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Half-Life 2 RTS mod Lambda Wars launches after 13 years in development

Modders started making it way back in 2007

Way back in 2007, Alec Meer (RPS in peace) played a promising RTS mod for Half-life 2. "It's a ton of fun to see the familiar in such a different and well-considered format," he said. "But it's very, very early, with a lot of work to go."

And a whole lot of work it was - 13 years of it. But over the weekend, Lambda Wars finally launched in full, inviting players to explore the world of Half-life 2 from a new perspective (that is: a strategic top-down one).

Lambda Wars is a free standalone mod set in the HL2 universe, and based off of the code for Valve's 2010 top-down shooter, Alien Swarm. It sees players take up the mantle of Resistance commander or Combine overlord in singleplayer, co-op and multiplayer modes, and swaps out the game's first-person battles for real-time strategy skirmishes.

Released over the weekend, version 1.0 brings four new units - Heavy Rebels, Heavy Combines, Cran Synths and Mortar Synths - new buildings and a load of bug fixes and balance changes, which you can check out in the patch notes.

In a post on Reddit, one of the modders mentions that the team have received a few donations for making the mod over the years, but it's mostly been a "free time" project for them: "We've had discussions about finding forms of funding, but ultimately we decided to keep it as a passion project".

"It has been one hell of a journey and hopefully it will bring some joy to Half-Life and RTS players," they add.

If you fancy giving Lambda Wars a try, you can grab it for free on Steam right now.

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