As Half-Existence: Alyx launches, Valve talks about what happened to Half-Existence 3
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As Half-Existence: Alyx launches, Valve talks about what happened to Half-Existence 3

Detached no longer confirmed —

Is a legal sequel ever coming? And will it be another VR peculiar?

Kyle Orland

  • The opening shot ofHalf-Existence: Alyx, as captured from real gameplay. Anything I captured while playing will appear in portrait orientation, due to how SteamVR image captures work. Any landscape images are supplied by Valve.

  • Whereas you are up right here, marvel at the metropolis sprawling all around you, and play with the nearby radio.

  • Also, examine this feat of strength. This narrative battle between Alyx and a can…

  • …would no longer stop smartly for the can. (All VR controllers can squeeze the can, nonetheless simplest the Valve Index Controllers assist you to carry out so by pressing its “grip sensor” firmly.)

  • It is hard to carry in a screenshot how jarring it is far to examine this Strider stomp via your line of leer.

  • Incoming call for Alyx.

  • Making pals, part one: c’mere, pigeon!

  • Making pals, part two: are you hungry, li’l fella?

  • Now not too long after this balcony sequence, prepare to board… wait for it… a train.

This week’s launch ofHalf-Existence: Alyxmarks the primary new release in theHalf-Existencecollection since late 2007. However despite smartly over a decade of promises from Valve for a legal sequel,Alyx‘s prequel storyline detached leaves us hanging onHalf-Existence 2: Episode 2‘s long-dangling cliffhanger ending.

So now that Valve has confirmed it can actually make aHalf-Existencegame again, why hasn’t it been able to make one with a “3” in the title? IGN delved into that demand with Valve staffers in a fresh interview that presents as detailed an answer as we now have but seen.

Back to the ’00s

The history goes back to 2004, the top of a six-year span that saw Valve developingHalf-Existence 2and its Source game engine at the same time. That lengthy, parallel pattern of engine and game was difficult ample that the company has found it by no means wants to repeat it, according to veteran Valve degree designer Dario Casali. “I think our main takeaway from that is ‘get some stable expertise and then manufacture a game on top of it,'” he told IGN.

With the Source engine carried out, the idea was to avoid another long wait for a legalHalf-Existence 3by using the engine and existing resources on smaller “episodic” add-ons.Episode 1in 2006 andEpisode 2in 2007 proved that developmental theory may perhaps work. For the planned “Episode 3,” although, Casali said, “We found ourselves creeping ever forward toward ‘Well, let’s correct keeping putting extra and extra, and extra, and extra stuff in this game because we want to make it as correct as we can, and then we realized these episodes are turning extra into sequels.”

At that point, you’d think “Episode 3” may perhaps have easily became into a stout-fledgedHalf-Existence 3note-up with out great anguish. However for a utterly new game treasure that, Valve would want to spin further than even a feature-creeped episode may perhaps.

Half-Existencegames are supposed to solve interesting problems,” Valve co-founder Gabe Newell told IGN in a separate interview. Valve would no longer correct want to “crankHalf-Existencetitles out because it helps us make the quarterly numbers,” he said. Casali added that, for a newHalf-Existencegame, they’d be “looking for what is going to make that next spacious impact.”

Plus, by 2008, Valve was already turning its sights toward upgrades to the aging Source engine. Remembering the pain ofHalf-Existence 2‘s concurrent game-and-engine co-pattern, Valve made up our minds to wait for work on the Source 2 engine to be executed prior to it started in on a real “spacious impact”Half-Existencesequel, Casali said.

However Source 2 would no longer be ready for top time till 2015, whenDota 2became the primary Valve title to be fully ported to the brand new engine. And the five years since then? They’ve largely been taken up byHalf-Existence: Alyx, a game that Valve says took a stout four years to get.

What now?

And thus right here we are, Roughly 16 years after the launch ofHalf-Existence 2, with out a stout-fledgedHalf-Existence 3. However with all that now out of the way, is Valve ready to actually note up on the story ofHalf-Existence 2: Episode 2?

Valve’s Robin Walker confirmed earlier this month that the company thinksAlyxis “no longer the top” of the franchise. And in a fresh interview with PC Gamer, longtime Valve scribe Eric Wolpaw said he’s worked up and “ready to sign up for the following one” now that the longHalf-Existencedrought is finally over.

May well that futureHalf-Existencepossibly be another VR peculiar? Casali was noncommittal on that demand when talking to PC Gamer, saying that “the ideal thing we can carry out at this point is to gauge the response to [Alyx]. How are folks able to get pleasure from it? How many folks can we get into the VR platform? [Are] folks saying that VR is now this essential part ofHalf-Existence? We really originate no longer know these answers till we put the game out and we start listening.”

Alyx‘s success or failure will also probably assist determine Valve’s larger interest in virtual reality pattern going forward. Bear in mind three years ago, when Valve promised it was working on three “stout [VR] games, no longer experiments.” In a new interview with UploadVR, Valve’s Greg Coomer revealed that work on the assorted two promised titles (aside fromAlyx) has stalled utterly.

“All the resources for VR game pattern later in the cycle, duringAlyx’s pattern, all of these resources obtained moved ontoAlyx,” Coomer told the space. “So at the moment, no, there aren’t three assorted titles in pattern. However as for what’s coming, we don’t really have something new or newsworthy for you to say…”

If a VR peculiar as spacious asHalf-Existence: Alyxcan’t transfer the expertise past its fresh relative niche status in the game industry, there may perhaps no longer be great point in Valve throwing extra resources at the theory that in the near time frame. So maybe it be no longer that surprising that, as Coomer told UploadVR, “We haven’t made actually any plans about [VR].”

Listing image by Valve