Valve lies? The hacker tells the truth? Is it all they got?

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Eldeorn

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Hi there people. As a retired games programmer and a fan of Half-Life, I felt I need to talk about a few things regarding all this about the hacker, the current state of Half-Life 2 and what I believe is true about all this.

I was a professional programmer in sweden for about 6 years, and was lead programmer for 3 PC titles (Clans release by Strategy First, Dragonfire and The Shockman Show) and then senior programmer for another 1.5 titles (yeah the one half didn't get finished :p), so I believe I have a bit of knowledge in the process of developing games and a bit of understanding regarding software companies and procedures.

Anyway, here are the common questions that I want to adress:

a) The hacker has told the truth.
b) Valve has NOT told the truth.
c) The leaked version is all they got?
d) Valve are nothing without the community, so they owe us?

a) The hacker has told the truth.

Ok, lets dig into question A first. The only thing that I personally know that is true so far is that the hacker known as Anon has released a source for Half-Life 2, claiming it to be real, which then was proven to be so. I really want to know what else he has said that was true so far? Mind you, truth is only proven by facts, and only fact I know is that he didn't lie about the source authentity, nothing more than that.

What boggles me is also the opinion that the hacker "must be talking the truth since he have no reason to lie, while Valve do"! Seriously, people lie and cheat all the time out of spite and to ruin for others they don't like. Also, the hacker don't have to face the result of being caught, since he can hide behind his .nfo files. For him there is no harm to either lie or telling the truth.

Now, can someone point out any facts from the hacker that has been proven by your own two eyes?


b) Valve has NOT told the truth.

Now, this is what I really don't understand, perhaps beacuse I simply lack the knowledge, or because it just don't make any sense.

They (Valve) showed a movie to the public, and stated that this is how the game is going to be, with not only scripted sequences, but with a good AI as well. Now, we have this situation where people seems to be focused on the fact that the E3 demo and the leaked version has a scripted sequence where a door gets kicked up even if the unit that should be kicking it is actually dead. This is indeed a pure script without any AI whatsoever (at least when it comes to the door kicking part).

The fact is though, this is the E3 ALPHA DEMO, not the finished product, or even the current state of the game. Now I don't know this for sure, but I can bet you that this is made like this to show how it is SUPPOSED to be, and they only forced the sequence with a script to make sure that it won't bug when they run it.

Anyway, the only thing that I know that weren't true was the September 28th realease date. They did however change that to holiday release in good time before the hacker attack, and any distributor can and usually do change the release date since they find new things to fix or balance.

A while after the hacker attack it's said that the game once again is delayed to April 2004, but this is at this point NOT officially confirmed by either Valve nor Vivendi. Due to this RUMOR, people are beginning to ask if it's a scam by Valve, and that the release was never intended to be this year at all. It's kind of funny that one of the biggest and most skillfull game developers in the world suddenly totally fails to make the game they say they are making, and start making up storys and scams to protect themselves... Come on, REALLY. Not even the smallest and crappiest software companies do things like this, and I bet you that *none* of the bigger ones would even consider doing a thing like this when it would hurt them and their community so badly.

For Valve, it would be devestating to be caught lying or making up things like some think they do. Mostly because the fact that even if people may think so, they don't earn *that* much money compared to any other big company in the world. It's a common assumption that game developers makes money like movie stars... I got news for you, they get crap pay. Gaming industry is one of the toughest industries to get a foot hold in, and it takes *alot* of hard work to keep that position.

So my question is... what exactly are the lies that Valve has told? Can anyone give me officiall quotes or give me details that would prove the lies they have told us?


c) The leaked version is all Valve got?

The hacker stated that the latest source leak is the latest source there is for the game, but how on earth can he prove this unless Valve go public and let everyone actually visit their office and compare the source within their SourceSafe database? All the hacker knows is that what HE got was the only thing HE could find, and nothing more than that. Even if he did get access to Gabe's computer, it's not certain at all that he actaully managed to connect to Valve's encrypted SourceSafe database to download the latest build that they had been working on.

Gabe is not a programmer. He is the boss of Valve, and it makes little sense that he sits on the latest builds every day from the the source of the game when he has absolutely no daily use of it whatsoever.

Why Gabe had the source at all is something I can only speculate in. Perhaps so he could compile and run the demo to show it for visitors... who knows. My own boss never had the source, but he did have the latest demo build of my games on his laptop so that he didnt have to come running after the programmers to show off the game.


d) Valve are nothing without the community, so they owe us?

