Half-Life gets a huge new update to celebrate its 25th anniversary

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Valve is giving away Half-Life for free until 6pm today, and has given the 25-year-old game a massive overhaul.

Valve is celebrating Half-Life's 25th anniversary with a range of goodies, including giving the game away for free on Steam until 6pm today (20th November). There are also steep discounts on other games in the series, including Half-Life 2: Episode Two for 57p.

As you’re no doubt aware, Half-Life was something of a big deal when it was released on 19th November 1998, celebrated in particular for its storytelling and immersive world. Rather than using cut scenes, the plot was provided by scripted sequences within the game, a technique that later became widespread in the games industry.

Credit: Valve

Now, Valve has revisited the original game and given it some generous TLC. The Half-Life update restores some cut content – including the original main menu and logo intro – and adds four new multiplayer maps. Plus the game now includes Half-Life Uplink, a mini campaign that was produced exclusively for magazines and hardware manufacturers.

The update also makes Half-Life compatible with the Steam Deck, and adds various graphic settings and upscale options for higher resolutions, as well as controller support. The full list of updates can be found on the Half-Life 25th Anniversary website, which has a fun little Easter egg: if you scroll to the bottom of the page, you can pick up a crowbar, which you can then use to whack the headcrab zombie at the top of the page.

In addition, Valve has put out an hour-long documentary celebrating Half-Life's 25th anniversary. The video features interviews with Valve head Gabe Newell, and was created by Secret Tape, a video production house from the team behind Noclip – the same channel that found an absolute treasure trove of old video game footage on VHS earlier this year.

Of course, as is traditional when any news outlet reports on Half-Life, we must now conclude with asking whether we’ll ever get Half-Life 3. This is the way.

Read more: Lego Half-Life 2 is as amazing as it sounds

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