Universal acclaim - based on 69 Critic Reviews

Critic score distribution:
  1. Positive: 67 out of 69
  2. Negative: 0 out of 69
  1. May 15, 2020
    A special mention should be made of the game's dialog, mainly consisting of Alyx herself and Russel, a scientist who Alex remains in constant communication with throughout the game. Their relationship feels genuine, the conversations between them are enjoyable, and almost all of the intended comedic moments land perfectly, which is something most video games seem to have trouble with.
  2. Apr 8, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx picks up the baton and carries it much further than anybody ever expected of a VR title, let alone a "spin-off" title that isn't technically Half-Life 3. In short, Half-Life: Alyx is here, and it's the real deal. And while I can see myself replaying it many times in the near future, the only question I have now is: "What's next?"
  3. Apr 8, 2020
    Fans have waited an absurd amount of time for a Half-Life game in any form, but when you're playing, the wait is really the furthest thing from your mind. Alyx is so completely captivating that as soon as you put it down, you want to talk to someone about it, get them to play it, really do anything you can to make them feel the same awe that you do. Like any great VR experience, it's something you can't possibly understand fully until you try it, but once you do, it's hard to recognize Alyx as anything other than a monumental achievement.
  4. Apr 8, 2020
    I genuinely cannot find a real fault with this game. Sound design is incredible, the visuals are stunning, the story exceeds all expectations, combat and puzzle design manage to remain true to what fans would want, while also seamlessly translating themselves to the VR space, there is humor, there is horror, everything comes together and creates the perfect Half-Life game. This is the game that VR was waiting for, this is the game that VR was built for, and if you have VR technology, you owe it to yourself to play this game. If you have been waiting for the right game to come along and make the VR purchase worth it, Half-Life: Alyx is it.
  5. Apr 7, 2020
    Be it presentation, length, variety, or simple gameplay polish, Half-Life: Alyx is one that beats its peers cleanly. If you aren’t yet interested in virtual reality or you have not yet taken the plunge, then I would strongly recommend that you consider investing in the technology to play this game. It’s the closest thing to a killer app that VR is going to get any time soon. The format still has its shortcomings and likely always will, but with Half-Life: Alyx, it’s very close to realizing its full potential. If you think back to the first time that you visualized what VR would look like and feel like, then you probably envisioned something very similar to what Half-Life: Alyx has to offer. It’s immersive, exciting, terrifying, and exhilarating – everything that you would hope for a virtually reality game to be.
  6. Mar 31, 2020
    A groundbreaking experience that makes the world of Half-Life more tangible than you could imagine.
  7. Mar 30, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx is a perfect example of what happens if you wait a little while before jumping into a new platform. It perfects many mechanics from other games while adding in a layer of polish that only Valve could manage. It’s equal parts enchanting and terrifying, and it’s sure to be one of the turning points in VR for many of us.
  8. Mar 30, 2020
    When all is said and done and everyone has had the chance to play it for themselves, I have no doubt that Alyx will be held in the same lofty regard as the first two Half-Life entries. It really is that good. Of course, I still want Half-Life 3, but it turns out that I wanted this even more and didn’t know it.
  9. Mar 30, 2020
    Although it doesn´t perfect every single thing it does, the experience as a whole cannot be called anything short of a masterpiece.
  10. Mar 29, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx is a revolution not only in the field of virtual reality, but in that of video games in general.
  11. Mar 28, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx is truly the new standard bearer for virtual reality. This is a major, not to say revolutionary, title, as was Half-Life and Half-Life 2 in their time. For more than 10 hours of play, we live the horrifying, supernatural and science fiction adventures of Alyx, as if we were there. A Masterpiece!
  12. Mar 27, 2020
    Half-life 3 this ain’t, then. But Alyx might actually be something better: an awe-inspiring amalgamation of atmospherics and immersion which does for VR gaming what its forebears did for the first person shooter genre all those years ago. And while it’s a shame the steep price of entry will prevent a significant number of fans from experiencing its majesty, those who do will likely emerge from this most sensational form of self-isolation with their view of the world altered forever.
