Short Review: Black Mesa (PC Game)

Coming back to a modernized version of one of my favorite game worlds was memorable, especially the first hours, as it was immediately clear that a lot of care was put into faithfully recreating the original using more current technologies and ironing out some of the elements that hadn't aged that well, without veering too far from the source material.

As soon as I started the game and entered Black Mesa, it all had a familiar and welcoming feeling. As a fan of Half Life, everything was clearly recognizable visually but, at the same time, much better looking and the levels were similar but now often made more sense structurally. The layouts were still a bit nonsensical at times, but the facility now seemed more like a real place. I kept stopping every now and then just to enjoy seeing those well-known locations and characters with a fresh coat of paint.

In general, I had quite a good time during my playthrough but some sections didn't manage to keep me engaged and I just pushed on despite not having that much fun, hoping to recapture that initial impetus. The level design of some areas felt less inspired, boring or too long and a few of the old mechanics I was never too fond of, like the dull shooting, the horrible ladders or the excessive amount of platforming were still part of the experience. It wasn't perfect but it was a very successful attempt to bring new life into a classic, and there were enough remarkable moments to make playing it really worth it.




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categories: game-reviews