The Combine Factories, also nicknamed "garage" or "industrial", is a City 17 area cut early in the development of Half-Life 2. It was to be seen during the very first chapter, between the City 17 Trainstation and its plaza. It was to be accessed from the back of the trainstation, although Gordon was likely to first pass through the area while arriving to City 17 on its train.
A quite noisy and sinister area, it was to show the player human servitude under the Combine. Workers of these factories would have been consisted of both adult and child Citizens, as well as Stalkers and Vortigaunts. They were to be closely watched by Metrocops and Combots.
The map "
e3_industrial", cut from E3 2003, depicts most of the Combine Factories in an incomplete stage. Other maps include maps starting with "
d1_garage" (1 and 2) and "
c17_01" (not to be confused with the E3 map
e3_c17_01), coming in around 15 versions, some featuring the nearby trainstation.
The area was to contain several specific sections illustrated in Raising the Bar or found in the several different WC mappack maps, in which a specific journey was to be made by the player, before reaching the front of the City 17 Trainstation main facade through a tunnel closed in the most recent maps. The areas include:
Railway and streets
- An elevated railway for the (brush) Razor Train was to cross the area, transporting Citizens from the Wasteland or other locations to the nearby City 17 Trainstation. Big pipes, catwalks, electric cables, huge chimneys pouring smoke were to be seen everywhere.
- Door Towers were to be used by Metrocops to open Combine Barricades while APCs and School Buses were traveling around the area.
- In early maps flying APCs ("shuttles") are also seen circling the area.
Underground / sewers
Sewers and underground rooms can be accessed through a large webbed trapdoor located on street level, then through a ladder that breaks before the player reaches the ground, forcing them to follow a specific path. After journeying through a small sewer where Xen Light Stalks and a scripted sequence involving Rebel Vortigaunts were to be seen, the player was to reach underground rooms having undergone a fire (they are also partially used in Vertigo). A small portion of the ceiling of one of the rooms was to have collapsed, allowing the rain to pour in. After several dimly lit corridors, the player was to reach the street again.
The Cremator Factory
In this factory (also named "Children Factory"), children were to prepare Cremator heads while being watched by a single Metrocop. It was to be seen from the street, then from above on a catwalk, but never directly accessed. The rest of the process of the preparation of Cremator units was apparently not to be seen.
The Stenographer's Chasm
- This huge room with a glass roof and it walls covered with white tiles (like one of the early Citadels) and City 17 posters was an attempt to create a nightmarish environment, but it proved bereft of gameplay. The place was to be filled with Citizens wearing light blue outfits and typing on stenographs.
- It was not to be directly accessed, and only glimpsed from the outside. Corridors run beside it, and one includes stairs with machinery that pierced the wall under them.
- In the playable Half-Life 2 Beta files, only the textures of the Stenographer's Chasm worker model can be found. Added to the light blue outfit, it was to have the head of the retail "male cheaple" Citizen model. A sheet of paper was also to be used, as well as a desk model, also missing.
- More recent versions contain other types of machines mostly involving pistons, as well as working children and Metrocops.
- Early concept art images for the City 17 Trainstation seem to be based on variations of that area.
The Stalker building
Stalkers were to be seen welding a container using their laser tools in a building located at the end of the small linear journey.
The Vortigaunt building
A Vortigaunt was also to be seen working under a room filled with generator-like green devices near the Stalker building.
A standard garage featuring an APC with its engine removed and a small operable crane were to be located opposite of the Vortigaunt building, near the back of the City 17 Trainstation. Odell's model was to be found there, used as a placeholder as it is often in the WC mappack. The building was also to include several props such as the early brush vending machine.
Other unidentified factories were also to heavily rely on children.
- When the Cremator was cut and the team decided that human reproduction had been disabled by the Suppression Field, the presence of children, as well as their factory, are rendered irrelevant. The whole area then disappeared when the journey to Kleiner's Lab was heavily shortened and the general atmosphere of the game changed.
- The factory themes were recycled in the Citadel chapters and the slavery work was kept for the Stalkers only.
- Some elements of this section are reused in Half-Life: Alyx:
List of appearances
City 17 Trainstation
|Half-Life 2 original storyline||Succeeded by|