MINERVA: Episodic, Single-Player Half-Life 2

I loved my Weighted Companion Cube -

Yes, the Orange Box has been released, and declared great by the world.

I'm alternating being distraught by the ... unfortunate departure of my poor Weighted Companion Cube, being amused by the megalomanic rantings of GLaDOS, and looking at Episode Two through envious eyes, seeing what I can half-inch for the next MINERVA chapter thingy. Which will be called Out of Time, mainly for less-pretentious-sounding reasons, and partly for alphabetical ordering ones. 'O' coming after 'M', and all that.

Feel free to Orange-Box-spoiler yourself to the maximum with the new Distractions sub-forum! If the signal-to-noise ratio ever threatens to drop to standard forum levels, we will automatically draught in further Horsemen of the Apocalypse to moderate your poor souls. The beatings shall continue until morale improves!

Article Comments (now closed)

macc's gravatar

1. Portal

Posted by macc at 4:47PM, Thursday October 11 2007

Yeah Portal is awesome! I wasn't even really looking forward to the game, so it was a nice surprise.

I bought Orange Box primarily for Ep2, but only after I bought it, I really began to appreciate the whole package.

Ace's gravatar

2. signal-to-noise?

Posted by Ace at 5:30PM, Thursday October 11 2007

I perused some of the older forum stuff, now in the death-bin, and 90% of the conversation was about cheese. What qualifies as signal around here?

krisvek's gravatar

3. Obviously

Posted by krisvek at 7:15PM, Thursday October 11 2007

Cheese, obviously.

I've downloaded the newest MINERVA, but have yet to play it, as I'm in the middle of moving, and my PCs are not yet set up and game-ready (and my DSL isn't on until the 15th).

I will welcome the psychic energies of all those who read this, to help me convince my wife that yes, even after a major purchase (our new home), Orange Box IS a necessary expense.

Nesretep's gravatar

4. Re: signal-to-noise?

Posted by Nesretep at 7:49PM, Thursday October 11 2007

It's signal if the Horsemen say it is. Since they started the cheese discussion thread...I guess it is signal.

There were plenty of semi-serious discussions other than that though.

Procyon's gravatar

5. NO Adam!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

Posted by Procyon at 8:38PM, Thursday October 11 2007

Dont change the name "Chronoclasm" to "Out of Time".... It takes something special from the mod, I don't know what it is...

Why dont you call the chapters with numbers? Like "Minerva Chapter 2: Chronoclasm" and "Minerva Chapter 1: Metastasis"...

Remember that 2 comes after 1... (no offense)

Baffled's gravatar

6. Timely intervention

Posted by Baffled at 9:43PM, Thursday October 11 2007

How about ... MINERVA:Temporalisis?

I don't think it's a real word, but it does seem to be out there:

http://www.fortunecity.com/rivendell/saint/625/temporalisis.txt

Perhaps you can get Mr Locworks to check whether it means anything in any other language?

I *loved* portal, and the ending, and as far as the cube goes...I'm afraid I didn't hesitate ... does that make me a bad person? :-(

Anschluss's gravatar

7. Agreed

Posted by Anschluss at 9:43PM, Thursday October 11 2007

I agree with procyon. What's the need for alphabetical order? Changing from a cool name like "Chronoclasm" to "Out of Time" eliminates some of the crypticness that makes Minerva so special. "OoT" seems more....common.

Seriously, there should be a poll.

DiDo's gravatar

8. The orange box...

Posted by DiDo at 9:45PM, Thursday October 11 2007

I'm enjoying this new release as well... Not as much as some though. Big, big issue with not being able to see anything in portal, which carries on to invisible walls in Episode 2. I promised myself that at the first invisible wall I would stop playing, and 5 minutes in... A whole house! Most of portal is... bearable however. It's really good despite my graphics issues, and I'm almost done!

Speaking of graphics problems, though... Can anyone help? And don't say drivers, that's the first thing I checked. None available for my card... =(

As for the next installment of Minerva, I don't care as much about the name as I do the game. I'm sure I won't be disappointed, though.

Baffled's gravatar

9. Ooooh, wait

Posted by Baffled at 9:48PM, Thursday October 11 2007

MINERVA: Temporalysis

An even less meaningful word but it looks rather good, no?

I'll be quiet now.

Elyscape's gravatar

10. re: DiDO

Posted by Elyscape at 12:54AM, Friday October 12 2007

DiDO, try validating your cache files.
Portal: steam://validate/400
EP2: steam://validate/420

DiDo's gravatar

11. At risk of sounding stupid...

Posted by DiDo at 6:33AM, Friday October 12 2007

Thanks for the help, but what do I do with those? Are they commands? Where do I enter them?

Captain_Planet's gravatar

12. out of time???

Posted by Captain_Planet at 6:40AM, Friday October 12 2007

loved metastasis, played the whole thing nonstop start to finish, and the ending with what seemed hundreds of zombies was pretty f@*%in awesome


on a side note adam, we all can't wait to see waht you're concocting for a sequel, but in gods name dont name it out of time!

one of the greatest things about metastasis was the believeable consistency in the entire map, the sound, and even the name. it all fits together smoothly to make an even better gaming experience. imo, the name "out of time" isnt consistent with this image at all. chronoclasm sounds much more minerva than out of time, and besides chronoclasm just sounds great, out of time just sounds ordinary.

tahts just my two cents

Elyscape's gravatar

13. Ah, sorry for being confusing.

Posted by Elyscape at 9:17AM, Friday October 12 2007

I was hoping they'd be autolinked. Since they weren't, you've two options:
1) copy and paste them into your browser bar
2) right click on the programs in Steam, click properties, click Local Files, and then click Verify blahblahblah
THE CHOICE IS YOURS

locworks's gravatar

14. A poll?

Posted by locworks at 1:20PM, Friday October 12 2007

@Procyon, Anschluss, Captain_Planet
I think you've made your opinion of the title heard quite effectively. Let's move on, shall we?

Please also bear in mind the suggested 30 day moratorium on asking Adam about Out of Time. It's a matter of respect to let the creator breathe for a while, before enquiring about what's in the works and suggesting polls about the title.

Enjoy M:M3, Episode 2, Portal, TF2 and all the goodness out there.

DiDo's gravatar

15. Still got problems =(

Posted by DiDo at 9:04PM, Friday October 12 2007

I'd already tried the second one...
I knew that the first would do the same thing but I really wanted a solution. Needless to say, nothing different.

MedO's gravatar

16. Portal was great

Posted by MedO at 3:19PM, Saturday October 13 2007

...but no spoilers from me here. I'd love to get some good cake now, though ;).
I also started playing Episode 2 and I'm happy to say that I like it a LOT more than Ep1 so far. Team Fortress 2 I didn't even try yet. So, in my opinion, the Orange Box was worth the money. Also, let's not forget, I needed Ep1 to play Minerva... so yeah, it was definitely worth it ;)

The Unsung Hero's gravatar

17. Temporalysis

Posted by The Unsung Hero at 7:28PM, Saturday October 13 2007

The word has meaning! It's a portmanteau of Temporal, "to do with time" and Lysis "to break".

So it means literally "To break time", or something along those lines.

In other news, i need a copy of episode 1, or i'm never going to be able to play the latest metastasis.....

M_Gargantua's gravatar

18. :wcc: emote

Posted by M_Gargantua at 8:22PM, Saturday October 13 2007

Adam, am I right in saying that both the portal and ep2 teams put easter egg's in the words and worlds pointing to a subtle Minerva appreciation of both? Because while I'm not done with ep2 I thought I noticed a few things. And I definatly caught something in portal, even if it was just a throwback meta kinda thing.

Also now that they are out can you spill your guts about your trip to valve, the sights, the feedback, and what they told you would be nice for Minerva?

Sirc's gravatar

19. Well Another Interpretation Though

Posted by Sirc at 8:52PM, Saturday October 13 2007

But, there is another interpretation of Temporalysis. One could say it means, "to do with time to break." Reasoned this way just for literal people I suppose. Even though Temporalysis is an interesting word, it would leave even less words possible for MINERVA 3. Do you think instead of just calling for Chronoclasm we should try to find a better set starting with an 'O' word instead?

(Just a thought...)

Cargo Cult's gravatar

20. Naming

Posted by Cargo Cult at 9:36PM, Saturday October 13 2007

Given that you don't know the plot, stop finding me mangled Greek-Latin replacements for my accidentally-Wyndham-sourced original. Time travel would be so ... obvious...

Another thing: I <3 MY CUBE

Yes, my dear acolytes, you're now able to use emoticons! Well, one emoticon in particular. But it expresses all that is important in life - love for a Weighted Companion Cube!

Since I've forgotten to provide a mechanism to escape it, it's colon-w-c-c-colon, as inadvertently suggested by M_Gargantua.

I <3 MY CUBE

Have fun!

fuzz's gravatar

21. -wcc-

Posted by fuzz at 11:34PM, Saturday October 13 2007

-wcc-


(does it work in titles as well?)

I still have yet to start Ep2, but I have feeling a plushie weighted companion cube will be on my christmas list.


to the bemusement of all around me

fuzz's gravatar

22. :wcc:

Posted by fuzz at 11:35PM, Saturday October 13 2007

I <3 MY CUBE
(damnit colon not dash!)

