Over at ModDB, a creator by the name of PinkyDev revealed that Codename: Loop (opens in a new tab)Their project to create a top-down, twin-stick shooter spin-off of Half-Life, has received permission from Valve to be listed on Steam in the near future.
Probably the most impressive thing about Loop is its compatibility with the original Half-Life’s BSP file format. This allows Loop to utilize GoldSrc engine assets, while maintaining the look and feel of Half-Life on the Unity Engine. Loop is also set to support an over-the-shoulder perspective, and even return to a first-person view for some mappers who want to create FPS levels in this new framework.
The BSP compatibility gives Codename: Loop the ability to support a strong modding community of its own, as level designers can use pre-existing tools like Crystice Softworks’ JACK. (opens in a new tab) level editor for Half-Life and Quake to create maps and campaigns in Loop. Keeping that classic Half-Life DIY spirit seems to be an important priority for PinkyDev, who wrote in the last update of the project: “I will do everything I can to support the Steam Workshop, this way everyone will be able to share and download campaigns. and levels and keep this game alive forever.”
The ambition to become a new modding hub is certainly intriguing and ambitious, but the core premise of Codename: Loop from Half-Life twin stick spin-off strikes me as an inspired riff on the classic FPS all on its own. Early gameplay video (opens in a new tab) from last year shows that HL1’s assets and enemies translate well to a new perspective, and it’s funky to hear those classic sound effects and see the soft halogen glow of Half-Life’s signature UI in this context.
PinkyDev seems to have originally conceived Codename: Loop as a Half-Life roguelike, and while that ambition is still there, PinkyDev has shifted focus to developing a linear campaign and building in support for other modders. There is currently no release date specified for Codename: Loop, and its Steam hub has not yet gone live. Until then, the fangame’s ModDB page (opens in a new tab) is the best way to stay updated on development.
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