We knew thanks to various teases from Valve that Half-Life: Alyx was coming, but today was the game's official unveiling to the world. In case you weren't sure, Half-Life: Alyx is a new VR game for the Steam VR platform that promises to be a new, full-length AAA quality VR game.
The first thing to note is when and where the game will be set. Half: Life Alyx will see Alyx Vance and her dad, Eli Vance, form the resistance that features in a prequel ot Half-Life 2, and will feature familar looking environments and enemies, including the combine.
The game will apparently cover all the staples of the series, including puzzles, exploration, and of course, first person shooter combat. The game will be roughly the same length as Half-Life 2, according to designer Greg Coomer, which is great to hear.
The issue of course is that, as I mentioned in the last article, accessibility to the game is unfortunately limited to those who can afford the requisite VR setup and don't get knocked sick by using it. I say this every experience I've had with VR, while awesome, has made me uncontrollably queasy within 10 minutes, forcing me to stop playing.
Gabe Newell has said that VR has "energized" Valve, which presumably is what has prompted them into actually making AAA quality games again, even if they are VR exclusive. The game is free for Index users, incidentally, so it's clearly designed to be bait to lure people into the platform, and maybe kickstart it, rather than an attempt to sell well in and of itself.
Will it work? Well, it remains to be seen, but the nausea issue I mentioned above is very real for a lot of folks. I honestly wonder if it's a big cause in VR's success being somewhat limited so far.
The game is due to release in March 2020, and will be available for all VR headsets, not just Index, which is nice (although as I mention, Index users get the game for free) - and while it's not Half-Life 3, it's looking pretty awesome.
I'm looking forward to seeing James play through it, at least.