Map Review of bridge-the-gap

by GrandmasterJ | May 21, 2023 | 4860 characters

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We have two versions of the same level, the original and a 2.0 rework. The bsp files are differentiated via underscores but nowhere on the map page does it say which one is which. So let me tell you right now the one with the underscores is the 2.0 rework and I can tell by the motd that comes with it. We played the 2.0 rework seriously and then came back and quickly cheated through the original to compare the two.

The map itself is a pretty standard walkthrough experience with locked doors opening to reveal shortcuts throughout the map. It is a conversion of a mod so it has survival mode on as well. In the 2.0 rework I turned survival mode off and died later in the map and I respawned with all the weapons I had collected up until that point. So survival mode may be on by default but the map converter has definitely added some love in there for servers full of lemmings like me. There was also a message in the beginning that 2 players were detected and the map increased difficulty as a result.

We start with no weapons and no medkit, we get a nice view of the gap and the bridge we must use to, uh, bridge it. Then we get attacked by headcrabs we must run by since we have no weapons. Eventually we do get it and our next enemy is a barnacle. We do eventually get a shotgun, mp5, and pistol (in that order, weird) but early on the map definitely feels like it is bullying the players. Even after we get solid weapons the ammo in the map is pretty scarce, I ran out of all ammo and had to run around with a crowbar and suicide to get my guns back. Spawning and difficulty may have been adjusted for multiplayer but the ammo feels like it hasn't. There is tons of armor around though.

The gameplay is all standard stuff, see an enemy and shoot it. There are many buttons to press and at one point we had to press a button to ride a crane carrying some blue geometry. The most annoying part was an elevator shaft with a ladder, but at one point the ladder has no ledge so we have to jump at it and if we miss we can take fall damage. That was annoying and not fun, it wasn't present in the original.

So I've been talking about the rework this whole time but what about the original? It looks like the original author rebuilt the entire map from scratch. The level layout, the puzzles, the enemies, and the whole concept is the same but with a whole new look and in some cases a bit of a twist. Like there was a fan we had to turn off, in the original it is a button in a room but in the rework it is TWO buttons in a room! Plus it can be toggled! With the exception of the annoying elevator shaft ladder the changes aren't a big deal.

The biggest difference between the maps is visually. We played the first one which was fairly well lit but looked like standard Black Mesa fare. There were some nice details and intricacies to the level geometry that was pretty good looking. The original is much simpler and more blocky but has much more dramatic and dark lighting. It also doesn't really feel like Black Mesa, my teammate and I were comparing the atmosphere to things like the archives level of Goldeneye for the N64 or Nova Prospekt from Half-Life 2. I don't really know which one looks better and I think they both have good points.

Bridge the Gap was a quick little jaunt through Black Mesa. The lack of medkit, scarcity of ammo (though I will say there was a lot of armor), and intro where we had to flee from stupid headcrabs dragged down what is otherwise a very solid map. The ladder section was a bad choice as well. I did like the map and had fun, but with so many options to choose from I don't know why I would pick the one with the annoying intro. A lot of work went into converting this for Sven Co-op, at least the rework, and it shows. I especially enjoyed how we respawned with all the weapons we picked up before, cutting out a lot of busywork. One last thing to note, when we finished the map the server ended, weird. When we finish the original map we get sent to the 2.0 rework, so beware having this on a server because that won't end well.


  • Lots of support for conversion to Sven, I especially like repsawning with the weapons we picked up
  • both the original and rework look really good
  • shortcuts open up in the level
  • lots of HEV around


  • we don't spawn with weapons and then we have to run past headcrabs, very annoying
  • the ladder in the elevator shaft in the remake was a bad addition
  • the original map will switch to the remake and the remake will flat out end the server
  • lack of ammo, I ran out a lot
Score: 7.5 / 10
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