Spoiler Warning Half Life 2 Special EP11: The Bug Whisperer

By Shamus Posted Friday Oct 28, 2011

Filed under: Spoiler Warning 116 comments

Link (YouTube)

The management would like to apologize for the puns in this episode. However, management is precluded from doing so by the fact that the management is not in the least bit sorry.

Thank you for your patronage,
The Spoiler Warning Team


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116 thoughts on “Spoiler Warning Half Life 2 Special EP11: The Bug Whisperer

  1. Vipermagi says:

    The sound is pretty noticably desynchronised. My OCD senses are spazzing.
    “Oh shit, I missed” -> Josh walks around corner, guns down one Combine, then misses the shot.

    1. webrunner says:

      You are just having aural precognition. Better than oral precognition, which is either knowing what you are going to say, or the inability to be surprised by fellatio.

      1. nawyria says:

        Better than oral precognition, which is either knowing what you are going to say, or the inability to be surprised by fellatio.

        I spilled my drink all over my keyboard laughing when I read this.

        1. webrunner says:

          If only you had oral precognition precognition, you would have known when it was safe to drink.

    2. Indy says:

      It’s the six seconds at the beginning of the video. The voice audio kicks in that six seconds late. Probably an error in the editing process but since Shamus and Rutskarn have the delay in the video while recording, it doesn’t always seem out.

    3. Josh says:

      Yeah I’m not sure what was going on in this episode. At different places it seemed to be out of sync at different times. I’d call it a bitrate issue, but the other episodes were perfectly fine, so I’m stumped.

      1. webrunner says:

        I wonder if it has anything to do with the way that some loads cut out the audio and others didn’t?

      2. Small Ivory Knight says:

        Yeah. The audio really gets out of sink in places

        1. ACman says:

          It does get really draining.

          1. Shatterer says:

            Is this sink thing going to be a running gag now?

            1. decius says:

              Until the plumber arrives to fix it.

              1. Zagzag says:

                Basin’ all of your puns on this is going to get old quickly. There must be other untapped pun resources somewhere!

      3. Conlaen says:

        On the upside, the comments made by Shamus and Rutskarn are actually coming up as events are happening now, instead of way after the facts :)

  2. Tobias says:

    I hate the antlion weapon. The Antlions annoyed me so much that I always only want to kill them. And inside nova-prospect, they always stand in my way.

    But I still love nova prospect. But unless you play ludicrously slow, and let the antlions do all the work, it is very hard.
    I also stood there, listening to the whole speech several times, to make sure I got all of it. I had to kill some of my antlions first, to make them shut up.

    1. tengokujin says:

      SWAT 4: “You’re in my way, sir.”

      1. Methermeneus says:

        <Spoony>inarticulate rage</Spoony>

        At least we know Rutskarn will get it.

      2. Shatterer says:

        “You fool!”

    2. Daemian Lucifer says:

      How can someone not love the antlion weapon?Whats better than wave after wave of minions at your disposal?I wish I couldve brought them back to the city with me.

      1. Shatterer says:

        They do get in your way though. Bugged the crap out of me. In this episode you can see Josh getting hung up on them when he tried to destroy that red laser tripmine thing.

        Still, I like to use them every chance I get. There’s something inherently satisfying sending waves and waves of mooks at the enemy, occasionally using the gravity gun to throw radiators at turrets.

  3. Meredith says:

    I always, always shoot the first antlion that pops up after the boss fight right in the face (it startles me). I always feel really bad about it, too. Those guys do a great job clearing out the prison.

  4. X2-Eliah says:

    Aye, Nova Prospect is a nice location.. but Imo the citadel was better – mostly because of the sheer alien-ness of it. NP still has a very strong similarity to the other industrial areas of the game – not that it’s a bad thing, mind.

    1. swenson says:

      Although that’s kind of the point, as the first part of NP is supposed to be an old human-built prison from before the invasion. The newer part is kinda Citadel-esque.

      I agree, though, the Citadel is by far the coolest location in the game.

  5. JPH says:

    Latent Vortigaunt Awesomeness sounds like a solid band name.

    Also, yeah, that scene outside Nova Prospekt was a bitch on my crowbar/pistol/gravgun playthrough. Probably one of the hardest parts of the game. That may have been one of the only spots where I actually ran out of pistol ammo, or at least came close.

  6. swenson says:

    Ugh, Nova Prospekt. It’s a really cool area with neat new gameplay things, buuut… it’s just so hard in many areas! And healthpacks are just NOT close enough together for my liking!

