Cpl. Adrian Shephard

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Cpl. Adrian Shephard is the main character in Half Life: Opposing Force.

Cpl. Shephard brandishing an MP5 Navy submachine gun

Background and training

Adrian Shephard was a 22-years old Corporal in the United States military. Very little is known of his background except that he joined the United States Marine Corps and was later selected for special forces training. During this training, Cpl. Shephard developed into an adept sharpshooter with both small arms and sniper rifles. He opted to be transferred to the newly formed Hazardous Environment Combat Unit at the Santego Military Base in Arizona with a number of other Marines, where he underwent extensive indoors combat training for months.

Diary extracts

Cpl. Shephard kept a diary of his time at the Santego Military Base. Listed here are notable entries prior to his first mission.

March 3rd

Another typically hellish day at base camp... I'll be glad when this is over and I can get assigned a mission. There has been this weird civie spotted at base. Rumor is that he's from some government branch looking to recruit; others say he's with some secret research group. I would jump at the chance to join. It would be cool just for a change and the adventure.

March 6th

I finally saw the government guy today. I'm not so sure he is a g-man, but he was wearing a really uptight suit and carrying a briefcase. He looked like a lawyer or insurance agent to me. I did notice him checking me out. Several times throughout the day I spotted him just watching me during training. I wonder what he's up to...

March 9th

For weeks our drills have been the same crap day after day. Today we assemble for the morning run and our drill instructor tells us we have one week to become experts at indoor strategic combat. We will be spending every day this week at the combat simulation facility. As far as I know this is a specialized training not taught at boot camp. What I want to know is if this is to test our abilities to adapt or if we are being readied for a specific mission. Time will tell...

March 12th

The rumors have been flying since our indoor combat training began. Most of my peers are convinced that we are being primed for a mission. No one can agree on what the mission is. I have heard the name Black Mesa Facility thrown around a lot, but I have no information about the place. The rumors are that some top-secret research is going on there. Doesn't sound too exciting to me...

March 15th

The rumor has been confirmed. We are being trained for a mission at the Black Mesa Facility. All I know is that the place is being used by scientists who are doing some kind of new research. I can't imagine what we would be needed for. We were told today to be ready in case it happens tomorrow. I don't know what "it" is, but the whole thing is a little strange. I kind of hope it doesn't happen; the mission doesn't seem to have much excitement potential. I'd rather hold out for something with more likelihood of combat.

Ill-Fated Mission

The precise details of the mission at Black Mesa were kept from the soldiers to begin with. Unfortunately, Cpl. Shephard never got the chance to hear his orders before combat. His squad was to be carried to insertion by two V-22 Ospreys, designated Goose 3 and Goose 7. On route, the flight group was attacked by Xen manta-rays, instantly obliterating Goose 3 and killing all on board. Goose 7 was severely damaged and crashed landed into the Black Mesa Facility. Shephard and at least three other members of his squad survived the crash, but they were immediately attacked by vortigaunts. Shephard himself lost consciousness and was dragged to safety by the squad medic. He was later found by a few members of the science team, who attended to his wounds in a nearby infirmary. However, the rest of his squad had already perished in the battle.

Having regained consciousness in the devastated infirmary, Shephard allies himself with the science team survivors and attempts to recontact the rest of HECU. Receiving orders to pull out, Shephard heads to the designated extraction point. On the way, he is notably saved from death in biohazardous waste by the G-Man. However, upon arriving at the extraction point, the G-Man once again intervenes and seals Shephard off from the departing Osprey. Now forced to wander the facility alone, Shephard soon learns of another extraction point near the Lambda Complex and attempts to fight his way through to reach it in time. However, fate again plays against him and after a battle with Black Operations forces determined to kill everything in the base, Shephard finds himself on Xen. When he returns, he is completely lost and alone.

Again wandering aimlessly in the base, Shephard encounters another participating group known as Race-X. These new aliens are hostile to both the disarrayed Xen forces as well as humans. He also learns that the true objective of the Black Operations is to detonate a nuclear warhead and destroy the entire facility. After managing to successfully defuse the warhead, Shephard goes on to destroy the Race-X gateway and its gatekeeper, the Genoworm. At the last moment, Shephard is teleported away by the G-Man, who detonates the warhead that Shephard defused only a short time before, destroying the base. The G-Man then informs Shephard that he will be detained, and puts him into stasis.

See also