Considering how long we’ve been waiting for a new Half-Life game, I can’t quite believe I’m about to write these words, but here goes. Half-Life: Alyx will be launching on Steam in just 38 days, available to play on March 23.
To be entirely fair to Valve, the company had been promising a March release date for some time, but the tendency of big triple-A games to slip combined with the general mythos around the long lost Half-Life franchise still had us secretly expecting the worst.
The company added that pre-order bonuses for those who bought a Valve Index will begin to roll out on the week of March 2.
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Assuming Valve’s new release date is accurate – and there’s no reason to suspect it isn’t this close to go time – then there will have been 12 years, five months and 18 days between Alyx’s arrival and the release of the last Half-Life game.
The elephant in the room, of course, is that comparatively few people will be able to play a game that has enormous expectations on its figurative shoulders. That’s because it’s a PC VR exclusive, and those with Vive, Oculus Rift or Index headsets remain firmly in the minority.
If it being entirely in virtual reality sets off alarm bells, it shouldn’t: Valve is promising that Alyx will be of a similar length to previous entries in the series, so this won’t just be a bunch of Half-Life themed minigames. You can get a feeling for the kind of game we’re looking at from the trailer below.
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The confirmation of Alyx’s official release date means that the countdown has begun on your free access to the rest of the Half-Life series. Back in January, Valve made all the games free to play in the build up to the prequel’s arrival. So if you haven’t played them yet, then you’d best get cracking – it takes around 35 hours to beat all of them, so you just need to set aside 54 minutes per day to be done in time…