Last Updated on July 25, 2023
Half-Life 3 will probably never appear, but what if the G-Man granted your wish for a Half-Life 2 prequel?
A bunch of Half-Life news has appeared over the past few weeks, which is worth highlighting for fans of the popular FPS series. Even though I’ve been back in the UK for nearly two weeks, I’m still catching up on some of the developments while I was on a much needed holiday in the Braga province of Portugal.
Half-Life 2 prequel Swelter now available
Released on June 26th, 2023, Swelter has been in development for a few years. It is set a few years before Gordon Freeman arrives in City 17, and aims to “explores the internal tensions within the Resistance during their rebellion against the Combine.”
Here’s a summary from the Swelter Steam page:
Swelter is a story-driven mod set several years before the events of Half-Life 2. It explores the internal tensions within the Resistance during their rebellion against the Combine in a post-Soviet Central Asian city, encircled by the scorching steppe.
With two hours of gameplay, Swelter is worth playing if you’re a fan of Half-Life 2 and miss your fights against the Combine… You can learn more about Swelter on the project’s ModDb page.
Original Half-Life ported to GZDoom engine
Rather than being a mod for Half-Life, this project is a mod for DOOM (we’ve already seen DOOM in Half-Life 2). Developer QuakerCraft exclaims: “An idea that i had in the closet for quite bit of time, and now is real!”
I’ve got to be honest, having played both games repeatedly, there is a key difference that feels lost in this clip. Half-Life has a good balance of puzzles and shooting. In contrast, DOOM is largely about killing (with the odd puzzle to solve and secret area to find). Consequently, while it looks fun, it’s a mashup I can’t really get on board with.
Here’s a hint of how it looks:
You can grab a copy of Half-Life in DOOM Engine from ModDb.
Lego Half-Life 2 pulled
Meanwhile, there was a short period in late June where a Steam Community mod replaced the character skins in Half-Life 2 with Lego minifigs.
Sadly, as amusing as this would be to play (complete with changed perspective), it seems Lego intervened and had the mod pulled from Steam. So, no Lego Half-Life 2 for you.
I’ll be honest, of all the Half-Life 2 developments while I was sunning myself, that’s the one that would have had me reaching for a laptop…
Gaming since 1984, retro gaming since 2004. Contributes to Linux Format magazine and MakeUseOf.com.