Yeah, it's true that without the huge community, Valve wouldn't make the big money to make Half-Life 2 and such. However, the community get a neverending fun for a one time cost of $30! Also remember that the HL community would not even exist if it wasn't for Valve in the first place, busting their balls to make the best games there is. And let's not forget the creators of CS and how Valve recognized their work, hired them and let them earn something for their excellent work they did for free before, and making it the biggest online competition game in the world.

They owe the community? Naa. The only thing we do is pay $30 once, while they spend 5 years 8 hours a day with a payment that is nothing over the ordinary (for the programmers that is), working their asses off and then get a thank you like this, with the theft of their work, all the mistrust, false rumors and accusations. It's their job to do their best, and unless we are the ones paying their monthly paycheck, we don't owe them jack shit. I paid $30 and I got years of entertainment for that little money.

Cheers.
 

Dagobert

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The only thing that I personally know that is true so far is that the hacker known as Anon has released a source for Half-Life 2, claiming it to be real, which then was proven to be so.
As well as state he had the beta version and the HL1, CS and TFC version , which he also released. After Valve said that was all he got.
 

ASnogarD

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The only thing I will nitpick on regarding Eldeorn post is that the hacker allegedly use Gabes laptop to get password to enter Valves network, the hacker did not copy it off the laptop. However it does not mean the hacker go the latest build.

Other than that :thumbs:
 

inevident

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I bought a halflife collection set for $50.. but sold it for $5 cuz I thought it sucked
 
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Cander

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Originally posted by Dagobert
As well as state he had the beta version and the HL1, CS and TFC version , which he also released. After Valve said that was all he got.
Maybe its because that is all Valve thought he got.

If you walk into your house and your tv is gone and the police come to fill out a theft report. Then later you realize mo erwas stolen, are you a liar?
 
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quaint

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look what happened to saddam when he lied..he got owned
now valve lied...they didnt learn
 

-AnthraX-

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Originally posted by inevident
I bought a halflife collection set for $50.. but sold it for $5 cuz I thought it sucked

You should become a buisness man...
 
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Eldeorn

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Originally posted by Cander
Maybe its because that is all Valve thought he got.

If you walk into your house and your tv is gone and the police come to fill out a theft report. Then later you realize mo erwas stolen, are you a liar?
Obviously :O Burn them! Burn the witches!
 
F

Fredo

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Good post (I get the impression that post quality is getting up again)

The only question I have is to why their communication to the so beloved community stinks. I mean apart from the sporadic emails froms Gabe we get absolutly no info about the game. All the emails from gabe in the "News from valve thread" are a little bit informative but are not that important to me and I guess a lot of others. What we want to hear is what has been stolen, how far they are in their game process (I don't think it would be too difficult to stick a number to it, say 80% or something), what needs to be done, what not, etc.... (Beware: I'm not asking for info about the story or what weapon is in there and which is not)

I know their e-mail communication is their trademark but really, get some proper website or something.

Everything: IMO (I can be pursuaded to have a different thought unlike many others on the fora)
 

iamironsam

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Great post, very methodical. It's a relief to see a post like that in this forum these days.
 
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pnag

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I'd like to agree, but isn't it a bit of a coincidence that all the hacker got was all we've seen in videos? I smell a rat.

"We don't want to ruin the surprise!" says Gabe.

Bull. What does a few new screenshots tell us? Zip. Japan's game con? Same video. Personally, I reckon this is all they have - people are forgetting that the "beta" claims to be "-4 days til 09 - 30 - 2003".

This whole thing stinks to high heaven of lies, and not just by the hacker, but Valve too. I don't think we'll see Half Life 2 til Sept. 30th 2005, as it seems to me that a little more than 30% of the game content is there, at a crappy estimate. After all, they've still got CZ to milk for at least 6-12 months to make it pay for itself; who would if you could play it with the HL2 engine???
 
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Cander

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Bull. What does a few new screenshots tell us? Zip. Japan's game con? Same video. Personally, I reckon this is all they have - people are forgetting that the "beta" claims to be "-4 days til 09 - 30 - 2003".
Once again, what does the exe have to with what maps, models, and tetures were packaged with the exe? From what everyone has said all the errors in this 'beta' deal with missing and outdated models, maps, and textures.

The 'hacker' claims that what was released was all Valve had, but then he contradicts himself saying he will release more. Never mind the fact that there is no way the 'hacker' knows if he got everything or not. From what I garner from what people say, he got new code, but old pre e3 content.
Logic prevails.
 

Gaemon82

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The hacker is wrong, Valve has more, this version is older than the E3-version, because there are many textures and effects missing that we saw in the videos. And I haven't heard anything of the HDR demo, which Valve does have, but I don't think that was included in the Beta, or was it? Can somebody tell me?
I think the game is almost finished and it will come out in a month or so. If the beta was all Valve had, it would take over a year to complete it, or even more.
 

