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In City 17, Striders slaughtered large numbers of Resistance fighters and Citizens, despite the Resistance's use of RPGs, the most powerful weapon at their disposal. Doctor Magnusson struggled to develop a successful launching system for the rugby ball shaped Device, as the weapon needed to be attached to the towering Striders' body to be effective; however, this problem was immediately solved with the arrival of Gordon Freeman and his Gravity Gun to White Forest. According to Magnusson, the device's function is to cause Striders to destroy themselves.
Due to the limited available resources during the Combine's rulership over the Earth, the device had to use simple and conventional materials and technology found in the wreckage of pre-Resonance Cascade society; however, it is likely that the electronics inside the Device are stripped from Combine machinery. The Device uses sharpened nails spaced around its circumference to puncture and attach to the carapace of a Strider.
The Magnusson Device can be taken from small portable Teleporters found around White Forest, which are connected to deployment units within White Forest's missile base. The Teleporter will send another one when the previous one has been taken away by the player. The Magnusson Device can be attached on the Muscle Car's back thanks to MIRT's mechanic skill who adds a pocket behind it.
- The Magnusson Device is very effective at destroying Striders; however, the user must have precise aim with the Gravity Gun in order to attach it, which can be easily achieved by running up close to the Strider from behind.
- During the large assault on White Forest, Striders are always accompanied by pairs of Hunters, who will fire upon a readied Magnusson Device as soon as possible. Therefore, the player should destroy all nearby Hunters before attempting to launch the Magnusson Device at a Strider. Because ammunition at the White Forest base is limited, one method of dealing with the Hunters is to run them over with the Muscle Car ("Hit and Run" Achievement), which has the added bonus of protecting Gordon from the bulk of the Hunters' fire. If necessary, look away from the Hunters and fire at the Strider quickly and shoot at it to prevent its destruction.
- The Muscle Car also has a pocket installed on its rear bumper for storing a single Magnusson Device, which can be useful for quickly transporting a Device to where it needs to be used.
- After the device is attached on a Strider, any weapon can be used to hit it (preferably the Shotgun or MP7 if at longer ranges, due to its cone of fire increasing chances of hitting, and MP7 or Pistol at close range), exploding the device violently and completely shredding the Strider.
- Magnusson Devices can also be used to damage Hunters, but strategically, this is an inefficient use since it does only 150 damage, which is only 10 more than 2/3rds of its health.
Behind the scenes
- As seen in the Half-Life 2 Beta source code, the Hopwire Grenade was originally to be the weapon of choice against the Striders, replaced in Episode Two by the Magnusson Device. This is confirmed in the Episode Two commentary, in which Valve's Joshua Weier states that the Magnusson Device "started life as a Half-Life 2 weapon called the Hopwire".
- Originally, Gordon Freeman was to be able to throw a smaller Magnusson Device with his hands like a regular grenade, whose probable entity was to be "weapon_magnade".
- According to Richard Lord, the diagram explaining how to use the Magnusson Device against Striders went through several iterations, from highly stylized, to absurd, until they came to something the team believed they could ship.
- A cut weapon, the Sticky Launcher, bears similarities to the Magnusson Device.
- The Magnusson Device bears a striking resemblance to "The Gadget", the first nuclear weapon designed under the Manhattan Project.
- The Magnusson Device does not have its own gib models, and instead uses the Manhack's gibs.
- The equations featured on the instruction whiteboard are based on potential and kinetic energy. Interestingly, in addition to gravitational potential energy, the equation for spring potential energy is included, despite no spring involved in the operation of the device.
- However Magnusson does point out that he had trouble thinking of a launcher device before mentioning Gordon Freeman's Gravity Gun saying it "solves that little problem".
List of appearances
- Half-Life 2: Episode Two (First appearance)