and interesting. Then it's written. And I show it off, and folks want changes to the UI, or additional functionality, no matter how much of a pain in the ass. So I do that. Then I get the damn thing full of their functionality, and guess what? It's time to test it. And develop the game content to use the little engine, and test that. And mysteriously, the time from getting the idea to writing the initial draft of the code is pretty damn short. And to get myself through those dark hours, I convince myself that it's gonna work fine the first time, yeah sure.

But too many folks out there actually believe it will. Crap, man, I see so many otherwise respectable game companies issue "coming soon" or "imminent" release notices on software they obviously haven't even gotten to beta stage. Yet anyone with a brain schedules beta to last 3x longer than alpha.

You can predict how long a dev cycle will take, even with new hardware and questionable vendor support -- we now have several such generations of data available. And if you're in doubt, remember Scotty's advice from his TNG appearance.

So sure, give a date, and put it way down the road. Get funding till then and everything's good; better yet, only give a date to those who are funding you, and get plenty of funding. Only declare a release date when you've inked the deals with the distributors. Really, "buzz" and "viral marketing" is one thing; "letting my community manager feel cool" is entirely something else. Learn the difference.

But run your company so that you need to hit "miracle-coder" dates, and each project could sink you, and you won't be around for long.

I'm amazed how many clods out there don't follow these basic rules.

(scratches head, returns to fixing up the "trial balloon" he floated and the suits sold as a complete product to deliver in two months) errr... nevermind

This is probably because of... (1)

lobsterGun (415085) | more than 8 years ago | (#14011954)

No doubt this delay was caused by that source code theft they had last year.

Re:This is probably because of... (1)

Kazzahdrane (882423) | more than 8 years ago | (#14012419)

No doubt? The source code stolen was for Half Life 2, this is the expansion. Since the Aftermath date was announced long after Half Life 2 was released, I see no connection between its delay and the source code theft from well over a year ago.

Re:This is probably because of... (1)

Lacit (909742) | more than 8 years ago | (#14012638)

I think he meant it as a joke.

Re:This is probably because of... (1)

Idealius (688975) | more than 8 years ago | (#14012672)

it's called sarcasm -- that's what they blamed for the original release.

Re:This is probably because of... (1)

Kazzahdrane (882423) | more than 8 years ago | (#14012694)

Blamed with good reason. Read "Raising the Bar", the book behind the making of Half-Life 2 for a concise explanation of what the code theft did at Valve.

Re:This is probably because of... (1)

Idealius (688975) | more than 8 years ago | (#14019221)


you've given me absolutely no compelling reason to..

So, while we're waiting... (0, Offtopic)

Jamesie (615784) | more than 8 years ago | (#14012225)

Are there any decent mods out there?

I played the lost coast demo and minerva, can anyone recommend any others?

Also apart from posting a comment is there any other way to logout from slashdot?

Re:So, while we're waiting... (3, Insightful)

Ford Prefect (8777) | more than 8 years ago | (#14012408)

I played the lost coast demo and minerva, can anyone recommend any others?

How about the second part of MINERVA?


Oh, hang on - not finished yet. Sorry... ;-)

As for other maps, there's a couple around. I haven't played all that many, but there's some reviews here [] , more reviews here [] and another map here [] . There's a pretty cool total conversion here [] , but it's incredibly short and defiantly non-Half-Life 2.

There's also eleventy billion work-in-progress multiplayer mods with endless unskinned weapons renders and concept 'art' drawn in crayon; if you look really carefully you might find one that's actually been released...

Re:So, while we're waiting... (1)

ehvoy (696364) | more than 8 years ago | (#14013980)

Please hurry up, er wait, get it right...damnit. I loved part one, intense fight at the end, good job :). Bear with me, I'm jonesing and my Windows XP Half-Life 2 edition box isn't getting any use.

And they only just figured this out... (1)

emarkp (67813) | more than 8 years ago | (#14012370)

Of course, they knew they would be pushing the schedule out a quarter sooner than this week. The problem with Valve is that they wait to push their schedules until the current published schedule. Why don't they learn not to do this?

Nothing to fear (0, Redundant)

jasonwea (598696) | more than 8 years ago | (#14012477)

Don't worry folks, Duke Nukem can't be far away..

It's not the announcement that gets me mad... (1)

fujiman (912957) | more than 8 years ago | (#14013209)

It's the timing!

Really... waiting until NOVEMBER to announce it won't be ready in NOVEMBER?

And then saying you need another Five Months?

Only a company with very deep pockets could get away with that crap. They have, so they do.

Valve delaying a game (1)

RzUpAnmsCwrds (262647) | more than 8 years ago | (#14013326)

Valve delaying a game? Who would have thought!
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