Named Game of the Year by over 50 publications, Valve's debut title blends action and adventure with award-winning technology to create a frighteningly realistic world where players must think to survive. Also includes an exciting multiplayer mode that allows you to play against friends and enemies around the world.
User reviews: Overwhelmingly Positive (5,820 reviews)
Release Date: Nov 8, 1998

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

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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

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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

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Recommended By Curators

"The classic, the one that started it all. In all its late 90's glory."

About This Game

Named Game of the Year by over 50 publications, Valve's debut title blends action and adventure with award-winning technology to create a frighteningly realistic world where players must think to survive. Also includes an exciting multiplayer mode that allows you to play against friends and enemies around the world.

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
386 of 474 people (81%) found this review helpful
15.5 hrs on record
Posted: October 26
Half-Life has 8 letters. (Not counting the -) You write 8 like eight. Eight has 5 letters. 8-5 is 3. Half-Life 3 confirmed.
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129 of 142 people (91%) found this review helpful
5.0 hrs on record
Posted: August 18
What's the first thing that comes to mind, when reviewing a video game? Well, for me, it has to be the visual world that captures the core of our imaginations. And with this little gem called Half-Life, it's no exception that this game continues to boggle the mind and leave people wondering. There is more heart, creativity and scientific ingenuity there is in this one title than there is in most series and is arguably Valve's greatest achievement. (With over 50 game awards, it's a strong justification). Half-Life isn't just one of the greatest FPS games of all time. It's not because Half-Life is one of the best purchases you can ever get on Steam. Half-Life is quite simply, one of the greatest games ever made.

When compared to certain FPS games in the past and modern times, which both heavily rely on long-winded cutscenes to glorify the main plotline, Half-Life annihilates this compulsed aspect, by detailing the plotlines that keeps the player still in control of the first-person viewpoint, leaving the cutscenes rolling while you still have full access to the gameplay and character controllability. For clarification, You will see through the eyes of Gordon Freeman at all times.

The game is a constant puzzle; leaving the player to work at tasks that involve being locked into battle and overall puzzle solving to advance through the many challenges that wait up ahead. Most of the time, the story illuminates the puzzles by the actions to proceed, such as maze scenarios and building boxes to use as staircases. Though Half-Life has short-lived loading screens from time to time after leaving a certain area for a new one, the game has no levels. But, to make up for this traditional concept, the game is split into a number of mind-boggling chapters filled with rich story glory.

To start off with this game's story, you're none other than Gordon Freeman. A young man who holds a Ph.D in theoretical physics who starts his daily grind back at the Black Mesa Research Facility; a fictional complex that is stranded in a remote desert located in the suburbs of New Mexico. Arriving late for work yet again, you take the tram system around the Black Mesa Research Facility and at this point, objectives that his game has fulfilled such as breath-taking visuals and movie quality animation begins to blossom. The tram sequence at the beginning of the game can only be summed up in one word; Incredible. It's as if the things that come flying at you from every angle and position, almost reminiscent of watching an action-packed movie, along with the credits of the producer's names proudly fading in and out on the corner of the screen.

As you make your first step in the heavily secured facility, you're constantly reminded that you put on your Hazardous Enviromental suit, or the H.E.V suit for short. While all things are hunky-dory, those things soon turn to the worst very soon. After a failed experiment, involving a collision between a rare intergalactic specimen from another dimension with an Anti-Mass Spectrometer, the Black Mesa facility falls in ruins, meaning you are one of the only key survivors of the infamous ''Black Mesa Incident''. And with this, alien life-forms from the dimension of ''Xen'' are pulled from their dimension into ours and are running amok the ruined facility, along with the Army that storm the place after the gone, haywired facility's emergency call has been echoed. This of course doesn't make things any easier and you soon find yourself battling both the aliens and army.

While there isn't exactly much to complain about, I would admit that guiding the chickened-out scientists and professors around the facility can be quite a pain now and again, as well as the alien life-form, Vortigaunt, from which you would have to wait and be patient for them to wreck down wooden doors in front of you, as you are not capable of doing that yourself. (You do start off with a crowbar, right?) As well as I'm probably not the only one who made the same mistake by killing them through a small opening, before they did in fact begin to tear down the doors. But then again, this is where the used scripted intermissions started to show, so that's an added bonus.

