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Half-Life: Alyx, a mod to play without a VR headset available soon?

Half-Life: Alyx,  a mod to play without a VR headset available soon?

When it was officially announced in November 2019, Half-Life: Alyx generated as much enthusiasm as discontent among the players. Many of them had been waiting for a new installment in the Half-Life series, some even for fifteen years, since Half-Life 2 was released in 2004. So, obviously, when it was announced that the game would be exclusively in VR not everyone liked it, which we can understand. Not all players have the necessary hardware, which represents a certain investment.

Faced with this, many players have wondered if a non-VR version of Half-Life: Alyx could be considered by Valve in the future. It seems we finally have an answer to this question. In an interview with VGC, game designer Robin Walker spoke about the possibility of a non-VR mod created by the community for Half-Life: Alyx:

"As a result, what I’m confident will happen is that when people get that butchered version, and they’ll have lost all the things that we’ll have got from moving to VR, they will then understand very clearly why we made that choice. There’s a part of me that’s eager for people to be able to have that experience and realise, ‘oh, now I get it. Now I see everything we lost in that transition back to non-VR and I understand why they did it.’"

Robin Walker does not mince words by going so far as to assert that without VR, Half-Life: Alyx would greatly lose its interest. Admittedly, the bet was daring, but the team seems completely confident about the choices that have been made.

However, that doesn't stop players from hoping to get their hands on such a version someday, and if it's not Valve doing it, players will. And there is one who has already managed to play Half-Life: Alyx without a VR headset. Indeed, Tyler McVicker has managed to play the game with just a keyboard and a mouse using commands normally reserved for developers. This is only the beginning but it should allow modders to work on a non-VR version, even if it is certain that the gaming experience would not be up to what Half-Life: Alyx can offer in its original version.

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