After twelve long years, Valve is finally giving us a new Half-Life game in the form of a VR exclusive later this month, but the question still remains: where the heck is Half-Life 3?
Game Informer decided to beat that dead (?) horse during a recent interview with Valve’s Robin Walker (programmer on Half-Life: Alyx), and while he wouldn’t address that question directly, he did have some good news for franchise fans. More Half-Life games are definitely on the way.
Game Informer: What would you like to say to fans who are hoping this means you’re still working on Half-Life 3?
Robin Walker: Half-Life means a lot to us, and it’s been incredibly rewarding to re-familiarize 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.
One of the bigger questions is whether Valve’s future Half-Life titles will mark a return to the franchise’s classic roots, but that seems unlikely. Walker said that the shooter’s mechanics were “a surprisingly natural fit for VR,” which implies that it’ll be staying in that world.
“VR has opened up a lot of new avenues to expand Half-Life’s existing framework as well as introduce plenty of brand-new ideas, but those underlying bones are unmistakable,” explained Walker. “Even mechanics in Half-Life: Alyx that are directly lifted from traditional first-person shooters and that don’t require a fundamental rethink, like aiming and firing a pistol, end up having a very unique feeling in VR.”
Valve released three brand-new gameplay videos of Half-Life: Alyx this week that demonstrate the different ways in which players can move around in the game’s VR environments. These “locomotion” options comprise Teleport, Shift, and Continuous.
The first video demonstrates the “Teleport” style, which, as the name implies, lets players jump from place to place instantaneously.
Next up is the “Continuous” style. This option lets players move around in a more traditional fashion.
Lastly, we have the “Shift” style. This is similar to “Teleport,” but with a rushing effect instead of a screen fade.
Half-Life: Alyx will be released later this month on March 23, 2020.