Black Mesa Trailer Teaser

There’s a fan remake of the original Half Life underway, going by the name Black Mesa. The site for the mod is utterly blitzed under the traffic, but here’s the trailer they just put out.

Tell me that doesn’t look pretty sweet, eh?

You may be thinking there was something similar already released. It’s true that the original Half-Life was re-released under the modern Source engine, but aside from a few minor special effects facelifts, the game looks more or less the same, using as it does the same models and textures as the old one.

As you can tell from the trailer, this is a remake from the ground up. The dialog has been re-recorded, clearly. My goodness, the scientists don’t all have the same four heads now! Some of them are women, even!

Look at the attention to detail on the blind tentacle bursting through the test fire room, bending and breaking railings as it goes. That’s the definitive moment of Half Life, recreated beautifully.

The mod is supposed to be out sometime in 2009, and would work for anyone with a regular Source game already installed, like Counter-Strike: Source, Half Life 2 or Team Fortress 2.

Until the site is back up, you might still be able to glean some information out of the forums or this interview at Planet Half-Life.

Unreal Tournament 3 Review(7 out of 10)

After over 3 years of waiting, Epic Games released Unreal Tournament 3(UT3) in late 2007 for the PC and PS3. Never fear 360 players, UT3 has just recently been released for the 360 as well. For this review, I have been playing the PC version of the game. Simply put, Unreal Tournament 3 is a huge upgrade from Unreal Tournament 2004 in every way.

UT3 Box Art(PC)

Graphics: UT3 is using the Unreal Engine 3 for some crisp next generation graphics. The downside being that for PC gamers this may mean a pricey graphic card upgrade.

Gameplay: The gameplay is hands-down fun and intuitive. The gameplay formula hasn’t changed since the last Unreal Tournament game, but there have been some very nice features that have been added for UT3. Transportation has been made easier by the addition of the hover-board and a slew of new vehicles. There is also a new mode, Warfare, in which players capture nodes and trigger events to defeat the opposing team, but a good chunk of the modes from UT2004 have been dropped from UT3.

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Soul Calibur IV: Exclusive Characters

Darth Vader in Soul CaliburMost Soul Calibur fans are already eagerly awaiting the newest installment of the series which is due to release at the end of this month, July 29. For Soul Calibur IV, each console features a unique bonus character from the Star Wars universe. Yoda will be gracing us with his presence on the 360 and Dark Vader storms the PS3. Can’t decide which character you prefer? That may be the point. Continue reading

Looking For Love? Get A 360!

I know, I know–it sounds counterintuitive. Sounds counterintuitive to me too, frankly, but more and more, the pickup line of choice seems to be “What’s your Gamertag”? Or its other-system equivalent, of course.

There’s this couple, recently fans of Tom Clancy’s Rainbow Six: Lockdown. They were playing for some time–they even started out hating each other–and eventually grew to enjoy each other’s company. So much, in fact, that they decided to make the jump from teammates to People Who Actually Knew Each Other and decided to meet. No small task since the gamers were based in Georgia and the Bronx. And after they met, you can tell the rest–they fell in love and had their first child recently.

Now this is enough to make you wonder. With eHarmony rejecting fully one quarter of its applicants and the phrase “gamer” being virtual death in regular conversation and any personals posting, maybe the place to go to get hooked up is sitting right in our living room. It may not work for just anyone, but at least you’ll still have fun while you try, the cover charge is a lot less egregious, and there is no drink minimum.

Or maximum!

And, while you’re giving that a try, you can also take on the 360 trivia on Kwanzoo!

First Person Shooters–I’m Sick Of Them Too!

Can I do something besides open doors and shoot stuff?  No?  Forget it, then.Finally, my disgust with the first person shooter genre, especially as it relates to the Xbox 360, is being echoed in the blogosphere, even on Destructoid as Twisted Imp lays it out, briefly.

So let me amplify–I am sick unto death of first person shooters. I’m tired of crawling around warehouses and through planetary cores, doing nothing but pulling my trigger every time something unpleasant wanders into my frame of vision. I’m tired of collecting progressively larger weapons, and I’m sick of the latest BFG. I’m tired of games that are little more than a collection of quests with all the forward thinking of the end of my barrel.

Oh, sure, there are some notable exceptions–BioShock, for one. Relatively wide open spaces and a convincing storyline give me a reason to blast Big Daddies. Even better, half the weapons seem to be homemade, and that’s reason to pay attention. Also, my personal favorite game, Oblivion, is just a medieval FPS, but packed with story and things to do in wide open spaces make the FPS engine go down a whole lot smoother. If I were doing the swords-and-sorcery thing in the United Aerospace Corporation offices, I’d feel a lot less jolly about it, that’s for sure.