RTSL game coming to Steam!

Right, so I suspect you are A: pretty excited and B: a little confused by the title. Hopefully, after you have finished reading this post you will still be excited but not confused.

I will explain as much as I can, but please bear in mind, that some things will remain secret for various reasons.

Essentially, near the end of this year or the beginning of next year, we will be releasing a compilation of the best maps entered for the mapping challenges over the last few years.

Let me address the use of the word “Game”, it seems that currently the release will be a game in the sense that it will not require the purchase or installation of ANY other Half-Life game.

26th May 2018 2 Comments

A Place in the West – An Interview with Ross and Michael.

The range of creations based on the Half-Life series never ceases to amaze me. Of course, that’s probably true of many IP franchises but Half-Life is the only one I am interested in.

I can’t say I have always been a fan of comics and am a little embarrassed to say that the movie “Unbreakable” was the first time I had really thought about their societal impact and influence.

Even as a child, I never really bought comics, so it was with some trepidation that I started to read A Place in the West. I won’t lie – it took a while for me to become interested and I did find it tough going at times, but I will say that I enjoyed what I read, even if I didn’t agree with all the creative choices.

I actually printed all the chapters and read them like a tradition comic and I actually liked that more than reading them on-screen (call me old-fashioned if you want).

That said, I have absolutely no hesitation at all in recommending reading the comic. The first chapter is free but the following ones are much better and at a very fair price of 1.99 Euros.

Below is a brief interview I conducted with the creators of the comic and I would like to thank them for taking the time to reply to my questions.

All the images below are taken from the first chapter.

So, either before or after reading the interview, go visit the A Place in the West Steam page and get reading.

26th May 2018 No Comments

Multi-hour Fund Raising Stream This Saturday

This Saturday, the 19th May, I will be doing a multi-hour livestream to raise money for the 2-018 Prize Fund.

Hunt Down the Freeman will be started and maybe even finished, Mapping will also feature as well as a couple of Half-Life 1 mods.

Start time is 12pm Central European Time and it will be on the RTSL YouTube channel: https://gaming.youtube.com/c/Planetphillipcom/live

I’ll be regularly asking for your hard-earned money, but know that it doesn’t go to me but to the entrants of the mapping challenges.

There will be game giveaways at least every hour, including some HDtF Steam keys.

Let me know if you have any questions and I hope to see you there.

17th May 2018 2 Comments

Site Feature: Collections

I am pleased to announce a new feature on the site.

It is called Collections and are user-created lists of releases.

I have created a video explaining how they work, which you can see below.

Collections can be viewed via the EXPLORE menu item and full details can be found on the ABOUT Page.

In summary, only registered and logged in users can create Collections but every visitor can see them.

As always, if you have any questions or feedback, please don’t hesitate to contact me.

My thanks go to Jan for coding the feature and Koneko for testing it.

13th May 2018 5 Comments

May 2018 – General Chat

As I was lying in bed this morning, thinking about getting up or thinking about staying, a new feature for the site popped into my head.

I’m going to call it “Reference Gallery” and it will contain reference images from HL1 mods. I’ll split it into a few sub-galleries: Ceilings, Corridors, Large Arenas, Set Pieces and Science Baby!

I’ll start building the framework pages this week and slowly add images to each section. Let me know if you feel I should have other sub-galleries. I did consider creating an account on an external social media site just for this but want to keep everything hosted on RTSL.


Here we are. Getting closer to summer. I still haven’t finished Wolfenstein The New Order – shame on me. Who knows, MAYBE I will this month.

Found a mod I have been meaning to play for ages, so that takes presidents (Thank Mr. Trump for that spelling), plus a bunch of other stuff related to the site.

What about you? Got any big plans for the month of possibilities?

BTW, the image is taken from Dark Interval – Canals

1st May 2018 15 Comments

Special Quiz Giveaway 2018

In the past I was pretty bad about keeping records of which games I had been given and which games I had given away. I do things differently now, but I have a file with a list of games that may, and this is REALLY important, MAY have been given away.

The only way to find out is to actually put the codes into Steam (some in Origin) and see what happens.

Therefore, this quiz giveaway is held on the basis that all or possibly none of the keys I have will work. By entering, you accept that possibility. No subsitute games will be offered even if none of the keys work.

Yes, this is pretty cheeky or me and yes, if they don’t work, that’s pretty shitty on the winner – but as Gordon says “”.

Here are the games:

1st May 2018 1 Comment

Untold Stories – Fan Fiction Event

“Were you the only ones on that train?

Overwatch stopped our train in the woods and took my husband for questioning. They said he’d be on the next train. I’m not sure when that was. They’re being nice, though, letting me wait for him.”

What happened to her husband? What happens to her? That is just one untold story and Half-Life 2 is full of untold stories. Stories that need telling. Stories that you should tell.

For this fan fiction event, I would like you to write a about any supporting character from Half-Life 2.

Your story must be no more than 1500 words.

The story can be serious, comedic, scary, light-hearted or whatever genre or combination you desire.

Entry Deadline

Please send your entry, via email, either as a txt attachment or even written in the email itself, to runthinkshootlive@gmail.com, not later than 11:59pm UTC Monday 28th May 2018.


All entries must be Safe For Work.
All entries MUST be in English (sorry).
Authors may enter as many separate stories as they wish.
Phillip’s decision is final regarding winners.
No purchase necessary.
Other weird rules may be added later.


I’ll be giving away a few Steam games. the more entries I get the more games I will give.

Other Fan Fiction Events

I would like to encourage ALL readers to take a look at the previous Fan Fiction Events. There are some great entries in there.

28th April 2018 12 Comments

Special Challenge – NostalgiaVille

Half-Life 2 has been around for longer than 13 years, but many will agree that the game has still not lost its charm. However, as Episode 1 and 2 came out, people switched their focus to the new environments and gameplay that were introduced. NostalgiaVille seeks to balance out the scale by re-introducing the classic environments of Half-Life 2 in the modern day.

In this challenge, you are given 2 months to create a level set in the early chapters of Half-Life 2 (think City 17 up to and including the Coast, however we find that the City and Canal sections in their pre-Uprising state are the least prominent within usual challenge entries). Don’t feel pressured to work for the whole 2 months, as that would mean a high risk of burning out, but consider the possibilities for the scope and scale of your entry.

A big focus of NostalgiaVille is, well, Nostalgia. The player should be reminded of the time when they first played Half-Life 2, and levels should, to some degree, feel familiar. So feel free to include HL2 Easter eggs, references, and maybe even altered segments of the original chapters in your entries. However, with time, technology and level design practices have improved.

We would like the early Half-Life 2 environments to be used and a level of familiarity in the level design to be kept, but gameplay can be either similar to the way it was in the original game or changed to add new concepts into the old environments, thus combining the new and old in your entry. Keep in mind that even if your map follows the same ideas from the environments in Half-Life 2, it should be polished and up-to-date with modern standards in other design aspects.


The deadline for submission is 11pm UTC Sunday 24th June 2018


The top 3 entrants will win cash prizes as follows, all paid via PayPal:

  • First place: $300
  • Second place: $200
  • Third place: $100

27th April 2018 13 Comments


for Half-Life 2: Episode Two

Without the Gravity Gun, Half-Life 2, its episodes, and many many mods would be very different. It was revolutionary and a LOT of fun to play with.

This challenge features the gravity gun, and adds some new functionality which was optional for mappers to use.

You play through a variety of settings and ideas.


Total Downloads: 86717th April 2018
36 Comments and 8 recommendations, 4 say "Play It Later"