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Combat 17 Written Report #2 - Version 0.4 Release and More!

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HatThing avatar HatThing
Level 56 : Grandmaster Button Pusher

Sentient Hat speaking!

Welcome back to the 'Written Report' series! For how time-consuming they can be, I initially thought against writing another one of these. But hey, venting about the pain I've endured was quite entertaining last time - so why not do it again?

That said, let's dive straight into the nitty-gritty stuff.

Combat 17 Written Report  #2 - Version 0.4 Release and More!
PART 1: Version 0.4 release - everything you need to know

After two months in the making, the fourth release of Combat 17 is finally out! Introducing two new weapons to complete the arsenal: The RPG and the fan-favourite Gravity Gun. Also behind the scenes is a reworking of the code en mass, allowing for a smoother experience for servers and low-end computers. But of course, there are much more features to talk about, big and small, so let's get onto those, shall we?

As expected for a weapons datapack, a large portion of the time was used to remake these weapons. It was no easy feat, but as with coding, the results can be worthwhile.

Each new weapon came with its own unique set of features - here are their stories:

Combat 17 Written Report  #2 - Version 0.4 Release and More!Do I even need to explain?

Utilised by Gordon Freeman himself, the crowbar has remained a staple icon in the series - it would be a shame to leave this weapon out of the datapack.

The animations are the most intriguing part of this weapon. Despite the weight of the crowbar, I wanted to make these animations feel destructive and heavy. Fortunately, before its development, I instantly fell in love with MTB's crowbar animations. This helped with 2 of the 3 whacking animations in the datapack.

Speaking of which, did you know that the drawing animation was meant to be longer? The crowbar was meant to be thrown and caught, but the animation length ended up being bothersome, so I decided to cut it short. You can still find the uncut version in the files, so it shouldn't be too difficult to bring it back.

Combat 17 Written Report  #2 - Version 0.4 Release and More!
Half-Life 2's version of the MK3A2 grenade. Quite an interesting weapon.

This weapon's coding is pretty unique, to say the least. Functions such as drawing and detecting inputs are the same. But new commands were made to make sure it worked as intended. For instance, the throwing is staged to ensure the player could hold the pin for later use, and the weapon is instantly cleared once it runs out, a feature unique to this one.

The physics of the grenade were made possible with the help of Timber Forge's 'Launch Entities' video. To be honest, this pack wouldn't be here had it not been for his tutorials, so be sure to check them out!

As for the animations, I wanted to make them more unique by having the player pull the pin before throwing. This is contrasted by Half-Life 2, where this is done via drawing. The animation following this isn't too significant, but I'll say that the lengths I had to go through to fix the arm were rather bizarre.

Overall an alright addition to the pack. Had a fun discussion with Terminant regarding its flaws. But that's all.



Jokes aside, The model is one of my proudest so far. The coding is but a carbon copy of the already done SMG. Its functions stay true to its ingame counterpart, and the reload?

The reload.

If you haven't known yet, there's been an ongoing debate about how the AR2 is reloaded. Whether its drum magazine is replaced, similar to MMod, or Valve's way of reloading was correct, we're not too sure of. But I decided to mix these two styles into the datapack. Going towards vanilla for the normal/empty reload and for the fully-empty animation, following MMod.

A couple of janks here and there, but I'm pretty satisfied with how it turned out. I even found that a couple of people were also glad about how it felt and fired. A success in my book.

Resistance Crossbow

Where do I even start?

Half-Life 2's resistance crossbow: Improvisation, precision, fatality. (except it won't work in real life. No, seriously, check out the Hacksmith's video on it). A symbol for the resistance of City 17. Who knows, maybe Rita will like it (more on her later).

The animations are more akin to MMod's version as I was unhappy with Half-Life 2's auto-draw reload (again, Gordon gun magic). But they did end up being one of the smoothest animations out of the whole pack, so that's cool, I guess.

As for the alt-fire, I wanted to replicate Half-Life 2's zoom-in function with a bit more style. Sounds easy, right? Two issues: Zooming and the scope. At the moment, if you wanted to have a vanilla-friendly, zoomed-in view, you'll either have to settle with slowness or the new spyglass. I picked the former since I had no clue how to make the shooting work. As for the latter, this issue remains since the scope takes up a majority of the view.

I may have made the most redundant gun scope in the history of gaming.
Moving on.

The rebar physics are quite weird: Not as accurate as I hoped them to be, and they're pretty obsessed with spinning. These are issues that I'll have to take into account in the future.

Not the greatest weapon, but I'm sure a bit more polishing up would be its saving grace.



