Prospekt begins in the Nova Prospekt prison in the Half-Life universe. Gordon Freeman is slowly being overrun by soldiers in the prison, however unknown to him his Vortigaunt allies manage to find some help from a forgotten hero.
Substantial, highly-polished and totally new addition to the Half-Life 2 universe, comparable to Half-Life 2: Episode One in length.
Developed by one person, 25 year old Richard Seabrook.
Official Valve approval for Half-Life 2 license and assets.
Standalone PC game built using the Source engine – no requirement for Half-Life 2.
Continues the story of Opposing Force, Gearbox Software’s (Borderlands) update that tells the original Half-Life 2 story from the perspective of the Marines.
Gordon Freeman is cornered and being overrun by soldiers in the Nova Prospekt prison; the player controls US Marine Adrian Shephard – the unsung hero – as he’s teleported in by Freeman’s Vortigaunt allies to help fight back.
13 new levels featuring fully-scripted puzzles and action sequences, all carefully integrated into the Half-Life 2 story.
Substantial graphical updates over the original game, including but not limited to:
- New Textures
- New Models
- Updated high resolution Combine soldier skins with improved normal mapping
- Updated high resolution textures
- Updated lighting
- Higher resolution models
- Increased cube mapping
- Over 20 new particle effects
- Modded HUD
- Modded VGUI
- New player model skin
- Return to Xen
- New voice acting
- New music
- New AI improvements, such as soldiers attempting to undo the player’s actions
This game contains STRONG language that may not be suitable for minors and younger audiences. Player discretion is advised.
Purchase Prospekt Directly from Steam
The playthrough/walkthrough below is provided by PlanetPhillip. See more of my playthroughs on this site: VP: PlanetPhillip.
WARNING: The screenshots contain spoilers.
I’ll be the first to review it, and believe me, it is going to be brutal.
I was always an anti-“paid mod’s”, I ranted and ranted and ranted when Dear Esther then Black Mesa turned from free mod’s to paid mod’s.
Stanley Parable was a different case because as a “concept mod” which saw a guy on a mod moved into a whole team on a game to really offer a whole different experience, it was cool.
Dear Esther was crap from the beginning and it turned into “art game” more beautiful but still crap, in its own way.
Black Mesa, for the moment, “deserved” its money because they rebuild everything to fit in their own vision of HL1, but still I always had problems with “we’ll never make it on sale” lies, anyways BMS is so above the average modern FPS, that I won’t continue the rant against it.
IMHO, as usual, mod’s should be considered as personal amateur projects, or a first feet of guys in the VG industry, to add on their portfolio. Some guys like Foster who built Minerva is now on VALVe, etc…
But the question of money was always a problem. IMHO : they should always be an option on “donation” but not an obligation to pay for their work. That was the case for Cry of Fear, who offered early releases and bonus weapons for those who sent money before the release, and it is that way that people should do it. It is just the best scenario.
Anyways, now comes Prospekt, that project developed by a one-man army who wanted so bad to join VALVe.
Well, there is still the question of how this guy managed to secure the rights of the Source engine (did he really pay 50k dollars to get it???!!!???) but anyways, this mod is EXACTLY everything that can be wrong if mod’s could suddenly be only in monetized versions :
In short : PROSPEKT is a big joke. 10 bucks for this?? No way.
And Richard Seabrook saying “thank you for the purchase, the money will be used for my next game”, in the credits. Well, no.
-nice fights, big fights, in large areas, corridors…
-a good work on sounds and lights. It’s like a Daft Punk or Jean-Michel Jarre show.
-cool music/OST, it goes well with the fights.
-a short but cool level on Xen under Combine control. You can see that even the ammo bend over the low gravity of the borderworld. It’s really well done!
-10 bucks for a 2 hour mod (even on the first run!), Vanilla HL2??
-Where is the story??? Besides some audio flashbacks of Shephard’s time on the HECU, and that epileptic intro?? I just wanted to die with all those green bubbles. The more is the enemy of the good, you know.
-No new weapons?? No new enemies?? What the hell?? A crowbar?? No pipe wrench? Even a knife would have pleased me… And only random Combines again and again and again…
-The difficulty of the last fight is a joke at first : I had to turn god mode ON, even after surviving countless difficulty mod’s, to win this one. Has someone even beta tested that?
