Metascore
90

Universal acclaim - based on 35 Critics

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 34 out of 35
  2. Negative: 0 out of 35
  1. 100
    The most immersing and compelling game I've ever played.
  2. 100
    Real 'bullet-time' isn't ballet; it's no-holds carnage that ends with a radio-transmitted flatline. It's one man making a difference; it's one game making a noise. Half-Life 2 is all that - and more.
  3. Long story short, Half-Life 2 is a must-buy, and our strongest choice for that one, last Xbox game to pick up before switching over to Xbox 360.
  4. As a single-player experience, even in its slightly compromised state, it's easily one of the most intensely enjoyable console shooters there's ever been.
  5. If you are passionate about your games then you cannot afford to miss what is arguably one of the three best Xbox titles ever made. Get it now.
  6. Half-Life 2 has impeccable style, an unrivalled elegance, and a frighteningly realistic aesthetic that no other game can even attempt to rival.
  7. It controls like a sportscar, it plays like a dream.
  8. If you've got an Xbox and want a superb gaming experience that will have you glued to your seat, sweaty palms and all for a solid 15-20 hours, absolutely buy Half-Life 2, no questions asked.
  9. I can easily say that I had just as much fun playing through the game on the Xbox as I first did on the PC, and probably even more so due to my personal preference of the controller over the keyboard.
  10. The graphics, albeit at a lower resolution (and with the occasional low frame rate) than the PC version, still make City 17 feel like a real place - not just a collection of videogame levels. [GamesMaster]
  11. 94
    The story itself is worth of great praise, but the way it's implemented into the gameplay, along with the amazingly fresh missions that all blend into one another, make this easily one of the best games on Xbox this year, if not the best.
  12. Going from mouse and keyboard to gamepad is always a hairy transition, but developer Valve did it perfectly--HL2 controls extremely well with the Xbox pad.
  13. A 15-20 hour masterpiece that, once finished, will have you turning around and starting right back at the start again!
  14. The character models are excellent with amazing facial expressions that include "tells." You can't always be sure that what people are saying to you because there is a level of body language that can be interpreted.
  15. You'll be hard pressed to find a more intelligent, involving and entertaining game on Xbox today - it even gives "Halo" a run for its money. [Official UK Xbox Magazine]
  16. The omission of a multi-player option is also baffling when you consider that Counter-Strike: Source was bundled free with last years PC version. These minor gripes, however, do little to detract from the sheer joy you will experience in playing the game.
  17. 90
    One of the finest games of this generation and one of the best single player FPS's ever created.
  18. A bit underwhelming. Yes, it's a fairly solid translation of one of the better first-person shooters of recent years, but it also lacks the extensive multiplayer and mod-making features of its PC cousin.
  19. 80
    We can't recommend Half-Life 2 if you already own it on PC because nothing has been added to warrant it buying it.
  20. Same invigorating missions, same tight controls, same relentless action, and same trigger-happy scientist in a one-man war against our alien overlords.
  21. 100
    Some may find the story too obtuse, while others might take the route of PC graphical snobbery, but rest assured that there is no other like Half-Life 2 for the Xbox, which has now become my all-time favorite title for the system, and a massively strong contender for the Xbox game of the year.
  22. 90
    Aside from a few tiny changes, Half-Life 2 on the Xbox is the PC game, right down to the last spattered droplets of alien blood. Half-Life 2's graphics set new standards for the Xbox, blowing right past heavyweights like "Doom 3" and "Halo 2."
  23. For console-only gamers, Valve's masterpiece is the definition of innovation and an unequivocal must-buy.
  24. The gunplay and unique physics have been perfectly recreated and the game is still one of the best that you'll play, but the inferior hardware means that none of it looks nearly as good as it does on the PC, and some unsightly frame rate hiccups mar the ocular experience.
  25. The story and scenario presentation is more than enough to keep you playing through Half-life 2.
  26. Valve has worked wonders translating this game over to Xbox. For Xbox owners who've not tackled the PC original, this is a must-buy game.
  27. Everything, from the brutal police state of the city, to the rundown tenements, to the ugly toxic sludge, to the gleaming sci-fi labs, looks beautiful. The textures are rich and sharp, bricks actually look like bricks and wood looks like wood.
  28. 95
    The game is surprisingly rock-solid on the Xbox. The controls are on point. The game is full of well-crafted fight-or-flight moments. It's without a doubt one of the finest first-person shooters ever made.
  29. Even when compared to the available titles in the X360 library, HL2 blows most of them out of the water, thanks to its story, presentation and overall enjoyable cinematic quality.
  30. The world is compelling in its visual completeness, serving up an inescapable web of despair, loneliness and isolation. [Jan 2006, p.38]
User Score
8.7

Generally favorable reviews- based on 101 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Positive: 53 out of 60
  2. Negative: 4 out of 60
  1. Jun 3, 2011
    10
    By far, Half Life 2 is a masterpiece on every level and one of the greatest FPS of all time in my books. The story is told well and the gameplay is amazing and addictive. Voice actors are great. There are so many levels of creativity in this game that it is just stunning. Full Review »
  2. Bill10
    Nov 18, 2005
    2
    Ok it looks ok but just face it the XBOX is just not made for first person shooters. the controls are just plain shit and the graphics are compaired to the pc just sub standard. FPS and RTS belong to the PC where they can be done correctly and the XBOx should just stick to platform and driving games this goes for the PS2 also. Full Review »
  3. Aug 26, 2011
    9
    Valve original creation had enormous critic scores, rabid fan base, and one of the most important games in the history ever. The engine by the time really looked very advanced compared to other games graphics, the details are ugly no denying in that point. The narration or how the story progress while not looking the same formula of cut-scenes it's outstanding. Great action, interaction, indeed the puzzles makes this a winner. Half-Life is a masterpiece with few flaws. Full Review »