Might not want to read this section if you haven't beaten Half-Life 2 and still want to. I played through Half-Life 2, and just finished it a couple of hours ago. I don't see what a lot of people were talking about with the story lacking or being hard to follow. I think that it was fairly easy to follow, but i'll admit, I didn't like the ending too much, I was fully anticipating having to escape with Alyx back to the streets or something, and then up pops the G-man, I didn't like that >_<. It ended too abruptly for my liking.
I downloaded the SDK for HL2 and toyed around with it a bit, but i've been unable to test the sample map I made, because it says it can't find the gameinfo.txt file in the necessary folder. I guess it's how I have it configured, but i'll get it eventually. It's not like the map I made is anything good, just a basic building, an explodable barrel and player start, just for testing.
I've never modded a game before, so this'll be the first, but I think it's going to be fun. My intentions aren't even much for gameplay at the moment either. Machinima is going to be great with the Source engine, especially when the FacePoser tool is released allowing you to setup the lipsynch for the models. Some pretty good looking movies will come from Half-Life 2, i'd bet.
I had a very weird dream last night. Very vivid and real. I was doing some shopping with my mom in a shopping center on the other side of town, and we were in a book store. I looked up and saw John Carmack browsing the bargain book table. My jaw nearly hit the floor and I watched him from the shadows (Sam Fisher style) as he went to pay. The book that he bought was something having to do with the Windows API, that's all I remember about it. So from there I followed Carmack through the shopping center and into a coffee shop. I waited in line as if nothing were out of the ordinary as he got his order and sat down on a nearby couch. I got out of line after two kids approached him for an autograph and went to talk with him.
"Could you sign this?" I said.
The first thing he said was "I saw you following me and I was kind of freaked out, but you seem cool enough, have a seat."
I began pounding him with various questions about Doom3. He responded brilliantly, of course [wink].
He asked if I wanted to work in games. Now, before this dream I had moved away from wanting to do games and closer to wanting to do robotics, but I said that I did indeed want to work in games. He told me to learn as much as I could and I would do alright, and then I woke up.
This has got to be one of the weirdest dreams i've had in years. It seemed so real, and after I woke up I actually did feel that I wanted to make games again. Maybe it's the way that I started out that turned me off to making games later on, i'm not sure.
I was about 14 when I first wanted to make games, so I bought several game development books and some C++ books and tried to learn it, but I guess that it was over my head for the time and I never really did much with it. Now however, after having some CS classes in college, I understand things much better than before, so i'm going to retrace my steps. My first step is going to be to learn OpenGL from the ground up. I'll try to digest Dave and Kevin's book again. This time maybe i'll get somewhere.