After seeing a playthrough, there seems to be an easier way to do it, but it wasn’t very obvious…
My advice : Wait for the Steam sales… Buy it one dollar.. This is a joke,a scam. I
mean, this is NOT a bad mod. In fact, it’s pretty cool and a good “Opposing Force 2” fan story. But for FREE, please. for 10 bucks, it’s BAD.
Just no. Seriously, I wanted to believe in it. The “Opposing Force 2”, approved by VALVe THEMSELVES!! After the short but sweet mod Awakening (well-known everywhere), and the now dead project Opposing Force 2….
Well, it seems there is a curse to make a good follow-up to Shephard’s adventures…
EDIT : There IS a story, indeed, but, it’s just simple, nearly non-existent :
at the beginning, Shephard is freed by Vort’s from Gman stasis, they tell him that the world has changed, their races (human and Vort) are now allied against an enemy, the Combine, and now Freeman is a friend. Yes, they LITERRALLY say that.
After that, Shephard has to kill and blow some… stuff no one knows what their purpose is (a Combine spatial station), and in the end [hide] Gman comes back, he KILLS Vort’s with… psychic powers, and recaptures Shephard with a sinister grin.
And that’s it
Awakening in its 25 minute playtime did well by setting Shephard as the cause of unleashing the antlions on earth, causing trouble to the combine… Here, what did I do?
Damn it. I hope this will serve as a lesson in the future about paid mod’s.
Well, only time, and SALES, will tell… As of now, only 49% of the reviews on Steam are positive.
Well, in the end, you’ll tell me that I shouldn’t have bought it, but as usual “I WANTED TO BELIEVE”, old story for us HL fan’s.
I think I’ll again buy the next one from random guy who will do a “blue shift 2”, blablabla… Well, anyway, this one didn’t deserve our attention.
Installed: Using Steam!
Difficulty : Medium
Playtime: 2 Hour, 22 Minutes
Same old story with mods that have a lot of hype…
…no concept of how to put a decent bit of gameplay together and terrible level design.
I don’t really care that he’s charging for it but dammit I’m tired of these mods that get all the attention but are all mouth and no trousers…
The only people who could enjoy Prospekt have probably never played any other Half-Life mods.
There are a lot of problems with Prospekt, but it fundamentally comes down to one basic fact. If you’re going to charge $10 for something that I and many other mappers offer for free, you better bring your A-game. You are the one putting your product up on a pedestal and crowing, “My work is worth more than those guys!”
Prospekt fails in almost every way you could conceive, and then in ways you couldn’t. There are Ville entries that run circles around its design, of lack thereof. The amount of poor design decisions on display is staggering for any work, let alone one that’s asking $10.
I don’t know anything about this author. At the risk of sounding Breen-esque, I am fairly convinced he has never released a map, let alone a mod, in his whole Source career despite claiming to have been dealing with it since 2008. I can’t shake the feeling that this author hasn’t played any other mods either. Prospekt feels like something designed in a vacuum, sheltered from criticism and feedback, ignorant to what else is out there.
So he is, in essence, selling his first work. And he’s finding out the hard way that this was probably a bad idea. I have no doubt that if any one of Prospekt’s levels were released for free, or if the author had published a separate map altogether, we could have given him loads of feedback. I didn’t recognize any of the testers. I have a gut feeling none of them were mappers themselves. Either that or, if they were, perhaps he rejected their advice. I don’t know.
But let’s start at the beginning.
Prospekt puts you in the boots of Adrian Shephard from Opposing Force. Not that it makes a lick of difference. You never do get to do anything Freeman couldn’t in vanilla Half-Life 2. And story? What story? The intro sequence has you staring at a wall for five minutes while a garish particle effect plays and an unseen Vortigaunt lectures you about the G-Man. Interspersed throughout Prospekt’s levels, the screen will burn your eyes with a seering white flash to indicate a flashback. Another uninspired voice over from Shephard’s foul-mouthed, aggressively homophobic comrades in cringeworthy dialog that doesn’t fit the Half-Life universe at all. And yes, sometimes these continue right into combat.
