All About Combine Road

Everything you need to know, wrapped up in a little nutshell

Combine Road is a 5-track parody album, using Half-Life, and all its incredible details, as inspiration.

A "parody" is a song that is created to mock, comment on, or poke fun at an original work, in this case the Half-Life games.

Combine Road has been created by Jonathan Lewis and Phillip Marlowe.

Phillip first thought of the concept as a Christmas album, using classic Christmas carols, but with Jonathan on board it was decided to branch out into varying musical styles.

The name is inspired by Abbey Road by The Beatles.


Here are the tracks...

Episode 3's Just Fine As A Concept

This is a parody of The Middle by Jimmy Eat World, originally released in 2002. You can see the video here: YouTube

"If you're anything like me, you've played through the Half Life game countless times using upcoming releases as another excuse to replay the entire series and devour any news about the next installment you can get. Well, given the anticipation surrounding the release of Episode 3, the extra long wait we've been going through and Valve's infamous reputation for meeting release dates the theme of this song just seemed to fit." - Jonathan

I teach games development and my students are all potentially the next generation of games developers, whether in 3D modelling, texturing, animating or programming. You may have an interest within the games industry that relates to the above areas but I'm sure one question rattles around in your mind..... "do I have what it takes to succeed in the ever growing and competitive Games Industry?"

The obvious answer would be "YES OF COURSE YOU DO!"

Now while that may be true on the most part, in this article I will explain as honestly as I can how difficult it can be and how to make it easier for yourself. There are two routes to get into the games industry and I will explain both below.

Route 1: Education and Qualifications.

We all know the importance of getting through education with sparkling colours and top marks and that in fact is VITAL. With a good grade in your CV you get looked at as a candidate, on the other hand if you hold a low graded qualification then your application may not even get looked at. This is not only valid across the games industry but across ANY industry. Better grades equal better prospects for a better job...END OF!

It is not good enough to just scrape through education, it is not good enough to just THINK that everything will turn out fine and that you will find a job in the games industry because you hold 'a' qualification. You have to want to BE THE BEST, it's as simple as that. You have to be determined, focussed, prepared to dedicate hours into creating the best possible work, push yourself to the limit and then some.

Back to the point of creating the best possible work that you can... Well it's simple isn't it? Potential employers in the games industry will always look for a good portfolio, in fact they will look for an OUTSTANDING portfolio. You need to demonstrate that you can stick within a poly count, if applying for a character modelling job you must show that you understand human anatomy and the human figure. Also that you can texture well because a model can be great but can be let down with a badly painted and stretching texture. The same applies for applying for a concept artist job, you need to show that you understand the human figure, that you can shade well, understand lighting and shadows, and also the composition of an environment/scene. So from THIS point you should always create your work with the intention of including it into your portfolio. With that mindset you will automatically show an extra desire to create work of better quality and finesse, I mean after all it could be seen by potential employers so you need to feel that bit of pressure.

As long as you stay along those lines your portfolio should be heading along the correct lines.

Route 2: Without Qualifications

Now with me being a lecturer in games development I could say that attempting to gain employment in the games industry without a qualification is plan stupid. Now on most parts that is true, but there is a small grey area where you may be considered. What you would have to do is read through the portfolio guidelines mentioned above and dedicate your life to them, so to speak. In simple terms you must have an absolutely OUTSTANDING portfolio demonstrating a vast number of assets/characters using creativity and flair. You need to shine, stand out, sell yourself as the best.

This is by no means the recommended way to do it, but I just thought it was important that it is not impossible to go down this route, it's just DAMN HARD!

You should always seek feedback on your work from colleagues, peers, friends or family. Feedback is great because it provides you with areas that you may not see that require developing. There are some great online forums that allow you to post your work up for feedback. There are a vast number of professionals that love to share their knowledge with up and coming designers. Don't be afraid of getting your work slated or 'torn to bits' as forum members will only look to provide constructive criticism.


I will keep this short, if you wish to gain employment in the games industry it is HIGHLY recommended to gain a qualification in the field (I'm talking about University here!). If you don't hold a qualification (and in fact this applies even if you do hold a qualification) then you have to work extra hard to create work that is as close to perfection as possible. Make use of normal maps to add additional detail to your models and demonstrate that you can use a variety of different skills. Don't forget that there will be hundreds if not thousands of other hopefuls applying for the same job so you have to push yourself to stand out, create work that makes use of many techniques and to shine like a beacon to the games studios.... you need to make them think "WE NEED THIS GUY/GIRL WORKING FOR US".

At the end of the day you will get out as much as you put in, so if you're lazy and expect a job to fall on your lap then think again, but if you're hard working, determined and create good looking work then you have every chance of getting into the games industry.


Learn the Skills to Become a Games 3D Artist at [http://3dstep.co.uk]

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Jayesh_Ranavaya/1273258

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LYRICS: Jonathan Lewis
MUSIC: Jonathan Lewis
VOCALIST: Kyle Woods

Freeman Or Handyman? You Decide

This is a parody of Russians by Sting, originally released in 1985. You can see the video here: YouTube

"I've always liked this song because it actually had an important message. My rewrite isn't so deep, but it has the idea that some scientists don't really like Gordon. Originally, it was written with one Breen in mind, but Jonathan added the idea of a group of scientists rather than Breen and it works better." - Phillip

Handymen services aren't just for small repairs or jobs around the house. Call on a handyman service in your area for your next home remodeling project.

