Prepping for the release of its latest virtual reality title, Valve announced today that all Half-Life games are free to play on Steam for a limited time. Until the launch of Half-Life: Alyx in March 2020, Steam users will have complete access to Half-Life, Half-Life 2, including both episode 1 and 2.
“Half-Life: Alyx is set before the events of Half-Life 2 and the episodes, but the games share characters and story elements,” writes Valve in a recent blog post. “The Half-Life: Alyx team believes that the best way to enjoy the new game is to play through the old ones, especially Half-Life 2 and the episodes, so we want to make that as easy as possible.”
The Half-Life games are one of the most iconic PC games, and for good reason. The story follows physicist Gordon Freeman in his fight against an alien invasion. The games are known for their exciting gameplay and interesting story. As the latest title in the series was released in 2007, playing them now is certainly not a visually or even mechanically pleasing experience. If, however, you’re planning to play Alyx, it might be worth your while to give these old gems a try.
Over a decade after the release of the last game, Half-Life: Alyx will be the the first game in the franchise to explore virtual reality. The game will be supported on most virtual reality headsets, but Valve recommends their proprietary Index for the best experience. Users currently in possession of an Index, or those who are planning to buy one will receive Half-Life: Alyx for free. If you prefer an alternative, however, you can pre-purchase the upcoming game on Steam for a 10% discount right now.
The Half-Life games regularly go on sale, but if you’ve never played them before, now is the perfect time. Half-Life: Alyx is currently set for a March release window, although no exact date has been specified.