Minerva Mod Episode 1!

Sui

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I completely agree with you on the story Sulk, that's the impression I got as well :) I'm not quite certain Minerva (I'm going to call her a "she") is an AI though, dispite that it seems to be the most likely explanation at first. The main reason is because she shows emotion, and opinions. Do you think we'll have human-like AIs in 2009? She can't be combine either, as she speaks of them as if she knows as much as you do (or slightly more). Also, what possible motives could an AI have? an AI working alone to obtain... what? It doesn't make sense. It's much more probable that she's something even more obscure...
 

Overwatch

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Simply awesome!

The map maker is a genius, it was really athmospheric and challenging all the time.

The lack of the Gravity Gun was a good thing, it made rollermines and turrets much more fun to fight (I lured the mines in water to kill them :D). Also it made the mod more realistic.
 

Sulkdodds

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Also, what possible motives could an AI have? an AI working alone to obtain... what? It doesn't make sense.
A mad AI. Read Neuromancer. Emotions = mad :p
 
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Does anyone have a time they beat the game in, not a speed run, just some average time. Because I want to play this when I get home from teh sk4t3 p4Rk!!!!12
 
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here's my idea of all this

I think the main character may have been an ex-combine soldier or ex-metro that somehow wound up working for the rebels and somehow got caught up with this mysterious minerva entity. As for what minerva is, i'm not sure labeling it an AI would be accurate, if anything it is far more likely that (s)he is the same or a similar type of entity as the g-man. Basically some possibly pan-dimensional nonhuman entity that seems to require an avatar (much like gordon is to the g-man) to get its dirty work done

really liked the mod, i personally went and upped the damage on all the ballistic weapons (both for player and npc), and gave the combine more health. The game became much more challenging since you could not withstand more than 2.5 seconds of close range machinegun fire. It was crazy intense.

Another thing, the mapping was great. Although the game was linear, you realistically featured branching hallways and many different areas even if they were not intregal to the objectives.

Plus the final shootout and the one under the guard tower, christ, those were awesome. I had to use every ounce of skill i had.
 
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I didn't really like it that much. It's pretty much run and gun the entire way through. There aren't any puzzles.

I also turned down the music a bit way through.
 

Overwatch

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Are there supposed to be messages that appear in-game? Cause I played the map 3 times but didn't see any of them.
 

jheaddon

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Simply great, really enjoyed this. Congrats to Adam and the team who pushed this out.
 

Ultimape

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heh, i played rambo, hiding behind rocks, and dodging their fire, ducking, straifing... runnnig around them and in circles with the crowbar. WHenever they went to throw a grendade, I crowbar'd it back at them.

It was very intense, but also very fun.

The only time I died was when I thought you had to jump down near the center of the island, turns out tht big thing has a lot of radiation near it.

The rollermines were hard in groups, eventually I just crowbar'd them into the water and they 'sploded.
 

Sulkdodds

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What difficulty was that though? Hard was hard, but fun using their own nades against them.
 

Anthraxxx

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Wow. i just finished this mod. I must say that it was excellent!
 

Edcrab

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Downloaded it and finished the map in about the same time than it took to get the .zip, which was good ;)

Fantastic episode and I look foward to the next installment!

The whole "secretive benefactor" with the modem-ping moments reminded me strongly of a particular map in the Project: Quantum Leap pack (or possibly its sequel) whereby you're led around by yet another mysterious entity with a penchant for text messages... same author, perhaps? I should really check.

Either way the messages put me in mind of a computer, but some of the terminology seemed pretty damn emotional to be an AI. A computer directing somebody in the HL universe? Where have I heard that before :p

It'd of been nice to have some new content other than the nicely atmospheric additional music (like, say, a voice actor) but that probably wouldn't fit the creator's image of the player's director... i.e., we'd have an insight into their nature, whether it was determining their species/gender or even whether they were a machine...

All in all, twas damn good. Damn good I say!

EDIT: And thanks to Shens for confirming that "Someplace Else", the map I had in mind, was indeed created by the same bloke. Danke!
 

French Ninja

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Oh, yeah I can definally see the influence from Durandal(Marathon). ;)
They both:
*speak latin at times
*refer to everyone as "you humans"
*constantly brings up how you owe him big time
*are insanely sarcastic
I loved it! :)
/longs for Marathon remake in Source :eek:
 

Varsity

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Overwatch said:
Are there supposed to be messages that appear in-game? Cause I played the map 3 times but didn't see any of them.
What language is the game in, and do you have metastasis/scripts/titles.txt?
 

Resvrgam

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Great MOD. :)

The lack of immersion-destroying pauses for loading was a VERY welcomed treat!

