August 2012 – General Chat

1st August 2012

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

Haven’t gone on holiday?

Want to chat about general topics? This is the place to do that.

In the comments of this post, you can talk about anything you want, although I’d prefer if we avoided sex, politics, religion and spiders.

All comments are retroactively moderated. It’s more or less a family site, so please bear that in mind.

You don’t even need to be a registered member to comment on this, or any other post!

Also remember, that every comment with a link has to be approved by me, please don’t try to bypass that control.

I’ll get us started every month with a topic, but don’t expect me to keep the conversation going – that’s up to all the readers. And don’t think it has to stay on that topic either – pretty much anything goes. We can even have multiple topics being discussed.

This month’s image is of some Boids from Half-Life.


  1. So, Valve have updated the Steam Subscriber Agreement.

    I notice that the EU users now have a different agreement and I wonder if that’s to do with the recent ruling about not being able to resell games.

    Anybody know?

    Also, what happens if you bought a game while in the EU but you normally live outside?

    There’s also the provision that Valve may pay for costs of a small claims court, even if they win, which is kinda cool. But you can’t have class actions any more. Can’t believe I would ever take Valve to court over a few games, but perhaps if I bought hundreds, then maybe I would.


    1. Herr_Alien

      I think most of the courts will dismiss the “no class action suit” clauses.
      It’s a pity seeing Valve taking the same stance as Sony (and later on Microsoft) regarding class action suits.

      As for second hand games on Steam – I think the implementation will be some sort of link/button somehow buried in the UI – no quick and easy implementation for this one.

      1. MisterAddy

        So are you saying that they have to give us an option to resell games? That could have some interesting implications.

        1. Herr_Alien

          It’s a EU legislation thinggie, it doesn’t apply for US. Even so, I’m not sure about the deadline that has to be met by digital distributors, so don’t start looking for the ‘sell” button just yet.

    2. Ade

      Also, what happens if you bought a game while in the EU but you normally live outside?

      Well you shouldn’t lie about your location in order to get games cheaper in another country 🙂

      1. Who said anything about lying. What if you were travelling while the sale was on? Isn’t that’s one of the benefits of using Steam to be able to login from anywhere?

        1. Ade

          I doubt that’s a plausible scenario in the first place. Ask support if you really wanna know the answer.
          But I would just see it like you lend your account to someone in another country, change location settings in Steam, make a purchase then that someone gives you control back.

          1. I doubt that’s a plausible scenario in the first place.

            I did it.

            1. I think it’s supposed to mean your country of residence, not necessarily your physical location.

              And this could have some interesting implications, especially here in the US. The MAFIAA and others have been trying to criminalize their customers for decades, and they’re close to realizing their dreams–closer than we think. We get alerts on attempts by these thieves to buy votes and legislation on almost a weekly basis now, and they’re creeping closer and closer to eliminating any choice we have in what we watch/listen/play.

              Hopefully, this helps the consumers” cause…

  2. Some news about badminton players being disqualified from the Olympics: Report 1 and Report 2.

    Personally, I think this is really unfair. It’s a fault of the tournament’s design that the players have no incentive to play seriously. If they do actually uphold the ban, then all sprinters who ease up in the final metres of the qualifying rounds should also be banned.

    By changing the system this could be avoided.

    What do you think?

    1. MisterAddy

      I thought that it was stupid to use those tactics, but I believe they weren’t actually breaking the rules so they shouldn’t be punished for it. Surely it is the design of the tournament that is to blame and they can’t be punished for using it to their advantage.

      1. Greenman

        It is against the rules though, they were deemed to be acting in a manner detrimental to the sport and “not using best efforts” to win the match.
        Let’s not forget there are spectators involved whom have paid good money to see these events, it’s ridiculous.

        1. IS there Olympics there for the spectators or the competitors? Imagine there was nobody in the arena, would it matter then. perhaps the organisers need to be deemed to be acting in a manner detrimental to the sport by making it so that losing is more beneficial than winning.

          1. Greenman

            That’s academic to be honest, there ARE spectators. Either way it’s just not in the spirit of the game or the Olympics, playing to lose is not beneficial at any time as their disqualification proves.

            1. I think it was a necessary move. The Chinese in particular have been cheating the rules pretty regularly, and it’s high time they got busted and sent packing.

              They (and any other nation) need to realize that cheating is not allowed or tolerated by any civilized nations or peoples, and to act accordingly.

              1. I don’t see it as cheating. I see it as a fault of the tournaments design. Any system that rewards losing, which is what this one does, is at fault.

