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List of minor Black Mesa employees

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"This is my hiding spot, and I'm not moving until the situation is drastically improved. Now go away and don't tell anyone I'm here."
Smithers[src]

This article lists the minor Black Mesa employees who have no direct or a minor influence on the Half-Life story arc and often appear as Easter eggs.

Lockers[edit]

Anomalous Materials Lab lockers[edit]

In the locker room of Sector C's Anomalous Materials Lab visited during Half-Life’s second chapter, Anomalous Materials, most of the lockers bear a tag with the name of a Valve employee involved in the development of the game. The names are:

  • Backman: Reference to Ted Backman. Backman's name was also referenced to for the security guard Backman mentioned in an announcement.
  • Bailey: Reference to Kelly Bailey. Bailey's name was also referenced to for the security guard Bailey mentioned in an announcement.
  • Birdwell: Reference to Ken Birdwell. Birdwell's name was also referenced to for the scientist mentioned in an announcement.
  • Bond: Reference to Steve Bond.
  • Casali: Reference to Dario Casali.
  • Coomer: Reference to Greg Coomer. Coomer's name was also referenced to for the security guard Coomer mentioned in an announcement.
  • Guthrie: Reference to John or Mona Lisa Guthrie. Before the Resonance Cascade, the Black Mesa Announcement System in Sector C mentions him in the message "Dr. Guthrie, report to Inspection Lab 6 immediately." After the Resonance Cascade, his locker is open. Inside are two 9mm Pistol magazines on what appears to be an ammo box as well as a US flag. Guthrie was also referenced to for the security guard Guthrie mentioned in an announcement.
  • Johnson: Reference to Brett Johnson. Brett is the designer of the locker room. His locker is located right beside Gordon's locker.
  • Jones: Reference to Chuck Jones.
  • Laidlaw: Reference to Marc Laidlaw.
  • Laur: Reference to Karen Laur.
  • Riller: Reference to Dave Riller.
  • Stelly: Reference to Jay Stelly.
  • Teasley: Reference to Harry Teasley.
  • Wood: Reference to Doug Wood.

The following name tags were not implemented in the final game but can still be found in the Half-Life texture files:

  • Bernier: Reference to Yahn Bernier.
  • Caughley: Reference to Ian Caughley.
  • Cook: Reference to John Cook.
  • Donaldson: Reference to Louise Donaldson. Donaldson's name was also referenced to for the scientist who discovered the Barnacle.
  • Lundeen: Reference to Randy Lundeen.
  • Mark: Reference to Yatsze Mark.
  • Mennet: Reference to Lisa Mennet.
  • Myers: Reference to Cade Myers.
  • Theodore: Reference to Steve Theodore.
  • Walker: Reference to Robin Walker.

Gallery[edit]

Area 3 Security Facilities lockers[edit]

In the security guard locker room of Sector C's Area 3 Medium Security Facilities visited during Blue Shift's second chapter, Insecurity, several of the lockers bear the name of a Gearbox employee involved in the development of the game (save for Valve's Doug Lombardi). The rest of the names are of unknown origins. The names are:

  • Bass
  • Beier
  • Cassello
  • Dunn: Reference to Amanda Dunn.
  • Fase
  • Hood: Reference to Mark Hood.
  • Jones: Reference to Steven Jones. Jones' name was also referenced to for the dead scientist S. Jones in Opposing Force, as well as two Level 3 Dormitories residents in Decay.
  • Kooy
  • Lombardi: Reference to Doug Lombardi, the only non-Gearbox employee referenced here.
  • O'Conner
  • Pauly
  • Phillips
  • Pobst: Reference to Jeff Pobst.
  • Trock
  • Veevaert: Reference to Jim Veevaert.

Gallery[edit]

Level 3 Dormitories[edit]

In the personnel dormitories of Sector C's Level 3 Dormitories visited during Decay's fifth chapter, Domestic Violence, each room except two is occupied by two people, all named after Gearbox employees involved in the making of the game (save for Gordon Freeman). The residents are listed here by wing and shared room.

