This is by all means an orange box, a box filled with tasty treats every single person should treat themselves to. The presents, although paid, include: Half-Life 2, Half-Life 2: Episode 1, Half-Life 2: Episode 2, Team Fortress 2 and Portal.
It’s been more than 10+ years and we have still been left without the conclusion or continuation of the great game which is Half-Life. Ever still, we hold hope for the future ahead, while keeping close reach to Epistle 3 for closure-wobbling.
There’s history of the creation of Half-Life 2 which is full of trials and errors. The game was leaked, as it was developed, by a hacker in Germany, who wanted to work for Valve and saw this as his way to get himself noticed by the expanding giant that is now Valve.
The leak of HL2 led to changes of plot and setting, thus, resulted in what we today have: a dark and dystopian world of humanity’s last cling of survival to Earth’s dwindling resources and hospitality.
Earth is being drained from its treasures and what’s left in its wake is desolation, while Xen’s wildlife takes over the oceans and forests. The only native animals capable of surviving the foreign organisms of Xen are birds.
You begin your journey with an introduction with G-man, who lets you out of stasis and mentions that you have a new mission, although he never specifies what.
“Wake up, Mr Freeman, wake up and smell the ashes.” The iconic closure of his words and the entrance to a train ride, just like in Half-Life 1, leads us to this new and degenerating world of post-Black Mesa, where Big Brother is always watching and humanity is controlled under an iron boot.
Half-Life 2: Episode 1
An exact continuation without any time jumps or cuts, which gets you to once again meet G-man, but now he isn’t able to exert his control and powers, since the Vortigaunts have pooled their efforts in removing him from the chess table.
The vortigaunts view you as their savior, because you freed them from the control of Nihilanth, the giant hybrid monster who initiated the invasion of Black Mesa at the Resonance Cascade incident. Freeman for them is in need of help, as they see their past slavery in his current situation.
Freeman is thin on time, since the Citadel is being forcefully sabotaged to explode and ravage city 17. Freeman’s involvement in the evacuation of the city was never intended by G-man and his benefactors, but such is of no matter to the silent protagonist as he and Alyx go through hell to try and find a way out.
Half-Life 2: Episode 2
With a train crash on a bridge, it digs into to the aftermath of the Citadel’s core meltdown and explosion.You have to traverse mountainous terrain and thick forests of the countryside-wild. It’s full of rebel hideouts, most of which have been cleared and abandoned, since the Combine has been seeking to destroy any pocket of leftover resistance.
The goal from Episode 1 still perseveres as you pave your way to White Forest, pursued by further ferocious beasts of the Combine’s war machine.
Without a speckle of doubt, you must play these games, or you’d be missing out on so much awesomeness!
By the way, little rocket man.