This chapter sees Gordon and Alyx fleeing through the city’s ruined, dark, and zombie-infested City 17 Underground as they continue to flee the city.
Alyx is trapped under a Combine Prisoner Pod with a restrained Stalker viciously attempting to break loose, relying on Gordon to set her free.
After escaping from the train, the duo fights through the rubble of dark, deserted, underground parking garages and tunnels, searching for a way to head up to the surface of the city.
In the process, they block off Antlion burrows, and battle various zombies in a pitch black environment, including zombified Combine soldiers, which were never seen during Half-Life 2.
These zombified soldiers, referred to as “Zombines” by Alyx, are a prominent sign that the Combine is losing control of City 17.
After Alyx opens the first EMP Field Gate, if the player zooms in on her face while standing next to her, she will nervously look away playing with her hair and then look up at the player, smiling.
She will do the same thing after leaving the underground in the next chapter, and again in Episode Two after opening the Radio Tower Base gate in Riding Shotgun.
Click on the thumbnails below to open a 1024 pixel wide image.
WARNING: The screenshots contain spoilers.
I won’t be covering the Episode One achievements in the same way as I did in the Half-Life 2 TREE event, because they are less chapter based. However, HLFallout.Net has an excellent guide that I can highly recommend.
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.
The intro and trivia text are taken from the CombineOverWiki, a fan-supported, editable wiki covering the Half-Life series of games.
On the left is a complete text walkthrough for Half-Life 2: Episode One.
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)
You can purchase Half-Life 2: Episode One directly through Steam and could be playing in within moments, depending on your internet connection.
Things start to get a little dark now and we are lead down into the depths of City 17.
We find ourselves in the middle of two pretty difficult challenges and the lift area certainly stretches your skills and tactics.
I found this whole chapter not very interesting really, but it’s hard to say why. The first battle, with the antlions, is very well done and not dark but I think I’m getting tired of blocking the holes with cars.
The second section is possibly loved by many others but I hate dark levels and this was a relief to get past it.
All in all, this was/is my least favourite chapter of Episode One. Glad I have passed it.
Playtime: 19 minutes
I’m not playing along with TREE, but that was my take on this part of Episode 1 as well. They really abused the car punting mechanic.
I did enjoy the parking garage theme, however, and it created a strong contrast with finally going topside at the end.
Lowlife starts on a sequence that increase the credibility of Alyx character. Contrary to HL2 where she was always strong, we see that she is a bit lost due to recent events. On an other hand, it’s not surprising after the train sequence.
Then we go across seedy tunnels filled with zombies, that remind me of Sandtraps. In this place also discover that Antlions have invested City 17.
In the underground parking I didn’t understand easily that it was necessary to block hole with cars. Then it is not always easy to block them, or even to find them.
This arena is very well made. It is necessary to fight while blocking holes and looking after Alyx, a real challenge.
The final battle at the elevator reminds me the end of Entanglement. But this time enemies are in shadow and difficult to aim. An intense and stressful battle, in addition I dislike survivals.
I’ll only say that it’s here you must waste your unique allowed bullet. You can’t keep it for a magnum shot in a crab…
CAUGHT MY EARS
Zombine! No, it’s not funny…
MY FRENCH LET’s PLAY
This chapter is a tale of two sections for me. I enjoyed the dilapidated parking garage and the antlion areas, but I really didn’t like the really dark areas and of course the interminable wait for the stupid elevator.
I thought the main parking area was a nifty little setpiece. Yes, it’s just pushing cars into the antlion holes but it’s a pretty hectic combination between combat and getting the task done. I really liked the 3-level layout of the area and the open space it provides.
In contrast, I thought the very dark sections that followed the antlion battle were just cheap. It’s clear the game changes its rules a bit by reducing the amount of light that bounces off the surfaces when your flashlight is on. It feels like the game is cheating to try and spook you. And the pathetic battery for the flashlight becomes painfully obvious in this chapter. Overall the entire second half of Lowlife is a frustrating undertaking because you can’t see a damn thing. I did like the Zombines though.
It adds up to probably my least favorite chapter in Episode 1.
Playtime: 33 minutes
I remember fondly of the parking ascent, but I think there’s 1 too many cranks to spin.
I died once and got Alyx killed once as well, as I’m trying to go for the last achievement in my book, that 1 free bullet.
The dark areas sure are annoying for everyone, but somehow this time with just the ggun in hand, things went rather smooth for me.
Playtime: 22 minutes
Lowlife is the “horror” chapter of Episode one. There is close to no light and a shitload of zombies. We also fight Antlions and meet the new zombie, the zombine. I personnally hate this chapter, mainly because you have to protect Alyx since she doesn’t have a flashlight. We learn about the antlion burrow’s mechanism (blocking them with cars) and eventually try to survive until that damn slow elevator gets down.
I have no challenges for this chapter
Five words or less review:
Turn on the damn lights
10 minutes 57 seconds 917 milliseconds