                There is no benefit to them playing to win – that’s the real issue here for me.

                Maybe they have been cheating in others ways, but I don’t know anything about that.

                I don’t see this as any different from a sprinter slowing down at the end of a race if he knows he/she has won or at least qualified.

                1. Greenman

                  A sprinter slowing down near the end of a race, knowing he/she has won is trying to conserve energy, they’re not trying to manipulate the draw or whatever.
                  And again, it was not more beneficial to lose as they were disqualified after being warned about it numerous times. They would have been much better served just playing.

            2. I don’t think it’s academic. The games could still happen without spectators. Next we’ll get to the point of American Football, where the time between plays is determined by the TV stations.

  3. Duke

    oh yeah, it’s that olympic whatsit going on isn’t it…that’s where people all over the world get points and stuff for keeping fit and not gaining unnecessary weight and get clapped for doing it…oh, hang on, that’s weightwatchers….I don’t watch much TV…

    1. Jim_Partridge

      Its stopping me from getting to work. I am not a happy bunny…

      There are hundreds of these pencil necks standing around trying to tell me how to complete a journey I do twice every week day.

      I know its a once in a lifetime thing but dear god I wish they’d all sod off home again…

      1. Agreed!
        Imagine the fun you could have, high up – out of a little window, with a good set of sniping sights…

  4. Hec

    Hey wassUP Phillip??, I just have a question for you, have you played the “No Exit” Mod for HL1??, I played it recently and I think was cool, also this other question, Are you going to upload the recent release “Aberration” mod for HL2?? I am also playing that one, seems to have an interesting proposal in story terms..,

    So any other guy have heard and play aboout this 2 mods??’

    1. Yes, I keep meaning to add Aberration, but some other admin task always pops up. I’ll get to it soon, I promise.

      No Exit is new to me, I’ll check it out.

      1. Hec

        Oh ok, sunds cool, yep No exit is cool, appears a new ennemy from a very well known classic SCIFI movie I think that new ennemy is the best of that mod….

    2. “No Exit” is indeed a very nice SP mod for HL1, it should be added here whenever Phillip has the time to do so, after reading Hec’s comment I searched the web for it and played it, very nice!
      It can be found at fileplanet.

  5. CoRuJa

    i wonder why Valve have never released the source code for Half-Life: Source, there’s still the source code available for HL1 (GoldSrc) and HL2 (the last which was released after the Orange Box), but no signs that they’ll ever release for that game (HL:S).

    1. The source code of HL1 and HL2 have not been released. You might be thinking of their SDK’s.

  6. Any news on the Black Mesa mod?

    1. Unq

      There is now: part 1 is releasing September 14th, which is all the way up to Lambda Core.

      1. Gypsy_Jim

        They’ve updated the site frontpage with a count down clock……Woot!

    1. Looks like they did a fantastic job!

      Well done, NASA!

    2. For sure for sure! I just don’t think they’re coming too clean on the real mission – which is bloody rocks again, like the last 2 rovers. It’s a tad disingenuous to say they’re “searching for life”. If it’s there, it’s going to be subsurface, and not shallow either. That pathetic little drill is less than 5cm long. There’s been a study on radiation penetration into the Martian soil with depth, and basically you can’t expect a couple of cm to get you anywhere where organics have not been fried over many millions of years.

      What’s needed is robust excavation. I’m disappointed they didn’t mount a honking great telescopic drill under Curiosity. I’m also a fan of sending droids down those big holes into the caves. Of course, it’s tough because the air’s so thin, and seeing as antigravity hasn’t been invented yet…

      The HL2 spy droid, plus manhacks to shake things up, would be perfect 🙂

  7. This is not the right place to post questions about mods.

    You are more likely to get your questions answered on the Poke 646 page itself.

    You’ll need to tell us more though. Stuff like whether you are using Steam, what happens when you try to run it etc.

  8. Nice piece on the BBC today: London 2012: 20 lesser-spotted things of the Olympics so far.

    I certainly didn’t know about the stamps – that’s cool!

    1. MisterAddy

      It’s impressive how quickly they make the stamps. I also found the bit about the colour pink interesting because I’ve been volunteering in a bright pink uniform for the past two weeks!

