for Half-Life 2: Episode Two

7th March 2015

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

In December 2009 I ran a mapping competition and this mod contains all the entries. They are packaged as a mod to make it easy to play.

The maps can be played in any order from the New Game menu and are listed in alphabetically.

To see who won and who got honourable mentions please read on.

Thank you

Firstly, allow me to thank all the mappers who entered and also apologize for the delay in posting the results. I am encouraged enough by the response to commit to another mapping competition in the Spring.

The Judging

I was the sole judge for this competition. All prizes are paid via Steam (as a gift game) or PayPal, and the winner receives $70. In the competition notes I stated there would be two honourable mentions and one random winner. I have decided to change that to four honourable mentions and no random winner. Partly because there were less entries than I expected and partly because there were some great entries. The Honourable mentions win $10.

Perhaps you should jump to the download section and play the maps BEFORE you read my thoughts on each one?

The Winner

Congratulations goes to SLi-WooDy AKA Phil for his entry EP2-X13. I chose this as the winner, and I must say I was torn between a few, because it not only looked beautiful but was detailed and fun to play. The area is quite small and the winding path always had you wondering what was around the next corner. The addition of battery collecting and a variety of enemies was also appreciated.

The Honourable Mentions

With no disrespect to the other entries, choosing the winner was hard but choosing the Honourable Mentions was a lot easier. The list is in alphabetical order.

Firstly, Ballistic by sndexter6 for providing some excellent sniper situations that required thought and planning. What it lacked in details and realism it made up for in gameplay. The position of the three snipers made it hard to just run and hope. If the setting had been a little more detailed and coherent it would have probably won.

Secondly, DW44 by Ross Walker AKA Sirocco was stunning in its concept and will amaze you when you play it. That is if your machine can handle it. This is one of the reasons it didn’t win – my pc just couldn’t handle it and it was quite stuttery. It continues from where Drowned World finished, which was a nice touch. In addition it never really took the sniper concept seriously and their addition almost seemed like an afterthought.

Thirdly, NovaSniping by Samuli Jääskeläinen AKA Hemuuuli/Sj. This is a cool map that really requires you to think and plan. I misunderstood the use of the Combine soldier at the beginning but once I did things were a little easier. I want to stress a little easier because I found this a really hard map to play. It did what I like maps to do and that’s challenge me tactical.

Fourthly and lastly for the HMs is Super Awesome Sniper Arena by Joe Albericci AKA ThePengu. This is an arena map and I have to admit that when I started the competition I didn’t even consider entries like this. It is very clever but not being a lover of these types of maps I struggled to play it. Think of The Cube on steroids and you get an idea of what you face. It’s very clever but just not my cup of tea and coincidently really hard too.

Please Contact Me

Will the winner and HMs please contact me with their PayPal details or their Steam account name, along with the $10 game they want. Thank you.

The Others

That leaves us 2 entries.

The City by Sparky575 was just too plain and easy compared to the rest. However, I thank the author for entering and hope he enters the next competition.

Tunnel by James Jerram AKA GIJames was very interesting but too repetitive for me. It features a moving sniper, that is actually an automated firing mechanism, and a long fall down if you fall off the edge. Overall it was fun but not inventive enough.

Readers’ Choice

Don’t agree with me? Well, here’s your chance to vote for the winner.

Basic Details

  • Title: Sniperville
  • File Name: hl2-ep2-sp-sniperville.7z
  • Size : 64.45MB
  • Date Released: 17 January 2010
  • Authors: sndexter6, Sparky575, Ross Walker AKA Sirocco, SLi-WooDy AKA Phil, Samuli Jääskeläinen AKA Hemuuuli/Sj, Joe Albericci AKA ThePengu and James Jerram AKA GIJames

Download Options

Download to your HDD [69.5MB]

Installation Instructions

  • Copy the Sniperville folder into your SourceMods folder.
  • Restart or start Steam.
  • Sniperville should now be listed in your Library tab.

Please see the Technical Help section if you need help.


The playthrough below is provided by Custom Gamer as part of The Ville Retrospective event. See more of his playthroughs on this site: VP: Custom Gamer


Click on the thumbnails below to open a 800 pixel wide image.
WARNING: The screenshots may contain spoilers.

Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3
Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3
Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3
Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3
Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3
Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3
Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3
Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3
Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3
Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3
Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3
Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3 Single Player First Person Shooter Maps and Mods for Half-Life 1, 2 and Episodes 1, 2 and 3
Reader Recommendations
Avoid It!
Think Twice
Play It Later
Play It Now!

27 recommendations, average score: 4.41 (out of 5), standard deviation: 0.46 (what's that?)
Total Downloads
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Meta Review Data
Statistics based on 6 comment(s) with meta review data.

Using Gauge: Users
Manually: 6 Users

Time Taken:
Average: 1 Hours, 57 Mins
Shortest: 1 Hours, 20 Mins by MisterAddy
Longest: 3 Hours by Hec
Total Time Played: 11 Hours, 40 Mins
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  1. Phillip says Play It!

    Well, what can I say that I haven’t already said in the main post? Not much except that it was fun to play them and I hope you enjoy them as much as I did.

    I am very interested to see the voting and for the next comp I will probably have a prize for the readers” winner too.

    In case you missed it in the main post will the winner and HMs please contact me with their PayPal details or the $10 game they want bought via Steam – Don’t forget your Steam account name too.

    Thanks again to all the entrants and happy sniper killing!

  2. Play It Later

    Some of the sniper situations revolve specifically around the snipers, some just kinda toss them in as an afterthought, but some really use them well without feeling like the entire level revolves around them.

    I’m not sure how I’m going to choose between Ep2-X13 or NovaSniping. Both of those are my top picks, but for entirely different reasons.

    I’m probably going to end up giving my vote to NovaSniping. Any mapper that already takes into account multiple differetn gameplay styles has my vote. As he states, it’s possible to both kill all 3 snipers or not kill all 3 snipers while still beating the level, and he does it using unique gameplay that I just haven’t seen done before. The only problem is that it is relatively short and has no real “goal” you just go from the beginning and get to the end.

    Ep2-X13 is possibly the only map in the group that uses the snipers well, but feels like they aren’t the only reason the map exists. The use of batteries and fighting some enemies OTHER than just combine helped reinforce this.

    DW44 also managed to keep the entire level from being JUST about snipers, but this one did feel a bit more of an afterthought. The first section was actually quite well thought out, but after the first sniper things got rough.
    At this point, rather than being in a tucked away hole, the snipers were actually standing right out in the open, so there really wasn’t any way to deal with them except by rocket launcher, however it also seemed like every single combine in that area knew my exact location and was shooting at me from across the entire map. That gets annoying.
    Since there was a rocket cache, I ended up using it for everything in that section, not because it was the most powerful weapon and no limit on ammo, but because the only way I could be certain I got a kill was seeing a corpse get hurled through the air. That was how far away completely normal combine were shooting at me from. Heck, the snipers were actually LESS accurate than the other combine.

    Ballistic was great, but in some ways felt a lot like an american gladiators level. That’s both good and bad, as it made the challenge fun, but also felt a bit contrived and killed a lot of the realistic mood of the map.

    Tunnel was fun, but Phillip was right, the setup was far too simple.

    City was probably the weakest map of the bunch. Rather than following any “path” you just kinda wandered through an area. Once I killed the first sniper, the location of the next two really did feel like the author just kinda tossed them in there and submitted the map. After I killed the last two, I had no clue where I was supposed to go from there. The game didn’t end, but I also couldn’t find even the slightest hint of a path opening up for me to leave to.

    Super Awesome Sniper Arena was one of these levels that I absolutely hated, but could tell was well done. I hate situations where I have to survive a specific amount of time. but from what I could see the level was actually well balanced for challenge while still being beatable. I never actually bothered to attempt it myself though.

    All in all, while you will certainly not like every map, everyone should be able to find at least one fun map that they can enjoy.

  3. SLi-WooDy

    Just a quick thx to Planetphillip for holding this competition, and for taking the time to play all the maps, and making it a mod.
    Well done to everyone that entered, I enjoyed playing them all.
    Looking forward to the next one.


  4. Hemuuuli

    I have played all the maps and think this competition was a success. The variety of diffrent use of snipers and styles. I hope you all find my entry interesting at least.

    It is really hard to pick my fav map. I’ll try to write some constructive feedback for every map when I get time. I simply reply them fot this post.

