User Score
9.1

Universal acclaim- based on 2492 Ratings

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  1. Sep 20, 2014
    8
    A true gaming classic that should be played by everyone. The story (like half life 2's) is great, the gameplay is always exciting and fun. This is a must own.
  2. Sep 11, 2014
    10
    This game is a masterpiece that can be considered the best of all time. Nothing can even come close to the impact that this game made for the entire world. This single handily created the modern FPS genre. Sure Doom and Duke Nukem 3D were good, but Half Life made it a story, not a mindless shooting frenzy. If you are looking for that, then this game will be semi unpleasing for you. If you are looking for a great game with a great story line and combat, then this game will satisfy your needs easily. Expand
  3. Aug 11, 2014
    10
    I feel really proud for playing this masterpiece when it first came out. I still remember I had a debate with a friend of mine and PS1 owner back at the day. He was claiming that PC graphics cant surpass console graphics. So, I invited him to my home and showed him HL1. He was freaking shocked and speechless and at first thought that the intro with the train was a FMV, until I moved the mouse... One year later he bought a PC Expand
  4. Aug 5, 2014
    7
    After 16 years, until this day, I still don't remember what was all that hype about and the funny thing is that the same hype train continued with Half-Life 2. Don't get me wrong, both games are a good solid FPS games, I liked them and enjoyed both, but they never took my breath away, they just never got me or gave me something to value them so highly, I never understood their massive appeal and I feel there are much much better titles in this category out there. Maybe I'm just immune to that supposed positive Valve vibe everyone else seems to get, I never even liked Steam, so it's pretty possible. 7/10 Expand
  5. Jun 22, 2014
    10
    Half-Life 1 is still what we thought it was: the best game of the century. Nothing may surpass the ingenuity, the genius of VALVe while making that game. The gameplay is revolutionary, the map design is wonderful, the split between puzzle and fight is excellent to ensure a comfortable playthrough.
    There is no way you may think this is a FPS; this is the ancestor of modern ones. Doom
    unraveled a new genre, Half-Life perfected it.
    It made it.

    This is art, in all of its forms. I can't simply say else.
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  6. Jun 10, 2014
    9
    Fue uno de los primeros videojuegos que en vez de bloquear las escenas para situar la historias las hacía parte del juego, además generó un standart dentro de los FPS que ha continuado hasta la fecha. No ha envejecido muy bien pero con Black Mesa ha mejorado.
  7. Jun 5, 2014
    10
    Remember back when FPS games were like this? No iron-sights. No objective markers. No endless streams of "terrorists" running at you with their non existent AI? They were good times.

    Half-Life was the most impressive game of it's time and really dropped you into the thick of it. Starting with the moment you step on the tram to head to your lab, to the cataclysmic events that unfold not
    30 minutes later, you're there. It's not narrated to you or written on loading screens. Along the way, your colleagues guide you and keep you up to date with the current events. Black Mesa had a real sense of place that you could really sink your teeth into. To top it all off, it fully open source with the tools immediately available for you to get into the thick of it and make your own story?

    People still develop mods for this game today, 15 years later, meaning that the play time is practically limitless.

    Half-Life was and is to this day a groundbreaking game and its greatness is challenged only by it's sequel.
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  8. Apr 26, 2014
    10
    this game revolutionized and shaped so much of modern gaming its hard to fathom it. it deserves nothing lower than a perfect score. its dated and a bit derpy now, of course (it came out in 98!) so if youre playing it for the first time now, take it in context of when it was released.
  9. Apr 22, 2014
    10
    What Half-Life does well is tell a story through action HL has no cutscenes because cutscenes are the opposite of action, they are inaction because it takes control away from the player. One of the key features of a "Rail Shooter", go from point a to point b with few diversions & no backtracking. Rail Shooter as in like a train, you always keep moving. Valve knows that backtracking gets frustrating faster than anything else, and is the most artificial way to enhance difficulty (hell increasing the damage the player takes is a better way if only marginally).
    Valve is also fond of vent crawling and puzzles which I've never seen much appeal in apart from the initial novelty of vent crawling.

    Apart from being very moddable and userfriendly,
    Half-Life also does something incredibly well that has helped modders improve their own skills, and thats level design. Each place in the game looks hand crafted. No copy and pasting of sections or randomization here! It also knows how to be challenging without throwing tons of enemies at you, and thats with good enemy placement as well as knowing when to give the player rewards (weapon/ammo/health placement).

    Its a game designer's poster child, thats what it is.
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  10. Apr 16, 2014
    10
    Half Life is one of the best FPS in all of history. Half-Life made in 1999 BEATS some games made in 2013 (COD) there is actually an interesting story line. Gordon Freeman a theoretical physicist that knows how to shoot zombies with a shotgun take that rednecks your not the only one. The map design, level design, and weapon design is OUTSTANDING. (Love the spaz-12) this the first and maybe the best game valve has made. Yes graphics are outdated and yes AI are a bit clumsy and walk in linear ways at times but you can look over that and still IT WAS MADE IN 1999 and if you want an updated version get black mesa source - that's for the pusses who care so much about graphics. Overall this is a GREAT fps and I would play this game before you die great job valve I give this a 97/100 Expand
  11. Apr 16, 2014
    10
    The people that made this must have genius level IQs. Absolutely mind blowing. Whenever I go back to it, I realize how much every other FPS before and after sucks in comparison (yes, even the original "Deus Ex" and "Human Revolution" missed notes that this game constantly nails on the head).

