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Valve Dev Reveals Why Half-Life: Alyx is a VR Game

Half-Life: Alyx marks not only the first entry in the franchise since 2007's Half-Life 2: Episode 2, but it's also the first as a virtual reality title in the sci-fi FPS. A recent interview with a Valve employee reveals the process that built up to developing this anticipated game into the world of VR.

Screenshot of Half-Life: Alyx gameplay (Credit: Valve)

Yesterday, March 3, a valve developer named Robin Walker spoke to Game Informer in an interview about the first entry in the Half-Life series since 2007, Half-Life: Alyx, and how it became a VR title rather than a normal FPS like the other games.

“Something that became clear was that, as much as experiences like The Lab are exciting in that they point toward some of the possible breadth of VR, there were a lot of players who wanted experiences that were more ambitious in scope and depth as well – games we would understand as full-scale triple-A experiences,” Walker said. “We thought we were in a position to help provide that. Now, four years later, there are a lot more developers who share these goals, and we’re hoping games like Half-Life: Alyx continue to encourage that even further.”

To test the possibility of Half-Life fitting for VR, a prototype was made consisting of mechanics from Half-Life 2. The sci-fi FPS fit well due to its core gameplay, giving Alyx a chance.

Valve has laid back on its game development for a while now but has pushed forward in technology. In 2015, the company released the now deceased Steam controller. Since then, the Valve Index has opened up significant progress in the world of virtual reality due to its headset tracking system and controllers that allow for finger movement when playing. Now with a new follow-up to the beloved sci-fi franchise and a statement in 2018 from founder Gabe Newell, the Washington based studio will make more games in the future.

Half-Life: Alyx is coming to PC (Steam) on March 23. Pre-ordering will get you a 10% discount off the $59.99 price tag.

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