    I am looking foward for seeing more competitions. If you want more entries advertise the competition more on diffrent forums but seven is pretty damn much. Even interlopers design contests don’t always get this many entries and they don’t even require playable map.

    1. Hemuuuli

      First review: Tunnel by James Jerram AKA GIJames

      I have very contradictory feelings for this map. I love the simple style, music and overall athmosphere. I have always loved games like Ico where everything is minimalistic. I think that creator should have used even less diffrent elements in this map to make it more powerfull. The starting and ending were very lacking. A fade in and out in the color of fog would have worked perfectly. The scanners were also too much and you really don’t need the ggun or suit (just make sniper instakill).

      Just an athmospheric corridor, you and a lone sniper and I would have loved the map. Now it is too complicate to be simple – if you get this. I am art student so I “overthink” designs sometimes. Did you really even think minimalistic design or is this just poor mapping. 😀

      7/10 – Let the map suck you in and enjoy this unique experince.

      1. I dissagree. The scanners had a beautiful dynamic of playing both a detrimental and supplementary role. They could be broken for suit power, and also used as a distraction for the sniper to shoot at instead of you, but if you weren’t careful they could blind you. Without them being there, I think Tunnel would have actually been TOO simple.

      2. Did you really even think minimalistic design or is this just poor mapping.

        I never considered this poor mapping, just questionable choices. The level never made sense to me and that always sticks in my mind.

      3. Just to clarify, not to make excuses:

        Hemuuuli: “Did you really even think minimalistic design or is this just poor mapping.”

        I am relatively new to mapping (this is my first released map), so I decided to keep the level as simple as possible both because when I played through an early build I liked the minimalistic feel to it, and because if I added too much detail without knowing enough about mapping I probably would have made it worse.

        Also, Grey Acumen is correct about the purpose of the scanners.

      4. Hemuuuli

        6th review: EP2-X13 by SLi-WooDy AKA Phil

        The usage of light was really good in this map. Very good exaple of interesting but still realistic lightning. Outside and sewer looked great too. Interiors looked rushed and I didn’t like them. They looked like box rooms with bunch or random props throwed in (still looking a lot better than most of the entries).

        The pacing was Valveish with usuage of variety of enemies and little simple battery puzzle (why people can’t imagine any new puzzles, it isn’t so hard and I accually facepalmed when there was a in-game text telling me what to do too). Difficulty was good and there wasn’t any big proplems in enity work either – except I didn’t kill the last sniper, a random combine threw a granade and killed it. o.O

        About snipers. You just killed them with nades and that was it. Map looked pretty, pacing was there, sounds, basic level design, a little puzzle etc. BUT it lacks one pretty important thing for me personally. It didn’t bring anything new. It was just a rerun of already seen combat/puzzles. Next time I’d like to see something new. I was dissapointed because map looked like it had a lot potential but there wasn’t anything deeper.

        8/10 “Nothing new but very good gameplay and visuals.”

        General ps. One more battery/plug-in/see saw puzzle and you drive me MAD!

    2. Hemuuuli

      Second review: DW44 by Ross Walker AKA Sirocco

      Very confusing map. First sniper was really hard to kill. You got only one granade so I was forced to quickload couple of times when I didnät hit. Then I got frustated and just rushed through the electric water next to the sniper and just gently dropped that nade next to combine to blow that one annoying bastard up!

      I liked the simple challenge what first sniper gave me but the area following up was simply stupid and felt really unfinished. There was enemies more than I was able to count, if you fell down there was NO way up back and I didn’t have enought ammo to kill everything (I managed to kill the strider on hard ^^). PLUS you was able to see the snipers but only kill them with explosives. :S And was there somewehe end?

      5/10 “Map feels like unfinished but has it potential”

      1. I killed the first sniper by taking the vending machine right next to the entry with my gravity gun, holding it before me and jumped through the water against the sniper 😀

        1. oh, and there was a way out, a ladder in the left edge of it

    3. Hemuuuli

      Third review: Ballistic by sndexter6

      This map was a lot like Leon’s mods Coastline to athmosphere and Stider mountain. Level design, lights, enemy placement etc. seemed a bit random without any other purpose than gameplay. The pacing in the map was a lot better than in Leon’s so it was more enjoyable experience.

      Still there was too many enemies and battles with combines felt disconnected from sniper because sniper couldn’t shoot there too often. That manhack mayhem was fun and challensing and usage of music in the end to make it feel like “finale” was things I liked but this map was too generic. It didn’t really give anything new to sniping or gave satisfaction in terms of level and visual or design .

      6/10 “Generic sniper map without bigger flaws or highlights.”

    4. Hemuuuli

      4th “review”: The City by Sparky575

      Err… at least mapper made a map within the deadline.
      I really can’t think of enything else positive. Sorry.
      Gather some more experience / or time for your next contest. Every on of us are beginner once but not every on of us release “noob” builds.

      1/10 “Need to say more?”

      5th review: Super Awesome Sniper Arena by Joe Albericci AKA ThePengu

      Man! This map was HARD! I managed to beat it on easy. It also lagged like hell and there was some weird background noice. I noclipped thru the map and found out that health power-ups were spawned inside each other. I don’t know if the map is easier with those in it but difficulty was way too up in this. Map would have needed more playtesting in difficulty and enity work.

      I really liked the visuals of this map. I have always had a special place in my heart for Tron/Rez/Cosmic Smash etc. grapihcs style. The action music and announcer were amazing 😉 too. The “boss battle” phase and ending were fun too. Shame that the map was too hard and I am sure that most of the player won’t make that far.

      7/10 “Fun areana map with brutal difficulty.”

      1. Joe

        It is a challenge, admittedly. Knowing the crates is a big help unfortunately I didn’t have time to add a mini tutorial. The crates are the winch-point. You use them well you can do it. If not. you get riddled with sniper bullets.
        The lag is caused by a parent physbox error. It is also in Tunnel. I couldn’t find a way of getting the crate to work and lose the error. Its just a matter of CPU as far as I know.
        Health crates spawned inside each-other? hmmm. Couldn’t have done a lot about this. First of all, more than one shouldn’t have spawned in the first place. I can only hope its an isolated incident.(and yes health power-ups give you max heath when destroyed. if you managed to do it without those I’m flabbergasted)
        Glad the music is liked. I grabbed an old track I made a while ago re-tweaked it and put some announcements over it.

        Yes it is hard. But hey, you are rewarded for perseverance.
        Thanks for everyone who played. It was fun making. Its not everyone’s cup of tea I know. I hope a minority enjoyed it. Could have used some heads up on Phills preference though
        I look forward to future competitions.

  5. Play It Now!

    Some of these maps weren’t my style, but others were right up my alley.

    A note to all mappers out there – some players like to play on HARD mode first. That said, in many cases in these maps, I started with one SMG clip and two or three Combine to kill in the first encounter. I will ALWAYS run out of ammo in these cases because on hard mode, the Combine take more hits than normal. Please at least give me one more clip of SMG ammo in the beginning to supplement to battle. 🙂

    The most beautiful map out there was “EP2-X13”, but my personal favorite of the bunch was the far-fetched, hyper-trippy “Sniper Arena”. The other maps seemed decent but were repetitive to each other, or didn’t have a clear goal. In “City”, I killed the snipers and Combine with ease and was left wondering, “What next?” with no answer.

    Overall, an excellent collection of maps from the community. There’s something in here for everyone.

  6. Play It Now!

    My thanks to Phillip for doing this, brilliant idea, and my especial thanks to the map makers for the privilege of playing the maps experiencing your creative imaginations.

    By an HL2 SP FPS Combat hardened warrior. Crunching Combine is my pleasure.
    So and in order:

    DW44: Woo Hoo! (oops, sorry). Very well done indeed Sirocco. Very well mapped and thought out with surprises on first play. Very nice visually – when I got the chance to have a look see – enemies are rife but well placed and combat nicely paced. Great mix of hard combat requiring thought, cunning and tactics but we are adequately supplied with ordnance to get it done. I only just got through on hard skill. The most satisfying map for me. A great start to your next episode? Please?

    Ballistic: This was a close run thing with DW44, very. Cunningly mapped and plotted. Combat engagements are well thought out and very hard but winnable. Again thought and some tactics required but not as hard as DW44 so very very slightly less satisfying. Nice one sndexter6.

