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User reviews:
Overwhelmingly Positive (978 reviews) - 95% of the 978 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Overwhelmingly Positive (34,258 reviews) - 96% of the 34,258 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Nov 16, 2004

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Buy Half-Life 2

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Packages that include this game

Buy The Orange Box

Includes 5 items: Half-Life 2, Half-Life 2: Episode One, Half-Life 2: Episode Two, Portal, Team Fortress 2

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Downloadable Content For This Game


Recommended By Curators

"This is the one unmissable game. It’s time to get that cutting-edge PC system. Sell your grandmother, remortgage the cat, do whatever you have to do."
Read the full review here.

About This Game

1998. HALF-LIFE sends a shock through the game industry with its combination of pounding action and continuous, immersive storytelling. Valve's debut title wins more than 50 game-of-the-year awards on its way to being named "Best PC Game Ever" by PC Gamer, and launches a franchise with more than eight million retail units sold worldwide.

NOW. By taking the suspense, challenge and visceral charge of the original, and adding startling new realism and responsiveness, Half-Life 2 opens the door to a world where the player's presence affects everything around him, from the physical environment to the behaviors even the emotions of both friends and enemies.

The player again picks up the crowbar of research scientist Gordon Freeman, who finds himself on an alien-infested Earth being picked to the bone, its resources depleted, its populace dwindling. Freeman is thrust into the unenviable role of rescuing the world from the wrong he unleashed back at Black Mesa. And a lot of people he cares about are counting on him.

The intense, real-time gameplay of Half-Life 2 is made possible only by Source®, Valve's new proprietary engine technology. Source provides major enhancements in:

  • Characters: Advanced facial animation system delivers the most sophisticated in-game characters ever seen. With 40 distinct facial "muscles," human characters convey the full array of human emotion, and respond to the player with fluidity and intelligence.
  • Physics: From pebbles to water to 2-ton trucks respond as expected, as they obey the laws of mass, friction, gravity, and buoyancy.
  • Graphics: Source's shader-based renderer, like the one used at Pixar to create movies such as Toy Story® and Monster's, Inc.®, creates the most beautiful and realistic environments ever seen in a video game.
  • AI: Neither friends nor enemies charge blindly into the fray. They can assess threats, navigate tricky terrain, and fashion weapons from whatever is at hand.
Customer reviews
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Overwhelmingly Positive (978 reviews)
Overwhelmingly Positive (34,258 reviews)
Recently Posted
( 2.3 hrs on record )
Posted: June 30
when is half life 3?
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 15.0 hrs on record )
Posted: June 30
Played through this years ago when first released, rebought this on sale which is an absolute bargain - If you havent played through this then what are you waiting for =)

Worth every penny.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 7.1 hrs on record )
Posted: June 30
A video game that made history
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 21.7 hrs on record )
Posted: June 30
ONE OF THE GREAT GAMES ON STEAM! IF YOU DON'T OWN THIS GAME, Then what are you doing with your life? PLAY IT!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 3.3 hrs on record )
Posted: June 30
Very good game still waiting for hl3 though my fav chapter is Our Benefactors
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 11.5 hrs on record )
Posted: June 30
I was new to the Half-life series before playing half-life 2. After doing so i think that this game has really stood the test of time for being fun and an interesting game years after release. playing this game has sparked interest in buying the first half-life and Half-life 2 episodes 1 and 2.

Overall i would recommend this game to anyone searching for a fun and different first person shooter with a futuristic/syfy twist of aliens and the usual corrupt goverment.

There were several things that i really liked about playing Half-life 2. It had great physics and along with that fun and yet challenging physics puzzles, cool and unique weapons, good mix of horror and gore, last but not least it had a VERY intriguing story line that i cant seem to understand but yet it still only draws me in more.

if i had to nitpick at the game that i just said i'd recommend, it would only be a few things. one being more physics objects to mess around with, not that there were not plenty but more never hurt. Also the ingame loading screens did break the flow even if it was only for a second or two, however i did find it usefull to know i just had an autosave and i could be a little more risky.
The main complaint i have with this game and some how hypocritically it was one of my favorite parts is the story line. So much is left up in the air about everything, i find the absence of the true lore demoralizing yet tantalizing. I plan on buying the other half-life games so i can try and wrap my head around what seems to be an amazing stroy line that they are making me work unnecessarilly hard to uncover.

oh yeah and THE GRAVITY GUN KICKS ♥♥♥
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Heart Eye Emoji
( 9.2 hrs on record )
Posted: June 30
Good quality potato
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 34.6 hrs on record )
Posted: June 30
One of the all time greats. Set the benchmark for FPS and that mark still hasnt been surpassed.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 40.2 hrs on record )
Posted: June 30
One of the best games ever, period!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 10.8 hrs on record )
Posted: June 30

It ends.

Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
53 of 61 people (87%) found this review helpful
6 people found this review funny
23.0 hrs on record
Posted: June 5
If you wanna play some real singleplayer game, buy this 100%.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
46 of 51 people (90%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
21.3 hrs on record
Posted: June 4
Half-Life 2. The video game that started the modern generation on first-person shooters and revamped the gaming history into a new era. Originally released in November 2004, the game won multiple game of the year awards and branched gameplay mechanics, including physics and the state-of-the-art game engine that look realistic during its release date. Many people are aware on the game’s popularity and everlasting legacy including various jokes on the awaiting sequel (for many years), but the question remains: Why is this game popular?

