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Half-Life 2: Episode Two (stylized as HλLF-LIFE2: EPISODE TWO) is a first-person shooter video game, the second in a series of episodic sequels to the 2004 Half-Life 2. It was developed by Valve Corporation in tandem with Episode One, the first game in the series, and released in 2007 via Valve's Steam content distribution platform. The episode was released both separately and as a part of a bundled package, The Orange Box.
Episode Two gameplay consists of expansive environments, travel and reduced linear play, continuing Valve's policy of orienting each episode around a particular theme or set of technologies. Following the closing events of Episode One, it sees Gordon Freeman and the series' other major characters moving away from City 17 to the surrounding countryside.
The retail version was released on October 10, 2007, in North America and Russia for Windows and Microsoft's Xbox 360 after repeated delays. The version for the PlayStation 3 was to be released "around two or three weeks later", as it was produced separately at the Electronic Arts UK studio, according to Valve marketing director Doug Lombardi. This version was further delayed. For the rest of the world, the release date was October 18. The Steam version was released worldwide on October 10, 2007.
As with its predecessors, the game is played in the first person as series protagonist Gordon Freeman against transhuman troops, known as the Combine, and other hostile alien creatures. Levels are linear but add a more open environment, consisting of puzzles and first-person shooter game-play. Sequences involving vehicles are interspersed throughout the game, breaking up moments of combat.
One of the focal points of Episode Two was meant to be increased use of vehicles in open areas. However, the game retains its original linear style until the final battle. Episode Two has more puzzles than Episode One, including the biggest physical puzzle yet in the series—a damaged unstable bridge. The game features numerous "achievements" (similar to PlayStation 3's Trophies and Xbox Live's Achievements) for carrying out certain tasks. Some are essential to game progress, such as helping fight off an antlion invasion, or defeating the first Hunters. Others are optional tricks or feats the player can perform, such as killing a Combine soldier with their own grenade or running down a certain number of enemies with the car.
Video Review and Screenshots
Half-Life 2: Episode Two System Requirements
- Operating System: Microsoft Windows XP
- Processor: 1.7 GHz
- RAM: 512 MB
- Video Card: DirectX 8.1
- Hard disk space: 8.5 GB