  • 301: Selitto - Heironimus: Reference to Robert Selitto and Rob Heironimus. Heironimus's name was also referenced to for the HECU recruit R. Heironimus in Opposing Force.
  • 302: McArthur - VanDolen: Reference to Christopher McArthur and Matthew VanDolen.
  • 303: Montague: Reference to Michael Montague. Him and Gordon are the only two residents who don't share their rooms.
  • 304: Reardon - Luna: Reference to Sean Reardon and Eli Luna. "Reardon" is used again for room 307. Reardon's name was also referenced to for the dead scientist S. Reardon in Opposing Force.
  • 305: Cavanaugh - Armstrong: Reference to Sean Cavanaugh and Matthew Armstrong.
  • 306: Martel - Jones: Reference to Brian Martel and Steven Jones. "Jones" is used again for room 307. Jones's name was also referenced to for the dead scientist S. Jones in Opposing Force, as well as a security guard locker name in Blue Shift.
  • Room 309 is not listed as it is Gordon's where he resides alone.
  • 307: Jones - Reardon: Reference to Steven Jones and Sean Reardon. "Jones" is also used for room 306; "Reardon" is also used for room 304.
  • 308: Palmer - Bahl: Reference to Stephen Palmer and Stephen Bahl. Bahl's name was also referenced to for the HECU recruit S. Bahl in Opposing Force.
  • 310: Landon - Hess: Reference to Landon Montgomery and Brian Hess. Montgomery's name was also referenced to for the HECU recruit L. Montgomery in Opposing Force.
  • 311: Mertz - Pitchford: Reference to David Mertz and Randy Pitchford. Mertz's and Pitchford's names were also referenced to for the HECU recruits D. Mertz and R. Pitchford in Opposing Force.
  • 312: Wardwell - Deupree: Reference to Mike Wardwell and Patrick Deupree. Wardwell's and Deupree's names were also referenced to for the HECU recruits M. Wardwell and P. Deupree in Opposing Force.

Gallery[edit]

Announcements[edit]

Several Black Mesa Announcement System announcements directed to scientists and security guards or military personnel are made in Half-Life and its expansions, most occurring before and after the Resonance Cascade in Sector C. Several are references to Valve employees.

  • Backman (cut character): Reference to Ted Backman, Backman is a Lieutenant mentioned in the unused message "Lieutenant Backman and cleanup team to Sub-Level 3." Backman's name was also referenced to on a locker name in Sector C.
  • Bailey: Reference to Kelly Bailey, Bailey is a Sergeant mentioned in the message "Sergeant Bailey to Topside Checkpoint Bravo." Bailey's name was also referenced to on a locker name in Sector C.
  • Birdwell: Reference to Ken Birdwell, Birdwell is a scientist mentioned in the message "Dr. Birdwell reports superconducting interchange is activated." Birdwell's name was also referenced to on a locker name in Sector C.
  • Black: Individual mentioned in the message "Coded message for Captain Black, Command and Communication Center."
  • Coomer: Reference to Greg Coomer, Coomer is an Agent mentioned in the message "Agent Coomer, report to Topside Tactical Operations Center." Coomer's name was also referenced to on a locker name in Sector C.
  • Guthrie: Reference to John or Mona Lisa Guthrie, Guthrie is a Sergeant mentioned in the message "Sergeant Guthrie, report to Topside Motorpool immediately." Guthrie was also referenced to on a locker name in Sector C.
  • Johnson: Reference to Brett Johnson, Johnson is a scientist mentioned in the message "Dr. Johnson, please call Observation Tank 1." in Sector C. Johnson's name was also referenced to on a locker name in Sector C.
  • 16: Unnamed agent mentioned in the message "Agent 16, report to Administration Sub-Level 2."
  • Victor: Scientist mentioned in the message "Dr. Victor, report to Supercooled Laser Laboratory please."
  • West: Scientist mentioned in the message "Dr. West, please report to Lambda Reactor Complex."
  • White: Inspector mentioned in the message "All security personnel, check clearance with Inspector White."

Other[edit]

Retail[edit]

S. Jones[edit]

A reference to Steven Jones, Jones is a scientist whose corpse is seen during the Opposing Force chapter Friendly Fire lying near his desk on which is name tag is seen. He was presumably working on the Displacer Cannon with his nearby colleague S. Reardon, also found dead. He also appears to own or have been using a 9mm Pistol, as one is seen on his desk. Jones's name was also referenced to for a security guard locker in Blue Shift as well as two Level 3 Dormitories residents in Decay.

Otis Laurey[edit]

Otis Laurey[1] is a security guard whose name can be seen in the Hazard Course Training Schedule for the spring/summer season featured in the Half-Life PlayStation 2 instruction manual. He was to take the Black Mesa Hazard Course for Security Guard Training on May 17, 200- at 16:00 under the Miller-based holographic instructor. Hand-written notes added by Gina Cross suggest Miller would not be able to make it, remarking that Barney could fill in for him. Whatever was decided, this never occurred as the Resonance Cascade took place prior to this.

The name "Otis" refers to the nickname given to the overweight security guard class introduced in Opposing Force. Like Gina Cross and Barney Calhoun, he is a generic model with a generic first name turned into a standalone character with a surname. However, unlike the others, he does not make a specific in-game appearance. Otis's name is another reference a character in The Andy Griffith Show in the same vein as Barney's.