    EP2_X13: A very well planned and executed map which I thoroughly enjoyed. Cover from the Snipers was well placed – might have liked a bit more for the 3rd one!. The battery was a good idea to bring in to make the map a little different. Nice combat game play and nicely paced.
    The only negatives for me are that I would have liked this more had the light been a touch brighter to take fuller of advantage of EP2 and more Combine troops to slaughter (or be slaughtered by!).
    Thanks sli-woody.

    Those are my top 3 and I’ll be playing them again – great. Very many thanks indeed.

    NovaSniping: The best of the rest but no combat which is a bit unfortunate for this game player! However, quite clever in it’s way. Very sly duct work. Beat it but would not want to play again as there is not a lot to do really. Nice try in the time though.

    Sniperville_entry (City): Given only a week to knock this together it would be harsh to criticise so I will not. A tiny wee bit of combat. The first Sniper was awake but easy to take out. The other 2 must have been asleep or thought I’m too nice a chap or something. I suspect that the author has more and better than this for sure.

    Tunnel: A gauntlet map and no combat at all. The path to follow is obvious and without choice. Nothing to attact the eye visually. The player need do absolutely nothing clever except to run from cover to cover.
    When I finished, I had no feeling of achievement.
    This one is not for me.

    Not placed because it is just not possible for me to place it
    Sniperarena: Marvellous concept, you have a vaulting imagination for sure.
    I just cannot place this map. It’s like being asked to pick your best teams from 7. Six are playing cricket but one is playing a darned good game of football.
    Incomparable but very cleverly done, Joe.

  7. Play It Now!

    At this moment, I’d just like to say Thank You to Phillip for running the competition and well done to everyone who entered.
    Personal commitments made it impossible for me to spend enough time to properly optimise dw44 which does make it play slowly on a regular system. For those having trouble, if you try copying the dw44.bsp file into your HL2 Ep2 maps folder it may run the map faster making the experience better.
    I have started playing all the entries (time constraints again) and there are (in my opinion) better maps than mine in this mod. I will also post my thoughts on each map here as I get the time to finish them.
    Thanks again especially to you Phillip and all the mappers involved.

    1. You are more than welcome Ross, thanks for entering.

      For those having trouble, if you try copying the dw44.bsp file into your HL2 Ep2 maps folder it may run the map faster making the experience better.

      Why would this make it run better?

      1. Hi Phillip.
        I have found that sometimes when I am making and testing maps, they run better during testing when I play them from HL2 Ep2 as mentioned above, then they slow down a little after being incorporated into a mod. I don’t know why, but occasionally that is my experience. I thought it may help as it looks like a few are having trouble. 🙁

        1. I have just downloaded the Mod and played dw44 from within the Mod and noticed no slowdown. From that I have to deduce that players who experience slowdowns don’t have PC’s with enough hardware to run it properly. Sorry guys.
          My specs are
          Windows Xp Service Pack 3
          AMD 64 x 2 Dual Core Processor 4000+
          2.11 GHz Chipset
          2 GB of RAM
          NVIDEA Graphics Card

          1. I cant recall much noticeable slowdown myself, but I had all my graphic options set to their lowest, including DXlevel 81. However those are the settings that I usually use run HL2:Ep2.

          2. Your probably right Ross but looking at Phillip’s screenshots I notice he went down to the Strider. This would mean that one heck of a lot of action was going on.
            I did not do that – into the room with the stairs up the stairs into the top room fighting all the way and took cover
            I had no frame rate problems at all. Perhaps those who did tried to take out the Strider first.
            Might it have been better not to allow access to the Strider floor, maybe?

            1. Same here. As soon as I saw the strider I ducked into the nearest door with the stairs that led up to the elevators. From there I grabbed the rocket launcher and tucked myself into a corner to pick off strider, snipers and other combine from cover.

              It my actually be that going out into the thick of things kills your framerate.

              1. Grey Acumen, you played dw44 the way I meant it be played. I did not see any reason why players would go down to the strider as they did not have the weapons to destroy it. Because of time constraints, I only spent 3 weeks on the map. This meant I did not have time to fully optimise it or play test it. It was a rush job to make the map and I submitted it a week and a half ahead of the deadline. I am not making excuses, just letting everyone know why it lags on some pc’s.
                It will be the first map to Drowned World 2 when I get around to making it and with proper play testing and optimisation, I hope to make it play well for faster and slower pc’s.

                1. Joe

                  The only maps that lagged for me are yours and mine. They are also were the only maps with flooding parent physbox errors in developer mode. I can only assume somewhere you have something parented to a physbox. Get rid of that and see if it increases performance.

                  1. Thanks Joe. All suggestions are gratefully received.
                    Actually, the girders that fall when the walkway collapses are parented to Physic boxes in order to have them move when scripted. Is there another way to make that sort of thing happen that doesn’t throw up errors?

                    1. Joe

                      Try making it a physics prop with the motion disabled flag set. When you want it to fall trigger it to enable motion.

                    2. You can make it a prop_physics_override if the props don’t show up as normal prop_physics.

  8. MikeS

    I’ve just played the first four:

    Ballistix, despite being bland and unrealistic, presented a fun challenge and used the snipers to good effect. Quite inventive, I thought, if frustrating in places. Although that’s a given when you have three snipers blasting away at you!

    City was poor, IMO. If it had come out five years ago it might have been okay, but judging it by the standards of today it’s not really worth playing. Also, I hate being confined to a square by a few road barriers. And challenge? There was none.

    DW44, started well then started to slow down and stutter forcing me to quit.

    EP X13 is easily the best looking map here, and features some good set pieces. It got a bit frustrating in places. A little more cover when you’re trying to get closer to the snipers” positions would have been appreciated. Still, my fave so far.

  9. Play It Later

    Mixed feeling but I mostly agree with phillip comment

    map 1 not perfrectly design but the gameplay was enjoyable put this one in third
    map 2 in and out that’s it
    map 3 same problems as phillip to big for my computer
    map 4 I really like it and I vote for this one not too difficult good layout what more does I need
    map 5 defenetly not my type of gameplay perhaps because I didn’t really understand how too succeed
    map 6 certainly a funny concept and special but I don’t also like arena map 7 perhaps it’s a simple concept but remenbers me school 🙂 where you was face on a wall and people were moving to you then you say something and turn if the people didn’t stop or move a little they were out so it’s a question of timing and not falling down for me it’s the one I put in second

    sadly I had only three good moment out of 7 maps thats why I give only 4 stars

  10. Play It Later

    “Secondly, DW44 by Ross Walker AKA Sirocco was stunning in its concept and will amaze you when you play it. That is if your machine can handle it. This is one of the reasons it didn’t win — my pc just couldn’t handle it and it was quite stuttery.”

    I’m glad at optimization is being taken into consideration, at least a little. there are some maps that run inexcusably poorly, when very little is actually visible. in some cases framerates can literally be quintupled by spending 5 minutes adding portals or blocking visibility.

  11. Play It Now!

    I have to say that it was interesting to see how different people tackled the competition and I believe it turned out quite well.

    My thoughts match with Phillip for the most part.

    My favourite in the pack would have to be EP2-X13. The map looked beautiful from the start. Nothing struck me as being completely out of place.

    The pace was set well and the enemies weren’t too hard to kill between ducking for cover. I thought it was pretty cool to have the combine try and flank me while being pinned behind a rock by the sniper.

    I really liked the addition of the battery puzzle and scattered soldiers because it gave me the feeling that the snipers weren’t the entire focus of the map. I think that’s what really sold me.

    The only problem I had was that I didn’t spawn with any weapons so I was running around in a panic while the initial combine were attacking me until I randomly picked up a crowbar. That one was probably just me.

    The next on my list was Super Awesome Sniper Arena. Even though I’m not a real fan of arena maps, it was entertaining and it looked very well polished. The announcer voice-over was amusing to listen to as well.

    The game-play was pretty hard. Trying to juggle sniper dodging and fending off swarms of enemies in such a confined space felt almost impossible but it was satisfying when I did it. The twist at the end was something I didn’t expect.

    DW44 looked very nice but it was a pity it was ruined by the massive slowdown after the first sniper. My specs are slightly better than Sirocco’s but it still slows down…

    I tried playing through regardless and was overwhelmed by number of combine shooting at me which I really didn’t expect but it really added to the atmosphere. Nothing like the being dropped into a war zone to get the adrenaline going.

