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Video Game / Half Life: Residual Life

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Half-Life: Residual Life is a Game Mod for Half-Life developed by a Korean-based team called Radiation Studios. While the first release was in 2012, Radiation Studios has completed work on it, and is as of 2020 on version 1.9 public final.

The player character is Sora Kim, a clean suit-clad reactor engineer working at Black Mesa's Lambda Complex. When the resonance cascade hits, the player must control Sora as she survives the subsequent ordeal.


The mod is notable for its expansive maps and alternate paths (deviating from its parent game's nonlinear presentation). The story is more than a little vague, though according to the developers it is based on (or at least inspired by) Half-Life story writer's Marc Laidlaw's book The Third Force: A Novel of Gadget.

The mod can be downloaded here from ModDB.

Half-Life: Residual Life provides examples of the following tropes:

  • Abandoned Hospital Awakening: Sora wakes up in a hospital-like facility (possibly ran by the government) in the middle of nowhere after the credits.
  • Action Girl: Sora, who over the course of the mod becomes a sort of Distaff Counterpart to Gordon Freeman.
  • Crowbar Combatant: Sora, much like Gordon, gets a crowbar as her first weapon.
  • Elevator Failure: Sora has the misfortune of being in an elevator at the Lambda Complex right when the resonance cascade hits, but some how managed to survive being crushed when it falls.
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  • Extended Gameplay: There is a sequence after the credits where Sora wakes up in some sort hospital that has been abandoned after an unknown period of time. After coming across and subsequently killing a few monsters, she comes across an alien ship. When she enters, the screen fades to black and the captions reveal that she escaped in it.
  • Heroic Mime: Played with. Sora never speaks in the game proper, but in the beginning cutscene and the brief afterward after finishing the Extended Gameplay, she does say a few things via captions.
  • Or Was It a Dream?: The final sequence before the credits has Sora, no matter what path the player takes, back on the Black Mesa train system heading for work, suggesting that the mod has been some sort of dream. However, then the train goes a different direction than before, ending up at an outside area (where the player sees that it is instead night time) where a security guard appears after a flash and - speaking with the G-Man's voice - tells Sora she shouldn't be there. Then fade to black.
  • Shout-Out: Inexplicably, Black Mesa seems to have quite a few framed pictures of various anime, including Slayers and Yu-Gi-Oh!, lying around.
    • As mentioned in the description, the story takes inspiration from Marc Laidlaw's book The Third Force: A Novel of Gadget.
    • The level boss in the level Altar of Sacrifice is, for reasons unknown, basically a giant Boo.
  • Super-Deformed: The mod's menu features artwork (seen here) of Sora in chibi-form.

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