    Not only is it an amazing single-player title, we got some game-changing multiplayer mods out of
    it as well (Counter-Strike, TFC [which was a *much* improved version of the Quake TF], Natural Selection, Science & Industry) that were absolutely *free*. Guys setting up servers in their basement and players getting pings better than you can get in CoD or any other console multiplayer title. Those were the days. People who got into gaming after all this have no idea what they missed. Kind of like getting into "The Beatles" *after* the hippie movement. Still a great band, but the music doesn't have anywhere *near* the same impact it would've if you were there when it was happening. Expand
  12. Apr 16, 2014
    10
    One of the few gme sthat have set a standard for future games is the best FPS ever no doubt better than most games 2k14 too. Balanced weapons, even better than the other Half-Life games.....
  13. Mar 26, 2014
    10
    Up to this day, there hasn't been a game that would drop my jaw lower. Every single part about this game was and is enjoyable, from the great gameplay all the way to the story or the music, which beautifully enhances the atmosphere of all the locations you have a chance to visit. A 10/10 must, one of the best gaming experience you can find even today.
  14. Mar 16, 2014
    10
    Perfeito, nada a declarar.
    Toda a imersão, a historia que é contada de uma forma magnifica, você se sente na pele de gordon, ate porque ele não fala, isso ajuda, partes tensas, terror, ação, coisas loucas, magnifico ate o final.
  15. Mar 7, 2014
    10
    ple who play this game will last a life time in there hearts because this game still ROCKs all others ever made for the PC Valve i love your Work! please keep kickin ass on the best game series you have made in the Year
  16. Mar 2, 2014
    10
    Okay, so it's 1998. A new game is on the shelves under the name of Half Life, from a new Valve company. You pick it up, buy it, then load it up. You find yourself at a computer playing a game where you are on a train going through a facility. Then just as you start a test.... BAM. Everything goes wrong. Now you are Gordon Freeman, a theoretical scientist escaping the ruins of Black Mesa.

    Would like to note that the game is a little glitchy, but remember it's 1998 ;)
    Great game. WPOAOAOASOSOSF.