    This map didn’t focus on the snipers but they did seem like an after thought, just another enemy to try to kill. It didn’t feel like you needed to evade the snipers more just don’t get shot by anything.

    The player directions could have been a bit better. I found myself wondering where I needed to go next once I had killed everything. I didn’t really know there was an elevator until after I pressed the random buttons on the wall on the far side.

    There were a couple of bugs that nagged at me but it might be just my computer. One was the rebels following me and then charging into battle with the hunter only to die and fail the mission. the other was a problem with the textures on the raised walkways not showing properly. Did anyone have those problems?

    NovaSniping had some inspiring game-play. The brilliance was the numerous ways to pass/defeat the snipers.It wasn’t till I reached the end that I realised that the snipers could be killed so I had to play it again to see how I could play it that way.

    I would really like to know how Hemuuuli/Sj intended the player to pass each sniper because I could see many different solutions.

    Ballistic was with NovaSniping on the focus with game-play. It wasn’t too hard to see the path that the player needed to take to avoid the sniper but it was paced nicely.

    The visuals disappointed me initially as I was expecting something more realistic when I started but the wacky and unusual styling did allow for some interesting ways to avoid being hit by the sniper.

    Tunnel was fun to play but there wasn’t very much substance to it. I think it may have been a bit more exciting if there was something else going on. Maybe some time pressure or puzzle solving to proceed.

    It wasn’t terribly hard, though I had trouble initially trying not to fall off the platform…

    The city didn’t have to much going on and felt unfinished though I will say that I liked the hatch on the first sniper window, I don’t think I’ve seen that done before.

    All in all very well done.

    Thanks Phillip for running the competition and thanks to those that entered, you have enriched my life just that bit more. 🙂

  12. Sparky575

    Just for the official record, I ran out of time… Slapped the last two snipers in for good measure. (u can really tell eh!) Well done to everyone who took part, thought it was a great competition. Thanks Phillip, I agree with your winner. As soon as I played it I was like “yeah… this man’s gonna win” Though I especially enjoyed joe’s entry, great fun! Golden Pidgeon! Awesome!

  13. Play It Later

    It’s review time!
    Ballistic: Simply my favourite, I had the most fun at this map, the lenght was good, a nice amount of fights and some good ideas, also I liked the idea of a long street where you have slowly to dig towards your enemies. Just had the most fun with it.Only a bit better detail was missing
    City: Pretty small map, the idea with the first sniper was quite nice, and that the others suddenly appear in some windows. But it was much too short and for the small size of the map, detail was also missing. At last I missed more fights with normal troops.
    dw44: Unplayable, the first sniper was quite okay, but after that the map began to lag horrible, don’t use too much destroyable objects.
    x13: Definitely the most beautiful map of all, but simply not my favourite because I missed some creative ideas for the snipers, all 3 snipers are the same. Beautiful map, but boring snipers.
    novasniping: This map has some really nice ideas, just sad that they are hard or just annoying difficult to master. The first sniper was already quite nice, with the guy ever throwing nades at you. After that was my favourite part of this map, the two doors and the sniper behind them. A really nice idea was very difficult to master, the sniper was constantly shooting the doors open or my barricades away which I used to keep the doors closed. Also sadly the part where you have to put a metal plate in front of him didn’t work out that well, it was crazy hard to put the plate onto those small bars without getting shoot by him, also there was no place to put them into position for the gravity gun so that you can put them in front of his face. I got hit several times by my own plates as I tried to put them upwards, also they aren’t very helpful at all, most of the times he just shoot through them like through a sheet of paper. The last wasn’t that bad, just too many mines. Nice ideas but failed at making them proper playable.
    superawesomesniperarena: My HATE-map of this pack, at first the sniper were boring and nothing new, and the cops were just annoying. Also I got constantly hit by that moving glass wall, one time it even killed me. It’s just a boring arena map, nothing special in it (except the nade aim training at the end).
    tunnel: This map had a nice style, industrial cyberpunk like, it was short but quite satisfying. Details were missing and also all snipers were the same but still smooth to play.

    Result: some nice ideas in it, playable as long as you like fighting snipers, also mappers should take a look into these, they might show people how to make snipers more interesting that just an area with a few barricades and a sniper in it.

  14. Mel

    Enjoyed Entry 1, although a bit basic in design and structures it was well planned with a challenging layout.

    Entry 2 was disappointing in comparison, just 3 snipers to take out, after which I could not find any thing else to do, also no constructed finish, or did I miss something?

    Entry 3 looks good with plenty of combat and challenging situations continuing an interesting array of foe. However, like most I could not get through this one due to slow-downs. I got as far as the encounter with the Strider before coming to a complete halt.

    Entry 4 best so far, visuals, layout, lighting, combat and balance of gameplay, gave this a feel of quality without over reliance on just snipping. Hope the author expands this into a two or three map experience, I am sure we would have a candidate for MOY.

    Entry 5 I most be honest, I gave up on this one, could not see the point, but will give it another try.

    Entry 6 Messy but then I don’t like one room arena type games. This one looks very challenging and no doubt it will be much loved by many who enjoy this format.

    Entry 7 Not much point or gameplay to this one, having dodge my way to the end and pressed the button I was just left with a blue screen.

    The two most enjoyable maps were Entry 1 and 4 with entry 4 being a clear winner in my opinion. The 7 entries gave a good variety of formats in approach to the challenge of producing a sniper map, which made the overall playing experience interesting. Thanks you for all the entries and well done to all the authors.

  15. Hemuuuli

    It seems that my map NovaSniping haven’t really hit it’s target audience here because most of player seems to like more action than puzzles and I understand that. Couple of comments wanted to hear diffrent solutions for snipers so here they come:

    First sniper: Grab the combines granade and kill the sniper with it. If you don’t want to kill the sniper you can try to rush through the doors but you’ll get hit atleast once so it isn’t really a good tactic. Again, grab the granade but use it to blow the doors open.

    Second sniper: There are two ways to reach this sniper. The headccrap way in the vents (I made that headcrap there because my playtesters didn’t find that vent without any visual guiding) or you can just rush in the big room and pile up some stuff. When you have reached the sniper use metal planes to block the sniper’s vision. It is easy to adjust them if you press them agains the wall before planting (I am not still happy about this part because it seems to be hard for most of players, I should have used preferred carrying angel). To kill this sniper you gotta use the mine because there are no explosives in this area.

    Third sniper: To simply kill it just throw a hopper. To pass the sniper and force field without killing destroy the electrocity box and lights shut down. The sniper can’t now see you and shoots randomly in the darkness.

    I hope this clarify the puzzles. It took me longer to think of new puzzles and design a variegated map than build it in hammer. I still have a few unused sniper ideas in my head. I admin that the map is a bit rushed due my short chrismas vacation and it could be better.

  16. Play It Now!

    A great idea and a great outcome. I really enjoyed playing through these: my top 3 were DW44, then EP2-X13, then a tie for third between Nova Sniping and Ballistic.

    I thought DW44 was absolutely terrific. I didn’t spot the rocket launcher (duh) and spent a lot of time fighting the dozens of enemies using guns – that’s difficult! On a second run through I found the launcher and that makes life a lot more straightforward. I really like those big indoor spaces, and the contrast between the cramped and awkward start and then the massive indoor space produced a wow response.

    EP2-X13 was very polished and professional and was only very narrowly beaten by DW44. Can’t wait to see more from this highly skilled mapper!

    I liked NovaSniping for the touch of sadism shown by the mapper! That second sniper was very difficult to get past, and putting all the stuff in the wired off space that led to safety once you’d pressed the door button was evil genius.

    Ballistic was the map that gave me the greatest sense that I’d achieved something when I finished it. It was a great mix of obstacle course and combat strategy.

  17. Just finished, I can’t wait for the next competition!

    X13- This was great, my only complaint was that it wasn’t longer. The atmosphere was in my opinion, the best of the whole pack. I thought that the snipers were well placed, I thought that there was enough cover.

    Novasniping- Another good submission, in the second room there was a caged hallway with a sniper overhead, I thought that the purpose for all of the junk was to pile it up on top of the caged hallway so the sniper couldn’t see you.. it wasn’t, but I thought that would’ve been a great idea:(

    Ballistic- Somewhat entertaining, I thought that it could have used better placing of barriers though. It is always frustrating not knowing if where you are going to run next will protect you.

