Concerned (Web Comic review) all after the break…


First, my updating has been less-than-consistent. That’s life. Not many people gather around this blog so I really don’t feel inclined to update daily or even consistently. More views = More incentive to not be lazy & produce content.

Also, I was getting fairly tired of reviewing Oblivion mods. Quite frankly, there were a few that I reviewed that were so bad that I just didn’t bother writing a review for them. I’ll eventually release the remainder of my Oblivion mod reviews at some point.

Anyway, if you’re like me (probably not, lucky fellows that you are), you probably have a bajillion bookmarks that you’ve accumulated over the years from all of your Internet surfing. Well, at some point, even lazy people like myself get tired of organizing the bookmarks into an endless hierarchy of folders (the bookmark equivalent for sweeping bookmarks under a rug). At some point, you need to perform some house cleaning or, as this case would be, “bookmark cleaning.”

While I was bookmark cleaning, I saw an old link to a web comic called “Concerned.” The web comic was a humorous & loose adaptation of the video game “Half Life 2.”

For those who are seriously not in the know, the Half-Life franchise features a character named Gordon Freeman who, as a typical young but brilliant scientist working at the usual run-of-the-mill super-secret hush-hush government facility, must escape the facility once it becomes a gateway for an invading army of intergalactic aliens. In “Half-Life 2,” Freeman is teleported, awakened, whatever, by a mysterious gentlemen called the “G-Man” into the near future where mankind has been enslaved by different aliens bent upon harvesting the planet’s resources & destroying mankind.

The web comic “Concerned” loosely follows the game’s storyline, introducing Gordon’s klutzy alter-ego, Gordon Frohman, who wanders through the game’s linear storyline in comedic obliviousness as a precursor to the real Gordon’s arrival.

The web comic was produced during 2005-2006 & I followed the web comic through most of it’s original run. I remembered generally enjoying the web comic when I had first read it & was disappointed that it ended at the events of the original game without extending into the storyline of Half-Life 2’s “Episode 1.”

Upon re-reading the comic series recently, I made the following revelations:

  • What is exactly holding up “Half-Life 3”? Half-Life 2 premiered in 2004. We’re now in the later months of 2009. That’s 5 years. 5 years for a sequel. Somewhere, out there, the character of Duke Nukem is smirking to himself.
  • Would it be safe to mention that the “Episode” experiment of Half-Life 2 has failed? Since 2004, only 2 of the 3 “episodes” has appeared. These episodes aren’t expansions like classic expansions used to be (like, say, “Doom 3: Resurrection of Evil”) but are shorter under the premise of “shorter but more frequent” content. I’m not sure that two episodes in a span of 5 years constitute as “episodes.” While I’m not a Half-Life fanboi, I still haven’t heard of a solid release date for Valve’s Portal-flavored (supposedly, according to the rumors) “Episode 3” yet.
  • It’d be awfully embarrassing if Id software (Valve software’s rivals) managed to release “Doom 4” (of which they are working on) before Valve could even push “Episode 3” out the door.

Anyway, upon further research (read: Google), I learned that someone had taken up the mantle of continuing the antics of Gordon Frohman. Despite the different writer, there doesn’t seem to be an appreciable drop in quality between the two web comics. Since I’ve never played “Episode 1” nor had any extreme feelings about the franchise, I probably have less of an emotional draw towards the sequel then I had for the original (which I did play).

I look forward to an eventual “Half-Life 3” if they bother to put out a proper title & not a “You must install Steam so we can spy on you” type of DRM silliness that “Half-Life 2” was all about. Odds are, that won’t necessarily be the case but, by then, the consoles (like the Combine) will have ruled everything & we may be fortunate if Valve decides to consider making a port for the PCs at some point.

Actually, I’m actually looking forward to “Black Mesa: Source” at some point but that’s an entry for another day…


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