The combat. Oh my gosh, the combat. Across 2 hours, 95% of it is against Combine Soldiers. One frustrating scene with infinite Antlions. One or two Zombies. Absolutely no boss monsters. Just Combine Soldiers. With buffed health and non-existent tactics that have them beeline directly at you, guns blazing, until someone dies. He even removed the Shotgunner’s skin so you can’t tell them apart from anyone else. The entire mod is a battle of attrition. The author knows this. That’s why he has these giant, inelegant health and armor dumps in between battles. But it’s not unusual to find yourself in an unwinnable battle because you used up what meager pickups were in the arena itself. In fact, I’d say most players will have to God mode the absurd final battle. And cover is a four-letter word in this mod. You never have it, and neither do the enemies because they aren’t scripted to use it, so it all comes down to doorplay. Exploiting the clunky doors, letting the Combine single file into your line of fire. And they will, because that’s how he scripted them to behave.
Because the enemies are buffed to the point that an SMG Grenade or double Shotgun won’t even make them flinch (yes, read that again to let it sink in), your only recourse in most battles is the AR2. Which, fortunately, has a much larger maximum ammo than it did before. Not that you’ll ever fill it, because ammo is scarce despite how many enemies use it against you. SMG Combine seem to do way more damage to you than vice versa.
There is no level design here. Just room-corridor-room stitched together, often copy-pasted. It’s a straightforward trek with no incentive to explore. Every now and then you come across a room that looks halfway decent. But you groan, knowing that it will inevitably turn into a battle arena the moment you press that glowing button. Halfway through the game, we have an inane platforming section involving instant-death lasers that move in various patterns. One chamber after another, the configuration changing only slightly. This is bottom-of-the-barrel design, folks.
A horrible final battle, lame puzzles, screwed up texturing, and a really sad trip to Xen. I could go on, but I won’t.
A person on Reddit asked, could you forgive Prospekt if it were free? In some cases, yes. I feel if it were released here on RTSL for free, it would probably get Play it Laters or Play it Nows simply because of its size and the current state of HL2 modding. But objectively speaking, it’s not that great. And when you have the audacity to charge $10, it actually becomes a little insulting to people like me.
Not that I feel ripped off. Not at all. I didn’t expect great things from Prospekt and I got exactly what I expected. But the comedy of errors? The hilarity of seeing just how bad it would get? In a twisted way, it was actually $10 of entertainment for me.
“The only people who could enjoy Prospekt have probably never played any other Half-Life mods.”
I think that is very true.
Has your review been deleted? I checked and I could’ve sworn it was the first thing to appear when looking through reviews.
This wouldn’t be the first time a seller has censored reviews if he has, like major/minor or Day One: Gary’s incident
Okay, nevermind. I found it under “funny”, it was just weird that it disappeared from the top of the helpful section.
oh it did? damn. I guess it moved there because a lot of people gave my review “funny”. But it’s okay.
Now he’s really banning people and bashing unfavorable reviews with his fanboys. Not an iota comparable with David Prassel though, it’s still a fairly entertaining way to ruin oneself’s career – let’s just wait for karma to roll the dice. It’s not instant, but we’ll see about that. 😀
All of this nonsense is becoming part of my growing defense of “mods should never be paid”.
Mod making in the past has been by people who enjoy making them for their own play, want to explore new skill sets and develop experiences so they can maybe enter the market with them, out of boredom or the desire to kill some time with fun tools. Mod makers in the past have had quick, easy connections with others that share those desires. And for the most part, there’ve been few incidents of spew or anger because of it.
And then we have paid mods. Which apparently bring out spite, competitive urges that are hardly creative (not the modding one-upmanship you’d find among the Villes or #x# competitions here mind you), and a fierce defensiveness and arrogance that I don’t think I’ve ever seen anywhere else.
It’s not a ‘competition’ when things are *free*. People who are of the bent that they need to prove something – their own value seen in the flashing $ signs – will jump on board for the paid-mod aspect, but by that very nature *they are not in it to have fun* while I know ‘fun’ is also had it’s not the primary concern here.
