Zero Punctuation: The Orange Box

 Pages 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 NEXT

The Orange Box

This week, Yahtzee opens the Orange Box.

Watch Video

F**k yes, you are the best review ever.

It is funny to love a game...Ever seen someone love Barbie's Horse Riding adventure?

No you say? ...Ah, that's because he's been laughed all the way out of society...Brilliant as always.

And apparently you're an LFC fan...Even better :D

YNWA Yahtzee!

100% true, lovely portals mmmmmm

awsome review cant wait till next week

Wow, that was the closest I've ever come to literally rolling on the floor and laughing.

That was awesome, Portal is one of my favorite games.

nice plug for Jonathan Coulton at the end...

Portal is becoming like Tetra Master in FF9 for me...

Your a bastard Yahtzee, Man u FTW.



There that out the way i cant be fucked buying the orange box so your more then welcome to come ass rape me but the only reason why i cant play it is because i have no money at pressent and it looks like the british Econamy has gone to fucking shit thank you very much Gordon!

Wait untill i get paid and we'll see if His review goes hand in hand with the game and Valves totaly bithering obession with sea-saws.

Loved it! By far one of your best yet!

Where'd you find the cake?!

You can't be a Liverbore fan! Scousers won't even understand your reviews because they think t slow... This is all just a misunderstanding, right?!

another great review, seriously the only reviews i trust...

YNWA forever!

I was another who was pleasantly surprised by portal. Hey cool a puzzle fps with portals awesome, I was already on board, but it's the humor that really makes it take the cake... =P

Had to register to voice how much I appreciate these reviews. I loved the scooby doo action bar too btw

TOXX clause.

Nice one. I was expecting either Phantom Hourglass this week or TF2 as stand alone. Wasn't too far off but still...

Also, I don't know where you get the idea that you're notfunny when being positive. I enjoyed the ending - a lot... and I still occasionally watch the psychonauts review.

Finally, when I saw that you reviewed the ornage box - and knowing you're a football fan I was secretly hoping to hear the Dutch football anthem - We houden van oranje... (We love orange...)

Jonathan Coulton is a musical nerd god. Also, really fun to see live in concert.

Great review, keep up the good work.

the cake is a lie

Once again a solid review. Though I must point out that Dr. Magnusson was indeed in HL1. He even makes a comment about Gordon destroying his Casserole at the Black Mesa facility (which you could actually do in the very first part of the original game). Albeit, he did have a very small role in the first game, he was indeed there.

Also I think that Episode 2, was a good two hours longer than Episode 1. But I completely agree that Valve needs to get cracking on releasing their episodic content much more frequently.

TF2 is getting the most of my time and I'm not even a fan of online gaming.

Oh and Portal is the most unique, fun, and funny game I've played in years. I had the credits song "Still Alive" stuck in my head for days after I beat it.

The part about the sniper being a point-and-click adventure with only one command was particularly brilliant.

Also, if you haven't heard about the gnome, here is the best achievement in HL2:EP2. It's a brilliant addition to the title.

I honestly think this is one of the best things Yahtzee's done yet. Had me giggling like a schoolgirl the entire time.

And Portal IS bloody fantastic.

Just registered so I could say these gems.

- I was genuinly nervous when I saw you where reviewing the orange box, as I would have cried if you had said anything about the cakey goodness of portal.

- The above is not a lie.

- Great work, etc, Wednesdays == Heroes + Zero Punctuation.

(It's good to hear others love portal, people at work just look at me whilst I blather about portals fabulousness)


Bloody fantastic Yahtzee, keep it up. Funniest review so far!


Absolutely brilliant!

Easily one of my favorite reviews so far.

only one thing to say here.... "Hell.... Yes!"

Portal (and specificly it's ending) is some of the best gaming experiences I've had in the last few years. They hit it completely out of the park

even if the cake is a lie...

I guess I could try to be unique in my post, but, fuck it. Another spot on review of probably the best value of quality gaming in history and you criticized those things that needed it while keeping us all laughing until the very end and never coming off as a Valve fanboy*.

*I apologize in advance for using this shitty gaming buzz word.

Well, normal game + short game + short game + short game + short game = lots of game.

The tripod cat was brilliant.

I look forward to noon on wednesday every week thanks to Zero Punctuation. Good solid review. Very funny.

When Man U-0 came up, I laughed--hard.

When Liverpool 3 came up, I cheered. YNWA Yahtzee.

Fucking brilliant, as usual!