    (Would Play Over And Over And Over And So On So Forth)
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  17. Mar 1, 2014
    10
    One day I was bored and thought I should play this game. It was so phenomenal I'm a fan now!
    I think the best thing about it is the storytelling: You can experience the world of half-life without a cut scene and your character doesn't speak which means you can make your own thoughts. The atmosphere is also very well done and the multiplayer mode has a lot to offer.
    This game was also
    revolutionary for the FPS! Expand
  18. Feb 22, 2014
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. The game that started the beautiful series of Half-Life. This game is a true treasure of it's period. For a game released in 1998, it was almost Next Generation. If you every say this game was bad, you obviously don't have a good taste for games. I suggest you buy the the Half-Life complete pack and play the entire series.
    IN A NUTSHELL: Follow the adventures of Gordon Freeman as he escapes the Black Mesa Research Facility in New Mexico. During the path you will encounter 3 armed aliens, acid spitting bulls, barnacles, and heavily armed soldiers.
    Expand
  19. Feb 16, 2014
    10
    This is classic I love it, I played it for 18 hours for my first play through and now I'm on my second and I am now 3 more hours in. It is still amazing, it has definitely stood the test of time.
  20. Jan 31, 2014
    10
    This game is what set it all in motion for me, it changed how gaming in the FPS world is done today. I have yet to find a game that even comes close to how much fun I had with Half Life. Not only was the story line engaging and the graphics (for the time) awesome, but it opened up a whole new style of gaming with it's ability to make mods such as TFC. TFC is a completely different experience by its own merit, but none of what we have today would be possible without the utter glory that is Half Life. This is a classic and a legend! Expand
  21. Jan 29, 2014
    10
    I started playing HL in deathmatches with friends when it first came out. Then my system at the time could barely handle it. Now, some 10 year later and a new laptop that is 16 times more powerful than my previous system. I have found it a new and love it.
  22. Jan 24, 2014
    10
    This game is a work of art. Playing through the amazing story of the Black Mesa breakdown and surviving the horrors within is amazing. For 1998, the gameplay mechanics and over all game was and still is revolutionary. As far as being and FPS, this game is not your typical "Hide, Shoot, Run", it requires thinking and patients, which is rare for an FPS, and still brings action. One of the greatest games in history. I recommend for anyone who loves video games. Expand
  23. Jan 21, 2014
    10
    This stands as one of my favorite games of all time. It is enthralling as well as challenging. There were a few parts that were really difficult to figure out the puzzle, but once you got it you felt instant gratification. It has a very unique way of telling a story, and if you're not careful you could miss it. Overall I will remember this game with a lot of fond memories.
  24. Jan 10, 2014
    10
    I think this game is a best game ever because has a beautiful story enjoyable gameplay and epic graphics
    this great game is VALVe's debut game and like all VALVe games it's epic
  25. Jan 1, 2014
    8
    An old classic. A good storyline (but not a patch on its even better sequel) but it's a classic "for its time". Best game of 1998, sure. But unlike some games it's not survived the test of time as well.
  26. Dec 29, 2013
    10
    This game is made out of what all FPS's should be. And it's sequel is even better.
    ...................................................................
  27. Dec 27, 2013
    9
    I never got to play any games from the Half Life series until this past year, then I bought my new gaming laptop and thought, "What better way to start with a game that has been deemed a classic?" and now I see why. Half Life is a game that is over 15 years old and has remarkably held up extremely well since '98. Play any current first person shooter and then play Half Life and you'll appreciate how innovative Half Life was for its time. Expand
  28. Dec 25, 2013
    9
    I highly recommend this game. It was simply a phenomenal gaming experience. Vault created one heck of a story line as well as killer pulse pounding scenes throughout. The only flaw the ridiculously slow grenade throws.
  29. Dec 25, 2013
    9
    It isn't everyday that you come across a game that totally revolutionizes an entire fps genre, but Half-Life has done just that. Immersive and engaging entertainment experience.
  30. Dec 13, 2013
    6
    I'm unimpressed and underwhelmed by the Campaign, but the multiplayer is fantastic. I would recommend this just for the multiplayer mode. Yeah, it's nothing special, but it's a very good multiplayer game.
  31. Dec 7, 2013
    9
    This game is so awsome and it's so original!! Don't be annoyed by the graphics,you can install a mod or download a HD pack for better weapons quality and characters(like I did). The only sad thing about this game is that is a Linear game but I don't think it would look very nice with some sandbox options. First of all,you may think through the game that is boring and you should stop playing but when I finished the game and realized that I was only a scientist at the beggining of the game and later on I realized it was just awsome!!! I would give it a 9/10! Expand
  32. Dec 4, 2013
    10
    A great game! Great story line, great characters, what more could you want?! The graphics are bad but remember this game is over a decade old so don't let the graphics fool you. I didn't want to try it out that much because of the graphics but when I did I was hooked.
  33. Nov 27, 2013
    10
    I played this game nearly 15 years after it was released, and compared to today's games, it is truly a great game. Its graphics are still good, even with todays standards, and it keeps you immersed into a sci-fi world where story doesn't have to be thrown in your face for you to keep up with events. Half-Life proves that time does not decide how good a game is, but how the game withstands that time, seeing as it is a quality game even today and probably will be one of my top favourite games of all time. Expand
  34. Nov 24, 2013
    8
    One of the games people grew up on in the late 1990s. Gordon Freeman is a memorable character however time has not done him well as he had no voice acting associated with him so all that remains is a blocky character render and a few paintings. Today it appears Valve are busy enough with Steam to give Half-Life series serious focus. HL1 was a stepping stone in storytelling first person shooters and varied environment interactivity (eg. physics puzzles). Expand
  35. Nov 23, 2013
    9
    This game is near perfect, it has changed the fps genre forever, with no doubt. The Black Mesa facility is truly a maze, and the xen levels...MY GOD THE XEN levels were amazing. This is a near perfect game!
  36. Nov 19, 2013
    9
    Half Life's claustrophobic nature and engaging story proves that first-person shooters can be something more than shooting endless range of enemies. Not only that, but the gameplay also revolutionizes gaming mechanics. Exploring various locations for supplies and platforming through sections is needful to go through various levels, making the experience more interesting. And, as you except, shooting's remarkably fun. But, what aspect this game revolutionized the most, is successfully telling a story without scripted scenes. Half Life is a mark of brilliance. (Final Score: 9.64) Expand
  37. Nov 11, 2013
    9
    This game is a personal favourite of mine, so I'll do my best to keep it as unbiased as possible. This game is probably one of the best first person shooters ever made. The story is interesting, the gameplay is fantastic, and while the graphics aren't top notch by today's standards, it has that nostalgic charm that keeps it from being hard to look at. The fast paced, old school FPS action in this game is fantastic and fun, and should certainly keep fans of old school FPS games interested, along with a pretty interesting story, though it's certainly not as good as its sequel. The cons of this game include relatively boring enemies at many points, sometimes the levels feel quite drawn out, and the movement can feel somewhat iffy on newer machines (at least as far as I can tell). Overall, this game is definitely worth a playthrough in the very least if you're a fan of other Valve titles or old school shooters. Expand
  38. Nov 6, 2013
    10
    Not only one of the greatest shooters of all time one of the greatest games, period. Revolutionized a genre previously known for pure run n' gun and 'shooting gallery' style game play with its storytelling, puzzles, and AI. Spawned countless successful mods(e.g. Counter-Strike) and influenced other games for years after its release.
  39. Nov 5, 2013
    10
    horrible game, the graphix are bad, you cant aim down sights, its plagued with bugs (i fell out of the train in the beginning by jumping), no perks, no playable servers or cool maps, cant play with an xbox360 controller (cause fps console gaming is superior for obvious reasons), i couldnt paint a rainbow or d**k on my gun
  40. Nov 5, 2013
    10
    This game revolutionized what a single player fps could be. It's packed from start to finish with some of the most enjoyable gameplay in the genre. A true masterpiece in the art.
  41. Nov 2, 2013
    5
    I have never understood why people love this game so much. I've played all the "Half-Life" games currently out and all of them were mediocre to me. The story was fairly uninteresting to me and I just couldn't get into it. Anyway, the graphics (for its time) were good, the mechanics were good, and the story was... meh.
  42. Oct 18, 2013
    8
    A masterpiece and in my opinion better than HL2. It has more weapons, enemies, challenges, difficulty and all in all fun. Gordon Freeman feels more 3-D rather than an empty shell even though he's still silent, characters to hate and love, enemies to destroy and it ranges from aliens to zombies to soldiers. Really, its enjoyable for everyone. The storyline is simple, and based in a lab rather than in a city like HL2. It also gives some backstory on HL2 in the ending. Weapons are wide-ranged and for the 90's the graphics are top notch. Go play it, you might not LOVE it but you'll still enjoy. Expand
  43. Sep 26, 2013
    9
    While the sequel to this game takes all of the plaudits for being one of the best games ever made, but for me Half Life is so much better. As someone who has recently beat the game you would think that the dated graphics would be an issue, but the answer is no.

    If I'm honest however, I must admit that the story is fairly mediocre at best, and also you will find slightly repetitive
    'room to room, wave after wave' situations throughout the game. But the fact is, the sheer genius and quality of Half Life dwarfs those issues. What is also a testament to the game is that I am simply not used to/experienced with classic/old games so the fact I can appreciate the game is surprising for me.

    Of all the games I have played, Half Life has by far the best level design. You will experience that there isn't just one way of getting through a section of the game. Throughout the 15 hour campaign, I honestly felt none of the levels were repetitive which is something that should be praised as it was the first ever game made by Valve.

    The enemies are varied and challenging, in fact, its one of the most difficult games I have ever played. I often watched walkthroughs to help me progess. Nevertheless, the enemies are outstanding, level design is incredible and the length of the game is very satisfying. I've also played Half Life 2 and for me, this game is a lot better.

