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User reviews:
Overwhelmingly Positive (945 reviews) - 95% of the 945 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Overwhelmingly Positive (34,202 reviews) - 96% of the 34,202 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Nov 16, 2004

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

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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 (945 reviews)
Overwhelmingly Positive (34,202 reviews)
Recently Posted
Gundos Mann
( 0.4 hrs on record )
Posted: June 29
I died because I didn't pick up a can.


Half-Life 3 Confirmed.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 0.9 hrs on record )
Posted: June 29
It's the best single-player video game I've ever played on Steam.It has the best graphics for a PC game,made from 2004.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 32.3 hrs on record )
Posted: June 29
This is Half-Life 2 !
Where Half-Life 3 ?
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 10.9 hrs on record )
Posted: June 29
-Good story
-Good graphics
-Cool and original game mechanics


Verdict: 11/10, best game ever, buy or i will find you and make you buy it.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 26.2 hrs on record )
Posted: June 29
Why are you still the latest game in the series? Hodor, please let Half Life 3 go trough the door.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Alexander the Littlee
( 15.2 hrs on record )
Posted: June 28
This game just defined the fps genre back in 2004, innovative, breath-taking masterpiece. You just can't afford to miss it, if you still haven't played it... you just have to fix it maaan!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 14.4 hrs on record )
Posted: June 28
I like Jordan Freeman
Helpful? Yes No Funny
KillerShrinpy :o
( 5.9 hrs on record )
Posted: June 28
HALF of my LIFE is spent playing 2 much games ( not really )
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 1.7 hrs on record )
Posted: June 28
Played this game several times, never grew tired of it. Loved the levels, the gravity gun is one of the best weapons ever, and you don't really need a powerful PC to play it. One of the best PC games of all time. Calling it!
Helpful? Yes No Funny
( 2.0 hrs on record )
Posted: June 28
As someone who has not played the first Half-Life, and thus does not have any nostalgic association with it, I must say that the extremely positive reviews of this game are not what I encountered with my 2 hours of gameplay.

The graphics, physics, and gameplay are all excellent for a game created in its time; maybe so much effort has been put in them that the game lacks elsewhere. The level layouts are extremely annoying to deal with since there isn't a waypoint telling you where to go. Often at times I found myself walking down a dead-end hallway finding nothing but a half-life symbol and some ammo. Furthermore, there are little switches and levers located in the most bizarre areas that require some parkour to reach. My issue with level layouts continues since pretty much all of the shootouts I had with the NPCs in my 2 hour bout occurred with my enemies always having the high ground; you always have to look up to shoot. Looking up may not sound too annoying when read in plain text, but what I’m talking about here is like standing down in the sewer shooting up at the open manhole while enemies drop explosive barrels down at you (which does happen btw).

Overall, the game is a cakewalk with good graphic, great physics, and a seemingly interesting story, but it’s the level design, lack of player direction, and unnecessary jumping on pipes to get to a hidden level that makes me want to give a thumb down to the game.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
50 of 58 people (86%) 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
57 of 71 people (80%) 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
40 of 45 people (89%) 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
43 of 53 people (81%) found this review helpful
17 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
15 of 15 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
19 of 23 people (83%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
6.1 hrs on record
Posted: May 30
The best FPS of 21st century
It seems as if you only just arrived. You've done a great deal in a small time span.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
24 of 36 people (67%) found this review helpful
10 people found this review funny
14.7 hrs on record
Posted: May 29
Before Half-Life 2 : Why do people want Half-Life 3 so much?

After : I can see clearly now the rain is gone!

If no HL3 : I hate valve valve sucks

Maybe Valve are just saving up the 3s for a big reveal, who knows. :P
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
27 of 42 people (64%) found this review helpful
32 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
6 of 6 people (100%) found this review helpful
16.5 hrs on record
Posted: June 22
Make Half Life 3 Gaben
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
7 of 8 people (88%) 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