Made by Gearbox Software and originally released in 2001 as an add-on to Half-Life, Blue Shift is a return to the Black Mesa Research Facility in which you play as Barney Calhoun, the security guard sidekick who helped Gordon out of so many sticky situations.
User reviews: Very Positive (1,143 reviews)
Release Date: Jun 1, 2001

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Buy Half-Life: Blue Shift

Packages that include this game

Buy Half-Life 1 Anthology

Includes 4 items: Half-Life, Half-Life: Blue Shift, Half-Life: Opposing Force, Team Fortress Classic

Buy Half-Life Complete

Includes 10 items: Half-Life, Half-Life 2, Half-Life 2: Deathmatch, Half-Life 2: Episode One, Half-Life 2: Episode Two, Half-Life 2: Lost Coast, Half-Life: Blue Shift, Half-Life: Opposing Force, Half-Life: Source, Team Fortress Classic

Buy Valve Complete Pack

Includes 24 items: Counter-Strike: Global Offensive, Portal 2, Left 4 Dead 2, Left 4 Dead, Portal, Team Fortress 2, Team Fortress Classic, Counter-Strike: Source, Counter-Strike, Counter-Strike: Condition Zero, Day of Defeat, Day of Defeat: Source, Half-Life 2, Half-Life 2: Deathmatch, Half-Life 2: Lost Coast, Half-Life 2: Episode One, Half-Life 2: Episode Two, Half-Life, Half-Life: Blue Shift, Half-Life: Opposing Force, Half-Life Deathmatch: Source, Half-Life: Source, Ricochet, Deathmatch Classic

 

Recommended By Curators

"Play as Barney Calhoun on the second expansion to Half-Life. If you enjoyed the storytelling and environment of the original, this one is for you."

About This Game

Made by Gearbox Software and originally released in 2001 as an add-on to Half-Life, Blue Shift is a return to the Black Mesa Research Facility in which you play as Barney Calhoun, the security guard sidekick who helped Gordon out of so many sticky situations.

System Requirements

Windows
Mac OS X
SteamOS + Linux

    Minimum: 500 mhz processor, 96mb ram, 16mb video card, Windows XP, Mouse, Keyboard, Internet Connection

    Recommended: 800 mhz processor, 128mb ram, 32mb+ video card, Windows XP, Mouse, Keyboard, Internet Connection

    Minimum: OS X Snow Leopard 10.6.3, 1GB RAM, 4GB Hard Drive Space,NVIDIA GeForce 8 or higher, ATI X1600 or higher, or Intel HD 3000 or higher Mouse, Keyboard, Internet Connection
    Minimum: Linux Ubuntu 12.04, Dual-core from Intel or AMD at 2.8 GHz, 1GB Memory, nVidia GeForce 8600/9600GT, ATI/AMD Radeaon HD2600/3600 (Graphic Drivers: nVidia 310, AMD 12.11), OpenGL 2.1, 4GB Hard Drive Space, OpenAL Compatible Sound Card
Helpful customer reviews
195 of 199 people (98%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
6.3 hrs on record
Posted: November 9, 2014
The cupcake version of Half-Life.
Play as Barney Calhoun and show United States Marines, Black Ops Ninjas, and inter-dimensional mutants that real badasses wear ties and make $26,000 a year.
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99 of 105 people (94%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
3.7 hrs on record
Posted: October 24, 2014
You get to play as a mute security guard who wrecks havoc upon firearms specialists and aliens from an alternative dimension with a crowbar, and owes a mute theoretical physicist a pint.
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43 of 46 people (93%) found this review helpful
0.1 hrs on record
Posted: September 30, 2014
Blue shift is, practically, any decrease in wavelength. Oh, wait, it is also the expansion pack (the 2nd one) for the critically acclaimed game Half Life! And this one was also developed by Gearbox. Interestingly, it came more than a year after Opposing Force, the 1st expansion pack, and while that one packed a punch, Blue Shift did not really offer anything new.

So, there is no real new content here: no new weapons, enemies or new music. But! It is Half Life! And also, you control Barney! The security officer who was bashing the door when you were riding the train with Gordon in the base game.

And this is why I liked in Opposing Force, as well. How the new protagonist's story was connected to that of Gordon. You could see a familiar locale in the distance (when in the helicopter in the beginning) or the aforementioned example of the security guard.

In any case, while Blue Shift did not really offer anything new (graphics-wise it came with a neat high-res texture pack, though), it offered the same cool atmosphere we loved Half Life for.

Blue Shift is a short but all the more entertaining ride! Highly recommended to all Half Life fans!
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37 of 41 people (90%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
4.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 15, 2014
I always get the weirdest shifts...
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22 of 23 people (96%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
3.0 hrs on record
Posted: January 19
TL:DR? See Conclusion

NOTE:
Also see my Half-Life (1) Review:
http://steamcommunity.com/id/miyumiayase/recommended/70

And my Half-Life: Opposing Force Review:
http://steamcommunity.com/id/miyumiayase/recommended/50

INTRODUCTION:
Half-Life: Blue Shift is a first-person action game by Gearbox Software and Valve and serves as the third official expansion to the Half-Life franchise. Unlike Half-Life or Half-Life: Opposing Force, Blue Shift does not introduce new game mechanics; rather, it offers a new type of narrative storytelling through constant interactions with an NPC character (i.e., Dr. Rosenberg).