Paid mods are an awful idea. Paid mods *without any hint of quality control* like this one, even more so. It’s sad and frustrating, knowing that this guy has come out of nowhere but could have spent a lot of time on sites just like this one gathering better resources and feedback *before* going to a pay version.
Evening the playing field by requiring paid mods to have been vetted by communities and play testers – just like any other game you pay for – would be one step, but… in my opinion *removing* the aspect of payment entirely would be best. Want to make a workshop map? Go for it. Want to create an all new game and use new resources, that’s a paid game. But it’d better work, be tested fully, and be up to standard with other games, and not easily be confused with anything that a single-user created map on a workshop in gmod might produce. Which is in a nutshell, what this mod seems to be.
nice to see that I’m not the only one who rates the mod in a really brutal way xD
I’m the top reviewer on steam btw. I guess you can see that I was very emotional while writing the review, because there were things in the mod which really pissed me off.
If I didn’t win it in Phillip’s giveaway, I would refund it immediately.
Last month, when Prospekt was announced to be a paid-mod, Gunship MKII and Rich had some minor frictions in the Community Hub. Not on either side though, since I’ve always had the stereotype that good creations were born out of actions rather than words, I had a LOT of suspicion towards Prospekt – not how much it is going to charge you, but how Prospekt was marketed and advertised.
One man army. Valve approved. Some fancy particles and Adrian Shephard. Except from “Developed by one person, 25 year old Richard Seabrook”, these altogther just doesn’t stand up against the screenshots. But let’s just say one should not make judgements from the surface, if there’s something Adam Foster or something vertical to be expected, it’s not going to be affected by hype anyway.
Optimism did not last long, and you’ve already known what Prospekt turned out to be – we have a good textbook example of “How to make your levels boring”: you can’t even name one thing that’s so hilarious to give you a motivation for a “So I Played A MOD Called Prospekt…” video. As for most of you, reading through the negative reviews through Steam was fairly enough so I’m not going to say any more of that.
What grinds my gear is the way some fans defend for it.
“It’s a one man’s work; what do you expect more? It’s great.” or “You downvoters never actually played HL, ‘cuz they are the same” just made me wonder what had possibly gone wrong. On a glimpse these are just simple ignorance – not everyone played something like Transmission or Minerva; but on second thought, something really thrilled through my spines.
It’s the gaming community at its worst.
While Sony’s propaganda told us “It was never a better time to be a gamer”, the 7th and 8th generation of video games are not so prosperous. It’s a fact that games are not as fun as they were before. And it shocks me when I found some games with generally unfavorable criticism in the past actually recovered from that fiasco and received much better reception nowadays: namely, NFS Undercover. What further surprises me is that: I myself have to agree such turnaround, since it IS not that bad a game while replayed.
The truth is so explicit. Clearly the majority of players did not enjoy recent titles from the series. And when people get frustrated by something eagered but not possibly obtainable, they tend to playback some heavily SweetFX’d memories and submit to a more reachable goal.
That is the very case with defenders of Prospekt. Let’s assume all positive reviews are made with no affiliation (or most of them. At least I can’t say Rich has affiliation with Chinese players who made positive reviews), then things began to make sense. Like some people already pointed out, “you won’t enjoy this game unless you haven’t played some good mods, or you’re dying for some Half-Life content” – apart from ignorance, what’s being left out is the lowering of bars.
And to some extent, unconditional worship, maybe.
If you still remember Interplay, their slogan “By players, for players” would be very sarcastic for what we’re running into today. Since when does gaming become more star-oriented than gameplay-oriented? Lots of gamers tend to follow the names and stories of producers blindly, ignoring deficiencies of the products themselves, defending against any undesirable speeches, and tell you that “I don’t care, he’s one man army, this is good for me”. By pre-purchasing products that aren’t necessarily critical (most publishers would sold limited DLCs later anyway), crowd-funding some obvious hype, and tolerating producers from making flawed products again and again and again, it is OURSELVES (not everyone actually) that are in fact the beginning of everything.
Prospekt may or may not teach us a valuable lesson. I actually hope Rich can make something that really adds up to the price tag someday. But not now.
Sadly it does not look very promising from most of the screenshots and playtroughs/reviews I seen.
It looks bland, repetitive and lacking in most areas.