  13. Mar 27, 2020
    Alyx is the Half-Life 3 we wanted. The most important and ambitious game in VR, that knows how to make the most of it and deliver a great adventure with a great story.
  14. 100
    ll future VR games will look to Half Life: Alyx as the gold standard hereon, and thanks to its absolute excellence in design and presentation we are all the better for it. Virtual reality will never be the same, nor will Half Life after Alyx's jaw-dropping conclusion.
  15. Mar 25, 2020
    Genre-bending and hauntingly mesmerizing, Half-Life: Alyx brings the series as it should have always been experienced while doing the impossible: surpassing Half Life 2.
  16. Mar 25, 2020
    The results of this suffusion are nothing short of spectacular, delivering an expertly crafted Half-Life tale inside a knockout VR experience.
  17. Mar 23, 2020
    You know perfectly well that Valve wasn’t going to make a flagship VR title using its beloved Half-Life franchise and do a half-arsed job. A stunningly rich experience from start to finish, Half-Life: Alyx is one of the best VR titles available, a perfect showcase for what VR gaming is capable of. It doesn’t exactly break new ground, instead providing familiar Half-Life gameplay all wrapped up in a highly polished VR gift bag. Let’s just hope this is the start of things to come and Valve decides to make another Half-Life: Alyx.
  18. Mar 23, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx is one of the most richly detailed and immersive VR games to date, and a stunning take on the iconic franchise for virtual reality; City 17 and the sci-fi conflict at its core are incredibly well-realized throughout. Though it's slower than the run-and-gun pace of the originals, Alyx feels like a Half-Life game through and through as it successfully shifts between combat, exploration, puzzles, and even some notable horror. While the game doesn't offer much in the way of mechanical innovation, and the roster of weapons and enemies left something to be desired, Valve has polished the game to a bright sheen, the result of which is an absolute must-play experience.
  19. Mar 23, 2020
    Alyx leaves you with the lingering suspicion that there is yet more ground to cover, that there’s far more this series and this developer can do with this new set of tools and that this is only the first part of that story. Though you’ll find yourself hungry for more, there’s something comforting in the knowledge that, for Valve, this is the dawn of a new era. Half-Life: Alyx makes good on its second chance, it is as essential a VR game as you’ll find in 2020, but perhaps the most exciting thing about it is the message is that the best is yet to come.
  20. Mar 23, 2020
    Alyx has been the last week of my life, switching between this virtual reality world and the horror of our actual existence. In a week where we’ve had all the time to do what we want, it’s been hard to do anything but think. Alyx is the only thing that has grabbed my attention away, like an alien barnacle waiting high above with a hungry mouth and a sticky tongue.
  21. Mar 23, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx has set a new bar for VR in interactivity, detail, and level design, showing what can happen when a world-class developer goes all-in on the new frontier of technology.
  22. Mar 23, 2020
    As an experience built from the ground up for immersion and creating a fully-realized world, Half-Life: Alyx is truly a game-changer for VR.
  23. Mar 23, 2020
    A stunning return for Half-Life and an essential VR purchase - if you have the required equipment and space.
  24. Mar 28, 2020
    Valve selects the best features of VR action games and takes them to another level. Half-Life: Alyx is not innovative in choosing what is needed for the perfect virtual reality experience – between interactivity of the environment, gestural use of firearms or environmental puzzles – but it is in putting together everything in the style of Half-Life. The kind of first person game that made the series famous, and forever changed the action adventure into a "before and after Gordon Freeman", returns to linear origins without genres contamination, becoming an immersive sim only for what falls within our view, or what we can physically accomplish in a crazy City 17. Masterful.
  25. Mar 23, 2020
    I'm not going to say that Half-Life: Alyx is the reason to get a VR headset, as that would be a disservice to the entertaining gameplay experiences that have been done well within VR. Rather, I will say that Half-Life: Alyx is perhaps the first VR game that gets close to making the player feel like they are a tangible part of the world. It represents some of the absolute best that VR technology can offer right now, and I would point to this particular game for anyone who wants to decide for themselves if VR is "worth it." This title couldn't have been done any other way; Alyx is a masterful addition to anyone's VR game library.
