You can now check out perhaps our best look yet at the VR-only Half-Life: Alyx, the next game in Valve’s seminal franchise, thanks to a new video with 13 minutes of uninterrupted gameplay posted by IGN. The video takes the main character Alyx through one of the game’s earlier levels, which was first shown off in a shorter clip on Monday, while Valve’s Robin Walker and Corey Peters and IGN’s Tom Marks discuss what’s going on.
Valve says it considers the level in the video to be the “intro to combat.” It teaches players how to do things like reload their gun, pick up items, and how to fight classic Half-Life enemies like zombies, ceiling-mounted barnacles, and the series’ iconic headcrabs. The game has to teach the player in a very methodical manner because of the new ways to think about movement and combat when playing in VR.
The level is designed with slower enemies to help you learn the game’s mechanics
The Valve employees discuss how this level is primarily designed with slower enemies to give players the chance to learn the game’s mechanics without being too at risk of failing. In one of the player’s first encounters with a zombie, for example, a zombie is spotted from a good distance away, and it slowly ambles straight toward the player while they’re both in a narrow train car.
The situation forces players to learn how to take the enemy down, but there’s plenty of time to do so, and it’s a pretty straight shot. And off to the side, another zombie is reaching through a window, teaching players that enemies may act as distractions — but even if it seems like a threat, it looks as if the zombie can’t actually reach the character.
It’s a cool video, and I recommend you watch it from beginning to end. Walker and Peters provide interesting commentary, and seeing 13 minutes of uninterrupted gameplay really helped me get a grasp on what it might actually feel like to play Half-Life: Alyx when it releases on March 23rd.