Developers Valve shocked the gaming industry by announcing the latest installment in the long-dormant Half-Life series. Half-Life: Alyx is set to be released in March 2020 and will be the series’ first virtual reality exclusive title. It will be released via Steam and will be compatible with all PC-Based VR headsets including the HTC Vive, Oculus Rift and Valve’s proprietary headset, Valve Index.
Half-Life: Alyx will be a full-length campaign taking place after the Combine invasion of Half-Life 1 and before the return of Gordon Freeman in Half-Life 2. Players will take control of Alyx Vance, the supporting character of Half-Life 2, as she and her father, Eli, mount up a resistance against the invading Combine forces and their brutal occupation of Earth.
VR was built for the kind of gameplay that sits at the heart of Half-Life, and Half-Life: Alyx was built from the ground up for VR. You'll be able to play it on any SteamVR compatible system.
— Valve (@valvesoftware) November 21, 2019
“Everyone at Valve is excited to be returning to the world of Half-Life”, says Valve founder Gabe Newell to The Verge. “VR has energized us. We’ve invested a lot of ourselves in the technology. But we’re also game developers at heart, and to be devoting ourselves to a VR game this ambitious is just as exciting. For that to come in the form of Half-Life feels like the culmination of a lot of things we care a lot about: truly great games, cutting edge technology, and open platforms. We can’t wait for people to experience this.”
Half-Life: Alyx will have the hallmarks of the classic Half-Life series that players fell in love with two decades ago: platforming, world exploration, visceral combat and a gripping narrative interwoven within the iconic Half-Life Universe. Alyx will also be armed with gravity gloves that will help grab things that would otherwise be out of reach. Half-Life: Alyx was built from the ground up for VR on Valve’s Source 2 engine. Players will be able to choose from three different types of setup, whether they want to move around the room, stand in one place or sit down.
Valve is better known these days as the titan retail platform as well as for its Esports titles such as Counter-Strike: GO and DOTA 2. Its initial rise to prominence was through the Half-Life series with the last game, Half-Life 2: Episode 2, released in 2007. Since then, there was constant speculation and anticipation of an installment that would pick up where Episode 2 left off. The idea of the release of Half-Life 3 had become a meme among hopeful fans. The final nail in the coffin was the leak of a script by former Valve writer, Marc Laidlaw, that may have been the planned plot for Half-Life 3. The release of Half-Life: Alyx has reignited the hopes of many fans to get proper closure for the series.
Half-Life: Alyx is currently available for pre-purchase on Steam for $59.99 and owners of the Valve Index VR headset will get it for free.