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:
Recent:
Overwhelmingly Positive (246 reviews) - 95% of the 246 user reviews in the last 30 days are positive.
Overall:
Overwhelmingly Positive (12,416 reviews) - 96% of the 12,416 user reviews for this game are positive.
Release Date: Nov 8, 1998

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Recommended By Curators

"Experience the game that started it all. Become Gordon Freeman as he tries to escape the aftermath of an experiment gone horribly wrong."

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
Customer reviews
Customer Review system updated Sept. 2016! Learn more
Recent:
Overwhelmingly Positive (246 reviews)
Overall:
Overwhelmingly Positive (12,416 reviews)
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7,600 reviews match the filters above ( Overwhelmingly Positive)
Most Helpful Reviews  In the past 30 days
67 of 76 people (88%) found this review helpful
66 people found this review funny
Recommended
1.1 hrs on record
Posted: September 2
man goes to work, dooms all of humanity
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
26 of 29 people (90%) found this review helpful
6 people found this review funny
Recommended
2.6 hrs on record
Posted: September 3
Basically, it's the best game made, before the best game made, was made.
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
17 of 22 people (77%) found this review helpful
13 people found this review funny
Recommended
15.7 hrs on record
Posted: September 10
Still waiting for Half-Life 3
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
13 of 15 people (87%) found this review helpful
18 people found this review funny
Recommended
1.4 hrs on record
Posted: September 4
The single player is superb, the multiplayer is more dead than Harambe. 9/10
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11 of 14 people (79%) found this review helpful
3 people found this review funny
Recommended
2.6 hrs on record
Posted: September 10
Just the best game ever(sry TF2, HL was that great even before you)
Was this review helpful? Yes No Funny
5 of 6 people (83%) found this review helpful
Recommended
3.5 hrs on record
Posted: September 17
I've been playing the game for an hour now, and I would like to give a short review.


I have to say, Half-Life is one of the best games out there in my opinion. Sure, it has crappy graphics, but that was highly expected arrount 1998, and heck, it is one of the best games out there, and the user reviews are overwhelmingly possitive!

So in conclusion, in my opinion, Half-Life is one of the best games out there, and it has been since 1998.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
Recommended
0.2 hrs on record
Posted: September 17
This is the first game i have ever played, i feel like my life is in just one game, Half Life.
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
Recommended
16.0 hrs on record
Posted: September 15
The ORIGINAL MASTERPEICE! Absolutely historical legacy of epic proportions makes this a beautiful trip to the past. It has aged well, with its fantastic story, and immersive level designs.

When I was young, I remember being BLOWN AWAY playing this for the first time with my brother. I can remember all those wow moments. It really ticked all the right boxes!

My brother would search every nook and cranny, and I'd be eagar to move on and see what's round the corner! We both wanted to find everything about the story we possibly could!

Those were the days.... *sigh*
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4 of 5 people (80%) found this review helpful
1 person found this review funny
Recommended
4.4 hrs on record
Posted: September 20
wheres the steam achievements for half life, gabe?
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2 of 2 people (100%) found this review helpful
Recommended
31.6 hrs on record
Posted: September 22
One of the best games the FPS genre has to offer. A must play for any PC gamer.
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Recently Posted
lncredibles
0.1 hrs
Posted: September 28
The good old days...
Helpful? Yes No Funny
GavinTheAmazing
34.6 hrs
Posted: September 28
Very good storyline!

10/10
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Migueleby
23.2 hrs
Posted: September 28
How can I write a bad review on Half-Life?

Just please, don't make chapters like "On a rail", that's just painful.

10/10
Helpful? Yes No Funny
mccfull1
119.0 hrs
Posted: September 27
I love this game to its core. Half-Life is one of my favourite games of all time. It's an excellent fps that does a fantastic job taking the player into it's world with a great selection of weapons, monsters and an overall outstanding atmosphere. It has aged quite ungracefully interms of graphics as the game was released way back in 1998 but the ai, music, atmosphere and gameplay still hold up very well. If you want to experience a fun, scary and action packed fps play this game! If I had any problems with it (not even things I find to be too much of a problem as I am a fanboy of this game) it would be that it may not always be clear to new players what exactly they should be doing in the story or overall goal. Alot of the more in depth stuff you will only find by searching up wikis about the story. It doesn't bother me but I can imagine it being confusing to newer players. It's told in a much more subtle fashion than some players might expect.