    DW44- I didn’t find the rocket launcher and I had spent so much time trying to figure out how to get past the combine with next to no ammo that I gave up before I was finished .. the big room put me off too.

    SuperAwesomeSniperArena- I don’t usually take to arena styled maps, but this was alright with me. I thought that the style though simple, was fitting. I was confused as to what some of the boxes did.

    City- I started playing and then it was over!

    Tunnel- I enjoyed the simple idea and I had fun.. as others have already said the simplicity and length is also it’s downfall

  18. Play It Now!

    Forgot to post my recommendation!

  19. Maybe?

    Ballistic: Visually, the map is a let down. The lighting is too even, too white, there’s very little contrast or colour in the world. There is also little done in detail-work or blending human and Combine architecture. However, this map does have interesting gameplay progression and escalation. You see your final objective from the beginning of the map, but you must weave and loop in and around obstacles and buildings to get there (a few areas were unpolished or laid out confusingly, though). Soldier placement felt logical and appropriate in most cases.

    City: I don’t really have too much to say about this map, it was very small, short, and didn’t really show me anything noteworthy. There wasn’t enough ammunition and absolutely no room for error. More time spent on it could have meant improvement by large measures and a few other areas and scenarios would have good (The last two snipers felt thrown in).

    dw44: Up to the first sniper is interesting (I used the vending machine as a battering ram), but after that I was treated to one heck of a show-stopping bug. My gfx card shouldn’t have had a problem rendering the fairly simple room and all of its inhabitants, but my framerate dropped into the single digits and stayed there for the rest of the map. This was the only map in the package to have such a bug for me, and given the card I’m running, I definitely think the problem is something to do with the map (faulty entities gobbling up resources, perhaps). Aside from that the big room lacked all of the subtlety and the tactics of the first, I was simply being peppered by dozens of enemies scattered across the entire room. Visually the room is exceedingly cluttered and I didn’t exactly know what my objective is. I thought it was to simply clear the room and kill the Strider, but I missed the elevator (the button was tiny and the elevator itself didn’t stand out in any way). That first hallway had some really ingenious ideas and elements, but the latter half feels uninspired.

    x13: This map really stands by itself, it hits all major categories in satisfying degrees: Gameplay, visuals, pacing, level design. The gameplay is careful and deliberate, you can very often see the designer’s hand in the world, in his careful use of cover, enemy and ammunition placement. The visuals are praiseworthy as well. While not as full and as lush as one might hope, the designer still has done a most admirable job. The terrain is well used, the cliffs and the outlying buildings hem the world in well, and the usage of light is excellent, it isn’t overused and gives the map an extra visual flourish. One major oversight I noticed is the lack of autosaves. While I don’t mind going through the map again, losing all progress to a slight mistake can be a bit disheartening.

    novasniping: This map could have been a challenger to X-13, but I think it definitely had some very deep problems with the gameplay design. There were many ideas incorporated into this small map, but few were adequately communicated. I knew I had to evade or kill the snipers, but the map didn’t communicate clearly what my tools were for doing just that. I guessed correctly that the Combine soldier was a living grenade crate, but the frequency of the falling grenades dissuaded me from attempting to kill the first sniper. For the second sniper, I missed the nearby grate entirely. The headcrab didn’t suggest anything to me, and I even didn’t see him at all on my first try. I just ran into the room underneath the sniper and made an unsuccessful attempt at plugging the hole with barrels and scampering up. Even with the metal plates, the sniper can still aim out of cracks very easily, taking out boxes or myself. The third sniper was the one that made the most sense. Players are familiar with hopper mines, so when they use the gravity gun to uproot and blow one up their application against the sniper becomes immediately apparent. Had the tools been more effectively communicated, I definitely think this map would have been a close contender for first place.

    superawesomesniperarena: The weapon and health crates are clever, and the sports-game kind of setting was very nice, but ultimately this map didn’t really appeal to me. It was also very difficult, I didn’t understand how I was supposed to kill the snipers so they chewed me up pretty good.

    Tunnel: A simple map with an obvious premise. The use of music was nice, but visually the map was empty and unrefined. The gameplay was very basic. While that lets the player immediately grasp how to play the map, it also denies any meaningful play above running behind generators until the player finishes the map. Lack of autosaves is a problem with this one, if you’re killed or you take a slip you must start from square one.

    Conclusion: I’ll admit that I am a very picky player. I save my high praise for the best. One map got my vote, and by a large margin I consider it the best map of the bunch. SLi-WooDy’s EP2-X13 was the complete package, it looked great, played great, the pace was just right and it didn’t get monotonous or frustrating. Overall, it’s a package with mixed results. If you can’t stand snipers in general you should probably give it a pass, but otherwise at least give a few of these maps a look (especially X13 and novasniping). And now some feedback for Phillip! Overall, I think the mapping contest idea is a very good one, the mod packaging serves the contest and the end player very well. I look forward to voting on (and potentially joining!) the next one that rolls around.

    1. Joe

      Super Arena: “I didn’t understand how I was supposed to kill the snipers so they chewed me up pretty good.”
      You have to survive until the finale. Which would probably get you chewed up even more. 😉

      1. I must confess I absolutely HATE playing sniper tag :p

    2. Toothless

      What I did to get around the 2nd sniper in Nova sniping is used the black rack below the sniping hole to my advantage and put a lot of barres and metal sheets so they rest on the rack until finally i could build up to the 2nd vent with boxes and get into the vent

  20. Pingback: Sniperville « zwieracz

  21. Mel

    I have since managed to fight my way through DW44, after initial slow downs, the frame rate get a bit smoother once you get out of the wide corridor with the Strider in view. Having now finished this map, it may well have got my vote had I not given up at the first attempt. Also the nova map sounds more interesting having read a few of the comments, so I think I will give that another chance.

  22. dougjp
    Play It Now!

    First, many thanks to the participants and Phillip for the (GREAT) concept of a mapping competition, and for putting it together as a mod.

    My favorite was Ballistic and DW44 slightly less so, followed by EP2. I gave them 8/10, 8/10 and 7/10 respectively. Followed by Tunnel 5/10, City 4/10 and Nova Sniping & Super Awesome Sniping both 2/10.

    Commenting just on the top 2, I found them enjoyable to play, with action, puzzles and a variety of situations.

    Despite voting Ballistic my #1, there is a major flaw in being able to jump off the roof, having pushed the moving platform forward as a strategy move. It completely covered the exit method and probably should have been limited in its movement so as not to do that. Jumping off the roof allowed me to play on with no hope of ever going further.

    Looking forward to the next competition!

    1. dougjp

      Strange indeed. I was logged in (obviously as it shows above who this is from) yet recommendation images weren’t available.

      Anyway, I would have said “Play it Now”.

  23. Can’t really add anything new here. I think I agree with most of the reviews.

    I’ve only just finished playing the first map. It’s nice to get these quick challenges every once in a while. I’ve always enjoyed the challenge the sniper adds to a level. I am looking forward to playing the rest of the entries.

    Maybe next time it’ll be a driving map contest…. just kidding. I hate 99% of the driving segments. What tunnel has a 90 degree turn?!?!

    Anyhow, great idea and great results. Nice work everyone.

  24. zagles Only map that was not horrible is X13. The reason(not to mention it looked fantastic and overall was fun to play) this is the best map is because it kept it simple! Grab a grenade and kill the sniper!
    Other maps were just…ugh frustrating, not fun to play, cheap. (the arena was kinda cool but impossible difficulty w/ more than 2 snipers)

    I hope to see more maps from X13 author!

    And please no more sniper map contests.

    1. Only map that was not horrible is X13

      I disagree and think that’s really not fair. NovaSniping and Super Awesome Sniper Arena were very clever.

    2. Hemuuuli

      I am almost reliefted to hear someone saying straight what he thinks about my map. It cleary wasn’t for everyone. I like when people just say if they don’t approve something but ofcource some reasoning woundn’t hurt. Don’t you like puzzles or was the puzzles too hard for you?

      People have diffrent opnions and tastes and I feel that I have achieved something when some people tell me that they love the map or hate it (both are strong emotions, not just “ok”) – I like to create something new and not just copycat what have already tested good and working and when I get dramatic diffrences in feedback I know I have created somethign fresh. Same goes for more traditional arts.

