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Victory Mine

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Sign victorymine 03.png
Ep2 outland 0100105.jpg
Victory Mine
General information

The Outlands


Combine occupation

Game information
  • ep2_background02
  • ep2_outland_01 to
"Help awaits us, in the mines."
Lone Vort[src]

The Victory Mine is an abandoned mining area located in the Outlands, visited by Gordon Freeman and Alyx Vance during their journey to White Forest. Early on, Alyx is injured by a Hunter and Gordon must go deep inside the mines in an Antlion colony to retrieve larval extract to save her.


Abandoned mines[edit]

Inside the mines.

While the mines had many uses to the Resistance and the Combine, many parts of the mines are infested by Antlions and thus abandoned. There are signs showing that Resistance and Combine forces tried to use the mines as indicated by the mass amounts of resistance and combine corpses found within many parts of the mines. The Vortigaunt says, when the Freeman is trying to find the extract, "The sad fate of these others is our good fortune." Evidence of former life is everywhere (i.e. the corpses), but Zombies (all types), Barnacles and Antlions overran the mines.

Resistance outposts[edit]

One of the few Resistance outposts that have not been overrun by Xen fauna, a silo connected to the outside and connected to the mines with three tunnels, is held by the Resistance members Griggs and Sheckley. Freeman helps them defend their outpost from attacking Antlions, so that they won't reach the Vortigaunt attempting to heal Alyx. The Antlions come from the three tunnels leading to the mines, tunnels 12, 24 and 36 (Gordon arrives there from tunnel 36's ceiling, and the Vortigaunts later arrive from the ceiling of tunnel 12), and their activity is monitored by Antlion Detectors. A fourth access to the silo is a breach in the wall, and it is also monitored by an Antlion Detector. During the invasion, Freeman, Griggs and Sheckley take turns for protecting all four entrances.

As most of the Rebel outposts, Griggs and Sheckley's outpost provide Hoppers and Sentry Guns so that Freeman can hold off the Antlions and Zombies. Most of these Hoppers and Sentry Guns have spray painted art on them, indicating they are Resistance-controlled and thus friendly machines.

One of the outposts has a Thumper to hold off the Antlion attacks but won't stop distant acid spits from Antlion Workers. Unfortunately, that outpost was not prepared for Headcrabs or direct Combine attacks, and as such, Gordon's arrival finds the area in ruins and infested by various types of Zombies.

Outposts also feature many other common supplies.

The Antlion nests[edit]

An Antlion nest.

Many Antlion nests have been discovered deep in the mines. They consist of some parts of the original mine as well as sprawling tunnels leading to deeper cave systems. The nests are usually infested with Antlion Grubs. Many Antlion Workers live in the nests where they tend to the young. The nests are also covered with Antlion webs as well as large structures hosting the eggs, in the same way as bee nests. Skeletons and rotting corpses can be found inside small chambers covered in webs that are apparently where the Antlions store food for their young. An Antlion Guardian also lives within the nests, hunting down all intruders.


Alyx being held by the Vortigaunt.

Half-Life 2: Episode Two[edit]

After Gordon Freeman and Alyx Vance escape from City 17 by the railway, their train is derailed by the explosion of the Citadel at the very end of Episode One. After Gordon is freed from the train with the help of Alyx and the recovered Gravity Gun, the ruins of City 17 are revealed, and Citadel is completely demolished, and a Portal Storm has emerged from the ruins. Then a Portal Storm occurs and Gordon and Alyx proceed into the mines.

In the upper mines can be found a communications center which Alyx uses to contact White Forest. After exiting this area, Alyx Vance is severely injured by a Hunter, and her life hangs by a thread. A Vortigaunt then appears and helps Gordon Freeman transport Alyx to the lower mines, where the player assists Griggs and Sheckley in holding back the Antlion forces. After the battle, Gordon and the Vortigaunt journey deep into the mines to locate the larval extract, then used to save Alyx's life. After fighting through hordes of Antlions, Antlion Workers and avoiding the Antlion Guardian, Gordon Freeman, the Vortigaunt and Alyx Vance exit the underground mines to see Combine forces moving North, presumably to the White Forest base.

After killing the Antlion Guardian, the trio reaches the last Victory Mine settlement, originally turned Resistance outpost but now infested by Headcrabs. Gordon must go through the area to reach the Muscle Car located on a nearby bridge, while Alyx gives him additional support with a mounted Overwatch Sniper Rifle above. Leaving there the Vortigaunt, Gordon and Alyx continue their journey to the White Forest base with the car.

Related Achievements[edit]

Half-Life 2: Episode Two
Ep2 kill poisonantlion.png Acid Reflex (5G)
Kill an acid Antlion Worker.
Ep2 kill allgrubs.png Get Some Grub (20G)
Squish every Antlion Grub in Episode Two.
Ep2 break allwebs.png Piñata Party (5G)
Find and break every web cache.
Ep2 beat antlionguards.png Twofer (5G)
Defeat both Antlion Guards outside the White Forest.

Behind the scenes[edit]

Inside "cave canyon08".
  • The name "Victory Mine" is never mentioned in-game. It actually comes from the several signs written in Russian visible in the area, whose texture files are named "sign_victorymine" from 01 to 04. One sign reads "ШАХТА ПОБЕДЫ", which roughly translates to "Victory Mine". Other signs, including a logo, read "ШАХТА ПОБЕДЫ ИМ 50-ЛЕТИЯ", which roughly translates to "Victory Mine - in memory of the 50 years anniversary". It clearly indicates the mines were created 50 years after an important event, which in this context could be the the end of World War II or the October Revolution. The name might be a reference to a Russian nuclear-powered icebreaker 50 Let Pobedy which bears a striking resemblance to Borealis and started operating the same year Half-Life 2: Episode Two was released.
  • The Antlion caves were originally to appear in the Coast chapters of Half-Life 2, in maps such as antlion_cave01, antcave (both last edited 2002) or cave_canyon08 (last edited 2000).[3] An Antlion King, replaced in Episode Two by the much smaller Antlion Guardian, was to rule the caves and the nests.[4] Antlion Grubs were already to appear, as the model, with slight differences, was already made before Half-Life 2's release.[2][5]
  • The Victory Mine compound is where the Garden Gnome is first found under the bunk bed among old bottles in the communications building early into the journey.
  • According to Valve's Elan Ruskin, the turret battle design went through many changes. Early stages had the player controlling 3 turrets and not ever having to fight Antlions directly. After playtesters complained of not having anything to do during the battles, the number of turrets was changed to leave the player underhanded when in later rounds all the tunnels are active. Later a tweaked version of the hoppers was added to give players yet another tool for fighting the onslaught.[2]


The Victory Mine bears some similarities to the Cragscleft Prison area in the 1998 video game Thief: The Dark Project. In there can be found an abandoned mine (found here) filled with zombies (found here), various dead bodies (found here) and Burricks, creatures spitting a yellow gas poisoning the target (found here as the Antlion Workers; the Bullsquids in Half-Life). There can also be found gray tunnels lit by luminous mushrooms (found here as the Antlion Grub; the Xen crystals and Light Stalks in Half-Life). Indeed series' writer Marc Laidlaw has stated that his favorite PC game of all time is Thief: The Dark Project.[6]




List of appearances[edit]

Main games[edit]


See also[edit]


Preceded by
Technical Trainstation
Half-Life 2 story arc journey Succeeded by
Radio Tower settlement