Lighting was done decent in some places though, but otherwise it just seemed like a mess and would be far better suited as a free mod.
There are better mods out there that are free and longer in gameplay (Obviously research and development and Minerva and other smaller mods)
Even if this went on sale I don’t really think it would be worth it.
Let me insert my 50 cent into the discussion. The mod is slightly boring I think. The design like “run-go up in an elevator-fight-go down in the same elevator-fight again-run again” is tedious. Many of the chambers are empty, long corridors are endless. And when you finally meet the enemies, they seem to be immortal. Their skins are too dark so I permanently used my flashlight to recognize them in the darkness. The final battle is something out of any criticism. After of 10 minutes of fighting I had to use God+noclip to flight over the arena and swith on this f*** buttons, misunderstanding what should I do. If this mod were free I would give it “May be”, but now there are a lot of mods here on PP which are much more better than it. So don’t waste your time and money.
All of these comments, from people I know are modders and mappers, and at the very least *mod players*, only serve to cement my ‘told you so’ sigh and eyerolls anywhere else on line. It’s frustrating to see that “one man army” and a group of playtesters that have zero presence in the modding community here (which, as far as I can tell IS the modding community, given that it’s specific to this game and all) gets any sort of approval.
I’m not going to pay for a mod that amounts to a ‘maybe’ or at best a ‘play it later’ from our experienced modders and players. I dearly hope that the rousing negative replies on the game’s discussion hub teach anyone else that’s working on ‘making money from their modding’ either does it RIGHT (as in: doesn’t try to do it alone, in a vacuum; and has a product that they themselves would actually pay for), or stops to think “can I release this for free, since I did it in my spare time, am not a professional, and have no business bilking players out of their money?”
Considering this (at the time of writing) was released yesterday I have noticed that positive reviews are generally quite short, but the negative ones are mostly LOOOOONG! That’s a lot of people paying good money only to be disappointed (a bit like Windows Vista, Windows 8 (8.1)).
Rather than go into a lengthy diatribe of why I’m not going to play this mod, I’ll bet if this had been free it would have got far more positive reviews, a lot of what I have so far read is that people feel they have wasted their money.
I paid 10 bucks for Goat Simulator, and later got the dlcs so basically I’ve got a 16-18$ game. I’ve put in SO many hours and enjoyed the crap out of it, it’s got immeasurable replay value for people like me (who enjoy fart jokes and ragdoll physics, but also the in-jokes of the mmo version and all the not so gentle jabs at the game industry overall), AND it has Steam achievements, AND a workshop AND is available on consoles as well as pc.
For ten bucks and change.
For ten bucks, I expect any paid game to be a full game. I mean, flip side I paid a total of 100$ or so for two copies of Portal 1, first on its own and then in the Orange Box – and I’d pay that much again if I had to rebuy it. I can speed-run through Portal 1 in less than 40 minutes, if I really try. But there’s story, unique game play, a full-length soundtrack and all the other perks that a paid game gets. The length of a game for 10 bucks can be a few hours, but I expect replay value and *something* to come away from it the same as if I’d blown that 10 on a movie. For 2 hours of a movie at ten bucks I expect to come away talking about it with friends, not disappointed in its lack of anything special.
As I see its “one of those” (thankfully rare) over the top final battle crescendo type mods, my review would be merciless and hammer it whether it was $ 10- or free. You couldn’t pay me to play a mod where I even considered using god mode. People like that deserve to lose and I hope this guy does.
Let me explain the final battle to you.
So, you’re in a Combine reactor room, like the big central shaft in Episode One. There are terminals on the north/west/east/south corners of the room. They are connected by narrow walkways with no railings. It is a death drop the entire way around. There is also no cover whatsoever.
Your objective, which is never outright explained, is to press the buttons on each of the four terminals. This causes the reactor to overload after some amount of time passes.
Unfortunately, whenever you press a button, you trigger a group of AR2-toting Combine to appear. They will run up and try to press the button themselves. If they do, you have to wait for an elaborate sequence to play out before you can press the button again.
You MUST keep all four buttons pressed or else this will go on forever. The Combine are infinite. And, like all the other Combine, have buffed HP.