Pyro-Dude's gravatar

23. testing... 12E

Posted by Pyro-Dude at 12:36AM, Sunday October 14 2007

I <3 MY CUBE
I <3 MY CUBE
I <3 MY CUBE
I <3 MY CUBE
I <3 MY CUBEI <3 MY CUBE

MedO's gravatar

24. Waaah!

Posted by MedO at 1:15AM, Sunday October 14 2007

Too many companion cubes!
Which one of those is my friend?!?
I'll never trust these other ones not to stab me!

M_Gargantua's gravatar

25. Averting the question

Posted by M_Gargantua at 4:46AM, Sunday October 14 2007

Kansas city shuffle material right there...

Terrapin's gravatar

26. Sweet Revenge

Posted by Terrapin at 5:01AM, Sunday October 14 2007

Without giving too much away, did anyone get a particular satisfaction with how we did away with GLaDOS? It felt quite satisfying to see piece after piece of that machine meet such an ironic fate.

I <3 MY CUBE

By the way, has anyone taken a close look at some of the spaces where people were trapped behind the walls? One such place has numerous pictures of people, including a swimsuit model, with pictures of a companion cube taped over their faces. Creepy, yes?

wargamerROB's gravatar

27. Protocol

Posted by wargamerROB at 5:09AM, Sunday October 14 2007

Please proceed as the effects of prolonged exposure to the button are not part of this test.

I <3 MY CUBE

Elyscape's gravatar

28. re: Terrapin

Posted by Elyscape at 6:03AM, Sunday October 14 2007

Play through the game again with commentary enabled. They talk about the "ironic fate".

cypher543's gravatar

29. re: re: Terrapin

Posted by cypher543 at 7:08AM, Sunday October 14 2007

Which commentary node is that? I must have missed it.

Pyro-Dude's gravatar

30. Wah!

Posted by Pyro-Dude at 12:33PM, Sunday October 14 2007

AAAAAAH! Intarnats asplosions!

Baffled's gravatar

31. Wah! Seconded

Posted by Baffled at 3:59PM, Sunday October 14 2007

Flippin' eck, the worst outbreak yet.

Sorry for the unwelcome and unappreciated naming suggestions, won't happen again.

In apology I bring thee a link to Portal in miniature:

http://portal.wecreatestuff.com/

(Wait til the counter reaches 100 ... obviously)

I <3 MY CUBE

Elyscape's gravatar

32. re: re: re: Terrapin

Posted by Elyscape at 4:55PM, Sunday October 14 2007

I seem to recall it being near the place where the Weighted Companion Cube meets his unfortunate end.

M_Gargantua's gravatar

33. Commentary

Posted by M_Gargantua at 8:51PM, Sunday October 14 2007

I think that might have been node 2/3, which I was never able to find despite noclipping around.

Nick's gravatar

34. I want my wcc

Posted by Nick at 9:44PM, Sunday October 14 2007

I <3 MY CUBE

Only 4 weeks till I can get in though, finals and all :(

Nick's gravatar

35. re: Wah! Seconded

Posted by Nick at 9:52PM, Sunday October 14 2007

Flash portal is awesome...

Thanks Baffled!

Spaztick's gravatar

36. I called it!

Posted by Spaztick at 7:43AM, Monday October 15 2007

*Spoilers below*


Anyone else notice how Minerva is a lot like GLaDOS (or vice versa), once the morality core is destroyed? :O It seems like coincidence, but it would be interesting if GLaDOS was an extension of Minerva.

One of these days when we're all enslaved or killed because of an inter dimensional A.I. named Minerva or GLaDOS I just want everyone here to know that I @#$%ing called it.

Just a man hiding underneath's gravatar

37. Revisiting old ploys?

Posted by Just a man hiding underneath at 7:47AM, Monday October 15 2007

Anyone happen to find the login hidden in one of the ratmen's dens?
Login: tjohnson
password: tier3

Perhaps this applys to the ploy that was www.apeturescience.com?

Someone look into this for me... For I grow too weak to do it myself.

xbskid's gravatar

38. Re: Revisiting old ploys?

Posted by xbskid at 1:55PM, Monday October 15 2007

Actually it was cjohnson, and all that login has over the normal one is a notes program that briefly explains what Apeture Science did before the Portal technology.

Elyscape's gravatar

39. Aperture Science

Posted by Elyscape at 2:37PM, Monday October 15 2007

Specifically, they did things involving shower curtains.

tartley's gravatar

40. clicking 'buy orange box' starts minerva instead...?

Posted by tartley at 9:36PM, Monday October 15 2007

I want to buy the orange box. So I start Steam, and when I click the Orange Box 'Purchase' button, I get the 'Preparing to launch Minerva: Metastasis' dialog, just as though I'd launched Minerva. Sure enough, Minerva then starts up.

I can't buy the orange box!

Has anyone else got this problem? Any clues?

Thanks all,

Tartley

Sortie's gravatar

41. Isn't Minerva a genetic lifeform?

Posted by Sortie at 12:33PM, Tuesday October 16 2007

"I also had a long chat with Ken Birdwell and Kelly Bailey on world design, and how it influences MINERVA - and all I can say is that I now know why Valve is so successful. There's some serious intellectual talent behind the team, and it seems to have infected my little project with some minor, pivotal plot points. Minerva now has a true home, and MINERVA has a true story arc. There is now weight behind my little project." - posted by Cargo Cult on Monday May 8 2006

That was a year after the Portal project was started ( 2005 according to many sources ), which means that Valve might've talked about Portal with Adam, mind that this was only 4-5 months before the initial trailer.

Let's have a few quotes, shall we.

"So, strapped to the underside of a stolen Combine helicopter, you're part of my latest scientific investigation."
"I'm doing Science and I'm still alive."

"Dulce et decorum est pro terra mori?"
"Por favor bordón de fallar Muchos gracias de fallar gracias"

Well. It's hard finding some good quotes to compare, really, it's just the meanings behind the words that makes it worth comparing.

Procyon's gravatar

42. "Por favor bordón de fallar Muchos gracias de fallar gracias"

Posted by Procyon at 11:54PM, Tuesday October 16 2007

What is supposed to mean that?

That is a meaningless phrase... trust me, Spanish is my mother language

Spaztick's gravatar

43. Well...

Posted by Spaztick at 2:22AM, Wednesday October 17 2007

I think he was just showing the similarities between Minerva and GLaDOS, although originally when I heard Portal announced and that Adam had met with some Valve staff I thought Minerva was human that had received some type of inter dimensional power. Now though, it's much more plausable that Minerva is GLaDOS. :O

Mr. Bunny's gravatar

44. Name

Posted by Mr. Bunny at 2:23AM, Wednesday October 17 2007

I'd like to add my voice to those protesting Out of Time as the name for the next installment of MINERVA. Chronoclasm sounds much better, and it is not worth it to sacrifice it just to put the next installment lower down alphabetically. You've said that it's more than that, though, so if you have a better (read: actual) reason then by all means go ahead...

Captain_Planet's gravatar

45. RE:

Posted by Captain_Planet at 5:01AM, Wednesday October 17 2007

Mr. Bunny while I agree with you about the name, let's give Adam the 30 days he greatly deserves before we start commenting on his next work. I'm sure there will be plenty of time for it during the development of the next MINERVA.


On the topic of Portal, I tried for 30 minutes to save my poor companion cube :(

Luckily it will always live on in emote form!
I <3 MY CUBE

White Raven's gravatar

46. who cares..

Posted by White Raven at 6:43AM, Wednesday October 17 2007

Who cares what the name is or what alphabetical order it comes in? MINERVA has always been about gameplay and quality... not naming things.

Plus, did anyone nockip to the otherworld through the portal? The truss that sticks out of the sand resembles the architecture behind most of 'Someplace Else'? Not to mention that our elusive sender also mentions that he knows that place...

Sortie's gravatar

47. Do I care? Do I?

Posted by Sortie at 12:13PM, Wednesday October 17 2007

D'oh, of course I've been to the far side, actually it's not on the other side, it's actually beneath the other side.

What I really disliked was the low quality of the rendertarget used as portal, after decades of game development and hardware increases, we still have to use 256px*256px*32bit rendertargets as modders. Oh yes, there's a magic constant somethere, and I found it. Too bad every screen has to be rescaled to use it, that's what happened to GMod.

Columbus007's gravatar

48. GooseGoose's Commentaries on HL2, HL2:E1

Posted by Columbus007 at 4:28PM, Wednesday October 17 2007

Many of you have probably watched GooseGoose / Mark Gillespie's (www.goosegoose.com/home.html) awesome 47 minute commentary of Episode 1. I was delighted to discover that he's recently done a 2 hour commentary spanning all of Half-life 2, available on Google Video in its entirety.

Basically, he revisits the best parts of the Half-life 2 story line, commenting on plot, characterization and the general art of the whole thing.

His commentaries speak more to the heart of the game than Valve's own, I think, and are much more entertaining.


Half-life 2 Commentary:
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=894488339656427727

Half-life 2: Episode One Commentary:
http://video.google.com/videoplay?docid=-7791992304107970746

Cargo Cult's gravatar

49. Zero Punctuation ... does the Orange Box

Posted by Cargo Cult at 7:45PM, Wednesday October 17 2007

http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/editorials/zeropunctuation/2541-Zero-Punctuation-The-Orange-Box

Portal: "the most fun you'll have with your PC until they invent a force-feedback codpiece."

Sortie's gravatar

50. Re: Zero Punctuation ... does the Orange Box

Posted by Sortie at 9:36PM, Wednesday October 17 2007

How clever, your clever title with Re: being used as a clever prolouge.

