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Throughout the development of Half-Life 2, its arsenal of weaponry varied considerably, and it contained several different weapons than when the game was first made public, weapons that were later cut before the final release.
It has been suggested that the bulk of the weapons were cut due to the fact that they were too similar to one another, as the AR1 served a very similar role to the AR2, the SMG2 the same to the SMG1, the Crowbar to the Ice Axe and Stun Baton, and so-on so-forth and that it would not be very believable to hold more than 25 weapons, even though a limited weapons system was implemented at some point, having the player throw a weapon before picking up a new one.
List of cut weapons
The AK-47/AR1 appears in the leak. It has no animations, but can fire in semi-automatic mode, three or five-burst mode, or full-auto mode. It also had a view model in an updated patched beta but the reload and fire animations are still missing.
The Binoculars were not technically a weapon. It could zoom in to five times normal sight, however the player could not fire weapons while using it. They were integrated into the suit as the "zoom" feature, and the crossbow's scope. Also, if searching some of the binocular's sound files, it can be found that it was supposed to play some kind of music when using or zooming it.
The Brickbat is an unfinished "weapon" that was to allow the player to use a small selection of props as weapons, by picking them up on the ground and throwing them. They included at least four elements: rocks, Cremator heads, Headcrabs (mirroring the Snark from Half-Life) and beer bottles. Its entity name, weapon_brickbat, can still be found in Hammer, though it is invalid. It was probably removed for redundancy reasons, the Gravity Gun allowing the player to pick up and throw almost everything they can find.
In the playable Beta, the Molotov cocktail appears as a Headcrab when spawned but is a regular Molotov when thrown.
Combine Guard Gun
Type: Hand-held warp-cannon
Ammo: Dark energy plasma
Intended to be a weapon used by Combine Guards and then to be acquired by the player. It resembles the warp-cannon of a Strider but scaled down to be carried by human-sized units. It can kill anything in one shot.
Dropped along with Combine Guard concept, although its firing sound was re-used for Portal.
Type: Not a weapon
The fire extinguisher was used to extinguish fire that could stand in the way of the player and help him progress into the level. It was used in the Borealis, but was removed because it was useless in any other situation, and caused inconsistencies when used in later levels.
Magazine capacity: 1
The flare gun is a weapon that shoots flares that are typically used as a distress signal as well as other signaling purposes.
The weapon was to be found on the Borealis. Due to general ineffectiveness when using this weapon it was cut from HL2 in early development. The gun still exists in Half-Life 2 but cannot be acquired, this is evidenced by Overwatch soldiers on the Coast using one to summon a gunship, to light an area after deactivating the ceiling lights during the Entanglement chapter and a Civil Protection officer firing one when the player assaults a power generator during the rebellion.
- In Half-Life 2: Episode One disposable flares were introduced, that Gordon Freeman could use with his Gravity Gun, mocking the operation of the flare gun.
- The Flare Gun concept was reused in Team Fortress 2 as an unlockable weapon of the Pyro and it is used to ignite enemies from long range.
- SMOD adds a script for the flaregun.
- CPs will fire flareguns upon seeing the player in certain areas. They are invariably out of the player's reach to prevent him from finding it.
- Synergy used to have this weapon before the game had bits of content stripped for the Steam release.
Type: Submachine gun
Ammo: 9mm Para
Magazine: 30 rounds
H&K MP5K is a compact version of German-designed SMG, the H&K MP5, with a shorter barrel making it even more maneuverable and more easily concealed.
The MP5K was apparently set to be HL2's primary SMG, and at some point during the development the MP5K and its replacement, the H&K MP7, existed side-by-side, but in the end it was cut in favor of the more modern MP7. Synergy has a fully working version of the weapon.
The HMG1 (Heavy Machine Gun) is the only gun that uses Heavy rounds. It has horrid accuracy and can be switched to fire three round bursts. Strangely, each burst will only eat up one unit of ammo. Even in burst-fire mode, it will continue to fire as long as the player holds down the fire key. In addition, the weapon is very powerful, being able to kill a Combine soldier in only a couple of shots.
The HMG1 is based on the rare H&K GR9 machine gun. There is an older HMG1 model named "v_hkgr9.mdl", which is a much less detailed version of the HMG model.
The 1 in the HMG1's name hints that there was supposed to be another HMG, but there is no sign of it in the Beta.
