Contest 1 Maps

for Half-Life

2nd April 2006


This is the collection of maps submitted as part of Valve’s VERC first ever competition:
Best use of a pop machine in an interactive sequence. Pop machine must die.
The thread describing things in detail can be found here: Chatbear Thread

Basic Details
  • Title: Contest 1 Maps
  • File Name: hl1-sp-contest-1-maps.7z
  • Original File Name:
  • Size : 8.18Mb
  • Author: Various
  • Date Released: 12 June 2001
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PlanetPhillip Note:

Below the images you will find the text from the, now dead, Verc contest page. ALL the maps listed below are included in the pack except hldungeons because it was never released. Only an image is available (included in the pack!). The images below are taken from the winning entry.

Contest #1 Results: The martyred pop machine.

Contest Description:
Best use of a pop machine in an interactive sequence. Pop machine must die. This is a contest to test creativity. Maps must include:

  • Some small type of problem which must be overcome.
  • A pop machine which must figure prominently in the solution.

Sounds simple. 🙂 In addition, I would prefer the maps be in single-player Half-Life or Opposing Force format. Maps don’t need to be large – just large enough to include the problem area. The prize will be everlasting recognition as the first contest winner at VERC. 🙂

  • posted: May 21
  • maps due: June 4, 11:59pm pacific time
  • winner announced: June 11

Below you will find the contest winner and a collection of some of the better entries from this contest. If you would like to download the complete bundle of maps listed below, click here.


  • POPulation by Grey Dog
    POPulation, by Grey Dog, is a great example of setting up obstacles that the player must think to overcome. In this map, you need to use several different pop machines to overcome simple problems. In addition, the map is put together quite well, and the you are never left wondering what you’re supposed to be doing.

Runners Up:

  • hldungeons by katgrrrl
    This was my favorite but it didn’t arrive in the correct format, unfortunately.
  • Rumble by Unquenque
    (includes source)This map, which takes place with the player being in a train car the entire time, has some of my favorite scripted sequences and events. The events involving the pop machine are put together very well and everything flows together quite smoothly.
  • Pop by Mr. Yuk
    (includes source)This map, featuring an alien-possessed pop machine, is darkly funny. Like the Rumble map, this also features a number of scripted sequences and events that flow together very well.
  • VERC Soda 1 by Delete_Me
    The resident VERC slacker comes through with a funny map featuring a power tripping posessed pop machine and plenty of VERC influence. This map features alternate endings, even accomodating cheaters (that’s my favorite ending).
  • Suicide Truck Driver by Jabyaeye
    In Jabyaeye’s map, the pop machine ends up a victim of what I will call Pop Rage. This rare phenomenon is illustrated quite handily in this map.
  • The Hood by Noodlehammer
    Noodlehammer’s map has you wanting to get into the peep show. Barney won’t let you in though. Perhaps he’s got something on his mind. Something… very… heavy.
  • Overfeed by MR
    Ever wonder what happens when you overfeed a gargantua? Well, it’s not really pretty. All that pop… oh… I just can’t talk about it.
  • Jash Pop by Jashiin
    It’s got pop machines and a giant mech. Neat!
  • Pop Contest by Worldcrafter
    (includes source)Worldcrafter’s map was interesting… reminded me of the oldschool adventure games. And there are jokes too!
  • Lada Pop by Nigel Keuther
    Nigel’s map features a clever puzzle and witty scientist banter.
Reader Recommendations
Avoid It!
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Play It Later
Play It Now!

2 recommendations, average score: 4.5 (out of 5), standard deviation: 0.25 (what's that?)
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  1. Unq

    The original page at the VERC has this url:

    The page is dead now, but you can search on to find the contest description and list of the winners.

  2. TheRipper
    Play It Later

    Nice. In as far as they are puzzles, I solved them all… except overfeed. Anybody got a hint?

  3. Play It Now!

    A collection of very original and creative maps centered around pop machines. Although some maps are very short (some are just a series of scripted sequences), others will definitely surprise you and make you think about how you’re going to use a particular pop machine. I guarantee that you’ve never experienced Half-Life pop machines like this before.

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