    At least you get antlions. And they make up for a multitude of sins.

    Also, Josh, you’re reading Snuff? I just got my copy and finished it a few days ago! I loved it! Vimes is pretty much one of the best inhabitants of the entire Disc.

    Also also, Shamus, I always assumed Antlion Guards were female until I played Episode Two. Then I figured the Guardians were the mommy ones, and Guards were the daddy ones. But I’m fairly certain insect physiology doesn’t work that way. Probably both kinds are supposed to be female.

    1. Daemian Lucifer says:

      What,snuff is out?Damn,I must get my fingers on it!

    1. Methermeneus says:

      But why is a Kamen Rider giving the Power Rangers all the credit for saving Tokyo?

  7. GM says:

    heh Bug Hunt.

    and yeah that last bit was not even a pun.

  8. Paul Spooner says:

    You know, I never noticed that we didn’t have doorknobs in CA. Probably because, we actually do have doorknobs! What’s wrong with you? Did you grow up in a prison or something?

    1. Rutskarn says:

      Obviously there do exist doorknobs in California, yes, but they’re a damn sight rarer than they were back in NC.

    2. Slothful says:

      Either way, the reason that there are no doorknobs in Half Life is because if there were, then you wouldn’t be able to notice the “opening” or “locked” animations.

  9. Chris B Chikin says:

    Rutskarn, I’m so sink of your puns!

    1. Nick says:

      Saw the draining one coming. But then I knew you were going to plug away at it, so they went ahead and tapped the situation

      1. Hush says:

        Bah. You guys need to clean up your act. These puns are all washed-up.

        1. klasbo says:

          We’re just starting to tap into this well of puns.

          1. webrunner says:

            With our luck the whole comment thread will be clogged with them.

            1. Imposing Snail says:

              I can feel it plunging already.

              1. Eltanin says:

                +snort+ Faucet.

                I actually lol’d at that one.

                1. MichaelG says:

                  That area of the game *does* have everything but the kitchen sink.

                  1. kana says:

                    Finding it would just be a time sink anyways.

  10. The Hokey Pokey says:

    16:30: I played this on the 360 the first time (I didn’t have a gaming pc) and when I pressed that button nothing happened because some physics object had merged with the door. I wandered around for about 30 minutes trying to figure out where I was supposed to go. I finally looked up a faq and figured out what was supposed to happen and reloaded the last save. I pressed the button and experienced the same glitch. I had to start a new game at Nova Prospekt to get through.

    It might just be my Silent Hill training but I find the best way to kill the antlion boss is to circle strafe with the crowbar. If you are close enough the antlion will only ever use its headbutt attack. It’s amusing to watch it repeatedly headbutt the air beside you and then just crumple ineffectually.

  11. Michael says:

    Well played, Rutskarn, well played. That last pun had me laughing like a drain. You really plumbed the depths of bad punning there.

    Incidentally, when I start my own LP series I’ll be basin my style on Spoiler Warning.

    1. Laughing like a drain? What does that even mean?

      1. webrunner says:

        Laughing so hard that water spirals down your mouth until someone plugs it up with a rubber stopper.

        1. Rutskarn says:


  12. Hitch says:

    Guys, you don’t need to stop talking just because there’s a loading screen. We can appreciate the loading screen effect even without absolute silence on the part of the commentators.

  13. Eärlindor says:

    The management would like to apologize for the puns in this episode. However, management is precluded from doing so by the fact that the management is not in the least bit sorry.

    Thank you for your patronage,
    The Spoiler Warning Team

    You guys suck.

    1. Tjtheman5 says:

      Correction, I believe you meant “You guys ROCK” it’s an easy mistake to make.

      1. silver Harloe says:

        Actually, I think he means they SUNK to a new low there.

  14. Methermeneus says:

    So, Shamus, just how many “favorite parts” do you have in this game? First Ravenholm, now Nova Prospekt. What’s next, the Citadel? Aperture Labs? (‘Cause that’s my favorite part of the Half Life universe.) In HL, it seems that you love everything but the kitchen sink. (And, no, that wasn’t meant to be a pun. I try not to faucet like that.)

    1. Ragnar says:

      Unfortunately they skipped over part of my favourite part of the game. I just love using the Antlions against the Combine. Especially outside.

    2. Shamus says:

      Ravenholm is Josh’s favorite, not mine. (But I like it, obviously.)

    3. Irridium says:

      My favorite’s the opening.

      Where you just walk around, and soak everything in.