  26. Apr 7, 2020
    When all the mechanics aligned and I started to execute with finesse, I came to a stirring conclusion. Half Life: Alyx didn’t need to do something unexpected. It needed to prove that all the tools for making a brilliant VR experience – one with an impactful story, fun and fluid combat, and an entrancing world – already exist, and then execute. It has done that, and it shattered my expectations from start to finish. If you’ve yet to make the VR leap, Half Life: Alyx is an extraordinary reason to do so. It’s the best VR game yet, and maybe, just maybe, the best in the Half Life franchise.
  27. Dec 21, 2020
    Half-Life Alyx is proof that Valve is still at its best creatively. This emblematic franchise has been brought to virtual reality; in Alyx we enjoy an immersion never seen before, with comfortable and intuitive mechanics as well as excellent visuals and atmosphere that accompany this interesting adventure within the iconic saga.
  28. CD-Action
    Apr 17, 2020
    Alyx proves that Valve is still capable of great things; it shows what VR should be and what it will be in the future. A new beginning for virtual reality and gaming in whole. [05/2020, p.52]
  29. Apr 16, 2020
    Half Life Alyx is the game that VR needed. The story is good, technically it's a delicious piece of cake and the gameplay is Half Life at its best. You need a powerful PC and the VR helmet, but it's worth it.
  30. Apr 6, 2020
    I had such an incredible time going back into the Half-Life universe, and in VR. It's outstanding. The story is full of surprises as you can expect from a Half-Life game. A true AAA experience in VR, Half-Life: Alyx is a triumphant return for Valve—even if you aren't playing as Gordon Freeman.
  31. Apr 3, 2020
    An incredible, best-in-class achievement that could only be done in VR, with excellent voice acting, sublime visuals and audio and, yes, a truly Half-Life story.
  32. Mar 30, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx has shown the great potential of VR and set a very high standard for the whole industry. It's definitely a must-buy game for VR gamers.
  33. 95
    I'd declare Half-Life: Alyx the new age of the first-person shooter, if the uptake of virtual reality had been a little more promising so far. It is a cut above everything I've ever played within a headset and it's a brave, risky step for a long-dormant series to take. It takes a special team to withhold for thirteen years and deliver on an impossible hype and yet Half-Life: Alyx was worth every one of those 4,548 days.
  34. Mar 30, 2020
    With Half-Life: Alyx, Valve has proved once again that they are the best. After a few underwhelming projects like Artifact or Dota Underlords, the developers went back to their roots and created a superb single-player game. Alyx has a great storyline with fun characters and offers unique gameplay utilizing a technology capable of delivering a new experience. This VR title is a true revelation.
  35. Mar 28, 2020
    This is a triumph in almost every way. This is the most detailed, deepest and most elaborate VR game yet. No other VR game has so much variety and depth at the same time, combined with such a perfect tempo.
  36. Mar 24, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx is the best VR game ever made and also a very cool Half-Life game, which everyone should have played. If you were still waiting for that killer app for VR, now is the time to finally go for it.
  37. Mar 23, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx is the new bar for Virtual Reality. Valve has made a game so realistic, immersive and detailed that we can consider it a main iteration of Half-Life. Only its story, something fair in what it contributes to the saga, prevents it from achieving a perfect score.
  38. Mar 25, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx is the new benchmark for future VR products. More generally, it is a magnificent game, the worthy heir of an immortal saga: an adventure that has nothing to envy among those episodes that have contributed to mark the history of gaming.
  39. Mar 23, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx is an incredible demonstration of what can be done with virtual reality. Nobody, so far, has put the amount of resources and research that Valve did. This might not be the killer application VR needs, but it’s an excellent game, worthy of the main series of Half-Life.
  40. Game World Navigator Magazine
    May 21, 2020
    It’s a good thing that Valve didn’t add a digit to the title: from Half-Life 3 we expect nothing short of revolution, while Alyx is “merely” an amazing game. [Issue#245, p.50]
  41. Mar 27, 2020
    Just as Half-Life 2 has changed the FPS world forever, Alyx could change the VR world forever.
