Saturday, 22 November 2008

Little Rocket Man

Hiding my "addiction" well, I don't much mention computer games here. However, in "testing" our new PC I played through Half-Life 2: Episode Two again, but this time tried to complete one of its most awkward achievements: Little Rocket Man ...

Basically, one has to transport the garden gnome pictured above through the entire game from start to finish (echoing the travelling gnome prank popularised in the 2001 film Amélie). The ultimate aim is to place the gnome in the pictured hatch so that he can be launched into space, thus playing his own small role in this particular battle against the Combine.

Anyway, though tiresome at times, it was actually fairly easy to do, although the gnome doesn't make for a particularly good projectile weapon (he's not really heavy enough). Aside from accidentally leaving the gnome in a location that can't later be accessed (the section involving retrieving the car springs to mind), the only really awkward portion was driving with the gnome. The game designers need to put a proper boot (or doors!) on the car - the gnome continually falls out of the car whenever you reach, say, 5 MPH. As a result, you wind up punting the gnome, shot put-style, then driving to where he's landed and then repeating the procedure. Annoying in usual conditions, highly frustrating when a helicopter gunship is roasting you at the same time.

Still, mission accomplished in the end.

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