Okay, the laser-guided rocket's one of my proudest inventions, for sure. But I'm willing to point out that this weapon's a mess all-around.

Three words: Laser-Guided Rockets. The guiding part works fine - but a solution for multiplayer is yet to be found. The damage is pretty inconsistent, and not to mention, there are moments where the rocket doesn't even detonate on impact - instead, having a seizure on the ground.

Nonetheless, the inspirations taken for this weapon's animations are diverse. The drawing animation is inspired by MrBrightside's RPG from Half-Life 2: Redux. The reload animation is heavily inspired by Kylul's Soldier FPS animations, and lastly, the idle viewmodel is taken from MMod.

Overall, the RPG isn't the best, particularly the projectiles.

Gravity Gun

The weapon you've all been waiting for...

There are already hundreds and thousands of recreations of this weapon. Be it Ichun's iconic mod or the plethora of datapack recreations out there, it's hard to deny that this is the go-to weapon for Minecraft inventions.

But yet, despite the insane amounts of tutorials out there, remaking this proved to be easier said than done.

To make matters worse, I was in the middle of moving during its creation. This lead to limited internet and a lack of free time. Fortunately, I had one powerful asset up my sleeve: Garry's Mod.

(Just kidding, a majority of my reference came from a gameplay video of Ravenholm. Though I will admit to having a blast with it.)

Now onto the functions: I kickstarted this process by finding an efficient way to detect and grab the exact block name in a specific position. This helped a lot with block-picking, especially since I didn't have to hardcode every block into the commands.

Just to get a peek at its inner workings, a raycast signal is sent out to seek the block the player is looking at. This block is then used to replace a summoned armour stand's head, where the illusion that you've picked up a block is created. Once thrown, the armour stand is blasted off using TB's physics, as mentioned before. Finally, on impact, a falling block entity is summoned to replace the thrown armour stand. This is to ensure that the result is still a block.

Further testing discovered that this system isn't perfect. The hitboxes of the armour stand are rather bothersome, and there are moments where the block ends up spawning as an item. If you want a much better gravity gun recreation, go check out SilicatYT's datapack - it's much more reliable when it comes to blocks.

In the end, this is just another generic gravity gun remake you could find anywhere, albeit slightly worse. However, two things make this version unique: Animations and the ability to blast mobs on the spot (seriously, I don't see many recreations add that).

Preview Models
I was not happy with some of the weapon models. That said, here's a sneak peek at what the newest weapons overhaul will look like.

The H&K MP7. Built from the ground up.

The Franchi SPAS-12. New and improved textures.

The weapon overhaul will be implemented by the time everything else has been perfected. It'll feature a fully reanimated experience and a few improved models to enhance the weapons of the datapack.

Like that's ever happening.

Done, but not perfect.

A lot of these weapons are alright in my eyes; As far as development goes, a lot of polishing is yet to be done to make the best experience possible.

That said, let's see how every weapon stacks up with each other - in the form of a tier list!

Here's a basic summary of my rankings:
Rita - best weapon, no doubt

Shotgun - probably the most reliable weapon in the datapack
AR2 - suffers the same firing issues as the SMG, but otherwise, a gratifying weapon to use

SMG - ammo-count makes it reliable, but its constant stuttering and long empty-reload are its downfalls
.357 Magnum - another powerhouse, though the long reload and cooldown makes it hard to use

9mm Pistol - not too much of a deal, was going to rank it high because of bias ;)
Crossbow - satisfying when used right, rebar issues make it much worse than it should be
Grenade - long cooldown, but very destructive when used right

Gravity Gun - fun to mess around with, but bothersome to use in combat and gets pretty buggy

Crowbar - makes you feel like Gordon, not much else though
RPG - as I said, this is more of a mess than it should've been

Feel free to make your tier list and share them in the comments!

Overhauled Aesthetics
There's much more to Half-Life 2 than just its weapons. In this case, Half-Life 2 presents much more to enhance the combat: From the futuristic HUD to the many details that seemingly ramp up the intensity of a firefight. Combat 17 does a bit more to replicate a similar approach.

Main Menu
Main menu screens. Efficient for foreshadowing what's to come.

Half-Life 2's approach was simplistic yet effective: Simple text in a motion-filled backdrop of City 17 and its remnants. Unfortunately, such can't be achieved in Minecraft, as a lifeless panorama fills the screen.

Looking back at the April Fools' post for MMod was a preview of what the main menu would have looked like. For this, the orange, futuristic elements of Half-Life 2's terminal are borrowed, creating a text backdrop that breathes new life to the text. Of course, since this is but a mere goof, it'll never exist.

Fine, I'll do it myself.

