It's one thing to see a hand-picked comparison video, it's another to sit down with the real thing ourselves, so I thought I'd fire up the fan-made (but Valve-endorsed) Half-Life 2: Update and see just how improved Valve's classic shooter really is.

If you're looking at character models and faces for big changes, you're looking in the wrong place; most of the progress here has been on things like lighting and backgrounds, which you immediately notice every time you see a reflection, window or even just the sun itself.