    9/10 Brilliant
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  44. Sep 16, 2013
    10
    Gaming perfection, resulting in the quality of gaming we know today. Map design was genius for the time, when most games lacked puzzle elements, weapon design and a.i. was also top notch. Everything from the safe feeling the start had until the ending on xen was a joy ride with constant new equipment and weapons.
  45. Sep 4, 2013
    10
    This is among the best games ever made the story is excellent so is the gameplay, level design everything is perfect except for a few things the dated graphics but back in 1998 is was amazing and the platforming is sometimes really fiddly and it is actually challenging even on Normal difficulty and for less experienced or casual players Easy presents a challenge (i think) but its never unfair it has some interesting setting and that feel of shooting in Half Life and then there is the multiplayer while this isn't the strong point of the game it's decent and paved the way for Counter-Strike and then theres the mods Counter Strike, Team Fortress started out as a Quake mod though), Day of Defeat and is better than Ocarina of Time Expand
  46. Aug 31, 2013
    6
    I kind of like it but after a while of game play it starts to get very repetitive. Doing the same thing a lot killing an alien, solve a puzzle, kill an alien, solve a puzzle. The graphics are good on some things but not others. I would give it a 3 but it was made in 1998 which is mind boggling. Best game of the millennium (1000 years). Thanks for reading!
  47. Aug 31, 2013
    8
    Wonderful game, lots of mods, at a low price?! The answer, YES! This game delivers on a massive scale, having lots of awards and praise for it being the first game Valve ever released! Pros: -Very influential and unique story and concepts -Extremely moddable, great mods out there -Obscure and cool weapons, such as the Egon and the Tau Cannon. -Still being supported in the modding community.
    -The graphics are a little dated, but still hold up today.
    -10+ hours of gameplay (unlike some games today)
    -Good sound design for the technology back then.
    -Very affordable, ONLY $10 in the US!

    Cons:
    -It gets a little repetitive towards the end.
    -It does not hold up well today, since it is so influential.
    -The boss is a bit too long and tedious.
    -Loading screens everywhere, but this is not such a big problem, since with computers
    now can breeze through the loading process
    -Some of the puzzles are easy to figure out and are not challenging.
    -The voice acting is nothing special.

    Those are all the pros and cons that I can list off of the top of my head. I am sure there are more things to list, but overall, this game is great! Buy it! It is very cheap!
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  48. Aug 9, 2013
    9
    It's got a great storyline, however there are some puzzles and long parts which are a bit boring or very hard. The game was ahead of it's time (and still was by 2002). Multiplayer isn't too exciting, with only Deathmatch and Team Deathmatch. Must play, on Steam it is only 10 euros, which it still definitely is worth.
  49. Aug 7, 2013
    10
    Had incredible fun when I finally got to place this game. First I played the PS2 version but this is FAR better. Intense story line, great controls and bosses that don't die from simply shooting them. This is a FPS where you use your brain.
  50. Aug 5, 2013
    10
    The metascore on this game, should be 100. This game was named game of the year by over 50 publications! I just beat it today. (8/5/13) Best. Game. EVER
  51. Jul 24, 2013
    10
    I first bought this game because I heard so many good things about it that I HAD to see it for myself. The first thing that hit me (playing it in 2013) was the graphics (produced 1998). I laughed a bit at the graphics at the beginning, but I don't think I thought about them again after the 10 minute mark. At all. I became so immersed in the story that I didn't have any spare thoughts to give. I launched it expecting to play an hour, but was surprised when 3 o'clock rolled around and I hadn't eaten anything! The very next day, I started it up telling myself I wouldn't let that happen again. The story kept my full attention and I had to be called for dinner. At that moment I realized, after making me do nothing but game on that one game all day, two days in a row(which I try never to let happen), that Half Life was exactly what everyone told me it would be. After thinking about it for a bit, I have decided that it is one of the best single-player games I have ever played, if not for but everything other than the graphics (which doesn't even matter, after one stops obsessing over them and remember exactly when it was made).

    One thing that I was really impressed about was the variety of weapons one found. For me, in different situations I liked to whip out Weapon X to confront Guy A and then switch to Weapon Y to finish off Alien B, or altogether stay back and pick them off with Weapon Z. I also impressed with the amount of ammo you get throughout the duration of the game. Half Life seems to give you just enough ammo for Favorite Gun X that you have to pick and choose when you want to use it while still allowing you to use it when you want without fear that you will be left defenseless. I leaves you with exactly enough to get by a point in the game to make you FEEL that you might run out.

    My favorite thing about Half Life is its adrenaline moments. This game keeps you on your feet the entire time. Aliens can teleport in at any time, you walk around a corner and you are assaulted on all sides, an unseen headcrab jumps at your face, something completely unexpected happens. You can never take any little task for granted in this game; if something happens normally a two or three times, its a prime target for some sort of unexpected jump.

    The negative reviews seem to all say the same thing: Bad graphics, how they don't understand the story, and that the character movement is difficult to manage. To enjoy the game, you have to let go of the graphics. Simple as that. If you are one of those guys that won't even touch a game that has bad graphics, you can download Source SDK Base 2007 and the free mod Black Mesa (It is basically the same story, minor changes, newer graphics, but it is not made by Valve nor does it have the end portion of the game). The story is not exactly explained to you like a storyteller is explaining it to you, but instead you have to deduce from what you are asked to do in the game and the results of those actions what exactly is happening. If you did not understand why you did a certain task, I would suggest looking up the chapter you just completed (it says whenever you save on the list of loads which chapter you are on) on the internet. I know I missed at least one thing while playing this game, and it really helps keep the game enjoyable and understandable as you progress. Now, for some reason people are complaining about how hard it is to jump across a pit of *insert miserable object here* or how they can't use ladders, falling to their death in either case. This game does have its very short and subtle moments of parkour, but it is only difficult if you make it difficult. For these moments I can only tell you to jump at the last moment or look around to see if there is another way around/another jumping point. Lastly, the WASD keys are automatically set to a "Run" or "Jog" type of action. To climb down a ladder in real life, you wouldn't RUN down the ladder, would you? There is a "Walk" key--normally bound to SHIFT, where you can approach the ladder as one would in real life; walking carefully and accessing it full on and not an angle.

