Feast your eyes on the canceled Half-Life 2 spinoff Ravenholm

Feast your eyes on the canceled Half-Life 2 spinoff Ravenholm

Feast your eyes on the canceled Half-Life 2 spinoff Ravenholm

Half-Life’s history is full of canceled projects that will never see the light of day again, but thanks to Noclip, fans can now see nearly an hour of gameplay from Arkane Studio’s canceled Half-Life 2 spinoff Ravenholm.

It’s a fascinating look at a project that looks fairly close to being finished, but for whatever reason, Valve has finally pulled the plug. In the video, Noclip’s Danny O’Dwyer makes regular appearances to provide context for the gameplay that viewers see. Footage of the cancelled game was obtained as part of Noclip’s 2020 documentary on Arkane’s history, which O’Dwyer says is now being released in full “as part of Noclip’s mission to document and preserve video game history.”

What the video shows looks promising, with players using an in-depth power system to defeat enemies and solve puzzles. Players will eventually get a nail gun that can be used to shoot bolts into the environment and generate electricity to open doors and create traps. O’Dwyer says a brand new soundtrack has been created for the game, some of which appear in the new gameplay footage and are likely the first to be heard by audiences other than Arkane and Valve. There are also new types of enemies, like venom-spitting zombies and super-intelligent mutant monkeys that can crawl through air ducts.

In Ravenholm, players will take on the role of Adrian Shepard from Half-Life: The Forces of Opposition and team up with Half-Life 2’s father, Gregory, in a zombie-filled Fight in an abandoned mental hospital and Gregory’s various hostile science experiments. The project, which began at Junction Point Studios under the leadership of Warren Spector, features a magnetic gun that can be used to magnetize surfaces for combat and puzzle solving. An early prototype would eventually fall into Arkane’s hands and become a project the team called Ravenholm.

Valve hasn’t given an official reason for why the project was never officially released, but in Noclip’s 2020 documentary, Arkane staff simply speculated that it came down to it. According to Arkane, the game will likely take at least a full year of development and the costs associated with it, which could lead Valve to ultimately decide that the project isn’t financially worthwhile to complete.

The latest Half-Life game, VR-only Half-Life: Alyx, was released in 2020, after no new games in the series since 2007’s Half-Life 2: Episode 2. receive a commission from retail offers.

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Wilbert Wood
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