Esteemed game developer and platform holder of the most popular PC gaming client Valve shared interesting insight into the company’s plans for the future of their premier franchise Half-Life. According to an interview with Gameinformer, the talented folks at Valve view the upcoming VR exclusive title only as a return to the franchise.
Half-Life has long gone to become synonymous with PC gaming in general. And that’s despite the long-standing franchise regularly appearing on consoles throughout it’s more than 20-year life. That’s because the series started out as a firm PC shooter that revolutionized the genre on the PC. Before the first entry made its debut in 1998, FPS games were regularly fast-paced affairs with labyrinthian level design and very little focus on the narrative makeup.
Valve shook this formula with a heavy emphasis on a believable world, immersion and scripted events. The later in particular has become a must in modern games and is used almost everywhere to portray dynamic and life-like game experiences.
Half-Life means a lot to us, and it’s been incredibly rewarding to refamiliarize ourselves with its characters, setting, and mechanics. There are Half-Life: Alyx team members who have been at Valve since Half-Life 2, and quite a few who go back to the original Half-Life. There are also people on the team for whom Half-Life: Alyx is their first time working on this series at all – and many of them certainly hope it’s not the last. We absolutely see Half-Life: Alyx as our return to this world, not the end of it.
But Valve managed to even top this monumental success with 2004’s Half-Life 2 by featuring the earliest implementations of meaningful physics simulation and the introduction of Steam itself. The now de facto PC gaming client to beat. But for being one of the most prominent gaming franchises, the developer seemingly stopped caring about new entries after the nerve-wracking cliffhanger ending of HL2: Episode 2 in 2007. Ever since the franchise became the poster child for unfulfilled gamers’ wishes.
Despite a brilliant fan remake with Black Mesa, fans were eagerly hoping for a proper sequel and last year, their prayers were heard. With Half-Life: Alyx, the series is once again returning but as a full VR game. Naturally, not everyone was happy but a new interview with Valve hints that the developer doesn’t see Alyx as a one-off but instead hopes it to be just the start of the return.