For the long run, I've had fun and joy both reviewing this amazing game and playing this amazing game. If you haven't play Half-Life and you're not familiar with Half-Life, it's still a massive recommendation from me.
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80 of 88 people (91%) found this review helpful
11.0 hrs on record
Posted: September 1
Do you have a PC? Do you have any interest in gaming? Then you should probably play Half-life. Half-life is one of those games that you kind of have to play before you die. It may not be the timeless masterpiece people make it out to be, but what you do get is a really lengthy game with a strong focus on singleplayer. And when you've finished the original game there's literally hundreds of mods to explore.

Full video review:
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=u7tKUlNLL4w
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99 of 118 people (84%) found this review helpful
5.2 hrs on record
Posted: November 2
What NOT TO DO in Black Mesa :
1. Do not press the alarm button under Barney's desk.
2. Do not read other people's message.
3. Do not mess up with the microwave in the kitchen.

And most IMPORTANTLY :
4. DO NOT PUSH the SAMPLE in the REACTOR!!!!!
Was this review helpful? Yes No
87 of 101 people (86%) found this review helpful
0.9 hrs on record
Posted: October 17
I can't believe we have to wear these ridiculous ties.
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52 of 57 people (91%) found this review helpful
11.5 hrs on record
Posted: October 5
You get to play as a mute theoretical physicist who wrecks havoc upon firearms specialists, and aliens from an alternative dimension with a crowbar.
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65 of 81 people (80%) found this review helpful
6.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 1
This game gave me headcrabs
12/10
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68 of 86 people (79%) found this review helpful
10.8 hrs on record
Posted: October 25
Theoretical Physicist simulator.
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42 of 51 people (82%) found this review helpful
64.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 7
Look son if you dont like this game theres something wrong with you.
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34 of 38 people (89%) found this review helpful
0.1 hrs on record
Posted: September 30
The FPS game. The game that defined a genre 15 years ago. Now with widescreen support, vsync option and hi-res texture pack! No, not HD texture pack, just high-res (released quite long ago so the game still looks dated).

Why do we like Half Life? Because you play an average guy, a scientist, not some spec-ops sir-yes-sir veteran, just one of the common people who finds himself in the middle of a catastrophe and the only way to get out of it is to shoot up some aliens. Oh, and while there, why not go to their planet to blow up the very alien controlling all of them?

I believe this was the game that gave birth to scripted events, or at least made them look very good.

It is an action-packed, amazing game - with some puzzle sequences here and there - that offers roughly 10-15 hours of single player time, if not more. Nowadays, this is very rare.
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27 of 29 people (93%) found this review helpful
23.1 hrs on record
Posted: October 11
The most Influential game of all time. And it's feels as new as it was on the day it ws released November, 17th, 1998 thanks to the HD textures. Also, has one the most revolutionary beginning sequences in gaming by telling a story without B.S. cutscenes and in the player's perspectivre. actually, it;s like that throughtout the entire game. Also has a great soundtrack.

Recommend it for all valve fans alike.

There're also 2 other expansions that Gearbox software made called Opposing Force and Blue Shift if you want to check those out.
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35 of 43 people (81%) found this review helpful
11.4 hrs on record
Posted: October 4
Best game ever made. Period.
Was this review helpful? Yes No
27 of 30 people (90%) found this review helpful
188.5 hrs on record
Posted: October 25
I love half life
i have completed it 12 times
i have 188 hrs play time
It is single player
i have no life
i sold my house to fund my addiction
i am writing this review in a library
10/10
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44 of 63 people (70%) found this review helpful
1.2 hrs on record
Posted: October 30
half life in one word 'crowbar'
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24 of 29 people (83%) found this review helpful
3.0 hrs on record
Posted: October 2
dont call yourself a pc gamer if you never play this
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26 of 34 people (76%) found this review helpful
1.6 hrs on record
Posted: November 15
This game is an ULTIMATE CLASSIC.
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18 of 20 people (90%) found this review helpful
15.8 hrs on record
Posted: October 25
While I think some of its sequel content rides the wave of their brand to be seen better than it actually is, the original Half-Life is a classic for a reason.

While a tad lengthy and occasionally crippled by strained resources pitted against enemies that absolutely won't pull punches, what's undeniable is that Half-Life is NEVER boring. It's excellently paced and extremely varied, full to the brim of memorable and only occasionally frustrating encounters (looking at you, machine gun bunkers). While some of the weapons get a bit gimmicky, especially towards the end, unlike Opposing Force or HL2 they're never shoved in your face as the hot new thing, just dropped in your path to play with if you like.

