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This article is about the location. For the Half-Life 2 chapter, see Highway 17 (Chapter).
The Coast is a Wasteland region located along Highway 17.
As of the events of Half-Life 2, parts of the Coast have recently come under Combine control forcing many of the rebels along the coast into more condensed pockets of resistance. After leaving the Zombie-infested town of Ravenholm, Gordon Freeman enters the region and embarks on a long journey along the coastline to Nova Prospekt, meeting Alyx Vance there. This section is one of the longest in the game, and stretches for several in-game miles.
The Coast is largely seen as a barren wasteland being picked to the bone by Combine technology after the Seven Hour War. The Coast showcases the darker side of the Combine's rule over Earth including the depletion of natural resources and brutal Combine raids on resistance outposts. Much of the infrastructure along the coastline (such as roads, bridges and tunnels) has decayed or been severely damaged over the course of the Combine's rule on Earth. Many areas along the coast have also been colonized by Antlions, and both the Resistance and Combine have had complications fending them off. Much of the coast had been abandoned because of the swarming Antlions, and both sides use Thumpers to restrict Antlion movement and create safe zones. Some portions of the coast have also become infested with zombies and other Xen wildlife, due in part to their use by the Combine as biological weapons against Resistance outposts. A prominent highway - Highway 17, and several Resistance bases are located along the coast.
Depletion of resources
It is more apparent along the coast than anywhere else in City 17 that the Combine are indeed sucking up the natural resources of the planet. The ocean can be seen to be "dried up" and the waterline is much lower than it was; this is evident by the fact that the piers located near the start of the coast are some considerable distance from the ocean itself. Much of the coastline can be seen littered with wrecked boats and ships resting on what was previously seabed. Many of the docks and piers on the coast are no longer standing in water. Indications of the previous sea level can be judged by moss which had previously gathered on harbor structures at the edge of the water, but which now lie several feet above the water level.
Highway 17 is one of the many coastal highways that connect City 17 to neighboring regions. As of the events of Half-Life 2, the highway is no longer maintained and is suffering from severe disrepair, with collapsed bridges, landslides, and scores of rusty, abandoned car bodies littered across the extent of the highway. Highway 17 runs nearly all the way to Nova Prospekt, and extends over several kilometers. Many small coastal villages are located along Highway 17, several of which are inhabited by Resistance members. By the time Gordon passes through the area, some of the former resistance bases are under Combine control, who are using them as bases or road checkpoints along Highway 17. Several road tunnels also exist along Highway 17 although most of them have been completely abandoned and some are infested with zombies and other extraterrestrial Xen wildlife.
The Resistance held a relatively small but powerful position along the Coast, but they were continually harassed by Combine raids and airborne assaults, which were later stepped up as Gordon Freeman passed through the area. By the time Gordon arrived, many of the smaller resistance bases and outposts located along the Coast had been destroyed or taken over by Combine forces and left abandoned. Because of this, the remaining resistance forces gradually condensed into larger but less frequently encountered pockets of rebels at key bases such as New Little Odessa and Lighthouse Point. After the events at Nova Prospekt, it is unknown whether any Resistance bases along the coast still exist or if they have been taken over by the Combine.
Combine presence on the coast
Prior to Gordon's arrival in the region, the coast was one of the few areas where the Resistance could face Combine forces openly. This was quite possibly due to the region's isolation and also that the Combine didn't see the Rebel forces there as a threat significant enough to make it worth deploying the forces needed to quell them. Nevertheless, around the time Gordon arrived in City 17, the Combine were making significant inroads into the region, raiding some of the isolated outposts and executing the occupants, as well as setting up road checkpoints to restrict rebel movement.
Shorepoint Base, located at Pier 87, is the main resistance base located along the coastal regions of Ravenholm. Located at the very beginning of Highway 17 and the Coast itself, Shorepoint acts very much like a base of operations for all resistance activities along the Coast. It is run by a veteran resistance member named Leon. As seen in the Highway 17 chapter, Shorepoint has, in its possession, a one-seater Scout Car, also called the "Buggy", which Gordon Freeman uses to navigate the increasingly harsh terrain and escape the many Antlions and Combine outposts along the coast. The Combine attempted a raid on Shorepoint shortly before Gordon Freeman's arrival, but were driven off. Shorepoint is connected to Ravenholm via a railway line and a mine shaft.