      It’s amazing.

      1. swenson says:

        That is pretty excellent. HL2 was one of the first “real” “grown-up” videogames I ever played, and I have to say, nothing else I have ever played has ever been able to measure up to that intro. Many have had good intros, but HL2 has never been beaten yet.

  15. klasbo says:

    I can’t think of a single area in HL2 that is actually hard. All the areas have some way that make the solvable with minimal effort if you just apply the correct technique.

    The double gunship fight is easy if you hide around the containers at 2:55 and 3:02, and use the antlions to take out the guards on the balcony. The gunships can’t hit you, the guards can’t hit you, and you have infinite rockets. It just requires the correct timing on when to move out, aka your ability to use your ears to hear where the gunships are.

    Inside Nova Prospekt, the antlions are both useful and extremely annoying. Don’t try to rush into an area where there are enemies, because the antlions will block your retreat path. Just camp it out; there’s no time limit.

    Basically: to make your life easier, focus on taking as little damage as possible, instead of doing as much damage as possible. This is clearly not compatible with Josh’s playstyle.

    1. Daemian Lucifer says:

      Strider battles near the finale are hard.At least on hard they are because those machine guns shred you to pieces.And infinite soldiers dont make it any easier.

      1. klasbo says:

        The strider battles I remember are:
        Follow Freeman!: Outside the Overwatch Nexus
        Inside a blown-out concrete building with a lot of flying flash-bang-esque critters
        Inside a heavily fortified destroyed building, right before dog lets you in to the citadel
        Inside the Citadel (which you defeat with the energy spheres)
        End of Ep 1: Train station
        End of Ep 2: strider + hunter battle

        The hardest one is the one at the end of Ep 2, because you have little to no cover. Then again, you have a car and can run over the hunters, then magnusson the strider without any problems. At least that’s how I did it. And yes, this was on hard difficulty. I haven’t actually done Ep 2 on any other difficulty setting than hard..

        1. Daemian Lucifer says:

          I had little problem with the episode 2 one because,like youve said,you can just run over the hunters.And,unlike rockets,you only need one magnusson to bring the beasts down.

          The hardest one for me was near the nexus,the third one youve mentioned,because you have to run all around this complex to find the rockets,while constantly getting shot at by both striders and the combine.Though I did end that one with much more health than the previous two(which Ive just rushed through),it still took me much more time to slog from cover to cover,waiting for the perfect opportunity to rush out,hence I think of it as a more difficult one.

          1. swenson says:

            There’s an infinite ammo crate across the street, near where you first approached the Nexus. Took me forever to realize that!

            1. klasbo says:

              This is the trick. Sprint from cover to cover while avoiding the big blasts from the striders, and then you have perfect cover and infinite rockets. There’s also a large amount of health packs all around the place, I think there’s 3 large packs in the centre bunker-esque room, 4 small packs drainage pipe that leads to the main road, and 3 large packs in an overturned container on the main road.

          2. decius says:

            If you can run over the hunters, or take them out with a log, then the strider is easy. If you can’t, then the resistance soldiers with rocket launchers at the base can help quite a bit. It helps take the DIAS aspect out, while the many intermediate buildings and resistance soldiers give plenty of “You are failing” to the scene.

  16. River says:

    I have a sink-ing feeling that all the comments on this episode are gonna be made of terrible puns

    1. webrunner says:

      water the chances of that happening?

      1. Scott (Duneyrr) says:

        I am pretty sure he’s basin his comment on previous experiences.

  17. Destrustor says:

    The guards in the towers outside are fairly easy to take out with the crossbow if you stay in the sewers and use the conveniently-placed grates. Only one tower can detect you at any given time down there, even if you use the very loud magnum.

  18. scott says:

    I gotta say (not to knock your music picks) but i enjoy these cold opens with the game audio over the logo over the series logo of the half life episodes over the full themes of other series.

    1. Viktor says:

      I usually like the openings. The only one I dislike is AC2, and that’s more because it’s a full minute long than because of any quality issues. The opening here, meanwhile, seems too lightweight. I love the captions too much to enjoy an opening without them.

  19. Slothful says:

    It’s really nice from a stylistic standpoint that this game takes place in eastern europe, but there’s still the question of how all these Black Mesa employees managed to move all the way to the other side of the world.

    1. webrunner says:


      But, it’s across the oc-


      1. Eruanno says:

        Flying trains, okay?

        1. JPH says:

          I’ll buy that. I mean, Shamus did manage to stick a train in the middle of the road, and drive through it with another train.