  9. Ok, this gets a bit convoluted, but bear with me as I want the originators (not me) to get proper credit, plus I believe that (if true) this is a truly newsworthy event.
    I was reading the PP Replay Experience Experiment, and I learned of Kelly Bailey the head honcho at Valve for all things musical, accomplished author of the various excellent HL1 tunes and ultimately responsible guy for HL sound effects. Then at I read he had LEFT Valve (boooooo!), also that he was the face for Gordon Freeman (yaaay.. spitting image, too!) and following a link from there, I got to where I read a ground-breaking news article that..

    Valve are currently developing a new game engine, Source2!!!

    ..and it is speculated that EP3 is so overdue as it is being written for/integrated with the new Source2 engine. There is also talk that the new engine maintains compatibility, or something similar – basically that applications should be able to be ported across without excessive pain, good news for current content!
    Please note, this is just passed on – I can verify nothing, but it looks as though it’s legit. as people are discovering goodies labelled specifically for Source2 buried in all sorts of places [read article].

    EP3 on a new engine! Will it be all wobbly, and creaky? Will it (Microsoft style) consist of more patches & sticky plasters, after a week, than original code?


    Scour for info, please add your findings…

    Valvetime link : link (Kelly Bailey) :

    1. Interesting, and that Gordon Freeman Has Left The Building. Hey, sounds like a good title for a new mod.

    1. Can’t get any sound atm, will have to try later.

      1. ikar

        Do I understand correctly, that he retells the story of HL?
        AAAAAaa… He speaks so fast that I did not have time to understand the 7/10 of words

        News: Valve removed from SFM all references to Source 2

        1. Yes, he does, but with his own particular slant on it. Don’t worry – you’re not missing anything ground-breaking.

          SFM=Source Film Maker? Interesting, I wonder if that means it’s true, why else would Gabe & Co. take such overt action? Seemingly meaningful HL relics (e.g. Borealis vtf’s) have been left behind in all sorts of places, but in fact are red herrings. Might Source2 be a different story…?

  10. More Olympic Oddities here. Again, there are some interesting ones. I like the idea about the rowers respecting each other and that being one of the reasons why they don’t have a podium.

    And it mentions the safety pin may have been invented by the Greeks in the 14th Century BC!

    1. Crafty lads, those Greeks. Mind you, I’m guessing a freezing wind blowing up your flapping toga’s a pretty good motivational force… lightly chilled nuts, anyone?

    1. Yup. An exercise celebrating & rewarding pointless futility. A comment on our times, really: let’s forget Tesla, Marconi, Fleming, Turing, Brunel, Curie, who were they? Instead, let’s all give a big cash “Well Done” to some nameless spotty t*t who can spell words backwards on his mobile “phone. Says it all, doesn’t it? At least he says he’s spending the money on his education; let’s hope it buys him many copies of “How Many Beans Makes Five?”.

      Abandon hope…

  11. Survey – Does size matter?

    After a little PC housekeeping, I just checked the size of my “Valve” folder – I’m a fairly ‘light” gamer, and mine’s 71GB!

    How big is yours?

    1. 108 GB
      and counting. 154 entries in SourceMods for starters.

  12. Phillip,have you seen the new half life 2 mod lost in the snow yet?Its on mod db.It would make an excellent addition to the site!

    1. Yes, I downloaded it yesterday and plan to add it as soon as I finish the stuff I am behind on.

  13. I have a big beef about the flashlight.

    No, not the battery lifetime thing (Dr. Kleiner’s working on that). It’s that, ever since Steam broke hundreds of old mods with the new API (or at least, that time seems to correlate), the flashlight doesn’t seem to work properly, or if it does, not all the time. When it doesn’t work, the illumination is weak or nonexistent. The bar showing battery capacity is reduced from a thick bar to a thin line.

    The result is that many mods become unplayable during their dark sections. The latest two posted on Single-Player Ep2 mods are a case in point. Could this be my antiquated nVidia GeForce 7900GS? Or the video settings? Or some quirk of the screen resolution setting? Whatever it is, I haven’t yet found a fix.

    1. Ade

      Screenshot or dem/vid? I don’t understand what your problem is..
      I always have HUD issues like items showing only half on the screen when picking stuff up for the inventory, is that tangent to your case in the least bit?

      1. This is during play and hitting “F” in the usual way. I was hoping that at least a few would recognise this problem and be encouraged to talk about possible fixes.

  14. MisterAddy

    Black Mesa is out on the 14th!

    1. RossBondReturns

      I cannot wait to do a Let’s Play of that puppy!

      I’ve got the Soundtrack on repeat.

      Pity there won’t be a new September chat for a while.

      P.S. if you want to kill some time between now and then with a High Quality release the makers of CUBE have released the First Chapter of Hatch 18.

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