This game also has a huge libary of mods and addons. Games like conterstrike, day of defeat, team fortress and others wouldn't exist today if it wasn't for this game. Developers are still creating mods for this 18 year old game which I find amazing.

BTW if you're gonna play this game, play it in the dark alone. Half-Life is more of an experience than a game you play with your friends although it does have multiplayer in the form of deathmatch (and other mods such as sven coop) I find the best way of playing it and enjoying it a first time is to play alone.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
Name_Of_Nameness
1.0 hrs
Posted: September 27
A great game, a clasic, and a game well worth buying.
Graphics: For the 90's 9/10
Story: 8/10
Gameplay:10/10
Helpful? Yes No Funny
No Retribution
15.9 hrs
Posted: September 27
This is the exception to my run of bad luck with other valve titles. This runs like butter as you would expect, absolutley no issues from start to finish. Maybe because its single play I dont know. I dont believe you should have to struggle with a game you have paid for to make it work it should just work but anyway.

It was a great little nostalgia trip admittedly with a bit of frustration here and there as I forgot just how much more challenging it was to play an fps game with a health bar. That plus jumping right back in on hard mode becuase I thought it would be a cake walk. Oh well perserverance and all that.

Well worth the purchase.
Helpful? Yes No Funny
WalterREBoRN
57.8 hrs
Posted: September 27
It's really hard to say something about Half-Life that hasn't already been said before. The game has been showered with such praise and acclaim since it's inception, even in the modern day. While many people would be ready to just write it off as people looking at it through 'nostalgia goggles', it's really important to go back and look at what makes it such a masterpiece.

Half-Life begins in a way that no other shooter at the time had done. Instead of leading off with a mission briefing before throwing you into a room full of demons, or showing you a cutscene to serve as exposition, the game immediately puts you in the shoes of Dr. Gordon Freeman on his fated tram ride as he is late to work. Your control of Freeman is, well, free, and you're free to move about the tram and examine the surroundings of your tram. You, the player, help Freeman get into his HEV Suit, greet his colleagues, and push a specimen of crystal into a large machine which promptly wrecks the facility of Black Mesa. Gordon, with your aid, sets out on an epic quest to escape his workplace, fighting off freakish aliens and later on soldiers who are sent in to perform a cover-up operation. Only in one instance is direct control ever taken away from you and even then you see the event unfold through Freeman's eyes. Story isn't told to you via exposition, but rather by carefully placed scripted events and NPC's you can encounter who inform you of where to go next.

Half-Life's story, or rather the way it tells it's story still manages to be as immersive as it was when I first played it, way back in 2009. Gordon isn't some lunkheaded badass space marine who rips and tears the guts of his enemies but rather a normal person who just happens to be donning a powerful suit of experimental armor that prevents him from the same type of swift deaths that his co-workers are so subjected to. Black Mesa isn't a laid out level filled with awkward enemy traps that forces you to run around looking for arbitrary keycards to progress but rather a research facility that feels real and legitimate to go through, and it's still one of the most believable enviroments in a shooter today. The way the enemies interact with their environment makes them feel like actual living beings.

Of course, all of this wouldn't be anywhere near as good if the gameplay wasn't there as well. Thankfully, the combat in Half-Life is as visceral as other FPS games of it's time, featuring a wide array of weapons with meaty sound effects. Gordon's first weapon is his Iconic crowbar, which you wont be using so much as a weapon later on and more of as a 'hand' so to speak, it'll be the weapon you use to smash apart the environment to see what is and what isn't breakable, or to smash open a crate to gain supplies. Your ranged arsenal is very diverse, featuring basic weapons like a Submachine Gun, a Shotgun, and a Revolver to the Tau cannon, something akin to a wind up rail gun from quake, to a tranqulizer dart crossbow that you'll primarily be using to fight off underwater and aerial threats.

The weapons themselves are great but what makes them so fun to use is the fact that the enemies are just as diverse and require different strategies to take down. Something like a headcrab should be killed with the crowbar or the glock so as to not waste ammo, but faster, stronger moving targets like the HECU marines will be more easily dispatched with weapons like the MP5 or the Spas-12. You'll even come accross a giant hulking alien which is imperveous to all types of damage except for explosions. The sound designs on all the enemies is spot on, with the HECU sounding suitably intimidating over the radio comms, or the eerie roars of the Gargantua.

