So for any of you who fondly remember the Half-Life series but might not be so connected to gaming news ...


The trailer for Half-Life Alyx dropped on the Valve official Youtube channel on November 21, 2019. After twelve years of waiting, hoping, and lonely nights spent speed running playing mods our prayers have been answered. And what an answer it is.

It was clear from the first few moments of the trailer that Half-Life Alyx will be played with a VR headset. Camera movements are indicative of actual head movement, and the protagonist's hands are clearly being controlled by motion sensors. Beyond that the game looks like it's going to present the events of the seven hour war or the days immediately following it and if the voice clips and title are anything to go on Alyx Vance will be the point of view. Game play seems to feature Gravity Gun type gloves that let the player grab small objects as well as acting as the game's hud. Headset aside, the game looks like it's going to stick to the old shooting head crabs and soldiers interspersed with puzzles and atmospheric tunnels and hallways gameplay that we all know and love. The game is set for March 2020.

It's hard to say what this means for the franchise but I'm not going to let that stop me from speculating wildly. The first Half-Life game is the basic template on which all PC FPS shooters are modeled. Half-Life 2 introduce physics into gaming with the Gravity Gun. Both are iconic in that gaming not only looked different after they were released, it felt different. Then two more episodes followed which were basically an extension of Half-Life 2 follow by nothing for more than a decade. Portal 2 came out, Team Fortress 2 kept Valve busy, Steam continued to make money hand over fist. No episode three, no Half-Life 3, a lack of threes so conspicuous it became a meme. Many despaired until now. Why the long wait? I can't say for certain but I suspect that it has to do with what the last two games accomplished. I'd argue that each was a paradigm shift and for Half-Life 3 to come out before now would have made it just another sequel; but now, in the dawn of VR, it has the chance to be the first big FPS for headsets. If I'm right then Half-Life Alyx is Valve testing the waters. If it flops then they know this is not their moment. But if it succeeds ... Half-Life 3 confirmed?

I can hope, alright.

Apologies to anyone for whom this is old and overly hyped news.IRON NODER: WE'LL RUST WHEN WE'RE DEAD

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