  25. I positively loved the Arena because of its flamboyant attitude and unique look and feel.

  26. I do not find directions of how to get the mods into the sniperville mod.

    I have downloaded the sniperville when I open it it says sniperville compitition on the title screen.

    However when you go to select new game that opens and their are no games to choose. I do not see an area that says how to add the mods to the mod?

    please help thenks

    1. Sounds like there is a problem with the installation. Please try and download it again and post here.

      1. esswok

        yup you were right phil it was an download/install issue. All works fine. it was pretty cool!

  27. Pingback: Episode #67 » Podcast17

  28. Play It Later

    #1 EP2-X13; Yes this was the all around best mod of this group. Not overly challenging but best visual and use of cover. Side mission to find a battery in the tunnel. A little layout repetition but not enough to detract from this fun map.

    #2 Ballistic: Not the best visually, but very challenging. If you used cover correctly it was possible to get to the sniper with only a little damage. This one gave me the most satisfaction at completion. Died the first time through at the ladder. I wasn’t crouched and my head got blown off.

    #3 DW44: Could not finish, but it was #3 anyhow up to the point my system slowed to a crawl. It clearly started off where Drowned World ended. Had same problem with Drowned World as I remember.

    The rest: Did not like Nova Sniping or Sniper Arena. Tunnel played on my fear of heights, so I liked it for that.

  29. Carstairs

    Ballistic: On the whole it felt nice and varied, darting between and around the buildings along the road. The combine were a nice addition as they gave the map a setting as though you were actually attempting to attack a fortified position. However the graphics really do let it down, and the final quarter or so of the map felt odd and muddled together.

    City: I thought this one was a bit of a shame really. The setting seemed neat as I quite liked the idea of an urban scene. But overall it was far too short and the last 2 snipers appearing just seemed random.

    DW44: Couldn’t play past the first sniper so can’t really comment on it.

    EP2-X13: I would have to agree with everyone else here that this was a very good map. Graphics were good, a good variety of things to shoot at, and even the battery was a nice addition. If NovaSniping hadn’t been in the pack this would have easily been my favourite. But the reason why I didn’t pick this one as it doesn’t really feel like it was something new and could have been lifted out any number of levels. While this isn’t really a bad thing, and it would have probably been quite good if it was part of a larger whole, just on its own made it feel simple and straight forward.

    NovaSniping: Easily my favourite of the whole pack. The layout and graphics were good just like EP2-X13, but the only thing that made it stand out for me was that I actually had to stop and think about what I had to do and not simply charge forwards like I did on EP2-X13. Also as a bonus I replayed this map earlier and did all 3 snipers in a slightly different way.

    Super Awesome Sniper Arena: Tbh I don’t like arena maps so this was screwed from the start. Though I suppose that it’s a novel idea, just it isn’t suited to me.

    Tunnel: This one was just too bland, lacking in variety of setting or enemies, but since its your first released map I shouldn’t be too harsh and it is infinatly better than anything I could produce 😀

    Overall it was a good competition, hope there will be another one soon 😀

  30. Pingback: Garść informacji…

  31. Personal Favourite

    I’ve finally gotten around to playing the winning maps of this event and I’m just staggered !

    This is one of the best times I’ve had in quite awhile playing a bundled compilation of this sort. Fantastic concepts, beautiful mapping, wonderfully challenging and an all around ” swearing it up ” good time !
    Belated thanks to you Philip for hosting this event and to all the talented individuals who worked so diligently. Wonderful stuff !

  32. Play It Later

    The snipers were a pain (which is their purpose), which means it was really satisfying to kill them.

    Ep2-X13 was, for me, the best.

    NovaSniper was a close second, but I had to run through it in god mode first (after dying at least 5 times) to see how to play it. The second time through, I finished it (after dying at least 10 times) with 20 whole health at the end.

    Ballistic was perhaps the most fun. While it’s probably not realistic to have 3 snipers right next to each other covering pretty much a single entry point, that made it more challenging.

    DW44 – the first sniper was the best part of this. I had lag in the main chamber, but finished in spite of it.

    Tunnel was interesting.

    City was too short. There were some texture problems (when I got right next to a door, I think, I saw a brick texture?). I thought the second and third snipers were clever.

    Super Awesome Sniper Arena wasn’t for me. I played it through in god mode. If I played it enough, I might be able to do it without cheating, but I don’t like to replay games that much, let alone a single mod or map.

  33. Play It Now!

    Really interesting, overall.

    1) Ballistic : by far my favorite, I think this really fits the title at perfection… A long road, with numerous obstacles, enemies, and at the end a “boss” fight against 3 snipers, and also some entertaining mecanisms.

    2) Ep2-X13 : nearly toe-to-toe with Ballistic, some good sniper areas, Combine, zombies… Fun from beginning to the end. Each sniper was a different challenge.

    3) DW44 : Adding a story to a map competition is not easy, however this modder do it. I really like the “big” map and the cool effects of everything getting blown up, however the snipers were just a challenge “added”, not the center of the attention… I was a bit confused, also, with the big part, at the beginning… Too many enemies and it was too dark. But fun overall.

    4) NovaSniping : The challenge (getting rid of snipers, with whatever you have at hand and sometimes not killing them), was a real brainstorming. I found that however sometimes very frustrating… Re-lauching the grenades for the first was really a combination of BIG luck and dexterity (numerous re-loads…), the second took me nearly an hour (I was completly lost, and this guy kept killing me…), the third one was surprisingly easy…
    A good challenge, but it get on my nerves…

    5) SuperAwesome Sniper Area : good ambiance, good effects, but I found that too difficult… Also, I couldn’t kill the sniper one, so I don’t have finished the map yet…

    6) City : too short, too easy.. Too bad!

    7) Tunnel.

  34. I have not posted a recommendation as I have not been able to finish any of the sniper scenerios yet but I will keep trying as they are realy well put together but soooooooooooooo hard.It may be an age thing as I am stuck on every level but well done all who entered.

  35. Play It Now!

    1. Ballistic: Tough, but fun.
    2. City: Small, little easy, not so fun.
    3. DW44: My favorite!
    4. EP2 X13: Second favorite!
    5. Nova Snipping: Tough, but fun and intresting.
    6. Tunnel: So-so
    7. Super Awesome Snipping Arena: Very hard, had to play in god mode, but it was fun.

  36. Hec
    Personal Favourite

    Sometimes great pieces of work must be appreciated along the time goes by…, and here I am reviewing another definitely classic in HL2 mapping history.

    I’m not quite sure why I hadn’t reviewed this one, but now that I am doing it I just can say this is amazing, I think if i’m don’t get wrong, this comp. in as an exclusive it was the beggining of everything and is just great.

    The whole bunch of well recived entries on this one are centered in just one big strategic combat piece “the sniper” is just a great idea, that only Phillip can actually bring us to life in a form of a mapping comp. so is great just by that.

    In here i’m gonna be in debt with you about particular details in every entry as I just can’t recall my mind of many of them, but just looking the screenshots, I remember I loved the first entrie which is Ballistic if I don’t get wrong, the winner map EP2-X13 Phillip choosed was also a great worthy winner, and the DW44 entrie was just great also, and like that, the rest of the entries are worthy too.

    So go on and play it!!!, and well remember this was the beggining of mapping competitions, this started that especial taste only this site can has for the HL community so remember here in competitions definitely must be on ur play list, boy…

    And by the way I forgot to say this is just another comp. it deserves all ur time to be played, so take ur time in every entrie u choose to enjoy.

  37. Play It Now!

    I’m just going through the old ‘villes in preparation for the next contest – can’t believe I haven’t played some of them. I’ll keep the review brief since everything has been covered by other people. There is a real range of approaches and styles, from the basic like Tunnel to the more complex. My favourite was Ep2-X13 for some really nice graphics and integrating the Snipers well whilst still having plenty of variety.

    Overall they were all worth a look and I’m not sure why I hadn’t got around to this sooner…

  38. I could not load this. After installing it manually and running it through the steam library I get a black screen with music. I wait and wait but it never clears (the music does die off though). If I push the windows key to go back to desktop I see the steam error: Can’t find background image materials/console/_01_widescreen.vtf

    (Similar problems with beginningville, middleville, halloweenville, verticalville, forestville, crossbowville.)

