Black Mesa Definitive Edition Beta

Hello everyone, and Happy Halloween!

Black Mesa is a full 50% off until November 2nd for The Steam Halloween Sale. To celebrate we have released Black Mesa 1.5 to public-beta!

To play the latest build, simply right click the game on Steam, click “Properties”, go to the “Betas” tab, and select “public-beta” from the dropdown menu.

Black Mesa Definitive Edition Features (On Beta Branch)

“Power Up” Powered Down

We changed the chapter to have more “cause and effect” gameplay, and to better highlight the player’s overall goal for the chapter. You now have to fight your way through a darkened facility to get the lights back on, kill the Gargantua, and “Power Up” the tram. We also took the chance to really let our new dynamic light system shine, with some cool mood lighting!

On A Rail Updates

We have made large scale changes to the On A Rail rocket silo to better show the objective and subsequent solution. The rocket now gets the respect it deserves, and the chapter is a lot more nicely tied together now. We also completely relit the section to help guide the player, and to tell a better story. These changes are in addition to the revisions we made in the summer beta.

Art Passes

We’ve continued our art passes to get all of the Earthbound natural environments on par with Xen. The artists and level designers implemented brand new art for all the outdoor environments, and refined the art previously seen in the Summer Beta.

“We’ve Got Hostiles”

On A Rail

Questionable Ethics

Surface Tension

“Forget About Freeman”

New Shields and Level Details For Interloper

Full Workshop Support

We’ve improved the workshop so that it is easier for players to check out everything community mods have to offer. Changes include:

  • Fixed needing to manually add the “custom” folder for mods to work, now all types of mods should work just the click of the “subscribe” button
  • Enabled support for scripts, choreography and particles when shipped with mods, to better expand the types of content community modders can included
  • Fixed sounds and music not playing properly and requiring “snd_restart” to work
  • Added ability for mods to ship/edit skill.cfg and weapon .dmx files, allowing mods to now modify player health and damage settings
  • Added logic_playerproxy entity

Now – if you are in the beta, and the mod has been updated to the latest version of the beta, all you have to do is click subscribe to use the mod. Please let us know if you have any issues with specific mods, and we will look into it or reach out to the mod creator.

More Languages for Closed Captions

We have implemented some of our new translations from Crowdin. Thank you to everyone who helped translate and proofread! Your support was phenomenal. We plan on implementing all completed translations into the full release of the definitive edition.

Russian (redone from scratch)
Ukrainian (new language)
Croatian (new language) (Completed, but not called by UI yet)
Czech (new language) (Completed, but not called by UI yet)
Georgian (new language) (Completed, but not called by UI yet)
Hungarian (new language) (Completed, but not called by UI yet)

Full Changelist

Here is the complete list of updates (includes changes made for the previous summer beta)

  • Added dynamic lights to all health chargers and HEV chargers
  • Added corpse gib sounds
  • Added long jump bootup sequence
  • Added Agrunt pod breaking sound effect
  • Sunlight shadows (CSM) for viewmodels fixed for all quality settings. (These will not work on potato quality settings, for performance reasons)
  • Fixed freezing issue that would happen when closing pause screen too soon while saving game
  • Fixed Guard not being able to go from crouch to walk without going into idle pose first
  • Fixed scientists not healing the player when they are low on health (still have to fix female scientists)
  • Fixed crash when shooting an explosive barrel with shotgun
  • Fixed Guards in player squad from standing in straight line during combat
  • Fixed Vort hands glowing after attack has been completed
  • Fixed long jump “Landing Jets” to call string for translation files
  • Fixed crash with HEV bootup sequence when using translated text
  • Fixed crash in Surface Tension on Linux

  • Added “No Weapon Switch” setting for multiplayer
  • Added disconnect button for leaving multiplayer
  • Added crouch toggle
  • Fixed key binds to allow keyboard and controller binds
  • Fix in game voice (VOIP) bind and display icon (now displays player icon and name)
  • Fixed singleplayer maps loading as multiplayer if you start a game from multiplayer
  • Fixed timer and frag count not being carried over into game

  • We Got Hostiles outdoor updates
  • On A Rail outdoor updates
  • Questionable Ethics outdoor updates
  • Surface Tension outdoor updates
  • ”Forget About Freeman!” outdoor updates
  • All new shields and art details for Interloper
  • Made eye more reflective for houndeye
  • Floodlights now have off skin
  • Fixed incorrect vine flow direction in the vine cave in Xen B
  • Fixed clustered props in Lambda Core to light better
  • Fixed duplicate lift geometry in Lambda Core map E
  • Turned ladder hatch in Office Complex into a prop to fix lighting and sorting issues
  • Fixed OAR tram glowing in the dark
  • Added more developed skybox through all of Surface Tension Uncut maps
  • Fixed improperly lit props in Interloper map A
  • Added “server” props to Interloper factory columns
  • Added LODs to vehicle and hero props
  • Added hatch models for Interloper
  • Added trim to Interloper factor
  • Fixed foliage welding errors (floating props)
  • Recreated old desert rock props
  • Added new foliage assets
  • Added new rock assets
  • Added new Mesa assets
  • Added welds meshes to Interloper
  • Clustered props for Questionable Ethics Xen scene
  • Fixed floating props in Gonarch
  • Fixed props missing collision
  • Added new “heart” room art for breaking the shields at the end of Interloper C1
  • Fixed collision on first Interloper machine
  • New art for “Power Up”