This already solid gameplay is also helped by various other factors, like level design. I already mentioned that Black Mesa feels like a real place, and so the Level Design is often in close quarters, with enemies often hiding around corners and enemies like the HECU marines will take advantage of the various routes they can take to flank you, just as you are able to do the same. The game also features in my opinion one of the best VGM soundtracks out there, with songs like "Diabolical Adrenaline Guitar", "Nuclear Mission Jam", and the Credits theme standing out as some of my favorites in particular. When the soundtrack wants you to feel like a badass, it will, and when it wants to be atmospheric, it will. Valve's sound team was absolutely on point here, as the game and it's various sound effects, quotes and music all feel spot on.

Half-Life isn't without a few flaws here and there though. The game slows down towards the middle, with two chapters On a Rail and Residue Processing feeling a little tedious to play through, and with the final levels of Xen outside of the final boss being incredibly annoying and un-fun to play through. It seems like there was some pact between FPS devs of the time to make the final levels of their games to be as stupid as possible, but even then I really don't think these are enough to truly hurt the game. Half-Life is remembered so fondly not just because of itself as a game, but also the way it revolutionized the Genre. So many other FPS games tried to follow in it's wake, and it still remains one of the most influential FPS games of all time.

Half-Life is without a doubt one of my personal favorite games of all time, as well in my opinion being worthy of being called one of the best games of all time. Half-Life is a game that combines an unbroken narrative with kick-♥♥♥ gameplay, strong and realistic level design with a rockin' soundtrack to create one of the most celebrated games ever created. I didn't even touch upon the huge collection of high-quality free mods available for the game, but they absolutely exist. They Hunger, Afraid of Monsters and Poke646 stand out as some of my favorite mods for any game. Half-Life is absolutely worth your time and money, and you owe it to yourself to play it if you consider yourself a video game enthusiast.
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Chao's Playmate
10.3 hrs
Posted: September 27
I wanted to like this game, I really did. I heard it was a classic. However, I feel like the main problem with the game is that it pulls a lot of cheap deaths on you.

Have you ever played I Wanna Be The Guy? You know, that game that likes to randomly kill you before you have time to react? That's how Half-Life feels. Explosions come out of nowhere and blow you up constantly, sometimes you have to just book it through tons of enemies, and sometimes the map layout was so twisty and confusing I had no idea where to go.

Not to mention you can play the whole game for free through Sven Co-op so...
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badolescent
20.5 hrs
Posted: September 26
While playing this, I couldn't help but to make constant comparisons to original Doom. Whereas Doom is no doubt the classic staple of the First-Person Shooter genre (see my in-depth review), this is in may ways a vastly superior experience in terms of rich, engaging, and seemless storytelling. Both games follow a similar plot: Our protagonist is an agent of a Goverment-funded research facility doing things they should not be doing; something goes awry; all Hell breaks loose; fighting to survive we get transported to a different dimension; beat the big baddie; and save the universe.. for now...

However, Doom is a collection of loosely interrelated levels ultimately culminating in a story arc showcasing our doomed (haha, get it?!) space marine's descent into the bowels of Hell, highlighted by expository text at the end of each episode, Half-Life is a fluid and constant narrative one experiences through the eyes of the protagonist - generally free of immersion-breaking cut scenes - no #@%&ing QTE's here! - sequences requiring the player to react play out in real time. There's no level-end screens, but rather chapter titles appearing on screen as you progress through the different areas, letting the player know they are on the right track. All part of the cohesive storytelling that keeps the player engaged right to the end.

The gameplay can be challenging, and at times, unforgiving. The difficulty curve ramps up nicely as the player aqcuire better weapons, but ammunition can be sarce at times, which adds a good balance to the game. The visuals and voice acting are decent given the times, but the script is solid.

All in all: Great game. 2/3 ;)
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Lopper 🐮🔪
13.8 hrs
Posted: September 26
Greatest videogame ever made, don't question me just buy it, or better yet buy the Valve Complete Pack because that is absolutely worth the money.
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