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List of publications in the Half-Life and Portal universe

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This subject is related to the Black Mesa Incident era.
This subject is related to the Combine era.
This subject is related to the Portal era.
This subject is related to the Portal 2 era.
This is a safe article. Click for more information.

This page contains a list of publications featured in the Half-Life and Portal series: newspapers, magazines, and books.

Half-Life series[edit]

Pre-release[edit]

Newspapers[edit]

Local News[edit]

Appears on a junk newspaper model in the Half-Life 2 leak.

Books[edit]

The Third Force[edit]

Book by Marc Laidlaw cut from Half-Life.

Nineteen Eighty-Four[edit]

The actual book by George Orwell is among the trash in the Half-Life 2 texture garbage001a_01.vtf, but remains unused in any model.

Retail[edit]

Newspapers[edit]

7 days[edit]
Main article: 7 days

Russian-language newspaper that appears in Half-Life: Alyx. Its main page is fully legible.

The Mesa Times[edit]

The Mesa Times is distributed among the Black Mesa Research Facility. Scientists can be seen reading it at the start of Half-Life: Blue Shift; one while waiting for his laundry to be done at the very start of the game, and another later on a Black Mesa Transit System platform near Area 3 Security Facilities. The Mesa Times's nameplate uses the font Times, created for the British newspaper The Times.

Money & ???[edit]

Appears on the newspaper folded with The Terminal in the Half-Life 2 model. Its name is not fully legible.

The New York[edit]

Appears on a cork board in Kleiner's Lab. Its nameplate uses the same font as The New York Times.

The Onion[edit]

Appears in Half-Life as one of the trash can gibs, referencing The Onion, a satirical digital media company and newspaper organization.

The Terminal[edit]
Main article: The Terminal

English-language newspaper first appearing in Half-Life 2. In Half-Life: Alyx, its main page is fully legible.

The Times[edit]
Main article: The Times

English-language newspaper first appearing in Half-Life 2 as a cutout on a corkboard in Black Mesa East. In Half-Life: Alyx, its entire main page is fully legible.

Other[edit]

Several additional newspaper clippings with missing or illegible nameplates can be seen on corkboards in Kleiner's Lab and Black Mesa East.

Magazines[edit]

Popular Scientist[edit]

First appears on a cork board in Kleiner's Lab in Half-Life 2. The front cover of this issue features a brown-haired Isaac Kleiner with "Next level of quantum..." as the main cover line. Popular Scientist is also mentioned on the back cover of the Half-Life: Alyx From Here to There in Under a Second book model, where it is quoted praising the work of Isaac Kleiner.

Tech Impact[edit]

Appears in Russell's Lab in Half-Life: Alyx. The front cover of this issue features Wallace Breen with "The mind of Breen. How the right man in the first place could save us all." as the main cover line. On the partially ripped back cover can be seen an advertisement for the Chatka vodka, as well as fragments of 3Dxp and L'orchid ads in the ripped pages.

Books[edit]

Black Mesa White Lies[edit]

This book can be found in the Tanker Yard in Half-Life: Alyx, in the same building the Scientist can be glimpsed. It's located in a small hideout, on a makeshift bed under a pile of other books. Black Mesa White Lies was written by Dr. Jonas Allard and is subtitled "The occult secrets at the heart of the world's most secretive research facility." The back cover of the book mentions another title by the same author, CERN: Gateway to Babylon, and reads:

"Black Mesa...

So secretive that all employees must undergo rigorous background checks.

So self-sufficient it has its own sanitation departments and hydro-electric power generator.

Is BMRF an innocent facility engaged in the pursuit of science? Or the invocation of Babylonian prophecy merging quantum and occult math to open an interdimensional portal between our world and another? And once the portal is opened...

...What will come through the other side?

Dr. Jonas Allard is a renowned paranormal researcher and the author of CERN: Gateway to Babylon."

Black Mesa White Lies is a reskinned version, named "conspiracy," of the From Here to There in Under a Second model. Its author also appears on a book titled The Singular Mind in Firewatch, the developers of which worked on Half-Life: Alyx.

From Here to There in Under a Second[edit]

A book written by Isaac Kleiner that first appears in Eli's Lab in Half-Life 2 as part of a research station bookshelf among other books. It reappears in Half-Life: Alyx as a detailed model that can be found on the starting balcony in Alyx's Hideout. The back cover reveals the contents of the book and reads:

"In From Here to There in Under a Second, Dr. Isaac Kleiner brings a new understanding, as well as a compelling thesis, to a subject long considered to be the stuff of science fiction: teleportation. Taking us through the history of this burgeoning and controversial new field in theoretical physics, Kleiner seeks to explain the unexplainable in this thorough, and often thrilling, peek into a potentially transformational new addition to humanity's future.

Praise For

From Here to There in Under a Second

Kleiner brings darity and excitement to the realm of the impossible.

-Popular Scientist


Dr. Isaac Kleiner is an emeritus faculty member at the MIT Center for Theoretical Physics. He has earned renown for his pioneering contributions to the emerging field of quantum teleportation."

The Alyx asset was modeled and textured by Olly Moss, based on a photo of a deteriorated book.[1]

Barney Calhoun's locker[edit]

Barney Calhoun's locker seen at the beginning of Half-Life: Blue Shift includes two books:

  • Government Conspiracies
  • The Truth About Aliens by RH

The Truth About Aliens also appears in Half-Life: Decay, where it can be found in Gordon Freeman's room in the Level 3 Dormitories.

Eli's Lab bookshelf[edit]

The bookshelf in Eli's Lab features a number of books, the following titles of which are legible:

Gordon Freeman's locker[edit]

Gordon Freeman's locker seen at the beginning of Half-Life includes two books, both by Marc Laidlaw:

Portal series[edit]

Newspapers[edit]

The UP Pioneer Press[edit]

Newspaper based in the Upper Peninsula of Michigan in the United States. The front page of the issue dated January 6, 1944 is displayed in the Testing Lounge located in the 1950s levels of Test Shaft 09 in the Aperture Science Enrichment Center and can be seen by Chell when she passes through the area. It announces the purchase of a salt mine by Cave Johnson and reports him as an entrepreneur local to the Upper Peninsula who is to "Bring Science, Industry to Upper Michigan." Under a picture of the mine, Johnson is quoted "The Future is Here, and it's Under the Earth's Crust".

Magazines[edit]

Parts Illustrated[edit]

Magazine read by P-body while in the waiting room of the Robot Rehabilitation and Wellness Center in Robot Repair.

Books[edit]

The sideboard located in the waiting room in Robot Repair contains real-world books related to Valve's other IPs. They include:

  • Saxton Hale's Mail Storm
  • Girl's Adventure Starring Saxton Hale

Other[edit]

Newspapers[edit]

Courier Times[edit]

Appears in the Super 8 Interactive Teaser at the beginning of the map. Its name isn't fully legible and only "OURIER TIMES" can be read. The featured issue is dated June ?, 1979 and mentions the Ixtoc I oil spill.

References[edit]

  1. Twitter favicon.png Olly Moss's tweet on Twitter (April 29, 2020)