Published: Wed, January 22, 2020
Electronics | By Kelly Massey

Complete Half-Life Series is free to play until Alyx is released - PC

Complete Half-Life Series is free to play until Alyx is released - PC

Not only that, as an added way to ring in the long-awaited sequel, this new collection will apparently be free to play (not necessarily free to own) "until [the] launch of Half-Life: Alyx". You know, some of these really are quite good.

"Half-Life: Alyx is set before the events of Half-Life 2 and the episodes, but the games share characters and story elements", Valve says in the official announcement. Two expansions for the first Half-Life, Opposing Force and Blue Shift also appear to be free to play for two months, even if not listed as part of the announcement.

The games that are now available for free download are: Half-Life, Half-Life 2, Half Life: Episode One and Half-Life Episode Two.

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Unfortunately, it doesn't include the superior Portal games which, while not explicitly Half-Life games, most exist within the same universe. Valve's blog post has links for the lot.

Sadly the wonderful (and definitely-in-the-Half-Life-universe) Portal and Portal 2 aren't included, but you can't have everything, eh? At the very least, it's probably worth playing through Half-Life 2 again so that Alyx, which is set before Gordon Freeman arrived in City 17, will make sense to you. I sympathise with pals who've come to Half-Life late and bounced off the first. Thus, the old games are being made available for everyone to play for free before the release of the new game so that players can get maximum enjoyment out of the new game.

Half-Life fans eager to get their hands-on Half-Life: Alyx coming out as a VR exclusive in March have a great opportunity to refamiliarize themselves with the franchise ahead of its launch.

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