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Overview

Black Mesa Test-chamber C-33/a
The Black Mesa Research Facility is a private research and defense contractor comprised of a massive complex built within the mountains of New Mexico, and is the setting of the original Half-Life, as well as Half-Life: Opposing Force, Half-Life: Blue Shift, and Half-Life: Decay. Built into and over several decommissioned nuclear missile silos, Black Mesa is the site of broad scientific research relating to theoretical, quantum, and particle physics, applied mathematics, robotics, genetics, biotechnology, trans-dimensional travel, teleportation, and other classified subjects.

In Half-Life, a teleportation experiment at Black Mesa accidentally initiates a dimensional resonance cascade which devastates the complex and leads Gordon Freeman to inadvertently bring Earth to the attention of the Combine Empire.

Structure

Black Mesa is a large facility, and the fastest way of moving between its various sectors is by tram, a small part of which the player (as Gordon Freeman) experiences in the opening sequence of Half-Life. While the majority of the facility is built around some of the most advanced technology on the planet, other parts are shown to be in disrepair, again hinting at the incredible size of the complex. The majority of the facility is composed of test chambers, storage facilities, administrative offices and laboratories, and due to the sensitive nature of the research being conducted, the indoor sections of the complex are maintained at 68 degrees Fahrenheit at all times. Additionally, while players are not able to access the entire facility, they are presented with many key locations, grouped roughly into eight sectors:

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