My only gripe lies with the messages: lots of spelling/grammar mistakes (Their/They're, and a verb is missing in one of the messages that makes the sentence a bit confusing). It would have been preferable to hear the mysterious messages instead of trying to read them through a firefight. Perhaps future installments could use some VO talent? Just a suggestion.

All in all, great re-write with the HL2 resources --a definite one-sitting romp every HL2 fan should take.

Side note: Aren't Minerva & Athena the same mythological figure?
 

Sulkdodds

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Yes.

Edcrab, reading the website and wikipeding all the mythology references I have come to suspect that 'Athena' is some kind of really ancient AI (or even tethered mind), a weapon that predates the Combine - something similiar to your very own Maintonon, in fact.

"I am Joyeuse, an infinitely cutting blade wielded by an ignorant tyrant, for a cultural renaissance based upon military might." Created as a weapon, perhaps for the Combine? Who knows.

"Times have changed, moved on. I have forgiven my past enemies, but now in repentance I must forgive my colleagues; their actions have brought on more contructed suffering than your world has ever previously known." This also makes me think she/it might be Combine created. If so her past enemies would be humans; her colleagues the Combine empire.
 

Cargo Cult

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Resvrgam said:
My only gripe lies with the messages: lots of spelling/grammar mistakes (Their/They're, and a verb is missing in one of the messages that makes the sentence a bit confusing). It would have been preferable to hear the mysterious messages instead of trying to read them through a firefight. Perhaps future installments could use some VO talent? Just a suggestion.
There's no misuse of 'their/they're', is 'their means of fighting for it leaves much to be desired' the 'fault'? It's correct. :-P As for spelling mistakes - 'accomodation' and 'renouced'. How embarrassing!

Can you point out the grammatical errors? Poor Minerva hasn't got access to a dictionary where she lives, so any help would be greatly appreciated...

Lack of voice-acting: I'd love to have some voice recordings in addition to the text, but unfortunately I'd most likely have to pay Lots Of Cash Money for someone who would do the character justice. So instead, you get to reconstruct it all in your imagination. They say the acting is better in books, anyway!

Oh, and I think someone asked how long I've been mapping - the answer, I'm ashamed to admit, is approaching eight years.

In that time, I've managed three proper map releases (this episodic thing is mainly because my projects expand in size until they're impossible to finish). My first release wasn't for Half-Life, and I challenge you to both find and play it. ;-)

Thanks anyway for all the comments and speculation - and do keep it up. There'll be some extra ... details appearing on the MINERVA site later today, for all you conspiracy theorists!

(Oh, and there are some real clues as to Minerva's origins tucked away in a small corner of Someplace Else. It looks a little drab and mundane, but it's Very Important!)
 
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The lack of a voice for Minerva adds to the immersion of "her" true nature". Maybe only for the final episode.
 

Sulkdodds

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Oh, and there are some real clues as to Minerva's origins tucked away in a small corner of Someplace Else.
Damnit, I just played that.

EDIT: Wait, do you mean in the text messages or the actual map?
 

Mess

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I really wanna know how he did the waves!
 
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basisti

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Damn.. can't get it working.. it freezes up in the options screen with the text 'node graph out of date.. rebuilding' Anyone knows what to do? :(

Edit: ahh, I re-installed it and it worked just fine. Just finished playing it was pretty sweet. :D
 
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Cargo Cult said:
Lack of voice-acting: I'd love to have some voice recordings in addition to the text, but unfortunately I'd most likely have to pay Lots Of Cash Money for someone who would do the character justice. So instead, you get to reconstruct it all in your imagination. They say the acting is better in books, anyway!
Try www.voiceacting.org or www.voiceacting.co.uk

Really amazing work, but please no cut scenes :). Also, when can we expect the next episode?
 

Resvrgam

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The they're/their was used correctly in your writing; I hastily read that message due to being attacked while it was displayed (my bad). However, the message that appears after all of the Overwatch/Manhacks are slain topside near the blue laser drill (or whatever it is) has missing a word. The sentence starts with the word "quite" but isn't followed by a fitting word.

I don't mean to nit-pick. I'm an editor for a newspaper and it's a hard habit to break whenever I read. Congrats on the project again.
 

Edcrab

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I can't believe I'm speculating on the storyline of a user-made map :eek:

But I think the entity (just so I don't look mad if it becomes apparent she/he is not a machine of some sort) is probably pretty ancient- or at least present during the 7 Hour War (website references to guilt over 2 billion deaths).