Anyways, well, that was amusing, amusingly fast infact. Also I agree, where did Barney Calhoun go? I fell like there's a lonely Valve employee somewhere thinking out loud: "Oh, now I know what we forgot. xD"

Ace's gravatar

51. Portal

Posted by Ace at 9:39PM, Wednesday October 17 2007

I totally agree on Portal, the most I've enjoyed a video game in ages. (even without the codpiece.)

SenatorPalpatine's gravatar

52. Portal=

Posted by SenatorPalpatine at 3:36AM, Thursday October 18 2007

the best. A little too easy in terms of difficulty, but the advanced/challenge maps solved that. I'm looking forward to custom maps.


I'll wait a 30 day period to critique the name Chronoclasm. It's a good idea, Adam deserves it. And we'll all have plenty of time to complain while we wait for the next installment of Minerva after that time. But remember, Adam works in Valve time. We should wait 60 days.

Elyscape's gravatar

53. Speaking of things missing...

Posted by Elyscape at 7:52AM, Thursday October 18 2007

I've been playing through Half-Life 2 recently and, I must say, the one element I miss most from HL2 is the pheropods. WHY MUST YOU TAKE MY ANTLIONS AWAY FROM MEEEE

Sortie's gravatar

54. The advChambers

Posted by Sortie at 12:24PM, Thursday October 18 2007

The advanced chambers was far too easy, while the challages was far more entertaining, esspecially the Least Portals requires some heavy rethinking, and now I know what the developers meant with multiple solutions.

kast's gravatar

55. RE: The advChambers

Posted by kast at 1:41PM, Thursday October 18 2007

I haven't attempted any of the Least Steps or Fastest Time challanges - I much prefer to sit back and work out a puzzle in my own time.

Anyone else find that one or more of the challenge types aren't to their liking?

macc's gravatar

56. Yay! Portal gun in HL2!

Posted by macc at 1:58PM, Thursday October 18 2007

http://www.primotechnology.com/2007/10/17/half-life-2-portal/

Cargo Cult's gravatar

57. Accidental modding...

Posted by Cargo Cult at 4:26PM, Thursday October 18 2007

http://www.hylobatidae.org/misc/mossman.jpg

locworks's gravatar

58. accidents happen

Posted by locworks at 5:07PM, Thursday October 18 2007

Why, could that be Judith Mossman, the competent theoretical physicist with a surprising aptitude for firearms and infiltration?

MedO's gravatar

59. About GLaDOS <> Minerva

Posted by MedO at 5:14PM, Thursday October 18 2007

...especially to Sortie, I don't think Minerva and GLaDOS are the same person / entity.

For instance, Minerva never once mentioned cake. I mean, GLaDOS would have coaxed you into that hole by saying there's a party with all your friends at the bottom, and threatened to kill you if you don't go ;-)

Baffled's gravatar

60. Forbidden Fruit ...

Posted by Baffled at 8:08PM, Thursday October 18 2007

http://www.hylobatidae.org/misc/

@Kast: I agree that the portal challenges are much more interesting than the speed-runs and least-steps, but they can prompt people to find new and devious ways of completing the maps.

**SPOILERS IN PAGE LINKED TO BELOW**

Check out the second Portal video on the page below, for a devious but inspired, little door jamming manoeuvre:

http://www.shacknews.com/featuredarticle.x?id=616

Sortie's gravatar

61. if (!(GLaDOS <> Minerva)) {

Posted by Sortie at 11:09PM, Thursday October 18 2007

I think Minerva went to a state beyond saying cake all the time, now she's in her Greek phase.

"You've survived this far, so I may as well introduce myself.

I am your Baker, you are my Cake, and our Spoon for
today is this island; our aim is to infiltrate, reveal, destroy.

Got that?"

locworks's gravatar

62. Or...

Posted by locworks at 1:02PM, Friday October 19 2007

I am your Baker, you are my Spoon, and our Cake for today is this island; our aim is to decorate, congeal, destroy.

Sortie's gravatar

63. Nope, impossible ( Or... )

Posted by Sortie at 1:41PM, Friday October 19 2007

A spoon can't have a baker. Heh, changed.

I am the Baker, you are my Spoon, and our Cake for today is this island; our aim is to decorate, congeal, eat.

Nesretep's gravatar

64. Oh, boy...

Posted by Nesretep at 2:24PM, Friday October 19 2007

You guys are having way to much fun with that one... :)

kast's gravatar

65. RPS Interview

Posted by kast at 6:05PM, Friday October 19 2007

Rock Paper Scissors has published an interview with Adam by Alec Meer. Follow the link below for tasty treats:

http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/?p=456#more-456

Sortie's gravatar

66. Re: RPS Interview

Posted by Sortie at 6:23PM, Friday October 19 2007

Indeed they have, amusing interview indeed, and everything Adam said about project management is so true.
While other just as important tips could be, plan the whole mod before beginning work. Seriously, if you have a frame and constraints to the game it's far easier to create the game, because then you don't just add all the random features/maps you want to doing the development.

The main reason my project is still alive, is because I am recreating a real city, and with real-life locations, you're pretty limited while having all the freedom you need, which really helps you get something done.

Ace's gravatar

67. missing avatar?

Posted by Ace at 6:29PM, Friday October 19 2007

Thanks for the link kast, yes there are some tasty treats in there.

For the moment though, I wonder where Adam's (gr)avatar went? According to Freakoftheuniverse in the forum's that symbol is from Marathon, indicating an open door, where the red one from the steam group means locked door. I don't remember seeing anyone point that out before, so I thought it deserved saying again.
(there are apparently Marathon symbols all over Someplace Else. Probably just an homage or something, but perhaps anyone who has actually played Marathon and Someplace Else can see some other reason?)

Sortie's gravatar

68. Delayed Feedback

Posted by Sortie at 7:15PM, Friday October 19 2007

Waiting for feedback from my testers, you know who you are, don't you. ;-)

fuzz's gravatar

69. Damnit

Posted by fuzz at 7:20PM, Friday October 19 2007

There I was, bored at work, and when do they post an interview? After I get given loads to do :(

Mind you, RPS has swiftly shot to near the top of my daily reading list :)

Ace's gravatar

70. sorry for this..

Posted by Ace at 7:26PM, Friday October 19 2007

..but I've just seen this so many times here, it's dammit everybody, not damnit.

kast's gravatar

71. Overactive imaginations

Posted by kast at 7:49PM, Friday October 19 2007

"RPS: Presumably you’ve been bombarded with fan theories as to who or what Minerva really is. Do people tend to be close to the mark, or is almost everyone way off the truth?
AF: I’ve seen random, badly-spelled forum postings which have pretty much nailed who she is - but then you get the massive over-analysis which seems to assume a huge knowledge of Greek and Roman mythology. Far beyond the brief smatterings I’ve acquired from Wikipedia…

Her messages in the last instalment do say who, and what, she is. Except fans have located apparent ambiguities in those exact statements, and seem to reckon I’m trying to say the complete opposite. Help!"


Hear that, people? Can we quit with the over-thinking everything? :P

Baffled's gravatar

72. If you haven't overthought ...

Posted by Baffled at 8:29PM, Friday October 19 2007

... then you haven't really thought at all.

That's my dictum, dammit ( that's for you Ace ;-) ).

Now what overwrought, and gratuitously convoluted, theories can we come up with in respose to this little morsel:

" ... the number three is important in MINERVA, for rather secretive reasons ... " ?

Ace's gravatar

73. Re: Overactive imaginations

Posted by Ace at 8:42PM, Friday October 19 2007

Kast, that wouldn't be directed at me would it?

Adam obviously invites theorizing by the very nature of his exposition, which is what the interviewer was alluding to. (I could quote innumerable lines from gameplay, the Minerva front page or archives, but hopefully that's not necessary?) It's sort of like a puzzle, something we know he likes giving to us. He's even said in the past that he likes reading people's theories, recently that "it's really helped cheer me up regarding MINERVA." But, of course, as he's indicating in your quote, sometimes we go overboard. And, sometimes even when he's trying to be clear not everyone gets it. (We're not used to clarity, we don't get it either!) I do believe however that there are things there that we can discover with some observation. The mountains of hints and suggestiveness must go somewhere. Obviously there's a whole sub-forum for just that purpose, which, of course, if you're not interested in, you can just ignore. I for one like puzzles and riddles, and it's hard for me to sit right with dangling, misunderstood clues out there.

[It would be nice though if Adam thinks we're off on something particular, he'd say so here before in a published interview.]

Ace's gravatar

74. ... the number three is important in MINERVA, for rather secretive reasons ...

Posted by Ace at 8:59PM, Friday October 19 2007

(oh for that forum-like edit function)

Heh, good call there Baffled, Adam's inviting more theorizing in the same interview!

Moholinth's gravatar

75. The number three

Posted by Moholinth at 11:03PM, Friday October 19 2007

Maybe Adam enjoyed the number 7 in the marathon series and then wanted his own special number.

MedO's gravatar

76. So...

Posted by MedO at 11:34PM, Friday October 19 2007

Unless that line by Adam is another well-placed bit of information to send us speeding in the completely wrong direction (and everybody in a different one, mind you), I think we can pretty much exclude the Minerva = GLaDOS thingie. There was nothing at all in third part of Metastasis (AFAIR) that indicated to me Minerva was an AI. Quite the opposite in fact.

kast's gravatar

77. @Ace

Posted by kast at 12:24AM, Saturday October 20 2007

Note the :P in my comment.

