A closer ex­am­i­na­tion of marc laid­law’s boot­leg Half-life story

Games TM - - CONTENTS -

Where has Gor­don been?

Lost in other di­men­sions, un­able to re­spond to our calls. Or rather, Marc Laid­law has been busy work­ing on other projects and now, more than 18 months since it was an­nounced he was leav­ing Valve, he’s been able to pen a let­ter from Dr. Freema… we mean Ger­tie Fre­mont.

did they find the bo­re­alis?

In­deed, but not with­out some trou­ble. It turns out that the lo­ca­tion dis­cov­ered in Episode Two was not so much de­fin­i­tive co­or­di­nates for the ship’s place­ment, but its likely re-en­try point af­ter flit­ting in and out of time and space.

What Was the con­nec­tion to Por­tal?

It’s all about trav­el­ling be­tween spa­ces, as it's one of Aper­ture Sci­ence’s great­est in­ter­ests. The Bo­re­alis was equipped with a Boot­strap De­vice that was sup­posed to al­low it to travel in­side a gen­er­ated field from any­where to any­where in­stan­ta­neously. How­ever, when it was ac­ti­vated pre­ma­turely to keep it out of Com­bine hands, it turns out it also trav­els to any place and time as well. The ship is there­fore stretched be­tween its start­ing lo­ca­tion and Arc­tic des­ti­na­tion through time and space.

do they find Ju­dith Moss­man?

Yes, Dr. Moss­man helps Gor­don and Alyx aboard the ship hav­ing pleaded her case as a dou­ble agent work­ing with the Re­sis­tance against the Com­bine. Alyx still blames her for her fa­ther’s death, how­ever.

do they de­stroy the bo­re­alis?

It was a mat­ter of great de­bate whether they should or shouldn’t, but Alyx, de­ter­mined to carry out her fa­ther’s dy­ing wishes, in­sists the ship must be de­stroyed. When Dr. Moss­man threat­ens to shoot them and re­ma­te­ri­alise the ship in the Arc­tic for the Re­sis­tance forces to re­trieve, Alyx shoots her and de­cides with Free­man to use the ship as a mis­sile by crash­ing it into a Com­bine stag­ing area that they keep see­ing as the ship flick­ers in space.

did G-man’s Plan for alyx Get re­vealed?

Yes, hav­ing sug­gested to Gor­don that he had plans for Alyx, he turns up just in time to grab her from the Bo­re­alis be­fore she and Free­man send the ship hurtling into a Com­bine in­va­sion force. Gor­don Free­man is left alone con­tem­plat­ing the fu­til­ity of this plan as the enor­mity of the chal­lenge be­comes clearer through the bridge win­dows.

any sur­prises?

The Breen­grub! It turns out the Com­bine re­tained some por­tion of Breen’s con­scious­ness from be­fore he was killed and trans­planted it into a grub crea­ture, now seem­ingly in com­mand of Com­bine forces in the Arc­tic. How­ever, the Breen­grub is ter­ri­fied of Free­man and ul­ti­mately begs to be killed, end­ing its mis­er­able ex­is­tence. Alyx re­fuses to help and Gor­don’s choice re­mains am­bigu­ous in the text.

how does it end?

Gor­don Free­man is saved from the crash­ing ship by the Vor­ti­gaunts just in time, but has ap­par­ently been re­turned to Earth at a much later date. He speaks of the ter­rain hav­ing changed and peo­ple not recog­nis­ing him any­more, but the Re­sis­tance lives on. He signs off, say­ing he leaves it to us to fin­ish the story as this is his fi­nal cor­re­spon­dence.

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