Like the HUD, two things made this possible: Negative spaces and custom characters. Thus, after hours-on-end of trial and error, I present to you the new main menu.

The background was made by the Panda Cafe duo: Terminant & canday. Without those two, I don't think this project would be the way it is now, so please check them out! Otherwise, all the other elements are my works.


Magic, I must say.

Everything changed the moment I realised custom languages existed. This allowed for various text formats in the same space. For instance, letting big and small number icons co-exist. So, after fiddling around with boxes, characters and numbers like the olden days, I crafted a HUD that resembled Half-Life 2 MMod's version.

Overall, not a 1-on-1 replica, and it gets finicky at some points. Otherwise, I'd say it's an improvement to replicating the Half-Life 2 experience.

GUI Previews
A common complaint about the previous version was its performance. Dropping PCs from well above 100 FPS to just around the 30s. Not good.

Without sacrificing everything to clear off elements, I found an optimal solution that proved to be effective. Replacing each model with a PNG image before being drawn. Essentially, why settle for hundreds of elements when you could just have 1?

Here are the new icons, opting for not just performance but also readability.

Bullet Holes

Perhaps the most broken part of the datapack, which luckily, can be disabled.

To make things brief, the system used detects for blocks or the lack thereof. With small movements, the bullet will check for the closest wall and spawn a bullet hole from there. One of the main issues is whether you could keep shooting at a bullet-filled wall: If you haven't known yet, the right-click-detection doesn't work near armour stands. A nightmare considering how the holes rely on them. This is (almost) fixed by pushing the armour stand back and utilising a model that's ahead of the eyes. In return, this makes the textures pitch black - a sacrifice needed to bypass such a limitation.

The wall-detection system will be used for upcoming effects of the same calibre. I'll let you use your imagination but will leave a comment that Minecraft gore is doable ;)


The latest version of Combat 17 relies on the same items for configuration: Books!

What makes this version different, you may ask? Instead of the usual one or two, 0.4 gives the player 4 unique books. This lets the player gain control of the datapack - configuring details, grabbing items, and, if they're a bookworm, reading through the poorly-written stuff I've written about the datapack.

Their subjects are as follows:
Introduction - Basic intro to the project + credits
Weapons - Weapons, ammo and controls
Technical - Settings to configure the datapack
Frequently Asked - Project questions and some troubleshooting

Wanna know what's specifically inside these books? Find them out yourself by grabbing the datapack! (definitely not because I'm too lazy to start copypasting)

PART 2: The Ritapocalypse

"There it stood. A rebel from the outskirts of City 17. Her origins - unknown.

A well-known symbol of resistance - implanting itself into a cropped beanie. Beneath it, flaxen strands intertwine themselves, revealing a young, stubborn glare. Familiar armour encircling a figure's torso. Mounting over its teal, impoverish clothing as it surrounds itself with the equipment of an apocalypse.

A strong-minded profile; Her name? Rita, Rita Wain."

As some of you may know, I was in the middle of my Touhou phase when I started this project. For that reason, I used the skin of the Touhou character, Kutaka Niwatari, while recording the older videos. This grew to the idea of Niwatari being a City 17 rebel, giving birth to a certain skin.

Months passed, I started searching for an alternative to Gordon Freeman's arms. Then I saw her.
Forget about Freeman, I thought.

I needed to refresh my skinning skills anyway, so I decided it would be a fun task to remake the Kutaka Rebel skin I made months ago. After it was all done, there she was: Rita Wain. Why Rita Wain, you may ask? Rearrange the letters, and you'll get 'Niwatari'. The last name of the character she was built upon.

Months following her creation, Rita continues to be celebrated amongst the team, spawning some creative fanart and several jokes related to the waifu culture (if that's even how you call it).

Rita Artwork:
canday (WIP)


my stinky art

Most importantly, the Ritapocalypse.
I'll let it explain itself through this video:

In conclusion, we're proud to call Rita the project mascot. So be sure to check her upcoming adventures in the future project: Resistance Lambda.

PART 3: The Future

This project has progressed much more than I expected. Attention's becoming more widespread, the datapack has improved overall and most importantly, I've met a couple of buddies along the way. It's tempting to ask: What's left for this project in the future? Besides the casual expansion of new features and bug-fixing, this project also has a future for the mapping community! I'm excited to announce that so far, two maps will be in the works very soon.

The first one will be a close collaboration with panR4IN, where we'll be recreating one of the earlier chapters of Half-Life 2 along with more HL2-inspired packs. The other map, Resistance: Lambda, will be the efforts of BlockState Citadel, following the whereabouts of Rita Wain as she fights her way through a combat-ridden City 17.