Somehow responsible for those killings during Earth's invasion/ancient Combine conflict of some sort? As in, defensive failure or direct responsibility, whatever... despite the ridiculous advancement, I keep picturing a defensive earth system that failed us during the 7 Hour War. But in 2009? As said, if Minerva/whatever really is an AI, I can't see how they're a human creation...

And part of me hopes you and me are wrong Sulkdodds, because otherwise Maintonon's been outdone :p
 

stickyboot

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Wow, this level of quality matches valve. Layout, freedom, atmosphere. The only thing it lacks now is the voice acting. The levles truely let Valves wonderfull AI shine. In fact, I found this level to allow for more freedom of the AI than regular Hl2. I'm lookin forward to seeing more.
 

63

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stickyboot said:
Wow, this level of quality matches valve. Layout, freedom, atmosphere. The only thing it lacks now is the voice acting. The levles truely let Valves wonderfull AI shine. In fact, I found this level to allow for more freedom of the AI than regular Hl2. I'm lookin forward to seeing more.
I rather liked the lack of voice acting... the text messages delivered quite well... and plus we already know how bad fan va'ing can be (AT: Deuce :p).

And as the AI, iirc foster spruced it up a bit...
 
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FreeGUM

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I'm having trouble extracting Minerva to my computer and can't seem to figure it out. Anyone have a favorite way they got it to work for them?
 

63

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FreeGUM said:
I'm having trouble extracting Minerva to my computer and can't seem to figure it out. Anyone have a favorite way they got it to work for them?

Just open the zip and drag the Minerva folder to C:\Program Files\valve\steam\steamapps\SourceMods
 
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Azlan

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Although it's only like 20 minutes of actual gameplay in Episode 1, it has some great stuff in it. Most notably, the music rivals that of VALVe and really added to the atmosphere. Great job, can't wait for Episode 2!
 

Ennui

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Azlan said:
Although it's only like 20 minutes of actual gameplay in Episode 1, it has some great stuff in it. Most notably, the music rivals that of VALVe and really added to the atmosphere. Great job, can't wait for Episode 2!
Eh, the music is from the Half-Life 2 soundtrack for the most part.

I loved it, it's great quality and the first thing I've played since HL2 itself that gave me that fuzzy atmospheric feeling.
 

63

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There was only 1 song that wasn't from the ST... I think...

I did find the music a bit annoying though, after the 3rd or 4th song...
 

Cargo Cult

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Resvrgam said:
I don't mean to nit-pick. I'm an editor for a newspaper and it's a hard habit to break whenever I read. Congrats on the project again.
That's okay - I'm a bit of a pedant myself! (Behold the sole member of the Apostrophe Alignment Militia on the Valve wiki...)

I've tweaked the titles.txt and it'll be included in future releases. I've also supplied Minerva with a dictionary and a copy of Fowler's Modern English Usage. She looks angry, but grateful. ;-)

Oh, and the waves someone asked about? Have a look through the mod's folders for something more ... illuminating. The textures were actually already present in HL2, along with a (broken) VMT material. Seems Valve dropped their own waves at some point.

Speculation? Ooooh. But still nobody's noticed that Very Important Thing in Someplace Else yet - it's in plain view in normal gameplay, but nobody's ever commented on its peculiarity...
 

Edcrab

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You teasing git you :p

I might just have to dig out my AMD 600 again (since that's got my WON install complete with the Quantum stuff) just to see what you're on about ;)
 
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FreeGUM

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Thanks six three...I got it to work and I was definitely impressed with the map. It was really an open ended enviroment to play in. Great atmosphere in the prison with the music and the lack of enemies. Really helped build up some tension. I kept waiting for some combine to pop out of nowhere but it never happened. Gave me the same "I'm gonna shit my pants when something comes out" feeling of AvP2's first marine level. good stuff
 

m00b

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Loved the action and level design, hated the lack of story and lack of real puzzles.
 

dogboy73

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Cargo Cult said:
Oh, and I think someone asked how long I've been mapping - the answer, I'm ashamed to admit, is approaching eight years.

In that time, I've managed three proper map releases (this episodic thing is mainly because my projects expand in size until they're impossible to finish).
Is that because it's difficult or have you just taken your time to perfect? I'm asking because I'm up for having a crack at this map making lark myself using Source. But I'd like to know what I'm getting myself in too! I on't want to attempt anything fancy - Just basically use whats there to build some SP content that I think would be cool map to play. Like yourself I often have problems finishing projects because my ideas end up outweighing my means! So keeping it simple is a must.

I think the edpisodic approach is a good idea. It leaves you wanting more. I'm certainly looking forward to the next instalment.

Cheers.
 
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