Wednesday, 19 September 2012

Black Mesa Source: Sights and Sounds

So last weekend I played through Black Mesa Source with notable freelance gaming journalist damselgaming who wrote a review of it before I could even blink. As a result I have very little to say about BMS because she has put it very well herself and I would have to be derivitive.

One thing I would add to her comments is this; the sound design of BMS is astounding. New voices, new voice acting, new audio cues and creature sounds make the atmosphere of the game much richer than the original. The soundtrack alone is breathtaking; Blast Pit has a gradually building minimalistic piano accompaniment that makes its rotting concrete and rusted steel vastness haunting and poignant (while you're not being attacked by giant armoured worms) while the grand finale of Questionable Ethics has a musical score which got me so pumped I ended up dying several times because I was playing like a spacemarine (and not a theoretical physicist).

The other thing I have to add is a few HD screenshots of the mod. Some of which reveal some interesting design decisions:
The Xen Tentacle, shortly before killing a scientist

A Gargantua staring me out. A few seconds after this he reached into the corridor and cooked me with his heat rays. Yes that actually happened

Two marines, shortly before explosive neutralisation

The rocket towards the end of On a Rail

Launching the Rocket

The new Black Ops Assassin model. Notice the spring heeled boots  are almost identical to the long fall boots from Portal. Is this Aperture tech being used by marines or did Aperture Science send in their own kill team for Freeman? This little detail is one of the things that makes BMS so fun.

Out with the old, in with the new.

GREAT SCOTT! Every white board in the Questionable Ethics Laser lab is filled with physics and diagrams in the distinct style of all 4 science teams that were working there before the Resonance Cascade. 

All the physics objects in the main laser lab ready for science!

Only the cup survived. Right on mug! There are at least 5 different mug designs in BMS, one of which has the Chuckle Brothers on it. How's that for detail?

The hydro electric dam. Pretty!

These bitches just got scienced.

Lambda Core , in all its gleaming glory

The gateway to Xen before powering up, breathtaking stuff.

As you can see, BMS is quite the labour of love. Play it now.

Stay Crunchy Internet.

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