Level Design

Game Wide
  • As always, a huge slew of fixes for bugs and softlocks found by the community, many of which are too small to mention here!
  • Clipping pass across the whole game to smooth out player collision and prevent nasty bumps
  • Added further clues
  • Added designated supply boxes game wide so players can better find resources these will always contain health, battery, or both. Note: other items can still be found in unmarked crates just like in previous versions of BMS, these new boxes are just for health/battery pickups. Health/battery can also still be found loose in the world too.

Unforeseen Consequences
  • Moved first combat headcrab spawn to in front of the player (Map A)
  • Fixed guard from standing on top of chair in scripted sequence… (Map B)
  • Drew attention to dead zombie legs in lab and HEV pickup (Map B)
  • Better drew attention to headcrab/monitor sequence by moving headbutting zombie elsewhere (Map B)
  • Nudged battery closer to edge of shelf so that it can be picked up without parkour (Map C)
  • Allowed player to pick up pistol at dead guard that was crawling toward health charger (Map C)
  • Improved freezer red valve puzzle (Map C)
  • Made player find red valve and bring it to socket to flood sewer to better iterate on mechanic from the freezer puzzle, and to better utilise the entire sewer space (Map C)
  • Rearranged barrels in sewer to let players distract barnacles (Map C)
  • Shortened vent crawl near freight elevator to reduce unnecessary downtime and improve player guidance and storytelling (Map D)
  • Fool proofed the houndeye explosion sequence to prevent an edge case where sometimes the bridge wouldn’t explode but players would just fall through it (Map D)
  • Added suit zoom prompt during headcrab, bullsquid fight (Map E)
  • Added hidden goodies to better reward exploration (Map E)
  • Increased drama and number of houndeyes in final fight before Office Complex to better send
  • off the chapter (Map E)

Office Complex
  • Fixed soft lock that could happen if you shoot headcrabs that get electrocuted at start of chapter (Map A)
  • Moved power for electrified water to light switch next to door (Map A)
  • Fixed bad trim on electrified water room (Map A)
  • Converted door ladder to model to fix lighting issues (Map A)
  • Changed Vort ambush to a Zombie ambush, to better “reward” and teach the player about the weapon, and to give the big Vort office fight more power (Map A)
  • Fixed metal grate that was playing wrong sound effect when hit (Map B)
  • Added “Xog” to freezer instead of legacy fog (Map C)

“We’ve Got Hostiles”
  • New art for outdoor sections (Chapter Wide)
  • Fixed chapter title having “!” in it (Map A)
  • Overhauled introduction scene with Guard in vent to feel more natural and be more like the original (Map A)
  • Reworked “Rescued At Last!” scene to better show story beat and give players a clearer view (Map A)
  • Improved hallway headcrab fight to be more interesting (Map A)
  • Choreographed scientist at tripmines to not follow player, to help boost Gman scene (Map A)
  • Blocked locked double doors to better signal to the player that is not the critical path (Map A)
  • Restructured environment to frame “12 Dumbass Scientist” scene to give players better and more natural view (Map A)
  • Increased volume of “I’m with the science team!” voice line and changed one of the scientists to be a woman (Map B)
  • Better placed “I am the one man who knows everything!” scientist to look more natural and fool proof the trigger (Map B)
  • Fixed crush death in elevator to surface (Map B)
  • Rearranged warehouse so that the player is drawn into the combat space and so the player initiates the fight (Map C)
  • Fixed broken fog and added new style fog (Map C)
  • Made HECU continue to fire at you after you crawl into collapsing vent shaft; to pressure the player to move forward (Map C)

Blast Pit
  • Added “old style” VOX announcements throughout Blast Pit to give subtle hints to the player about the status of the rocket and what’s going on around them (Chapter Wide)
  • Fixed radioactive goo not triggering Geiger counter (Map A and E)
  • Fixed area where player could get stuck (Map A)
  • Fixed overbright barrels due to water reflection (Map A)
  • Made it so player could not back out of room during tentacle attack (Map B)
  • Fixed scientist reappearing after being dragged out of window in tentacle attack (Map B)
  • Fixed security guard who absolutely refused to die to tentacle monster or rocket fire (Map B)
  • Fixed some visible seams in the world by the Tentacles (Map B and E)
  • Better highlighted which door goes where away from the Tentacles (Map B)
  • Better signposted status of rocket launch and required elements (Map C and D)
  • Fixed BSP seam as you descended final ladder (Map E)

