Was this a bug or a necessary evil?

I was replaying one of the old Half-Life games (Blue Shift), and I noticed something I never had before. In the Xen levels you find ammo containers that give you varying amounts of ammo set by the level designer. However three weapons are considered their own ammo: the handgrenades, tripmines and satchel charges. (The weapons classed into group Five in your weapon menu, or the ones that you use cheat code give_weapon instead of give_ammo). What I noticed was that the ammo pack only increments your ammo count, and if you don’t already have at least one handgrenade, tripmine or satchel, the ammo pack invisibly increases your “count” of those weapons, but you are still listed as not having that weapon!

Was this simply an oversight that a few lines of code would have corrected, or was it a known but accepted limitation of how those weapons had to be classed to be consistant?

I’m not sure anyone can answer without having access to the code which defines that box. But my bet, looking at similar issues, is that it was a simple oversight rather than an accepted limitation.

Yeah, going strictly on the fact that fixing it would involve one short, easily placed branch that would have added effectively nothing to the game overhead I’d say that it’s an ordinary bug. I’m not privy to insider information on Blue Shift but I’d guess that it was quickly coded and pushed out the door for a deadline. That’s just going by the second tier status in development houses that expansion packs have, though.