    After addressing a good 80% of the reviews, lets take a look at the numbers now. As of today, 1826 people thoroughly enjoyed this game. 34 people were pretty OK with this game, but generally had some problems with it. 108 people (80 of which I have addressed) did not like the game at all. That leaves 28 people who just didn't like the game because they were not that into it legitimately (which I can totally accept). 28 out of 1968 people on Metacritic did not like this game for reasons that are unchangeable. If that trend continues for whoever reads this and is wondering if they should get Half Life, you have a 98.577% chance(1940 people who liked the game 1968 total people) of liking this game(rating it 5 or higher) or a 92.785% chance (1826 people 1968 total people) of enjoying this game a lot(rating it a 7 or higher). I'd say those are good odds.
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  52. Jul 17, 2013
    9
    Lets be honest here this game is outdated in many ways (graphics and sound), but the gameplay and storyline still makes Half Life fun almost 15 years after its release. If you enjoyed one of the other Half Life for the magnificent story and the challenges rather than the graphics, then I would highly recommend buying Half-Life.
  53. Jul 9, 2013
    10
    One of the best games ever made. EVEN NOW YEARS AFTER IT IS MADE, PLAY IT nuff said. the only bad thing about the game is the ladder climbing is really obnoxious
  54. Jul 3, 2013
    10
    Half-Life is one of the best games ever made. Immersive and fun. Great story, cool weapons, and good voice acting. An experiment goes wrong causing aliens to wreak havoc on the Black Mesa Facility.
  55. Jul 3, 2013
    10
    This game is truly the pinnacle of its time. It flawlessly integrates story, combat and puzzles. I feel it hasn't aged a bit, and is still a brilliant purchase 15 years later. 10/10 would recommend.
  56. Jul 1, 2013
    8
    I thought Half-Life was a standard 90's shooter...but then I played Alien Vs Predator (Classic 2000) and I saw how HL was so ahead of its time, both in controls and graphics. The game plays very similar to today's first person shooters, the graphics still hold up (in my opinion) and the story is quite nice, even though the storytelling suffers a bit from the lack of cutscenes or other ways of telling the story. You will simply not understand the story if you're not paying attention. Nice soundtrack, nice pacing...Overall, its a great game! 8/10. Expand
  57. Jun 18, 2013
    10
    I'm never sure if the people who give games like this 0's are mentally handicapped or trolling. I hope it's the latter. I played half-life 2 in 2006ish. I was 15 years old. I loved Half-life 2. I'm now 22 and I just decided to buy half-life because idk, for whatever reason I just decided I had never played the first one and it was time. It was released in 1998 and I beat this game in 2 days because it was that good. I couldn't stop playing the campaign. After 15 years of it's release, accounting for generational differences in games, it's a top 5 best game of all time. Expand
  58. Jun 13, 2013
    10
    The best game I've played in my life, I never delve into a character much like Freeman, the story is very good and has something not very common, has no scene that can not interact with someone or something
  59. Jun 7, 2013
    10
    Classic, all I can say is that Valve has brought the world something Magnificent and that sparked off later First Person Shooters such as Halo, Area 51, and even changed how Quake played. Not to mention the numerous mods such as Counter Strike, Team Fortress and Day of Defeat. The graphics were great for it's time, gameplay was fresh and orginial, and to top it all off, it was a game devolpers very first game. Half-Life cannot be missed by an PC Gamer and is still a must own for 2013, Please people, spend your money on the Half-Life series, support the Valve so they can give us other great titles like this. Expand
  60. AWG
    Jun 4, 2013
    9
    Great storyline and awesome gameplay: fifteen years later, Half Life is still the game many "modern" FPSs would like to be. Maybe not the best game ever. but damn it's among the first five for sure.
  61. Jun 3, 2013
    10
    Half-Life is an amazing action game, based around a simple but fun plot. You got aliens, right, but there's a little bit more to it than that. The variety of weapons, enemies, and level design is nothing short of spectacular. There's no chapter that outstays its welcome. It's a really old game now but honestly, the graphics will always be good enough to stand the test of time. You are alone most of the time, and the game can be a little scary at times, I was too scared to play it when I was a kid (lol), but it shouldn't be a concern for any grownup. I will admit the last few chapters don't quite hold up to everything else beforehand, but they're still decent; and the conclusion of the game doesn't disappoint, it's quite mysterious (and a cliffhanger). The game is a 10/10 for people like me, but I don't expect everyone to feel the same way, because there's not much story, it's 99% action. Regardless, it's a must-play. Expand
  62. May 25, 2013
    9
    This game is fun and addictive. It is a Sci-Fi game, which I love, and its by Valve so it can't be bad. The Graphics are good, considering that the game was from 1998. But if you look beyond graphics its a pretty good game. The story is easy to follow. I'm not going to say what it is in case I ruin anything. People talk to you and it feels realistic, the voice acting is also very well done. Weapons vary and are each great. Gameplay is amazing, and will keep you hooked from The Desert to The Moon. Characters, there are not many that have a background but the ones that do each have a different roll. Its an amazing game, and I say buy this game. Expand
  63. sft
    May 22, 2013
    10
    Gordon is definitely not a moron

    The Half-Life games are the thinking-person’s FPSs and the series is this reviewer’s favourite game franchise. The original game does look a bit dated by the standards of 2011 but bearing in mind that it was first released in 1998 it still looks pretty good, and in it’s day it was truly ground-breaking. It also used a physics engine that was the best of
    its time and an AI that performed far better than any other. Almost everything you could want is here: a good variety of environments, some satisfying puzzles, and some challenging combat. It also has, within the obvious limits of a shooter, a solid and engaging story. All of this makes for a game that keeps you entertained from start to finish and never outstays its welcome. Great stuff and it gets much much better with Half-Life Expand
  64. May 3, 2013
    10
    Half-Life is one of the best games ever made.

