Friday, November 22nd 2019

Half-Life: Alyx Officially Revealed, Will Release March 2020

Valve has taken the proverbial wraps off the already-teased, and now revealed, Half Life: Alyx. The latest installment in the Half-Life universe, again, isn't a sequel to the narrative that has been left midway with the ending of Half-Life 2: Episode Two. Instead, it's a prequel of sorts, situated in the 20-year time gap between the original Half-Life and Half-Life 2. It's at this point in the timeline that players will accompany Alyx and her father, Elias, in their fight against the Combine.

Engine-wise, the game will make use of the Source 2 engine, and will be released with accompanying Source 2 tools for worldbuilding, allowing players to design and distribute their own worlds set in this universe. The game will be a single-player, story-driven FPS affair, and will make heavy use of Half-Life's physics interactions. The game is being announced as a full-length game release built from the ground-up for VR - it's not just a VR adventure the development team embarked on, though it did start that way. But let that be for a while: go after the break to watch the game's trailer. I dare you to say this doesn't quite look like your Half-Life dream game.

In an interview with Geoff Keighley, Valve's David Speyrer, Robin Walker and Dario Casali shared some details as to how exactly Half-Life: Alyx came to fruition (it began as an exploration VR game that naturally developed into a Half-Life game with Half-Life models), explained why they chose to develop a prequel to Half-Life 2 instead of taking on the development of a Half-Life 3 (basically, Half-Life 3 has such heavy expectations sen on it that it's just so overwhelming to tackle as a creative project, even if VR is used as a pole around where the entire experience revolves).
They also explained why the game won't have a mouse and keyboard equivalent, as some VR games have shipped with. According to the developers, there are many layers of interaction that VR allows that can't accurately be translated by a mouse and keyboard (that usually happens when there is full body tracking and the player's body is actually rendered into the game, interacting with it in a fully physics-based way, I'd say). The developers talked a while about the simple interaction of opening a door, and in how many ways that can be done in the VR environment: you can push it slightly and peek; you can shove it and spray the entire room with lead; you can open it slightly and throw a grenade. All of these interactions with something as simple as doors meant that for them to be actually translated into a keyboard and mouse game, each would have to be mapped. And we're just talking about ways to interact with doors.


As the game description reads:
"Immerse yourself in deep environmental interactions, puzzle solving, world exploration, and visceral combat.

Lean to aim around a broken wall and under a Barnacle to make an impossible shot. Rummage through shelves to find a healing syringe and some shotgun shells. Manipulate tools to hack alien interfaces. Toss a bottle through a window to distract an enemy. Rip a Headcrab off your face and throw it at a Combine soldier."
Whether or not this is the first VR experience in a new era for the Half-Life universe, we'll have to see; though the developers do say that that will definitely have something to do with the game's reception. Of course, with so little relative players in the VR space, it remains to be seen by what metric the game will be considered a commercial success.
Sources: DSOGaming, DSOGaming
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52 Comments on Half-Life: Alyx Officially Revealed, Will Release March 2020

#1
VulkanBros
Hmmm....It might just be the trigger, for me, buying a VR thingy....find it interesting - from the trailer to judge (My first game was actually Half-Life running on a ATI Rage 128)
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#2
The Quim Reaper
Remember this is Valve, Therefore any release dates given should be regarded as complete & utter BS.
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#3
QUANTUMPHYSICS
Valve should remaster Half Life for modern hardware. Half Life 1 and HL2 with the understanding that there will be a Half Life 3 to make a complete trilogy.


A VR game is what nobody asked for and the take rate is gonna be lower than it would be if it was a regular game.
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#4
IceShroom
The name should be, Half-Life Alyx Search for Half-Life 3 or Fate of Half-Life 3.
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#5
64K
This prequel looks pretty cool right now and maybe if there are definite plans to make a Half-Life: Alyx 2 then I am tempted to get a VR set but remember that Valve doesn't do 3's so 2 will be the end of the run unless they do a Half-Life: Alyx 2 Ep1 and a Half-Life: Alyx 2 Ep2 but those will only be expansions.
QUANTUMPHYSICS
Valve should remaster Half Life for modern hardware. Half Life 1 and HL2 with the understanding that there will be a Half Life 3 to make a complete trilogy.


A VR game is what nobody asked for and the take rate is gonna be lower than it would be if it was a regular game.
I would just be happy with Valve releasing a HL2 Ep3 to finish the story of Gordon Freeman. Ep2 left us on a cliffhanger and that has lowered my opinion of Newell over the years as it became obvious that he didn't care.
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#6
jmcslob
So this is a $400+ game...
Since you need VR which I'm sure a vast majority of people like myself do not own.
I think they think their milkshake will bring all the boys the the yard but I'm like noway retard... Lol
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#7
csendesmark
I hope it will be a yet an other great game!
Also hoping that all the Source-engine games will receive an update to use the Source 2 engine (eventually)
:toast:
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#8
tomc100
VR is starting to become mainstream and essential for immersion, especially for driving sims that make you feel like you are actually in the car. The Star Wars VR is a must have for space sims. Lucasarts or Disney needs to update all their previous space sims like Tie Fighters and X-wing Alliance. Same with Wing Commander series, Freespace series, and the upcoming Star Citizen.
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#9
nickbaldwin86
I will be picking this up. If it is a full Half-Life story... I am all in!
jmcslob
So this is a $400+ game...
Since you need VR which I'm sure a vast majority of people like myself do not own.
I think they think their milkshake will bring all the boys the the yard but I'm like noway retard... Lol
*EDIT* DOH! sorry, read into it to much, or maybe hoping and dreaming they were going to not be only VR

maybe read? they said you don't have to have a VR to play
Posted on Reply
#10
Deathy
jmcslob
So this is a $400+ game...
Since you need VR which I'm sure a vast majority of people like myself do not own.
I think they think their milkshake will bring all the boys the the yard but I'm like noway retard... Lol
More like $1k, since you also need a PC and a monitor or at least a capable laptop. If you want to be a complete idiot about these things.
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#11
cyrand
nickbaldwin86
I will be picking this up. If it is a full Half-Life story... I am all in!