I wasn't talking to anyone in particular. Just jokingly making a plea to save my aching head. It's my own fault for compulsively reading everyone's theories (dare I say treatises?) on Minerva and MINERVA in general.

I suppose what I was trying to say is we should all remember Occam's Razor and not get carried away.

So, don't mind me. Theorise and think away!

Pyro-Dude's gravatar

78. Hums

Posted by Pyro-Dude at 12:38AM, Saturday October 20 2007

Given Occam's Razor and Minerva's 'human' comments, I think we may as well she is. or was at some point human(esque)

Ace's gravatar

79. Re: @Ace

Posted by Ace at 12:50AM, Saturday October 20 2007

No problemo, I think I've just made a massive discovery of a secret hidden message in Metastasis that should finally put a stop to all our theorizing. When Adam said that a message from the last installment said exactly who and what she was, he wasn't kidding, it just had to be found...

(and it seems the British spellings were a ruse after all)

http://i218.photobucket.com/albums/cc302/trp92003/metastasis_30013.jpg

kast's gravatar

80. OMG

Posted by kast at 1:16AM, Saturday October 20 2007

0.0

Bloody hell...

Pyro-Dude's gravatar

81. HOLY NURPLE!

Posted by Pyro-Dude at 1:25AM, Saturday October 20 2007

WHOA HO HO! Seriously good find. I think I prefer Minerva to Hillary though...

Baffled's gravatar

82. What?!! Eh?!! What?!!

Posted by Baffled at 1:37AM, Saturday October 20 2007

I *knew* that woman was trouble!

Elyscape's gravatar

83. OH GOD NO

Posted by Elyscape at 2:14AM, Saturday October 20 2007

ANYTHING BUT THAT

Incidentally, there's a Facebook group called "Hillary Clinton: Stop Running for President and Make Me a Sandwich". It's hilarious.

kast's gravatar

84. oooh!

Posted by kast at 2:29AM, Saturday October 20 2007

Wait, I just got it. *Blushes madly*

I feel such an idiot. Didn't catch the theme of the names.

Ace's gravatar

85. re: oooh!

Posted by Ace at 2:45AM, Saturday October 20 2007

Heh, I was hoping the joke would be comprehensible to an international audience. Us Americans see enough of Hillary these days that I probably didn't even need to mention Bill and Chelsea.

xbskid's gravatar

86. Shameless Plug on Steam

Posted by xbskid at 4:01AM, Saturday October 20 2007

It seems Valve has shamelessly plugged Metastasis in their weekly Friday Update News.

Sortie's gravatar

87. Random Topics ( Valve, Hillary )

Posted by Sortie at 12:48PM, Saturday October 20 2007

You're right, just saw Valves link to the shameless Dev Wiki page, which really doesn't say as much about the game as this page, and isn't nearly as interesting. But it does save bandwitdh, just wish the dev wiki page was better. :P

As for that screenshot, I doubt it's thruthness, I already poked the Titles.txt and the correct text for 2009-10-15.18:35:18 is:
"That's odd.

No more loathsome headcrab manufacturing - this section appears
defiantly non-biological. And significantly more sinister.

The RF emissions and particle backscatter detected by your suit are
now near-identical to those found in the interior of one of our dear
benefactors' Citadels. Except with crucial, subtle ... differences.

I suggest you take care, and keep observing."

Which really isn't what's written on that screenshot, I also fail to see where it is inside the game, and I think it's false, as I searched the whole folder after the characters Hillary.

As for if, it was true, as people already discussed, the names once again resemble the clinton family ( A quick google ). That sure hints away that it's another fictional metaphore.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Chelsea_Clinton

So, Ace. Care to spoil the nonexisting location of such a message, or was it hardcoded into a foolish BSP file?

Boff's gravatar

88. import minerva maps into portal and THANKS for finishing minerva

Posted by Boff at 1:07PM, Saturday October 20 2007

i saw this.
http://www.primotechnology.com/2007/10/17/half-life-2-portal/
and thought i'd give it a go.

just tried it with minerva since it's map folder is already open, and it works
okay the sky textures and crap where knackered as i only copied the "maps" and nothing else

portals and "moving AI" even the Civil Protection don't add for "amazing gameplay"

you got to point the portal gun at the bad guys to get the darn portal in the right position, and then you got to sneak out of there and establish a second portal in a comfort area, which underfire is not easy, swapping weapons and all.

The only "true joy" is the fact (like with minerva) is that it's a go anyway and do anything.

The portal gun shoots through combine energy fields and chain fences, so one can just portal through the fence on the opening map and through the combine field in the little down to gain access to the first few interior levels.

Sadly the only material one can use the portal is is the buildings and concrete walls, be sodding carefull around slopes, entry and exit's obviously aren't computed exactly.


and and p.s. adam,
i found levels 3-4 refreshing, inventive and aweinspiring, and not the same old stuff valve have been peddling in ep2.
and THANKYOU for adding HDR into level _1 it looks FAR supperior to the lost coast....don't ask me why...same textures and all, but the beaches just look *so* much better now.... thank you for doing such a wonderfull job!!!

Cargo Cult's gravatar

89. Dev Dev Revolution

Posted by Cargo Cult at 1:18PM, Saturday October 20 2007

Been editing the slightly neglected VDC page - should be a lot better now:

http://developer.valvesoftware.com/wiki/MINERVA

And, the rate of downloads is increasing enormously. Hooray! ... Acolyte-o-task-of-right-now: seed the torrent.

http://www.parm.net/torrents/metastasis_patched.exe.torrent

Clintons? I once worked with a non-Clinton Hilary who's now in Washington DC, but I don't think she's the same person. And any hidden messages in MINERVA must be so well hidden that I've not seen 'em before... ;-)

Ace's gravatar

90. We apologise for the inconvenience

Posted by Ace at 1:21PM, Saturday October 20 2007

Sorry Sortie, and anyone else who didn't immediately notice the fact that it's a joke. See I thought wouldn't it be funny if Minerva = Hillary Clinton? Ha ha, eh? Well at least I thought so. 'Cause we all know when the cameras aren't rolling she must be one holy terror. (alright seriously though I don't have anything against Hillary Clinton, I just found the idea amusing.) And I had realized that it's a simple matter to replace messages in titles.txt to generate your very own Minerva messages. (It's a real screenshot, just my fake text.)

Anyway perhaps the joke isn't as evident to non-Americans, for which I apologize, I guess I just couldn't resist. Around me these days if you say Hillary people immediately know who you mean. It's like Madonna or something. (And I can't think of anyone else actually named Chelsea.)

Sorry for the confusion.

Baffled's gravatar

91. Many a true word is spoken in jest

Posted by Baffled at 2:01PM, Saturday October 20 2007

That was a first class scam, Ace, first class.

But I fear you may be closer to the truth than you intended, not with Minerva thank God, but with *that woman*.

The thought of Hillary Clinton being the most powerful person in the world just scares me silly, regardless of whom she would be replacing.

------------

On a lighter note, a nifty Portal T-Shirt is available:

http://store.valvesoftware.com/img/productpage/getthegear/Zoom_PortalShirt.jpg

What do we think about a MINERVA range of apparel? Perhaps bearing the switch logo or "Bastard Perseus" or "Acolyte of Minerva" or simply "Lab rat" ... ?

Also, how about a MINERVA themed Portal map pack, in which Minerva attempts to recruit a not completely retarded subject for Her assault on that island, via a few cunning mental and physical agility tests?

It would be fun trying to solve Portal puzzles whilst being insulted by text message by Minerva.

kast's gravatar

92. MINERVA: Aperture

Posted by kast at 6:35PM, Saturday October 20 2007

Sounds bloody brilliant!

Sortie's gravatar

93. Another assembly.

Posted by Sortie at 8:24PM, Saturday October 20 2007

Minerva "You are my rat in my cage, trying to escape, has you?"
GLaDos "You are lab rat. You have escaped. Come back"

vindow_viper's gravatar

94. ha ha...

Posted by vindow_viper at 10:16PM, Saturday October 20 2007

A dear friend once told me that Hillary C's campaign song should be Elton John's 'The B**** is Back'.... I laughed for a long time...!

Pyro-Dude's gravatar

95. No, No

Posted by Pyro-Dude at 10:32PM, Saturday October 20 2007

It should to be Queen B**** by David Bowie

(swear words need to be censored here?)

FinalWarning's gravatar

96. Acolades Supreme!!!

Posted by FinalWarning at 9:29AM, Sunday October 21 2007

Minerva just made it onto Steam Update News. Congratulations Adam, you have a whole company as converts.

Ace's gravatar

97. Minerva's school for the not completely retarded

Posted by Ace at 8:49PM, Sunday October 21 2007

Good idea Baffled!

The few, the proud, the not completely retarded.
Be all you can be, unless all you can be is a complete retard.

(sorry, all I can think of is US armed forces recruiting slogans)

Dagda Mor's gravatar

98. Re: Minerva's school for the not completely retarded

Posted by Dagda Mor at 11:35PM, Monday October 22 2007

Yeah, Ace, I know what you mean. Few things are more annoying than Hillary-lovers, the sort of people who interrupt discussions on sci-fi computer games in order to spout off vague, crowd-pleasing quips which ignore the potential for multiple intelligent viewpoints to exist with regards to a given political issue.

And by "lovers" I certainly do not mean "haters". That's a different matter entirely, right?

