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The subject matter of this article contains in-development information that was cut from the final version of an official and/or canonical source and appears in no other canonical source. It may also contain incomplete information since not all cut material is publicly known.

Style riverbed03.jpg
Game information
  • styleguide_riverbed
  • styleguide_riverbed2

Riverbed is a location featured in two style guide maps included in the Android port of Half-Life 2: Episode One. It was created in February 2006,[1] according to VMF files leaked in March 2017.[2]


The location appears to be based on the earliest versions of Episode Two's intro sequence with the train crash on top of a bridge, as well as being similar to the Victory Mine valley featured in the retail map ep2_outland_05. It consists of large, dried up shores, steep cliffsides, tall train bridges, a small mining facility with a drain pipe leading down to the riverbed, a climbable pile of fallen rocks, and dense forests.

Behind the scenes[edit]

Given the maps' file names, lack of any gameplay features and map cut-offs on the edges of the skybox, the location was presumably created as a point of reference - a style guide - for level designers of Episode Two, meant to be viewed from a number of selected perspectives.

The maps show some minor visual features never used in the Half-Life series: scrolling cloud textures, scrolling "river edge" textures, and rain particles, along with sound effects, which were only previously featured in the Source Particle Benchmark; of note is that the background menu texture of the benchmark appears to show an updated version of Riverbed, only with different trees. The mountainous skybox texture, noteworthy for not featuring the solitary snow peak seen in Episode Two even though the setting would suggest otherwise, has been reused from the final level of Episode One.


List of appearances[edit]

Main games[edit]



  1. styleguide_riverbed and styleguide_riverbed2, editorbuild value (3403)
  2. The leaked maps of the Half-Life 2 episodes - part 1 on ValveTime

External links[edit]