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Overwatch Nexus

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Overwatch Nexus1.jpg
Overwatch Nexus
General information

N/A, refurbished by the Combine


during the uprising


City 17


Combine occupation


Combine Overwatch (formerly human)

Game information
  • d3_c17_10a
  • d3_c17_10b
  • d3_c17_11
  • d3_c17_12
"There's an old building up ahead, a bank or museum or something like that. Whatever the hell it used to be, now it's a nexus for Overwatch in City 17."
Barney Calhoun[src]

The Overwatch Nexus was a major building in City 17, representing the center of Overwatch forces and operations within the city. Having previously been a prominent political building (although Barney identifies it as a former bank or museum), it was later taken over by the Combine following the Seven Hour War.


Barney Calhoun operating Combine computers during the battle to open the way to the roof.

The Combine had apparently been using the building as a headquarters for some time before the uprising, but after the uprising it became the Combine's main base of operations in the city and the primary rally point for the Combine forces. Its power is supplied by Combine Power Generators often found installed in fortified office rooms, as well as in some Combine-converted interiors. Atop the building is a device known as the Suppression Device, also known as the "Suppressor". It is a powerful weapon which functions much like a mortar, but instead of shells it fires beams of concentrated Pulse energy capable of disintegrating living things, similar to the effects of the Energy Ball. Despite being the Overwatch headquarters, the building is somewhat neglected, with half of its circular dome collapsed. Combine walls seen attached to the Nexus on the outside could have been installed in an effort to reinforce the building.

Due to its importance, the Nexus was well guarded by Overwatch Soldiers and an extensive electronic security system, consisting of Combine Ground Turrets (triggered by laser tripwires), Ceiling Turrets and Barricades.


Half-Life 2

In the Half-Life 2 chapter "Follow Freeman!", Gordon Freeman and Barney Calhoun led a Resistance assault on the Nexus. After heavy fighting, they breached its defenses and disabled all of the generators, deactivating the Suppression Device and opening the gates that were blocking access to the area, allowing reinforcements to flow in. When the Combine's reinforcements arrived, the fighting reached its peak as Resistance forces engaged several Striders in fierce combat on the steps of the Nexus. The Battle for the Nexus proved a decisive victory for the Resistance, and it arguably turned the tide of the Battle of City 17 in their favor. After the events of Half-Life 2 and Episode One, the abandoned Nexus was probably destroyed when the Citadel exploded, along with much of City 17. A building that closely resembles it can be seen in the far distance at the beginning of Episode One, right after Dog lifts up the wrecked Gunship.

Related Achievements

Half-Life 2
Hl2 beat supressiondevice.png Fight the Power (10G)
Shut down the suppression device by disabling its generators.

Behind the scenes

The Parliament of Serbia.
  • The building's design was inspired by the Parliament of Serbia in Belgrade. In the Half-Life 2 files, several models related to the Nexus contain the word "parliament", tightening the similarities between the two buildings. The window patterns are also reminiscent of the Reichstag.
  • In the Half-Life 2 leak, the Overwatch Nexus is clearly identified as a former bank. Additionally, the soundscapes for the area feature "bank" in their names.
  • The inscription inside the dome reads the Latin words "Per ardua ad astra nemine contradicente", which roughly translates to "Through struggle to the stars without dissent". "Per ardua ad astra" is the motto of the Royal Air Force.[1]


The Overwatch Nexus building is shown to be fortified with Combine walls in every map featuring its exterior, except for the last map where it is seen (d3_c17_12), where it appears completely untouched. This is a developer oversight.




List of appearances

Main games



Preceded by
Kleiner's Lab (2)
Half-Life 2 story arc journey Succeeded by