Half-Life (1998)

4.33 from 410 votes
Take on the role of Gordon Freeman as he escapes the disastrous aftermath of an experiment gone wrong in the Black Mesa Research Facility.
First released
Nov 19, 1998
Aliases
HL1, HL, Half-Life: Source
Franchises
Half-Life
Developed by
Valve Corporation, Gearbox Software LLC
Published by
Sierra, Valve Corporation
Platforms
Mac, PlayStation 2, PC, Linux
Genres
First-Person Shooter
Themes
Horror, Sci-Fi
Rating
ESRB: M, OFLC: MA15+, PEGI: 16+
Releases
  • LIN - Half-Life United States
  • PC - Half-Life Platinum Collection United States
  • PC - Half-Life United States
  • PC - Half-Life Australia
  • PC - Half-Life (Game of the Year Edition) United States
  • PC - Half-Life (Platinum) United States
  • PC - Half-Life United Kingdom
  • PC - Half-Life (Platinum) United Kingdom
  • PC - Half-Life (Game of the Year Edition) United Kingdom
  • PC - Half-Life (Game of the Year Edition) Australia
  • PC - Half-Life 1 Anthology United Kingdom
  • PC - Half-Life (Steam) United States
  • PC - Half-Life 1 Anthology United States
  • PC - Half-Life 1 Anthology Japan
  • PC - Half-Life: Source United States
  • PC - Half-Life Deathmatch: Source United States
  • PC - Half-Life Generation United Kingdom
  • PS2 - Half-Life United States
  • PS2 - Half-Life United Kingdom

Community reviews

 
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*Warning: spoilers* Masterpiece of a game
After dodging the hype train for a long time, I thought it was finally time to try the original Half-Life in 2015. I was immediately hooked up and impressed how good the game was and, more importantly, how fantastic it held up today. This is one of the few games that kept me playing without ever boring me or forcing me through it, like some games. Every level was unique and featured a new mechanic of enemy.

You play as Gordon Freeman, the silent protagonist that is late for work at his job in the Black Mesa Research Facility. As part of an experiment, you casually put some sort of unknown crystal in a device called the anti-mass spectrometer. This goes horribly wrong, and everything explodes and a portal to another dimension, called Xen, is opened. Immediately, Xen aliens are going through the portal and attack every living soul in sight. The US military is also alerted and sends a special force called HECU to cover everything up, including you and the personal of Black Mesa.

Gordon learns of a way to close the portal and makes his way to the surface. He battles a giant tentacle monster, kills a lot more new alien species and tries to make his way to the other side of the facility. He gets captured by the HECU, is left for dead by the garbage compactor, escapes and makes his way to the Lambda Complex. He then learns that the portal is controlled by a mighty entity in the Xen world that keeps it open. He gets teleported with the aid of the scientists there to Xen and searches for the beast. He encounters the thing, called the Nihilanth, kills his ass and is then greeted by a slim, creepy figure of a man called G-Man. He is offered employment for G-Man and his buddies. If you refused, you get obliterated by a thousand soldiers. If you accept, you are put to sleep in wait of your next assignment.

For the time, this was a huge and epic story that still holds up today. It combines everything that makes an FPS great; killing enemies, hunting a boss, being chased by enemies, collecting enough ammo etc. The best part is the huge world you play in, the unique “real time” story telling rather than cut scenes and the puzzle solving that the game features.

The mechanics in Half-Life are unique. In the first place, it is your standard FPS, you collect different weapons, find ammo, kill enemies and move forward. But then you got the puzzle mechanics in which you need to stack boxes to reach a higher platform, navigating mazes, or figuring out what the best path will be to reach a certain area, without falling to your death. You also use the terrain a lot more than other games. When facing a strong enemy, you can use the environment for cover while fighting, something that is impossible in games like Doom and Duke Nukem.

Lastly, you got a badass HEV suit that grants you more protection and offers a ton of neat tools like a build in flashlight, oxygen for swimming sections, a compass, and your HUD. The suit absorbs a lot of damage and runs on a energy meter. When the suit is depleted, functions like the flashlight do not work anymore. You can recharge your health and suit energy at special stations scattered throughout the game.

The combat mechanics are fluent and feel very responsive and satisfying. It is fast paced, accurate and a ton of fun. You can use various weapons and choosing which weapon works best for each fight is a must. And of course, your most iconic weapon is your good old crowbar.

The graphics are nice and solid in Half-Life. It is a little polygon like, and some enemies and characters have some square shapes edges, but it is smooth and the textures on them are fine. The weapon detail, bullet impact and explosions are great. The animations are a little stiff when looking at it today, but for the time, they were excellent.

The sound is also excellent. Weapon fire sounds realistic, the fancy sounds your HEV suit makes are great and the voice acting is spot on.

In terms of controls, the game plays fluently. Everything is responsive and feels natural. The only problem I encountered is the abrupt tilt in the screen when you expect to land on a platform, but you missed the jump by an inch.

Overall, Half-Life lives up to its title of one of the best games ever made and, even today, it still holds up and is truly a masterpiece.

Definitely recommend it to everyone.
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Muy Bueno (8)
La calificación es para la versión de PS2. La versión de PC es muy superior.
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2964 users have this game in their library 63 users have this game in their wishlist 455 users love this game 26 users are playing this game 835 users have completed this game