Black Mesa (Source)
Black Mesa (Formerly known as Black Mesa: Source) is the Half-Life 2 total conversion that attempts to remaster the original Half-Life game. Utilising the Source engine to completely update and enhance the experience, Black Mesa throws you into the world that started the Half-Life continuum and introduced Dr. Gordon Freeman to the world as a gun-toting, bullet-dodging PhD. in theoretical physics.
Black Mesa was built and founded on the principle that Half-Life: Source did not do the original title enough credit, regardless of the true intentions laid out with the release of HL:S. Subsequently in November 2004, Black Mesa was founded and set out to reconstruct the original title, giving it the new environments, models, and abilities it deserved on the Source engine. This total conversion does not require Half-Life: Source installed on your system to play, only a working copy of the Source SDK Base 2007.
The Black Mesa Team
Black Mesa has brought together some very talented, professional and dedicated developers. From level design to modeling to conceptual art to programming, the skillset is very noticeable. With 30 members, the team behind Black Mesa is representative of a new age in third-party development. For a full up to date team roster, personal portfolios and job assignments, stop by the official Black Mesa website.
The game features a branch of Source known as the "Black Mesa branch." It is a custom hybrid of several current branches of Source and includes many features from each. The BM branch SDK is planned to be released along with the game when it is completed.
- Redesign and overhaul of all chapters of the original Half-Life, including the Xen portion.
- Models now take advantage of increased polycount limits and normal mapping technology making deadly opponents and friendly coworkers appear more real
- An all-new face creation system that allows each character to have a unique, artist-created face
- A completely original soundtrack and music library bringing Half-Life's themes and feelings to life in the new sounds engine built into the Source Engine
- AI that will hunt you by sight and sound
- Normal, bump and specular maps built into textures giving flat surfaces a new, more dynamic look
- A multiplayer mode allowing for deathmatch and team deathmatch experience with the complete Half-Life 1/Black Mesa arsenal at your disposal
- Steam Workshop implementation and full support for modders
- Powerful Dynamic Lighting system
Black Mesa was released as a Source SDK Base 2007 mod on the September 14, 2012. It can be downloaded from the many mirrors available on the official website. This version has received no further updates.
It was later released on game on Steam as an early access game on May 5th 2015. It left early access with the 1.0 Update on March 6, 2020.
Future planned updates include the "1.5 Update", which will refine and fix the Earthbound levels of the game. This is slated to be the final major release of the game.