Tag Archives: half life

Half Life 2: Launching the Garden Gnome Into Space

I admit it. I’m a Half Life addict. Half Life was the first (real) first-person shooter I ever bought and played (save for the old original Wolfenstein 3D) and I was instantly hooked.

I also purchased most of the add-ons: Opposing Force and Blue Shift. I had to wait several years for Half Life 2 to come out, but I purchased it right away when it did release, then did the same when Episode 1 and Episode 2 came out.

There is a new character in Episode 2: a garden gnome. If you do any searches for the Half Life garden gnome, you’ll quickly find that he may very well be the most hated character in the Half Life universe.

Why is he such a hated character? Because he is so hard to kill? Because he insults your heritage in the game?

Garden gnome chats with Alyx and Vortigaunt

With the release of Episode 2, Valve (the publisher) added some optional challenges to the game. I didn’t notice them until after I had played through it once. The challenge that most interested me was launching the garden gnome into space.

I had remembered seeing the garden gnome the first time I played it through and thought to myself, “Hey, that’s an interesting thing to stick there.” The gnome appears near the beginning of the game.

At the end of the game, a rocket is launched into space to plant a satellite. That’s the rocket you must place the gnome on. So, yeah, you have to carry that stupid gnome through the entire game to accomplish the challenge.

I am currently attempting to complete the challenge. I’m at the part where you have to drive a car for quite awhile. This is a problem because that stupid gnome, which you are not able to carry and drive at the same time, keeps flying out of the car every time you accelerate, brake, or turn too quickly. It sucks!

Driving carefully when a bunch of bad guys are trying to kill you is no easy task!

I thought to myself, “There has got to be an easier way to get this gnome to his destination!”

So I did a quick searching on Google and, after reading several blogs, I found somebody who has figured out how to safely secure that piece-of-garbage gnome to the car. So if you, like many many other Half Life geeks, have been pulling your hair out trying to drive the car without losing the gnome, you’ll want to check it out.

True Half Life geeks seem to be able to complete the gnome challenge in as little as 3 hours. Me? I have a life, so it’ll take me a few weeks. You know… trying to make the $30 I paid for this game worth something more than 3 hours of enjoyment ;)