In the final version, the Combine Soldier still has a firing animation for the HMG1, but is unused.
Type: Tripmine (?)
Ammo: Explosives (?)
Judging from its name, the Hopwire may have been the functional equivalent of the Laser Tripmine based on the M86 Pursuit Deterrent Munition. Such a weapon, once placed, leaps up into the air after several seconds and shoots out several wires which, when tripped, cause the grenade and all its tethers to detonate.
Be aware that the Hopwire is extremely unstable in the leak. If one of the wires touches a surface in the wrong way, the game will crash.
The hopwire grenade can be found in Half-Life 2: Episode One as a hidden weapon, dubbed the "blackhole hopwire". It creates a small black hole that disintegrates everything next to it, including the player. The Hopwire concept continued to be improved, and became the Magnusson Device in Episode Two.
An ice axe is a multi-purpose mountaineering tool carried by practically every mountaineer.
The Ice Axe was probably dropped along with the Borealis concept, and also because it was identical in operation (in-game terms) with Gordon's trademark crowbar.
Ammo: Unknown flammable and/or corrosive substance
The Immolator was a weapon intended to be used by Combine Cremators and then acquired by the player. It functioned similarly to the human-designed flamethrower except that the burning liquid also possessed corrosive properties, allowing it to nearly "eat away" organic matter. It was intended to be highly effective against unprotected organic enemies, such as antlions or zombies, at short range.
Dropped along with the Combine Cremators concept; however the effects of the weapon were converted for the effects made by thrown objects of Combine soldiers in the laser-like vertical beams in the Citadel. The player also finds burnt corpses of rebels throughout the game, suggesting that Cremators found them.
Type: Projectile launcher (?)
What little is known about the Incendiary rifle (or Irifle) can be garnered from its appearance in the pre-release "Tunnels" gameplay video, where it is seen used against some Civil Protection officers. The weapon looks almost identical to the final version Pulse Rifle, but fires incendiary bolts which ignite their target in flames. Its magazine of 5 made it much more useful than the Flare Gun. It also had multiple skins throughout the leak (it had 2 skins) and also in a patched version of the leak had a clip reload animation, however it crashed every time the animation was played. Perhaps due to the weapon's seemingly limited tactical use, the weapon was dropped and it's model repurposed as the AR2 Pulse Rifle.
The Molotov cocktail is a self-made incendiary grenade. It includes a glass 0.5-0.7 liter bottle, gasoline, diesel fuel and motor oil mixture filling the bottle, as well as an old piece of cloth serving as cover and fuse. To arm the weapon, the cloth is ignited and the bottle thrown at the enemy, breaking upon contact and saturating its immediate surroundings with the flaming liquid.
The effects of the weapon are very similar to grenades, therefore it is cut.
- The Molotov cocktail idea was reused for Left 4 Dead as an optional secondary weapon of the Survivors to ignite zombies from long range. The model was remade from scratch.
- It was originally part of the Brickbat props, thus its Headcrab appearance in the playable Beta.
Type: Assault rifle
Ammo: 5.56mm NATO
Magazine: 30 rounds
The XM-29 OICW (part of the U.S. Army's Objective Individual Combat Weapon program) was an assault rifle concept that sought to combine a standard 5.56mm assault rifle (what would later become the XM8 prototype rifle) with a 20mm cannon and complicated computerized sighting system. A number of problems, including weight, bulk, lack of effectiveness of the 20mm airburst round, and ultimately cost of single unit exceeding 10 000 USD have led to the project effectively being shelved.
The XM-29 never entered full scale production or served with any military, but that hasn't stopped a number of games and films from depicting it in the hands of soldiers and mercenaries, including Half-Life 2 in its Beta phase. In the game, it was originally planned to be the Combine Overwatch and Conscripts' weapon of choice, but it was later replaced by the fictional Overwatch Standard Issue Pulse Rifle (OSIPR).
In the leak, the player can only fire the rifle portion of the gun and zoom in. The grenade launcher was shown working in promo videos, but it doesn't in the leak (the grenade launcher function is in the code, but is disabled). It appears that its grenade function was moved to the SMG1 by the time the leak was made, as getting close to the SMG grenades in the map "zoo_item" causes the message "AR2 Grenades" to appear on the screen.
The OICW has good accuracy as long as the player fires in short bursts, and the scope turns it into a decent makeshift sniper rifle.