    The action is set in the fictional Black Mesa Research Facility, where the player takes the role of Doctor Gordon Freeman, a Ph. D, MIT Theoretical Physics scientist.
    So the beginning is nothing really special, but the action itself begins only after the disaster.
    After being late, Gordon steps in his HEV Suit MK IV, and enters the chamber
    where they test a special crystal from a borderworld called Xen.

    During the preparations, the scientist make a mistake by settings the Anti-Mass Spectrometer at 105% causing malfunction, and after inserting the crystal in the spectrometer, everything goes wrong.
    The machine doesn't respond and in the same time numerous alien creatures enter Earth and the facility through outnumbered portals opened during the incident.

    After this Gordon must fight his way outside the facility, which is a hard job after the facility goes infested with aliens, and even more, zombies.

    After seeing the disaster, the Marines are called to ,,clean,, the mess, and destroy the facility. Until the end of the game, Gordon rapidly becomes the prime target for the marines, who now must eliminate him, considering that the mess is only his fault, and eventually temporary captures him.

    During the game, Gordon must solve puzzles, and is also helped on his way by security guards and scientist pinned down in the facility.

    Until the end, Gordon makes his way in a last refuge of the remaining science team, where he finds out that the rocket(that he previously launched) didn't make full effect, and the portals were still kept opened from the other side.

    As I already gave some spoilers, I won't reveal the next parts.

    The game play is just pure awesomeness.

    Gordon uses many real weapons such as mp5, 9mm Glock Pistol, Spas-12 Shotguns and others, to fight his way out the facility.

    The AI is really good, the enemies aren't blindly attacking the player and other suicidal things, and using their own tactics to stop the player.

    The game features some scripted sequences, that makes the game feel more cinematic, but not a ridiculous amount, and just where needed.

    Also the game itself is linear, so there aren't many places you can miss during the game, but there are some, and still, even so, the game feels fluent, and the story doesn't really seem to be forced.

    But even so, the game has a great replay value, and has a real memorable journey.

    The graphics aren't ground-breaking, but even nowadays looks kind of decent, but outdated compared to others.

    The game also features an both integrated, and separate multiplayer(the separate one is called Half-Life: Deathmatch), with no kind of plot, separate from the story, just in the same universe and just for fun, by being able to nuke some maps, where you must get in time inside the protected place to not get killed, but the game can also contain and be played on coop maps, in which you must complete the map's objective, solve puzzles, but also kill enemies here and there to progress.

    Also due to the very friendly engine, the game can be very easily modded, by adding new maps, re-create the original weapons, sounds and more, or even make separate mods from the original game, which led to the creation of one of the biggest modding communities, most notable mods being Sven Co-Op, Black Operations, Life's End, but many many others.

    There game also inspired a re-creation, called Black Mesa, being a total Source recreation of the original game, with same levels, but better physics, and graphics.

    So my final word for the game is that is a masterpiece, with very little flaws(this ones being only bugs and minor glitches), and deserves to be played numerous times.
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  65. May 1, 2013
    10
    Half-life was and still is a great PC games, although it lacks the graphics, it's still the horror experience that was promised! I enjoyed every bit of it and the chills every time I played through the dark, quite, alien infested environment that gave you surprises lurking around every corner! Now this is what I call an FPS classic!
  66. Apr 20, 2013
    10
    A game from 1998 still kicks some newer games' asses! Good old times playing this game! I've enjoyed every single bit of it, good environments, great story line, not that much variety of NPCs or Aliens though its enough. Its funny how it actually costs more than HL2 but well, its really worth it.
  67. Mar 26, 2013
    8
    Dr. Freeman is a pretty cool game, he diagnosed me with ichthyophobia and doesn't afraid of anything. 8/10.
  68. Feb 27, 2013
    9
    While it hasn't aged well (play the Black Mesa mod for superior graphics), Half Life still can stand on its own feet as an excellent FPS. It has great game play, good story, and a truly epic ending. The enemies and weapons are varied and imaginative. My only major complaint is the engine. Early in the game, there are a multitude of block puzzles, which are quite frustrating to play on the gldsrc. engine, but this can be negated by using Half Life: Source, which is the same game on the source engine. This game is not without its flaws, but stands with the likes of Mario and Pac-Man as a timeless classic, and is worth playing on basis of historical value alone. Expand
  69. Feb 27, 2013
    10
    Half life...There are so much adjetives to describe this game but it will take longer than 5000 characters because it not only got some good graphics, animation, argument (a distant feature in fps games) but its got all it can get. A perfect game that will not be forgotten....
  70. Feb 27, 2013
    6
    Half-life is a solid FPS, nothing more. The gameplay progresses at a decent rate, and is fairly well balanced, but that is about all you can say for the game. The cons are that the pacing is erratic, the aesthetics (at least for the first three quarters of the game) are bland and sterile, the story (as praised as it is) is shallow, cliched and irrelevant and there is nothing particularly original about the whole thing.
    I don't understand how this game (and its sequel) gets all the praise it does. I suppose it has a lot to do with the average level of FPSs at the time, which is depressing more than anything.
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  71. Feb 23, 2013
    10
    I am a huge half life fan, you may think that i am biased, but this game is best in whole wide world. Best graphics for its time and brilliant plot innovating game play. True oldschool shooter without iron sight, bleeding screen, auto restored hp and other casual things.
  72. Jan 26, 2013
    10
    One of the mile stones for PC Gaming production. Was one of the best innovative game for it's time - especially for game-play IF, graphic and innovative Map design_ In 1998, was really a big jump that has setted new standards in FPS/Game making at least for subsequent 5 years!
  73. Jan 25, 2013
    7
    I actually had a lot of fun with this game. The weapons are fair and the ammo consumption is enough to deter you from using the heavy weapons on grunts.