The final trip to Xen at the end of the game apparently has a reputation of being disappointing, but personally I didn't mind it at all, and the healing chambers were a welcome relief from limited resources pitted against two different armies. My main issue with Xen is at that point the game had been going on for about 12 hours and I just wanted it to end already.

Other than length, the biggest weakness of Half-Life is probably its plot, in that for most of the middle section there isn't one. The game starts off with a nice slow boil, giving you a brief tour of Black Mesa before everything promptly goes to hell, building up from a survival horror feel against incoming aliens before gradually ramping up into an action game as the HECU marines go from merely killing everything and everyone in sight to targetting you specifically due to your stubborn refusal to die. By that point what little the plot has to say patters out until the third act, and all you're left with is an endless series of action and platforming sequences with no context besides "this is the way forward." They're not BORING, I must emphasize. It's just that they keep coming as Gordon Freeman consistantly fails to find the exit.

If this seems like a mostly negative review, I'm rather critical by nature and it mostly stems from my feelings after finishing the game. As I said, its two chief issues are exhausting length and lacking motivation besides "move forward and don't die." From a purely gameplay standpoint the game is brilliant, full of sprawling setpieces which are linear enough to avoid getting lost but nonlinear enough to give you plenty of corners to explore for loot, and for as long as it is, it's a miracle it never felt repetitive.

While I think Blue Shift is an all-around tighter package, Half-Life has absolutely earned its place as a cornerstone of gaming history.
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15 of 18 people (83%) found this review helpful
11.4 hrs on record
Posted: July 31
do you even need a reason to play this
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15 of 19 people (79%) found this review helpful
38.4 hrs on record
Posted: November 9
Half Life - 8.5/10

If you like shooters and not really fussed about amazing graphics, you have got to play this classic game.

The story is very good and interesting, the story starts picking up about a quarter the way through, as some things you may be wondering about but will eventually unfold as you progress through the game. The story finishes with a good ending which makes you want more, and also with a decent end boss battle. Lots of twists and turns in the story make you want to play more.

The combat is very solid and fun, with lots of various gun types and special equipment. It is also challenging at nearly all times, which is what is really good about the game, It keeps showing you new things and problems that you will have to overcome on your own. The enemies come in different shapes and sizes all unique and creative. The challenge I would say is one of the games greatest aspects as you fight for your own survival and to accomplish your goals.

Although the graphics are 16 years old it still is an amazing game, it did not bother me at all. As for it being about a 16ish year old game it is still a great shooter. The levels are interesting from closed in sections, too areas with lots of room. The game makes good use of balencing them out. There are many hidden areas which spice up the game, and little extras as you continue to play. You will face some interesting and original puzzles in the game which are really enjoyable and make you think.

In conclusion, Have a try of this game if you are into shooters or even just want to try something new. You will be most likely dying quite often, if it is hostile combatents or even hazards that pit the levels. One very slight thing however is that at sometimes things were not as clear, making me think alot and backtrack a bit. This is very minor however which I just forgot about. I enjoyed finishing this game, I just cant wait to continue it in Half Life 2 :D
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15 of 20 people (75%) found this review helpful
6.8 hrs on record
Posted: November 6
Rating: 8/10
Overview First Person Shooter


The Good:

+ 80% of the game has some fantastic level design, in fact it has some of the best level design in any FPS
game, everything just feels right.

+ The pacing in the game is near flawless, the game never relies on the same gimmick twice, and every chapter is designed around a certain concept to keep things interesting. The game offers a great mix of puzzle solving and action.

+ The game has a variety of different weapons to fit the situation at hand as well as your playstyle

+ For an old game the AI is surprisingly pretty good, granted it does get stupid sometimes but that is forgivable

+ I love the sound effects in the game. To me the music and sound effects are a big part of the Half Life experience.

The Bad:

-20% of the level design is bad, sometimes its hard to figure out where to go and some of it just doesn't make a whole lot
of sense.

-the last few chapters of the game are awful.

- I experienced numerous glitches in the game

Conclusions

Half LIfe is the father of modern FPS. Back when it was released I would have given it a 9/10 but the game for all its
strengths is starting to show its age. However given its age it still holds up better than most games and being a FPS that
means something. This game really should be experienced by everyone to see how modern FPS games came to be.
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