          Clearly anything is possible when trains are in the equation.

          1. tengokujin says:

            What do you like best about trains? Mine is trains.

            1. Irridium says:

              Trains, next to dinosaurs, were my favoritist things in the whole damn world to me when I was younger.

              They still are today.

              Trains and dinosaurs. Best things ever.

      2. Nick Pitino says:

        Well, we see in the game the oceans seem to be a lot lower.

        If it’s low enough that would reform the land bridge across Bering Strait.

  20. Cerapa says:

    Havent watched it till the end, but…doorknobs.

    I dont believe I have ever seen a doorknob. I am serious, ever. If I saw one it would feel completely unnatural to open the door.

    1. Milos says:

      I don’t think I’ve ever operated a doorknob in my life and I only know of one house in the general area that has one on the front door. That’s just not how we roll around here.

      1. Tse says:

        I’m in Eastern Europe and we have both, though door knobs are less common.Door levers just feel more practical.

        1. Daemian Lucifer says:

          Indeed.I dont see how youd be able to open a door knob with your feet or elbows.It can be crucial at times.

          1. noahpocalypse says:

            If you use both elbows you can do it, or if you’re barefoot and can hold your leg up that high for several seconds. You can even do it with shoes on if you’re really flexible or it’s an oval doorknob.

            1. klasbo says:

              Much easier to just press “E”..

              1. Daemian Lucifer says:

                Thats the winning comment.*claps*

        2. Chris says:

          I’m in the UK, and we also have both. Though in my experience, doorknobs are restricted to doors that don’t have a catch (or else have a Yale-lock as a catch).

          They largely don’t even twist. It’s just something to hold on to when closing the door (heck: my last house didn’t even have that. The “doors” in HL2 you can’t open that lack door-opening devices of any kind? Yeah, my house looked like that. Had to grab the letterbox to close it. Opened by sticking a key in the lock and pushing).

    2. Jordan says:

      As a Brit I find your lack of doorknobs, radiators, and washing lines highly disturbing. You do have kettles, right? O_o

      1. Scott (Duneyrr) says:

        What’s a kettle? Is that like a pot? If so, yes.

        1. Axion says:

          Yeah, but kettles are black.

      2. Cerapa says:

        Who said we dont have radiators? Plenty of radiators in here.
        We have washing lines too.
        Hell, we even have kettles.

        Assumptions FTW.

        1. Shatterer says:

          So about this radiator thing… how do people keep their house warm without using radiators? I don’t think I’ve ever seen a house without a radiator.

          1. Chuck says:

            Ventilation system using heating ducts and vents in the walls and floor.

            Generally their not large enough to crawl through, at least not the ones in your home.

            1. decius says:

              Generally the ductwork in major buildings, even where it is large enough to crawl through (worm-style, not crouch-style), it has sheet metal screws protruding through it, holding sections together. The supports for it may or may not be able to handle the additional dynamic load. Also, fiberglass insulation all around, so keep some soapy water, eyedrops and tissues in separate sealed metal containers- once you get out, wash your hands, then use your newly cleaned hands to clean the glass fibers out of your eyes. The assumed protection of the HEV suit should also work, since I assume that it has some magical way of protecting the eyes and mucous membranes from the airborne hazards associated with vaporizing crystals from another dimension.

            2. Zukhramm says:

              Sounds inefficient. Water’s got to be more useful for transporting heat around your house than air could ever be.

              1. Peter H. Coffin says:

                Air doesn’t leak and ruin the rug. Same ductwork can also provide for cooling. Experiments with cooling via radiator end up with results similar to leaking except inevitably and without the requirement of actual leak.

                1. Chuck says:

                  And radiators make creepy noises.

                  That may be a personal opinion, though.

  21. Daemian Lucifer says:

    I love this level.Too bad that youve skipped the intro,since its quite fun to lead your endless minion army against the combine in the open.Still,they are fun to use even inside,though they can be a bit annoying at times.Also,I think this is the only level where you get combine,headcrabs and antlions in one place.

  22. Don’t know what you’re talking about Ruts. I’ve been life long in the Central Valley and it’s knobs on every door of all the houses I’ve ever lived in.

  23. noahpocalypse says:

    Wow. I played this level so, so wrong. At the beginning I figured “oh sweet! a stealth section!” and spent forever and many loads trying to stealth past the towers. After being discovered (inevitably) I wasted more than half of my ammo trying to kill the guards on top. Not once did I even consider throwing the pods up there, though in my defense, how the heck can they jump that high? I would feel ridiculous even trying that. So, instead of rushing the staircase, shotgun in hand, I killed every guard before even heading up the stairs in the plaza.

