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Half-Life: Alyx

Half-Life: Alyx review

The Half-Life game you wanted

122

3 days ago

Steam saw 2.6 million first-time buyers each month last year

Valve have published their 2020 Year In Review for Steam, and I'm a little shocked at how dramatic some of their statistics are. Seeing as we experienced a global pandemic during which everyone locked themselves away in their homes, it may not come as a huge surprise that more people took up gaming to pass the time. Valve say 2.6 million people bought games for…

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2 months ago

Gabe Newell has blasted Gnome Chompski into space

It is done. Gnome Chompski has shot off to where gnome man has gone before. The little red-hatted fella started life as a bit of a joke in Half-Life 2: Episode Two. Players who carried the garden gnome all the way to the end of the game would be awarded with the achievement "Little Rocket Man" - a title old Chompski truly lived up to…

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Take an educational tour of Half-Life: Alyx with new developer commentary tracks

Half-Life: Alyx is a brilliant game. A remarkable return to form for the long-dormant Valve flagship. But there was something crucial missing from the prequel's launch. That's right - I'm talking about those tiny yellow speech bubbles wot let Valve employees whisper sweet development secrets into your ears. Today, those audio tracks return to Valve's VR shooter, not as those iconic yellow bubbles, but as…

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3 months ago

Gabe Newell is shooting a real Gnome Chompski into space for charity

Do you suppose Gabe Newell himself has earned the Half-Life 2: Episode 2 achievement for carrying a garden gnome to the end of the game? He's planning to snag a real-life achievement, apparently, and has partnered up with Rocket Lab to blast a real Gnome Chompski into space. Not for nothing, Newell is planning to donate to Starship Children's Hospital based on the number of folks…

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5 months ago

Speedrunner uses VR to crawl under Half-Life: Alyx levels in real life

Speedrunning often involves a lot of running and jumping but that usually takes place in game, which is impressive enough. During this year's Summer Games Done Quick marathon, Half-Life: Alyx speedrunner "Buffet Time" goes full on gaming athlete by actually crawling on the ground to glitch through floors and walls. It's a feat you really need to see for yourself.

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6 months ago

Here’s Summer Games Done Quick 2020’s online speedrun schedule

Despite being delayed, then later moving entirely online due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic, Summer Games Done Quick is still preparing for some awfully fast gaming next month. The schedule for this year's event has just gone up, kicking off the annual week of charity speedrunning on Sunday, August 16th. Expect your usual bouts of boundary-breaking and donation shouting, of course, but can you really…

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Valve’s list of cancelled games includes a Dark Souls-like RPG, a new Left 4 Dead, and Half-Life 3

Can you imagine a Dark Souls-meets-Monster Hunter RPG made by Valve? I think I would've loved that. Unfortunately, it's on a list of Valve's games that were never meant to be. Of course, Half-Life 3 is sat up on that shelf, too, along with Left 4 Dead 3, and another Half-Life-themed shooter that would've looked very different to what we got with Alyx. It's all…

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The Final Hours Of Half-Life Alyx lets you concoct bespoke alien screams

Thought it may as well have felt as much at the time Half-Life: Alyx didn't pop out of a vacuum. Released today, Half-Life: Alyx - Final Hours is an interactive multimedia docu-book full early prototypes and concepts, deets on what Valve's been up to for the last decade, and a bespoke make-your-own-headcrab-scream audio tool. You know, the usual behind-the-scenes stuff.

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8 months ago

Of course somebody recreated PT as a VR mod for Half-Life: Alyx

Half-Life's always had horror in its veins. From body-horror aliens lurching down steel corridors to Ravenholme's infested nest of parasites, sawblades and the living dead, the series has been pushing spooking with its shooting since day one. Sporting more intimate, high-fidelity spooks, Half-Life: Alyx is no exception - and with a modding kit out in the open, it was only a matter of time 'til…

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Play Half-Life: Alyx as a more traditional shooter in this VR-free mod

Since the moment Half-Life: Alyx launched in VR, folks have been trying to detach it from its headset requirements. To be fair, I get it - that the first Half-Life game in a decade would be restricted to expensive tech felt a little demoralising. But this weekend, one modder brought that dream closer to reality by quietly releasing Pancake Base, a mod that aims to…