Power Up
  • Gargantuan… update to the entire chapter. Check it out 😉
  • Fixed Gargantua lurking by window, blocking your escape to transformer (Map A)
  • Fixed ladder with no support structure. Everyone needs someone to lean on. (Map B)
  • Reworked combat scenarios with Grunts and Houndeyes (Map B)

On A Rail
  • New art for outdoor sections (Chapter Wide)
  • Added better auto saves (Chapter Wide)
  • Redesigned chapter progression so you take the same tram all the way through the chapter now (Chapter Wide)
  • Fixed multiple visible gaps in the world (Map A)
  • Completely redesigned rocket silo and map progression (Map B)
  • Redid silo lighting to feel spookier (Map B)
  • Added new “workshop” area at the beginning of the map to account for the fact that the player doesn’t have trams to walk on and hide behind anymore (Map B)
  • Added new “security” area looking into the rocket hallway to help enforce the new circular nature of the map (Map B)
  • Added health before large vort/HECU hallway fight (Map B)
  • Improved ladder dismounts in rocket silo (Map B)
  • Relit and rotated skybox above silo to draw more attention and connect the two levels in the player’s mind (Map B)
  • Pushed back fog to include sky elements (Map C)
  • Fixed bad scale on ground blend textures (Map C)
  • Fixed clipping that allowed player to skip fight at the end of chapter (Map C)
  • Fixed truck headlight that was missing and fixed misaligned headlight lens flare (Map C)
  • Fixed bug where the Marine on the 50 Cal would not get off it when the player got near him (Map C)
  • Increased performance when rocket is raising (Map C)

  • Added “nice camouflage, asshole!” scene to when Gordon falls in the water (Map A)
  • Added glowy chemlights to help guide the player through hole in underwater section (Map A)
  • Moved end of map door opening switch to a position where the player can properly see “cause and effect” to reduce player confusion (Map C)
  • Added second Assassin fight once the door is opened, to give the scene more impact (Map C)
  • Added some more health and environmental storytelling around the Assassin arena, to account for the increased difficulty and resulting need for exploration (Map C)
  • Adjusted final route before “knockout” scene to have it feel more like a natural progression for the player (Map C)

Residue Processing
  • Fixed super bright cube maps in some outdoor areas (Map A)
  • Fixed bad red pipe coloration and join near the start of the map (Map A)
  • Replaced vent texture with model to prevent flashlight render issue (Map A)
  • Small bits of better environmental storytelling (Map A)
  • Removed crane physics puzzle as it was not fun or interesting (Map C)

Questionable Ethics
  • New art for outdoor sections (Chapter Wide)
  • Added new prop and lighting to pod holding Alien Grunt (Map A)
  • Fixed HECU running into their own mines (Map A)
  • Choreographed HECU intro so that player now has to initiate the fight with HECU (Map F)
  • Added all new environment in Xen room (Map F)
  • Better lighting for scientist beyond surgery machine (Map F)
  • Fixed soft lock when transitioning to next Map (Map F)
  • Fixed various softlocks in Lobby (Map F)
  • Fixed dev texture on column in Lobby (Map F)
  • Added additional cover and tweaks to Lobby fight (Map F)

Surface Tension
  • New art for outdoor sections (Chapter Wide)
  • Fixed HECU shooting at you when behind security vehicle (Map A)
  • Fixed wall the player and NPCs could walk through (Map D)
  • Fixed doorway you could see through into sky (Map D)
  • Added “HOLY SHIT!” reaction to Guard to help make him feel more lifelike and like a character (Map F)
  • Added dynamic lights to exploded osprey (Map G)

“Forget About Freeman!”
  • New art for outdoor sections (Chapter Wide)
  • Fixed lasers not turning off when player kills turrets (Map A)
  • Fixed turret not being aggressive towards player/Guard (Map A)
  • Adjust Manta positioning/timing to hide the Manta pop in (Map B)
  • Added better fence for player to climb over, so players won’t get confused and try to climb up on the fence (Map B)
  • Fixed player being able to get up onto large rock formation (Map B)
  • Made hospital beds static to keep the playspace from getting cluttered (Map B)
  • Fixed the manta/tank explosions from throwing health/battery pickups around the entire arena, getting them lost from where they’re supposed to be (Map B)
  • Fixed HECU from getting stuck on barrier (Map B)
  • Added some additional ceiling art in underground sections for higher fidelity (Map B)

Lambda Core
  • Improved lightmap scales on many walls/floors for better lighting at no additional performance cost! (Chapter Wide)
  • Fixed decals rendering incorrectly on walls (Map C)
  • Fixed sprinkler particles that floated in mid air in one hallway (Map C)
  • Simplified jumping puzzle in lower area under main core to prevent getting weirdly crushed and make the platforming easier (Map G)
  • Fixed interdimensional scene to show correct FOV (Map I)
  • Fixed bug where laser beams would kill the player as they jumped into the portal, occasionally not letting them progress into Xen (Map I)
  • Fixed bug where the player could sometimes both win and lose at the same time if they jumped into the portal at the exact right moment.