In this game, you step into the shoes of Black Mesa Security Guard and Clone Template Barney Calhoun, a man whose normal routine of offering beers and guarding doors is shattered with a catastrophic accident that opens the facility to an alien invasion and U.S. Military intervention (a direct result of Dr. Freeman's experiment from the first game). As Barney Calhoun, you try to survive the alien invasion, protect the survivors, and escape the now doomed Black Mesa Research Facility.

PROS:
+ Good story (NO SPOILERS) that serves as the 'final link' that connects every story (Half-Life, Half-Life: Opposing Force and Half-Life: Decay) of the Black Mesa Incident together.
+ Constant interaction with an NPC that is essential to the plot rather than for opening doors
+ The first game in the franchise to introduce 'HD' content during its time
+ Intense action as can be expected from a Half-Life game
+ Satisfying puzzles
+ Adaptive enemy AI, especially with the soldiers
+ Great level design
+ Barney can kill dangerous aliens and highly trained military soldiers wearing only a flak vest and an almost transparent plastic helmet as protection (He would be perfect in the Warhammer 40,000 universe as an Imperial Guardsman).

CONS:
- VERY SHORT and possibly the shortest game I ever played with only 3 hours of playtime on Hard Mode and Training Tutorial
- Existence of bugs despite being 14 years old (Particularly a bug where you're unable to move)
- No new weapons, enemy, or gameplay mechanics.
- Most weapons from the first game were removed
- Relatively easy (even on hard mode) as compared to the other games. In my opinion, it is because acquiring 'armor' and health kits are a lot easier.

CONCLUSION:
Story and lore wise, Blue Shift is GOOD but other than that, it does not offer any new content aside from the new player perspective of the overall Half-Life Lore. In my opinion, Blue Shift is not an expansion but more of a DLC (downloadable content) than anything else, which is not a bad thing by the way, especially one with a good story and fun action sequences.

So do you buy Blue Shift? YES but DO NOT BUY Blue Shift alone! Instead, purchase Half-Life Anthology if you already have Half-Life 2 or get Half-Life Complete.

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16 of 16 people (100%) found this review helpful
3.6 hrs on record
Posted: February 21
Half Life 1 was a fantastic first person shooting game released somewhere around 1999. This Blue Shift is the second rather dull expansion pack for Half Life 1. To be blunt, the first expansion Opposing Force is better, because it offers more guns, new gameplay mechanics and a lot of new monsters. Blue Shift however offers nothing new except new levels that will take you under 4 hours to complete the first time around.

Blue Shift takes you through Black Mesa and Xen once again when everything goes wrong and aliens invade. You start the expansion riding the tram to work (just like Half Life 1) after taking an optional training course that is literally the same training course from Half Life 1.

The gameplay is more challenging than the original game in both good and bad ways. The good way is the game shows off its artificial intelligence by pitting you... Barney Calhoun, a blue shift security guard at Black Mesa, against hundreds of marines sent into the Black Mesa facility. Usually you fight 10 marines at a time in wide open areas. The enemies will scatter when you throw grenades, run away from you, try to flank you and fan out so you're not shooting enemies like dominos.

The negative ways that the expansion is challenging comes from several dark areas with dozens of head crabs jumping at you around every turn. It feels cheap compared to Half Life 1 and Opposing Force.

There are a few shining lights for this expansion and that is rescuing scientists, although it's not much of a rescue, because any of them can die and it doesn't matter. The expansion also dabbles in having an important character Dr. Rosenburg that you will rescue and he will guide you to the end of the expansion. Guide you as in briefly tell you what to do through believable voice acting.

In all this is a lackluster expansion compared to the previous one and feels more like a level pack... without levels, just one continuous game. Chances are you can get this expansion with one of the deluxe Half Life 1 games, so save some money and get Blue Shift there instead.
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16 of 17 people (94%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
2.2 hrs on record
Posted: October 19, 2014
You should really only play this if you like Half-Life. You play as Barney, one of the disposable security guards that you killed for their ammo after they were of no use to you in Half-Life's single player. The campaign is short; it took me about 3 hours to complete. There is no multiplayer, there are no new weapons, no new enemies, and only a handful of new characters. This is like Opposing Force in that it's a new perspective on Half-Life's story, but that's it.

Recommended only if you like Half-Life's story.
7/10
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16 of 18 people (89%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
3.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 10, 2014
If you would like to see the world of Half Life as one of those pathetic security guards that help you open a door and then you just murder them with a crowbar, play this!

It's just like playing Half Life, but with less story. I played it just because I want to know every little detail in Half Life, and I must say it is probably the worst Half Life game (But all Half Life games are amazing, so this one is amazing too).

