|This article is about a mod.
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FakeFactory's Cinematic Mod (often abbreviated as CM), also simply known as Cinematic Mod, is a mod that aims to improve Half-Life 2 and its episodes, and push the Source engine capabilities as far as possible. It was created and is developed by a 48 year old (as of 2015) German IT-service-business employee, Jürgen Vierheilig, aka FakeFactory. The current version is Cinematic Mod 2013 Final 1.24.
Cinematic Mod adds cinematic effects, new music (mostly consisting of several tracks from the Batman Begins trailers), new sounds, new physics effects, HD textures, custom HD models, jiggle bone effects to female characters, modified weapon strength, etc. to Half-Life 2 and its episodes. The new Alyx model, introduced in Version 5, is based on Brazilian model Adriana Lima. The more recent versions make the maps richer in terms of atmosphere, and features many new models (such as more vegetation, or many more shipwrecks along the Coast).
The new music and HD models are optional, allowing to play a simply "improved" game. The "Character Pimper" was introduced in Version 5 when players were complaining about not being able to play with the real look of the original characters.
Vierheilig states that his mod was never planned as a community project. He merely shares what he created as a practice exercise while he was learning modeling, texturing, and coding.
After the release of version 13, FakeFactory stated that this would be the last version of the cinematic mod. The limits of the Source Engine would be reached, and the development of CM13 had become a burden to him. He'd finish version 13 and say "goodbye for some time".
Cinematic Mod is not without some criticism from the community. While some praise Vierheilig's work, many argue that his new HD character models are poorly made, unrealistic, and out of place in the Half-Life 2 universe, that the new music is inappropriate for the Half-Life 2 universe, or that some textures are inappropriate. When the latest patch to Version 5 was released, Vierheilig stated that it would be the last version, since he had grown extremely disappointed and tired by the criticism and bashing of his work. He argued that his mod was free and that he owed nothing to the community, and that he did not understand why gamers were complaining about features that were optional, i.e. the new music and models.