Xen levels in ‘Black Mesa’ look better than ever, release pushed back again

When it comes to the Black Mesa HD recreation of the original Half-Life, we have some good and some bad news.

The good news is that we have our first look at what the Xen levels will look like. The bad news is that the game’s release has been pushed back again. We now have to wait until December 2017 for its final release, though we’re told that the developers consider this as a “do-or-die” deadline.

The Black Mesa remastering of the 1998 classic, Half-Life, has been in development in one guise or another since 2004 and its eventual release was questioned many times over the years. However, a near-complete version was released in 2012 and a follow-up Steam Early Access edition hit in 2015. Neither was entirely complete though, lacking the final Xen levels from the original Half-Life.

While those levels are now nearing completion and looking far prettier than anything in the original Half-Life, they still aren’t quite ready for prime time.

The wait should be worth it though, as beyond just looking much more contemporary, with advanced lighting and particle effects made possible with modern renditions of the Source Engine, Xen is far more expansive a place to explore in Black Mesa. It’s larger, more detailed and said to be more in line with the rest of the game in terms of “mechanics, cohesion, and expression.”

Whether that will come to pass remains to be seen, but the team, which has expanded a lot over the years of the remake’s development, seems confident that it will do.

Although this latest announcement isn’t something that fans of Black Mesa wanted to hear, alongside the other detail reveals, the team has shown off a new type of lighting they are now adding to the rest of the game. Thanks to a new deferred rendering system, Black Mesa now supports fully dynamic lighting, which will come into play in a few key scenes and settings to make them much more realistic.

The entire game is also being given a new color palette to provide a more cohesive experience to better unify the game’s visual style, and soldiers now hold weapons far more realistically than before. We are assured that the final release will not have any hands clipping through guns.

Look forward to Black Mesa‘s final, complete release this December.

Gaming

‘Final Fantasy XV’ mod remembers the RPG’s canceled DLC and features

A Final Fantasy XV mod pays homage to the content canceled by Square Enix. Episodes Aranea, Luna, and Noctis will no longer happen, while the promised level-building tool and Mod Organizer improvements for the PC version were also shelved.
Movies & TV

The best new movie trailers: ‘Alita: Battle Angel,’ ‘Detective Pikachu,’ and more

Everyone loves a good trailer, but keeping up with what's new isn't easy. That's why we round up the best ones for you. This week, it's new trailers for cyberpunk adventure Alita: Battle Angel, game adaptation Pokémon Detective Pikachu…
Gaming

Your PlayStation 4 game library isn't complete without these games

Looking for the best PS4 games out there? Out of the massive crop of titles available, we selected the best you should buy. No matter what your genre of choice may be, there's something here for you.
Gaming

These are the best Xbox One games available right now

More than four years into its life span, Microsoft's latest console is finally coming into its own. From 'Cuphead' to 'Halo 5,' the best Xbox One games offer something for everyone.
Gaming

‘Blockchain gaming’ startup gets $16 million in Series A funding

A gaming startup, Mythical Games, has raised $16 million in Series A funding to work on their concept of blockchain gaming. The aim is for the startup to develop games for the PC, console, and mobile markets.
Gaming

‘Fortnite’ named Ultimate Game of the Year at the Golden Joystick awards

This year's Golden Joysticks, the gaming awards handed out by GamesRadar, have been announced and Fortnite has been named the Ultimate Game of the Year. It beat out Red Dead Redemption for best game, but Red Dead was named critics' choice.
Emerging Tech

Awesome Tech You Can’t Buy Yet: A.I. selfie drones, ‘invisible’ wireless chargers

Check out our roundup of the best new crowdfunding projects and product announcements that hit the web this week. You may not be able to buy this stuff yet, but it sure is fun to gawk!
Gaming

Want to gift a Steam game so you can play with a friend? Here's how to do it

The holidays may have passed, but it's always a good time to give the gift of gaming (especially when there's a Steam sale)! Here's our quick guide on how to give a Steam game as a gift.
Gaming

‘Final Fantasy XIV: Shadowbringers’ to launch next summer with gunblades, Viera

Square Enix revealed that Final Fantasy XIV: Shadowbringers will be released in summer 2019. The third expansion of the MMORPG will include new story content, dungeons, and raids, in addition to gunblades and the Viera.
Gaming

The Fix PUBG campaign is over: What’s next for ‘PlayerUnknown’s Battlegrounds’?

The PlayerUnknown's Battlegrounds development team declared that the Fix PUBG campaign was over. Here are the results of the three-month campaign, as well as the future plans for the multiplayer Battle Royale shooter.
Deals

Cyber Monday 2018: When it takes place and where to find the best deals

Cyber Monday is still a ways off, but it's never too early to start planning ahead. With so many different deals to choose from during one of the biggest shopping holidays of the year, going in with a little know-how makes all the…
Gaming

Get an Xbox One S or PlayStation 4 for just $200 at GameStop starting Sunday

GameStop is currently running an early Black Friday sale that offers an Xbox One S or a PlayStation 4 slim model for just $200 apiece. Both consoles come with a free game, and other games are also on sale.
Gaming

Original ‘Diablo’ developer calls out Blizzard for disrespecting its employees

In a Twitch rant, an original creator of Diablo has said that Blizzard is more interested in caring for its shareholders and the elite one percent of the company than looking after its workers.
Gaming

These are the coolest games you can play on your Google Chrome browser right now

Not only is Google Chrome a fantastic web browser, it's also a versatile gaming platform that you can access from just about anywhere. Here are a few of our favorite titles for the platform.