Yeah, buy it.. or just get it in the Half Life Complete Pack.
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14 of 16 people (88%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
0.7 hrs on record
Posted: January 17
Exactly the same as Half-Life but through the eyes of a security officer, and you can see Gordon Freeman in third person.
The story of this game is a little different because you play as a different person. Really neet and cool.
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15 of 19 people (79%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
2.2 hrs on record
Posted: December 11, 2014
Pibb Xtra

I DRINK THAT

Bunnyhopping

I do that

Blue Shift

I PLAY THAT
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10 of 10 people (100%) found this review helpful
5.3 hrs on record
Posted: October 15, 2014
This game is short and sweet. It retells the early parts of Half-Life's story from a different perspective. This game is more Half-Life with extra story elements; do not expect anything more.

If one plans on playing both expansions, play this one first. Otherwise, one may feel underwhelmed by this game after playing Opposing Force.
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8 of 8 people (100%) found this review helpful
5.3 hrs on record
Posted: October 5, 2014
Half-Life: Blue Shift gives the player a different view in someone else's eyes in the Black Mesa Research Facility incident. It was interesting to see what this character saw what happened during the craziness of the incident. Anywho it was quick, short and sweet but a really cool side-story game! Play this game if you're interested in a Half Life game with a different character view!
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18 of 27 people (67%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
0.1 hrs on record
Posted: November 2, 2014
Pre-Release Review
How to make Black Mesa a better workplace : Give the fat policeman his donut or he will shoot you!

Rating:
7.0
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6 of 6 people (100%) found this review helpful
25.8 hrs on record
Posted: October 9, 2014
It maybe not as good as the the orignal or OpFor but it's another perspective of the game.
I don't even care that it doesn't introduce new weapons and Sh*t it still gives me the vibes and awesome feelings as the previous games!!!
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6 of 6 people (100%) found this review helpful
4.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 8, 2014
Good addon for the best First Person Shooter ever!
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8 of 10 people (80%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
0.9 hrs on record
Posted: September 30, 2014
if you go into third person, you are actually Gordon Freeman
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4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
4.3 hrs on record
Posted: February 7
Best part of the game: Watching Gordon get dragged by the two grunts whose heads I'd love to smash with a brick.

Not because the game is bad and that's the best it offered. Just because I love when games/sagas or, in this case, the expansions of a game connect with each other in such direct ways.

Blue Shift was pretty good. Incredibly short, it takes the average gamer four hours on Hard (I presume) to beat, but it was good nonetheless. You simply would expect more from a franchise with an assload of long, and sometimes, very challenging chapters. They didn't add anything new in this expansion (as in guns or creatures), but it's not a bad thing from a storyline standpoint, since the game takes place on Black Mesa, near the same sectors you're in when you play as Gordon in Half-Life. The only "complaint", I'd say, is that the game was very short. But I enjoyed it, seeing things through Calhoun's eyes (I love Barney, got a damn crush on him) was interesting, and some parts were very well made and well thought-out. Not going to spoil for those who want to play, but to those who have played it: Chapter 6, "Power Struggle". Dynamite detonator box. Barrel on a corner to your right. You played the game; you might understand.

I recommend it, but only if you have played Half-Life. I doubt you'll enjoy it if you haven't played it. Quite the contrary, I think you'd find it dull. So buy it and play it if you want some more of Half-Life in the Black Mesa Facility.
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3 of 3 people (100%) found this review helpful
20.2 hrs on record
Posted: December 5, 2014
Goodies and oldies can never be interesting enough!

Blue Shift is taking the player back during the Black Mesa Incident. You are Barney, a security guard who's trying to figure out what's going on and trying to survive. And yes, your that the same Barney with the guy who helps Gordon Freeman from Half Life 2! :)

The game is pretty good and interesting for its time. A great add on to the Half Life franchise.

It has all the cool things the first HL game had to offer (great FPS action, nice setting, spooky survival situations), and it's missing all the irritating things HL used to have (puzzling paths where you can lose yourself and wonder what your objective really is).



If you are a HL fan, the chances you haven't played this is slim, but if so, totally go for it.

If you are not a fan but are thinking about entering the HL world, then there's no doubt this titles is gonna add more to the fun of the first games :)
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
2.6 hrs on record
Posted: January 4
Pre-Release Review
Blue Shift is the second and last Half-Life expansions. This puts you in Barney's, the police officer, shoes. Again, same as with Opposing Force you are caught in the same storyline as Gordon Freeman from the original Half-Life. You will see Gordon Freeman once or twice, to help you get your bearings on where you are within the timeline of the original game, similar to Opposing Forces. This game is short, simple and doesn't add much more to the original game or the first expansion. The storyline is mediocre at best, but since this is a Half-Life game, I must recommend. Just know that if you're not a fan of Half-Life, this game will not be the entertainment that you are looking for that the other Half-Life games will offer.
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
21.1 hrs on record
Posted: September 29, 2014
Half-Life Blue Shift is a small, but hard, game to master. It took me a while to find all the secret areas. Blue shift is a good game to play if you like the Half-Life storyline.
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