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A softlock is an unwanted event that can happen to speedrunners where triggers and events are hit out of order, causing the games script to break completely, and further game progression to be impossible. Anyone who plans to run any GoldSrc/Source games should know when and where they occur, as not to ruin their run.
At the end of 'We've got Hostiles', Gordon reaches the security room, and upon approaching the door, it automatically switches state from closed to open. If a player attempts to do the NPC Abuse trick in this map, hitting the trigger will switch the door from open to closed, trapping the player in the room.
In order to prevent this softlock, the player must kill the scientist when he's in the doorway, preventing the door from fully closing.