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Fan film does an exceptional job of porting Valve's best-selling saga into live action!

Posted by Henley on Feb 13th, 2009

You might not have heard of the Purchase Brothers, but after today I think it's safe to say you will. Recently added to youtube is their latest piece called 'Escape from City 17', which is a live action short about a couple of rebels trying to get out of City 17 (from Half-Life 2). Originally made to test production techniques, the Purchase Brothers liked the idea so much they've expanded it into a mini-series with part 2 already on the way.

Purchase wrote:Originally envisioned as a project to test out numerous post production techniques, as well as a spec commercial, it ballooned into a multi part series. Filmed guerilla style with no money, no time, no crew, no script, the first two episodes were made from beginning to end on a budget of $500.

Make sure you subscribe to their youtube channel so you can know when the new epsiode comes out!

Post comment Comments  (0 - 50 of 79)
eviltoast499 Feb 13 2009 buried:


first post liek omg omg omg

-86 votes     reply to comment
Drakojin Feb 13 2009 says:

Great short! Fantsastic effects, and use of game sounds was nice.

+16 votes     reply to comment
danw13335 Feb 13 2009 says:

Saw this on Kotaku earlier today. Awesome job to the Purchase Brothers. It's amazing that this was made on a $500 budget.

+22 votes     reply to comment
Bird_of_Prey Feb 13 2009 replied:

That really is very impressive.

+5 votes     reply to comment
Dnst Feb 14 2009 replied:

Where is the Donate! Button? :)

+12 votes     reply to comment
AJ_Quick Feb 13 2009 says:

yay my hometown did a good

+1 vote     reply to comment
LIONz Feb 14 2009 replied:

Are you from Latvia? :D

+2 votes     reply to comment
Tri182 Feb 13 2009 says:

Most epic short movie ever.

+3 votes     reply to comment
mike_app Feb 13 2009 says:

yea man this is awesome work y the hell cant a stdio make a movie to great game like HL, aweome work guys looking forward to see what else you guys do. want one of those combine suits!!!

+2 votes     reply to comment
c3lhas Feb 13 2009 says:


+4 votes     reply to comment
Bird_of_Prey Feb 13 2009 says:

Great stuff! I look forward to more!

+3 votes     reply to comment
DarkLord-pnd- Feb 13 2009 says:

Good god, this is awesome

+2 votes     reply to comment
iliketokillagainpl Feb 14 2009 says:

That was so friggin epic man...

+4 votes     reply to comment
Saint_Stan Feb 14 2009 says:

OMG! This is just epic.

+2 votes     reply to comment
salazam Feb 14 2009 says:

Awsome Cant wait for the next!

+3 votes     reply to comment
Otreum Feb 14 2009 says:

While i'm not exactly a fan of half life 2's gameplay or anything, I have always thought that it would do well for a movie or series of movies.
THIS, is outstanding, i've seen high budget films do some really really shonky jobs of movies as i'm sure most of you have...I mean take the real life Dragon Ball Z movie for example...what a joke! It's like the Mortal Kombat movie but far far faaar worse.

For such a small budget, these guys have started something great.
Now if only a big wig movie director (definately uwe boll XD....jk) would help these guys out to make it into something full blown, and also get valve on board, we could be seeing a full blown official half life 2 movie.
Lets just hope it gets that far, but even if it doesn't, this still rocks :)

+9 votes     reply to comment
Robok Feb 14 2009 replied:

That was my first reaction (and opinion on HL2 as well) after watching the video, reminded me a bit of that Omaha Beach Assault short-film that was also made by few guys which also looked pretty amazing.

Really hoping to see what they have in mind next :)

+4 votes     reply to comment
Fjahgo Feb 14 2009 replied:

You have a link to that omaha film you mention? Which game is it based on?

Other than that: This HL2 film is amazing. The use of game sounds just completes it.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Lurker49a Feb 15 2009 replied:

To Fjahgo, it's not something based on a game. The short was a recreation of the real life invasion of Omaha Beach. Three guys did it using various techniques. Don't have a link to a video, tried looking.

+2 votes     reply to comment
D3@DM4N Feb 14 2009 says:


-4 votes     reply to comment
ausbushman Feb 14 2009 says:

That's amazing! Brilliant work.

+3 votes     reply to comment
tnathan475 Feb 14 2009 says:

Must watch for anyone, half life fan or not. superb work.

+4 votes     reply to comment
Jesusfreak Feb 14 2009 says:

Amazing... truly amazing.

+3 votes     reply to comment
Mrksmt9 Feb 14 2009 says:

Pretty much spot on awesome

+3 votes     reply to comment
Fast_Train Feb 14 2009 says:

It was amazing!

