The final hours of Half-Life: Alyx, Geoff Keighley’s “multimedia experience” on the production of Valve’s big VR shooter, is now live on Steam. The documentary is coming out which promises “an unprecedented and unvarnished look at the past decade inside Valve,” including a look at multiple canceled projects—one of them named Half-Life 3—plus concept art from Alyx and interactive features which includes a “Valve Time” timeline and a head crab SFX mixer.
Half-Life 3 was in development, temporarily, between 2013-14. Valve wanted to combine procedural generation with “crafted experience” to make it more enjoyable, an idea sparked in part by Left 4 Dead. It was eventually halted, though, because the Source 2 engine it was originally created in wasn’t completed.
A few other Half-Life-themed VR projects, which includes one that sounds rather like the Episode 3 synopsis that former Valve writer Marc Laidlaw revealed a few years ago, were also toyed with but eventually canceled, according to an IGN report on the doc, which says that at least five Half-Life projects were introduced and dropped between Episode 2 and Alyx.
Other canceled projects which include an open-world go at Left 4 Dead 3, and Elder Scrolls/Dark Souls-inspired RPG codenamed “RPG,” a Minecraft-style voxel game, and “Vader,” Valve’s original VR headset design, which the developers thought would have sold for around $5000 each.
The teams wants to make an all-new, full Half-Life, but there’s some uncertainty about whether Valve wants to take on a project of that size, or if it’s going to continue to focus on VR for the foreseeable future. But the opportunity is at least on the table. “The ice has been broken, now we’re hoping to smash through the ice completely,” Valve’s Phil Co says. “We’re not afraid of Half-Life no more.”
Half-Life: Alyx – Final Hours is available right now for $10/£7/€8 on Steam, and it does not need a VR headset.