I haven’t talked about items in this battle. There are no ammo crates. The only health comes from the heathkits positioned near the terminals. There are only eight of them.
As the reactor overloads, the screen will constantly flash white. The bloom will burn your eyes. A flash even more annoying than those Combine Scanners that take your picture. In a room which, need I remind you, has death drops on all sides. And no cover. And Combine firing at you relentlessly. And practically no health.
Oh, and the screen is shaking. Relentlessly. In fact, even if you survive long enough to trigger a meltdown, the Combine will continue to shoot at you while the place crumbles. All the way up until the ending decides to trigger.
This sounds like an awful battle, doesn’t it? Believe it or not, the author had the audacity to make this a selling point. “New AI improvements, such as soldiers attempting to undo the player’s actions.”
Give me a break.
I said 1-2 weeks before release on the steam discussion boards, a hype mod because “Adrian Shepard” is back. And I knew lot of people like me would definitely complain on release day so i waited and got myself pizza and popcorn.
A Bland Paid Mod that will inspire other modders to seal their work behind paywalls and showcase their “skill” after you throw few euros/dollars in their piggy bank. So their next game will be “””BETTER”””.
Also shoutout to RedEye, I’ve never seen such a blatant guy defending paid mods starting with black mesa calling opposite comments or opinions as “crybaby”,”cheap”, and get this unintelligible rant (http://steamcommunity.com/app/399120/discussions/0/412446890547466757/)
Prosecutor Lurker is my username.
This developer made 75530 euros judging from steamdb.info. (https://steamdb.info/app/399120/graphs/)
Maybe I should be looking at players than owners because that number is very gigantic, which leads to 7770 euros.
Again, he is still profiting.
Even with refunding because honestly the game is under 2 hours if you just play it on easy and watch other playthroughs, he still will keep 70%.
That’s enough proof that in few months when we see another paid mod, he will also just invest 25k in the license fee and still make tons of profit.
Also for those who need advice on how to play this paid mod.
Bind mouse3 “npc_create npc_antlionguard”. Enjoy Pacifist Run =D
P.S: Apologies to phillp for bringing this taboo theme, but I’m very happy I saved myself 10 euros by just getting the “free” way for this paid mod.
Change of mind.
This, is, it.
Rich is far more shamelss and arrogant than I thought:
Wow such complicated. And it was hilarious when he referred to The Stanley Parable as “games where you basically just walk around listen to voice over and the game is finished”.
okay. I felt bad when writing a brutal review for this mod, because the creator apparently working a long time and really hard on it, but after reading that I dont give a shit anymore.
Especially considering that Stanley Parable has a lot of crazy things going on behind the scenes to make its levels work. I don’t think I’ve ever played a Source game that made me go “Wait, how’d they do that?” so many times.
Also, Stanley implemented its dialog in the correct way. Not using ambient_generics on timers. That’s why in Phillip’s playthrough, the Vortigaunt in the intro keeps talking when you hit pause and then there’s that long pause where no one talks. It’s also why all the dlalog has very long pauses between lines and why the subtitles don’t consistently work. If this is how you want to do it, then you need to do what Black Mesa did and add a “Don’t pause sound” flag to the ambient_generics.
this might not be the right place for this, but if ambient generics are not what you use for voice, then what do you do? Because I might want to do something with voice for LiberationVille, BUT no real dialouges or something, just a single message from a radio or something like that. The only problem with ambient_generic is that it doesn’t pause when you pause the game?
Ideally, you make a scene in Faceposer that is nothing but dialog. It allows you to fine tune the timing of things and it stops playing when the game is paused. For the sake of a Ville, this isn’t something you have to do. It’s just a layer of polish I’d expect in a paid mod. Especially one that makes its story a bullet point in its feature list.
Amazing, isn’t it? There’s not one talking NPC in all of Prospekt.
I kinda hope this is the beginning of new “semi-oficial” content in HL2 franchise… You know would be quite cool if we have some fresh developers doing high quality stuff.
And who knows probably some 3rd party take the forever paralyzed HL3 development, and finally ralease it.
Unfortunately it’s not, Prospekt is not official in any way, and it’s total fail and cash grab.