When we think of handy man services, our minds often go to routine home maintenance work like cleaning gutters or tackling a paint job. However, as home repair and construction professionals, handymen also have the comprehensive experience necessary to take on larger renovation or remodeling projects. Whether you need to re-do your kitchen or spruce up your family room, your local home handy man (or woman) is on call to serve your remodeling needs. There are somethings that you need to realise can't be done by a handyman. Electricity and electrical works around the home or office should be carried out by licensed electrician.

One thing that would require an 24 hour service, would be a power loss situation in the middle of the night. This is something most people would not know about and would only find out in the morning after, but if it happens while you are awake and need to have your power restored, then a twenty four hour electrician or after hours electrician is someone you will need to call. Aussie Electrical and Plumbing are a team that could help in such an emergency. This is doubly urgent if your business was to lose power and possible the loss of stock or food could be very expensive indeed. So those in the Sydney area, requiring a 24 hour emergency electrician would do well to call them when needed.

At some point, you will most likely want to revamp at least one section of your house, if not several. You may need to remodel a space to accommodate an aspect of your life that's changed or shifted, such as the arrival of a new baby or a change in your or a family member's mobility. Or, you may just need an aesthetic boost so that you can fully enjoy spending time at home again. Whatever your situation, handyman services in your area can help you out. These professionals are usually able to undertake the following types of projects, and more:

* Bathroom Remodeling

* Kitchen Remodeling

* Counter-top Installation

* Cabinet Installation

* Crown Molding Fitting

* Floor Tile Repair/Installation

* Handicap Ramp Creation

* Skylight Repair and Installation

* Stair, Step, and Railing Construction

* Doorway Widening

No matter what you want, be it a total overhaul of your space or a few cosmetic adjustments, your local handyman should be able to make it happen.

When it gets right down to it, your local handyman has the tools and experience necessary to do many of the remodeling jobs you might normally associate with hiring a general contractor. If you get into excavations or major construction, hiring a contractor is certainly the way to go, but a handyman can tackle much more than basic touch-ups when it comes to home maintenance and renovation. In fact, knowing the ins and outs of a range of different home improvement areas, like it is here on the Northern Beaches handyman is part of a handyman's job description. From carpentry to plumbing to wiring, most handymen will be able to field the tasks involved in the majority of renovation projects, so you don't have to spend money on more services than you actually need.

The next time that you want to add a feature to your home or to reinvent the look of a particular space, consider calling on your area handyman services for assistance. Handymen can handle more than just the basics when it comes to remodeling and renovations, and can help you get the home you want without breaking the bank.

Penny Jones is a DIY home repair enthusiast and an Internet marketer for Prospect Genius, a leader in local online advertising.

Article Source: http://EzineArticles.com/expert/Penny_Q_Jones/1265376

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LYRICS: Phillip Marlowe
MUSIC: Jonathan Lewis
VOCALIST: Kyle Woods

My Combine Bride

This is a parody of I Will Survive by Gloria Gaynor, originally released in 1978. You can see the video here: YouTube

"I've always enjoyed exploring a character's idiosyncrasy's and then twisting them for humor. Dr. Breen, with his cool demeanor in the face of human genocide and creepily close relationship with the Combine made a love story much to tempting to ignore." - Jonathan

LYRICS: Jonathan Lewis
MUSIC: Jonathan Lewis
VOCALIST: Kyle Woods

Kinky Doctor Kleiner

This is a parody of Dirty Diana by Michael Jackson, originally released in 1988. You can see the video here: YouTube

"There's something a little creepy about Kleiner and this song alludes to a certain side of his character. My original version was more direct but Jonathan came to the litigation rescue and made some subtle changes that "hints" at things rather than pushing them in your face." - Phillip

LYRICS: Phillip Marlowe
MUSIC: Jonathan Lewis
VOCALIST: Kyle Woods

You ain't Nothing But a headcrab

This is a parody of Hound Dog by Elvis Presley, originally released in 1956. You can see the video here: YouTube

"I got the idea from Larmarr, which is Doctor Kleiner's pet Headcrab. I thought it would be funny to imagine Kleiner running around the lab in Black Mesa East impersonating Elvis." - Phillip

LYRICS: Phillip Marlowe
MUSIC: Jonathan Lewis
VOCALIST: Jonathan Lewis (Phillip tried but really sucked eggs!)

Jonathan Lewis

Jonathan is a songwriter and composer who's work has been featured online, in video games and on the radio. Jonathan's work with the Half Life community began when he released the song G-Man's Last Breath on his blog, an international hit and humorous take on the secret that ties the Half Life story together.

The song's success led to Jonathan's involvement in music composition for mods, the Left 4 Dead themed song "Blow Like Hurricane," and the Half Life parody album "Combine Road" among other projects.

Phillip Marlowe

Phillip is a minor, C-list celebrity within the Half-Life community. He runs PlanetPhillip.Com, which is a review and database site covering single player combat-style maps and mods for the Half-Life series of games.

He has also contributed to a number of released and unreleased mods with voice acting and story writing.

His ultimate gaming dream is to make and release Blaze Bolden, a total conversion for Source.

Contact Us

We'd love to hear what you have to say about our work, so just email us: [email protected]

If our schedules allow we will attempt to make you laugh again by making the Christmas album and ruining such timeless classics as "I'm dreaming of a Combine Slaughter", "Headcrab Bells" and many more.