HL2 Lost Coast screens

It's all gone HDR.

UK hardware review site Bit-Tech, home to old-school Eurogamer staffer Geoff Richards [woo! - Ed], has some spanky new screens from Half Life 2: Lost Coast up, plus an interview with Valve's Doug Lombardi. You can check it all out here.

The article focuses on Lost Coast's use of High Dynamic Range, some kind of crazy new graphics tool that "facilitates the use of colour values way outside the normal range" to do pictures what look like they're real, basically.

"If you have ever driven through a dark tunnel in your car, and then emerged out the other side into blazing sunshine, temporarily blinded by the difference in light levels - that over-saturation is one example of what is possible with HDR," Geoff reminds us.

That particular feature is called Exposure Control, apparently, and can be demonstrated in Lost Coast "by turning Gordon to the right, facing the wall: with the sunny doorway out of our field of vision, the aperture widens and our eyes adjust to the dark, revealing extra detail on the floor and walls of the tunnel.

"Turn again to peer out the door, and you'll find yourself wincing involuntarily at the light, and wishing Gordon had brought his sunglasses," Geoff adds.

You'll be able to download Lost Coast for free via Steam, but there's still no word on an exact date - "Right now we're looking at some time in July," Lombardi told Bit-Tech. Fingers crossed.

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