Valve has announced that the latest release of their Source Engine SDK has been released and that it now includes full support for the Oculus Rift Virtual Reality head mounted display.

Source: The Half Life 2 Engine

Valve have been at the forefront of support for the Oculus Rift since the beginning. We broke the story of Team Fortress 2 and its new ‘VR Mode’ back in March and since then other games based on their proprietary engine, specifically the Half Life 2 series of games.

With this release, developers get what they’ve been screaming for, the ability to develop games or update their existing projects based on the Source engine with full Virtual Reality support. This means that, along with Unity and UDK, developers now have yet another option to start building their games with minimal or no expense at all. Fully-fledged games that grew out of the modding community, such as the hugely popular Garry’s Mod now also have the opportunity to add VR support, adding to Oculus’ rapidly growing portfolio of Rift-ready experiences.

The full press release from Valve is below:

We have released an update to the Source SDK, bringing support for Mac OS X and Linux to mod developers and exposing the ability for virtual reality support in your mod. The biggest change with this update is that we are using github to host the source code. You will find the code here. This Source SDK 2013 release also includes a new license that can be foundhere. This new license allows mod authors to share their changes to the SDK more easily.

The other change with the Source SDK is that now Hammer and the other mod tools ship with their respective games instead of as part of the SDK Launcher. The launcher itself is being phased out, so it will disappear from your Tools list. You can find information about how to run the tools from the games here.

The source for this new SDK release includes the latest code for all the included games, and has many new features:
• The games now build and run clients on Windows, OSX, and Linux. Dedicated servers are supported on Windows and Linux.
• Steam Pipe (the new Steam content delivery system) is supported by the sample mods. Existing mods can change their gameinfo.txt to match the new format and gain Steam Pipe support.
• Support for Virtual Reality via the Oculus Rift has been added to the SDK. Running a compatible mod with -vr on the command line will run the mod in stereo and enable head tracking on the Rift.

You can find instructions on getting started with the new Source SDK 2013 on the Valve Developer Community wiki

Newsletter graphic

This article may contain affiliate links. If you click an affiliate link and buy a product we may receive a small commission which helps support the publication. More information.

Based in the UK, Paul has been immersed in interactive entertainment for the best part of 27 years and has followed advances in gaming with a passionate fervour. His obsession with graphical fidelity over the years has had him branded a ‘graphics whore’ (which he views as the highest compliment) more than once and he holds a particular candle for the dream of the ultimate immersive gaming experience. Having followed and been disappointed by the original VR explosion of the 90s, he then founded to follow the new and exciting prospect of the rebirth of VR in products like the Oculus Rift. Paul joined forces with Ben to help build the new Road to VR in preparation for what he sees as VR’s coming of age over the next few years.