Every Half-Life game is going free-to-play for a limited time in anticipation of the release of Half-Life: Alyx. Users can go to Steam right now and install Half-Life, Half-Life 2, and Half-Life 2: Episode One and Two to catch up on the series so far.
Steam users received a notification earlier announcing the Half-Life promotion, but the notification appeared to have gone out too early because it soon disappeared. But Valve made the announcement official today in a new blog post.
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“Half-Life: Alyx is coming in March, and we are celebrating early by making all games in the Half-Life Collection FREE to play for Steam users, from now until the day it launches.”
Valve’s blog post indicates that the Half-Life Collection will only be free-to-play for a limited time — until Half-Life: Alyx is released. But that’s still nearly three months to catch up on one of the most critically-acclaimed FPS series in gaming.
Half-Life: Alyx is set before the events of Half-Life 2 and stars Alyx Vance, a main character in Half-Life 2 and its episodes. Unlike the other Half-Life games, Valve’s upcoming title is played entirely in VR.
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Valve says Half-Life: Alyx is comparable in length to Half-Life 2 and that it’s a full-length, single-player adventure. It’s also the first Half-Life game in over a decade. Although Alyx will be playable on several VR headsets, the game’s announcement appears to have driven sales for Valve’s Index VR kit.
Valve’s decision to revisit the Half-Life franchise fueled speculation that the company might revisit other dormant properties like Left 4 Dead, but Valve shot down Left 4 Dead 3 rumors last week.
If you’re also thinking of revisiting the Half-Life franchise before the release of the upcoming VR game, be sure to check out our complete Half-Life 2 Wiki Guide, including both an Episode 1 Walkthrough and Episode 2 Walkthrough.