Another crucial addition, albeit unrelated to mapping, will be further Deathmatch support! Here, I'll be collaborating with PanIntegral's server hosting and a few playtesters to stretch the datapack's multiplayer capabilities.

As always, it enlightens me to see this project flourish and grow with time. We're hoping to continue the project with the same momentum and expand its territory to reach its full potential.

Part 4: Closing Words

On a bleaker note, summer is ending, and I'll be going back to schoolwork very soon. Although progress will be slowing down, I'll remain excited to work alongside BlockState Citadel and a few of the community's enthusiasts to bring this project forward.

I can never thank you all enough for the support that this project has amassed over the months. Whether you've downloaded the datapack or have shown your interest in other means, it means a lot that people are noticing the hard work we've placed to recreating the Half-Life 2 experience in Minecraft.

I hope you've all learned something new today! And have a safe day.

Credits & Special Shoutouts

- Valve - Original game, some sound and visual assets

- BlockState Citadel for testing, support and being epic:
> Main inspiration + Modelling support - Bloxz
> Build team for the potential campaign - Terminant canday
> Testers - LynxxCake Chabileo DragonsDungeon kodayne SAgamerIvan Nashii niceboat_ OddlyDelta MLM3 awildmelon_
> Shoutouts - Panintegralus panR4IN

- Commands & Technical boogaloo
> AmberWat - Negative Spaces Font for the HUD
> Cloud Wolf & Timber Forge - Tutorials that helped with commands
> BananVonan - Optimisation help
> Minecraft Commands Discord Server
> Diamond - Reminding me of the HUD

> Slidur's Shaders
> BSL Shaders
> Pixel Luminance

- Sound Credits:
> Valve (Half-Life 2), DICE (Battlefield series), New World Interactive (Insurgency), soundsnap, freesound, soundfxcenter


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09/29/2022 4:06 pm
Level 1 : New Miner
OWiBanana avatar
I have a issue with a resource pack (RP). I did everything as was said, but every time I try to load the resourcepack, it says:"unable to load the resource pack"
The version must be right, I have 1.17 minecraft version and the pack is Combat 17 - 0.4

Another problem appears, when I downloaded the Combat 17 - 0.4.1 on a minecraft version 1.18x. It doest want to work either, but there is also another weird thing. In files, it says 0.4.1, but in minecraft it says 0.4 for some reason.

Please help me with that problem, I want to use this resourcepack for a half-life themed map.
Your regards
06/17/2022 2:22 pm
Level 1 : New System
Jabs_T avatar
How to get the guns?
05/04/2022 9:37 am
Level 1 : New Miner
User3968488G avatar
hello bro, please say a how download a this datapack. good luck
11/19/2021 5:28 am
Level 1 : New Miner
AlbertDekar77 avatar
This is really great information I ever read had. This will very helpful for me and for new users. Thanks for this great article. I am Minecraft gamer and I like to play it. Here I have BSL Shaders pack for minecraft world, in which you can get many different shades.
08/29/2021 5:30 pm
Level 1 : New Miner
GGAMER3K avatar
im having an issue with the datapack

minecraft keeps giving me a faiIed vaIidation text

i tried disabIing it and enabIing it ingame but aII i got was a red text about "keeping data"

then i redownIoaded the fuII datapack and i stiII got a faiIed vaIidation text { This started Today }

pIz heIp i Iove using the datapack
08/29/2021 9:12 pm
Level 56 : Grandmaster Button Pusher
HatThing avatar
I found this issue could be fixed by extracting the datapack zip file first and then dragging the extracted folder into the datapack folder. Perhaps you could see if that'll fix it?

Sorry that you're facing issues with the datapack, and I hope you'll be able to give it a try soon.
08/30/2021 7:29 am
Level 1 : New Miner
GGAMER3K avatar

And is there a chance I can use your datapack in a server. I understand if the answer is no
08/30/2021 1:42 pmhistory
Level 56 : Grandmaster Button Pusher
HatThing avatar
Sure, feel free to use it on a server! Just be warned that things can get pretty buggy in multiplayer though.
08/30/2021 2:40 pm
Level 1 : New Miner
GGAMER3K avatar
ok thanks

the buggy part iII try to Iimit 2 weapons per pIayer

and i don't know if it's a bug or feature but the ammo item keeps on getting dropped from my inventory when i am hoIding a weapon

and nice work with the infinite ammo, been searching for that for weeks
08/28/2021 12:46 pm
Level 14 : Journeyman Network
UKRmale_07 avatar
i frickin love it :} (and yes i'm half life fan)
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