Okay, Im going to stay away from my traditional reviews and just put out a short one. First of all, THIS IS NOT A GAME!!! It is a tech demo released by Valve to showcase the amazing graphics and lighting that the legendary Source engine has to offer. "But it is a game because I can play it and stuff like that" (says everyone who doesn't know how this works) Now, although you "can play it and stuff like that," it is still Valve's way of showing you their hard work.
Originally planned as a level in the Highway 17 chapter of Half-Life 2, it was then put out as a standalone game...I mean tech demo that, in my opinion, isn't worth $39.99.
This "game" only takes about 15-20 minutes to complete. You start off on some beach with no context at all, and I mean NONE. You meet a fisherman and he says that you have to destroy the combine's "weapon". He grants you access to where they are patrolling and you have to fight your way to a church. This is where the tech demo shows it's true purpose. You will be greeted with a fascinating sight as this "game" shows you amazing lighting and visuals. If I would be rating this game on it's graphics, it would be a 10/10.
After you kill a couple more combine and shoot down a hunter chopper, you take a lift back down to the fisherman. Sadly, that's where the tech demo ends.
I would recommend buying The Orange Box (which is how I got it) or buying the Half-Life Complete Pack. Like I said before, the tech demo doesn't seem worth $39.99.
Overall the "game" is great. And if Valve is reading this, a price drop would be greatly appreciated. The final verdict for this tech demo is an 8/10