I look forward to noon on wednesday every week thanks to Zero Punctuation. Good solid review. Very funny.

When Man U-0 came up, I laughed--hard.

When Liverpool 3 came up, I cheered. YNWA Yahtzee.

Fucks sake is there any man u fans here?

Liverpool should have won the champions league...

Isnt barney with that doctor chick we saw close to the ending... i forgot her name

Ok,first of all,never be afraid to be positive. Sometimes you need to hear there's some good out there. And yes,Portal is a very good game. A little light and come across like a dressed up tech demo in a lot of ways,but I'd have to say I enjoyed the experience and hope to see a sequel,Portal 2: Portal With Guns.

I'm currently marching through Half-Life 2 and being the glutton for punishment I am,I put it on the highest difficulty setting availible. I've double checked several times. In fact,I'd say I've dozen checked it by now. It's on the highest and it's a walk in the park. I've gotten up to the airboat part and I haven't been challenged in the slightest yet. In fact,the hardest part of the game was going back to retrieve more ammo from the guys I just killed. They all just stand there like jackasses and shoot at me while I get them a lead lobotomy. I honestly don't see the super smarty AI Half-Life is famous for and never have. I guess I'm biased because UT had such great AI that ran around all over the place and you never knew exactly where they were spawning or where they were going. Granted,I used to practice by setting it for Team Deathmatch and put all the bots on one team and I was the other and proceeded to slaughter the lot of them for fun,but that's besides the point.

These chumps are no where near the challenge I've encountered in Serious Sam 2 and frankly,I don't think SS2 is all that hard. It's getting embaressing,really. Hard should be for people who like to murder everything in their way and there should not only be more enemies,but the enemies should aim better and move a little faster. It's to the point where if it doesn't have a gun,I just beat it to death with the crowbar. If it has a gun,I head shot it with a pistol or whatever gun is most plentiful there. It's just incredibly easy. I think the original was tougher than this if only because the soldiers in that game knew their machine guns had full auto which actually made them somewhat dangerous.

Well,I've gone on about it enough. I have stuff to do,then I'm gonna trudge through Half-Life 2 some more and hope something pops up to challenge me. I've already talked some about how I'd change TF2 and may get around to doing more of that later.

I have stuff to do,then I'm gonna trudge through Half-Life 2 some more and hope something pops up to challenge me.

If you want a challenge, get the gnome achievement.

Sub Lime. That was... god awful. x_x
Got me wanting to play Portal. This must be a conspiracy or something.
Good review, really.
And who gives about Liverpool? Marseille went vini-vidi-vici on their heads.

In an attempt to prove what a raving Yahtzee fanboy I am, and because I may be just a little more insane than the man himself, I present to you "Zero Punctuation...with Punctuation." A transcript.


the escapist presents o/~ It's all too beautiful o/~

the escapist's Zero punctuation o/~ It's all too beautiful o/~
"Half-Life 2: Episode 2" o/~ It's all too beautiful o/~
and the orange box too

Since evidence has led me to believe that Silent Hill 5 is currently in the hands of a pack of phenomenal idiots, the Half-Life 2 Orange Box has been pretty much the only game release I've really been looking forward to of late. The Half-Life series has always been a beacon of excellent design philosophy in the dark, wild, piss-stained swamplands of the video game industry.

Not that it's been easy to remain enthusiastic over the months; Valve have been shamelessly delaying over and over again like a uncommitted suicidal looking down from the edge of a towering rooftop. And then there was that bewildering announcement that the pack would needlessly contain the original Half-Life 2 and Episode 1. Valve's weak rationalization that pre-existing fans could give away their extraneous games as gifts was small comfort to jaded, friendless, misanthropes like myself.

But now the waiting's over and I can gleefully sit down to enjoy the latest adventures of everyone's favourite emotionally oblivious mute, Gordon Freeman. Then, six hours later, I had to stand up again because I finished it.

I can't help feeling that Valve have missed the point of episodic gaming somewhat. The whole idea is to mix up the usual rigamarole of game publishing by having shorter games at lower prices released more frequently, and while they have aspects one and two down, they continue to struggle with three. I seem to recall Valve promising that Episode 2 would be longer than Episode 1 to make up for the longer wait, but I guess that got kicked in the head somewhere along the line. But what the fuck, right? It's short but it's cheap and comes with lots of fun extras, not unlike your mom, so let's just run with it, and talk about the game.