  39. Unq
    Play It Later

    First, I had a problem starting the mod as well. I had to copy and paste a fix for gameinfo.txt and that still left me with weirdness like a blue HUD and generic text for the Saved message and the weapon names.

    My favorite of the bunch is EP2-X13. Great setting, some minor puzzle elements, and the snipers are used to perfection. They felt naturally integrated rather than the sole purpose of the map.

    Others I liked were NovaSniping (clever approach with you having only the grav gun) and DW44 (really liked the huge arena, but damn it was dark and challenging).

    Found some of the maps really hard but some of that is due to the damage done by the snipers. I found Super Awesome Sniper Arena to be the hardest of the bunch, and gave up after a few tries. It’s a nice idea and maybe it’s meany to be near impossible but it ends up frustrating.

    Overall, a nice mix of maps here that employ the snipers in different ways which is nice. Worth playing.

  40. DaZ

    This is my review after playing the level for The Ville Retrospective event and live stream.

    Over all I have given this pack a Maybe? score as I found most of the levels frustrating or lacking in game play variety. This is not to say that there aren’t any good levels in here, it’s just that you have to dig around to find them! With that said, here is the breakdown of each level:

    Ballistic by sndexter6

    This level while fairly basic in its looks, started off as quite a fun level to play. Dodging in and out of cover and slowly progressing towards a set of 3 sniper nests. It was fun clearing out the various side areas of enemies. The level slow devolved in quality as you got closer to the sniper nests. There was not enough variation in combat and the level got confusing to navigate towards the end.

    City by Sparky575

    This level feels unfinished and poorly tested as it is possible to get outisde of the playable area in a few different ways. The map is very unfairly balanced as when you take out the first sniper, another two are spawned behind the player without any warning which usually results in your death. The level does not end which left me confused as to what to do next.

    DW44 by Ross Walker AKA Sirocco

    This is one of the better maps in the pack, although I think it suffers from throwing too much at the player too early. There really isn’t much room to breathe as you are constantly being fired at by *something* 🙂 The intro is fairly good although I found the long corridor with the sniper in it at the start to be fairly annoying. The huge atrium afterwards is a cool idea but I think there is just too much stuff shooting at you for players to really understand the environment. I did feel good to slowly clear out the area but it felt very chaotic to do so.

    EP2-X13 by SLi-WooDy AKA Phil

    This is my personal favourite level of the pack. Mostly because it is a full Half-Life 2 experience that also incorporates snipers, rather than a completely cut down experience with only snipers. There is exploration, some puzzle solving, combat without snipers, and combat incorporating snipers. And a gravity gun! The map also looked very nice. Great use of lighting! If you only play one level in the pack, make it this one!

    NovaSniping by Samuli Jääskeläinen AKA Hemuuuli/Sj

    This is a level that I would like in theory but in execution it is very annoying. It is a puzzle map where you have to work out how to survive each room by not getting shot 🙂 It starts off fairly well but quickly devolves into frustration as the rooms require you to do very tricky manoeuvres without any assistance. The end I found a bit cheap as you couldn’t see where the sniper was and therefore how to kill them.

    Super Awesome Sniper Arena by Joe Albericci AKA ThePengu

    Top marks for presentation and original ideas! Unfortunately I found this map quickly became annoying. The various power ups that are dropped into the arena are not explained to the player in any way, so I had no idea what any of them did. The un-killable snipers are what put the final nail in the coffin for me. Now I am from the Quake era of game design where if you have an arena then you damn well let the player move around inside of it, but here the snipers literally stop you from moving at all once they are all active. The fact that you cant kill them to give yourself some breathing room is a huge missed opportunity I feel, and would have made the map much more enjoyable as a result. With some tweaks this would be great!

    Tunnel by James Jerram AKA GIJames

    A very simple “hide behind stuff while advancing to avoid the sniper” type level. Nothing really interesting to write home about here. You advance, and hide behind stuff, to avoid a sniper 😛 It is very bare bones with no variation.

  41. Maybe?

    And thus, I start my journey through all the villes. I was a bit skeptical of this one, as snipers often annoy me. Here’s what I thought of the maps:

    It is bad

    I didn’t enjoy this one. While the layout was clever, it felt very much like somebody’s first map in terms of both visuals and gameplay. The map is blocky and not too pretty to look at. There are multiple points when the enemies have a clear advantage on you, and a few points where you have to run across somewhere hoping that the snipers don’t get you. There’s also a room with twenty or so manhacks, which is not something that should be inflicted on anyone. However, I think it shows some promise.

    It is dire!

    It’s a square area with snipers and a few combine to kill and no ending. It’s not poorly mapped, there was effort put into it, but it’s just not worth playing.

    It is good

    I like the underground environment in this map, and it looks pretty good too. Here’s the thing you should know about it, though: it’s really difficult. There’s a lot of gunfire going off all over the place, and you’ll have to hide behind things a lot. However, it’s very well designed, and it’s very fun. I like this one.

    It is good

    I always like foresty environments. This is a fun map, although very linear. There are both combine and a few zombies to fight, and lots of hiding from snipers. My one complaint is that the second underground entrance is positioned so that if you didn’t kill the sniper first, he always gets a free hit on you. Otherwise, it’s a nice map.

    Nova Sniping
    It is dire!

    This one has some cool ideas, but in practice it’s just frustrating. I like that you can kill none or all of them but I just didn’t have fun with this map. Also, why put vents on both sides if only one side works? It’s confusing and took me a long time to figure out that I was supposed to go through the other vents.

    Super Awesome Sniper Arena
    It is okay

    This is really cool, I like the glass box mechanic. However, it’s not for me, as I don’t like arena maps. I think some people will enjoy it though.

    It is dire!

    Exactly what it sounds like. It’s just a tunnel with a sniper and things to hide behind. Easy and pointless but I like the music.


    If you want to download it for those two maps, go ahead. Who knows, maybe you’ll enjoy the others more than I did, but overall I thought this was kinda meh. Next up, HunterVille!

  42. Play It Later
    It is great!

    I didn’t like this on my first game. Seemed rather boxed in with an overly unfair advantage given to the snipers – who are incredibly fast and accurate!! The mini-battles are great fun and I liked each and every moment of this game too. Such a hard game but well thought out and I loved it.

    It is bad

    Quite a short, basic and strange layout to this. After attracting the soldiers to my location (!) I killed them and ran as fast as I could to collect the ammo to kill that sniper. It was now that the game displayed a cunning move (it’s best/only). Hmm that caught me out nicely!! However, I didn’t know what to do after these were dead… It never ended? Odd and disappointing. Very short map!

    It is great!

    Wow where do I begin? This could have been so perfect with more thought put into it. It’s so cruel with the enemy having an almost 3D advantage over you and few places to safely take cover – this will certainly require lots of saving!!!

    The start was a little weird and I had no way to get across the electrified water without losing a little energy thanks to the steam pipe… Perhaps I missed something? Afterwards, the battle was nice before seeing what was such an overwhelming arena. Huge!

    Boy is this a hard game!! I like the idea of the rocket launcher which got rid of the oddly placed Strider (was that even needed?). Also, this made it possible to kill off many soldiers which seemed to have a massive advantage over me – so many times I died. Perhaps the crossbow might have been a great idea also? It would have made great fun to pick off those distant guys.

    The ending was lame and the Snipers seemed like nothing more than an after-thought. But this is a good map overall and certainly gets the heart racing!! With some spit and polish to the rough/great idea, I think I’d have rated this top marks.

    Fwiw, I suffered none of the slowdown that others experienced. It was the same framerate throughout. My gfx card only has 1gb Vram so I always lower the texture level to medium as a default. Just my 2c.

    It is great!

    I really loved this. I’d have given it Top Marks but it just wasn’t long enough. Yes, I really enjoyed it THAT much I almost had tears in my eyes when it abruptly ended! Great design with nice layout and tons of grenades to throw. I spent ages lobbing grenades and having my fun – but it’s just too short.