  42. Mar 23, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx redefines the word experience. Unfortunately, only in VR. And then again, luckily only in VR, because what Valve delivers here is exactly what VR fans have been hoping for for years: a system seller that makes virtual reality interesting even for people who have not had any interest in it before. And not just because of the name Half-Life, but because of the quality.
  43. Mar 23, 2020
    With old friends, new enemies, and an exciting story, revisiting City 17 in VR is a thrill in Half-Life: Alyx.
  44. Apr 28, 2020
    Valve has once again tried to revolutionize the gaming industry with a Half-Life game. With Alyx they've tackled the complicated realm of VR creating an experience miles ahead of anything available in this format. It's way more than just a spin off or an experiment from Valve, it's a game that can stand toe to toe with all the other chapters of this iconic saga. In a certain way, Valve finally gave us a third Half-Life game and it was worth the wait.
  45. Apr 16, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx is an incredible journey, worth every second of the nineteen hours from start to epic finish, and an adventure worthy not only of the Half-Life name but also the enhanced expectations that grew during the series’ thirteen year absence.
  46. Apr 8, 2020
    A truly triple-A game for VR that could very well exist on its own, without the immersion provided by virtual reality. This is a must-have title for everybody who owns a VR headset and a strong reason to buy one for everybody else.
  47. Apr 3, 2020
    There have been many moments that have left me breathless.
  48. Mar 28, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx is a true Half-Life, a real game that lives inside our VR system and expands the dimension made by a videogame.
  49. Mar 28, 2020
    We can't thank Valve enough for finally allowing us to dive back into the heart of City 17, especially with a real game that makes the most of the latest VR technologies and innovations. The recurring loading screens do break the rhythm a bit, but that's probably the price to pay to be able to enjoy such detailed graphics and good animations. The excellent physics management not only increases the immersion level, but allows us to exploit interesting gameplay axes as well. We wished we had a little more weapons, different enemies and the ability to fight with every item available, but hats off anyway.
  50. Mar 28, 2020
    Alyx doesn't propel VR to unseen heights, nor does it overcome the limitations of the platform. What it does is provide an exceptional name-brand experience that is extraordinarily polished and just about the best example of what VR has to offer right now. Every puzzle is satisfying, every gunfight is a thrill. The environments are beautifully horrifying and the interactables are absurdly detailed. It has no lulls, nothing ever gets played out or boring. It has a ton of fan service and builds some really exciting hype for the future of the series. However, I wish that the game built its core mechanics over time the way Portal 2 so famously did.
  51. Edge Magazine
    Mar 26, 2020
    What the game asks of you might be fairly standard shooter stuff, but the act of playing it out with your own hands lends it a fresh magic. That's Alyx in a nutshell: this is a Half-Life game almost to a fault, the old formula polished to a 2020 shine, made new again by the way you manipulate it. The Gloves aren't the new crowbar or Gravity Gun, the defining tool of Half-Life: Alyx. Your own hands are. [Issue#344, p.102]
  52. Mar 25, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx sets a new high standard for VR games, both in technical terms and gameplay itself. Visually impressive and customizable for accessibility, Alyx's 20-hour campaign strikes an enjoyable balance between action, horror, puzzle-solving, and humor. VR gamers shouldn't miss this one.
  53. Mar 23, 2020
    Intuitive, designed professionally and with a stirring presentation, Half-Life Alyx is in a league of its own – not only visually.
  54. Mar 23, 2020
    Half Life: Alyx is a must-play game worthy of the series' legacy. Despite some puzzles and encounters that feel like filler, the overall experience is strong. The stunning setpieces, beautiful world, and smart writing stand out no matter the medium, and mark a return to form for Valve. If you were waiting for a killer app before you made the investment into virtual reality, this is it.
  55. Mar 23, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx is both the nugget that virtual reality has been waiting for, but also the one that VR deserved ... A game that is both beautiful, spectacular, addictive, accessible and flexible, which allows you to rally under the same banner the best ideas developed in the FPS VR sector, to offer them a standard of high-end finishes, and to accompany them with excellent game design and staging features. Valve proves here that it always knows how to develop great games and that its legendary saga is not so "dead and buried" as that.