Newell[edit]

Signc1a2 2.png

A reference to Gabe Newell, Newell is a scientist who occupied office D-AL 101 in Sector D visited during the Half-Life chapter Office Complex. Left of the office door is a sign with his name with the title "Scheduled Chaos Theory R&D" under it. At the time of the Black Mesa Incident, the office is flooded and a broken cable has electrified the water. A Headcrab is also present. A scientist's corpse can be seen hanging from a hole in the ceiling, possibly Newell's.

Peters[edit]

Peters is a scientist mentioned by one of his colleagues in the chapter Questionable Ethics in Half-Life. He switched on the surgical unit, but never made it back. His body is never seen, but his remains can be found in the room. He actually appears in the game, but his body is destroyed by the machine on map load. His character model is randomly selected.

Smithers[edit]

Smithers is a scientist who appears in the Half-Life chapter Blast Pit. During the Black Mesa Incident, Tentacles emerge in Silo D-01 and the power generator in Silo D-02 must be powered up to destroy them. On his way to start up the generator himself, Gordon Freeman meets Smithers's colleague below who informs him that Smithers left alone to activate the generator but had not returned. Gordon travels up the silo to discover Smithers atop the generator, having abandoned his mission and proclaiming that he has decided to hide there until the crisis ends. Gordon restarts the generator and departs, leaving Smithers's fate unknown.

S. Reardon[edit]

A reference to Sean Reardon, S. Reardon is a scientist whose corpse is seen during the Opposing Force chapter Friendly Fire lying near his desk on which his name tag is seen. He was presumably working on the Displacer Cannon with his nearby colleague S. Jones, also found dead. In Blue Shift, the same name tag can be found on the desk in the office where Harold has retreated to. Reardon's name was also referenced to for two Level 3 Dormitories residents in Decay.

Tolman[edit]

Tolman was a scientist who worked with Doctors Rosenberg and Keller at the time of the Resonance Cascade. During the experiment on GG-3883, he was to power up the secondary magnetic charges. He was killed by the surge of destruction immediately following the incident. Rosenberg was frightened and alerted by his death, but Keller brushed it off in the face of the disaster.

Van Buren[edit]

Signc1a3 3.png

A reference to Bill Van Buren, Van Buren is a scientist who occupied an office in Sector D's Administration Offices visited during the Half-Life chapter Office Complex. Left of the office door is a sign with his name and the title "Diplomatic Relations" under it. When Gordon Freeman reaches the office, a scientist leaps through the window, possibly him. Inside the office are a shotgun, ammo for the weapon, and two Medkits.

Cut[edit]

Harrington[edit]

Signc1a2 3.png

A reference to Mike Harrington, Harrington is a security guard Sergeant and "Morale Officer" who apparently was to have an office somewhere in Black Mesa. A door sign for his office can be found in the game files but not in the game.

Louis Donaldson[edit]

Donaldson was a scientist involved in the research of wildlife found on Xen prior to the Black Mesa Incident. During his work, he was the first to discover the Barnacle creature, and subsequently, also became its first victim. The Barnacle's scientific name, Cirripedia donaldsonia, was named after Donaldson in his honor.[2]

Donaldson only appears in the "Half-Life Monster of the Week" feature on the now defunct website OGR.com. A locker name tag with his name on it is among the several that are in the Half-Life game files but not seen in-game. The name is a reference to Louise Donaldson, thanked in the Half-Life credits.

Isabel Teasley[edit]

An unused tag with the name "Isabel Teasley" can be found in the Half-Life texture files. This is a reference to the daughter of Harry Teasley and Yatsze Mark, both of whom worked on Half-Life.[3]

The real Isabel Teasley is also the baby pictured for the photo in Gordon's locker. Her father Harry is among those who designed that level. Originally, he had put a pin-up poster in the locker and placed Isabel's baby picture elsewhere in a ruined office with the "Isabel Teasley" name tag on the desk. Later, a different designer did a second pass on the level, revamping the interior of the locker and implementing the baby picture, a choice said to have been made on a whim as the photo happened to be available in the texture pack.[4] In-universe, series writer Marc Laidlaw offered the idea that this photo could be of an infant relative of Gordon's, such as a niece.[3]

References[edit]

  1. Half-Life PlayStation 2 instruction manual
  2. Half-Life Monster of the Week Feature on OGR.com
  3. 3.0 3.1 Info received from Valve ONLY on the ValveTime.net Forums
  4. The girl in Gordon's locker turns 14 today. on Reddit