Talk:Globe Trotting Era

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This era started at the release of half life 1 on 19/11/1998 and largely consisted of pre-pitch designs before hl2 was promoted to an "official" valve project in June 1999 when it was presumably pitched to the rest of valve. It consisted of mostly exploratory world building through writing and concept art, with very few assets or maps made specifically due to the scope of being a pitch. The ideas assets that were intended for this era, were later utilised or retooled for later eras as by the time they were completed the context of the game had changed.


The game was thought of as dark rather than action adventure, gradually moved towards the latter by the end of hl2 development and the design philosophy, atleast at this stage, did not include a goal that you could see from every level that you worked towards as the end of the game such as the citadel, instead it was on a smaller scale where each level or set of levels had an easily identifiable goal [1]


development background

Once half life 1 was released, there were immediate thoughts about a sequel with a much larger scope, teleporting the player from alien planet to planet around space defeating the aliens on each. these were just thoughts and didn't represent the state of the game at the release of half life 1, however it served as the starting point to reduce and refine its scope, as those thoughts had problems with continuity between levels.[2]

It is that initial start to half life 2's development that led into this era of design philosophy.

It was with those six words that Gabe Newell launched the development of Half-Life 2 in June 1999. Yes, you read that right--1999, only six months after the original Half-Life shipped.

At first the team considered designing a game where Gordon would teleport to various planets around the galaxy and combat the Xen aliens from the first game. But Laidlaw says the team ultimately rejected that idea because it would be hard to create continuity between levels.

Main information

While much of the content in this era never had assets made, there were writings and concepts in-planning, of which describe 3 main alien races occupying the earth that had presence in the plot:

  • A race of Giant Primitive Tribal type insectoid aliens out in the Middle east that used hollowed out caterpillar subway as transport. (possible influence over dropship design in concept art)
  • A Warrior alien race that utilised Weaponized aliens, the weaponised aliens were homogenised under the name "the hoard". one of their creations is the sack ticks (inspired the headcrab canisters) which had hoard markings on them for task group and delivery vehicle, they were eventually modelled and programmed as an entity in the hyper era.
  • Gman was given his own Spy race with a citadel in a Prague-like city.


Plot

Much of the plot devised at this point in production is unknown, however it is known that the player was to start the game as gordon freeman who had been forced into working as an agent for some alien body (presumably gmans race) and as such you are wearing an unfamiliar more sinister stealth suit with an unfamiliar voice system rather than the hev suit.

One of the introductions mentioned for this era was where you were waking up in a hospital before being broken out by rebels possibly inspired by jacobs ladder.[3][4]

The only other information about the plot and its locations comes from the overlap with the next era the Hyper_Era.

Locations

While this era was scaled down from the initial galaxy spanning thought, it was more focused on different places all around the planet, seemingly thrown together from a list of "cool" places to have the game. Many places in different countries are visited, although they might not have had a story line devised to link them together as of yet:


Characters

I. A. Latham

  • Possible early alyx
  • Based off hl1 assassins and could probably go invisible(next version of alyx mentions invisibility in the small story outlines and the animations for her model include the hl1 assassins animations)

Key dates and info


1999 Early engine beginnings textures were tga only, inbetween wad and vmt, using quake 2 code (in the leak)

  • /utils/vview/gl_model.h
  • /engine/gl_model_private.h

31/5/1999 first hyper mention? (from sound file dates)

before or on 29/6/1999 tf2 boa borealis screenshots

9/07/1999 proffessional hl sdk sent to modders

  • Contains references to new vmf file type

11/11/1999 to 18/11/1999 dynamic dialogue odell, player interruptions(https://valvearchive.com/mail-vault/laidlaw/)

  • Stealth suit Gordon mention? Somehow assures that you are part of the resistance
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