    Later on, when you encountered the boss, I ran around for 20 minutes, frantically trying to find some sort of environmental weapon to kill it with. I was occasionally shooting it as I ran, and I ended up killing it with luck rather than skill. Skill to survive that long, but it wasn’t very smart to not try, I don’t know, shooting it. It’s not like this is a first-person shooter or anything.

    The room right after you regain your antlion minions took me even longer. I didn’t think I would live long with three turrets after me, so I tried to bomb the room with the pods. I spent half an hour watching my antlions fall dead halfway between me and my enemies. I eventually used them as a distraction and approached the way you’re supposed to, through that alcove. I really started trying to play it safe that mission, didn’t I?

    Also: I sink puns are stupid. They drain your intelligence. Water you going to do then? Don’t be a washed-out liberal arts major. Dig deep into your well of intelligence and unclog that waste. Create a clear flow; don’t let anything leak. Then flush my remaining dignity down the pipes and burn me at the stake because boy, do I deserve it. Hard work does mean I get steak, right?

    1. Daemian Lucifer says:

      Another sink pun?Man,those are really flooding the comments.

      1. noahpocalypse says:

        Oh, put a cork in it.

    2. Caffiene says:

      “how the heck can they jump that high?”

      They have insect-style wings under the carapace on their back.

      1. Sumanai says:

        What I wonder is how no-one yelled “fly my pretties” at any point.

  24. Ateius says:

    So, for me the creepiest thing about Nova Prospekt was how empty it was. Not just for the general isolation-horror element, but because you’re specifically told Nova Prospekt is where they’ve been sending all their prisoners, all the dissidents, everyone in and around City 17 that they round up for whatever reason. They all go to Nova Prospekt, so Nova Prospekt should be teeming with people.

    But it isn’t.

    And, brilliantly, rather than making you watch a cutscene of them doing something horrific to an assembly-line of prisoners, you instead can piece together on your own why no-one is there. What they’ve said about the creation of the Combine soldiers, and the creepy gaunt metal-plate-eyed dudes you see from a distance here and there… then you can understand why there’s no-one in the cells.

    1. swenson says:

      And then, on one of the monitors, you finally see what a Combine looks like under their masks…

      Still creeps me out to look at that one.

  25. fdsafdsafsadfasdfasdf says:

    Oh geez, I forgot that HL2 turrets use the same sounds as the Portal ones. And that their startup sound is the first few notes of that song that the easter egg choir in P2 sings. Which keeps making me think my cell phone is ringing.

    1. Lord Nyax says:

      Is it just me, or is there an orange aperture science logo on the turrents?

      1. X2-Eliah says:

        Turrets. TURRETS. Not TurreNts. Gah.

        Sorry, but that particular single typo I’ve seen used so much that it’s like a red waving cloth to me…

        TURRETS damnit.

        1. Daemian Lucifer says:

          Why no love for turrents?

          1. aquagosh says:

            That’s probably the most awesome thing I’m going to see all day. Well done.

        2. Lord Nyax says:

          Whoops. My bad.

          ….but is it the aperture science logo? It’s starting to drive me insane.

  26. Ravens Cry says:

    I rather liked the Heat-sink pun, but the rest left me drained. Surely there is other sources untapped? Other streams to follow? All the good will from that first pun was just washed away, sinking like a stone.

  27. Fishminer says:

    Was I the only one who was really protective of his insectoid followers? I always feel really bad when one of them dies needlessly, hell I even will take a bit of damage to make sure they aren’t pointlessly throwing themselves into a hail of gunfire. Watching Josh use them like a soviet general was just a smidgen annoying. I mean he doesn’t seem to treat his Total War troops quite so badly.

    1. Daemian Lucifer says:

      Thats because troops in total war cost precious resources.These are free minions.And I treat them even worse,as I dont even stick my nose out of the cover before the antlions clear out everything.

  28. Helgi H says:

    Oh man that sink pun made me laugh out loud.

  29. Johan says:

    Aw man, I really liked Sandtraps when I played (the part you sort of skipped), and couldn’t really stand Nova Prospekt.

    Well, there was one part I really thought was a nice touch, when you get to see what’s happening in the rest of the areas on the screens. I liked that.

  30. Gilf says:

    Watching this with closed captions has me bursting into laughter far more than it really should.

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