A challenging mod attempting to do some things a little differently with enemy and weapon design.

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A big update on what's in the current release as well as what will be coming after.

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So first big thing I want to get out of the way is that the mod is going to release in at least 2 "episodes", maybe more. The first release will have 2 chapters, including a heavily revised version of what was in the demo, and future releases will probably have the same amount of content. I know I've pushed the release date back a few times when I was a bit unsure about how fast I could work, but this time the date is legit, the first two chapters should definitely come out this December.

This release and its future installments will also have new music composed by a friend of mine. One of those tracks will be posted sometime this month.

I suppose you could say the scope of the mod has increased as I've gotten more competent with certain tools, however to really get the most out of what I want to do I could really use some help. Anyone with solid experience with modelling and animating (especially npcs or weapons) or anyone with the ability to program would be very helpful. I have certain specific requests in mind so don't worry about being dragged into an aimless project. Some details on one of those requests can be found later on in this article.

Now I'd like to get in depth about all the changes in this mod, some of this is old news and some of it isn't, feel free to skip this section if you want to know what's going on with future releases.

Player and System Changes:

  • Health regenerates to the next increment of 20. So if you're at 61 health, you'll go up to 80, but no further than that.
  • The player can now carry medkits to use for later.
  • Battery is no longer needed for sprinting, instead the player moves at a consistence pace like in HL1.
  • Flashlight battery never goes down.
  • Jumping does not propel you forward. Jumping imo should not magically make you go faster than just running!
  • Quicksaving is not allowed in order to let the game be balanced around each section as an actual level.

Weapon Changes! A big focus for me since the demo's release was improving the feel of weapons. I've never been very fond with most of HL2's arsenal as it feels like you don't have much control. The best example of this would be the SMG, which fires within a pretty inaccurate cone regardless of how long or little you've shot it. This creates these moments where you'll be shooting at something with it just kinda waiting for enough bullets to land to kill them. So let's get into those changes!

SMG:

  • Increased starting accuracy that becomes more inaccurate the longer you hold down the trigger.
  • A gradual recoil effect much like the one in Black Mesa.
  • Magazine size reduced to 30.
  • SMG grenade has been removed due to a complete lack of an actual launcher on the model.
  • New model by Illopn.

AR2:

  • Slightly increased accuracy.
  • Greater carrying capacity.
  • New alt fire! The orb no longer bounces around, instead it detonates on impact.

Shotgun:

  • Increased accuracy making it much more viable at mid range.
  • Sound effects taken from L4D2 to replace its rather flat default firing sound.

Pistol:

  • Slightly increased accuracy.
  • New firing sound effect.

Frag Grenade:

  • Increased explosion radius.
  • Decreased time to explode.
  • Changed arc of the throw so it rolls a lot less when it hits the ground, hopefully making it easier to aim with it.

Enemy Changes!

Soldiers:

  • New models to add different variants. One of these variants is a soldier that can spawn manhacks and will continue to do so until killed. To balance this only two manhacks from that soldier will be allowed out at any given time.
  • Increased effectiveness with grenades, including how far they throw them and their willingness to use them when the player is hiding.
  • Increased movement speed.

Small note-A little test video showing a metrocop doing a big jump was posted a while back, and while I do plan on having a jumping enemy in the future, I thought the animation did not fit the model and honestly I think the addition of such an enemy would mess up the pacing at that stage of the mod.

Hunters:

  • Increased flechette speed so the player can no longer easily strafe around all of them when in close range.
  • Increased turn speed when charging, forcing the player to put something between him and the hunter when it charges.
  • Increased flechette explosion radius.
  • The Hunter now jumps as part of its regular navigation.
  • Reduced resistance against guns due to a lack of gravity gun.

Zombies:

  • A running variant of the default model has been added.
  • Melee range slightly increased.

//End of Update List//

When I first started this project I had fairly minimal mapping experience and zero experience with coding, however with a lot of determination I've found that I've been able to achieve all of my major goals with coding and now I really want to add some new stuff, or perhaps you could say old cut stuff! That's right, I'm planning on bringing back enemies from the HL2 beta, specifically the Cremator and Assassin, possibly the bullsquid as well but no promises on that one. I know a lot of mods have tried to bring this content back to life before and ended up never being finished but I like to think that I'm pretty good at keeping my own expectations in check. I hope after you play this upcoming release you'll see that I'm really into this work and that I absolutely will stick to this goal.

On the subject of the Cremator, I already have some of his basic ai working on a new model. The model itself had a totally different skeleton and it was a total nightmare getting it working but lo and behold it basically works, aside from some minor clipping. That all being said I would still love to get some help with a model editor because I really just do not have the time to keep programming, mapping AND trying to learn how to edit a model from scratch all at the same time. Specifically I would like to be able to speed up his walk animation, something that sounds like it would be a simple enough task with a .qc file edit but I've found it impossible to do so far.

As for the Assassin, I've yet to really get into working on her although I do have a pretty decent model that I found free to use. From what I've experienced just playing around with some stuff she's been much easier to work with so I'd probably need more help programming wise than anything animation wise when it comes to her.

I know this has been a really long post so I'm thankful for anyone who stuck with it. I'm really looking forward to getting these first 2 levels out and even more excited to do even more ambitious work in the future!

Comments
TimeCrab
TimeCrab

Man, this project has really expanded! I look forward to playing the first chapter; the gameplay changes that you listed sound like they'd make for a pretty fun and generally more challenging experience.

Good luck with this project man!

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Capt.Host
Capt.Host

Really happy with the work you've done. Good luck ;)

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$$$killer$$$
$$$killer$$$

Looking foward to it!

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Half-Life 2: Episode Two
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