New Little Odessa
New Little Odessa is one of two main resistance bases situated on the coast. Commanded by, Colonel Odessa Cubbage, New Little Odessa came under attack by a Combine Gunship during the events of Half-Life 2, which Gordon Freeman helped fend off with a laser-guided RPG. Prior to reaching New Little Odessa, the player can spot the base through a pair of Combine binoculars across the bay; this gives the player the opportunity to see Colonel Cubbage speaking to the G-Man in the balcony of a building. The layout of New Little Odessa is somewhat unintended for any airborne combat. Its ultimate fate after the events of Half-Life 2 is unknown. The name of the base is most likely derived from the fact that it is led and was possibly founded by Odessa Cubbage. Most rebels refer to it as N.L.O.
Dock 137 is a small warehouse district and pier situated where the ocean and a dried up inlet meet. This area was used as a Resistance base for a time, but was occupied by the Combine prior to Gordon's arrival.
The Petroleum Station is a former gas station used as bridge checkpoint by the Combine. There Gordon disables a Force Field powered by an APC by throwing the latter into the sea.
Bridge Point is an outpost consisting of a three story house and several outbuildings situated next to a prominent rail bridge. It was assaulted and occupied by the Combine some time before Gordon's arrival, and any Resistance members who may have been stationed there are presumed dead or captured.
Lighthouse Point is one of the last resistance bases that Gordon Freeman encounters on his way to Nova Prospekt, and serves as Highway 17's ending point (and the end of the road for Gordon's Scout Car). Lighthouse Point also came under heavy Combine attack, and was overwhelmed. Lighthouse Point is a better defensive position than New Little Odessa. The lighthouse itself offers anyone within the vicinity means of cover and advantages when it comes to protection, defense and offense. The top of the lighthouse is suited for combat situations in which the Combine would raid the base using synths including dropships and gunships. The name of the base is derived from the signature Lighthouse.
During Freeman's arrival at Lighthouse Point, the base was under attack after Freeman parked his Scout Car. The player defends the base against dropships until a Combine gunship arrives. Then the player fires rockets at it from the top of the lighthouse until it is destroyed. The player then escapes the base by jumping on the cliffs through a secret exit located at the bottom of the lighthouse. The lighthouse is most likely overrun after that because the player could see a Dropship flying away with the Scout Car and Combine soldiers looking down from the cliffs for the player.
The final but unnamed resistance base, located within canyons and caves, is situated a short distance from Lighthouse Point, but requires that Gordon Freeman transverse on Antlion populated grounds. The base houses several resistance fighters, as well as many more Vortigaunts. One particular Vortigaunt goes on to lead Gordon through the base and into a cave, in which Gordon is taught how to use the Antlion Pheropod to tame and command Antlions. Upon completion of training, Gordon is led out into a beach that connects to Nova Prospekt. The base is protected by a single gunner at its entrance via the use of a mounted pulse gun.
The main perimeter of Nova Prospekt prison is also located along the Coast, although right at the edge of it. This portion of the Coast is littered with dozens of Combine Bunkers which act as defensive outposts in the event that someone should attempt to infiltrate the facility. Some of these bunkers are connected to older, pre-Combine fortifications, recognizable by their concrete construction. Large Thumpers are also situated along the edges to the sea in the attempts to help fend off Antlions from breaking into the facility. Despite the amount of defense located near Nova Prospekt, Gordon Freeman was able to infiltrate the facility, with the help of tamed Antlions. Also, Gordon finds a zombie and several corpses in a small camp at the foot of a cliff, and a fast zombie in a pipe, suggesting that some humans had hidden there. During Freeman's time in the facility it is likely that the defenses surrounding Nova Prospekt, including the bunkers and thumpers had possibly been deactivated as Antlions had breached the facility. The entire facility was most likely destroyed as the Combine teleporter exploded as mentioned by Doctor Kleiner saying "Indeed it did, and the repercussions were felt far and wide."
Behind the scenes
- The landscapes of the Coast and most of the original Wasteland designs are similar and the area was generally to be much more desolated than in the retail version. At one point, the Wasteland was to be a vast scrapland full of junked military machines. Another version was a completely dried seafloor, with the ocean draining away into a vast teleport "drain" and the seafloor full of beached ships and whale bones, recalling the real world Aral Sea (since the Area Sea is set in Central Asia, near Eastern Europe, it is likely the developers drew inspiration from it). While the oceans are still abnormally low in the retail version, there is no in-game explanation for it.
- The Air Exchange was to be part of the Coast levels. It was to replace the air by noxious, murky gases. This is where the signal for the City 17 uprising was given from, after Gordon Freeman had destroyed its main reactor.
- The Coast was originally to first appear at the start of the game, when Gordon was to start the game on the Borealis, en route to City 17. At the end of the journey, he was likely to first set foot on a dock and first see the Citadel, in a map similar to "
proto_docks.vmf", a Coast-like map.
List of appearances
Half-Life Wiki has more images related to The Coast.
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