Standing the Test of Time


Have you ever played an old game and said to yourself “hey this game is 3, 5, 10 years old and it is still really fun?” Console games I can see doing that as I break out Twisted Metal 2 every once in a blue moon. For PC games, on the other hand, it is pretty rare for me. I usually can’t get past the 800 x 600 graphics on my 21″ widescreen monitor. Not that I need my games to run in the latest Direct X mind you, but the old games are pretty rough to look at.

So what am I rambling on about then? Well apparently the folks at Gamespot ran a contest to see who the greatest video game hero ever is, and as it turns out Gordon Freeman of Half-Life fame was the ultimate champion. I admit I did not participate, but I had my bets on Mega Man, but that might be my age showing. Anyway, Dr. Freeman won with fifty some odd percent of the vote and as a result the folks at Valve decided to sell all Half-Life games at 50% off. Being the bargain shopper that I am I jumped on that deal. I played a couple of levels of the original HL back in college (1998 or ’99) and I thought it pretty cool, but not owning a computer of my own back then (hey I was broke) I never gave it a second thought.

So fast forward to Oct ’09 and here I am with like 4 or 5 “new” HL games on my computer. What’s a guy to do…play some stinking Half-Life, that’s what! So I had some issues getting HL1 to run on my Windows 7 64-bit gaming computer so I started playing HL2 instead…I then started to see blatant references to HL1 that I just didn’t understand, so I bit the bullet and fired up my old graduate school laptop after searching for it under a mound of dust. It whirred to life and the ol’ Dell Inspiron 8200 was put to the test of running an eleven year old game. After wincing at the 800 x 600 resolution graphics I could actually get the game to run with, I have settled in to playing what is one of the best games I have played in years! Did I mention this game was released in 1998?!

So I am a little over halfway through this game and I have to tell you I am thrilled with the experience. I thought I would just find a cheat code and God-Mode my way through it to see what happened, but I am happy to say I have not used one cheat thus far. (flexes cyber muscles). I don’t think they are still offering this deal, but if you have never played Half-Life, please do yourself a favor and play it before there are no computers left that will run the thing…that day will truly be a day for mourning.


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