  • Fixed leafs throughout chapter (Chapter Wide)
  • Fixed human skulls spawning from barnacles where they should not (Chapter Wide)
  • Re-culled and clustered all foliage props to prevent weird artifacting and strangely cut off grasses (Map B)
  • Swapped whiteboards to better guide player for first plug puzzle (Map B)
  • Fixed floating prop at start of Xen swamp (Map B)
  • Fixed floating healing pool before second leaf gate (Map B)
  • Fixed healing pool that players would get stuck on sometimes (Map B)
  • Added small step after second leaf gate to help the player jump up (Map B)
  • Re
  • arted polyps in the Tree of Truth to give them higher fidelity and prevent some floating ones (Map B1)
  • Fixed “windows” in root walls by the Tree of Truth to better show objective progression (Map B1)
  • Highlighted tree trunk drop down into trip mine maze (Map B1)
  • Fixed see through rock due to model culling (Map B1)
  • Fixed Ichthys in last deep pool from not being able to swim (Map B1)
  • Fixed second plug puzzle being able to plug two ends of the same cord into one socket (Map C1)
  • Further refined last plug puzzle to be almost impossible to break (Map C1)

  • Fixed human skulls spawning from barnacles where they should not (Chapter Wide)
  • Trapped player in early cave using a rock collapse to prevent backtracking and force them to use the fumerol to progress, to help players learn it is a key gameplay element (Map B)
  • Made sure player could not get to second level of crystal cave before using water crystal (Map B)

  • New art and detailing throughout the chapter to add an additional layer of polish (Chapter Wide)
  • Fixed human skulls spawning from barnacles where they should not (Chapter Wide)
  • Fixed players falling into void and not dying (Map A)
  • Fixed hole in village the player could fall into and get stuck (Map A)
  • Fixed fire at the bottom of controller fight burning out too soon (Map A)
  • Gave Vorts in the Vort Village a few more things to do, and ensured they properly run and hide if the player starts trying to kill them indiscriminately (Map A)
  • Fixed missing rock backfaces (Map A1)
  • Clipped rocks by second jump pad in Garg chase (Map A1)
  • Fixed overlit Gargs at end of chase scene (Map A1)
  • Fixed player being able to clip into a green bubble vat (Map B)
  • Highlighted lift that is needed to find power plug at the top room puzzle (Map B)
  • Fixed brush clipping in pipe (Map B)
  • Fixed giant hole in factory (Map B)
  • Added water effects to Alien Grunt gestation chamber and connecting tube (Map B1)
  • Added checkpoint to first machine so if you fall down during the long jump, you don’t have to just stand there and wait for the sweet, sweet release of a fiery death (Map C)
  • Adding “revving up” to 3rd machine to better telegraph to the player what is going to happen next (Map C)
  • Added grunt pods at end of conveyor sprint to give the section a tenser ending and to look less barren (Map C)
  • Better introduced barrels and cysts as a means of blowing stuff up (Map C)
  • Added healing crystal at start of upper cage fight (Map C1)
  • Significantly optimized elevator fight (Map D)
  • Re-arted the fog during the elevator fight to help further with optimization and to make “pop-in” look better (Map D)
  • Ensured that Alien Controllers are being deleted during Elevator fight once you leave their respective sections, to further improve performance (Map D)
  • Added explosions and nudges to get player off elevator at midpoint (Map D)
  • Fixed crush zone at top of elevator (Map D)

  • Fixed a really strange issue where the tram door in the final sequence would sometimes disappear for some players

Known Issues
  • A number of world seams in ST B with new art
  • Floating polyp models in Xen tree hub (Xen map B1)
  • Controllers currently don’t work in the menu
  • Female scientists unintentionally do not heal player
  • Still have to add multiplayer player model select for new UI
  • If players in multiplayer have same score and are in top 3, they will both get metals
  • Player rank sometimes shows wrong at the top of screen in multiplayer
  • Guard in Surface Tension F will sometime refuse to follow Freeman
  • Possible soft lock in 2 spots in OAR. The silo floor and the up elevator.
  • We still do not ship the mapsrc VMFs – we will do this for the final release of the Definitive Edition

Thank you everyone, and have a great fall season!

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