The best thing Valve could do is creating Steam Workshop for HL games, but they are too lazy to do that, why bother when Dota gives the money (money, money, money).
Imagine Steam workshop with possibility of donating mod creators. Not fixed prizes like they did with Bethesda, but just donations.
Sometimes I wonder if Gabe has so many things to do, or he just doesn’t care about anything besides Dota2 (and CSGO).
The fact that this mod is on the Steam Workshop just proves that Valve doesn’t care at all when it comes to what’s paid and what’s not. Just like Steam Greenlight. I remember when the landfill of bad games was XBLA. Now it’s Greenlight. I may give it a try, but I’m currently disappointed with Valve.
The irony is it could have been an OK free mod, but in reality it’s the worst paid mod I’ve ever come across.
I haven’t played this, so, I can’t offer any additional criticism. However, I just got around to playing MINERVA the other day (I’m a touch late to the party!), and the contrast that I can see based on the reviews of Prospekt is pretty disgusting. I don’t think I even need to go into how absurd it is that a product like this costs ten dollars, while other one-man/woman mods like MINERVA and G-String (flawed, but absolutely enormous) are totally free.
I don’t have a philosophical objection to paying for great mods, but I would expect to get value for my money. I really only bought Black Mesa because I hoped (and still hope) there will be a lot of custom maps created by modders. After reading the reviews of Prospekt on Steam it looks like the price point is too high.
Last weekend my Grandson told me he bought Prospekt from Steam, he wanted me to play it, and I did! I felt sorry for him and gave him his $10.00 bucks to cover the cost of his mistake.
I really wanted to like this mod and write a piece here saying how I couldn’t believe the negative criticism. Like some others I had no problem with paying for it. I figure that I’ve had so many hours of free fun playing the HL mods and maps that a few dollars here or there for the odd one is not something to complain about.
It all began quite well despite an over-long start sequence and, for the first hour or so, I really couldn’t see what all the outcry was about. However I was becoming increasingly frustrated with the high contrast, flashback sequences which just simply got in the way and in no part added to the gameplay. These continued throughout and had me shouting at the screen by the end.
Once into Nova Prospect I found the gameplay just too tedious for words, and, while I like battling hoards of Combine normally, this just seemed to be the same thing over and over again. The endless corridors of doom with various laser traps were mind numbing to say the least and the part where you lose all your weapons only to get them back again almost immediately was pointless. The Zen sequence could have been so much better. There was a bit of a fun battle initially but once that was over the jumping down from static island to static island to get back to the teleporter required no skill or imagination whatsoever, just a complete waste of time.
I would say that generally I am pretty easy to please when it comes to mods. As long as there is a modicum of excitement and variety of play I’m sold. Not being a modder myself I am not too picky about the finer points of construction, I just want to have a fun time out there. Sadly this mod started ok and just went downhill for me. While, as previously mentioned, I am not begrudging the author his hard earned cash, I think he would have been better off releasing it as a free mod, getting the feedback and maybe turning out a much, much better version down the road which would be worth the asking price.
Considering that the author claims he has been making maps for Source since 2008, the lack of any kind of public release until now looms large. He’s getting an earful now, but it sure feels like this mod was developed in a vacuum. But, you know, so you have a bad release. Other devs have been in this position before and sometimes what you do to try and make it right says a lot. Unfortunately, this author’s lack of response leaves a lot to be desired.
We all did.
A point brought up by many, but the main issue I see here is that the author did not beat the free “competition”. Although I have my own objections to selling or relying on non-essentials for a stable income, if you are to do it, you must do it better than the many creations available for free. At the end day of course, it is up to the consumer to determine if something is worth their money and as much as I despise capitalism, the majority of consumers often reap what they sow.
That said, those not satisfied with the game should be able to get a refund, provided the game is then removed from their game library permanently. It is true that some may use the feature of refunds in attempt to get something for free, but it would be far easier to seek illegitimate ways of obtaining the product than going to the trouble of purchasing and requesting a refund.
Overall, the author of this mod (or game if that’s your view) may actually lose more by releasing it for sale than for free. A potential employer is not likely going to be swayed by the “46%” positive rating currently on the Steam store. Had the developer released it for free, he would have likely had much more lenient reviews due to the fact he did not demand hard-earned money in exchange for access to his product.