  56. Mar 23, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx isn't quite as revolutionary as you might hope, particularly if you're already well-versed in virtual reality, but it's undoubtedly one of the best games on the platform and hopefully the start of a resurgence for both the series and the hardware.
  57. Mar 23, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx is billed as a VR return to the series, and that's exactly what it delivers. It does what Half-Life has historically done well, and without the clouding of nostalgia or unhelpful notions of what constitutes "revolutionary" design, it ranks alongside Half-Life 2. It is a full-length VR experience that both needs to be in VR, but that uses the tech to more strongly evoke the same feelings you got with a mouse and keyboard years ago. There are some small flaws that are no more annoying than over-long sewer odysseys or having to crouch jump were in past games, and its spectacle hits the hardest of any in the series. It sets Half-Life up for a compelling future—here's hoping we see it.
  58. Mar 23, 2020
    This is hands-down the best virtual reality money can buy right now, and feels like a tantalizing promise of just what the big game studios could achieve if they were willing to put their time and money into creating a AAA experience for VR platforms.
  59. Mar 23, 2020
    Confidently serves as both a vindication for the magic VR can bring to gaming, and a satisfying new entry in the beloved Half-Life series.
  60. Mar 23, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx proves that almost everything the franchise did best is elevated by VR: the environmental puzzles that require a keen eye, the threat of a headcrab jumping for your face, the cryptic storytelling. The series' staples are as great as ever here, and in its most powerful moments, Half-Life: Alyx confidently shows you why it couldn't have been done any other way.
  61. Mar 23, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx is a wonderful new addition to the franchise and sets a path forward for future games to take place in the same universe hopefully powered by this latest iteration of the Source Engine. Valve has showcased a clear way for developers to create a high quality AAA experience built for VR that still hits all the marks of a traditional PC game. While many players will be longing for the days of playing as the silent hero Gordon Freeman, it was an absolute delight to navigate this latest story. "I knew if you both stayed together you could get through anything,“ said G-Man once upon a time, but Alyx showed everyone just how powerful of a bad ass she is when tasked with her own adventure.
  62. Mar 23, 2020
    Valve has surpassed impossible expectations with Half-Life: Alyx, bringing a series long though buried back into the limelight with extraordinary impact. While some might find it unfortunate that such an experience is housed inside virtual reality, I feel it's an innovative step forward for the series…A book has been opened that will seemingly stay as such for years to come, and words are still being written as we speak. If this prequel is anything to go by, Valve might have finally learned to count to three. If you have the means to play it, Half-Life: Alyx is absolutely essential.
  63. Mar 23, 2020
    This is legit, folks. A 10-12 hour Half-Life might finally be enough for you to spring for a VR headset. We can only hope it similarly reinvigorated Valve.
  64. Apr 3, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx is a tremendous VR experience that should absolutely set the standard of quality for all VR games to come. But the lack of replayability value, and the scale factor of enjoyment dependent on your hardware and room size, holds Alyx back from being a truly astonishing game. Is it worth it alone to buy a headset for? I’m not sure, that depends on how big of a Half-Life fan you are. But I can say that there are tonnes of other VR games available that are worth buying a headset for already, and Half-Life Alyx will still be a significant entry in that list of games.
  65. Mar 23, 2020
    An incredible technical achievement but one that is surprisingly short of genuinely new ideas, and often struggles to get the balance right between VR showpiece and satisfying gameplay experience.
  66. Mar 23, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx isn’t as good as it could be, mostly because of some sequences that drag on for too long, the multi-tool which just isn’t fun to use and some uninspired design choices. Nevertheless, Valve has created a very good VR-shooter and a worthy entry in the Half-Life-series. Just don’t expect it to blow you away the way Half-Life 2 did back in 2004.
  67. Mar 23, 2020
    It's an incredibly immersive experience. It's just one I didn't really want to be immersed in right now.
  68. 70
    While it doesn’t break the mold, Half-Life: Alyx provides a polished, AAA VR experience.
  69. Apr 1, 2020
    Too often Half-Life: Alyx feels like baby's first VR shooter and for many — especially those who purchased VR hardware to play it — this isn't a dealbreaker. But trading off the Half-Life name for an introductory course to VR relegates HL: Alyx to spin-off territory when the characters involved and the story it tells could be so much more. Alyx Vance deserves better, and so too do VR gamers.