maybe read? they said you don't have to have a VR to play
The artcle and interview says the exact opposite. It a VR only game.
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#12
jmcslob
nickbaldwin86
I will be picking this up. If it is a full Half-Life story... I am all in!



maybe read? they said you don't have to have a VR to play
They also explained why the game won't have a mouse and keyboard equivalent, as some VR games have shipped with. According to the developers, there are many layers of interaction that VR allows that can't accurately be translated by a mouse and keyboard (that usually happens when there is full body tracking and the player's body is actually rendered into the game, interacting with it in a fully physics-based way, I'd say). The developers talked a while about the simple interaction of opening a door, and in how many ways that can be done in the VR environment: you can push it slightly and peek; you can shove it and spray the entire room with lead; you can open it slightly and throw a grenade. All of these interactions with something as simple as doors meant that for them to be actually translated into a keyboard and mouse game, each would have to be mapped. And we're just talking about ways to interact with doors.
No keyboard and mouse support.
Requires VR.
Posted on Reply
#13
TheDeeGee
jmcslob
So this is a $400+ game...
Since you need VR which I'm sure a vast majority of people like myself do not own.
I think they think their milkshake will bring all the boys the the yard but I'm like noway retard... Lol
Don't forget a 2080 Ti.
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#14
DuxCro
I bought Oculus Rift S last month. Best purchase i made in a while. Didn't regret it. And this game will work on it.
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#15
64K
jmcslob
No keyboard and mouse support.
Requires VR.
Not only that but we won't be getting a version that does support mouse and keyboard on down the road. Valve had this to say on the subject:

"We would love to be delivering a version of this that you could play with a mouse and a keyboard. But like as we said, it began as an exploration of VR. The more we used the controllers and the headset, we realized the the amount of interactions this gives, the amount of possibilities these things give us. The more we explored this, the more we realized that there’s so much opportunity that we can’t really translate back to the keyboard.

When you can track your hands separately from your head. They are all 3D space, all simultaneously tracking and moving, you just can’t get that with a mouse and keyboard. And when you put that into game mechanics, the kinds of interactions that we can do now, we couldn’t possibly do with a mouse and keyboard."
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#16
nickbaldwin86
oh DAMN sorry I totally read into that wrong.
The game is being announced as a full-length game release built from the ground-up for VR - it's not just a VR adventure the development team embarked on, though it did start that way.
I thought that was saying they were only going to make it VR but now they are making for all to play and enjoy. :( so never-mind. I am not going to VR just for a single game, I have played on a few different VR setups and didn't like any of them. Something about a monitor being attached to my head just isn't appealing, I game to sit on my skinny a$$ and shoot noobs.
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#17
Chloe Price
Never actually played Half Life games so nothing to except. I have Oculus Rift CV1 but probably not gonna get this.
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#18
Ubersonic
QUANTUMPHYSICS
A VR game is what nobody asked for and the take rate is gonna be lower than it would be if it was a regular game.
Kinda sucks, wait 15 years for a new HL game and it's Gimmick-R, suppose it's fine for the <1% of gamers who have the headsets but I doubt Valve will make back the cost of making this game and that could impact the perceived viability of future HL games :(
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#19
TheDeeGee
They could have sold over a 100 million copies of HL Alyx.

Instead they're not even gonna hit 5 million.
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#20
Arct1c0n
Non VR playable = fvck off Valve.
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#21
Splinterdog
In the interview, it was twice mentioned that VR is used by a minority - a very low percentage of players - so my feeling is that they'll probably see the sales results and think again.
It looks gorgeous in Source 2, so at least we may have more hope than we have had over the years, that a Half Life game for everyone, may in fact happen, rather than being a pipe dream.
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#22
Omwe
QUANTUMPHYSICS
Valve should remaster Half Life for modern hardware.
Remasters are for weak, unimaginative, playing-it-safe publishers/studios.
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#23
64K
Splinterdog
In the interview, it was twice mentioned that VR is used by a minority - a very low percentage of players - so my feeling is that they'll probably see the sales results and think again.
It looks gorgeous in Source 2, so at least we may have more hope than we have had over the years, that a Half Life game for everyone, may in fact happen, rather than being a pipe dream.
What I keep hearing and the Steam Hardware Survey says as well, about 1% of gamers have a VR set. Valve knows this and they probably don't expect to make a profit on this game. It's likely that they will lose money. They are pushing VR for whatever reason but making money off of this game isn't the reason.
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#24
dinmaster
maybe since a lot of these assets are made, it would be easier to make a non vr possibly (i dare say it) half life 3 game from all the art, music, voice, etc. just speculation but would make some sense from a cost side of it. its nice to see valve getting back into development of fps games at least in some way. They have source 2 but haven't done much with it and i'm not counting that crap card game and the conversions from source 1 to source 2.
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#25
Vayra86
64K
What I keep hearing and the Steam Hardware Survey says as well, about 1% of gamers have a VR set. Valve knows this and they probably don't expect to make a profit on this game. It's likely that they will lose money. They are pushing VR for whatever reason but making money off of this game isn't the reason.
Don't forget about the EGS/Steam marketshare battle because that is Valve's core business right now. Remember how Steam gained its share... This timing is not coincidental, hell we damn well predicted it about 100 times.
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