Ace's gravatar

99. politics?

Posted by Ace at 3:30AM, Tuesday October 23 2007

Wow, subtlety, intrigue, nice. (I was just making an attempt at a joke though, really!) This all borders on dangerous territory though. It's oh-so-tempting to start a hopefully-friendly flame war, I've got some nice juicy diatribes on the matter just waiting to go. But, these things don't always manage to stay friendly. However if any haters want to start a thread in the forums I'll be glad to tell them how stupid they are there!

Dagda Mor's gravatar

100. :)

Posted by Dagda Mor at 4:01AM, Tuesday October 23 2007

Heaven forbid.

Yar Kramer's gravatar

101. What's in a name?

Posted by Yar Kramer at 6:52PM, Tuesday October 23 2007

For those of you who still don't like "Out of Time", I might remind you that the FIRST map to feature Minerva was called "Someplace Else."

Sirc's gravatar

102. Nomenclature Order Derivatives Suggest...

Posted by Sirc at 2:54AM, Wednesday October 24 2007

Realizing this, does this mean that part 3 of MINERVA might start with a 'P'? Always a chance I suppose... Maybe there is a hidden connection between the games. Besides the obvious connection, what of the name? Letting it start with an 'S' with MINERVA starting with an 'M'... It could leave a 'Q' and 'R'. If the creator is still willing at that point to make further installments of the overarching story. Never mind that though... Going out on a limb to say that the maker will (with no reason for regret) retire after finishing MINERVA.

(A grim yet happy day when that final section of the final chapter is released I suppose...)

Sortie's gravatar

103. Re: Nomenclature Order Derivatives Suggest...

Posted by Sortie at 3:55PM, Wednesday October 24 2007

A grim yet happy day? It's nothing but happy, Adam will then have a chance to move on to do something else, a new mod, a real game, or even get adapted by the industry.

Whatever, back to the research of how to mount content from other mod folders, so that e.g. for this mod could exist a sourcemods/minerva_shared/. Pretty complicated but awesome. ;-)

pox's gravatar

104. NightFall: Initiation

Posted by pox at 1:36AM, Thursday October 25 2007

NightFall: Initiation is dead.

in my opinion, one of the most promising and ambitious mods to grace the HL2 mod scene has left us.

I sincerely hope that they create something else in the future, perhaps resurrecting any would-be enviroments or character models from NF....

Yar Kramer's gravatar

105. Promising and ambitious

Posted by Yar Kramer at 1:40AM, Friday October 26 2007

Oh, I grieve with you, but ... THE most? What, you don't think Black Mesa: Source is likely going to be the biggest 500-pound gorilla out there when and if they finish it?

Elyscape's gravatar

106. Biggest 500-pound gorilla?

Posted by Elyscape at 6:10AM, Friday October 26 2007

If you have several 500-pound gorillas, aren't they all going to be roughly the same size?

Pyro-Dude's gravatar

107. But

Posted by Pyro-Dude at 11:17AM, Friday October 26 2007

What if ones really tall and thin and another's short and fat?

Sortie's gravatar

108. Re: But

Posted by Sortie at 12:16AM, Monday October 29 2007

Either way the volume would be the same, H*B*W = m^3...
If one number decreases but another with the same factoral amout, it'd be the same.. Math. xD

Baffled's gravatar

109. Rebuttal

Posted by Baffled at 1:15AM, Monday October 29 2007

But but but, Sortie,surely you are guilty of the blithe assumption that all 500-Pound Gorillas share the same density, are you not?

Density = Mass / Volume

Did you know that "if you mess with Math, it's like messing with a gorilla; it'll destroy you, and eat your brains."?

http://www.mathnews.uwaterloo.ca/Issues/mn9004/gorilla.php

Procyon's gravatar

110. "if you mess with Math, it's like messing with a gorilla; it'll destroy you, and eat your brains."

Posted by Procyon at 4:12AM, Monday October 29 2007

Gorillas are vegetarian and pacific, thus they don't eat brains and don't destroy.....

Which animal would do that anyway?

The phrase should be:
"if you mess with Math, it's like messing with a HUMAN; it'll destroy you, and eat your brains."

Ace's gravatar

111. rebuttaling

Posted by Ace at 7:41AM, Monday October 29 2007

If a tall and thin 500lb. gorilla fell over in the woods but no one was around to hear it, would it make a sound?

Baffled's gravatar

112. Unsound Reasoning

Posted by Baffled at 1:10PM, Monday October 29 2007

You are forgetting, Ace, that the Gorilla would hear the sound of its own fall, whereas the proverbial tree would not ;-).

Caveat: Unless the Gorilla had suffered a stroke and was unconscious, or dead, when he hit the ground!
-------
Which is in fact "bigger"; the tall and thin athletic Gorilla or the shorter fatter Gorilla whose volume would be greater (for the same weight, fat would occupy more space than muscle as it is less dense)?

Are you being heightist or am I being weightist, and why don't I have anything better to do than type this nonsense?
-------
@Procyon: I agree with you totally, Gorillas are much more "humane" than we Humans. Also the assertion that "Gorillas evolved into Humans" is incorrect (relatives are not ancestors) and rather insulting to Gorillas, no? ;-)

Sortie's gravatar

113. Re: Rebuttal

Posted by Sortie at 3:13PM, Monday October 29 2007

You seem forget that in the equation the mass is constant to 500lb.

Density = 500lb / Volume =>
Density = Mass / Volume

Which means that the density only depends on the volume which is, if it's a box shaped gorilla.

H*B*W = m^3

If the scale it's height by a constant and scale it's width with the reciproxal value of the constant it'll be.

H*B*W = (H*C)*B*(W*(1/C)) = m^3

Either way the volume would be the same.

Baffled's gravatar

114. No But ... Yes But ... No But ...

Posted by Baffled at 5:11PM, Monday October 29 2007

This could be in the running for the Argument-of-The-Week-Award.

*Shakes fist at Yar Kramer and Elyscape, for starting this*

Does a tall and thin not-necessarily-box-shaped Gorilla occupy the same amount of space as a shorter and fatter Gorilla of the exact same weight?

Sortie, you are *making* the two volumes be equal by your "reciproxal" shenanigans, instead of demonstrating their equality ;-) .

The point I was trying to make is that the short and dumpy Gorilla might well have more fat than muscle compared to the leaner taller Gorilla and as fat is less dense than muscle, the dumpy Gorilla will have a greater volume as it will take more fat (by volume) to match a given weight of muscle.

D = M / V lower D for a given M means a proportionally bigger V.

Perhaps it may be clearer with arses/asses than with Gorillas:

http://somedayisnow.blogspot.com/2006/04/muscle-vs-fat-illustrated-example.html

Sortie's gravatar

115. Yes, so?

Posted by Sortie at 5:59PM, Monday October 29 2007

Please next time use some SI-Units next time we've a scientic discussion, such as kg instead of lb, and weight is in Newton, mass is kg.

Anyways, another question is, are the gorillas pressured by the exact same amount of pressure? Let's change the question a litle.

Does a tall and thin not-necessarily-box-shaped Gorilla occupy the same amount of space as a shorter and fatter Gorilla of the exact same mass, while they're both pressured by 101.300Pa (~=1 ATM)?

Still their volume can very if they suck a lot of air into their lungs, and this makes such calculations yet more complicated. But let's forget about that.. for now..

Their volume must be:
Gorilla-Volume = Density-Average-Gorilla-Matter * Mass

But since, as a part of the question, the gorillas are not made of exact same percent of muscle and fat, we need to equations.
(Gorilla-1 is the tall one, and 2 is the fat)


Gorilla-1-Volume = Density-Average-Gorilla-Matter-1 * Mass
Gorilla-2-Volume = Density-Average-Gorilla-Matter-2 * Mass

Gorilla-1-Volume > Gorilla-2-Volume =>
Gorilla 1 is occupying most space.
Gorilla-1-Volume < Gorilla-2-Volume =>
Gorilla 2 is occupying most space.
Gorilla-1-Volume = Gorilla-2-Volume =>
They occupy the exact amount of space.

Again you can understand the question diffrently, occupying space can also mean territory usage. :P

Ace's gravatar

116. Return to normalcy

Posted by Ace at 6:53PM, Monday October 29 2007

While this discussion has been tremendously enlightening, I think perhaps it is time to wrap it up and return to earlier times when conversation was simpler. Like back to when the gorilla was standing in the woods thing. Note in the similar quantum mechanics themed thought experiment of Schrodingers cat, the cat is not deemed sentient enough to 'collapse' a 'wave function' if you will. Baffled, you seem to be assuming that our favorite gorilla (oh, let's call her Betty)(the tall and a thin one of course) is sentient enough? Interesting, interesting. Betty would be pleased. It still leaves open the question of whether the moon really is above Betty's head though when she's not looking...

http://www.physics.iitm.ac.in/~arvind/ph350/mermin.pdf
(right click, save as if you're brower won't open pdf files like mine..)

Sortie's gravatar

117. What's with these physics links?

Posted by Sortie at 9:47PM, Monday October 29 2007

Honerstly, what's up this these links all the time. I won't click a single until I get a description of what's beyond it.

Also, in this thought experiment whatever Betty is sentient enough, the question is more, are we sentient enough to make such thought experiments. And since it's an experiment, does it make Betty a 272.155422kg Lab Gorilla?