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Half-Life: Alyx’s bottles now have sloshing liquid, and it’s a bit magic

Infants have long known the joys of shaking a bottle to watch its contents slosh and bubble, and now Half-Life: Alyx players can experience that joy too. Valve last night updated the VR explore-o-shooter with fancy new mock bottle fluids, and even as someone whose body wholly rejects VR I am captivated watching players play with bottles of booze. It's like a real beer, but…

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Half-Life: Alyx gets proper mod tools and Steam Workshop support

Half-Life and modding are basically synonymous. Whether it's painstakingly remaking the original in Black Mesa or spawning entirely new multiplayer genres in Counter-Strike, Gordon Freeman's misadventures are as much a platform for new works as they are solid shooters in their own rights. This weekend, Valve brought Half-Life: Alyx back into that lineage with Steam Workshop support and the beta release of HL:A's editing tools.

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9 months ago

Half-Life: Alyx’s only melon can’t be eaten without cheats

Hard to imagine worse things to eat while in VR. Do you really want sticky fingers clutching your index controllers, melon juice splashing over your expensive electronics? It's probably for the best, then, that the one watermelon in Half-Life: Alyx is impossible to find in normal play - a sweet, tantalising snack tucked away only for those brave enough to break out the cheats.

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If you didn’t backflip while juggling in Half-Life: Alyx, did you really play it at all?

I was gearing up for a second playthrough of Half-Life: Alyx this weekend. I really wanted to use the physics engine to have a little fun this time around, so I took a peek at some inspirational Let's Plays to see what I could try. Then I uninstalled Alyx and put my headset away. I can't even juggle in the real world, never mind doing…

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If you like a lot of headcrabs, Half-Life: Alyx now has a horde mode mod

The lack of an SDK hasn’t stopped people from working on mods for Half-Life: Alyx. We’ve already had one this week that sort of lets you play the game without VR. Today, I discovered XenThug, a horde mode map that throws an ever-growing number of Half-Life enemies at your face. I’d be playing it right now if I weren’t writing this.

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Now you can beat Half-Life: Alyx without VR thanks to this mod

It was only a matter of time. Shortly after Half-Life: Alyx's release, modders were already tinkering with ways to play Alyx without VR. Now there's a mod that will actually let you complete the game entirely with a regular display, though it sounds like a slightly finicky experience. This likely won't be the end of the road for VR-less Alyx, but it's certainly a milestone.

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Tall Half-Life: Alyx testers struggled with low-hanging pipes, and devs thought it was a bug

Movement is make or break for VR games. A convincing, non-nauseating solution is vital, and Half-Life: Alyx does an admirable job of navigating through that. Valve have explained how they got there, in a new video that brings up sound design, pathing fiddliness, and why they had to ditch a certain system because tall testers kept hitting their virtual heads on low-hanging pipes.

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10 months ago

Look what everyone’s been up to in Half-Life: Alyx

Half-Life: Alyx is so densely packed with trinkets and goodies to fool around with that it seems it was inevitable folks would cook up some gags with the VR props. RPS have decided that it has some of the most satisfying physics in PC games and that's quite clear when you see all the shenanigans folks have been pulling off inside this sandbox masquerading as a…

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Half-Life: Alyx’s level editor “is the team’s focus now”

Sandboxes are made for playing in and it's no wonder players are eager to get their hands dirty. Half-Life: Alyx has some of the most satisfying physics, and the level-editing tools Valve had planned to release with the VR game are sure to inspire some creativity. The Hammer editor didn't launch with Alyx as intended, but a Valve member has shared that it's the team's…

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Watch this Half-Life: Alyx player’s excellent juggling tricks

You've all sat through your Half-Life: Alyx VR maths lesson, right? Good. Time for a treat.YouTuber "ChrisQuitsReality" has put together an impressive performance of bottle-tossing, plate-flipping, grenade-groping and chair-chucking, with the occasional use of Alyx's gravity gloves for added flair. He is a juggling wizard, and you will appreciate him. Unless you really want to avoid mild environment spoilers.

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