Gordon Freeman, Gnome Ranger Revisited.

Tuesday, August 12, 2008
I wanted to go back to the Gnome Chomsky saga for a moment. Mostly I just wanted to ruminate on what sort of implications of my behavior in the game world.

Try to picture yourself as a member of the Resistance. You've been fighting against the ruthless, orwellian Combine Empire for years. Most of your friends are dead, you hide in caves and abandoned industrial complexes crawling with hostile creatures like headcrabs and antlions. Recently your ever diminishing spirits have been lifted by the return of Gordon Freeman, the hero of Black Mesa, savior of the human race.

You know he's struck a serious blow to the Combine with the destruction of the Citadel. You can see the ruins of the tower in the distance. Looking out over the horizon, you feel real hope for the first time in years. You've received word that Dr. Freeman himself is on his way in the company of Alex Vance. Your excitement grows when you hear he's been spotted on the outskirts of the base.

Finally you see him in the distance driving towards you in the restored car from the southern industrial base. You can hardly believe he's so close. A legend, a bastion of hope and courage. The car stops suddenly and you can make out Dr. Freeman picking up something from off the ground. He places it in the car and continues towards you. Then, having travelled scarcely a hundred feet, he stops again, the strange object having tumbled from the car. Once more he picks it up and places it back in the car.

This is repeated several more times before he reaches your position. What vital object could he be carrying? Surely something vital to the Resistance. Why else would something be entrusted to his care. Your heart begins to race as Dr. Freeman stops the car in front of you. He and Alex get out and Dr. Freeman picks up the object from the back of the car. As he walks past you, you finally see the strange object he has been so carefully looking after. It's a gnome.

A gnome? Gordon Freeman has come all this way with a gnome? The stoic hero, the messianic warrior, the man who single handedly destroyed the Combine's grip on the human race is a gnome enthusiast? What else haven't they told you? How many other aspects of this man have been concealed from you? Is he really a genius? Did he knowingly stop the Combine's plans or did he just Forrest Gump his way through it all?

As he disappears through the doorway, you feel empty. All your hope, your dreams had been placed on the shoulders of a man willing to bare only gnomes. Heroes are rarely what they seem. Maybe the Combine was right...