It’s not Half-Life 3, but it might be just as good.
Cards on the table: I didn’t really get into Half-Life as a series until a few years ago. I had The Orange Box for my 360 when I was in middle school, but I only cared about Portal and Team Fortress 2. When I finally blitzed through all the Half-Life games and reached the end of Half-Life 2 Episode 2, I finally gained an inkling as to why people want another game so badly. Well, it’s taken over a decade, but it seems like Valve finally cleaned their ears out and heard the peoples’ pleas, because at long last, we’re getting a new Half-Life. In VR.
Valve’s new Half-Life project, Half-Life: Alyx, is a prequel to the game’s current story, taking place between Half-Life and Half-Life 2. It’s for this reason that you’re playing as Alyx Vance rather than the infamous Gordon Freeman, who was busy floating around the multiverse at the time. The Combine occupation of Earth is just starting, and Alyx and her father Eli have begun building a human resistance.
In addition to the usual pistols and rifles, Alyx can utilize the Gravity Gloves, a successor (or, I guess, precursor) to the Gravity Gun, to manipulate the environment with Half-Life‘s trademark physics system. Apparently, the game will feature a lot of minute detail that can only be achieved through the medium of VR; leaning around walls to take tough shots, scrounging through junk piles for usable items, and physically ripping headcrabs off your face are just a few things you’ll be doing.
The devs have stressed that Half-Life: Alyx is not a tech demo or fancy toy. This game is, for all intents and purposes, the next entry in the series, and is expected to have a length roughly similar to Half-Life 2. You’ll only be able to play it through VR, but thankfully, any headset will do; it doesn’t have to be a Steam VR one.
Half-Life: Alyx will release some time in March of 2020. You can already pre-order the game on Steam (as well as watch the trailer) for $53.99. If you happen to own a Valve Index VR headset, then lucky you, because you’re getting it for free.