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  1. Mar 23, 2020
    The finished product accomplished what it needed to: it proved that Valve still knows how to make a classic single-player adventure—one that will inspire a whole new generation of game fans. It left me hungry for more, which is saying something for a single-player game of this length and scope. The masses may not rush out to buy a VR set to play Half-Life: Alyx. But anyone who loves video games should look at this game as a next logical step in the possibilities of dramatic, interactive storytelling. Bravo, Valve. Bravo. [Ars Technica Approved]
  2. Mar 30, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx is nothing short of mesmerising...This is real innovation. Just put on the headset and see for yourself.
  3. Mar 23, 2020
    I played mostly on the Valve Index, but I also played on an Oculus Quest, through a USB-C link cable beta that turns the Quest into a PC-compatible VR headset. It worked surprisingly well in a pinch, but the Quest suffers some lag and controller tracking hiccups with my review build.
  4. Mar 23, 2020
    City 17 provides the setting for a VR adventure filled with brilliant detailing. [Eurogamer Recommended]
  5. Mar 23, 2020
    Half-Life: Alyx reaches some astoundingly high heights while also managing to be both too ambitious and too conservative for its own good.
  6. Mar 23, 2020
    The only thing left is whether hardcore fans will be willing to buy, and use, a virtual reality headset in order to learn what happens next in the world of Half-Life. The good news is that those who do will experience what is likely the best VR game released to date.
  7. But mainly I just yearn for more Half-Life, in whatever form Valve wants to deliver it. It was about three hours after reaching the game’s thrilling, won’t-spoil-it, can’t-wait-to-talk-about-it conclusion that a thought occurred to me: for a brief moment I had a new Half-Life game to play, and now, again, I do not. I hope I don’t have to wait for brain-computer interfaces to exist before the series returns again, because despite a handful of complaints, I still think Valve make the best first-person shooters around. [RPS Bestest Bests]
  8. Mar 23, 2020
    I still think Alyx is genuinely worth the trouble of finding a headset, if that’s feasible, and overlooking its flaws. This isn’t Valve at its most revelatory — but after waiting more than a decade, it’s the Half-Life story I didn’t know I wanted.
  9. Mar 23, 2020
    It’s also a performance hog of a video game. My PC is quickly aging, but my GTX 1080 is usually able to brute force its way through a lot of things. Alyx, however, chewed away at my older CPU, despite the settings being at “low.” This didn’t prove bothersome for most of my time with Alyx—VR can get away with cutting corners on fidelity because of the way you interact with it—but there were a handful of sequences, especially towards the end when things ramp up, where my computer slowed to a crawl. It’s less fun to fight your way through a hallway of enemies when their animation is moving at half speed. Your mileage may vary...All the problems were worth it, though.
User Score

Universal acclaim- based on 2800 Ratings

User score distribution:
  1. Mar 23, 2020
    Don’t listen to the troll reviews! Valve has worked hard on this game and made it compatible for even the most affordable HMDs. There are moreDon’t listen to the troll reviews! Valve has worked hard on this game and made it compatible for even the most affordable HMDs. There are more ways to use movement, such as smooth locomotion instead of teleportation. Ladder movement has been fixed! The level design, sound design, graphics and puzzles are phenomenal. Full Review »
  2. Mar 24, 2020
    The revolution has began. Valve did it with the original Half-Life. Then pushed the limits with Half-Life 2. Now Alyx is here to bring us theThe revolution has began. Valve did it with the original Half-Life. Then pushed the limits with Half-Life 2. Now Alyx is here to bring us the future of videogames.

    Best Half-Life. Best AAA title. Best VR game. I have spoken.
    Full Review »
  3. Mar 23, 2020
    It’s really not that Hal-life, that was expected by fans for years. I think it is made for selling Vavle’s versions of VR. After BoneworksIt’s really not that Hal-life, that was expected by fans for years. I think it is made for selling Vavle’s versions of VR. After Boneworks it’s no pleasure to play Alyx. Full Review »