    Loved it but wanted more 🙂

    It is okay

    This has some superb ideas and great thought obviously went into it. The start confused me but I guess the soldier lobbed over a nicely placed grenade as I noticed the doors had become open. The next was another cunning idea but so cruel. I didn’t manage to complete this map I’m sorry to say, it was just too hard. I couldn’t find a way to block the sniper with anything as he simply blew it away with his shots. I figured I was to climb inside the vents on the other side but instead I was just making a blooded mess on the ground, so many times! Lol

    With more thought to the methods used, and a lower PITA difficulty level, this could have been great. For now, it’s just too hard for little ol me! 🙁

    Super Awesome Sniper Arena
    It is bad

    I liked the futuristic feel to this and the ideas were kinda unique. I liked it but it’s not really something that appeals to me nor what I want from a HL2 game. I can see why many would love this but it’s not my cuppa tea… Sorry.

    It is dire!

    Okay… umm… hide and crawl forward. Very little to this and it looks drab also. Nice audio however. Again, this isn’t something which personally appeals to me in the slightest.

    Ballistic, DW44 and EP2-X13 are the only reasons I have for rating this so highly. The others either didn’t appeal (to me personally) or were just too damn hard (guess which one that is lol). Very nice “Ville” this one and I was shocked just how engrossing I found X13, even though it’s too short. I liked DW44 but it was often quite unfair and I wanted a long-range weapon and somewhere good to take cover. Ballistic probably gets my vote for the best one here – good cover, good weapons, good battles and great fun.
  43. Play It Later
    It is good

    Decent gameplay, but visually not as much. This entry had some ideas I thought were nice. Combat was quite easy; there is always a way to have a huge upper hand in battle.
    As I stated, this entry does not look that great. It’s not ugly, it’s just a bit minimal.

    It is dire!

    The only real positive I can say about this entry was that the visuals were okay. You need to kill the snipers by using SMG grenades. This would’ve worked better if you actually had infinite ammo. If you miss a shot, you have to start over. Another thing that annoyed me very much was that when you kill the first sniper, the other two just appear immediatly without warning, and they are able to shoot you in the second they appear.
    The creator also forgot to implement that you get brought back to the menu after you completed the map. This will make players think they did something wrong/something else still needs to happen.

    It is good

    I enjoyed this entry for the most part. It isn’t visually lacking, that’s for sure. The combat is good. I didn’t like the part where you get the RPG though, because at that part you basically just have to shoot every enemy with the RPG which sounds satisfying at first, but it’s quite boring in my opinion. There was also a strider, which I even forgot was there because of how little it adds to the battle.
    Enemies were quite easy to defeat, it felt like the creator lowered their health, which may have been the case.
    Overall, this was a quite enjoyable entry.

    It is great!

    My favorite from this competition. After the previous entries I was overwhelmed by how amazing this looked! As for the gameplay, it’s all great. There is some variety in combat, which I liked. It isn’t all about the snipers. They are quite easy to defeat, since there is a lot of space to throw a grenade in.
    I noticed a lot of ammo for the pistol, but I didn’t even have the gun. Not that it was necessary, using your SMG works fine as well.

    It is okay

    This entry was a bit hard for me to rate. The map is kind of cut up into three sections, each with one sniper and a challenge to kill the sniper. I enjoyed the first part, I thought it was pretty cool that you had to throw the grenades from the Soldier in the sniper hole. The third part was very simple but it featured a cool idea. The second part is what I hated about this entry. It relies on physics props, and it’s not ideal to stack up boxes while a sniper can 2-shot you to death. It was not a lot of fun to keep pressing the reload save button because everything fell over again. If this section had been good, this entry would’ve gotten a It’s Good or an It’s Great.

    Super Awesome Sniper Arena
    It is bad

    If you like arena-style maps, this is for you. I didn’t really enjoy this myself, I thought the combat was bad. The combat is basically everything this mod has, hence the rating.

    It is dire!

    This was a really bland entry. The map is a tunnel, as the title suggests, where you run from cover to cover. The map uses about three or four textures and all the places where you can take cover are the same prop copy-pasted. I found the sniper bullets to be quite easy to dodge.
    And the map ends with a… fade to blue?


    Overall I think this is worth a play. There are some bad entries, but then again some good ones as well. I suggest giving them all a play and making an opinion for yourself.

  44. Play It Later

    I should preface this by saying that I don’t enjoy snipers in Half-Life games. They’re unpredictable, they can hit you even if you’re hiding behind a prop (especially if you’re holding it), they’re fast, they deal too much damage… While this did affect my overall enjoyment of the maps, some of the participants handled the enemy very creatively, which I have to give them props for.

    It is good

    I agree with the review in the article, for the most part. Sure, the lighting and visuals weren’t particularly impressive (some of the areas even felt empty), but the map makes very good use of the snipers and is structured around them. Cover is placed intelligently and I can’t say I ever felt lost. Some of the combat encounters were a little overwhelming (the manhack building and the playground), but far from impossible. There are also some interesting mechanisms you can use to your advantage, like the moving box.

    It is dire!

    Let’s start with the positive: the map, while very small in size, doesn’t look too bad. Now the negatives: you shoot two Combine soldiers, and then three snipers placed in arbitrary locations; and since the second and third appear immediately after you’ve killed the preceding one, you’re pretty much guaranteed to die at some point. The map also doesn’t end, even though there’s nothing left to do after the third sniper.

    It is bad

    The map’s start was somewhat promising: there’s dialogue, flashy explosions, a corridor with a sniper and a short puzzle. Then you clear out a tunnel with some soldiers and a hunter, which brings you to the main arena of this map, and… oh boy. It’s supposed to look impressive, but to me it looked like a bunch of catwalks crawling with soldiers and some weird… floaty spinny things? I don’t know what to make of this location, honestly. Anyway, that’s not the main problem: all of those soldiers, two snipers, plus a strider for good measure, immediately start shooting you the second you enter their line of sight. And there are very few places in the map where you aren’t in it. Furthermore, the snipers are rather useless: they’re right out in the open and they’re less accurate than the hundreds of soldiers that always know where you are. I ended up hiding in a corner and shooting rockets at anything that moves until things stopped shooting at me for a whole second. After that, you don’t know where to go: there are doors all around the arena that either don’t open, or do so into a wall. Eventually the lift which you’re supposed to take activates (not sure what the trigger for it was), but there’s still a problem: you can make it go further up than it’s supposed to and trap yourself… Once you figure out how to make it go down, you reach the end.

    It is great!

    First of all, this map looks great. It mostly uses EP2’s textures, which is a good sign. The snipers are all simply taken out by grenades after crawling around behind cover, which isn’t all too innovative, but still fun. There’s plenty of combat otherwise, too, either with Combines or headcrabs/zombies. All three main sections are fairly different in both visuals and content (one has a lot of soldiers to fight, one has you looking for a battery in a sewer, etc.). One thing I don’t understand is the purpose of the pistol ammo packs – did I miss a pistol somewhere? Also, you can find Alyx’s gun at the very end, which is bugged, and it’s not like there are that many enemies you can use it on at that point. In conclusion, a solid map, and probably my favorite.

    It is okay

    Even though this map is extremely creative, I did not actually enjoy my time with it, mostly because of the second sniper – I’ll get to him in a second. I appreciate the map’s focus being placed entirely on snipers; in fact, I would say none of the other maps take the competition’s theme as seriously as this one. The map can apparently be completed without killing any of the snipers, but I don’t understand how, since the first sniper will kill you almost immediately if you try, and the third sniper’s death is tied to the victory condition, if I understand correctly. Speaking of these snipers, they were both fairly simple challenges to overcome. Getting past the second one consists of two parts, specifically two vent climbs. At first, it took me a while to even figure out what to do, since I couldn’t find the first vent (the mapper did place a headcrab there to make it easier, but I thought that was just a regular platform). Climbing into it is a challenge because the physics props refuse to cooperate and the sniper is shooting at you the whole time. Then, you’re supposed to barricade the sniper’s nest, which presents the same problems. The only reason I managed to enter the second vent is because of a column that served as cover while I built a prop staircase. In the end, these problems prevent me from giving this map an “It’s Good”.

    Super Awesome Sniper Arena

    I have no idea how to complete this map – the second sniper appearing makes it pretty much impossible. Nevertheless, I do appreciate the idea and visuals.

    It is dire!

    You just run from identical cover to identical cover down a very bland, dark tunnel while a machine shoots at you. Eventually, you reach it and the screen fades to blue in lieu of an actual ending. Well, at least there’s the possibility of falling to your death. I don’t know what the purpose of the scanners was, they didn’t really hinder progression in any way.

  45. Play It Now!

    Ep2_x13 is a play it now. The rest, not so much.

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