+3 votes     reply to comment
RogerRamjet Feb 14 2009 says:

Excellent... wanting to see the next episode... even though that was just a shot... they have done a great job with post production (only once scene, was over green) and even the acting was not too bad.. the shorts at the end look brilliant with the zombine... great work... worth watching in HD on YouTube guys...

+4 votes     reply to comment
RogerRamjet Feb 14 2009 replied:

Man, just tried to got to and their account has been suspended... not a good first impression... PB, would be happy to host your site guys!

+2 votes     reply to comment
Henley Author
Henley Feb 14 2009 replied:

Its because of the bandwidth rape, not anything else :P

+4 votes   reply to comment
Dremth Feb 14 2009 replied:

yea i tried it yesterday :(
that sucks for both us and them

+1 vote     reply to comment
sk8ordie97 Feb 16 2009 replied:

this is episode one dude

+1 vote     reply to comment
Apnissen May 26 2009 replied:

Its back up now anyway.

+1 vote     reply to comment
SinKing Feb 14 2009 buried:


No script - I see...
First 1:30 are impressive and then when the "story" surfaces it turns out to be a run around a bandwaggon. WHY? Why not ASK for a writer???
At Crew United, etc. people, you find people, who can actually write you a story!

-6 votes     reply to comment
Daystranger Feb 14 2009 replied:

Go away, whiner.
You're just jealous. :D

+5 votes     reply to comment
cosypeter Feb 15 2009 replied:

Escape from City 17.

Don't you get it, dummy ?

+3 votes     reply to comment
Zidclo Mar 5 2010 replied:

If you have ever played half-life 2, and the episodes, and then after finishing them you played through it all again (starting with HL1); then maybe you might understand really well that the last free aspect of mankind were these rebels (like the characters in the video) and the major event that occurs in HL2 is when all of the last free people are trying to get out of City 17.

Sorry, but for a short, this was absolutely true and perfect to the ideals that Half-Life 2 and its subsequent episodes have set for their own story. It felt right.

+2 votes     reply to comment
Tatsur0 Feb 14 2009 says:

Really impressive work guys. I will definitely be keeping a look out for your next project and recommend this video for all and not just gamers.

+1 vote     reply to comment
LORDDEREX Feb 14 2009 says:

My god, my god.

This is far the best movie clip i have ever seen, i really got the "Half-Life 2-Feeling" and $500 budget, its unbelievable.
I really hope we can buy episodes later, so we support the excellent work they have put together!

Truly epic, my god...

Half-Life 2 4Ever, and the mods/movies around it.

I cant remember when i saw something this impressive last time.

0 votes     reply to comment
Darth.Hunter Feb 14 2009 says:

Well captured HL2 atmosphere, love how they mixed real film material with Machinima CGIs. It all becomes one very good composition. A pretty short film though, I hope that the upcoming episode reveals more and also gives the series a little more of a story aspect.

+2 votes     reply to comment
BladeRunner162 Feb 14 2009 says:

Trully epip, great work. cant wait for the second.

+1 vote     reply to comment
MagicYuri Feb 14 2009 says:

Pure awesomeness

+1 vote     reply to comment
Dnst Feb 14 2009 says:

The film is of a good quality and I liked the nice atmosphere. Do you offer a High-Resolution download?

+1 vote     reply to comment
gtgamewizard Feb 14 2009 says:

awesome yust awesome wy dont they make a rea movie out of this schould be cool.

+1 vote     reply to comment
tonypotter Feb 14 2009 says:


0 votes     reply to comment
Dremth Feb 14 2009 replied:

gordon was probably on that train out of there

+2 votes     reply to comment
mr.renegade Feb 15 2009 replied:

didnt the citadel explode when they almost left the danger zone? noes D: that means these guys are goners

+1 vote     reply to comment
stat1cshade Feb 14 2009 says:

pretty cool will definately be checking out the rest of it

+2 votes     reply to comment
FJS Feb 14 2009 says:

I just love it.

0 votes     reply to comment
$n!p3r Feb 14 2009 says:

VEry nice!!!

will be thar any full film ????

+2 votes     reply to comment
zurf3r Feb 14 2009 says:

the most epic hl2 movie ever!

+2 votes     reply to comment
WhiteHawke Feb 14 2009 says:

If these guys made this with 500$, I imagine they could make a real, 1 and a half hour movie, with 500$ per every five minutes - 9000$.

So if these guys had a million bucks, like so many FAILED game-to-movie productions that end up looking like lame cosplays, I can't even fathom the awesomeness it would turn out to be.

+6 votes     reply to comment
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