    The only things keeping me from going higher than an 8 are the minor system discrepancies and the story. It was very confusing, but that's partially my fault for not wearing headphones. It's difficult to hear dialogue without headphones
    and lack of a captioning system makes it impossible to know what's going on if you're not wearing headphones.
    The saving system is also hard to work with. There was no autosave feature, so I had to force myself to save every 5 minutes or so.
    The last thing (I think this is really important) is the developer console. If you're familiar with the Source engine and the half life commands like I am, then it's just a few keystrokes to give you mac ammo/armor/health. With no achievements to deter the usage of "sv_cheats 1", this option is very appealing for those having trouble in the game.

    Overall, I thought this game was great. I've replayed it about 5 times for a total of 6 playthroughs just because I like some of the combat in it. I would suggest buying this game at full price if you want it because it is worth full price.
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  74. Jan 24, 2013
    10
    I'll never forget half life. It played a large part in defining my science fiction existence. No FPS had been anything like it before. This was largely in part due to scripted sequences. Instead of cutscenes, things actually played out infront of your eyes while you were still playing. It set the standard that nearly all games followed since then. The levels were also ingenius. Each level was its own separate level, but designed in a way to look like it was seamless. Level A would end in a hallway, a loading bar would pop up while it loaded level B, with the beginning of Level B looking just like that hallway. It gave a sense that you were never really removed from the game world.

    The storytelling was great as well. Instead of just being overloaded with cheesey information, you start off simply as a regular scientist working in a secret underground research facility somewhere in the south US known as Black Mesa. While performing a landmark experiment despite safety concerns from officials, you accidentally open a portal to an alien world. This experiment causes a "resonance cascade effect" (whatver that means) which causes temporal rifts to open throughout the entire facility, warping in hostile alien forces. The entire game is a story about surviving against all odds. The plot thickens even further as US Special forces are sent in. When you first see them you think "Awesome, backup!" but soon find out they aren't there to rescue you: they're there to destroy you & all the evidence with it.

    It thickens even further when you advance through the game, you hear the Special forces are pulling out because its too much for even them to handle and you get the hint they are about to nuke the entire facility into oblivion.

    One of the reasons the storyline is so great is because its so plausible. The actions from the scientists to the Special forces makes sense. If Half Life actually happened, it would very likely play out something like the game. Nothing turns me off more than an implausible story.

    From the scripted sequences of scientists screaming by on a falling elevator, survivors in vents scared out of their minds, half life delivers an incredible variety of experiences. Action, suspense, hopelessness, triumph, uncertainty. While playing, you really couldn't predict what would happen next which is always one of the signs of a good story.

    A real 10/10, and it isn't awarded lightly either.
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  75. Jan 19, 2013
    10
    This review contains spoilers, click expand to view. Gra rewolucyjna, nawet dziś przyjemnie się gra mimo wiekowej technologi (jak na dzisiejsze czasy), zaś wątek fabularny każący przetrwać i odkrywać jak skończy się incydent w Black Mesie oraz poznawanie coraz to nowych zagrożeń oraz zagadek czyni tą grę w wielu przypadkach nawet lepszą pod względem fabuły od dzisiejszych arcydzieł /strzelanek, dokładając do tego naprawdę długą rozgrywkę potrzebną na przejście gry oraz niesamowity multiplayer na którym wzorowano wiele późniejszych produkcji. Suma tych wszystkich zalet pozwala tej grze nawet dziś mierzyć się z światowymi Hitami. Expand
  76. Jan 8, 2013
    10
    One of the most influential games of all time, not only influencing the first-person genre, but also spawning so many great spin-offs and sequels such as Half-Life 2, Portal, L4D, Team Fortress, Counter-Strike etc.
  77. Dec 30, 2012
    10
    Half Life is a "one of a kind" gaming experience, the kind that pushes the game industry forward. Thanks to his amazing storytelling, his challenging gameplay and human-like enemies' A.I., Half Life keeps you glued to the screen from the first to the last frame. A must play even after 14 years from his release.
  78. Dec 25, 2012
    10
    I am sure that this is best game ever made. Best feeling, best music, sounds, environment... Valve should make some similar game with GoldSrc engine...
  79. Dec 17, 2012
    9
    One of the best games ever made. There's not much I can say about this that hasn't been said already. If you haven't played it pick this and the sequel up; the expansions are optional but worth your time for the most part (Opposing Force and Episode 2 are fantastic).
  80. Dec 12, 2012
    10
    Ah this game is so amazing... You could say that all games that came after this took so much inspiration of it. Really it's the best game ever made. I have finished it now 68 times and still I find so much new and cool. If someone hasn't played this I will make him/her to play, because no wonder it has the best single-player experience. PLAY IT NOW!
  81. Nov 24, 2012
    7
    Superb game: amazing story and longevity, it hardly ever makes you bored. If you do not like this game, you can't be a real gamer: these are the real games! Not the new ones that you complete in 45 minutes.
  82. Nov 14, 2012
    10
    One of the greatest games of all time, the amazing atmosphere still carries through to this day. Revolutionary game play at the time and still fun to this day.
  83. Oct 12, 2012
    9
    After many years its release, Half-Life is able to amuse gamers,only because is a product really well done;
    available on steam, it's crazy let it get away
  84. Oct 6, 2012
    10
    Half-life is a timeless, genre re-defining classic that will forever serve as an influential template for first person shooters. It has served as a manifesto for countless FPS's in the last decade and a half and raised the storytelling medium to unprecedented heights.
  85. Oct 2, 2012
    10
    The iconic game Half-life made by valve is a must-play game. Its graphic hols up to this day and the gameplay is amazing. A great story-line which is delivered by a great number of subtle hints instead of interrupting in-game videos showing how the story progresses. Revolutionary in its time and a great inspiration for other classics, this game is definitely worth a try 10/10.
  86. Sep 21, 2012
    9
    At this point, you can just get Black Mesa for free and have done with it. Black Mesa gets a 9/10 because it's not without its bugs and annoyances, but it surpasses HL1 on quite a few fronts.
  87. Aug 25, 2012
    9
    Half Life. One of the games that revolutionized the FPS genre. It has a good story, great gameplay and good graphics (for that time). The protagonist, Gordon Freeman, has no defined personality, but I guess Valve wanted the player to imagine what Gordon says and thinks throughout the game. A bit repetitive with it's puzzles, but it shouldn't hinder you from having fun with it.
  88. Aug 18, 2012
    10
    I just want to know those 26 idiots and 100 retards who gave a low score to such gaming gem. I hope they're just 10 years old kids, in that case it's ok, but if they're adult people I really have shame for them.
  89. Aug 8, 2012
    10
    Dont waste your time reading negative reviews, they are all written by illiterate morons with no taste in video games. Either that, or they never gave the game more than 10 minutes until likely getting bored because it wasn't Call of Duty Modern Black Assault Ops Warfare 5
  90. Aug 4, 2012
    10
    For the people who hate this game, or think is overrated, stop kidding yourselves. This game really deserves its place. for the people who wished for a speech log, give it some thought: Does your life have a speech log? In this game it is your choice to ignore or listen to people. Some weapons are common, but some of them are exotic, brand new, and fantastic. The story is told without even the need of cutscenes. If you didn't get the story... well, ehmargehrd.

