Warren Spector Discusses Cancelled Half-Life Episode

Discussion in 'News' started by Barnz, Apr 25, 2015.

  1. Barnz

    Barnz Retired Content Creator
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    In a recent interview with Game Informer, game designer Warren Spector has revealed a number of new details regarding partnerships between his company, the now-defunct Junction Point Studios, and Valve Corporation back in the mid-2000’s. Prior to the Junction Point’s acquisition by Disney Interactive Studios in 2007, Valve apparently stepped in and saved the company from going out of business by allowing the team to develop new conceptual designs for Valve over a period of about two years while also conducting contract work for Disney on another project at the same time. This project later evolved into what we now know as Epic Mickey.

    During this time, Warren and the team were largely involved in creating work for a new standalone Half-Life title set to be released on Steam, likely sometime around the release of Episode Two. Following Junction Point’s acquisition by Disney in 2007, all work related to the Half-Life title and their other non-Mickey Mouse projects was scrapped.

    gabe.jpg
    Old Buddies: Warren Spector and Gabe Newell at E3 in 1999.​

    Later in the same interview, Warren explained the Half-Life title was set to stand as an “episode”, that would fill in one of the gaps in the Half-Life universe, describing how the team were looking to try and flesh out a specific part of the series’ fictional universe. Their conceptual work also involved the creation of what Warren dubbed the “Magnet Gun”, a new weapon with a number of reportedly exciting applications, including some which would have complimented the Gravity Gun’s existing toolset quite nicely. The Magnet Gun and its unspecified uses were all shelved when the project was scrapped.

    A lot of this information isn't really "new" as such, but we thought Warren's recent reveal of the "Magnet Gun" was a good enough excuse to make a little round-up here of all the details for yet another of Half-Life's scrapped spin-off episodes.

    About Junction Point Studios
    Junction Point Studios was an independent studio established in November of 2004 by Warren Spector and Art Min, the latter of whom had previously worked at Valve. The studio spent much of their time creating concept ideas and attempting to find funding partners. In December of 2005, the company announced that it was working with Valve on a new video game project using the Source engine to be delivered via Steam. This was later revealed to be a Half-Life 2 episode that went unfinished.
     
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    #1 Barnz, Apr 25, 2015
    Last edited by a moderator: Apr 25, 2015
  2. Aizawa

    Aizawa Party Escort Bot

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    In the background "Gamestar" is a german gaming website/magazine (the most known in Germany). Also Peter Molyneux is on that picture isnt he? (on the right)
     
  3. Omnomnick

    Omnomnick Retired Lead Content Creator
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    The original photograph has a lot of big game industry veterans in it. I'm sure Barnz can name them all for you.
     
  4. Nyuha

    Nyuha Medic

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    Thanks to Mickey we didn't saw the Magnet Gun. :C
     
  5. Omnomnick

    Omnomnick Retired Lead Content Creator
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    I'm pretty sure there's a lot more to it than just Disney acquiring the studio.
     
  6. Barnz

    Barnz Retired Content Creator
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    The photo is from August 1999 issue of GameStar magazine. Here is the original photo, showing (from left to right) John Romero, Warren Spector, Gabe Newell, Peter Molyneux, Louis Castle, and Richard Garriott at E3 1999.
     
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  7. Aizawa

    Aizawa Party Escort Bot

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    OH THATS JOHN ROMERO haha
     
  8. Barnz

    Barnz Retired Content Creator
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    Warren Spector answered our questions in an AMA session on Reddit.

    Sandvich18

    Hello Warren!

    Thank you for doing an AMA. Could you please shine some light on Junction Point Studios' cancelled Half-Life title?

    WarrenSpector

    I'm not sure how badly I'm going to get sued by someone for talking about this, but here goes.

    Junction Point had a project cancelled (we can talk about that, too, if you want). There was no money. Basically, Valve came in like a white knight and offered us some work on a Half-Life episode set in a part of the Half-Life universe that hadn't been explored deeply. In addition, just because my team couldn't just do anything the easy way, we decided to add a new tool to the Half-Life universe - the magnet gun. We came up with some COOL stuff to do with the magnet gun. Valve decided to move in another direction but I still wish they'd do something with the magnet gun. It was fun.

    Sandvich18

    Was the Magnet Gun a variation of the Gravity Gun or something entirely new?

    WarrenSpector

    The magnet gun was entirely different than the gravity gun. The two would have been super complementary.
     
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  9. Vincent Pride

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    I'm pretty sure the magnet gun is a gun that shoots a metallic hook (or multiple small ones) that gets stuck in an object (crate, enemy, wall, etc.). After that you press a button and that object gets gravitated towards you with a huge velocity. If you shoot the hook in the wall then you're gravitated towards it instead (works like grapple). Supercharging probably allows you to switch polarity - i.e. throwing hooked objects away from you.

    I was developing similar concept for my 2D shooter, but then found rather better idea instead.
     
  10. TheWiktor

    TheWiktor Party Escort Bot

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    Sounds like the barnacle gun from Opposing Force.
     
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