Type: Manipulation gun
The Gravity Gun was originally called the Physgun and allowed the player to levitate far away objects without bringing them closer. The Physgun was cut and replaced by the Gravity Gun.
The only information about this weapon comes from an unused HUD texture file called "w_icons3.vtf" in the folder "materials/sprites". It is assumed that it would protect the player from something.
In the leak, there were two SMGs; SMG1 and SMG2. SMG1 was supposed to be the MP5 as described earlier, but was replaced by a slow-firing version of the final SMG by the time the leak was made. The SMG2 is an MP7 as well, but it has a 60 round magazine and is capable of one or three-round bursts. It is extremely weak, but makes up for it with a large amount of ammo per magazine.
Interestingly, an unmodified leak has the SMG2 use the SMG1 model. The SMG2's weapon file must be edited in order for it to use its proper model.
Of note is that the SMG1's world model textures are called "w_smg2.vtf". That means the SMG1's model file might've been for the SMG2 at one time, which explains why the SMG2 uses the SMG1's view model in an unmodified beta install.
Type: Sniper rifle
An unknown sniper rifle of Combine origin was planned to be in the arsenal, but was dropped in favor of the less conventional crossbow (which has the same range for a skilled player). This weapon was adapted for use by Overwatch Snipers, and was eventually seen by the player in Episode Two.
- In Half-Life 2 and its episodes, the player can spawn a box of sniper rounds using the console command "give item_box_srounds". These rounds would originally act as ammo for the sniper rifle. Valve most likely forgot to remove the sniper ammo from the final release. The boxes have the numbers 013501337 (leetspeak for "obsolete") on them, which may mean that they were dropped very early and forgotten.
Stands for Selectable Lightweight Attack Munitions. They can be thrown or placed on walls. The player can throw as many S.L.A.M.s as they want and then detonate all of them at the same time. Alternatively, there is a tripmine mode. This was re-used in Half-Life 2: Deathmatch, various mods such as Garry's Mod and appears armed at various points in Nova Prospekt.
A piece of concept art for Half-Life 2 depicts Alyx was to own a basic weapon in the form of a socket wrench, just like the crowbar for Gordon or the pipe wrench for Shephard. It is unknown if it is portrayed only for aesthetic reasons or if it actually was to be scripted.
Appearing like the classic Half-Life 2 pistol, it shoots red blobs that stick to anything (including enemies). The player can then detonate them with the secondary fire key. This weapon also has long range firing capabilities (like a grenade) if pointed higher.
The weapon also makes an appearance in Team Fortress 2, as the Demoman employs a weapon of near identical description as his secondary weapon. However, it only sticks to walls, floors, and other surfaces. If a bomb makes contact with another character, it simply bounces off.
- This gun is restored in some mods.
It was originally possible to pick up the Stun Baton from a killed Metrocop and use it. Weapon_stunbaton still spawns a baton, but it can't be used to attack and instead is used as a suit battery. Half-Life 2: Deathmatch lets players playing as Combine use stunsticks, which are stronger than the crowbar, but are swung slower.
Type: Experimental, particle cannon
Ammo: Depleted uranium
The Tau Cannon was first scheduled to be in the arsenal, but due to unknown reasons was cut from the final version. It had a similar model to the Tau Cannon mounted on the Buggy, and was similar in operation to the Tau Cannon from Half-Life.
- An unused sound clip can be found in the game's files of a citizen talking about detaching the Tau Cannon from something, suggesting that at some point in the game's development, the Tau Cannon was to be detached from the Buggy for the player to take with them after leaving the car at Lighthouse Point.
- SMOD restores the Tau Cannon as a usable weapon. It has to reload every 20 shots, gets altfire ammo directly from the player's ammo supply and uses the SMG model.
The Thumper/Restrictor was originally to be a small, usable item, in the form of a yellow fire hydrant (though this may have been just a temporary placeholder model). The player was to carry only one at a time and could put it on the ground to achieve to same effects as the larger, stationary versions in the retail version. It is possible that the player was never intended to get a portable thumper, but may have been created solely for play-testing thumper locations.
The Strider Cannon was going to be a weapon that would be dropped from dead striders. At one point during development you were able to use the gun. The gun was able to shoot the Warp Cannon and the normal shots. The model and animations were finished at the time. The weapon was cut do to it being to over powered. The model was all that was left in the game.