Ace's gravatar

118. Re: What's with these physics links?

Posted by Ace at 10:27PM, Monday October 29 2007

Well I wasn't the one who introduced physics to all this, I just thought perhaps the immeasurably profound nature of discussion deserved something a bit more, well, profound. And Betty objects to the suggestion that she has gained weight! She is still the same svelte 226.796185kg that she's always been.

I'm beginning to wonder though how the perspectives on this discussion vary from participant to participant? Oh well, perhaps we've besmirched Adam's blog enough for one day.

Baffled's gravatar

119. Beware Unintended Consequences

Posted by Baffled at 1:00AM, Tuesday October 30 2007

Well, that was fascinating, and really quite disturbing reading Ace. But it has left me with a serious headache, and I wonder how I might get the headache to cease to exist by somehow not observing it. I mean if it would work for a massive object like the moon...

The catch22 is that it would have to be gone before I could manage to stop observing its presence, in order to end its existence. So I can't end the headache until after it ceases to exist. Gah! What a headache! ;-)

PS: If a complete absence of interaction, specifically observation or perception, can "unrealise" an object like the moon, could we, by imagining Betty, be *realising* her in some vaguely physical sense in this or some other universe?

PPS: If the answer is yes, I'm *not* taking the blame, I mean it was you who gave her a name Ace, and Yar Kramer who introduced the idea of a 500lb Gorilla, I was just an innocent bystander!

Honkenstein's gravatar

120. Brief review

Posted by Honkenstein at 1:00PM, Tuesday October 30 2007

Fantastic, Adam.

Minerva: Metastasis is a great, great mod ... IM(H)O. How can one person do so much?!? It flabbergasts me. Obviously the credits tell that others were involved in various ways though.

I really enjoyed the balance of ... everything! Especially helpful were the mysterious guide's hints. I hate getting stuck for not knowing, remembering, noticing, or discvovering what I had to do next.

I hope your 2.5 years invested reward you financially as well as giving you international gamer's community kudos.

"Lost Coast" showed off some gfx card effects, but your mod was like a HL2:Ep"2.5". I love all the HL stuff thus far (full points to all the dev teams!), but I think you and your cohorts - and especially you - are worthy of special recognition for your accomplishment.

I can scarcely wait another 2.5 years. Do I have to? Please don't make me wait that long. 8(

Regards and many thanks
Honkenstein

PS - I really liked Koumei Satou's "Mistake of Pythagoras" too. Querky and original.

fuzz's gravatar

121. Mistake of Pythagoras

Posted by fuzz at 7:21PM, Tuesday October 30 2007

(if you liked Mistake of Pythagoras, go look for "Pieces like Us" by the same author for Halflife 1, dead good it is)

oh, and welcome to Adam's blog that we inhabit

belboz's gravatar

122. wind

Posted by belboz at 12:58PM, Wednesday October 31 2007

if gorillas eats plants, plants when eaten produce a lot of gas, as the gas is lighter than air, wont the gorillas that are bigger consume more plants, producing more gas, making them lighter than the smaller gorillas that consume less plants, although if gorillas ate meat then they would have 10 years worth of undiegested meat in there intestings making them considerably more heavy than the plant eating ones.

Yar Kramer's gravatar

123. Re: "Pieces Like Us"

Posted by Yar Kramer at 3:43PM, Wednesday October 31 2007

It's actually "Peaces like us". I'm guessing the mapper is better at mapping than English. ;)

Cargo Cult's gravatar

124. Speedier Gravatars?

Posted by Cargo Cult at 10:57PM, Wednesday October 31 2007

I've written a naff local caching system, which may or may not make Gravatars go a bit more quickly.

Please say if pages take longer to load or whatever...

Ace's gravatar

125. gravatars

Posted by Ace at 11:47PM, Wednesday October 31 2007

Aargh, my (gr)avatar is now pointless and not even amusing to me! Aaargh.

The gravatars load very quickly for me usually so it's hard for me to judge if this is faster. Maybe in the long run I'd be able to make a judgement..

(and belboz, while your flatulent and profoundly constipated gorilla theories are intruiging, I really have no idea where to go with them.)

(and Baffled, 'innocent bystander'? You were the closest thing Betty had to a mother!)

Sortie's gravatar

126. Re: Speedier Gravatars?

Posted by Sortie at 12:00AM, Thursday November 1 2007

What a great idea, I've always had the problem with gravatars being quite slow, now that I think about it, how can Size<2kb images be so slow? The cache system is a really good idea instead, but there could be some problems with it anyways, if the enduser of this blog updates his gravatar, would it update instantly?
Maybe the system is clever and sends a conditional query to the gravatar server, something like, if updated since [Cached version date] then respond with the new, otherwise to do nothing. (Smart guy translate that into HTTP/1.1, ain't bothered right now. :P)
Or does it just update the avatars every 2nd hour, or at every 20th request?

kandinski's gravatar

127. Orthochronous

Posted by kandinski at 1:33AM, Thursday November 1 2007

I think you should keep the greek vibe for your naming, so let me suggest you call your next episode "Orthochronous". Since Euclid used "ortho" to signify perpendicularity, your "out of time" theme would be maintained, even if metaphorically.

And an orthochronous Lorentz transform is one that maitains the direction of time, so you can say that you episode is "out of time, but advancing parallel to it".

Orthochronous. You can imagine Minerva rolling her ascii transmission channel (or does she use UTF-8? She must, if she is as ambivalently evil-good as we assume) around each of the syllables.

Orthochronous. Mmm.

Anschluss's gravatar

128. *!

Posted by Anschluss at 2:44AM, Thursday November 1 2007

Brilliant!

Hunty's gravatar

129. Minervaness and Portalness

Posted by Hunty at 6:02AM, Thursday November 1 2007

http://www.invertedcastle.com/archives/2007/10/31/merciful-minerva/

Sortie's gravatar

130. numitorrexest

Posted by Sortie at 12:42PM, Thursday November 1 2007

deasapiensludetludominervam

Rebecca's gravatar

131. Minerva

Posted by Rebecca at 11:27PM, Thursday November 1 2007

Hi Adam

I'm not your usual gamer, but I have to say that I love the whole Half Life thing and not to sound like a complete idiot I thought that the last Minerva was excellent but this addition was superb, I enjoyed every minute of it, just hard enough without being impossible.

Well done, if you don't mind me saying so, please don't stop, I can't wait for the next one, whatever you decide to name it, nothing beats this kind of gaming!!!

I guess I just want to say, 'Thank you Adam'.

Rebecca

Baffled's gravatar

132. Gender-Neutral Idiocy

Posted by Baffled at 1:08AM, Friday November 2 2007

It's nice to see more girls/women emerging from the gaming closet and openly enjoying computer games.

But, Rebecca ( welcome by the way ) I did notice a certain verbal distancing going on in that post! Your eagerness to point out that you're not the "usual" gamer, and your concern for not sounding like a "complete idiot" for liking Half-Life and MINERVA tend to suggest that you think that many of us sound like, well, complete idiots! ;-)

I'm afraid that impression is both well deserved and accurate, but I say to you, cast aside your reservations and be a proud member of the Acolytes of Minerva!

It's easy to forget how rare MINERVA is in being a game built entirely around a female central character, excluding the many machines that have been given feminine personalities in games, and it would be a good thing indeed if Portal's well documented appeal to female gamers resulted in MINERVA receiving a share of that emerging interest.

Come to think of it, are we sure that *we* are male in MINERVA, or have we just assumed, bunch of chauvinists that we are?

Do the Overwatch recruit women? I'm not sure the feminine touch is much in demand in the Combine's New Order, but then again, to ignore half the available workforce would be intolerably inefficient!

Sortie's gravatar

133. Re: Gender-Neutral Idiocy

Posted by Sortie at 8:44AM, Friday November 2 2007

Ever saw the pictures of the combine female assasian, or the female metrocop skins for GMod?

Rebecca's gravatar

134. Gender-Neutral Idiocy

Posted by Rebecca at 11:23AM, Friday November 2 2007

My apologies for any offence that you may have taken from my comments Baffled. I do not think that any of you sound like idiots, but as you quite rightly point out the female gamer is rarely given any representation and are sometimes made to feel that they have no idea about such things as computer games! I am very proud to be a member of the 'Acolytes of Minerva'.

I loved HL 2 and the original HL, Episode one and two have been good too, but too short for me. I've also enjoyed Halo recently and am looking forward to playing Bioshock soon. But these mods for HL are such good fun, Lost Coast and Riot Act were also really well done.

Anyway enough of my wittering on, enjoyable as it is writing my views on gaming!

As for Overwatch recruiting women I doubt I would be the first in line, I'd be too busy blowing the Combine away with their latest weapons and enjoying every last minute of it...

kast's gravatar

135. Overwatch Recruitment Poilicy

Posted by kast at 3:08PM, Friday November 2 2007

First, welcome to the madding crowd, Rebecca.

I am sure that the CP do infact recruit females to the force. As do the combine army. They have at no point shown gender bias in how they oppress and torture the general populace of the post-resonance cascade world.

Besides, who's to tell who's what under those masks and bulky body armour? I would imagine that the Combine go for a 'one-size fits all' mentality with their uniforms. And the voices are so modulated it's impossibly to tell one from another, let alone male from female.

Baffled - You hit on the key factor: Efficency. Such a mindless, crushing machine as the Combine wouldn't even consider not making full use of the "fairer sex". At least sexism isn't one of their sins.