Dagobert

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Then later you realize mo erwas stolen, are you a liar?
If you publically state that only the TV was gone before checking fully then you are trying to cover things up, or unprofessional.
 
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Cander

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What is there to check? Windows doesnt track files copied off your machine. It doesnt mark files as copied. Do you expect Valve to to phtysically check every file for a last accessed date? And see if mayb e they were acessed at a time no one they know of accessed it? Valve's response of 1/3 is based on what was released. Nothing unprofessional, nor anything to cover up.
 
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Eldeorn

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Originally posted by Cander
What is there to check? Windows doesnt track files copied off your machine. It doesnt mark files as copied. Do you expect Valve to to phtysically check every file for a last accessed date? And see if mayb e they were acessed at a time no one they know of accessed it? Valve's response of 1/3 is based on what was released. Nothing unprofessional, nor anything to cover up.
I have to agree here. It is pretty much impossible for Valve to know exactly what was stolen before it was released by the hacker.
 
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Jaymz

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Originally posted by Eldeorn
I have to agree here. It is pretty much impossible for Valve to know exactly what was stolen before it was released by the hacker.
So why say the source code was the only thing stolen?
 
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Cander

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Because that is all that was released AT THAT TIME. It would be logical to assume, that if this person stole X amount of stuff, he would release X amount of stuff, not X/3 of it for whatever reason.
 

cadaver

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the leaked "beta" has to be old as hell... if five years of work equals this thing , well then I have to laugh. I bet the game is close to gold.
 

pblse

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Like someone said earlier, the maps don't match the E3 presentation, lots of missing textures, so these maps are PRE-E3 which means Valve certainly got more than this.

The first post is missing the most obvious question:

e) "did he get it all"

answer is: obviously not, if he got the whole game he would have released it, why would he bother with this crap if he has the whole game ?
 

Grif

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Excelent read!!! :thumbs: :thumbs:
And i couldnt agree more....
 

silent

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The hacker stated that the latest source leak is the latest source there is for the game, but how on earth can he prove this unless Valve go public and let everyone actually visit their office and compare the source within their SourceSafe database? All the hacker knows is that what HE got was the only thing HE could find, and nothing more than that. Even if he did get access to Gabe's computer, it's not certain at all that he actaully managed to connect to Valve's encrypted SourceSafe database to download the latest build that they had been working on.

Gabe is not a programmer. He is the boss of Valve, and it makes little sense that he sits on the latest builds every day from the the source of the game when he has absolutely no daily use of it whatsoever.

Why Gabe had the source at all is something I can only speculate in. Perhaps so he could compile and run the demo to show it for visitors... who knows. My own boss never had the source, but he did have the latest demo build of my games on his laptop so that he didnt have to come running after the programmers to show off the game.[\quote]

I've been saying this all along. Kinda sucks it takes this guy to get everyone to believe it, but hey, as long as everyone believes it i'm okay.

(yes, a dum post, but a post nonetheless)
 
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Manty

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Valve owe everything to it's customers. We do pay their wages.

Another dumb thread... who cares
 

Gilgamesh

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"working their asses off and then get a thank you like this,"

It's their friggin job.
 

inevident

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they choose to do the job... and they are greedy in the end asking for millions in return.
 

FriScho

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"The fact is though, this is the E3 ALPHA DEMO, not the finished product, or even the current state of the game. Now I don't know this for sure, but I can bet you that this is made like this to show how it is SUPPOSED to be, and they only forced the sequence with a script to make sure that it won't bug when they run it."

Gabe was asked if the E3 VERSION had Scrips and he said: NO, NOTHING WAS SCRIPTED. He lied. That's the point and you can't talk that away. He was refering to the E3 Version, not to the final product.

You want the actual quote? Here it is:

HomeLAN: In the E3 demo we saw an scene where Gordon knocks over a PC monitor and the scientist reacts to it. Was that unscripted and if so can other scenes like that occur in Half-Life 2?

Gabe Newell: That was unscripted. There aren't actually scripts in the Half-Life 1 sense. The high level way of thinking about it is that there are actors, actors are in scenes, actors hit their spots, actors deliver lines, and actors have to improvise. Actors are aware at all times of where you are, where you are looking, and what you are doing. In the MOD SDK we'll include a room where everywhere you look, move, and do something that characters will react and respond to show MOD authors how to use the acting system.
 

pblse

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Of course some things will be scripted, how the h would it work without somekind of scripted sequences ??