I paid for a Half Life 2 Mod once. It was called Portal and it was awesome. It came in an orange box and well worth the $4 per game I paid for it. (or $5 per game if you consider TF2 later went free to play)
So would I consider Prospekt to be worth twice as much to me as Portal?
Or is it even half as good as Opposing Force it think I paid $20 for 15 years ago?
From what I have seen and heard, it has a lot of design choices I forgive free mods having. Like being stupidly hard or repetitious combat or lack of logical puzzles.
But would never accept those in a retail release.
Ha, that’s an interesting thing you brought on the table. I’m kind of the same here.
For example, besides Stanley Parable and Black Mesa, I bought the OST of Underhell chapter 1. Because that was the only way at this time I could give something to the author of this fantastic piece of work. Honestly, this is always the way I’ve seen it, donation… “ask… and you shall receive”…
I’ve also considered donations for Cry of Fear but instead I chose to do the french translation.
Yes, sometimes, like you, I’ve no problem to give money to some of the best products the modding world provide us, because I’ve played so many, I feel a little “obliged” sometimes to award the community of their efforts.
But, really, not to a mediocre product which obliges me to pay for it… This is a severe bias to my personal ethics.
Hey Phillip, are we gonna able to review Prospekt here in RTSL?? Or not, I mean I’d like to give a proper recommendation as any other mod.
No. It’s not a mod, it’s a game. As much as we might think of it as a mod, it’s not. It’s a paid game that is inferior to many mods, but still a game.
So, we’re not gonna able to write any recomm. here in the site?
You can write a review but not add a recommendation image, the same as the other games listed on the site. You can’t add a recommendation for Half-Life, so why for this?
LINUX: This is selled as a standalone game, but its possible to convert it to a mod.
You have to copy the prospekt folder inside the games folder to the sourcemods folder.
Then lowercase all the files
now copy the bin files from the Source SDK Base 2013 bin folder to the bin folder of the mod
after that you have to edit the gameinfo.txt edit the id to SDK 2013 and change some pathes…
If someone want i can post a valid gameinfo.txt….
Here I leave my review as originally posted on the Steam Prospekt’s website”
Well overall this game is a Play It Now, and I’m talking about the rating options available in the RTSL website (former PlanetPhillip). The whole game indeed looks and feels professional and the textures and all of that tech stuff feels realistic into that strong CMB architecture and environment.
My favorite part was the Xen one, there it just felt great to visit that scenario again which HL2 just forget and buried.
Now about the shortcomings I can say, the combat is just OK but feels quite predictable, and terrible hectic and annoying at the final core part. I really missed some Gunship or a Helicopter to fight against, and well, at least we battle some hunters like in the middle of the game.
Also the voice we hear a lot about Shepard’s memories feels sometimes absurd as it didn’t reveal almost nothing relevant about the gameplay or the in-game story plot, it was kind of annoying too and I only can think that the purpose of it was to engage the gamers and ask for a sequel of the story, which I have my doubts and personally I wouldn’t like to play nor even purchase the sequel -If sometime comes out-, after I played this one.
In conclusion I can say my overall feeling is just OK, but I really feel this product would have been better launched as a free mod instead of a retail game on its own. I’d say the balance between price and enjoyment, nevertheless is quite subjective, in my opinion that balance is not right at all, I mean here we have a very expensive product and really a very random modification for HL2. So it’s not very worthy to purchase or spend some money on this one…. You know BM really worth’s what you play for it but this one not at all. And even the fantastic and very immersive Cry of Fear would be worthy to pay for it but even that great master piece is absolutely free.
Also I have this very annoying “A.I. Disable” bug that made me began some chapters from scratch more than once!!!! And as far as I know the developer couldn’t fix it properly yet. So be warned about that.
So finally I can say, being an experienced mod gamer -I’ve played more than 200 mods in my personal record and review more than 150- This could have been better released as a free mod rather than have to spend some money on it. So my advice to his developer is just to learn from this experience and if he wants to launch some more products please do it in the big HL2 modding community, you could definitely would learn a lot from it and even be a better designer.