Half-Life 2: Episode Two: Riding Shotgun

Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3

Having acquired transportation, Gordon and Alyx proceed at top speed to White Forest. They discover a radio tower and Alyx decides to try and contact White Forest to warn of the impending attack.

While establishing power to the transmitter, Hunters arrive and ambush them. Gordon fights the Hunters directly for the first time and manages to defeat them.

Alyx and Gordon resume trying to contact White Forest base but are unable as Advisors appear to be blocking the transmission.
Continuing, a crashed Advisor pod is discovered by the road. Alyx and Gordon soon encounter the telepathic attacks of an Advisor.

They investigate a nearby barn and discover an Advisor encamped inside it. Alyx exposes its life support system and Gordon damages it with the Gravity Gun. The Advisor emerges from its mechanical cocoon and demonstrates its telekinetic powers by pinning Gordon and Alyx to a wall.

It appears unfamiliar with its environment, as it probes first a barrel and a dead rebel before nearly killing Gordon. However, further damage to its life support system forces it to flee. Alyx and Gordon fight off a Combine ambush and escape a Hunter-Chopper which arrives at the barn.

Gordon and Alyx are pursued by the chopper to the next Resistance outpost, the car’s engine giving out as it breaks through a barricade at the entrance. Gordon defeats the chopper by firing its mines back at it, and the rebels at the outpost offer to repair the car.

Screenshots

Click on the thumbnails below to open a 1024 pixel wide image.
WARNING: The screenshots contain spoilers.

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Achievements

I won’t be covering the Episode Two achievements in the same way as I did in the Half-Life 2 TREE event, because they are less chapter based. However, the CombineOverWiki has nice list that is very useful.

The Replay Experience Experiment

This post is part of the The Replay Experience Experiment event. This is a chance to replay all the Half-Life games and discuss them based on our experiences since we first played them.

Hat Tip

The intro and trivia text are taken from the CombineOverWiki, a fan-supported, editable wiki covering the Half-Life series of games.

Walkthrough
A Complete Half-Life 2: Episode Two Walkthrough

On the left is a complete text walkthrough for Half-Life 2: Episode Two.

It has been written by Stanley E. Dunigan and updated with all the tricks and tips from PlanetPhillip.Com readers.

It is in PDF format, meaning you can open it directly in modern browsers or download it and print it.

(Left-click to open and right-click to save)

Do Not Own This Game?

You can purchase Half-Life 2: Episode Two directly through Steam and could be playing in within moments, depending on your internet connection.

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7 Comments

  1. Having just left my favourite level, my expectation was naturally low. I had a vague notion of what was coming next, but felt it was more about ammo caches than anything else – don’t ask me why.

    The encounter with the Advisor was a complete shock to me and I had totally forgotten about that. But the train yard area was definitely familiar and I fear I missed so many things that I better go back and play that when I have time.

    As much as I love those types of levels, I always feel I missed too much and I hate that.

    This level is really two separate sections neatly joined together but in effect they are so different.

    It’s a great level, but the second half outshines the first by far.

    Playtime 29 minutes

  2. JG

    See, I’m kind of the opposite. For me, the radio compound was one of the most memorable parts of the forest for a couple reasons.

    For one, Alyx feels genuinely vulnerable. There is a shaky determination to her voice that she is not going to be taken again and that this battle is personal now. Usually, Alyx contributes nothing to a battle besides acting as a second gun. Here, it feels like there are stakes and I actually care about her.

    Second, I absolutely adore the Hunter AI. I still can’t get over how you can drop these fellows into a level and watch them go – flanking, ambushing, charging, firing from a distance – it’s the best AI in the game as far as I’m concerned and here, we get to see how sneaky it can be in this cover-heavy environment.

    The Advisor I’m less a fan of, mostly because that… “tongue”… is humorously phallic and kind of undermined the creepiness factor, although I like the whole cocoon thing. It’s one of the better examples of the way the Combine fuse their machinery into existing buildings.

  3. I’d forgotten how much fun that railway sequence is,,
    I liked this level so much I went straight into Under The Radar,, sorry Phillip!

  4. Unq

    Honestly I think this chapter might just top the previous one. It’s essentially a vehicle level, but it feels very different from Half-Life 2’s chapters Water Hazard and Highway 17, which were each enjoyable in their own right. This chapter mixes up very memorable encounters in outposts where you’re not driving with an exciting chase sequence.

    So finally after Valve hinting at the hunter even back in Episode 1, and then watching one tear up Alyx in the opening, we are ambushed by them. It’s handled a little differently here than most enemy introductions – this ambush is tough indeed, since hunters are strong and you face 4 (?) of them in your very first meeting. These guys are no pushovers, especially on hard, and make pretty good adversaries.

    Soon after is the also-memorable meeting with the advisor, where we feel totally helpless. It’s a very well done and eerie encounter, complete with psychic disturbances leading up to the scene. I found it quite unnerving to meet a Half-Life enemy that can’t be dealt with using bullets and rockets. I still wonder what will happen with them in HL3.

    Then comes the frantic chopper chase. I don’t really think there’s much to be missed in this section – the designers know you’re going to be driving fast so there isn’t much that’s off the beaten path. Notice how they help guide you to the right path with the placement of Lambda caches. Finally we reach the chopper battle which can be tough if you get low on health and caught in the open. Notice also how flinging the bombs at the chopper is very much practice for using the Magnussen device on the striders later in the game.

    In all, a varied level that consistently picks up the pace leading to a nice finale battle.

    Playtime: 42 minutes

  5. Very contrasting with previous chapters, Riding Shotgun start a new part of the game. Because we drive a car we must think about Highway 17, but it is completely different. We are now in forest and mountain instead of seaboard. Surprising to see so much different places in a so small area.

    This is a very amazing chapter, first with the battle against 5 Hunters, coming right after a little puzzle. At this moment we can see that Alyx has recover her strength and fight like in Nova Prospekt.

    The Advisors scene is very important, for next events and probably future games. Forbid the player to move accurate greatly Advisor introducing. It is a powerful enemies, impossible to fight, at least for now. A very memorable scene that still impress me today.

    Finally is the railroad ride. Purchased by a chopper I remembered Water Hazard. It is shorter but funny with many zombies to knock over. When arrived to the Rebel base the idea of throwing back the bombs to Chopper was not evident. If I didn’t read achievements before I probably looked for an RPG or something.

    CAUGHT MY EYES

    A so high antenna for a so bad link ?

    G-MAN SIGHTING

    Nope

    DEATHS

    None

    PLAYTIME

    21 minutes

  6. Ade

    Using unbreakable wood til the hunters come round to break it, that’s something I didn’t expect from Valve. They always offer a good fight but this time round they didn’t represent a real threat to me, maybe I’ve fought 1 too many in all these years.
    But wow did you see what that advisor did to that barrel?!
    I remember it took me a while to learn this new mechanic with the chopper, I really felt helpless without an RPG and none of the rebels gave any hint.

    Playtime: 19 minutes

  7. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xlJfq_eV_ls

    This level is basically just like highway 17, except that there are new enemies and it’s shorter. Too many cutscenes for me to enjoy, but the final fight with the chopper almost felt new. Still felt like the lighthouse battle, but whatever, it’s always fun.

    I don’t really know what else to say…. Those advisors look invincible :0

    Five words or less review
    A pickaxe > a thousand cars

    Deaths:
    none, but I didn’t try to skip the advisor cutscene, that could have killed me.

    Playtime:
    9 minutes 33 seconds 375 milliseconds

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