We really haven't come to the point where you can build a brain into the game that makes all the decisions, maybe in 50 years we will, until then it's just marketing saying nothing is scripted and AI does it all.

I don't really understand what that has to do with anything actually, just a stupid point to bring up.
 
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Immacolata

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Originally posted by pblse
Of course some things will be scripted, how the h would it work without somekind of scripted sequences ??

We really haven't come to the point where you can build a brain into the game that makes all the decisions, maybe in 50 years we will, until then it's just marketing saying nothing is scripted and AI does it all.

I don't really understand what that has to do with anything actually, just a stupid point to bring up.
True, this is possibly the least interesting of all the bits and juicy pieces out there. I don't really care if its scripted or not, whether the game feels good or not is the point for me.

Besides, opening and entering through doors is probably some of the most interesting stuff that AI coders have to overcome, I'm sure many of them use scripts to get around those problems.
 

silent

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Originally posted by Immacolata
True, this is possibly the least interesting of all the bits and juicy pieces out there. I don't really care if its scripted or not, whether the game feels good or not is the point for me.

Besides, opening and entering through doors is probably some of the most interesting stuff that AI coders have to overcome, I'm sure many of them use scripts to get around those problems.
BINGO
 
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RoyalFool

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Originally posted by FriScho
Gabe was asked if the E3 VERSION had Scrips and he said: NO, NOTHING WAS SCRIPTED. He lied. That's the point and you can't talk that away. He was refering to the E3 Version, not to the final product.
You're wrong, he said nothing was scripted "in the Half-Life 1 sense".

HomeLAN: In the E3 demo we saw an scene where Gordon knocks over a PC monitor and the scientist reacts to it. Was that unscripted and if so can other scenes like that occur in Half-Life 2?

Gabe Newell: That was unscripted. There aren't actually scripts in the Half-Life 1 sense. The high level way of thinking about it is that there are actors, actors are in scenes, actors hit their spots, actors deliver lines, and actors have to improvise. Actors are aware at all times of where you are, where you are looking, and what you are doing. In the MOD SDK we'll include a room where everywhere you look, move, and do something that characters will react and respond to show MOD authors how to use the acting system.
It is unscripted in the sense that you simply bump into the monitor and the game's physics make the monitor fall down. However, it's scripted in the sense that the level designers had to put the monitor there to be bumped and make it possible for the object of that type to be bumped into.

There's a really thin line between 'scripting' and 'omg itts totally unscripted ad alive and doest rely on anythng at al wowww11!1!~oneonnone!1!'.

EDIT: All AI has to be scripted. It's just a question of how extensively it's scripted so as to allow multiple behaviours and make it open-ended. But there's no way you can just write some sort of magical AI that does everything by itself.
 

Maxi

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Also how do we know this is the E3 build? it could be an earlier version where they haven't put the advanced A.I. in yet?
 

perrkele

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And besides, Gabe is talking about the Kleiner's Lab scene in that quote of yours, isn't he? I wonder if his answer would have been a bit different if someone had asked him about the Traptown demo (if the door indeed was scripted and he knew about it)
 
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Empty_One

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Originally posted by RoyalFool
All AI has to be scripted. It's just a question of how extensively it's scripted so as to allow multiple behaviours and make it open-ended. But there's no way you can just write some sort of magical AI that does everything by itself.
Yes, but I think the problem is that is was implied that the only reason the door burst open, was because the guard heard the noise, and burst in. If the guard is dead, there is nobody to open the door. If the door still opens, then it is a totally scripted event, with no enviromental variables taken into consideration. That is way more extensively scripted than we were led to believe.


**Edit** Or, I'm an idiot, and got my scenes mixed up. :D
 
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Zero Signal

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I agree with everything the threadstarter said 100%.

For the AI subject. . .well would it make sense that Valve had a build to test the AI by scripting the sequence first, then seeing if the AI could interpret the same sequence on it's own given all the right variables? And that the leaked version may have been the scripted 'test' version? Just a thought.

Or maybe in the same case, they write the AI for each part so one thing reacts properly to another. The door needs to open one way or another, so maybe they scripted the door to open so they could write the AI for the other parts to get them to react properly.

I don't know this stuff really, but my point is, you shouldn't be questioning ANY of it whatsoever. You don't know what you're playing, when it was made, what it was made for etc. . .and whatever this leaker says should be suspect, I wouldn't believe a single thing he says. And I wouldn't take a single element of the game you guys are playing to be anything remotely close to what the released game will have.
 

silent

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Exactly, People say that one man was killed, well think about it, two men broke the door down. It does make sense that if one man somehow appears, that two men can somehow appear.
 
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