I imagine the reason Valve chose not to introduce overtly female enemies was so as not to sexualise the Combine in any way. Lycra-clad, highly sexualised assassin types are best left with the black-humour stylings of the original Half-Life. They do not suit the more serious and oppressive tone of the new world.

About Perseus as a woman: I think it's unlikely that we're playing a woman, though really all I'm basing that on is that we are referred to as various male mythylogical heroes. Then again, I can't immediately think of any strong female heroes in romano-greek myth...

fuzz's gravatar

136. well

Posted by fuzz at 6:53PM, Friday November 2 2007

Apart from Minerva herself of course, and Athena...
and that's about as far as my knowledge of greek myths goes...

Sortie's gravatar

137. Re: well

Posted by Sortie at 7:41PM, Friday November 2 2007

Well, Minerva is the roman name for Athena. :P At least, that's what my [language here] book says.

Dea sapientiae ludet. Ludo Mineram.

locworks's gravatar

138. OMG Girlz Don't Exist on teh Intarweb!!!!1

Posted by locworks at 8:03PM, Friday November 2 2007

Strong female characters in mythology (small sample):
- Medea
- Circe
- Artemis
- the Amazons

If you want to read up on gender and online perceptions thereof: http://www.escapistmagazine.com/articles/view/issues/issue_17/109-OMG-Girlz-Don-t-Exist-on-teh-Intarweb-1

Ace's gravatar

139. Re: OMG

Posted by Ace at 8:44PM, Friday November 2 2007

Excellent article find there locworks. I guess I'd have to admit to the same sort of skepticism as the guys from her article sometimes. I have known some girls (in real life) who play online games but I still generally assume online gaming personas, like those here, are guys. Hope I haven't said anything stupid! After reading that article though I'll try to be a bit more open minded. (But goodness, I'd never demand a picture, that's just ridiculous. Sometimes I wonder how all the other sorts of images of women to be found on this here intarweb affect the minds and attitudes of the young lads from the article?)

Rebecca's gravatar

140. Just trying out my new Gravatar

Posted by Rebecca at 12:25AM, Saturday November 3 2007

I bet it doesn't work...

Rebecca's gravatar

141. Hooray

Posted by Rebecca at 12:26AM, Saturday November 3 2007

It does!!

Yar Kramer's gravatar

142. Dudes vs Girls

Posted by Yar Kramer at 3:21AM, Saturday November 3 2007

You know ... on those occasions where I masquerade as a girl on the internet (har har), I generally don't usually encounter that kind of thing. Admittedly, it's because I have taken pains to hang out around the more *intelligent* people, where saying "OMG" alone is frowned upon.

kast's gravatar

143. RE: well

Posted by kast at 9:42AM, Saturday November 3 2007

I specifically said heroes, not characters. those two you mentioned are gods.

Locworks however pointed out some real greek female heroes, so... so something. *zzzz*

Ace's gravatar

144. Dude? Girl? Poser? A little confused?

Posted by Ace at 12:28AM, Sunday November 4 2007

Yar Kramer, I'm afraid I don't quite follow exactly what you mean. Do you mean that a) you're a girl, b) you're a guy who actually does pretend to be a girl online on occasion, c) neither, just making a general comment about how girls are treated where you hang out, or d) mind yer own beeswax?

LNL(coldshock)'s gravatar

145. OMG

Posted by LNL(coldshock) at 3:49AM, Sunday November 4 2007

Holy shit i haven't been here in so long, and i know adam has finally released the last two parts to minerva, and i was looking at the info on it. It says i Need episode1 to play. Is this true, would i be able to play it without episode1 because i dont have it. :(

I really want to play it, so hope I can. :D





Wat's everyone been up to since the last time I was here?

Sortie's gravatar

146. Re: OMG

Posted by Sortie at 11:06AM, Sunday November 4 2007

Yeah you need Episode One to play it. You can however hack it into believing it's a HL2 mod, and then you don't need Ep1, however loads of content will be missing, and I doubt you'll be able to play it.
I recommend the Orange Box.

Yar Kramer's gravatar

147. Re: Ace

Posted by Yar Kramer at 6:41PM, Sunday November 4 2007

It's a "B" there.

I have yet to seriously encounter any females who masquerade as males, though I can understand why they would.

Captain_Planet's gravatar

148. ...

Posted by Captain_Planet at 4:36AM, Monday November 5 2007

It's definitely tough to discern the gender of who's behind the mask of that level 54 rogue elf on your WoW server, but i try to stick to a rule of thumb.


The internet -
Where men are men, women are men, and children are the FBI.

Elyscape's gravatar

149. re: Captain_Planet

Posted by Elyscape at 5:50AM, Monday November 5 2007

That actually refers to /b/, not the internet in general.

belboz's gravatar

150. Wimmen gamers

Posted by belboz at 5:56AM, Monday November 5 2007

There's a lot of wimmen that still play the thief game, cos you have the option of not killing anything cept spiders and burricks, just hit the enemy over the head with a big club then stick the unconcious body in a shadow somewhere.

And if you uses team speak in wow you can tell which ones are the wimmen.

Nesretep's gravatar

151. Gravatars working? We shall see...

Posted by Nesretep at 7:20PM, Monday November 5 2007

Wow...haven't been here in a while myself. I do make quite regular appearances on the forum though! :) Ya'll come to the forum and visit now, ya hear?

Nesretep's gravatar

152. NO gravatar...what's up with that?

Posted by Nesretep at 7:22PM, Monday November 5 2007

Maybe I just need to email Adam on this one...my Gravatar NEVER shows up.

Sortie's gravatar

153. Re: NO gravatar...what's up with that?

Posted by Sortie at 8:02PM, Monday November 5 2007

It's pretty much your own fault, or gravatars, I had tons of trouble myself, but then I realized their site was bugged with the selection menu. Then comes the fact that 80px avatar of some stange reason didn't work for me. You're probably stuck in the Cache system right now if it's neither of these. Or you just entered the wrong email when you registered here. ;D

Ace's gravatar

154. no gravatar?

Posted by Ace at 9:37PM, Monday November 5 2007

Well, maybe you could just describe it to us, then we could use our imagination?

Procyon's gravatar

155. A question about the grenades of Half Life 2....

Posted by Procyon at 9:55PM, Monday November 5 2007

I read at the half-life wikia, that the ' nades have a secondary "attack"; instead of throwing them, you just drop them... I don't recall that (I haven't played HL2 or any source game since september)

Can somebody tell me if this is true?

locworks's gravatar

156. 'nades

Posted by locworks at 10:04PM, Monday November 5 2007

...can be thrown (Mouse 1) or cooked (Mouse 2, G, Mouse 2, smell the aroma, snicker, aim, Mouse 1, SHIFT+S, S, S, S...

Failing G and Mouse 2 = boom!

Sortie's gravatar

157. An answer about the grenades of Half-Life 2

Posted by Sortie at 10:45PM, Monday November 5 2007

Indeed, there are two ways of throwing them. The first is actually a throw, while the second is a middlething between completely dropping the grenade and tossing it a bit away. The second is, as pointed out above, really effective if the player is skilled with the "gravgun+grenade+good time = boom" method. Honerstly this method is best within HL2DM, since you always start out with two grenades after each respawn.¨

And since we earlier had a discussion about Combine Female assasians, I just randomly found an image of them at Google, take a look if you haven't seen them before, http://www.remusbrailoiu.evonet.ro/albums/3D/Portrait/1280x960/Combine_Assassin2.jpg

locworks's gravatar

158. combine assassin

Posted by locworks at 10:51PM, Monday November 5 2007

'at's a gynoid, guv! More related ramblings and superb quote-fu by Ace at http://www.hylobatidae.org/minerva/forum/viewtopic.php?t=130

Ace's gravatar

159. combine assassin

Posted by Ace at 11:36PM, Monday November 5 2007

That is one, um, er, well endowed assassin. Apparently her, aaarr, ummm, assets are important to her job, what given the Combine's bio-engineering and all. She certainly draws an erect.. sorry, a reaction out of me.

I think Baffled started this topic off well meaning enough, by trying to encourage more women into gaming or something of the sort by demonstrating that we're not all a bunch of immature drooling idiots. That doesn't seem to be working out very well does it? There's also this bit of maturity to ponder on: http://www.rockpapershotgun.com/?p=537

Baffled's gravatar

160. 'Til death do us part

Posted by Baffled at 1:26AM, Tuesday November 6 2007

Wow, Sortie's Combine "Elitette" is a hot little number is she not?! ( Yes, I know that I'm letting the side down a tad with that comment but there you go.. )

I'm glad they don't appear in HL2 canon as I might find it hard to shoot such a lithe and lovely creation.

In fact it is often stated by male gamers that they would find killing female characters in games a little disturbing, but it seems that female gamers have startling few qualms about despatching whole armies of males!

Should this be a cause for concern, or do we have it coming? :-(

kast's gravatar

161. possibly a solitary opinion

Posted by kast at 1:36AM, Tuesday November 6 2007

"In fact it is often stated by male gamers that they would find killing female characters in games a little disturbing"

Blatant sexism on their part! A person's gender should play no part in one's decision whether or not to blow their brains out the back of their heads!

Homicidal equality for all!

Rebecca's gravatar

162. Killing

Posted by Rebecca at 3:47PM, Wednesday November 7 2007

I have no problem in killing either male or female characters it makes not difference to me.

Should it?

