Bah... my brother tested Halo 2 in detain the last night but the main question is: what's new under the sun?
Nothing. Half-Life 2 is just a 3D shooter with all the latest features in one. Advanced physics, HDR lighting, shaders for everything, etc. But most of all, Half-Life 2 will continue to focus on gameplay.
Anyway, this 'gone gold' message means absolutely zero. It's widely known that the official release is November 26, so now is the perfect time to get it rated and debug it so it turns into 'diamond' before Chrismas. See you then...