The game takes place after the events from Half-Life. You play as Gordon Freeman, the silent protagonist who got a Ph.D. on theoretical physics at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) and knows how to use weapons very effectively; a strange paradox for a character with such features yet highly popular and well-recognized. You are sent to City 17 by the G-Man, a mysterious person or a phenomenon with a mysterious and ambiguous agenda, to overthrow Wallace Breen and the alien oppressors, the Combine. The setting and lore in the Half-Life universe is simply the best, taking some influence from George Orwell’s 1984 or other famous dystopian novels to set the story in tone. Gordon’s influence and previous actions will spark oppressed citizens in City 17 to take arms and revolt against the Combine. From City 17 to the prison at Nova Prospekt, each setting is unique, bleak, but beautifully designed, the game simply defined what a video game should be.

Each NPCs and major characters such as Doctor Issac Kleiner, Barney Calhoun, and other characters interact realistically among each other and to you. In regards to Alyx Vance, your ally and companion, Valve spawned the concept of AI teammates and became a true asset in your journey to rally up the oppressed citizens. Besides good character developments, the best attribute for Half-Life 2 was physic interactions and the game engine. The game engine is Source, which feature high-dynamic range rendering, facial animations, and “realistic physics”; the first game that had such a feature like this.

Are there criticisms for the game? I believe so, but to be honest, I couldn’t find any legitimate criticisms for the game. If one criticism has to be addressed, then the problem is the loading sections. Yes, those tedious loading that interrupted the “flow” in the middle of a long level or after finishing a series of firefights against Civil Protection or Combine forces. These loading or “checkpoints” really halt the immersion in the game. However, this is very common on all Half-Life games and I hope that Valve would address this (if they are working on the sequel…).

Half-Life 2 is pure gold, shining flawlessly on the test of time. With great graphical fidelity at its time, voice acting and realistic AI interaction from your allies and enemies, this game is a rare exception of genuine perfection and grand role model for other game developers to pursue their own game designs. The only thing Half-Life 2 (and its episodes) is a full fledge sequel. Besides many jokes, anxieties, and waning patience for Valve to announce the sequel, the game should be in every PC gamer’s Steam library. No exception. Half-Life 2 is simply the best; a grand overture that started and defined the modern gaming industry in the present time.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
62 of 78 people (79%) found this review helpful
5 people found this review funny
42.6 hrs on record
Posted: June 7
Basically, it's the best game ever.

Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
47 of 58 people (81%) found this review helpful
22 people found this review funny
25.1 hrs on record
Pre-Release Review
Posted: June 3
Best game ever
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
17 of 17 people (100%) found this review helpful
4 people found this review funny
4.1 hrs on record
Posted: May 30
Groundbreaking, Legendary sci fi FPS that started it all, including the site we're all using!

+ Redefined FPS forever, like its prequel 'Half Life'
+ Semi Dystopian Sci Fi setting
+ Gravity Gun & Physics
+ Amazing story that isn't watched, but EXPERIENCED in gameplay
+ Amazing world craft & level design & lore & atmosphere
+ Still looks good. Graphics stand the test of time
+ Source engine very optimized, runs well on low end hardware

> Make sure to get sequels Episode 1 & 2!
> Episode 3 must've been teleported to Xen world.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
30 of 45 people (67%) found this review helpful
33 people found this review funny
28.3 hrs on record
Posted: June 5
I had a dream of Gaben whispering Half Life 3.......

Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
10 of 10 people (100%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
16.5 hrs on record
Posted: June 22
Make Half Life 3 Gaben
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
12 of 14 people (86%) found this review helpful
13 people found this review funny
13.7 hrs on record
Posted: June 26
Before I played:
\\ _
   \( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)
    < ⌒ヽ
   /   へ\
   /  / \\
   レ ノ   ヽ_つ
  / /
  / /|
 ( (ヽ
 | |、\
 | 丿 \ ⌒)
 | |  ) /
`ノ )  Lノ
After I played:

/フフ         ム`ヽ
/ ノ)  ) ヽ
/ |  ( ͡° ͜ʖ ͡°)ノ⌒(ゝ._,ノ
/ ノ⌒7⌒ヽーく  \ /
丶_ ノ 。   ノ、 。|/
   `ヽ `ー-'_人`ーノ
    丶  ̄ _人'彡)
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
10 of 11 people (91%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
62.8 hrs on record
Posted: June 23
Half-Life 2 Review

Initial Release: November 2004
Platform: Xbox 360, Windows, PlayStation 3, Android, Linux, Mac
Genre: First-Person Shooter, Platformer
Theme: Sci-Fi, Dystopian, Post-Apocalyptic
Singleplayer: Yes.
Local Multiplayer: Unavailable.
Online Multiplayer: Unavailable.
Level/Chapter Selection: Yes.
Estimated Campaign Duration: 6-9 hours.
Third-Party Mod Support/Availability: Yes.
DirectX Version: DirectX 9.0 (supports DirectX 7 & DirectX 8 versions)

+Performance is outstanding on low-end computers.
+Known for it's in-game physics; powered by the Source Engine.
+Voice acting is top-notch. Actors' voices easily fit into their characters' unique personalities.
+Responsive, bindable controls. This includes controller support, as well as mouse acceleration and mouse smoothing.
+Smooth animations. NPCs even appear to move and interact with the environment almost naturally.
+Level Design is great. Environments vary between urban, sand and grass. Levels are either small and tight, or open and expanded, which may allow for more exploring.


I don't like review scores, so I'm going to answer your most important question: do you recommend it? Yes.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
4 of 4 people (100%) found this review helpful
2 people found this review funny
12.4 hrs on record
Posted: June 22
This is one of the best games ever made, you got puzzles mixed in with shooting and one of the coolest weapons/tools in video game history, the Gravity Gun. Let's not forget the story, it's great. The graphics are probably one of the biggest highlights, especially since the game is from 2004. Hard to believe this game is that old!
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