    Good points everywhere. Even the Xen zone gave me more than I expected from this game.

    The bad point of this game is that it doesn't autosave. I played for 3 hours without saving... yes, right in the heart. You can choose chapters, but it's not the same. You need to press F6 (Quick save) almost every 2 min if you want to play it without trouble.

    My two brothers hate the HL series just because the graphics aren't like MW3. If you are like them, and like games just because graphics, you're missing some of the best games of the world.

    Games like HL only come once in a lifetime.
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  91. Jul 29, 2012
    9
    This game produced one of the greatest Mod's of all time: CounterStrike. And only because of that it well deserved this epic score! But only because i never actually played through the game i can only give it a 9
  92. Jul 26, 2012
    10
    This game will forever be among my personal favorites. Great story and amazing gameplay, the environments and maps are well designed and the sound is great. Had a lot of fun.
  93. Jul 19, 2012
    10
    The Half-life1 Series of games are storytelling masterpieces!
    Still the best fps games ive ever played,There Gameplay/puzzles/Atmosphere really set the mold for all modern fps.
  94. Jul 1, 2012
    10
    Just hands down one of the best FPS games ever made. The story captured my interest from the first few minutes and I sat down for three days straight to finish the game. After you beat it, it doesn't have a whole lot of replay value, but man, I really liked this game. It was cool, it showed me how much fun playing on my PC could be. It helped me be more of a PC gamer and it always had me hoping to catch up to that guy in the black suit! It has some "flaws" like the awkward NPCs...there are like 40 of the same scientist and the same security guards, but it just makes it kind of funny and isn't really something worth criticizing in my opinion. Great game. Expand
  95. Jun 18, 2012
    10
    For a game made in 1998; it's quite impressive. Story line is unique and keeps the player wanting more. Graphics are a bit more advanced than most game's in the 90's. Completely worth the time and money, especially if your'e a fan of the half-life series.
  96. Jun 11, 2012
    10
    This game is where it all began. No, it may not be as fancy and adventurous as some of the new games coming out, but if you want to sit down with a classic, here's the one. It's challenging, creative, full of options, pretty well balanced for it's age, and it gets you to think outside the -orange- box, haha.
  97. May 24, 2012
    9
    I downloaded the demo when this first came out with no real expectations and it was one of a kind and insanely good! It looked and played excellent on my 133mhz 16meg ram and 2 meg graphics card computer... The best thing about Half Life was it's unique atmosphere which every element of the game contributed to.
  98. May 24, 2012
    10
    This is the best game i have ever played, yes kids "old" games are sometimes better than the actual games, if you think that a game it's great just for it's graphics there's something wrong with you.
    if it wasn't for games like Half-life, Doom and Wolfenstein 3d, games like call of duty or halo would have never existed, that's it we owe all FPS games to Half-life, Doom and Wolfenstein 3d.
  99. May 23, 2012
    10
    Half-Life 2 being my favourite game of all time, making this a close contender. Half-Life was the first game I ever acquired on my first computer. I can keep coming back to it as it never gets old.
  100. Sep 16, 2010
    0
    Gaming perfection, resulting in the quality of gaming we know today. Map design was genius for the time, when most games lacked puzzle elements, weapon design and a.i. was also top notch. Everything from the safe feeling the start had until the ending on xen was a joy ride with constant new equipment and weapons.
Metascore
96

Universal acclaim - based on 24 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 24 out of 24
  2. Mixed: 0 out of 24
  3. Negative: 0 out of 24
  1. It isn't everyday that you come across a game that totally revolutionizes an entire genre, but Half-Life has done just that.
  2. The storyline runs in perfect harmony with the action and acts as a conduit not a stopgap, or a padding device. Each gaming element compliments the next and the entire presentation is nothing short of, well…dare we say it…revolutionary.
  3. This is The Big One, and it's even better than we could've hoped. [Jan 1999, p.166]