Gameplay-wise, there's not much to complain about, continuing, as it does, Half-Life's usual extremely high standard of visual design and pacing. They hype promised free-roaming environments featuring epic Hunter chases and pitched Strider battles, but those only really come into it in the explosive finale, and everything before that is the usual linear path connecting encounter after encounter. That's fine, you know, that's the formula that made Half-Life great.

But stop me if any of this sounds familiar: fighting off enemies while waiting for a very slow elevator, dropping stepping stones in radioactive waste to get across while zombies pop up to claw at your ghoulies? The set pieces in this series are starting to repeat themselves a fair bit, and really, Valve? How many times are you going to make us do that see-saw puzzle? Yes, you made a physics engine. We know. Well done! But I prefer it when it's just propelling ragdolls gaily through the air.

Episode 2 does suffer a little from being the middle child, there's no real beginning and no real end so the story tends to meander around and it's difficult to shake the feeling that we're just killing time before the next episode wraps it all up. A new character is brought in without warning and everyone acts like we've always known him. It's actually quite perplexing. Valve has done a great job making us empathize with all the major NPCs so far so being introduced to a new one at this late stage is like coming home from school to find a walrus sitting at the family dinner table and you're the only one who seems to notice. The new boy, is of course, another Black Mesa scientist which makes you wonder if there's anyone in this dystopian future who didn't used to work at that bloody place.

Let me wrap up my thoughts quickly and move on. If you've loved Half-Life 2 and all it's runty children so far then you'll like this installment because it's pretty much more of the same. If you like blazing action peppered with variety and cleverness you could do a hell of a lot worse than Half-Life 2: Episode 2 (Manchester United nil).

Now then, Team Fortress 2 (Liverpool 3, sorry, I'll stop this now). Chances are you already know everything about Team Fortress if you're even remotely connected to the online FPS gaming in the last decade or so, but TF2 is basically just that, with a makeover, and all the corners cut off. A lot has been removed from the original TF classic model, but for all it's insubstantiality, it's incredibly well balanced now. There's a role for everyone, regardless of what sort of game you like: The Heavy for uncomplicated damage soaking thickies, The Spy for your back-stabbing stealth game dirtbag, and The Sniper for people who like point-and-click adventure games, though admittedly the only puzzle is "use gun on man." The complete omission of grenades sounds weird at first but it means that new players don't feel alienated by those tiresome obsessives who were all mastering the fiddly little bastards while everyone else is out having sex with girls.

If I do have to criticize it, and I do, I'd say there isn't much variety in the maps. You get to decide between territory control in a desert environment, territory control in an industrial environment, or, just to mix things up, capture the flag in a desert-industrial environment. But I guess this kind of this is all about mastering something through constant repetition, and to it's credit what little there is has been polished to a mirror shine.

Lastly, there's Portal, and if you're a regular viewer you'll understand how insane these words feel coming out of my mouth, but I can't think of any criticism for it. I'm serious, this is the most fun you'll have with your PC until they invent a force-feedback codpiece. I went in expecting a slew of interesting portal-based puzzles and that's exactly what I got. What I wasn't expecting was some of the funniest pitch black humor I've ever heard in a game. OK, it's only two to three hours long, but that's a good length for it, it means that it doesn't outstay it's welcome, and it narrows the gap between you and the balls-tightening fantastic ending. Absolutely sublime from start to finish and I will jam forks into my eyes if I ever use those words to describe anything else ever again.

Yeah, I know it's not very funny if I love a game, but fuck you. Portal's great and if you don't think so you must be stupid.

Can I have my money now, Mr. Newell o/~ This is not
BEN "YAHTZEE" CROSHAW o/~ the greatest song in the world, no o/~
Presented by
"ITCHYCOO PARK" o/~ This is just a tribute o/~
by the Small Faces

by Tenacious D
Copyrighted material used under Fair o/~ Couldn't remember, o/~
Use. If you are the copyright holder,
and believe you material has been o/~ the greatest song in the world, no! o/~
used unfairly please contact:

There's an awesome song in Portal by
Jonathan Coulton, he's one of my
favourite artists and you should check
out if you o/~ This is a tribute, oh! o/~
like upbeat folk rock about robots
Valve: Tell me where Barney Calhoun went
Transcript by William McDuff

 Pages 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 NEXT

Reply to Thread

Log in or Register to Comment
Have an account? Login below:
With Facebook:Login With Facebook
Not registered? To sign up for an account with The Escapist:
Register With Facebook
Register With Facebook
Register for a free account here