Mapping Options


Disclaimer: This post will not make much sense to a lot of people, and only hold interest for a few of those visitors who do understand it.

Half-Life 1

Pros

  • All of the models, entities and first-party textures used before should still work for existing maps.
  • Existing maps should ‘just work’

Cons

  • Its old. Even Source is looking dated these days, but consider that goldsrc is over 15 years old.
  • Lots of maps. Limitations on the tech means many, many small maps. The original game had just over 100. The challenge with this is more to do with making the maps ‘feel’ longer by the necessity to add lots of back-and-forth or puzzle-like obstacles. This is still needed in larger maps, but with less frequency.
  • Limited support. Most of the old mapping/modding sites have long-since disappeared, and pretty much everyone and their dog who is making stuff with Valve’s tech are using some variation of the Source engine.

Half-Life 2

Pros

  • Large maps. Lots of opportunity to explore large indoor and outdoor (f.ex EP2) arenas. Increased complexity gives an opportunity to create more stunning environments without crippling the engine.
  • I already started porting some maps over during the last few years. It’s not been a massive amount of work though, so this shouldn’t be construed as a blocker to other options.
  • Wide support for the Source engine.

Cons

  • Everything needs to be converted: some of the aliens do not exist within this engine (but it does have new ones). All of the textures would have to be replaced with HL2 ones.

Half-Life: Source

Pros

  • Everything you want from HL1, but in the Source engine.
  • Everything you want from HL2, but with the content, textures etc from HL1.

Cons

  • Hardly anyone actually owns HL:Source
  • For game-specific support, it’s nearly non-existent (see above).
  • I’ve personally had some issues getting Hammer up and running with this game – which is not to say its impossible, but it needs some time invested to get it working correctly.
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