Half-Life: Alyx launched on Monday to critical acclaim. The worst part about the game? After waiting so long, it’s over all too soon. But, Valve has left a very significant tease that the game won’t be the last Half-Life VR game.
Before we get started, here’s your SPOILER WARNING. If you haven’t finished Half-Life: Alyx we suggest you read no further, but do be sure to check out wait until after the game’s credits to see a key additional scene.
Still with me? Ok. So you’ve either finished the game already, or aren’t bothered by serious spoilers.
The end of Half-Life: Alyx very significantly changes the ending of Half-Life 2: Episode 2.
G-Man shows Alyx that fateful day in her future and gives her the chance to change the outcome. She does, and prevents the death of her father, Eli Vance.
If you wait out the credits, you return to the scene where Eli was just saved, this time as Gordon Freeman. While at the end of Half-Life 2: Episode 2, Gordon and Alyx were just about to head off to find and destroy the research vessel Borealis, this time Alyx is nowhere in sight. Eli is angry and wants to set off right away apparently to rescue Alyx and hands Gordon his iconic crowbar saying “Come on Gordon, we’ve got work to do.” As the player, you grab the crowbar and hold it for just a brief moment before the scene fades out.
There’s no doubt in my mind that Valve is telling us with this scene that they want to make not just more Half-Life, but specifically more Half-Life in VR… maybe even Half-Life 2: Episode 3, or even Half-Life 3, considering the way they set the stage with this scene.
There was distinct lack of any crowbars in main portion of Half-Life: Alyx itself, and Valve clearly wanted to wait for this scene to give the player the opportunity to hold one. Had they simply wanted to allude to future Half-Life titles not in VR I very much doubt they would have done it this way.
We spoke with Valve ahead of the launch of Half-Life: Alyx and asked it the studio was still working on the other two VR games of the “three full [VR] games” it had confirmed were in development back in 2017. The studio told us that, in fact, there weren’t two other VR games currently in development. Instead, the developers told us that the studio was waiting to see what the public’s reaction to Half-Life: Alyx was before it would commit to more VR games.
Seeing that Half-Life: Alyx has received near universal acclaim from critics, it seems that Valve may be happy enough with the reception to forge ahead with more Half-Life games in VR, but it isn’t ready to say for sure just yet.