Procyon's gravatar

163. Re: killing

Posted by Procyon at 3:44AM, Thursday November 8 2007

Probably you care not about that, because this society is machist (how do you call that in english?), or better said, there are high concentration of testosterone in politics, mass media, etc. and sadly, women must fight harder than men to be at the same height of men.

And men care about that, because we are not acostumbrated (sp?) to fight against a member of the "weaker sex".... Notice: I am not a machist (or whatever is it called) and I love women in one way or another (except my sister).



That makes me remember that I hate killing animals in games. Houndeyes, antlions, mutants? No problem. Dogs (MoH)? hell no!

Ace's gravatar

164. spelling

Posted by Ace at 10:35AM, Thursday November 8 2007

Ah, common mistake, it's actually accostumbrated (2 c's).





(sorry, sorry, I'm evil, I know, it was just sort of funny. I think you're looking for accustomed? And earlier, perhaps misogynistic? Or sexist? Looks like you're thinking of masochist, but that doesn't really fit here.)

(and I actually didn't like killing the houndeyes. They were so dog-like. And more or less harmless.)

(oh, and I think we could definitely use some women enemies in game. As I may have mentioned before, erm, once or twice, there are times when I would be more than happy to pitch a flaming barrel at some female characters.)

locworks's gravatar

165. acostumbrado

Posted by locworks at 12:09PM, Thursday November 8 2007

terrific word!

fuzz's gravatar

166. Steam

Posted by fuzz at 1:22PM, Saturday November 10 2007

Go turn on steam and have a look what Valve have for us :)
I <3 MY CUBE

PyroD00d's gravatar

167. Wha?

Posted by PyroD00d at 1:36PM, Saturday November 10 2007

What be we looking at?

locworks's gravatar

168. That!

Posted by locworks at 3:02PM, Saturday November 10 2007

for all WCC fans...

http://storefront.steampowered.com/Steam/Marketing/message/1301/img/companioncubes.jpg

Pyro-Dude's gravatar

169. Ah

Posted by Pyro-Dude at 3:12PM, Saturday November 10 2007

I <3 MY CUBE I <3 MY CUBE

I <3 MY CUBEI <3 MY CUBEI <3 MY CUBEI <3 MY CUBE
I <3 MY CUBE I <3 MY CUBE
I <3 MY CUBEI <3 MY CUBE

fuzz's gravatar

170. Although

Posted by fuzz at 3:02PM, Sunday November 11 2007

It's not particularly cuboid, and probably not weighted. Maybe I'll have to go out and work out how to make a solid one...hmmm, we do sell milling machines at work...

Procyon's gravatar

171. I hate this cube...

Posted by Procyon at 9:56PM, Sunday November 11 2007

...It's pretty gay

Nightshade's gravatar

172. RE: I hate this cube...

Posted by Nightshade at 8:38AM, Monday November 12 2007

If the Faithful Weighted Companion Cube could talk
(and we would like to remind you that it cannot) it would surely say that you are free to your own, personal opinion. However, I know a fair few many people who see it far more sinister than "gay". Anyone else spend more than a half-hour attempting to save their cube? ^_^

SkUrRiEr's gravatar

173. RE: I hate this cube...

Posted by SkUrRiEr at 10:24AM, Monday November 12 2007

Personally, when I got to dropping it in the incinerator, I didn't really hesitate, I got the impression that it played a much larger role in Portal from the constant I <3 MY CUBE -ing - here and elsewhere - and promptly chucked it in the incinerator, guessing it'd be back in the next test chamber. - Sadly I was wrong - Damn you internet!

My girlfriend, however, reacted completely differently - she saw it over my shoulder whilst I was playing through with the commentary - and immediately fell in love with it.

I guess that makes me cold and heartless or something like that.

fuzz's gravatar

174. Minerva

Posted by fuzz at 11:48AM, Monday November 12 2007

This weekend I played through the new HDR'd metastais_1, and doesn't it all look pretty :) Makes the island look almost a nice place to be, and of course I was reminded why Adam gets so much praise, Minerva is bloody good.

fuzz's gravatar

175. Oh, and...

Posted by fuzz at 4:45PM, Monday November 12 2007

I seem to remember that There was a rumour of a soundtrack release sometime after the release of Minerva part three. Any more news on that? The music is just another part of the whole atmosphere.

xbskid's gravatar

176. Email changes

Posted by xbskid at 12:48PM, Tuesday November 13 2007

Hey, Adam. When will we get the ability to change our email addresses?

Sortie's gravatar

177. Epic Tale ( Now in HD-Bluray-ASCII-TCP-HTTP-WTF-BBQ-RSA-SSH-STEAM:// )

Posted by Sortie at 5:49PM, Wednesday November 14 2007

Recently I discovered a friend of mine played Minerva for the first time, as a matter of fact and discussion not going to be posted here, for a very very long time from now, I elected to contact some cargo guy at Steam.
Since the reciever in question for once was online, this was the perfect opputinity to use the smart community features. But due to Steam protocol issues, the chat window never launched and so I kinda gave up after Grahams Number * attemps. Doing a last critical attempt I misclicked and so the reciever got added to my friends list invitations, and ever since he has been offline to me, even though he apperas online on the community site. As I don't thrust the Mailing Protocol, ( for being delayed converasation, not real-time chat), I am now in a confused state where my important message ( Hi, ... ) wont ever be delivered to the reciever.

In case this post was missplled, please ignore the intentional misspells, as they are purely intentional to annoy you since you ever are available or join the group chat ( AOM ).

Cheers.

siman's gravatar

178. foster what kinda mod is this.......

Posted by siman at 12:36AM, Friday November 16 2007

i play the chapters dam fen a i come to donate and how do i donate stuff to you....

SenatorPalpatine's gravatar

179. Adam doesn't want your money.

Posted by SenatorPalpatine at 6:51AM, Friday November 16 2007

He'd rather you give it to charity, since you have extra. He had a list of charities somewhere, but I'm too lazy to look for it.


That would be cool if the soundtrack was released. As is though, I bet you can find it in the files if you want it badly. I'm pretty sure that's possible.

locworks's gravatar

180. Charities

Posted by locworks at 11:25AM, Friday November 16 2007

http://www.hylobatidae.org/minerva/blogsheep.php?action=articleinfo&id=8

Flobster's gravatar

181. Soundtrack

Posted by Flobster at 8:46PM, Friday November 16 2007

Simply look in the Minerva folder under Sound and then Music.

Cargo Cult's gravatar

182. Music?

Posted by Cargo Cult at 9:30PM, Friday November 16 2007

http://www.zhaymusic.com/

Ultra-high-quality versions thereof!

Also, a guestbook for your signing.

Sortie's gravatar

183. Oh hi Cargo-guy

Posted by Sortie at 10:53PM, Friday November 16 2007

Mind to give some feedback on my product Altered Transmission?

xbskid's gravatar

184. Transition from Episode One mod

Posted by xbskid at 2:28AM, Saturday November 17 2007

Adam, have you ever considered moving Metastasis from requiring Half-Life 2: Episode One to using the Source SDK Base? Would that give you anything more than what requiring any given game (In this case, HL2EP1) gives you now?

Sortie's gravatar

185. Re: Transition from Episode One mod

Posted by Sortie at 2:07PM, Saturday November 17 2007

Not really, he requires Episode One content in the first place. There is also some minor bugs in the SDK Base but I haven't looked into that. And then he'll need custom binaries to be compiled, something Minerva hasn't used yet.

SenatorPalpatine's gravatar

186. Metastasis's finished

Posted by SenatorPalpatine at 5:00AM, Sunday November 18 2007

He wouldn't be moving it to a whole new engine.



What does Source SDK base have that Ep 1 doesn't have?

Sortie's gravatar

187. Re: Metastasis's finished

Posted by Sortie at 10:10AM, Sunday November 18 2007

It doesn't require Ep1, just any Source game. SDK Base is perfect for total covertions.

Flobster's gravatar

188. SDK base

Posted by Flobster at 5:52PM, Sunday November 18 2007

Metastasis uses model/material/sound resources from EP1, although things such as the zombine exist in the SDKBase the model does not, I also spotted alot of combine bits like the ball catchers used.

Sortie's gravatar

189. Re: SDK base

Posted by Sortie at 6:55PM, Sunday November 18 2007

The Ep1 content doesn't exist within SDK Base, however a simple FileSystem mount doing startup can easily load this content.

Elyscape's gravatar

190. re: Sortie

Posted by Elyscape at 8:01AM, Monday November 19 2007

If it's going to use a mount to load the Ep1 content, what's the purpose of making it anything BUT an Ep1 mod? Especially since it's not a total conversion.

Nesretep's gravatar

191. 2007 ModDB Mod of the Year Awards!

Posted by Nesretep at 3:31PM, Monday November 19 2007

Voting will soon begin for the Mod of the Year Award on ModDB. Let see if we can show Adam our appreciation for such a fine piece of work as Minerva: Metastasis by making him number one! We got an honorable mention last year, but with the new release I think there a many more acolytes to help in this respect. So once the voting opens, get out there to ModDB and vote Minerva!

Yar Kramer's gravatar

192. Oh yeah

Posted by Yar Kramer at 9:14PM, Monday November 19 2007

Yeah, I'm gonna be voting for MINERVA. You bet.

Ace's gravatar

193. der

Posted by Ace at 10:02PM, Monday November 19 2007

What competition does it have? (and what's this 'we' business?)

I also just found this, thought it was quite amusing:
http://www.morbidoptimism.com/asc.html
Aargh for my compatriots!

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